Lanning speaks!

I always enjoy those rare situations when Georgia’s coordinators are allowed off the chain, so to speak, and talk to the media.  Dan Lanning took his turn yesterday, and while there was the usual coachspeak dished out (“We’ve talked about Havoc plays a lot here in the past. That’s still definitely a big focus.”), there were a few niblets mixed in here and there worth considering.

I found this observation about preparation work interesting:

On players being ahead of where they’ve been because of zoom: “Yeah ultimately I would agree with that. Our mental prep, whether we’ve been able to create it through walkthroughs, zoom meetings, is actually further along than our physical prep as far as the tecnhqiue that is required to execute something properly. Getting more of those practice reps is going to be really valuable, but the mental prep is probably ahead of the curve.”

I would assume if there’s been a real benefit to that, even when circumstances return to a more normal setting, some of the virtual training is going to be incorporated into future preparations.

It’s funny, but the most intriguing things he had to say were about offense.

What LSU did in 2019, scheme or personnel?: “Obviously they have phenomenal players and you don’t want to discredit anything they did as a team last year. They did a really good job. I think there’s elements of both. Ultimately we didn’t finish on plays. We were in the right place sometimes and didn’t capitalize. On the same note, they do a lot of unique things with empty. You see more of empty in our league than you ever have before. You see a lot of things from a motion standpoint, shifts, that they create and was unique to face. Moving forward I don’t know how much of that we’ll see, but I know we’ll be more prepared for it.”

Defending Todd Monken’s offense and what he brings to the table and what kind of challenges he can create for a DC: “One thing that’s unique about Todd, I’m not going to tell you what plays we’re running, right, but what’s really fun is he’s the definition of a coach that, he obviously has a lot of experience, knows exactly what he wants in his product. He’s very demanding of his guys, and what right execution looks like. But he’s also very adaptable to change. The game’s changed over the years. And I think you see a lot of pieces of that in his offensive game plan.”

Most people looking at Georgia’s offense for this season have tried to focus on how much Air Raid Monken plans to incorporate into his offensive scheme in Athens, but I don’t think that’s the way Smart has approached where he wants to go post-Coley.  I think that LSU’s game plan in the SECCG really left its mark.  There’s definitely a whiff of “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” in Lanning’s comments there.  I’m thinking we’re going to see more empty sets and creative use of personnel out of them to create mismatches than we’ve seen before.


Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

7 responses to “Lanning speaks!

  1. “Creative use of personnel … to create mismatches”

    If you’re going to recruit all of these highly athletic skill players and the. run zone read with no QB run threat over and over again, you might as well go pro set and line up to mash people and run play action.

    How Chaney and Coley utilized some of our outside talent the past 4 years is borderline criminal.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Corch Irvin Meyers, New USC Corch (2021)

      Exactly. Criminal would be a great word for it. For taking all of this talent and squeezing it inside a phone booth while also abandoning half the field (the entire middle) on pass plays.

      It’s no secret why 2017 was our best offense under those two. We ran the ball a lot, but we also had a lead blocker. I love Kirby and all, but if you want to play manball, why do you insist on doing it without a fullback??? It makes no sense.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Down Island Way

      c’mon ee…if those two calling plays with the talent on hand is “borderline criminal”….then their asses should have been investigated, sent before a criminal coach court judge and started serving some form of a sentence handed down as a ruling….like writing on the chalk board 100 millions times “i don’t know what possessed me to call THAT play at the 2 yard line, 3 times in a row”…..


  2. Corch Irvin Meyers, New USC Corch (2021)

    I don’t care what personnel groupings are on the field (I’d love to see us line up in 12-personnel like the Patriots would do a lot and actually throw to our tight ends, but that’s just me)… 00-personnel, 11, 12, shoot, even 01 or 02… do some crazy stuff with the talent we have, but for God sakes, SPREAD THEM OUT!!!

    No more phone booth offense and passing trees that have multiple pass catchers wind up in the same area of the field and for crying out loud THROW OVER THE MIDDLE!

    Thank you.

    Liked by 3 people

    • otto1980

      I am not tied to a personnel grouping but I do think the time is right to return to having a FB/H back I think UGA could have used Wold as a FB out of I sets and Shotgun rather split back or H back like Auburn. It gives you multiplicity out of a personnel package and I believe UGA’s short yardage struggles could have improved with the lead blocker.

      But yes, I do believe the route patterns could be much improved.


      • rigger92

        Oh my, that one extra lead blocker in front of Swift would have changed an awful lot last year. Old guys like me see that and wonder? I know that 10, 11, 12, etc… but still, one guy taking out the first level? Sony and Nick didnt need it (and I do not know why) but Swift did. Who didnt know that? Why? The kid was good but he wasn’t Chubb, Michel, Gurley good. I dunno, lets see what we got this year……


        • Corch Irvin Meyers, New USC Corch (2021)

          Some of the best runs Chubb and Michel broke in 2017 were due to Christian’s lead blocking.

          If you want to be a power run team, play “manball,” you can’t do it from the shotgun in 11 personnel with little actual play action and running a ton of zone reads with a QB who will never keep, but that’s what Kirby demanded. It was literally insane.

          The last two years on offense would’ve been far more successful if Kirby didn’t demand we get rid of the fullback and allowed the offense to play under center with 21 or 20 personnel, in the I-formation as the base set.

          A lead blocker is essential in the kind of power run game he wanted, but instead most of our sets we ran like a zone read spread team with a QB who never keeps. It was… a dumb offense these last two years.