Category Archives: Georgia Bulldogs
If you haven’t been reading the “Georgia Bulldogs’ Blog” which is apparently owned by the Georgia Bulldogs, you’ve been missing out. Thomas Brown, not the former Bulldog running back but the wordsmith extraordinaire, drops knowledge, insight and all around goodness on a damn-near daily basis.
Consider his most recent post, titled succinctly,
National Letter of Intent Signing Date Wednesday 4 February 2015. Under-achiever is not judged – based upon talent here ? Losers of 21 of most recent 25 games vs teams higher ranked than us in AP or Coaches’ Polls for the 7 seasons making up Mark Richt’s entire 2nd half of his career here.
I don’t know about you guys, but I have no respect for blog posts that don’t command block quote indentation when referencing the title.
There are a lot of good points in “National Letter of Intent Signing Date Wednesday 4 February 2015. Under-achiever is not judged – based upon talent here ? Losers of 21 of most recent 25 games vs teams higher ranked than us in AP or Coaches’ Polls for the 7 seasons making up Mark Richt’s entire 2nd half of his career here. (Hereafter: “NLoISDW4F2015.U-ainj-buth?Lo21omr25gvthrtuiAPorC’Pft7smuMR’se2ndhohch.” for short).
The second sentence of the article is particularly poignant as Brown points out, “Always the 1st Wednesday in February, next year 2016 will be on February 3.”
I am very excited about the condensing of the year 2016 into one single day in early February, and I don’t think I’m alone in that regard.
“NLoISDW4F2015.U-ainj-buth?Lo21omr25gvthrtuiAPorC’Pft7smuMR’se2ndhohch.” goes on to speak true wisdom about the Super Bowl, Katy Perry, girl kissing and Sunday morning church.
Super Sunday ! And, I am looking forward to Katy Perry I kissed a girl. The NFL always decides which songs will be played. I kissed a girl and I liked it. I wrote a blog about this with her video when it was announced for Super Sunday. My preacher hates that term, which is why I use it. Always get a sermon about every Sunday is Super Sunday. No. No, it’s not.
Nothing has called into question the credibility of religion more so than Brown’s blog (which is owned by the Georgia Bulldogs) and it’s insistence that not every Sunday is Super Sunday.
But spiritual significance does not end there in “NLoISDW4F2015.U-ainj-buth?Lo21omr25gvthrtuiAPorC’Pft7smuMR’se2ndhohch.”
Annually, we give all the credit to Mark Richt for the recruits signing here. And, then it’s blasphemy to even begin to suggest that Heaven Forbid Mark Richt is responsible for teaching the recruits to obey the rules. Obviously, they who say such folly did not come from our home. Dad had us obey the rules. He taught us to obey the rules. We all know all 7 of us that which is right and that which isn’t.
Annually here after 2007, our recruits are never taught here to obey the rules.
Instead Mark Richt tells them the exact opposite.
“I love you,” Mark Richt exclaims from on high as one-by-one he kicks them off the team. They tell him in the press that he is turning his back on them just when they needed him most.
Such wisdom from the Georgia Bulldogs’ Blog leaves readers like myself yearning for more.
Tell me more about your father, Thomas Brown.
“Disciplne, Dad teaches, is teaching to obey the rules,” says the master of the “NLoISDW4F2015.U-ainj-buth?Lo21omr25gvthrtuiAPorC’Pft7smuMR’se2ndhohch.” universe.
So go. Read the only take on Georgia recruiting that matters. Read, “National Letter of Intent Signing Date Wednesday 4 February 2015. Under-achiever is not judged – based upon talent here ? Losers of 21 of most recent 25 games vs teams higher ranked than us in AP or Coaches’ Polls for the 7 seasons making up Mark Richt’s entire 2nd half of his career here.”
Thank me later.
That’s all I got/
DudeYouCrazy contributor Ashley Barnett went to the Senior Bowl last week and spent some one-on-one time talking to some of the game’s biggest stars. Here are the highlights.
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I don’t know what to make of Georgia’ recruitment of the wide receiver position.
I already regret that wording as it implies that the coaching staff has done something wrong in talent evaluation and pursuit—which I don’t think is the case. More aptly: I don’t know which wide receivers will sign with Georgia.
I wrote about the position group at Bleacher Report yesterday morning and the situation has already changed with Shaq Wilson’s flip to West Virginia. In theory, Georgia could still hold on to Terry Godwin (5-star), Darius Slayton (4-star), Jayson Stanley (4-star) and Michael Chigbu (3-star) while adding someone (perhaps 3-star Terrell Chatman). But at this point, that’s the best case scenario.
