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November 23, 2010

Source of Concern: UGA's Defense

Georgia's 2010 defense has issues stopping misdirection, playing assignment football and consistently tackling well. Unfortunately, Paul Johnson's entire career is built on preying upon teams that have those faults.

It's no secret that one of the biggest problems in defending the Triple Option (T.O.) is having enough practice time to install the offense with your scout team in a competent enough manner to properly simulate what you'll face on game day. Teams who've had more than a week to prepare for GT's T.O. have obviously fared dramatically better than those that haven't. However, there are exceptions.

In 2008, Coach Martinez had a bye week to prepare, and it didn't help at all. The Yellow Jackets ran for a bazillion yards.

To his credit, Martinez wised up in 2009. He realized that he didn't have a bye week to get ready so he and Richt quietly came up with another plan to prepare the Dawg defense. They devoted a practice session everyday from Fall Camp to Thanksgiving to learning/defending the Tech offense. The result was a well prepared UGA defense holding Tech 109 yards below its season rushing average. will Grantham prepare the Dawgs to stop Tech? How will he overcome our fundamental problems in managing misdirection?

Well..they don't exactly run Johnson's offense in the NFL so it's hard to say what he'll do. Based on his resume, I don't think Grantham has coached against any true belly option teams since the 1996 Michigan State at Nebraska game, which ended about like every game against a mid-90s Husker team ended.

Coach Belin saw the T.O. several times at Vandy including two losses to Johnson's Navy squad and several other match-ups with military academies and other smaller programs. He probably has the deepest breadth of experience on the staff outside of Garner...and the graduate assistants.

Coach Lakatos appears to have last faced the triple option in 2006 as Paul Johnson's Navy team beat UConn 41 to 17 in Storres, CT. He has some other military school encounters vs terrible Army teams with better results, and he was at Div I-AA Maine from '95-'00 where he probably saw the T.O. quite a bit. Although, the next piece of information I have about Maine football will be the first.

Basically -- I'm saying I have concerns with our ability to stop them. GT operating without Nesbitt *should* mean a massive UGA victory, but you still have to play smart, physical football and tackle well. And UGA hasn't done much of that this season.

GT isn't going to roll over and play dead for us just because their "Heisman candidate" is out with a busted arm.

See Also:
-- Grantham braces for Option -



JBJ said...

Great to see a rational article regarding UGAs chances. I couldn't agree more with the assessment. Most UGA fans think we are going to blow out GT for some reason that escapes me. I feel it will hinge on turnovers. They will be magnified in this game because it is going to be very close.

Anonymous said...

The only way UGA doesn't win this game is if we beat ourselves first.

Anonymous said...

We must adopt the attitude that we should have adopted against Auburn: assume this will be a shootout and punts/field goals will potentially get you beat.

If this is AJ's final game, get him at least a dozen balls.

Anonymous said...

My all time biggest frustration with a Georgia coach was during the Tech game in 08.

Tech kept lining up a wide receiver as an ineligible receiver, and we covered him all day long. My section was screaming for some sanity, but alas, Willie knew better.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know if our stadium lights still work?

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