Sounds like spring practice is going swimmingly.
Sounds like spring practice is going swimmingly.
Should be some Kirby comments to post tomorrow. Who’s ready?
Max Olsen ($$) is back with his take on college football’s most efficient returning quarterbacks this season. For that, he uses a statistic we’re familiar with:
… total yards per play (YPP), the average gain on all their passing and rushing attempts combined. Since quarterbacks do gain a lot more yards per attempt from passes than rushes, this isn’t some perfect stat. But it is useful.
A quarterback’s YPP helps capture his impact in the passing and running game, his ability to generate explosive plays, his passing accuracy and also how many sacks he takes.
Atop his list (minimum 100 plays) is a name we’re familiar with, one JT Daniels.
In support are some impressive numbers.
In Daniels’ three SEC starts, the Bulldogs scored on 19 of their 31 offensive drives. The offense became much more explosive, hitting 30 plays of 20-plus yards in the final four games (7.5 per game, second-most in the SEC behind Ole Miss during that stretch) after producing 23 over their first six games (3.8 per game) without him. Even their rushing output improved with Daniels on the field, going from 4.1 yards per carry before he took over to 5.35 yards per carry over the last four games.
There are questions, of course. It’s a small sample size and Daniels didn’t exactly face top level defenses week after week during that stretch. The flip side of that particular coin is that Daniels still had to shake off over a year and a half’s worth of rust with teammates he hadn’t spent a tremendous amount of time working with in an offensive scheme that itself hadn’t cleared the tire kicking stage.
In other words, I’ll take my chances with what’s coming in 2021.
Sally Jenkins is full of righteous indignation, and I am here for all of it.
Meanwhile, the NCAA overlords, with a bloated staff of more than 500, soak this system for $44.8 million a year in “administrative” costs and another $58.4 million in sundry business expenses. Then there is the whopping $23 million devoted to “governance committees” and an annual convention. That’s $126 million — for what? For double-talk and book-cooking.
Don’t stop now.
Somewhere along the line, the NCAA began to operate more like a strip-mining operation than an educational nonprofit. And the trouble with this conduct at the top is that it has leached downward. The bloat-and-spend habits have taken over virtually every major member school in the organization — and so has the mind-set that revenue is all that matters and if a women’s team isn’t driving enough dollars it’s somehow undeserving. “We’re made to feel like we’re not contributing, and I think we are,” McGraw says.
As The Post’s Will Hobson documented in a 2015-2016 investigation, over the space of a decade payrolls for administrators at Power Five conference schools jumped by 69 percent, while the number of teams essentially didn’t change. At UCLA, the athletic director tripled his salary to $920,000. At Michigan, the number of administrators making $100,000 or more rose to 34. “Everybody’s got a director of operations of operations,” one athletic director acknowledged.
And Emmert’s compensation, already in the seven figures, more than doubled. Yet women’s sports are the ones he has framed as a cost?
Hey, give the NCAA some credit here. At least they’re equal opportunity exploiters.
So, somebody asked Seth Emerson ($$) in this week’s mailbag, “What is the weirdest and/or most interesting news you remember covering on the Dawgs beat?”, to which he replied in part,
But ultimately, the entire 2015 season could qualify by itself. The chaos of that season has given birth to plenty of tantalizing rumors that aren’t really true. But it was true that coaches were openly hostile with each other (even if not literally fighting). It was true that in the lead-up to the biggest game, the team secretly promoted the No. 3 quarterback because they liked his running ability (and then didn’t run him in the game). It was true that the school fired Mark Richt, tried to gussy it up as a mutual separation, then allowed Richt to sit next to the athletic director at a news conference where Richt made clear he wanted to keep coaching. And then took the Miami job a few days later.
But ultimately, Nov. 5 of that year was the weirdest. It was a few days after the Florida debacle, and rumors were swirling that Jeremy Pruitt was being fired. Someone, it’s still not clear who, tweeted a fake quote from Pruitt that essentially said Georgia embraced mediocrity. There was a radio station report in Atlanta that it could be happening, which added that there had been “physical altercations,” and as someone on the beat I can attest that the messages were flying. We were chasing it down, and finally, around noon, we had enough confirmation that it was not, in fact, true. But we ended up getting scooped by Richt himself, who in a very uncharacteristic move addressed the rumors and shot them down with a tweet.
We now know that Richt and Pruitt were already on their way out, the power brokers having decided after the Florida loss to make the move and hire Kirby Smart. But it wasn’t happening that day. This was not quite unlike the lead-up to the previous year’s Belk Bowl, which provided what to me was the weirdest moment on the beat:
Enough rumors swirled that Richt was being fired after the game that Richt was asked about it — by a non-Georgia writer, and non-national writer, because we all realized it was a silly rumor and not appropriate to ask at a news conference. But another writer had no such reservations and asked Richt if he was resigning in front of the room, as well as game MVP Nick Chubb, sitting a few feet behind his coach.
“Nick, did I resign in the locker room?” Richt said, smiling.
“No,” Chubb said back, chuckling.
You could probably write a great book about all that.