Daily Archives: March 12, 2021
This shit, via TAMU’s Rivals site, just cracks me up.
Do you believe Georgia and Alabama pay players to commit to their school? If so, why doesn’t the NCAA do something about it, see Question #1. (Big Smoothie)
A: Is water wet? And why doesn’t the NCAA do anything about it? They’re scared, impotent, understaffed and deathly afraid of mutually assured destruction. It’s easier to act like you’re working than actually work.
Jimbo Fisher worked for Nick Saban, with Kirby Smart and is currently at one of the few schools that arguably can marshal greater financial resources in the name of football than either Alabama or Georgia, but, sure, man, whatever hypocritical nonsense gets you through the night. It’s reassuring to hear there is no sausage being made in College Station.
As someone who grew up on this game when it was one of the top annual events in college football, I am offended.
Pathetic, Huskers. Just pathetic.
Speaking of squandering, it occurs to me I blew a perfect opportunity for a post topic when I linked this bad boy the other day.
Let me take this opportunity to rectify my mistake. Whom would you suggest as the perfect presenting sponsor for UGA football? (Reality would be a liquor wholesaler, but that’s probably not in the cards.) And for other SEC football programs? (Do I even need to mention the perfect marriage of McDonalds and UT football? No, I don’t think I do.)
Have at it in the comments.
So, Bill Connelly ($$) seeks to determine which program will, in his words, turn out to be the “next Clemson”. By that, he means a program on the rise that finally cracks through the glass ceiling to become a playoff regular. The club almost everyone else in D-1 seeks to join is pretty exclusive right now: Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Oklahoma.
As you might guess, Georgia tops his list. To his credit, Bill acknowledges that it’s an awkward fit, to some extent:
Should this one even count? Like JT Daniels being the most likely Next Mac Jones for 2021, it’s almost too obvious a choice.
Kirby Smart’s Dawgs indeed made the national title game in 2017, their average SP+ rating is higher than OU’s, they’ve got the top-10 finishes mentioned above and the only team that has landed more ESPN 300 prospects than UGA over the past three years is Bama.
So, what’s the issue holding Georgia back?
Bama’s in the same league. And if the Crimson Tide aren’t in the way, a historically great LSU is (in 2019). Dan Mullen’s Florida was good enough to end the Dawgs’ three-year SEC East title streak in 2020 as well. Nick Saban’s success has distracted us from the fact that, for everyone else, it’s really hard to consistently stand out in the SEC.
And that’s the rub here. Nobody in the club plays Alabama in the regular season. In fact, three of those four tend to ease their way through a regular season with few serious roadblocks, if any. (Hi there, Clemson!)
Perhaps the pundit class doing all these cusp pieces on Georgia’s postseason chances ought to change their analysis to include looking at the SECCG as a CFP entry game.
UPDATE: Just gonna put this smug take out there…
After seeing yesterday’s post about Erk’s summer workout regimen, friend of the blog and UGA Athletics History maven Jason Hasty sent this along:
Your post today with Erk’s summer workout regimen reminded me that for some reason a few years ago I’d scanned these pages from the 1984 summertime workout schedule for linemen. I thought you might find these amusing, if nothing else…and rest assured that I will not be incorporating any of these into my workout. Just reading these makes my knees hurt.
I get Jason’s point.
By the way, you can find these in in folder 13 of Box 8 of Series 7: Administrative Records of the Athletic Association archives. Apparently, along with a lot of other goodies, as Jason mentioned the box holds playbooks from the Dooley era.
Speaking of Nick Saban, he starts off with a valid complaint about what the CFP has done to public perception of college football.
“I’ve always been one that bowl games and playoffs are going to have a tough time coexisting together,” he said. “Bowl games have always been a positive thing for college football players because a lot of people get a lot of self-gratification for having a good season. Maybe you didn’t win a championship or whatever, but you get a chance to go to a good bowl game and have some fun. It’s a really good, positive reinforcement for college football players.
“When we had a two-team playoff, if we made a four team playoff, that’s going to take away from the bowl games and all the people are going to talk about is the playoff. My issue is not with expanding the playoff, it’s the more you expand the playoff, the less important bowl games become. Nobody talks about bowl games now. All they talk about is who’s in the playoffs and who are the four teams. That’s it.”
