Category Archives: Georgia Football

Dooley on freshman eligibility

Barrett Sallee asks Vince Dooley for his thoughts on the topic, and I’ll be damned if Dooley doesn’t say he would prefer that Herschel Walker hadn’t played in 1980.

“In an ideal world, I would like to see freshmen ineligible,” Dooley, who doubled as Georgia’s athletics director from 1979-2004, told Bleacher Report. “Particularly in basketball. I’d have to make economic sense in football, which is the biggest question. You’d have to add a large number of scholarships. In basketball, you might have to add a couple of scholarships, but not as many. So it wouldn’t be as big of a financial strain as it would in football.”

This, despite acknowledging that a few true freshman every year are capable of playing college ball and that Herschel was the best player on the team as a freshman.

I’m just curious how many of you agree with him.

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A quarterback battle is fine, as long as somebody wins the war.

So, Mark Richt popped up on Finebaum’s show the other day to talk about his quarterback situation going into the spring (pro tip for PAWWWLLL:  getting the name of last year’s starter wrong really undercuts that air of gravitas you’re trying so hard to project) and had this to say:

“We’ve got three guys right now on scholarship that are going to be battling away for that job,” Richt said Wednesday on the “Paul Finebaum Show” on the SEC Network. “I don’t really see a frontrunner right now. I see three guys that have a lot of talent, that have a lot of competitive spirit about them. I think it’s going to be a great competition.”

In other words, not too much.

Weiszer goes on to summarize the current situation well.  You’d think it’s Ramsey’s job to lose.  You’d also think if Ramsey doesn’t show out better in the spring than he did in the Belk Bowl, he will indeed lose it.  And having a new offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach doing the assessing and breaking in is clearly the X-factor.  So it’s understandable that Richt’s a little foggy about who’s going to be the man.

But more than worrying about who wins the job, I just hope that one of the three does win it in the spring.  (Insert your G-Day joke here.) Seriously, this would not be ideal:

The quarterback battle could roll into August or maybe even September. Georgia doesn’t open this season with Clemson and South Carolina. It opens on Sept. 5 against Louisiana-Monroe followed by Vanderbilt. If it’s a close call on who should be the starter, perhaps it will be decided in an actual game.

They need to be building rapport, timing and leadership at the position sooner than later.  The longer they have to put that off because of a quarterback battle that extends into the season, the greater the likelihood that the offense is more disjointed than we’ve been used to seeing.

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Thursday morning buffet

Perhaps you’ll find something nourishing here.

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Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange, Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football, Political Wankery, Science Marches Onward, SEC Football, Stats Geek!, The NCAA

KISS in the Schottenheimer era

One comment that’s emerging pretty consistently from Georgia’s new offensive coaches is the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mantra.  Here’s Rob Sale on that:

Sale admits that his job is to basically not mess up what took place this past season, when Chubb rushed for 1,547 yards and 7.1 yards per carry.

“The philosophy is play-action and that everything we do has to tie in,” Sale said. “We have to believe in the same principles of covering up the down linemen, knocking them off the ball and let great running backs be great running backs. It’s a pretty simple concept.”

It also has the benefit of having worked well over the past few seasons.

I know this started with Richt and his shopping list of what he wanted from Bobo’s successor.  But it’s good that everyone appears to be on the same page with the boss’ wants.  It’s one thing to keep it simple.  It’s another to get an almost entirely new offensive staff rowing in the same direction from the start.  The task of finding a new quarterback to run the show is a big enough chore.  There’s no need to complicate that with a big change in scheme.

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The rise of Jordan Jenkins?

If there’s a roster position that should warm the cockles of your red and black heart, it’s outside linebacker, where, barring injuries (not an insignificant concern, given Floyd and Bellamy look to be limited in the spring), there should be an abundance of riches.

But what should really make your heart palpitate is that it sounds like Jordan Jenkins looks to be stepping up his game.

