Daily Archives: November 20, 2020

Cutting it close

Mmmm… this sounds a little bit dicey.

According to Dellenger, MSU is down to around fifty players.  (SEC rules allow a team to play with less than 53, if it elects to do so.)  You wonder how many more can drop before Leach is forced to cry no mas.


UPDATE:  Yikes.

Their special teams are going to be a disaster.



Filed under SEC Football, The Body Is A Temple

“All the power is in the coach’s hands — you can’t negotiate.”

Siri, what is the opposite of doing it for the kids?

Henry Bazakas embodied everything the University of California wants in a football player.

A third-generation Cal student who grew up in Berkeley, Bazakas arrived on campus five years ago as a walk-on offensive lineman. Three times he earned an award for having the team’s highest grade-point average. He and a teammate spearheaded a summer reading program at local elementary schools. He won another award, for his commitment to strength and conditioning while recovering from a torn knee ligament. And last season, after he finally earned an athletic scholarship, he started three games at left tackle.

But none of that counted for much in June, when Bazakas called the Cal football coach, Justin Wilcox, to say that he was opting out of his final season because of health concerns related to the coronavirus pandemic.

The call was the beginning of an odyssey that illustrates the normally unseen, cutthroat side of the business of college football, with tensions that have been magnified for athletes by the determined push to play during the pandemic.

Nine days later, Bazakas found his scholarship had been cut off, and he was then billed more than $24,000 halfway through his summer term because the athletic department had revoked the financial aid that it had already paid.

Nice way to thank him for his service.

The summer school aid was ultimately reinstated by a university appeals committee, which said the school had violated N.C.A.A. rules by abruptly pulling Bazakas’s aid before giving him an opportunity for a hearing.

Chalk it up as another episode of enhancing the academic experience.


Filed under Pac-12 Football

Over the middle

After watching the Florida game, this is hardly surprising news.

Rice has been gamely playing through injuries, so his numbers are to be expected, I guess, but there’s an argument to be made that Dean’s pass defense has regressed this season.

In any event, I can’t wait to see what the Air Raid does in the short to intermediate passing game.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Statistically significant?

Welp, this is quite the hot take.

Screenshot_2020-11-20 College Football Nerds on Twitter

[Okay, insert NERDS! joke here.  But I digress.]

Anyway, the rebuttals came quickly.

While I don’t think passer rating is useless, parker’s caveat is certainly valid.  Context always matters.  Aside from the data he cites, the context I’m thinking about is that Daniels compiled those numbers as a true freshman who reclassified to get to USC as early as possible, playing in a system poor enough to get his offensive coordinator canned after the system, while Bennett is more experienced and is working with Todd Monken.

Also, this.

Screenshot_2020-11-20 Brent Rollins on Twitter

That is the picture of a raw, talented kid who needs some grooming by a position coach and coordinator who has a clue.  I don’t know if that made Daniels better than Bennett at the start of the season, or even after the Tennessee game, but now?  Since we’re bandying passer rating numbers about here, does anybody think Daniels might have put up something better than an 80.33 on Todd Grantham’s defense?


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Saban repeats himself.

Gee, you’d almost think he believes this is a significant observation.


Filed under Nick Saban Rules, Strategery And Mechanics

It doesn’t take much to make me happy.

If you’re looking for a good breakdown of what JT Daniels will/may bring to the table tomorrow night, check out The Battle Hymnal’s Mississippi State preview.

Honestly, they had me at “he delivers a very clean ball to an open receiver”.


Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

“*the guy in last lost his job”

I have this vision of Todd Monken trying to figure out a way to get Kirby to understand that constantly missing open receivers isn’t an efficient means of running an offense.  He may have found the angle that works.

“It (explosive offense) happens by execution, right? It happens by picking up blitzes and hitting open receivers,” Smart said. “It happens by blocking downfield and making explosive runs. We finally had an explosive run where we got on the perimeter and made some things happen.

“Explosive plays happen—well you can say they happen by lack of execution by the other team or by proper execution of your team. We’ve been really close on some explosives that we have missed or dropped. Those are things you have to hit and have to be accurate to do that.”

Smart said it doesn’t matter how much he talks about it, the players will ultimately be the ones to change the trend.

I can’t wish myself into an explosive offense, we have to work ourselves into that,” Smart said after the loss in Florida . “We’ve got to execute our offense and complete more passes, be more accurate.

“We’ve got to get guys open, but when we do we’ve got to hit them.”

There you go!  You don’t have to worry about explosive plays if your quarterback can’t hit an open receiver in the first place.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!, Strategery And Mechanics

“That guy’s had an incredible start to an incredible career.”

Seth Emerson ($$) makes the rather obvious point that if you compare the first five years of Richt’s career to the first five years of Smart’s, it makes a lot more sense to take that as a compliment.

It’s pretty simple, really.

Point 1: The start of the Mark Richt era was as good as the program had seen since the Herschel Walker years. Those of us who were around during the 2000s remember a Georgia fan base that was as happy as it had ever been. They were glory years — just like the start of the Smart era. The comparison between the two is not an indictment. It’s a compliment.

Point 2: Richt was ultimately let go because he couldn’t do any better than those first five years, even though the program was still at a very high level, especially in 2007 and 2012. Smart will also ultimately be judged on how things go from here.

In other words, nobody was bitching about where the program was at after the conclusion of the 2005 season.


Filed under Georgia Football

The original Wild Dawg

Sad news about one of the all time Bulldog greats.

Former University of Georgia football standout Jake Scott, the star safety who was MVP of the Super Bowl that completed the Miami Dolphins’ 1972 perfect season before his relationship with coach Don Shula soured, died Thursday in Atlanta. He was 75.

Scott died after a fall down a stairway that left him in a coma, former Dolphins teammate Dick Anderson said.

Scott played in three consecutive Super Bowls, won back-to-back championship rings and made the Pro Bowl five years in a row with Miami. He had two interceptions, including a 55-yard return from the end zone, against Billy Kilmer and the Washington Redskins as the ’72 Dolphins won 14-7 to finish 17-0.

After retiring, Scott became reclusive and harbored hard feelings toward Shula and his coach at Georgia, Vince Dooley. Scott lived for years on a remote Hawaiian island and traveled the world but seldom attended Dolphins or Bulldogs reunions.

He was once close to Shula, but they went without speaking to each other for 28 years, and Scott was one of only two living players to skip the 1972 Dolphins’ 25-year celebration in 1997.

One of the many things you could say about Scott — the man certainly knew how to hold a grudge.  The hard feelings about Dooley resulted from a famously bad decision by the coach.

Scott fell out with Vince Dooley over the coach’s decision to send the 1968 SEC champions to the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans rather than the team’s choice of the Orange Bowl in Miami, where the Dogs could have gone. The team ended up making a lousy showing in a 16-2 bowl loss to Arkansas, with tales of the hellraising they did in the Big Easy quickly making their way back to Athens. The rift with Dooley led Scott to leave UGA and play pro ball in Canada since juniors weren’t eligible to sign with the NFL in those days.

Dude was just an amazingly great player during his truncated run in Athens.

He led the SEC in punt returns and punt return yardage, holds the conference record for most interception touchdowns in a single game (two) and still holds the school record for career interceptions and return yards with 16 for 315 yards. Incredibly, he did all that in just two seasons, since freshmen didn’t play on the varsity in those days.

Add to that all the wild, off the field stories and you’ve got yourself a true legend.  Jake Scott broke the mold.  R.I.P., brother.


Filed under Georgia Football