Saturday, August 17, 2013

Why Garrison Smith is a leader

He's not playing around. Talk is cheap and tweets are even cheaper.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Well, Champ never gave up a touchdown to Malcolm Mitchell

This comparison is awkward for me to read. In many ways. Not the least of which is that Louchiez Purifoy is not close to the cornerback that Bailey was. Something the writer admits to.
The last player to garner 100 snaps per game and excel at it was Georgia’s Champ Bailey. In ‘98, Bailey played 100 snaps in seven different games and produced 744 receiving yards and five touchdowns, while still being the top defensive player in the country. Can Purifoy do that? He may be that caliber of an athlete, but he’s not as strong defensively.
Otherwise, last year's cocktail party might not have tasted so good.

Keith Marshall in the mix for kicks

I like this idea. Support it 100%.
Besides Todd Gurley and Malcolm Mitchell, Georgia receivers coach Tony Ball is taking a look at Keith Marshall on kickoff returns. “He’s a speed guy, as well,” Ball said. “We’ve got some guys back there that we need to take a look at and see who’s going to take ownership of it.” Ball also listed Justin Scott-Wesley, Brendan Langley, J.J. Green and Sheldon Dawson as possibilities. “I think we’ve got some very good candidates that can help us,” he said. “Just got to find somebody that can communicate and protect the football.”
Malcolm Mitchell can handle the job when he's healthy. He only averaged only 22.5 yards per return last season, however he's a definite threat with the football in his hands. So I get the idea of putting him back there. But even as deep as we are at wide receiver I think we need Mitchell more to stretch the field and keep opposing safeties honest.

Marshall on the other hand has the moves and the speed to really make a difference in field position. Last season he averaged 6.49 yards per carry and 8.27 yards per catch. He's a difference maker. And I'd love to see him win the job.

Crystal Football says... (part one)

It's the first look into this thing. We'll see how things turn out and how accurate it is before we commit to making it a yearly deal. Today let's use a national scope.

Head coach most likely to need a job come December
"Now my QB is beat up 
AND I'm drunj ."
Has to be Gary Pinkel. He reminds me of that kid that is having a great time with a substitute teacher and then gets moved into a class where there's actual authority. Now all he can do is feel sorry for himself. The talk among Mizzou fans I met on the road last year was that he's been skating on thin ice for awhile. Now the on field results aren't going to hold him any longer. Ice breaks after Thanksgiving.

Honorable mention - Lane Kiffin. USC isn't a dumpster fire, yet. But the smoke has been billowing more and more since a colossal collapse in 2012 culminating in a Sun Bowl loss to Georgia Tech. Now that he can no longer blame lack of scholarships or his own father, I expect KiffyBaby to last the season. But not through Christmas.

The 2013 Heisman Award winner is...
We'll look at the true SEC contenders in part two. On a national scale I see Tajh Boyd, Oregon running back De'Anthony Thomas, their quarterback Marcus Mariota and Ohio State's Braxton Miller as true non-SEC contenders for Heisman ceremony invites. Boyd would need to put up big numbers against Georgia (which he likely will) and South Carolina as well as beat both (which I don't think his team can do).

Additional considerations for August: can anyone beat Ohio State? If not, Miller will get enough attention and spotlight to win the award.

Surprise team
Unfortunately I don't waste spend a lot of time on anything outside of the SEC, unless they are also a Georgia opponent. But I always like a team such as TCU. They play great defense year in and year out. And if they can get by LSU in the opener, that might make things easier for a team that plays both Oklahoma and Oklahoma State on the road. Take care of home business against Texas and a rebuilding West Virginia and the season finale at home against Baylor could be pretty interesting.

Honorable mention - Baylor, because they are another "Big 12" team that plays disciplined football. And also Northwestern. (stop laughing, it could happen) I know they're a B1G team, but two of their hardest games are at home (Ohio State and Michigan). If they hold court in a manageable September and beat the Buckeyes in early October, a win in Madison and in Lincoln are definitely conceivable and are the only road tests.

Ahhh...the good ol' days.
Biggest fall from grace
I want to put Ohio State here, but it's going to be hard for them to lose even once against their schedule. And a "fall from grace" would mean something 2012 USC Trojanesque. An easier gamble would be Texas A&M. (I know they're an SEC team, but I'm reserving another SEC fall from grace for tomorrow.) Even before the Manziel mess started surfacing, they had definite holes and were going to get pummeled by Bama in week three regardless of who started under center. There are questions along the defense, and although I believe Sumlin to be a damn good coach, the loss of offensive coordinator Kliff Klingsbury is not to be overlooked. Outside of Bama and LSU, the schedule is manageable by SEC standards. But a lot of those same teams could be chomping at the bit to knock the Aggies down a notch.

Honorable mention - Stanford. They're a good team and get their hardest games are at home. But, those games are all lined up back to back: Oregon State, UCLA and then Oregon. The first two should be wins. But if the Beavers naw enough on that pine tree (or whatever it is), one loss could easily turn into a three or four game skid. Also, Clemson. You know, because of all the Clemsoning.

