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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Mike Bobo talks about the busy offseason, and where it leaves the offense

Georgia offensive coordinator Mike Bobo spent some time speaking to the media on Wednesday morning. A few players are coming in next. While we wait, the highlights from Bobo:

- He admitted that the attrition since spring practice “unnerves you a little bit. They always seem to happen when you’re on vacation.” But he saw it as opening more opportunities for people.

“Truth be told, I’m still excited about what we have coming back,” he said.

- The coaches aren’t allowed to have any football contact with the players during the summer. (Bobo ran into Isaiah Crowell the other day as the ballyhooed tailback was going into a study hall. That’s allowed, but quizzing Crowell on the playbook or watching film of workouts is verboten.)

The strength and conditioning staff has been working with players, but the coaches can’t even talk to those staff members about players.

”You get zero (access),” Bobo said. “You can’t watch film. They don’t film it. You can’t talk to a strength coach about whether a guy’s showing up, or ‘Hey Aaron how’s a guy doing.’ … It’s very frustrating sometimes.”

- The offensive line depth is obviously poor, but Bobo was taking the optimistic route.

“We’re not very deep. But you only need five,” Bobo said. “I think we played ’02 with only five linemen the whole year. And one other year we played with six. You’d like to have more depth. But I feel good about what we have.”

He feels good about the three seniors – center Ben Jones and tackles Cordy Glenn and Justin Anderson – and he also mentioned Chris Burnette (slated to start at guard) and backup Kolton Houston. The team is also getting good reports from the training staff on Dallas Lee, who missed most of spring practice.

- There aren’t any other imminent defense-to-offense moves, according to Bobo. While several freshmen were signed with the idea of playing both ways (Malcolm Mitchell, Nick Marshall and Damian Swann) early on in practice the concentration will be on them learning their base positions.

- Bobo seemed genuinely excited about the potential of Richard Samuel, now back at tailback after a redshirt year at linebacker. Bobo watched every carry Samuel had during the 2008 and 2009 seasons, and it reminded him that he was a hard, physical and fast runner, who had the ability to break tackles.

“The guy ran hard and physical,” Bobo said. “There were some times that guys turned down hitting him because of how big he was and how hard he was running.”

- As for Isaiah Crowell, Bobo expressed the hope that fans (and the media) would give Crowell some space early on.

“There’s gonna be a lot of pressure on this young man. There’s gonna be a lot of attention from fans and from you guys. Hopefully you guys won’t be able to talk to him (for awhile),” Bobo said, smiling at the media. “The main thing is you’ve gotta go to work and you’ve gotta earn your way. That’s what coaches always try to teach freshman: be yourself, and find your way here.”

- Ken Malcome, the redshirt freshman, was kind of a forgotten man. He was listed even behind walk-on Brandon Harton in the post-spring depth chart, but Bobo attributed that to Malcome’s groin injury.

“Ken is a guy that we felt good about going into spring ball. He just had injuries. I’m not sure but I think he missed about 10 practices,” Bobo said. “I think it was more of an injury thing about why he was behind Harton. Harton … Now Ken is going to be given an opportunity this fall to see what he can do. I’m still excited about Ken.”

- At fullback, it’s still basically a competition between Bruce Figgins and Zander Ogletree, with walk-on Dustin Royston also in the mix.

But Jay Rome could also get a look in the backfield, in the same kind of hybrid fullback-tight end role that is envisioned for Figgins. Rome’s path at tight end would appear to be blocked by Orson Charles, Aron White and even Arthur Lynch, but Bobo said this when asked if they’d try to find a way to get Rome on:

“I don’t care what the depth says. If a guy shows he can make plays and be productive, you’ve gotta play them.”

- Finally, Bobo is also the quarterbacks coach. But he only got one question about the actual quarterback, which is probably good news. And Bobo says Aaron Murray is still working as hard as he did last year.

“The hype and accolades really haven’t changed this kid,” Bobo said. “I feel like he’s gonna have another outstanding year.”

I didn't run every comment. So if there's any ground that went uncovered that you're curious about, ask a question below and I'll try to help. - Seth


BulldogBen said...

" As for Isaiah Crowell, Bobo expressed the hope that fans (and the media) would give Crowell some space early on"

Good luck with that Bobo. I can't remember a more anticipated moment than when this kid gets his first carry.

Jimmy said...

Someone has a short memory.

BulldogBen said...

Okay Jimmy I'll bite. Who would be more?

Stafford? He doesn't even get to play unless Tereshinski hurts his ankle. It's close though.

Knowshon? No one knew how good he was going to be and was not as highly ranked as what Crowell is/was. We also had Thomas Brown and Kregg Lumpkin

I remember a big anticipation for Jasper Sanks but we all saw how that went. AJ Green?

I don't think any of those guys were going to be expected to shoulder the load as much as this kid is being built up to do. Fair or unfair.

I honestly think Herschel is a decent comparison. Totally unfair but it is what it is.