Herschel and Boss bark about:
- Their reactions to the hire of Scott Cochran as Special Teams Coordinator
- Where Coach Cochran's hire could have the biggest impact
- What the hire says about Kirby Smart's mindset about the program
- G-Day kickoff time and broadcast details
Go Dawgs, Sic 'Em!
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Scott Cochran YEAHHH
Welcome to the blog, the dogs podcast. I'm Herschel Gurley here as always with my co host boss, dog, Boss barchetta people. Welcome back, everybody.
hope you all enjoyed our interview with Dr. Steven Beecham. Today we're gonna touch on the hiring of Scott Cochran and everything to do about g day.
Yeah, let's just jump hot right out the gate here with with the hiring a coach Cochran. I don't know about you, boss, but it kind of knocked me off my seat. I was the last thing that I was expecting. When the announcement came through on Twitter. I will tell you the immediate thought that went through my mind was the video of Kirby after the Rose Bowl, screaming out boom with a gigantic expletive after it. That's pretty much what I thought about when I saw the news. Just kind of like him doing a big jump in the air and a fist bump. But what were your thoughts when you heard the news?
Well, my first thought was,
yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah,
is great catchphrase. HB t fd. So family friendly show, so can't really say that yours. But great hire. I mean, you know, we don't really know what he's going to be as a as an on field coach. But you know, I'm not really on this whole. He didn't hire him to hurt Alabama. He's been trying to get Cochran since he got the job. First, he wanted to miss strength conditioning coach, and the funds weren't there to bring him in at that point in time in 16. So he got his guide this year, Cochrane obviously is looking was looking to move up to an on field coach and Saban was not prepared to offer him that and Kirby was so good for Kirby good for Cochrane. But this came out of left field. I mean, I know, behind the scenes, obviously, it didn't. But there were no rumors of this, there was no talk of this. All the rumors pointed to either a quarterback coach or another defensive coach to even out the offensive in the defensive side. And all the talk that everybody that you heard was, Hartley was going to take over special teams, there was no talk of hiring another special teams coordinator. So I was completely blindsided by it. And I mean, I think it's a great hire, obviously, he's not gonna be doing strength and conditioning, Sinclair was a great strength and conditioning coach, but to think that they're not going to talk and share ideas is asinine, they're obviously going to talk, there's obviously going to be idea shared. And that's not getting nothing but hope, the strength and conditioning program, and he's just a great motivator of men. And he's a great liaison for lack of a better term between the players and the head, man. I mean, that's what he did for 13 years. And if you see the response from Alabama players past and present, they're torn up about it.
Yeah, I kinda want to touch on a couple things with the first one is there's been a lot of hand wringing about his announcement as having this own field roll. It's a special teams coordinator. And I don't think there's a lot to that, you know, people keep talking about, oh, he's never been an on field coach, and he doesn't have the experience and X, Y, and Z. And I feel like if you've been involved in football, the way he has been involved, whether it be at LSU, as a grad assistant, and then an assistant with saving in savings run there, whether it be his time, working with the Hornets, whether it be his time in Alabama, the exposure to the game, I think is plenty. And my understanding from the reading that I've done about it is that while he was at Alabama, he ran the scout team for all the special teams stuff anyways, he's out of practice every day. So I don't know, I just don't see where that's that big of a deal. I think the piece of it that's valuable that's not really getting talked about a lot is all these x players and guys that had were just at Alabama this last year at the combine have sung His praises, you know, talked about how important he was to Alabama to talk about important was the program, if guys love him that much. And guys bought into him that much. And we're talking with the guy in the program, the strength conditioning guy that by all accounts across America is the guy that spends the most time with players within the separate programs. Are you telling me that's not going to play and live in rooms with with kids all across America on the recruiting trail? I think that part of it's gotten a little bit undersold as well, obviously, he's an unknown commodity when it comes to those things. But I'm really interested to see what comes of that. I think that's a compelling piece of this. The other thing that I think is interesting from your standpoint and my standpoint about where this came from Seth Emerson of the athletic spoke this week on his podcast, the damn good podcast, which you should check out their stuff is great that he called to have his sources called in mesh it's two of his sources. After getting a heads up from the athletics Alabama writer Aaron Suttles, I believe is his name, telling him Hey, man, I think this is gonna come down. I think George is gonna hire Scott Cochran. And he said Two folks that are really good sources of his plugged into the program, essentially both texted him back and we're like you're smoking crack. There's absolutely nothing to this. He said that was one hour before the official announcement to tell you who outside of Kirby and probably the decision makers was actually in the loop on this thing. So obviously, he was presented with his opportunity. And he took it his wife, Mary Beth was a basketball player and as they say, shooter shoot, well, he took his shot. I think another tidbit was Lane Kiffin apparently was trying to hire him as a position coach as well. I'm not sure what position coach. But I read in one of the articles that Lane Kiffin was trying to take that take that spot as well. So two guys corbijn Lane that have been in the alabam program, know, Scott, know what he does know, Coach Cochran, both one of them, and we're both willing to give him position coach slots. So I think that says a lot in and of itself.
