Fine by me. Get it out of the way early, so I have the rest of the day for whatever.
Daily Archives: September 13, 2021
And they were.
South Carolina comin’. Need to buy? Need to sell? Tell us what you need in the comments.
Hoo, boy. Matt Hayes shore do love him some Anthony Richardson. In a few short paragraphs, he manages to compare Florida’s backup QB favorably to Joe Burrow, Tim Tebow (“Make no mistake, this isn’t Tebow. Richardson throws a better ball now than Tebow did at the same point in their careers.”) and Cam Newton (“The only player who compares to his skill set is Cam Newton, who began his career at Florida before transferring to junior college and eventually leading Auburn to the 2010 national championship.”).
There’s plenty more drool where that came from. The sky’s the limit for Florida.
If Richardson is what the Florida staff believes he can be, the Gators can beat Georgia, LSU and Kentucky and win the SEC East Division.
Makes you wonder what the quarterback whisperer is waiting for.
Holy shit, this blows my mind.
Admittedly, it will make for one helluva story to tell their kids one day. Not sure it says much about the program’s culture at FSU, though.
I hope every one of you loves someone the way the folks at Roll ‘Bama Roll love arrogance.
Who’s Number 2?
If we’re going by eyeballs and somewhat body of early work, then I’m going with the Iowa Hawkeyes, a team I had at No. 9 in my preseason poll. Last year you got the sense this team was very close to putting it all together. And after blasting No. 19 Indiana then traveling to No. 9 Iowa State and shutting them down, the Hawks are it. Sorry, Jawjah, beating up a G5 team and a one-dimensional Clemmy program get you usurped from the penultimate spot.
If Iowa didn’t exist, this dude would have to invent them.
Any one of these teams could make a case for No. 2, and I wouldn’t grumble too much. But for now, give me Iowa on a neutral field over the rest. And, as we all know, coaching and/or inconsistency will ultimately doom Texas A&M, Oregon, Georgia, and Penn State somewhere on the schedule. You can set your clock to Cristobal blowing a lead; UGA overlooking an unranked conference team; Penn State pulling a road no-show; and Jimbo just not preparing or adjusting in a crucial game.
Guess I can go ahead and catch up on my reading now. Thanks.
I recognize that the Stetson Bennett Experience sucked all the oxygen out of the room, but for my money, this was the biggest story of the UAB game:
“Well, they gave us the ability to stretch the field. The second part of the game, they played quarters, the same thing that Clemson played. But they bit on the run. They came up to the run, and Jermaine came by the safety that was playing quarters. So it is not a matter of wanting to stretch the field vs not wanting to stretch the field. It is what the defense does. If you do not cover somebody running down the field, you throw it to them. If they do cover them, you have to find somebody else. I don’t think it was about scheme. I thought it was aggressive and that is what we wanted to be.
“We want to be explosive. That is what we talked about all week. To be explosive, you got to be fast…”
Given the quality of the opponent and the injury situation, Georgia could have manballed the fuck out of the Blazers and nobody would have batted an eye. (Rolled an eye might have been a different story.) Indeed, it’s kind of what I expected, especially had Beck been given the start. And it’s clearly what UAB’s defensive coordinator expected. That’s what I loved so much about the first two plays of the game — Monken called a run to start in order to see what UAB was dialing up and then went for the jugular on the very next play because he knew they were committed to stopping the run.
Even better, Kirby never let up, even when he could have.
On his team coming out after a big win and avoiding a letdown by not taking the foot off the gas:
“It was probably the start. I have to watch the tape. I do not know if it was what we did or what they did. They gave us two really big, explosive plays. Some of that has to do with good playcalling, has to do with maybe a mistake by them. I don’t know. We wanted to be explosive and we were. There are a lot of things we can improve on. We got a lot of players who can get better on our team, but our team did start fast today.
“That is what we challenged them to do. Be aggressive and be explosive because we haven’t been. I thought they did a good job with that. At least in the pass game.”
It’s still early and nothing is written in stone, but to my unprofessional eye, it sure seems like Kirby Smart has handed the keys to the offense to Todd Monken and Monken is doing his best to take what opposing defenses are giving him. That’s a pretty big deal.
As someone who personally witnessed Greyson Lambert’s day for the record books, I’m not here to slobber all over The Mailman. But I must say I’m very much puzzled by the online sentiment I’ve seen from a chunk of the fan base that’s disappointed, not in Bennett’s performance (nobody’s that stubborn), but in Smart’s decision to let Bennett take the field in the first place.