Who will be the very last of the BCS champions
Gonna end on this as it is the last year for the much maligned, often altered and overall fairly successful formula. This is a tough one for sure. And it really hinges on two questions (while we're in August at least): can Ohio State/Oregon run the table, and can an SEC team finish the season with no more than one loss.

Barring any major injuries, the odds seem good that the Buckeyes can handle their end of the business. The road for the Ducks includes a visit to Stanford while they get UCLA and Oregon State at home. Of course, Chip Kelly is gone, but that system in Eugene should prove more than functional without him. Obviously Alabama controls its own destiny, but can an undefeated Georgia or South Carolina jump the Ducks and/or Buckeyes?

I'd like to think so. But it's not too far of a stretch to think see that the national media is sick of the SEC and will work to build up the weaker B1G and Pac-12 schedules. Still, until someone knocks the Crimson Tide off the dynasty, its safe to put them as the next champion.

Other misc.
Hot Coaching Name - Nod for Louisville's Charlie Strong again. He really seems cemented in, but what if a USC called? Also, Mike Gundy because who else will go so far as to save an Athletic Director on cab fare from the airport?

Trending seasonal meme - Officials inability to keep up with the targeting rule will one day take over for Manziel Disease. Rest (uneasily) assured. And of course the nation's boredom with dominant football in the southeast.

Tell me where I guessed wrong, or what I might have missed.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Scrimmage Two winner - Brendan Douglas

Seven carries for 50 yards may not sound like much. But the freshman earned a shout out from a defensive teammate.

Georgia preview podcast

Was asked onto the Make it Rain Sports show the other night. They've been doing a preview series around the SEC and were gracious ill-advised enough to ask me to come on for the Georgia portion. You can find their website here. Based in Jackson MS, most of their content is naturally geared towards Ole Miss and Mississippi State fans. But it doesn't take much digging to find plenty of SEC content as well. So check em out.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

If a linebacker is suspended in Tuscaloosa, does it make a sound?

Truth is, we don't know what team rule Trey Depriest violated. But he's had his access to practice revoked for at least a week. So I doubt it was for something as serious as forgetting his middle name or emerging from an alley on a scooter. Here are some more educated guesses.
  • Asked Saban if he had time to go to the bathroom, and the coach mistakenly heard, "Do you have time for this shit?"
  • Was found perusing his Anthropology syllabus during a team meeting.
  • Was overheard saying he should've gray-shirted.
  • He smiled.
  • Failed to punch correct elevator button for the head coach.
  • Overslept and reported to practice on time.
  • Remarked that he hoped the NCAA didn't suspend Manziel so he could get his autograph next month.
  • Wondered aloud as to why "the process sucked so much ass with the Dolphins."
  • Broke a promise to never retell the story of when Saban knocked in his door during his recruitment and his mom asked if Saban was a representative of the Lollipop Guild.
  • Dumped bucket of Powerade over the new statue.
On second thought, he'd've been kicked off the team for those violations. He probably just smoked a little weed.

Humpday Hilarity - the Butch Jones video

Remember the guy with hard on for Gruden? He's back, in the viral sense.

It's an understatement to type that this is NSFW, because it's actually not safe for humanity. You've been warned.

You know I love y'all. But if anyone of you ever made a video like this, we'd have some words before the men in the white suits finished strapping you into your new jacket.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The battle at cornerback

Lots of battles for playing time really taking shape now that camp has closed. Gentry Estes headlines many of them here. One of the more intriguing ones will be at defensive back. You're going to like what Chris Conley has to say.
“Shaq is a ball-hawk, and Langley is stout. The man has one of the best jams I’ve seen a freshman corner have. Langley has got long arms, and he’s strong. He’s patient. … Shaq has a really good sixth sense. Even if he might not know the play, he’s kind of been a ball-hawk these first days. And Langley has been doing really well, learning the defense. If he gets his hands on the receiver, it’s going to be hard to get off.” 
-- Georgia wide receiver Chris Conley on freshmen DBs Shaq Wiggins and Brendan Langley 
Yeh, I really like Langley's size. And there's been no mistaking Wiggins' moxie ever since we were recruiting him. Still, I expect Damian Swann and Sheldon Dawson to be the lead Dawgs here. But facing a team like Clemson out of the gate means lots of packages for three and four cornerbacks.

So I'm glad these young guys are giving the experienced receivers some fits.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Monday's Meatloaf - by a show of hands

Ok, I admit. I was morally and ethically outraged over Lester's roster management technique last week with Jeremy Hill's creative reinstatement. Almost as morally and ethically outraged as I was over the judge's decision to slap his wrist. But given some time to digest everything...I think Miles is once again proving to be one step ahead of the rest of us.

