ATHENS — The struggles of Georgia’s offense have been well-documented, and Mark Richt isn’t pretending it’s not an issue. He’s also pointing most of the blame at himself and his coaches.
On his radio show Monday night, Richt was asked about the state of the offense, and started out by pointing all the different things that have gone wrong. Then he said the ultimate responsibility lies with the coaches.
Here was Richt’s full response:
“There’s a lot of things that go into it. Some of it is just the fact that we turned the ball over at some inopportune times, that has kept us from scoring. There have been some times where we maybe didn’t pass protect as well as we could have. There’s been times where we maybe didn’t pass protect as well as we could have. There’s been times when quarterbacks haven’t hit their targets. There have been times guys have dropped the ball. The execution overall just hasn’t been consistent. There’s been moments of time where we’ve done everything the way it oughta be done. But there’s been too many guys taking turns not quite getting it done, whether it’s a dropped ball or a ball not thrown just right, or missing protection here and there.
“But that’s coaching. That’s us. The players certainly have some accountability in that. But it’s everybody doing their job, staying focused and down after down after down on a consistent basis executing. We just have not executed well enough. And to me that always go back to us as coaches, just not getting them to the point where they can perform on a consistent basis.”
Georgia ranks 83rd in the country in total offense, as measured by total yards, and 76th in scoring offense, though that has help from defensive and special teams scores.
Scott Howard, the show’s host, then pointed out that injuries might have something to do with it too.
“Well yeah, Nick getting hurt didn’t help,” Richt said of the All-SEC tailback. “If you probably look at the games before he got hurt, and the yards per game, and look at the points while he was in there, it was a different story when he left.”
Chubb was hurt on the first offensive play of the Tennessee game. In the previous five games Georgia averaged 452.8 total yards per game, though just 299 in the loss to Alabama. In the six games since then, including the Tennessee game, Georgia is averaging 318.5 total yards per game.
“Football’s more than a one-man show, but when you have an electric back like him, or a Todd Gurley or Knowshon Moreno, or the guys we have had over the years it tends to really make the engine go,” Richt said. “Not to say that Sony and the rest of the young men haven’t done a good job. But Nick obviously has been a guy that could turn certain plays instead of getting four you get 14. Instead of getting 14 you get 74, whatever it might be. Losing him and losing a couple other guys here and there didn’t help either.”