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Kirby Smart’s big challenge: Georgia football 13th in SEC in returning production

SystemSystem Posts: 4,306 admin
edited February 16 in Article commenting
imageKirby Smart’s big challenge: Georgia football 13th in SEC in returning production

ATHENS — All signs pointed to Georgia football winning the 2021 national championship with the Bulldogs ranking among the most experienced and talented teams in the nation.

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  • bogarttadbogarttad Posts: 136 ✭✭✭ Junior

    The top 5 on this list of "production returning" tells me how inane this statistic is for any consideration. MG, I can understand that at this lull period in college football, you must tether together all kinds of data to generate interest. I would suggest dropping this stat in the future however.

  • dragonslayerdragonslayer Posts: 424 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate
  • GoodtimeDawgGoodtimeDawg Posts: 233 ✭✭✭ Junior

    I think this is actually a common problem with teams that have a lot of seniors and the amount of NFL draftable players like Georgia has. Alabama and other elite teams have to deal with this often and do well in spite of the odds against them. Part of the reason why is the amount of depth and quality back up players who got experience the season before and now have their turn to shine and because they are as good or better then the previous season's starters, the team doesn't miss a beat.

  • VetdawgVetdawg Posts: 437 ✭✭✭✭ Senior


    we have seen how good our coaches can coach, and recruit. It is time to see how good they can “ reload”.

    Im most excited to see MJ Sherman on the field this yr and to see Big O do his thing and stay healthy

  • HemingweyHemingwey Posts: 1,099 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate
    edited February 16

    What? The ‘only’ one who would get drafted? Heck, I think there are several returning players who would be drafted this year, let alone next year… Nolan Smith anyone?

    Edit: I add that the strength of this year’s team was performance across the board and a ‘team first’ attitude. Alabama depended on a few stars…and we saw how that turned out for them.

  • HemingweyHemingwey Posts: 1,099 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    I agree about Washington… hope to see him really shine this year! 👍

  • BigDawg61BigDawg61 Posts: 547 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    The metric is useless. It's a 2 dimensional approach where 3 dimensions are needed.

    Case in point...nobody knew what Jones or Burrow was going to be, before their final year. They were not projected 1st rounders and neither was Williams, Metchie, Harris, Wyatt, Dean or any of dozens of 1st/2nd round picks over the years. Those guys became 1st rounders in their final season. Because they had talent and were coached and developed by the best. UGA has all that and some, so, yeah they have some guys standing in line, working, developing and waiting their turn.

    I will guarantee you, UGA has a number of players step out of the shadows next year and rate 1st/2nd round discussion, much the same way M. Jones, Burrow, J. Williams and others have done.

    Don't get bogged down in draft metrics that are the result of final year production. It tells you nothing about next year...only what happened in years past.

  • BigDawg61BigDawg61 Posts: 547 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    They've reloaded every year that Smart has been there...so, I'd say they're pretty good. LOL

  • bogarttadbogarttad Posts: 136 ✭✭✭ Junior

    According to the way this article is stated by MG, he is talking about the amount of production from last year's team returning for the coming season. With that 'metric', you can have 100% of you offensive production returning from a team that was the LEAST productive in the conference the year before. Not a very good comparative metric among all conference teams for future performance I would say.

  • BigDawg61BigDawg61 Posts: 547 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    One thing that stands out in 2017 and 2021 is the Seniors that chose to return. They didn't just provide production...but, probably more importantly, LEADERSHIP.

    In 2017, I remember Dooley making the comment regarding the importance of the draft eligible players, offense and defense, that chose to return and take the Dawgs to the Championship.

    The same thing happened in 2021, with Davis, White, Wyatt and Cook leading the way (there were others).

    I see a lot of leadership on this 2022 team as well. On offense, it starts with Bennett, Mitchell, Bowers (Fr) and McClendon. And, on defense, Chris Smith, Tykee Smith and Nolan Smith...Smith Cubed (LOL)...will provide plenty of production, but, more importantly, upperclassmen LEADERSHIP. Oh yeah, I left out Ringo (RS-So) and Carter...arguably their most productive returning defenders, but, will they be leaders? I truly hope so.

    I'm sure they've already started working on next year...behind the scenes. Much the way they did last year. I can't wait to see the surprise they have in store for us in 2022. Everybody knew UGA's defensive front 7 was gonna be good in 2021. NOBODY, knew they were going to be generational. And, they did it by committee with rotating DLs and LBs. A lot of those guys are coming back.

    Go Dawgs...sic em.

  • CandlerParkCandlerPark Posts: 145 ✭✭✭ Junior

    Earl raises some good points, IMO. But I also think you're being selective in the way you're framing who on the offense may be draft picks.

    First, a small thing, but you missed D. Washington in saying that Bowers is the only ball-handling offensive player who'd get drafted based on what scouts know about him; in more ways than one, Darnell's hard to overlook!

    Second, some in next season's ball handlers simply haven't established their NFL bona fides. yet could very well prove pro-caliber (Mitchell, Milton, McIntosh, Jackson, Blalock, Vandergriff, Arian Smith, Pod and freshmen Robinson, Delp and Stockton).

    Third, it doesn't make sense to leave out OL in analyzing the offense. Those guys usually make up more than half of offensive first rounds. And in that area we definitely have lots of potential high draft picks (Jones, Mims, Van Pran and two or three others). Granted, they lack experience.

    But I also think you're focusing on the wrong side of the ball. This year, up to five Georgia offensive players may be drafted, but none in Round 1 -- the point being that we're unlikely to see a drop off in offense with all the talent/experience we have, compared to the talent that we're losing.

    It's on defense, where we may be hurting in precisely the way you say -- not because we don't have great talent, but because (just as the analysis says) we've lost a lot of production (which in this case was highly correlated to the D's experience).

    No matter how good MJ Sherman and Smael Molden et al are, it'd be a miracle for them to come close to the caliber of play we got last year from nine departing draft-quality defenders -- most of whom played together for a couple of years.

  • CandlerParkCandlerPark Posts: 145 ✭✭✭ Junior

    "With that 'metric', you can have 100% of you offensive production returning from a team that was the LEAST productive in the conference."

    True (e.g. Vandy). But no metric's perfect.

    I do think it's useful to see that formidable KY and underperforming FL won't lose a tremendous amount, while up-and-comers SC and Tennessee will return loaded (especially with SC adding Rattler).

    Even though FL may be in transition, SEC East could be quite a gauntlet for us this fall.

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