Is this going to be Jenkins’ team?
Reports from winter workouts have already been that Jordan Jenkins is stepping up as a senior and leading these Bulldogs, not just at outside linebacker or on defense. He is developing that type of presence for the entire team. And while that doesn’t sound out of character at all for a high-character guy Jenkins, it shouldn’t be overlooked, because Georgia’s defense really hasn’t had that kind of vocal, lightning-rod, clear leader since Jarvis Jones left early for the NFL. Most of that has come from the offensive side of the football, and while you will have an experienced offensive line and Malcolm Mitchell back at receiver, quarterback, tailback, tight end and other roles look to be filled by relatively young players in 2015. If there is one guy you’d point to as a team-wide leader, it just might be Jenkins.

He’s always been a sharp kid, but there’s been a sense on occasion that he hasn’t pushed himself to the best of his abilities.  If he’s ready to take on a leadership role on in a serious way, that tells me he’s matured.  And that could be really exciting to watch.

That’s your Dawg porn for today, folks.

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Stubborn is as stubborn does.

Jeff Schultz wrote something about the Braves’ recent change at hitting instructor that is worth pondering in the context of Georgia football.  No, really.

There was a week remaining in the last Braves’ season when hitting coach Greg Walker, worn down by too many strikeouts and hard-headed players, phoned team executive John Hart to announce his exit.

“He called me and said, ‘Uncle,’” Hart said. “He had done a good job here. I wanted him back, and I ended up bringing him back later as an adviser. But he said, ‘John, I’m done.’”

We’ll never know if Hart, now the Braves’ president of baseball operations, really intended to keep Walker as hitting coach, given that the club ranked 26th in the majors in batting average, 24th in on-base percentage, 29th in runs scored and fourth in strikeouts.

But Walker’s exit reaffirmed his former job can crush a man’s will, fry his brains and lead them to run screaming into the night, like the health inspector at a nuclear-waste repository.

Now, we’re talking about professional baseball players, men who earn a salary from their job performance.  Skip playing winning baseball as a team goal.  You’d think that listening to people whose jobs are to make you better in your line of work would be natural, given that bettering yourself will eventually lead to a bigger paycheck.  But apparently last year’s Braves team had its share of stubborn knuckleheads who reacted to that kind of support like a stone does to running water.

And yet somehow, there’s a chunk of us who expect college players, who are (presumably) younger, dumber and motivated by things other than money, to absorb their coaches’ direction and play at their peak, emotionally, mentally and physically, week after week.  Because if they don’t, you can’t blame an inexplicable failure to be prepared at, say, a game against a mediocre Florida team on them.  It can only be the fault of lousy coaching.

That isn’t to say that coaching sometimes isn’t the right place to point the finger, or that some players do have the internal stamina to show up every week regardless.  But while Mark Richt, durr, may be a satisfying explanation for the knee-jerk crowd, sometimes you have to take into account that kids will be kids.  Learning to listen is part of growing up.  At least for some.

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“I told him, with all due respect, coach, that’s just how I do it.”

I just came across this Tracy Rocker story worth sharing.

Tracy Rocker sat in Mark Richt’s office, in the furthest corner of Georgia’s football facility, late last January. Rocker, then with the NFL’s Tennessee Titans, was interviewing for the vacant defensive line coach position in Athens, and he knew little about Richt. Namely, that the Georgia head coach, for all his stoicism, keeps a running monologue wherever he goes.

So, when Richt paused during the interview, suddenly deep in thought, and said, “Tracy Rocker…didn’t you coach Nick Fairley?”

Rocker shifted in his chair. He had, in fact, coached the dominant (and controversial) defensive tackle at Auburn in 2010. When Georgia visited Jordan-Hare Stadium that year, Fairley drew several personal fouls for spearing redshirt freshman quarterback Aaron Murray. Former Auburn assistant Trooper Taylor had to drag Fairley off the field in the fourth quarter.

“Yeah, I didn’t like that too much,” Richt continued.

Awkward!

Still, it didn’t keep him from getting the job.

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