I agree. And as a strength and conditioning coach, you are, like you said, You are the person who spends the most time with the players, you are with him pretty much on a daily basis in the weight room, and you're not just a strength and conditioning coach, you're a therapist, you're a father figure, you're a brother, you're a shoulder to cry on, you're everything to that person, because you are the person in the room who is there, most for them. And on top of that, you know, to your point, being on the field, and in the program for 13 years, you're gonna pick up stuff by osmosis, just from being there and being on the field. But another part that I think is being undersold on this is being a special teams coordinator. At any program, you have your hand in each position group, because each position group plays special teams. So I mean, we saw you know, firsthand when you and I were at Vanderbilt, this past year, first kickoff of the game, we see 44 out there, and our first thought is, is that Trayvon Walker, on kickoff, why is Trayvon Walker on kickoff? Why is, you know, five star defensive tackle on kickoff team, you don't expect to see that. But special teams, very important. Put your best athletes on there, Scott Cochran is going to have his hand in each position group, his mark is going to be all of the program just like it was in the strength and conditioning, it's not going to be as much because he's not going to have the day to day, you know, time with the players like he did, because he's an on field coach, he's going to have recruiting responsibilities now. But he's still going to have his hand in each position group, which I think is being undersold a lot.
Well, I was just gonna say, too, I think the other piece of that is, lest we forget, it wasn't until 2017, that there was a 10th on field coach to begin with. So a lot of programs coach, Rick's program included, did not have a special teams coordinator. So much to our chagrin. Yeah. So I mean, I think some of that's overblown, I think that the entire coaching staff is going to have their hand in special teams. So so that piece of it doesn't bother me, I think this was an opportunity with that 10th slot with that open slot, after Coleen fountain both left that you get the best possible person on the market. And however it happened, whether through back channel conversations or whatever it may be, Kirby, obviously had some conversations with with Coach Cochran, and seemed like this was something that could work and he said, You know what, this is too big of an asset not to add. Now, obviously, the jury's still out, and we'll see what happens with it. But it certainly can't hurt to have someone with that gravitas, that experience and that reputation added to your staff.
Yeah. And also to your point, you know, about playing well in the living room. You see all the videos of him. And I mean, there you do a Google search or a YouTube search. There are plenty of videos of him at Alabama warm ups, and he's walking around yelling and dancin. And, you know, I mean, he's a younger guy, he's energetic, he has just so much like you said, that's gonna play very well, in the live room with these young kids. 40 year old bald white guy is gonna be out there and dancing with the players and got a lot of energy. He's very much like Kirby, he relates to these guys. And you can't undersell that when it comes to recruiting. And I'm not gonna go as strong as herb street and say that this was a coup. But it was a great hire by Kirby It was a great hire. I'm not gonna say that this is gonna, you know, sink the Alabama ship or anything like that until Alabama ship sinks. I'm not gonna write off saving So, but, you know, it was a great hire by Kirby and if it wasn't Kirby, it was going to be someone else. Like you said it was gonna be it might have been late this year, might have been laying next year could have been Pittman, the year after that someone else was gonna hire this guy. And if it wasn't Kirby now with someone else later,
yeah, there's been a lot of talk in the articles written about it that he has his eyes set on being a head coach someday, and Hey, good for him. Maybe he felt that from a career perspective. he'd spent this amount of time as a strength conditioning coach, he had reached the pinnacle of that personal career and he's still young, so maybe he wants to climb for something else. I mean, from a payment perspective, I think you'd made 600 grand last year. So obviously was making plenty of money. This is more about I think, his personal ambition and what he wants to do. In the world of football, I also think there's been a lot of hand wringing about him having no background as a player. And I gotta tell you, man, and maybe this is because I didn't play football in college. But I really could care less about that, if you can coach and you're knowledgeable about the game, who cares? I just think that is the biggest irrelevant argument ever, just because you didn't play collegiate football does not mean that you can't function well in a coaching role at whether that be as an assistant or a head coach. And I think there are examples of that all over college football and college basketball for that matter, I don't think there's much to that. I think he's proven his worth. I think if he just shows you all of his hardware at his house or on his on his fingers when he chooses to wear them, I think that that speaks volumes enough,