I wrote about the significance of Van Jefferson’s decommitment a few weeks ago and critics bemoaned my “overreaction.” I get it: Commitments aren’t contracts and they’re subject to change. But they still hold more often than not. As such, losing the No. 11 receiver in the country (per 247Sports) was not a good thing then and it’s still not a good thing now. And my fear at the time (a disconnect between the new coaching staff’s expedited efforts to get to know recruits) could be coming to fruition given Wilson’s defection.
Shaq Wilson, an athlete who could play DB or WR, was going to get a chance at WR at Georgia. So, the fact that West Virginia “wanted” him at wide receiver doesn’t necessarily equate to an excuse for “understanding” why he flipped. I’ve said this before, teenage kids should be able to play football wherever they damn please. If Morgantown made more sense for Wilson, he should be there. I’m not questioning his decision. I’m questioning—or perhaps just wondering—what contributed to his decision. And I’m fearing that there may be something thematic there.
Recruiting is, at least in part, about momentum. I’m not sure Georgia has much momentum as national signing day approaches. Godwin is getting the full court press from little-man Nick Saban, and that’s never a good thing. Auburn is after Darius Slayton in a big way, and he probably hasn’t had time to realize that the Bulldogs have outscored the Tigers 155-57 over the past four years and won nine of the last 13 battles in the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry. Those things make me nervous.
I’m not completely convinced Georgia is in trouble at the receiver position, but if Godwin and Slayton go elsewhere things could get really thin for wide receiver group that returns the following:
- Just 57 total receptions in 2014 (26% of all Georgia completions)
- One player with more than six catches in 2014 (Malcolm Mitchell with 31)
- No players with more than 250 receiving yards in 2014
Godwin, Slayton and others will be counted on to help out immediately. But Van Jefferson would have been equally depended on. And given that immediate need, it seems like Wilson would have had a legitimate chance to compete early on as well.
That’s all I got/
Georgia Football: As National Signing Day Approaches the Pressure is on Pruitt and Defense, not Schottenheimer and Offense
Georgia cares about its defensive presence. The numbers support that story.
Jeremy Pruitt is making head coach money. His $1.3 million annual total would rank 67th among head coaches. His salary in 2015 will be more than what Boise State’s Bryan Harsin, Marshall’s Doc Holliday and Memphis’s Justin Fuente earned in 2014. And those men coached teams that finished in the Top 25 of the Coaches Poll.
Pruitt’s salary is more than the entire assistant staff budget of 62 schools in 2014. In total the defensive coaching staff is earning more than $2.25 million. The money is backing this Georgia defense.
Not surprisingly, so is recruiting. Georgia has seven early-enrollees (plus one UAB transfer). Seven of those eight players play defense. Of 19 hard commites (Per 247Sports) 10 will definitely play defense and an 11th (athlete Shquery Wilson) could settle on that side of the ball. Georgia’s two leading uncommitted targets, Roquan Smith and Arden Key, both play defense. If Georgia were to land them both and Wilson were to settle in the defensive backfield, 20 of 29 new Bulldogs would be on the defensive side.
So while it’s trendy to discuss the “risky” hire of Brian Schottenheimer, a potential quarterback controversy and the concept that Nick Chubb is all we know about the offense, the real pressure is on Jeremy Pruitt.
Pruitt has a nice debut season in 2014, but it’s hard to say it was a grand slam. While improvements defined the season for the most part, each of Georgia’s three losses could be pinned on the defense.
Pruitt himself took the fall for the South Carolina loss, and he did so rightfully. “I felt like there was probably 10 or 15 plays throughout the game where I put them in a situation where they didn’t have a chance to be successful, and that’s my fault,” he told Chip Towers of the AJC. The accuracy of those numbers can be questioned but 10 or 15 plays represented somewhere between 13.9 and 20.8 percent of South Carolina’s offensive plays that day. Combine that disturbingly high ratio with Pruitt’s utter confusion as to how a 35-point offensive effort by Georgia could possibly be to blame, and it’s fair to peg that loss on the defense.
Nobody looked good in the Florida loss, but allowing 38 points to an abysmal offense that averaged just 20.1 points per game vs. SEC competition (and a nearly identical number vs. Power 5 Conferences as a whole) is no way to wring one’s hands free of guilt. And the damned spot left by 418 Gator rushing yards (and only six pass attempts) sure isn’t coming out anytime soon.
