Who’s the key to Georgia’s offense, Isaiah Crowell or … Mike Bobo?

Losing Caleb King means Mike Bobo is going to have to get creative. (Associated Press)

Losing Caleb King means Mike Bobo is going to have to get creative. (Associated Press)

So, after a weekend in which Caleb King leaving the team dominated just about any discussion of Georgia football, it seems there’s a prominent split in opinion among both fans and college football observers in general over whether Georgia losing King was a Very Big Deal or No Big Deal at All.

On the one hand are those who feel the lack of his solid, if unspectacular, running and his better-than-average pass blocking will be severely missed by the Dogs, especially in the first couple of games. On the other side are those who look at the body of his work at UGA and his continuing off-field problems and think we likely would have been in for just more of the same. They’ve labeled King a bust and feel moving him out of Isaiah Crowell’s way that much quicker will likely just accelerate the true freshman’s development.

I’d love for that to be true, and who knows, Crowell may have the same sort of out-of-the-box impact as Marcus Lattimore did for South Carolina last season. Still, I think it’s ridiculous to view the loss of King as anything other than a blow to Georgia’s offensive hopes early in the season.

I’m not offering up a doomsday scenario. The need for Crowell to produce as a true freshman was always going to be one of the keys to the Dogs contending for the SEC East this season. But now he’s going to have to do it from the very start, which is asking a lot.

Who this really is going to put the pressure on, however, isn’t Crowell so much as offensive coordinator Mike Bobo. Without the flexibility that King would have provided him while Crowell develops, Bobo is going to have to get creative, which to date has not been his strength.

Whether it’s finding new ways to use Branden Smith on offense, spreading out the passing game more, expanding the role of Bruce Figgins at fullback, or finally figuring out how to use the Wild Dawg with Nick Marshall, Georgia’s offensive hopes this season ride on Bobo’s shoulders.

How do you feel about that?

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298 comments Add your comment

PTreeDawg

July 12th, 2011
1:28 pm

Bobo has got to figure out how to score more points against ranked teams. Defense did fine last year (UGA defense only gave up 26 points vs. ranked teams where South Carolina defense gave up 36). UGA offense only scored 15 points a game against ranked teams, where South Carolina scored 23. http://www.cfbstats.com/2010/leader/911/team/offense/split13/category09/sort01.html

Frank Lane

July 12th, 2011
1:29 pm

MISDIRECTION. Not full fledge reverses, just quick misdirection to keep defense guessing. UGA is too predictable. As soon as snap, it is apparent what play we are running, if not apparent before the snap. We are not strong enough to execute against a defense that knows exactly what is coming.

Frank

AltamahaDawg

July 12th, 2011
1:31 pm

Not following that Mobile. You are saying they weren’t conservative enough with Murrray?

Mobile Dawg

July 12th, 2011
1:31 pm

Sorry your not multi dimensional PTree Dawg. Thanks for the tip. Everyone keep it simple for PTree.

Wonderful Ohio on the Gulf 'Dog

July 12th, 2011
1:32 pm

Carl

@ 12:31 pm

Yes, Carl.

You just did.

Joey

July 12th, 2011
1:36 pm

Creative to Bobo is trotting Brandon Smith in for one play, and giving him the ball on that very play, usually on a flanker reverse, when the whole football world knows he’s gonna give him the ball.

Lord knows I’m not a OC, but I would trot Smith in for at least 8-10 plays ,and use him as a decoy in half of those, creating the mismatch I want because of the D overplaying him. The other half of his appearances, get the ball to him in open space.

But then, I’m no OC. I would bet, though, that most OCs would find ways to get the ball in the hands of one of the fastest players in college football.

gbal

July 12th, 2011
1:39 pm

Coaching (Bobo and MR) are the key.

They have to recognize the talent they have and then come up with a plan to put the pieces into a position to be successful. If it means thinking outside the “2009/2010 BOX” and our standard play calling, then so be it.

