While I prefer never to begin any essay or treatise with anything negative, I realize that images sometimes become entrenched and often are inaccurate.
Dean Martin, for example, was not an alcoholic. The glass you often saw in his hand contained apple juice. Umpires can take solace in the fact that, however bad their calls might be, they are never blind as a bat. That is a big misnomer since bats are not blind. It’s like suggesting that Marjorie Green Taylor is a surrogate “Miss Manners” and that Donald Trump is a modest man.
How could a true Georgia fan not look at the life and career of Bulldog offensive coordinator Mike Bobo and not come away with a positive view: Georgia born and Georgia bred? Graduate of the University of Georgia. Loves UGA. Has earned the highest of respect among his peers as a play caller and quarterback coach.
His teams always put up points on the scoreboard—in record numbers. Like an average of 35 points per game in his prime years at UGA. When you peruse the offensive statistics of those years, take the time to review the record. Take 2010, for example. It wasn’t a good year for either side of the ball; the “Dogs scored 24 points against Arkansas while the defense gave up 31; the Colorado game in Boulder was one in which the offense posted 27 points, certainly not bad, but the defense allowed 29.
Georgia scored 28 points against Alabama in the SEC championship game in 2012, but Alabama, playing handoff football for the most part in the second half, won 32-28. Aaron Murray gallantly led the Bulldogs deep into the Tide red zone and came within one short pass completion of a touchdown which would have sent him and the Dogs to the national championship game against weak sister, Notre Dame, for the old BCS Championship.
Bobo’s offense scored 31 points at Clemson in 2013, but the Dawgs lost 38-31. Score 31 points, and you should win the game. It became elementary: For Georgia to win in those years, Bobo had to outscore the competition. Not much chance of getting an assist from a defense that was as porous in big games as Swiss cheese.
It was the mantra of the offensive coaches in recent years to play complimentary football. Complement the defense and vice versa. Play sound, fundamental football. Play recklessly on offense, and it can put the defense at a big disadvantage, especially in critical games.
Mike Bobo learned about quarterbacking fundamentals, reading defenses, and play calling from his dad, George, whom high school coaches and doting fathers of QB prospects still seek out for advice and consultation today.
Timing is everything in life, and I believe that Mike Bobo will be coaching the best talent collectively he has ever coached. There were high-water marks with quarterbacks Matthew Stafford and Aaron Murray at Georgia under Bobo, but not the supporting cast that was comparable to what Bulldog rosters showcase today.
None of this is to suggest that it is finger-snapping easy for the Bulldogs to pick up where they left off in Los Angeles. The competition is too blessed.
And while I have always felt Kirby Smart as a coach is special, there are no guarantees. A perusal of the record book reminds us that when one gets to the mountaintop, it is more difficult to stay there than it is to get there. It is a fact that winning a spate of championships seems to be cyclical.
To maintain high-octane offensive production, there must be recruiting acumen, player development, and a winning culture. Bobo aligns perfectly with the head coach’s objectives. He can recruit and he can coach, and with a few propitious bounces of the ball, Georgia partisans can expect to keep on ringing the chapel bell.
There was so much behind the scenes that influenced Bobo’s decision to leave Athens in the first place. Colorado State, a fine institution located in a very pretty part of the country, does not have a great number of players in the state from which to recruit and does not enjoy a championship tradition.
The increase in pay, however, was significant. Bobo had a chance to run his own program and began his first head coaching job with the greatest of due diligence. Sometimes things don’t work out, but if you love the game, you keep your nose to the grindstone.
Mike Bobo is a very smart football coach. He works hard, has a competitor’s heart, and is imbued with a great love of alma mater. The Bulldog offense is in good hands.