And 399 rushing yards allowed to Georgia Tech is equally hard to ignore. Sure, the Yellow Jackets finished the season second nationally in rushing yards per game, but in 13 other contests Tech averaged 338 rushing yards per contest. Pruitt’s defense nearly allowed a 20% premium. Time and time again the Yellow Jackets picked up crucial conversions, moved the football and ate clock. Time and time again the defense came up short.
By all accounts the defense improved tremendously against the pass, and that’s hard to dispute. Georgia finished second in the nation in passing yards allowed per game (158.4) and 11th in pass defense efficiency (106.4). Todd Grantham’s last defense in 2013 finished 60th (227.4) in yards allowed per game and 85th (134.7) in pass defense efficiency.
But as evident as improvements against the pass may have been, steps back against the run were equally obvious and still quite painful.
In 2014, Georgia finished 78th in rushing yards allowed per game (175.6). In 2013, Georgia was 42nd in rushing yards allowed (148.2 per game).
As a whole, Georgia improved in total defense by 43 yards per game and dramatically in points allowed (from 29.0 to 20.4) in Pruitt’s first year. But the other question remaining is how much of that success (particularly in scoring defense) can be attributed to forced turnovers? In 2013 Georgia forced just 15 turnovers. In 2014 that number almost doubled to 29.
I’m not a blind subscriber to the “Turnovers are Totally Random” school of thought, but I don’t think turnovers can be predicted either. According to GeorgiaDogs.com, Georgia forced 13 fumbles in 2014 and recovered 13.
That ratio seems so absurd that it defies logic, but if it is true it’s certainly not to be expected moving forward. Over the preceding three seasons Georgia actually averaged more fumbles forced (10 in 2013, 21 in 2012 and 17 in 2011 for an average of 16 per year). But only once (17 recoveries in 2012) did Georgia match 2014’s number of recoveries. In 2011 Georgia recovered 70.6 percent of forced fumbles, in 2012 that number rose to just shy of 81 percent and in 2013 the figure was an even 80 percent. Those numbers are strong, but they’re not 100%.
So what does all this mean?
It means the defense got better in 2014. I can argue against that notion but I can’t do so with much integrity. As a whole, the defense got better. But did that improvement surpass expectations for 2014? That much is debatable. Passing defense got better, rushing defense got worse, total defense improved some, scoring defense improve a lot, turnovers forced were (possibly) inflated and in the end Georgia’s three losses all came with woeful defensive blunders.
Georgia is betting big on Pruitt. I’m not going to say he’s undeserving, but I’m not ready to unequivocally say he’s earned a 53% pay increase yet either. In any event, he’s getting his guys on the recruiting big board.
If he comes up short, it will be hard to blame Richt or McGarity but I think we all know Richt and McGarity won’t be a duo if such a scenario comes to pass.
That’s all I got/
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Georgia Football: Five Vital Uncommitted Targets, Apologies to Miss Jackson and Difficult Household Names
If you want more thoughts, check out my writing here, but let’s get down to brass tacks.
- CeCe Jefferson – This is a long shot. He’s likely Bama-bound. But if I’m pitching him, I’m using three sets of two words: Lorenzo Carter. Run Stopper. Playing Time. And I’m tossing in a “pleeeeeaaase.”
- Roquan Smith – Dude can play any linebacker position and given his build (not all that rangy) and existing depth at his natural position (OLB), why not sell him on immediate contention for a spot at middle linebacker? Eleventy billion combined tackles from those two spots are gone thanks to the departure of Amarlo and Ramik. Don’t tell me a Top 50 overall player (per 247Sports Composite) couldn’t fill that gap.
- Donte Jackson – Donte could be the most important Jackon in the state since Outkast issued a musical apology to Miss Jackson in 2001. He’s undersized but ridiculously athletic and shifty (think Isaiah McKenzie at DB) and could do work under Pruitt.
- Chidi Valentine-Okeke – Valentine-Okeke could become the weirdest household name around if he lives up to his potential and his size. Georgia’s a great place for him as he’ll need extra time to transition from tiny-school ball to the SEC. With four returning starters and both tackles from 2014 still around, Chidi could learn for a year.
- Patrick Allen – Allen was a commit to Georgia then reopened recruiting after Bobo left. He’s more polished than Valentine-Okeke but is ceiling isn’t as high. I could see him playing anywhere on the line though (even center) and Georgia will need depth on the line in 2015.
That’s all I got/