Category Archives: SEC Football

Do the math

Applying that percentage to this season’s 70 scheduled SEC games gets you almost to 14 postponements (or worse).

Let’s hope the bye weeks cover that.

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UPDATE:  Holy shit.

They scheduled that game a week ago because Baylor’s first opponent couldn’t play.

12 Comments

Filed under SEC Football, The Body Is A Temple

Go ahead, take it personally

I’m going to date myself here, but back in 1976, when I was at UVa, the ACC basketball coaches snubbed the ‘Hoos’ Wally Walker by leaving him off their all-conference first team.  Walker took it personally and erupted with a brilliant ACC tourney performance that led Virginia, which came in as the eighth seed, to a conference title by knocking off three straight top-20 opponents.

All of that is to say I’m hoping for a case of history repeating with Azeez Ojulari.

Georgia has 10 players listed on the three preseason All-SEC teams per league coaches. It’s good for second in the conference behind Alabama’s 11. According to a statement released by UGA on Thursday, two Bulldogs are on the first team, seven on the second team, and one on the third team.

Junior nose tackle Jordan Davis and senior safety Richard LeCounte III are on the first team. Junior center Trey Hill, sophomore wideout George Pickens, senior defensive end Malik Herring, senior inside linebacker Monty Rice, sophomore inside linebacker Nakobe Dean, fourth-year junior cornerback Eric Stokes, and junior punter Jake Camarda are on the second team. Sophomore outside linebacker Nolan Smith is the lone third-team representative. One Bulldog noticeably absent is redshirt sophomore outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari. He led UGA in sacks a year ago with 5.5.

Pick up that chip and put it on your shoulder, big guy.

13 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, SEC Football

Speaking of victory laps…

Greg Sankey has gotten plenty of pats on the back for the course he’s steered for his conference’s start to football play.  He certainly deserves credit for avoiding the PR pitfalls that have plagued some of his peers, but some of the congratulations seem premature.  After all, not a single SEC team has started play yet.

This dropped yesterday.

Now, Missouri wasn’t going to beat ‘Bama fully staffed, so in the short term, this means little.  But what’s going to happen when a contending team takes a run of bad luck, health-wise, and loses a game or two because of a roster shortage… or, worse, two teams with major health concerns are forced to face off against each other?

If Sankey isn’t waking up every day and immediately crossing his fingers, then he’s a bigger fool than I think he is.  He knows the conference still has a long way to go.

21 Comments

Filed under SEC Football, The Body Is A Temple

Best name in the SEC

I didn’t read the linked piece, but, honestly, they could make all ten things about his name and I’d be totally good with that.

12 Comments

Filed under SEC Football

Bill Connelly’s SEC East preview

Honestly, given the uncertainties of the season, I’m impressed by anyone giving a preseason preview a stab.  Bill has SP+ to fall back on, which helps, I’m sure.

Here’s one key observation for each of the seven division teams (2020 SP+ ranking in parenthesis):

  • Vanderbilt (110):  “… SP+ projects the Commodores as at least 17-point underdogs in every game on the schedule.”
  • Missouri (44):  “And with six SP+ top-25 opponents in their first seven games, the Tigers’ attack will have to jell immediately to avoid a rough start.”
  • South Carolina (36):  “After going 9-4 in his second year, Muschamp has won just 11 games in two years. Brutal schedules aside, the Gamecocks’ production hasn’t matched their potential, and they are, per SP+, projected favorites in just three games this fall.”
  • Kentucky (22):  “SP+ projects UK 22nd overall; that would be the Wildcats’ best ranking since 1977 if it holds. It’s a shame that, with this year’s 10-game league schedules, that translates to only about a .500 record or so…”
  • Tennessee (19):  “A top-25 performance might earn you only a .500 record this year, but even if the offense remains too iffy for the Vols to threaten in the East, they’re going to be an awfully tough out.”
  • Florida (5):  “… Trask posted a 25-to-7 TD-to-INT ratio and finished 10th in the country in Total QBR. But he thrived at least partially because of the game plan. His passer rating was 169.6 on first down, 148.0 on second and 139.2 on third, and Florida ranked only 53rd in blitz downs success rate. When conditions were favorable, he thrived. When they weren’t, he didn’t. And that was with Van Jefferson and Freddie Swain, last year’s top wideouts. They’re both now gone.”
  • Georgia (4):  “The Dawgs were 24th overall in success rate in 2019, but they didn’t make many big plays, and once they were behind schedule, drives fell apart — they were 11th in standard downs success rate but 102nd on passing downs. That’s what you would expect from a triple option-offense, not one overflowing with blue-chippers.”