True dat. It’s his solution that’s a head scratcher.
“You don’t even hear about the other games and all that stuff,” he said. “That’s always been my issue with the playoff is that bowl games sort of get put on the back shelf. If we want to expand the playoffs, that’s OK. I don’t think you can have bowl games and do that as well. I’ve always been one that, if we are going to have playoffs, why don’t we make the bowl games a part of that.”
Everybody gets a playoff berth! Seriously, what are there, over thirty bowl games? So Saban is proposing that the playoffs go to 64 or so teams? That’s ESPN’s wet dream. Not sure it’s mine, though. Or that it solves the real problem Saban acknowledges.
First, he lists Georgia as the program that squanders the most talent.
1. Georgia — With three-straight No. 1 recruiting classes and a roster that is always seemingly loaded, there is no excuse for the Bulldogs to be in the middle of a 40-year national title drought. Despite coming a play away from a national title, Georgia has fallen short with more talent than anyone.
Next, his top ten list of head coaches omits Smart, although he’s got Lincoln Riley, for whom you could list the same faults, at number four.
Finally, just to make sure nobody missed the point, here’s what he has to say about Georgia being a program on the cusp:
Georgia: COACHING — Georgia has only been the playoff once and never made a run at the BCS title either so this boils down to coaching. The Bulldogs lost to a true freshman quarterback after having a 13-0 lead over Alabama at halftime in 2017 and it seemed like Nick Saban just had every answer needed while Kirby Smart did not.
Welp, I guess we’re well and truly fucked. Seriously, Farrell’s methodology is questionable at best. He dings Smart — who, as even he has to admit, has coached in a national title game — in part by blaming him for the program’s track record prior to Smart’s arrival. And if we’re going down the “he’s no Nick Saban” path, there are an awful lot of other coaches who need to be similarly dinged.
Look, Kirby Smart is going to have to get over the Nick Saban hump, no question about it. So does every other coach in the SEC, and, for that matter, every other active coach in America other than Dabo. In other words, Mike Farrell squandered his post.
More specifically, as Chase Stuart asks in this post, are 40-yard dash times correlated with success for wide receivers?
To figure that out, he evaluated the 853 wide receivers who ran the 40-yard dash at the NFL combine from 2000 to 2017, comparing their speeds and their receiving yardage totals. (Yes, he acknowledges that receiving yards may not be the perfect metric, but feels that’s as good a place as any to start.)
Anyway, you can go through the analysis on display in his post, or you can skip to the conclusion he draws:
… there does appear to be a pretty strong correlation between 40-yard dash times and wide receiving production, particularly once you focus on the 94% of receivers in the 4.32 to 4.68 range.
While there is lots of noise in the data, the correlation here is probably stronger than you would expect. Does the 40-yard dash time matter much for an individual player? Probably not. But if you had 20 wide receivers who ran the 40 in 4.40 seconds, if you knew nothing else, you’d probably expect them to fare better than 20 wide receivers who ran the 40 in 4.50 seconds.
Kind of reminds you of how to analyze recruiting/stars data, doesn’t it?
There’s only one way to end this week’s theme, I think: “All Along The Watchtower”.
Hendrix’ version is considered by many to be the greatest cover of all time, and you can hear why. Dylan himself said he came to incorporate some of Hendrix’ interpretation into how he played the song. But in terms of which of the two is better, that’s a much harder debate to have.
My feeling is that both are exploring the same apocalyptic theme, only from different points in time. Dylan’s perspective is at the calm just before the storm; Hendrix is right in the middle of it. Or, if you prefer, here’s how Gang of Four guitarist Andy Gill describes the difference:
“In Dylan’s version of the song, it’s the barrenness of the scenario which grips, the high haunting harmonica and simple forward motion of the riff carrying understated implications of cataclysm; as subsequently recorded by Jimi Hendrix… that cataclysm is rendered scarily palpable through the dervish whirls of guitar.”
Okay, enough from me. Bloviate away in the comments.
Hope y’all enjoyed this week’s MPC set.