I'm with you, I could care less if you played college football, if you can coach and you can motivate kids, you can coach and you can motivate kids, it's just hands down. If you can do it, you can do it. And if you can't, you can, and if you can't, he won't be in this position very long. That's just the fact of the matter. Kirby had proved this year that he's not going to leave someone in a position, they don't get the job done. Just the fact of the matter with the coli situation. coli didn't have results. coli is no longer a GA, hands down, that's just what happens. I think he'll do a great job. I don't foresee our special teams having a drop off. But I don't think the real real benefit of Cochrane is going to come from I think it's going to be in the motivation, I think it's going to be in the recruiting aspect of it. I think that's where we're gonna see the real benefit of Scott Cochran. And like I said, Sinclair's a hell of a strength and conditioning coach. And I would say probably now, with, with Cochran no longer being a strength conditioning coach, you probably got to say that Sinclair is probably one of the top if not the top, strength conditioning coach in the country, now they're going to share ideas, they're going to possibly you can only better the strength and conditioning program at Georgia with having him in the fold. You know, sharing those ideas now.
Yeah, I think long term, the interesting thing about the higher will to be how it affects number one, maybe for me, is the recruiting trail. Right. I think that's the biggest indicator of him having the own field roles that allows him to get out and recruit, again, to your point. is Scott Cochran going to make or break Georgia special teams? No, I don't think so. I think that's a cohesive project amongst the coaching staff anyways. And so that part of it, I don't think we'll know one way or the other, whether he's a special teams wizard or not. But we will know the results real quickly on how he plays in the living room and how many kids buy into the cult of Kirby and the cult of Cochrane. And I think that will become a thing. They just both seem to be dynamic personalities, personalities that kids really gravitate towards. And I think that'll be his main value as things go forward. I think the overarching piece of this, and I know we seem to talk about it every week, but the reason we talk about it is because Kirby keeps doing things that indicated his urgency. That was the other thing. I thought when I heard the higher notes, I was like, man, Kirby is pushing. Like, he must feel like they are right there. And he's trying to add as many people as possible to the program, whether it be on the player side, or on the administrative side, that allow them to reach the summit, right? I mean, I think that's what this entire offseason is indicated is that he is hungry. And as he said before the 2018 sC championship, he wants to eat, and he wants everybody else to eat, and he is going to do everything in his power to make that happen.
I agree. I don't think Kirby's feeling pressure to do it. But I think that he, he wants it so bad. And after being so close and 17. And then in 18, having the big lead against Bama having to 14 point leads slipping away again. And then last year, just getting back to the SEC championship game, but I think fans might have thought that there was a good shot against LSU. But I think after the first quarter, I think everyone in the room pretty much knew what was going to happen. We'd have the horse slash offensive, we just weren't able to keep up with Burro and LSU. But with the defense coming back this year, and for the foreseeable future on defense, like the couple year window with the defense, if the offense can be serviceable, and put up 2030 points again, Georgia's gonna be really hard to beat. I really hard to beat.
I wholeheartedly agree with that. And let's speak to 2019 a little bit because I do think this is something that's kind of been lost in the shuffle. And I'm not trying to take away anything from Clemson or from Ohio State. They both had very dynamic offenses. Great playmakers at the quarterback position, great playmakers on the edge. Both had very good defenses, but that LSU offense was once in a decade, maybe once in two decades. And number one, and obviously this could change. I could be completely wrong about this. But you telling me there's gonna be an offense next year that just it puts everything together like that and clicks the way they did. I just don't see it, man. That was almost like, everything was meant to be with that team. They just punished people. I mean, really, they didn't play close game. I don't hit the one close game against who Florida in Florida go there and play tight with him. Or was it Auburn and Auburn wouldn't play tight with them. Right. It was Auburn.