If the talent at TB is not at the level that it can pick up blitzes and block, we dont put them in a position where they are required to pick up blitzes and block for gods sake. There are other options.

If the OL does not have the talent to consistently protect AM, gome up with quick plays that dont require protection for long periods of time. Plays that make hte D THINK and slows them down a bit.

Our O coaching staff (Bobo and Richt)have to adapt their game to work to our strengths and cover our weaknesses. And we also have to instill a JUST DO IT attitude. Just Do It!!!

There is no way we have or had less talent last year than SC, Arky, Miss St, Colo, and CF…… And we are in games against Fla and AU till the end… These coaches just have to adapt to our talents.

IC will not be successful w/out some game planning.

So the key is not IC …. It’s not Bobo ….. It is CMR + Bobo. CMR better not just leave it to the assistant. He is the HEAD coach and better participate in the evaluation and planning.

It is

Mobile Dawg

July 12th, 2011
1:39 pm

Exactly Altamaha. Wrong game plans for a “Freshman QB”.

PTreeDawg

July 12th, 2011
1:42 pm

When Bobo went up against unranked teams, he scored 55, 41, 43, 44, 55, 42.

Againt ranked teams, scoring dropped to 6, 24, 12, 31, 31, 6.

If you look at the low scoring games offensively, it’s when Bobo went up against top ranked RUSH DEFENSES like UCF (6 points), South Carolina (6 points), Miss St (12 points). Bobo’s offense tends to fall apart when he can’t RUN the ball.

7576DAWG

July 12th, 2011
1:42 pm

Murray is going to have to make quicker decisions this year and run more often when he can make five or more yards. LeMay will be here to back him up if he gets hurt. So, Bobo’s reluctance to letting Murray run last year made the offense a lot more predicable.

RJ Voorhees

July 12th, 2011
1:42 pm

The pressure is on Richt. Regardless of the performance of Bobo or Corwell, Richt is the one that will receive the blame. As well as it should be! Richt better understand that this is his last shot to prove to the Dawg Nation that he has what it takes. However, the man can recruit and there will be some key commitments in the next two to three weeks. Lets hope my sources are right and GO DAWGS!!

douglas

July 12th, 2011
1:43 pm

Bobo’s playcalling is about as creative as a rock.

No Herschel Walker

July 12th, 2011
1:45 pm

But, when the Dogs turn Crowell loose against Boise State, the whole nation will see why he was so heavily recruited.

RJ Voorhees

July 12th, 2011
1:45 pm

David C

July 12th, 2011
1:50 pm

One player does not make a team. especially when they are a True Freshman. Aaron is more important than Crowell. But that Said you live and die by Offensive Coordinator. Plan and simple..

Birrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrd Man

July 12th, 2011
1:54 pm

LOL Coach Bobo does look like Billy Bob in “Slingblade.” I reckon.

me

July 12th, 2011
1:54 pm

Coach Bozo is going to cost Mark Richt the Preacher his job.

gbal

July 12th, 2011
1:55 pm

Yea – There is a reason for the word HEAD in CMR’s title. Not up to Bobo to choose the direction for the O. He can recommend, but its ultimately up to CMR to make the plan and then Bobo to execute it.

Sometimes the Assistants need coaching. Nothing wrong with that and I hope these two both recognize this need!!

UGA FRIEND

July 12th, 2011
1:57 pm

The key to UGA`s offense will be Crowell. He has already said that his goal is to gain 1000 yards and make the All-American teams as a freshman. Just ask him again and I would bet he says this again.

Black Mountain Bulldog

July 12th, 2011
1:57 pm

Games are won on mostly two things. The play in the trenches and turnovers.
If the Bulldogs control both lines of scrimmage, and win the turnover battles.
This will be a great season, if not we will have to suffer, like last season.