SP+ only predicts two of the seven will emerge with +.500 records (Georgia and Florida, natch), two going 5-5 (Tennessee and Kentucky) and the other three with losing records.  If you had to pick the biggest surprise in the East, which team would you choose?

14 Comments

Filed under SEC Football

Okay, a simple question

For me, it’s got to be the 1980 Cocktail Party.  And you?

109 Comments

Filed under SEC Football

“How many points will Georgia need to win each of their games?”

Dial this clip up to the 19:10 mark, where Simmons and Elliott play a quick game of predicting now many points Georgia will need to win each of its ten games this season.

Even including Alabama, they don’t see a single game when Georgia will need to score 30+ points to win.

So, in the comments, play along and tell us how many points Georgia will have to score to win each of its games in 2020.

34 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles, SEC Football

2007, a great year, a wacky year

Come for Matt Mellon’s APR review of the 2007 SEC season

And here are the APR standings with conference rank in offensive touchdowns, touchdowns allowed, and APR in parentheses. This includes conference games only with the championship game excluded.

Finally, SEC teams are sorted by the difference between their actual number of wins and their expected number of wins according to APR.

I use a game and a half as the standard of determining which teams significantly over or under-performed relative to their APR. By that standard Mississippi State and Tennessee significantly exceeded their APR.

… and stay for his trashing of Tennessee.

Since LSU’s fourth quarter comeback, its been all downhill for the Vols, at least in SEC play. In the twelve seasons since that championship game appearance, Tennessee has posted the fourth worst conference winning percentage among SEC teams. In those twelve seasons, Tennessee has a better record than perennial punching bag Vanderbilt, a basketball school, and a team currently riding a nineteen game conference losing streak.

Alabama has pretty much lapped the SEC field, finishing seventeen games better than second place Georgia over the past twelve seasons. But to paraphrase Marc Anthony, I come to bury Tennessee, not praise Alabama. So, for the rest of this post, I’ll try to put in perspective how bad Tennessee has been.

Alabama has twice as many undefeated conference seasons (4) as Tennessee has winning conference seasons (2). In fact, the Vols have more seasons of one or fewer conference victories (3) than they have of winning conference seasons. Texas A&M, a team that has played 32 fewer conference games than the Vols have over the past twelve seasons, has more league victories. Missouri, another SEC newcomer that has also played 32 fewer games is just three victories behind them. Tennessee has losing records against ten of the other thirteen teams in the conference.

Nearly one third of their conference victories since 2007 have come against Kentucky and over half have come against Kentucky and Vanderbilt. There have been fleeting moments of competency with the Vols blowing out Big 10 teams in Florida bowl games three consecutive seasons (2014-2016), but their conference record in that span was just 12-12. The 2014 team raised expectations, but the Vols were not able to win divisions in flux in either 2015 or 2016 and once the other two traditional powers in the division got their collective acts together, the Vols were not in position to contend. It’s been a rough twelve years, but lets be optimistic. Say Jeremy Pruitt has a successful run in Knoxville and his replacement is, I don’t know, Jon Gruden, or Bill Cowher, or Lane Kiffin, or Amos Alonzo Stagg. Imagine over the next twelve years the Vols post a 63-33 conference record (Florida’s SEC record since 2008). Then they would have played .500 ball in the SEC over nearly a quarter century!

As much as I cherish the 2007 season as a football fan — it’s still my favorite year — I have to admit it was disappointing from a Georgia perspective, to say the least.  Two inexplicable losses, one to a subpar South Carolina team, killed the Dawgs.  But I also have to recognize that it was sort of Tennessee’s year.

Tennessee also finished 3-0 in one-score conference games, beating Kentucky, South Carolina, and Vanderbilt by a combined six points.

And the way those Kentucky and South Carolina games ended!  Basically, it was the football gods’ way of telling Georgia fans we can’t have nice things.

5 Comments

Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange, Georgia Football, SEC Football, Stats Geek!

Steele’s revised 2020 toughest schedules

All 14 SEC teams are in his top 25, including the entire top eleven.

Screenshot_2020-09-02 Toughest Schedules for 2020 Updated – Phil Steele

He’s about the only one I’ve seen rank Georgia’s schedule easier than Florida’s.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

10 Comments

Filed under Phil Steele Makes My Eyes Water, SEC Football

This is what all in on the narrative looks like.

Shot.

Chaser.

Give Sallee credit; at least you don’t have to waste time listening to the details.

9 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles, SEC Football