StLGator

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  • #46142

    StLGator
    Participant

    We didn’t have to wait till summer for the wise guys in Vegas to post their odds of winning the 2020 CFP NC. They came out, placing the Gators just about where I thought they’d land based on comparing returning talent & experience:

    CLEMSON 2-1
    Alabama 4-1
    LSU 9-2
    Ohio State 7-1
    Georgia 10-1
    Florida 15-1
    Auburn 22-1
    Oklahoma 22-1
    Notre Dame 25-1
    Texas 25-1
    Penn State 30-1
    Michigan 30-1

    >>>Odds via Caesars Sportsbook

    Anyone who believes 2020 is going to be the Year of the Gator, should place their bets now. 15 to 1 odds are not too shabby!

    The funny thing is where the wise guys rated that P5 fraud, Oklahoma’s odds.

  • #46125

    StLGator
    Participant

    With another NC Game coming up tomorrow night that is once again being played between two teams with composite recruiting rankings inside the Top 10, it’s worth further discussing the point that recruiting success is destiny in the 21st Century, especially in the SEC. On Gator 6’s Next Year THE YEAR thread we had the following thoughtful comments yesterday:

    NashvilleGator: On roster composite talent ratings, Clemson won their 2016 NC with the 9th ranked roster, albeit with a difference maker at quarterback. Believe it or not, this year was their first top 5 class.

    As for much ballyhooed “talent gaps,” to my thinking it’s not 4-stars versus 5-stars so much as it’s about quality roster depth… and Mullen is getting that issue fixed…

    Gator6: As far as the 5* estimates vs the 4* estimates and the 3* estimates — and that’s exactly what they are in my opinion, ESTIMATES OF POTENTIAL AT THIS LEVEL — our friend Gator65 tho not on here for some time, I think has nailed it as (1) 32 total 5*s awarded, defined as a score between 98-100; (2) 300 4*s awarded, defined as a score between 90-97; and the remainder of the Top 10% nationally awarded 3*s (c corresponding scores between 80-89).

    The two salient points about the SEC that I’ve done a poor job of making are:

    1. When great coaching and player development is eliminated as a difference maker, all that’s left is talent difference. The SEC, as a conference, has the best coaching in the nation, period. The days of superior coaching alone winning an SEC Championship ended with the departure of SOS at the end of the 2001 season. So, only superior coaching AND superior recruiting determines SEC Champions nowadays. With no SEC title, it’s nigh on impossible to make the playoff field, as long as it’s limited to four teams and your name is not Alabama. There’s just too much pressure on the CFP committee to select other P5 conference champs ahead of SEC second place finishers, no matter how good they may be.

    2. With mobile phone reporting and online publication dramatically reducing the cost of journalism, recruiting services have developed an effective system for collecting, evaluating, ranking and reporting recruiting information on the top 500 high school football players every season. They may be deficient at evaluating what’s “inside” any individual recruit’s head or heart (e.g. Trask vs. Franks,) but they’re undeniably accurate at evaluating the aggregate ranking of complete 4-year recruiting classes.

    In the 5-year CFP era, NO SEC team with a composite 247 recruiting class ranked outside the Top 5 has made the CFP field. That fact is not likely to change until/unless the NCAA expands the playoff field to 8 teams so non SEC Conference champs can regularly land at-large invitations. SEC recruiting, coaching and player development at LSU, Alabama and UGA is just too good. The Gators should join those three in 2021, but until then… the odds against their winning the SEC title are long enough to make them a bad bet.

  • #46092

    StLGator
    Participant

    Here’s a fun update out of Ugly Dawg country. Their best returning OL (Mays) just transferred to Tennessee after his family filed a $3 million lawsuit against UGA for loss of his right pinkie, pain and suffering.

    That leaves the Dawgs with just one returning OL starter in 2020. That goes with the loss of their starting QB (Fromm) to the NFL draft, leaving them with a true freshman QB in 2020. They also lose their starting RB (Swift) and their best WR (Cager) to the NFL draft.