PTreeDawg

July 12th, 2011
1:58 pm

In 5 of 7 of Bobo’s losses, he went up against a strong RUSH defense:
UCF, SC, Miss St, Aub are all top 15 Nationally, Fla was top 30

If you stop Bobo’s offense from running the ball, he has a problem generating points solely through the passing game.

Dawg Gone

July 12th, 2011
2:00 pm

@PTreeDawg sorry in the SEC if you score 30 or more vs ranked team…you should win the game period everytime if not its NOT the offenses fault.

Richt`s Hammer

July 12th, 2011
2:01 pm

Clarke County Correctional.

Greens23

July 12th, 2011
2:05 pm

I think Bobo goes into a game with a good plan but he doesnt adjust well during the game.

Cmon man

July 12th, 2011
2:11 pm

I’m not saying the season rest on crowell’s shoulders although I hope he lives up to the hype. I want to know why people feel like its impossible for him to become the spark plug for the offense. People tend to forget that s.car was average at best before lattimore got there. They went from getting whipped in the bowl game against uconn to winning the east and if you remember s.car fell apart when lattimore started to slow down at the end of the season. Also wasn’t dyer the mvp of the bcs title game? Not saying that crowell will do the same but I’m saying its not impossible because it just happened last year. Also during bamas title run you can’t ignore the impact trent richardson made as a true frosh yes it was ingrams show but trent played d@#n good football!

RJ Voorhees

July 12th, 2011
2:13 pm

@Green23, I agree, therefore he should not be calling the plays for a top college program. He may have success coaching at a recreational department.

GT is a 4th rate high school team

July 12th, 2011
2:14 pm

Unfortumately the word BOBO and CREATIVITY does not seem to be synonymous.

Vance Duly

July 12th, 2011
2:14 pm

Now, douglas, that was a bit insensitive to any rocks that might read this……….

Part of Bobo’s problem in those games where the running game is NOT working is that he continues to try it, with the SAME plays and the same results, until the game starts to get out of hand. Doing something that isn’t working over and over again is not automatically going to make it work! On the other hand, look at last year’s GA Tech game. Our passing game was unstoppable in the 1st half (220 yds and 3 TDs). So, in the 2nd half we passed 5 times (4 complete), and let Tech back into the game. All we had to do was continue to throw it all game long…………all day. Tech was helpless. But, we pulled the plug on our own offense!!! Tech almost came back and won………. Just one example. It’s time for Bobo to grow into his job………..

PTreeDawg

July 12th, 2011
2:14 pm

Look at the losses & points & turnovers:
1) Florida game offense had 4 turnovers and the offense lost the Florida game.
2) South Carolina? red zone fumble & scored 6 points.
3) UCF? offense had 3 turnovers and scored 6 points.
4) Miss St? red zone fumble & scored 12 points.
5) Colorado? red zone fumble & scored 27 points.
6) Ark? Int & scored 24 points.
7) Auburn? 31 points but almost none in the 2nd-4th quarters.

Lots for Bobo to work on.

?

July 12th, 2011
2:17 pm

time for King to make the donuts

?

July 12th, 2011
2:19 pm

I don’t trust any kid from Columbus until he proves it at the college level.

gbal

July 12th, 2011
2:21 pm

Vance –

And do you think in that tech game Bobo made the decission on his own at the half to go conservative? Im just asking, but I dont think so. I’m thinking CMR would be the one to make that call.

If Bobo did make the call, CMR should have stood up as asked what the he11 he was doing after the first series or two… and had him get back to what was working!!

gbal

July 12th, 2011
2:23 pm

HEAD Coach …and by the way 132nd and just as relevent as 1st!

ozzfest

July 12th, 2011
2:29 pm

ORSEN CHARLES………the dude could win the Heisman this year…IF Bobo does not botch it.

Yes, seriously.

JB

July 12th, 2011
2:30 pm

I hope Bobo has saved some money. Being a HS coach with a wife and 5 kids is where he is headed. A head coach in HS makes more than a Div 2 OC. The heat is on.