I mean, Florida was closer in the beginning, but then they kind of ran away against Florida. It was closer, but they put up 42 points. And I think they only ran 44 plays or something ridiculous like that. Like, I mean, they didn't they didn't hardly have the ball and 4042 points. So Auburn, I think they only put up 2824 or something like that. And that was their lowest scoring game this season of the regular season. But I mean, their offense, it was if you remember that not to go to the NFL. But if you remember the Patriots team that went undefeated until they lost the giant Super Bowl their offense. That was the college equivalent of that, like I mean, it was like they were just unstoppable. Every week, no one they had that one tough game against Auburn, but other than that, yeah, it was just I mean, it was a wrecking ball. That offense was unstoppable.
Yeah, I know. I just think to what you were saying about Kirby's belief in the defense. I think that he believes that the capability that this defense this year, and possibly the year after that will have to be dominant. I mean, in a lot of ways they were dominant last year. And if they can build upon that and become even more dynamic, I think he realizes that offensively, they will be fine. I think dog nation ran an article maybe today or yesterday, highlighting quotes from the 10 Georgia players at the combine that we're all asked about Georgia's offense for 2020. And if it was going to be high flying and wide open, and pretty much to a man, they all go, No, Kirby's gonna run. And I just thought it was very interesting that they were all like, yeah, y'all are crazy. If y'all think they're gonna like fling it around 40 times a game, like Kirby's gonna punch you in the mouth, play great defense, run the football, they essentially are all saying we have all these guys back playing great on the offensive line, they're gonna road grade you, they're gonna control the line of scrimmage, and they're gonna be just fine. So I found that very interesting. And I think we've all kind of jumped to this, oh, we're gonna throw it around the yard, and we're gonna be LSU 2.0. And Todd monken is gonna fling it and do XY and Z. And we might be wrong about that, you know, maybe the hope is that they're like, 2017, right. I mean, that team ran the ball a ton, but was also very explosive. Not just throwing the football but also running the football, I think they had an even amount of 40 plus yard plays in 2017. Throwing and passing, I think they had 1040 plus plays passing in, like 12 running. And I think that's what you want. That's what he has consistently said is that we want balance. We want to be good at both when we want to. And so I just I found that interesting. Maybe we will see some of that in the G day game. And it was announced this week that kickoff for G day will be at 2pm on April 18. Obviously, that's something the market calendar for and get excited about. I know boss and I are pumped up about it. One thing that's a little bit of a downer about it is it was also announced that the game will not be televised on traditional television. So the SEC network has made the choice to do whip around coverage of the spring games. And my understanding is that will be whipped around coverage of Georgia spring game, Alabama spring game and maybe Florida's was the third as for the game will not be on in its entirety on your television. It will be broadcast in full on the SEC network plus, which it's my understanding is what you would access it through the ESPN app, either the app on your phone, the app on your tablet, the app on your TV, if you have Roku or or fire stick or something of that nature. But that's how you will watch the game unfolds with sec network Plus, I don't know why they made that choice. But they did. What were your thoughts on that? I was I was disappointed with that.
Well, first of all, GTA is great for fans. It's that first taste is the culmination of spring practice. But after not having real football for four months, it's a taste of even though it's a scrimmage, it's a taste of hope and that has to hold you over either the last week of August or the first week of September. So it's really all you get for eight nine months. And for the SEC network to you know, which really, you know, let's face it is owned by ESPN and run by ESPN to decide to not do the full game is really kind of disappointing. Now I did read also that that doesn't mean that they won't show the full game at a later time. So we will be able to DVR it and it'll probably be shown throughout the summer, a gazillion times. So I mean, it's not like we won't be able to see the whole thing. But when you're watching a scrimmage, it's not like rewatching a regular season game which I do multiple times during the season. Like you pick up little things here and there. And once you watch a scrimmage, it's a controlled scrimmage not running, you know, they're running probably like, you know, 10% of their playbook you can't really, you know, hit but so much because they don't want anybody to get hurt. So, you know, there's only so much you can see in a controlled scrimmage like that. So it's really disappointing to not get that full experience when it's live. With that being said, it is kind of interesting, the way they chose to do it with the whip around coverage. I understand that it's Alabama, Georgia, Florida. So you choose three of the highest profile teams, and they're all at this brown the same time. And you recently watched a glorified highlights. So I mean, I guess kind of the fantasy aspect of it. I mean, college football is not big into fantasy football, like the NFL is, but I mean, that's kind of what they're doing with it. So I mean, I guess I kind of understand that marketing aspect of it. But from a fan perspective, I think it's terrible.
