There were lots of calls into the call-in show asking for more carries for Knowshon, and I've seen the same sentiment on message boards. Moreno and Thomas Brown both had 22 carries in the game. While giving Moreno the ball is never a bad thing...
A couple of thoughts:
- 1. Knowshon isn't a Herschel Walker or Bo Jackson sized back. He doesn't appear to have a body big and thick enough to consistently take 30-35 carries a game.
2. It's obvious from reading Richt's comments earlier that the consecutive 25-33 carry a game performances were physically wearing on Knowshon. Moreno also took himself out of the game as part of his rotation with Thomas Brown on Saturday.
3. You are more likely to get injured when you are tired. Ask Tech what it's like to run your top tailback into the ground only to see him unavailable for important games late on the schedule. See Tony Hollings, PJ Daniels and Tashard Choice.
4. We weren't just trying to win one game on Saturday. We were trying to win three or four more games. There's not a logical person watching UGA football who thinks that Moreno can carry the ball successfully without consequences for all 44 carries yesterday. So how many more is the right answer?
5. KM went for 124 yards on 22 carries. Assume he carries the ball 3 more times to the "magical" 25 carries. Given his rushing average per carry vs. Brown's on Saturday that nets the team 6.9 yards for the game. On the season, there is a 0.4 yards per carry difference between the two backs. Is that really that big a deal for this game?
Again, I'm not saying that there's not a difference between the two or that one isn't better than the other. All I'm saying is that there is definitely a law of diminishing returns that kicks in with over using a tailback of Moreno's size over a series of games.
BTW -- At run happy Arkansas, McFadden only averages 24.7 carries per game while Felix Jones averages 10.3 carries/game.
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