Dawg Gone

July 12th, 2011
2:33 pm

@PTreeDawg that offense came back from 2 scores down at half with a rookie QB the pick was going for the winning score if I remember…my point is if you score 30 your defense shouldn’t’ give up 30+ .

Ballcoach

July 12th, 2011
2:33 pm

Couple of thoughts. One-lot more concerned about losing olinemen than king. Unless your Herschel it matters most who is doing the blocking up front rather than who is toting it. BTW, Bill-plz no more comparison ever putting Herschel and Crowell is the same sentence. Two-The one thing we will miss with King is his overall knowledge of the offense. He was average at best but the idea of him mentoring Crowell is hilarious. Three-get off Bobo-the name of the game is putting points on the board, not being creative.

JB

July 12th, 2011
2:33 pm

Carlton Thomas between the tackles on 3rd and 9 is a morale booster.

puppydawg

July 12th, 2011
2:33 pm

Bad news: Another poor season by the Dawgs will lead to CMR’s ouster.
Good news: When CMR is gone, we will be looking for a new OC.

LagDawg

July 12th, 2011
2:34 pm

If we are depending on Bobo’s creative playcalling, we are in trouble. With proper preparation with a qualified OC this would not be a problem with a freshman starting, but with Bobo as the OC it is very scary. Bobo does not do a good job on game preparation or adjustments throughout the game. He has to do a better job on calling plays or Richt has to replace him. I don’t care who he is married to. This is about winning at UGA, not trying to keep the inlaws happy. If they don’t like the decision to fire him, then too bad. Yes the OL has to perform but, it is the OCs job to get the offense ready to play and he does not do a good job. Bobo knows how to make excuses and that’s about it.

JB

July 12th, 2011
2:37 pm

You are correct lagdawg. When they interview Bobo after a loss, the offense ends up with tire tracks all over them………..From being thrown under a bus!

JB

July 12th, 2011
2:40 pm

I will give Meyer credit for last year. Florida was playing awful and not moving the ball. He shook up that offense during the by week and the playbook and managed to beat us. Come on Bobo, add some wrinkles with all that speed.

Reebok

July 12th, 2011
2:41 pm

Tech fan here, please old off on the abuse for a sec…I’d say the only indispensible member of UGA’s offense is Aaron Murray…if he goes down w/ an injury, the Dogs are well and truly $cr*wd. IMHO, of course.

JB

July 12th, 2011
2:43 pm

Good comment Reebok……..But that’s true with almost any Div 1 team.

greg

July 12th, 2011
2:44 pm

BOOBOO calls the plays so it’s in his hands!! Hope he will use all the targets they have even the tight ends for a change

NC Dawg

July 12th, 2011
2:45 pm

I don’t think this situation should be any different than a season where a player has graduated and they have to be replaced. The coaches have plenty of time to plan an adaption to the change. Players don’t come back every year. Thank the Lord we had a great recruitment and in this case (King) we’ll have a quality player in Crowell for a replacement. Nothing wrong with that.

Jeffro Bodeen

July 12th, 2011
2:45 pm

Bobo will do what he does best……underachieve and underachieve some more! I think he’s probably thinking about using Isaiah as a run blocker for 3 years in order to give him ample time to underachieve, and work up enough off-field issues so that he can quietly transfer to a D-II school. Bobo gotta go-go!

chazzo

July 12th, 2011
2:55 pm

Georgia will always produce on offense. The D is the key. End of story.

DawginLex

July 12th, 2011
2:57 pm

Y’all are dead wrong about bobo as usual.

Defense drops its PPG allowed from 22 to 14 and NO ONE will complain about bobo or the offense.

UGA '05

July 12th, 2011
2:58 pm

to answer the question eariler about why we reach to the RB to fake the handoff is because Bobo wants the defense to see the ball being “handed off”. He wants the defense to bite on that action.