Yeah, I would just wonder what those conversations were, whether it was a deal where the viewership just hasn't been there. I mean, I guess in a sense, we're kind of spoiled, right? It used to be that maybe one spring game would be featured on TV. And it was generally somebody who either had been the national champion the previous year, or was the expected number one for the upcoming year. So maybe we're spoiled in that aspect. I mean, I can remember watching it online through George's website, back in 2005, six, those type times. So obviously, we're a little bit spoiled, because we're just used to have an access to everything. But I just thought with the high profile, the program, the fact that they have the SEC network, and seemingly 50 other ESPN, that there's an opportunity to put it on TV and full live as it happens, the other piece of it, which this is selfish, obviously, because we support Georgia, but I think it's a great opportunity to get your program on national TV, right, in a time of the year when football's not in play. So that part of it kind of stinks, too, because you miss out on that opportunity for a Saturday afternoon in the middle of April, to have Georgia football all over your TV, between the hedges with tons of people that are in red and black. And I mean, that part of it kind of stinks a little bit. But you know, maybe that'll just be the excuse. We need to carry our rear ends to Sanford that day, brother. Maybe that's how I'll sell it to the missus.
Well, I'd also like to know like when they're having the conversations like what really is what really as far as ratings goes, is it going against I remember last year, it was terrible timing. It was Easter weekend. So I understand like people, a lot of people traveling. So I understand last year why it might not might have been a ratings downer. But this year, it's on Easter weekend, baseball's just getting going. So you're probably not gonna have a high profile Saturday afternoon game for major league baseball, maybe NASCAR. What else is going on? On a Saturday afternoon in middle of April?
Well, you know what I thought about is the xfl still gonna be going on then? You know, ESPN broadcast that? Oh, that's
a good point.
I wonder if they got preempted because they're going to show xfl stuff? I don't know. It just seems just seems like a departure from what what they might be in the playoffs? And I Who knows? I don't know. Anyways, I mean, not again, not that it's here. They're we're gonna get to see it if we want to see it. I mean, I'll just watch it one sec network plus, yeah. But just kind of wonder, thanks for calling. Yeah, that's kind of a bummer. That's really all I got today, Brother, you got anything you want to wrap up? Before we get out of here.
I want to circle back on Cochran 13 years at any job to be at the height of your profession is a long time. And to do it as well as he did. It says a lot. And then when someone leaves and you get all these former players, and even some current players who are just basically gushing over him and talking about how great he is, if anybody who's down on it, which I don't think anyone is in the program, just go read all the former Alabama players tweets, Josh Jacobs said it best I think he said he was the glue of the program. So if former Alabama players are saying that
I think we gotta go, I couldn't be happier with the higher and again, I was stunned. I'm still kind of stunned about it. It just, it seems like a big deal. And, you know, honestly, it kind of seems like a bigger deal than I thought it was gonna be. I read the news. And I was like, wow, that's, that seems like a big story. And I figured, well, maybe I'm a little bit biased because I consume not only a lot of college football, but a lot of programming around college football. So you know, I have seen the Real Sports piece on Scott Cochran. I've seen the 60 piece on Scott Cochran. So I was like, maybe I just kind of know more about him than than the general general viewing population does. But the fact that the story has had the legs that it has had, and so many former players were asked about it at the combine and just seems like throughout college football, this is a big deal. And I think in a lot of ways, Kirk Herbstreit is the barometer of the college football landscape. And for him to come out with the strong words that he had about it tells you and that's a guy who's very much on the inside of the upper echelon program, you know, his kids play at Clemson. He's in tune with what's going on at Georgia. He's on campus at Alabama has done tons of interviews with to, for a guy like that, who has his hand on the pulse of multiple programs to make the statements that he made about it should tell In and of itself, how big a deal it is. So we're excited and what it really made me want to say is go dog second brother. Go dogs