    A troubled UGA offense in 2019 now appears to be totally dysfunctional for 2020. Perhaps, the football gods are going to smile on the Gators next season. Their road to the SEC East Title is now clearer than it’s been since 2016.

  • #46195

    StLGator
    Participant

    The sports media has a desperate need to legitimize all the P5 conference champs. Reality is that with the exception of Clemson and Ohio State, ALL the serious contenders for the NC are in the SEC.

    Oklahoma and Oregon did NOT belong in the Top 5, at least not in 2019.

  • #46161

    StLGator
    Participant

    Georgia is beatable in 2020. I’m not worried about them. That’ll be a pick-em game the Trask led Gators can win.

    On the other hand, Alabama scares the heck out of me. Youth on defense, injuries to key players and plain bad luck ganged up on the Tide in 2019 and the wise guys in the media have been hounding Saban every day since their loss to Auburn on whether they’ve finally come down to earth. You could see in his eyes at the NCG that he’s on a slow burn to prove a point next season… with the most talented top-to-bottom squad in CFB!

    The Gators won’t be getting the Tide early next season, while they’re getting their roll going. They’ll get them in Atlanta at the end, when they’ll be the only obstacle standing between Saban and another invitation to the playoffs.

    Pity the Gators then. They might be 12-0 at that point next season and STILL not be good enough to win THAT game!

  • #46154

    StLGator
    Participant

    Every game on that schedule is winnable. Tennessee in Knoxville will be a bigger challenge in 2020 than last couple of seasons. LSU in the Swamp, without Burrow and half his posse, is less a challenge than they were this season. Ole Miss in the Grove, with The Brat head coach, is a wild card and the Gators don’t play well there, but it’s winnable. All the others, but one, are Gator wins IF they just show up mentally and I don’t see CDM allowing a let-down.

    So, as you say, the 2020 regular season will come down to the Cocktail Party. Do the Ugly Dawgs have an answer at QB? Win that winnable game and the Gators have a real shot at arriving in Atlanta 12-0, led by a senior All-SEC QB, just as they did in 2009. And there, just as in 2009, the Evil Empire will be waiting for them… with THE #1 composite recruited squad in ALL of college football… AND a really ticked off Emperor Satan, lighting a fire under their collective rear ends!

    I really like our Gators chances next season, but I wouldn’t bet on them winning THAT game… even with 6 or 65’s money!!!

  • #46127

    StLGator
    Participant

    UCF’s ongoing delusion is proof positive that fake news is alive and well, at least in Central Florida. 😜

  • #46122

    StLGator
    Participant

    Too much is made of 5* recruits in terms of their potential contributions to championship teams. In reality, there aren’t that many of them, they’re spread around to various teams and a fair share of them are busts.

    Never forget that Martez Ivey and Cece Jefferson were both 5* recruits in 2015, nationally ranked 2nd and 7th overall that year. Both were good Gator players, but neither turned out to be a world beater.

    Landing 5* recruits is primarily a marketing advantage for a college program, especially if they commit early. It signals to all the 4* recruits in that class that your program is one they want to seriously consider committing to.

    A team made up of mostly 4* recruits with some 5*’s sprinkled in will beat a team made up of mostly 3* recruits with some 4*’s sprinkled in most of the time IF both teams are equally well coached. For proof, I give you the Gators’ 1-3 record vs. LSU and UGA in the short CDM era.

    Nobody argues CDM can develop and coach up his players, but the talent gap he had at MSU and inherited at UF has been too wide to make up with good coaching when the opponent also has good coaching. It’s the reason CDM left MSU, where he was NEVER going to fill his squad with mostly 4* recruits. At UF he has a fighting chance to close the talent gap with UGA, LSU and Alabama.

