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January 11, 2016

My thoughts on Jim Cheney

I've gotten the question enough for me to seriously ponder his hiring, more so than the reported Mel Tucker hire. On it's face, the Tucker hire is...interesting, since his only stint as a DC resulted in historically bad defenses for the Chicago Bears. Also, the whole hiring former NFL coordinator thing hasn't worked out well in Athens recently. Still, everything I hear is that he's a great teacher and recruiter. And he worked with Kirby at Alabama, which means his boss has seen his work up close and personal.

So about's why I like him: he isn't affraid to mix up his offensive philosophy based on talent at his disposal. He's like Lane Kiffin in that way:
arguably no coach over the last two seasons has been better at strategically “stealing” plays than Alabama offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin. Kiffin has a history of being flexible with offense, as while an assistant at Southern Cal under Pete Carroll and offensive coordinator Norm Chow, Kiffin spent a lot of time at Tampa Bay’s facilities where his father was the defensive coordinator and Jon Gruden was the head coach, where he picked Gruden’s brain and studied hours of film on Gruden’s West Coast Offense.
Kiffin has reinvented himself doing just what I would hope Cheney is going to do at Georgia. I don't see a problem with that. Cheney started his career as a spread guy at Purdue. Urban Meyer modeled his offense on what Cheney was doing at Purdue. His time in the NFL gave him experience in the more traditional under center attacks.

Another thing I like is he's coached TEs, OL, and QBs. And he's pretty good at coaching QBs. I've mentioned Cheney's role in getting Jonathan Crompton drafted into the NFL. Hell, Tyler Bray is still on a roster. What he did this season with Nathan Peterman at Pitt is pretty impressive. Peterman, who was a graduate transfer from Tennessee, when 193 of 313 with 20 TDs and 8 Ints. That puts in in Josh Dobbs territory already.

Finally, he's worked with a graduate transfer QB before. There isn't any reason to think that UGA will bring one in, but if they did, Cheney has dealt with that.


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