That’s really weird, for several reasons. For one thing, let’s say for the sake of argument that Daniels convinced his coaches he was ready to play and turned in a dominant first half, only to turn the game over to Beck in the second half. Would the same folks be complaining that the staff knows what it has in Daniels and should have let Beck start? Don’t be absurd. (Now that I think about it, Logan Booker might. But I digress.) The fact is that Beck got substantial playing time Saturday and the coaches left the playbook open for him. And if South Carolina lives up to our expectations, that’s likely to be repeated, regardless of who Georgia’s starter is.
Aside from that, did we really know what Georgia had in Bennett, who turned in a flawless performance? Was it so unexpected that a year of Monken’s tutelage wouldn’t rub off to some extent? I saw two areas of clear improvement from Stetson. He consistently found the open receiver, which tells me he’s bought in to Monken’s play design and started to trust that there are open players on almost every play. Also, go back and check that long TD throw to Bowers — Bennett puts Daniels-esque air under that toss; it’s a pass he never would have made last season.
If you brush off Bennett’s performance by saying it was all about the opposition, fine. Just give me a list of every starting quarterback this season that’s turned in a performance garnering a passer rating north of 400. I’ll wait. Yeah, that’s what I thought.
The other thing in play here with regard to choosing a starter is that, unlike you or I, Smart and Monken have had the chance to watch Beck and Bennett all preseason. Kirby gave his reason for the decision as this:
The decision to go with Stetson…we are really young offensively, we have a lot of guys who are injured or out, whether it be Kearis (Jackson), George (Pickens), Darnell (Washington). We just have a lot of young players who are trying to grow up and we thought it would give a calming effect to have him in with his experience and his ability to play in games.
That doesn’t strike me as outlandish in the slightest. Georgia barely registered 250 yards of offense in the opener. An offensive clunker against a mid-major defense, even one as credible as UAB’s, might have had the team questioning itself and undoing some of the positivity flowing from the Clemson win. (And, I hate to say it, but it’s the times we live in, might have the media and the selection committee thinking the same thing.)
Look where Kirby sits this morning. He knows he’s got a solid backup in Bennett. He knows he got Beck some significant development time, with more to come, and gave the staff some clear indications where Beck needs more grooming and work. There is no quarterback controversy. Instead, there’s a reliable pecking order and a team that’s confident there’s a Plan B if Daniels has a minor physical setback.
Nobody’s insisting Stetson Bennett’s going to lead Georgia to a national championship. But nobody’s asking him to do that, either. Saturday, he did his job and he did it well. In fact, he did it better than we expected. That’s a good thing.
With this week, teams’ schedules begin to mix between cupcake games and games with P5 opponents. Net weekly change numbers have been added.
- Auburn: 6.81 (9.84 o; 3.03 d) [NC: -.60]
- Kentucky 4.42 (7.91 o; 3.49 d) [NC: -2.62]
- Georgia 3.55 (6.68 o; 3.13 d) [NC: +2.35]
- Florida 3.52 (8.13 o; 4.61 d) [NC: +1.73]
- Ole Miss 3.16 (7.74 o; 4.58 d) [NC: -.02]
- Arkansas 2.35 (6.44 o; 4.09 d) [NC: +.77]
- Alabama 2.15 (6.51 o; 4.36 d) [NC: -.07]
- South Carolina 2.12 (5.64 o; 3.52 d) [NC: -1.31]
- Texas A&M 1.94 (6.26 o; 4.32 d) [NC: -1.41]
- Tennessee 1.20 (5.51 o; 4.31 d) [NC: -.61]
- Mississippi State .68 (5.78 o; 5.10 d) [NC: +.04]
- LSU -.16 (4.74 o; 4.90 d) [NC: +1.98]
- Missouri -.37 (6.01 o; 6.38 d) [NC: -1.73]
- Vanderbilt -1.53 (4.31 o; 5.84 d) [NC: -.49]
Turnover margin, after week two:
- +4: Alabama
- +3: Arkansas, Missouri, Ole Miss
- +1: Auburn, Georgia, LSU, Mississippi State
- 0: South Carolina
- -1: Florida
- -3: Texas A&M, Vanderbilt
- -4: Kentucky
- -5: Tennessee
- Reality checks in Week 3: Auburn and Florida
- I understand why Saban was miffed at his team after the Mercer game.
- Kentucky and Mizzou both taking major ypp hits from their game reinforces my thought that they’re playing for no better than third in the division. That Kentucky turnover margin figure isn’t comforting for them, either.
- I’m starting to believe LSU’s offense isn’t back, baby.
- Vols, last in turnover margin is no way to go through SEC life.
The difference between a good Group of 5 team and one of the so-called Super Teams of college football is like the difference between a great peanut butter and jelly sandwich and one of the Top 5 meals you’ve ever had in your life.
There is no comparison, in other words. It’s OK to like both peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and a meal that might be worthy of your last, but it’s not fair to stand them side by side.