  • #46107

    StLGator
    Participant

    Well, here’s to hoping you get to see at least three more Gator natties and we both get to hear SOS tell another roomful of Gators that you STILL can’t spell Citrus without UT!

  • #46102

    StLGator
    Participant

    You know 6, as my favorite radio talk personality is fond of saying, I live in “Realville.” He’s “the mayor,” I’m just a “resident!”

    In Realville, the Ugly Dawgs will be a thorn in the Gators’ side every season Smart runs their program from now on. The best I expect for the Gators going forward is to get their “fair share” of SEC East titles, which will be no better than 40%, with UGA getting another 40% and the last 20% split among the other 5 teams.

    A better success rate than that would not be “realistic.”

  • #46086

    StLGator
    Participant

    I’m getting off topic here, but the Gator pass coverage breakdowns in 2019, especially on 3rd and long, were due mainly to lack of athletic talent at safety and, to a lesser extent, LB. Their cover guys in the middle of the field could not cover talented receivers one-on-one when the QB escaped the pass rush and extended plays.

    The Gators’ should be better in coverage in 2020 as the more athletic CDM recruits gain experience and replace the less athletic Mac recruits.

  • #46074

    StLGator
    Participant

    “Clear waivers!” Now that’s funny! 😂🤣😂. You need to post more often ag8tor!

    You also have a point on the value of Trask’s arm strength vs. his ability to find open receivers all over the field, as Burrow did this season. However, you saw in the OB how the good 2020 opponents will deal with Trask next season.

    LSU and UGA have MUCH better D’s than UVA and IF the Gators want to improve on 11-2 and no SEC Championship, they MUST improve their OL and Trask must complete some 20+ yard-long passes behind the crowd that’ll gather between the LOS and 15 yards downfield.

  • #46072

    StLGator
    Participant

    There were two remaining areas of deficient play for the Gators toward the end of 2019: OL and the middle of the defensive backfield. The OL’s run blocking appeared to improve a little in the OB game, where UVA sold out to stop Trask and his WR posse and Perine made them pay for it. The defensive backfield, on the other hand, was a dumpster fire for 60 minutes that must be addressed in the offseason.

    The WR corps in 2020 will be talented, but thin. The starters will be Grimes and Copeland as flankers and either Toney or Pitts in the slot. Backups will be Wells and incoming freshmen Henderson, Fraziars and a slew of unknowns. Kyle Trask will be able to work with that bunch IF they don’t suffer serious injuries.

  • #46067

    StLGator
    Participant

    Joe, college football is a VERY physical game. God-given size, strength, speed and quickness is not allocated equally. Programs that collect the best natural talent and coach it up well will beat programs that collect second best talent and coach it up well.

    The CFP top 5 in 2019 were LSU, Ohio St, Clemson, Oklahoma and UGA. The composite 247 top 5 recruiting classes in 2019 were Alabama, Ohio St, UGA, USCw and LSU. Oklahoma and Clemson 247 classes were #8 and #9. None of the top 5 finishers were outside the top 10 in recruiting and that has become commonplace this decade.

    The only top 5 recruiting class that ended up ranked outside the CFP top 10 this season, USCw, is a shining examples of poor coaching and player development. Alabama just had a rash of injuries to key players and will be back with a vengeance in 2020.

    So, within bands, composite recruiting rankings do define CFP rankings. The numbers above don’t lie. In 2020, no team with composite talent ranked outside the top 10 will end up in the CFP Final 4. Blame Coach Butter-teeth for that.

  • #46061

    StLGator
    Participant

    Toney is “cursed” with tremendous potential and a golden opportunity. Let’s see what he does with them.

    IF he learns to run precise routes and catch the ball on the dead run, something he’s yet to show us he can do under game conditions, he would become the starting slot receiver. Kyle Pitts will then either split plays with him or bulk up and remain a TE. Grimes and Copeland will be the split ends because they already have that skill set well honed.

    Imagine what Trask will be to do with those four going at max potential?

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