Note: This is the second part of a three-part series with Huston Mason on Georgia moving forward with Mike Bobo as OC. Mason was the last UGA quarterback to play under Bobo in 2014.
ATHENS —Hutson Mason has a pretty good idea what the Georgia quarterbacks room will sound like with Mike Bobo in charge, even if he’s not exactly sure what the offense will look like.
“You see those fiery Kirby Smart pregame speeches out there, and that was Bobo 10 years ago, ask any former player, it was just that the stuff never got leaked,” said Mason, quarterback of the highest scoring Bulldogs’ team in history.
“Coach Bobo was a fantastic motivator, and he would have you ready to run through the wall,” he said. “Kirby and Coach Bobo are two of the most passionate guys you could ever have, because they both played at Georgia.”
Bobo was promoted to offensive coordinator last week when Todd Monken accepted the NFL offensive coordinator job with the Baltimore Ravens.
Mason, now an on-air talent for 680 The Fan and select ESPN games, expects Bobo to have success with the Bulldogs this season.
The Georgia offense will look different — but it was going to, anyway, as key personnel has changed.
“You hear people say, ‘it won’t be the same system,’ well, what system did Monken run?” Mason said. “It was spread with Pro (-style) principles, and that’s what Coach Bobo has always done, too.
“Really, Coach Bobo is a bit more Pro Style than what we’ve seen from Monken with Stetson (Bennett).”
The difference between then and what UGA will likely see now, as Mason pointed out, is that Bobo leaned on a running game in 2014 that featured Todd Gurley, Nick Chubb and Sony Michel.
Of course, there was also a fullback back then as Georgia was perfectly comfortable running over defenses while leading the SEC in rushing that season while Mason set a school record for completion percentage and was second in the SEC in QB rating.
“I think there will be some elements of Coach Bobo’s offense, but you’re not going to see a fullback out there,” Mason said. “Fullbacks aren’t part of football between the 20-yard lines anymore.
“But every play caller has his flavor and his own stamp.”
That’s why it’s more likely than not Georgia will be lined up with one back, one tight end and three receivers more than UGA fans saw last season.
There will be some double tight end sets, as the Bulldogs have recruited that position well.
If Bobo had a 6-foot-7, 285-pound tight end like Darnell Washington -- like Monken did -- the formation would be used much, much more.
Smart, of course, will remain a part of the process and provide some in-game direction from the sideline.
Mason agreed with his former head coach, Mark Richt, that one of the most important things is that Bobo knows the personnel and speaks the same offensive language.
“In a situation like this, you want to keep as much the same as possible,” Mason said. “You want to have the same verbiage.”
Mason is among those who believe the plan has been in place for Bobo to replace Monken since Smart brought him back on staff before last season as an analyst.
“I’m sure they had conversations about how Coach Bobo would embrace a role until that time,” Mason said. “Monken had been interviewing for jobs at the end of the last two seasons, so you kinda of knew it was just a matter of time.”
Beyond Monken’s flirtations with the NFL and track record of never staying in one place too long, Mason took note of Bobo’s duties.
“You saw him in a role where he was doing some self-scouting for Monken during the season, and then he was involved in some game planning,” Mason said. “So when they announced Monken was leaving, I wasn’t surprised to see Coach Bobo get the job at all given his successful track record and relationship with Kirby.”