Good day, UGA. Welcome to your one-stop shop for all the relevant UGA football news and takes every Monday through Friday. In today’s edition, we look at one projection that has TCU favored in the Liberty Bowl and Georgia’s exclusion from the coaches All-SEC teams. If you’re looking for things to listen to this morning, look no further than the Bitter Southerner’s Best Southern Albums of 2016. You can’t go wrong with anything on the list, but Charles Bradley is a personal favorite,
What S&P+ says about the Liberty Bowl
One of my favorite statistics in college football is Bill Connelly’s S&P+. Although it’s still a fairly obscure stat, it’s become a more popular way to look at college football over the last few years. Many of you are probably familiar with it. For those who aren’t, you can find a detailed description here, but the long and short of it is that S&P+ uses metrics that measure things such as explosiveness, efficiency and field position, then boils them down to an adjusted scoring margin. It’s a single number that encompasses many of the factors that make a team good or bad. It evolves as the season progresses and, by the end of the year, it gives you a good idea of where teams rank against one another.
It can also be used to project how two teams will fare against each other, and has been incredibly precise in regards to Georgia as recently as the Georgia Tech. S&P+ projected the Jackets to win, 27.5-27. They won, 28-27.
So, it pains me to say, S&P+ is not predicting good things for Georgia in the Liberty Bowl. Based on UGA’s -0.6 and TCU’s 7.1 S&P+, the Bulldogs are expected to lose by 7.7 points.
Of course, this does not doom Georgia to defeat. The Bulldogs actually beat their two opponents with the highest season-ending S&P+, Auburn and North Carolina. But it is something to keep in mind. I’ve heard some fans speak confidently about beating TCU with ease because of the Frogs’ 6-6 record in a supposedly weak Big 12. There is no doubt Georgia has a solid chance to win this game, and you won’t be faulted if you think Georgia should win this game. Going off what we’ve seen from both teams this year, though, TCU goes into the game as the favorite.
No Georgia Bulldogs on All-SEC teams
For the first time in more than a quarter-century, no Georgia players were named to the coaches All-SEC first or second teams. The AP All-SEC team is released later this week, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it was the first time since 1959 no Georgia Bulldogs made that list. Even if the East is down enough to be considered one of, if not the worst, Power Five conferences, there still is individual talent all over the conference in a season when Georgia doesn’t have much individual star power.