To illustrate, here's some ways in which I utilized this technique this past weekend
  • "By a show of hands kids, who thinks Mommy needs to make strawberry shortcake every night?"
  • "Hey y'all, by a show of hands, who thinks the youngest should pull my finger?"
  • "Ok, ok. Let's vote on it. By a show of hands..." (looks around and realizes everyone else is upstairs, eats rest of the bag of Lay's Chicken n Waffles)
"I call em like I wanna see em Coach."
Anyway, so...those results were a mixed bag of opportunity, poor wordage, and absentee ballots. But this revolutionary idea could have serious wide-ranging benefits. Should When Pwnn Wagers calls an unsportsmanlike penalty after a Malcolm Mitchell go ahead touchdown over the Tigers September 28th, while Uncle Verne sells some Miller Lite to the television viewers Coach Richt can stroll to midfield, grab that sonofabitch's microphone and ask, "By a show of hands...was Malcolm being unsportsmanlike when he blew his momma a kiss?"

In Jacksonville, when that lonely gator fan wanders into the Georgia section and starts spouting off at the mouth with his football knowledge (post 1990) and refuses to use a napkin to wipe the nacho cheez wiz off his chin, you can just stand up straight and ask, "By a show of hands y'all, should we help this lonely reptile find a better seat?" Go gatuh! Bye!

And when a one loss SEC Champion trails Oregon and Ohio State in the final BCS standings despite the fact that everyone in the nation knows the Buckeyes are no better than the sixth best team in the nation, I'll just stroll onto the set of the selection show, grab the mic from Fowler, look into the camera and ask, "Show of hands out there America, who'd rather see an actual tackle football team rather than these tattooed Urbanites?"

/drops mic, glares at Mark May and heads to Pasadena

Today's Ingredients
- First off, congrats to friend of the blog David Hale...catching the lead story on the mothership's college football page.
- Kimberley has a nice look at freshman tight end Jordan Davis and his adjustment to Georgia's playbook.
- Tyler finds some comfort in some Auburn press notes. Yes, you read that right. Check it out.
- Speaking of GSB, Tyler let PWD out long enough to kill amateurism. Dead. Thanks guys.
- Meanwhile, in Athens, Weiszer reports that the defensive line is taking to Coach Wilson's way of things.
- Blutarsky asks, "Wherefore art thou Xzavier Ward?"
- In his continuing breakdown of the Capital One Bowl, Ching picks up on what was one of my favorite plays of the 2012 season.
- Ed Thomas looks at a few questions for the defense.
- Elsewhere, Run Home Jack finds Jadeveon Clowney sitting out of scrimmages.
- Remember Mizzou is an actual SEC opponent. And DavetheDawg treats them as such with this preview.
- And over at DudeYouCrazy, Brad attempts to justify an argument for a college football preseason.

It's mid-August. And everyone you meet is happy. Everybody is undefeated and the sun is even shining on Charlie Weis' schematic advantage. Houston Nutt impressions are a dime a dozen.

Sure, there's a little tension. Most teams have a few games circled on the calendar that are causing some stress, even weeks ahead of time. But overall, the general consensus is that the pot of gold is still at the end of everybody's rainbows.

I even got a wave back from our neighborhood Tech fan this weekend. His gaze is usually fixed upon his shoelaces, but he met my greeting and gave me a smile. They're so cute in the summer sometimes aren't they?

Anyway, that's all about to change. I ran some numbers this weekend and it turns out that since 1996 when overtime was introduced, the first weekend that college football is available to fans inside of stadiums and on television sets, roughly half of the teams that play actually lose. Yes, 50% of teams will have a loss even before the second week of the season!

Here's hoping the Tiger tears are big. Have a great Monday Reader. Here's your fork.


Reader feedack: trolling among butt chuggers

I'm heading to Knoxville in October. Was thinking about wearing this t-shirt around town Friday night. What're the odds I make it outta there without Junior and Lulu frying me in a pan with a block of fatback next to a pot of squirrel giblet gravy?

h/t AHD

No more "Moreno effect"

Back in February, Georgia signed AJ Turman, JJ Green and Brendan Douglas as possible backups to Gurley and Marshall. At a different time in Mark Richt's tenure, all three would've been facing a year of the scout team and otherwise looking up at fifth year senior walkons.

My how things've changed.
There is not a clear leader to be the No. 3 tailback, but Bobo indicated that J.J. Green could have the advantage because he practiced in the spring and “has made plays for us offensively.” That includes in the passing game.
A.J. Turman has shown positive signs before missing practice time late in the week with ankle and knee injuries. Brendan Douglas has shown good vision running and has been an “excellent pass protector,” Bobo said.
Green, Turman and Douglas, all freshmen, could all play this year.
“We’ve got to get all three of them ready to play special teams,” Bobo said.
 Fabris is rolling over in a cornfield somewhere.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Willie-ing 'em up on Rocky Top

Feel free to add a caption if you can beat mine...

"Son, you hold em with your off hand. That'll free up your dominant hand to faceguard."

Bonus: check out the end of the scrimmage update for the Vols where a targeting penalty dramatically "changed the complexion of the game". Can you hear Penn Wagers giggling? (h/t AHD)

Camp grinds to a splash

Some nice video of the more relaxing parts of camp. Go Dawgs!