Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Bobo, Mediocrity and Winston Churchill

"I cannot forecast to you the actions of Mike Bobo. He is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key. That key is...well, hell if I know."

My apologies to Winston Churchill. However, maybe Coach Bobo does resemble Russia in some sense. Methodical...stubborn...refusing or unable to see the big picture.

But it has become rather easy to forecast our offensive coordinator's playcalling. And that's just as frustrating as it is depressing. Bobo's had rare moments of brilliance, seemingly in sync with both his own personnel as much as his opponents'. He's caught defensive coordinators flipping when they should've flopped. But he's been unable to transform those unique moments of sagacity into eras of dominance. Instead we're left waiting for another flash from the lightbulb inside our former quarterback's head. 

I've said before that I don't think Mark Richt did Mike Bobo any favors by promoting him to offensive coordinator so early in his career. At least not in the SEC. But the problem with criticizing Mike Bobo is the stats seem to work both sides of the argument. Take a look.

Total off rank yds/game  yds/play plays/game  points/game
2007  74th 375 5.6 67 32.6
 2008 22nd 4226.7  63 31.5
 2009 75th 362 5.9 61 28.9
 2010 56th 385 6.1 62 32.1
 2011 50th 411 5.7 7132.3
Here's what stands out to me:
  • Over his tenure, 31.5 points a game and averaging 6.o yards per play. Not too shabby. But seem skewed by certain players who were matriculating in Athens at the time.
  • In other words, a good OC should be able to make yards and points from what he has on his roster. I don't see much of an adjustment to the specific skill sets of his players.
  • 2008 is like a fair temptress. God she's sexy. Seven yards a play? Yes, please!
  • But damn, 2009 sobered us up once Staff and Moreno left town.
  • 71 plays a game this season only validates what we expected was happening: the no huddle and shotgun are working for the most part. Wouldn't be surprised to see that number rise to higher than 10 more a game than last year.
Overall, the stats say to me that we're mediocre at best as an offensive unit since Bobo took over. Mediocre can win championships but only if it relocates to a different landscape. 

And Russia is a cold, barren land.


JaxDawg05 said...

This isn't in defense of Coach Bobo, but how much better would the offense click if UGA had good, solid, consistent play by the offensive line? I know Coach Bobo has been labeled "vanilla" and "predictable", but I know what LSU and Bama are going to run pre-snap and I still don't see anybody stopping them. Coach Friend needs to get some road graders at guard and a couple honest to God tackles on each end and let's see how the offense works.

Bernie said...

I hinted as much here - But at some point you have to recognize things, adapt to situations in front of you and make good of it. If not great.

I just don't see that happening as much as is necessary.

Spence715 said...

Note we're scoring more per game this year than in 2008

DawgFaithful said...

Other than 2-3 questionable calls, I've been happy with Bobo's play calling.  Not sure why Georgia fans insist on focusing on the negative.  We've won 5 straight and are tied for 2nd place in the East.  Bobo's play calling is part of that.  The statistics you show dont really prove anything.  If his playcalling is so predictable, why are we having so much success?  Maybe you should be a D-Coordinator.  You dont see him adjusting to the skill set of his players?  Did we or did we not target AJ Green the majority of the time last year? You could argue that that is predictable.  Have we or have we not turned Aaron Murray loose this year?  Last year he was much more conservative in order to protect the confidence of a Freshman QB.  Thats adjusting to the skill set of his players if I ever saw it.  Why is it so much fun to rip the coordinator?  Its one thing when youre losing but we're on a win streak.

DawgFaithful said...

Great point. And I am defending Bobo.  Its not like LSU and Bama are running a lot of trickery in there offense.  Theyre lining up and running their offense just like UGA does.  There will always be time when people know what play is coming... or at least what kind of play.  I read an article this summer where DavidPollack was talking about playing for Van Gorder.  He said that the week before the Kentucky game VAn Gorder had watched the film of every game Kentucky had played that season except one.  He invited the defense to come in and watch the last one with him.  In that meeting Pollack said Kentucky ran 65 offensive playys.  Van Gorder called everyone of them correctly except for 3 based on field position, formation, and down and distance.  Point is every offensive coordinator is has tendencies and is predictable if you study him.  Its all about execution.  Thats it.  If you have better talent and you execute and are well coached, its hard for anyone to stop you.

Ben Dukes said...

Gus Malzahn is seen as an offensive Genius.  How is his offense faring without Cam Newton?

Bernie said...

You're right about being negative on a win streak. And I thought Saturday was one of Bobo's best games. Key players out and he still had a great gameplan. I don't understand being in the shotgun running sideways to kill clock, but in the end we held on.

Bernie said...

Much less than mediocre. So maybe Bobo is the genius.

DawgFaithful said...

I hate that play too. Would much rather see the I-Form.  Thats a Richt play not a Bobo play.  Thats never going away as long as he coaches the team.

ron dewart said...

"And Russia is a cold, barren land." As in: Being shipped to Siberia! Fair punishment for daring to be so lacking in imagination.For showing all the creativity of a 2x4 (No offense intended ' Yellawood').For using the off-season deciding to go with what didn't work before. The best group of TEs in the SEC are almost 2011 versions of the old ARMY football "lonely end" #87. Coach Bobo,for what you did as a player,especially in '97, i shall forever honor you.For what you have done as a coach: (to interpolate Bernie) " Being average just ain't gonna get it done here at UGA son!" GATA

ron dewart said...

RE: Churchill, my all-time quote of his: "It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog."  A thread of this quote runs through all who truly live by our motto: G.A.T.A. I do and always will, to my very last breathe upon this earth love  our Dawgs and God help those who stand in our way. We will not win every game,but we will never stop fighting until the end.  p.s. "A Georgia man never quits." - Von Gammon