Short takes: Sims leads way, Alabama rules SEC again

Alabama receiver DeAndrew White caught this 58-yard touchdown pass from Blake Sims in the first half. (Brant Sanderlin, AJC)

Alabama receiver DeAndrew White caught this 58-yard touchdown pass from Blake Sims in the first half. (Brant Sanderlin, AJC)

Alabama receiver DeAndrew White caught this 58-yard touchdown pass from Blake Sims in the first half. (Brant Sanderlin, AJC)

Well, Alabama won again. Raise your hand if you didn’t see that one coming. Final score: No. 1 ranked Alabama 42, Missouri 13. I’ll be back shortly with a full column on the game. Until then, here are my three “Short Takes”:

1. Blake Sims — the QB you didn’t see coming: Nothing against Blake Sims, the former Gainesville (Ga.) High School star who picked Alabama over a number of other schools in 2010, including Georgia (though the Bulldogs reportedly didn’t put on a full-court press until after he verbally committed to the Tide). But few would’ve projected this level of success. He was named MVP of the game. Georgia recruited him as an “athlete,” a generic designation for players they haven’t assigned a position to yet, and even Alabama shuttled him between running back and backup quarterback before this season. But Sims won the starting QB job this season and has steadily improved all season in Lane Kiffin’s offense. Sims completed 15 of 17 passes in the first half for 160 yards, including a 58-yard touchdown to DeAndrew White. He finished 23 for 27 for 262 and 2 TDs.

2. The West is best … again: Before you bang on Missouri too much, understand this: The Tigers are merely continuing what has been a bad trend for SEC East teams. The East champion beat the West in 11 of the first 17 conference championship games through 2008 (seven wins by Florida, two each by Georgia and Tennessee). But the West now won six straight SEC titles (Alabama 3, Auburn 2 and LSU 1). Anybody watching this season knew the power was in the West and that the East was mediocre. So call this mere punctuation. Also, a note for Georgia fans: The Bulldogs play two West teams next season: home against Alabama (Oct. 3) and at Auburn (Nov. 14).

3. Look out in the NFL draft for…Jimmy Hunt? Missouri senior wide receiver Jimmy Hunt had been considered only a marginal NFL draft prospect before Saturday. But if Saturday’s game and recent performances are any indication, he’s legit. He was Missouri’s big play threat, with a 32-yard catch to set up a field goal, a 63-yarder to catch up a touchdown and a 47-yarder to set up a field goal. He finished with six catches for 169 yards, a high for either team. Hunt is only 6-foot, 205, but he showed an ability to adjust and get open when Missouri QB Maty Mauk scrambled away from the pass rush. Hunt ranked only second on Missouri in receptions with 34 in the regular season but he had 13 for 252 and two scores in the three games before Saturday.


A recent writer’s dozen from the digital jukebox
— AJC: Weekend Predictions: Georgia Tech ends Florida State’s run
— AJC: New rankings make college football playoff look like set up
— MyAJC: Rare situation: Eyes are off Bulldogs and on Jackets
— MyAJC: Tech’s Bobinski finally stops stalling with Johnson
— AJC: Georgia Tech finally offers Johnson contract extension
— MyAJC: Finally, a real football team named Falcons shows up
— AJC: Falcons’ short takes: Devin Hester says officials admitted mistake
— MyAJC: This Georgia season was just another big tease
— AJC: Georgia ‘short takes’ on loss to Georgia Tech
— MyAJC: As Georgia loses SEC title shot, Tech suddenly has higher ceiling
— AJC: Missouri wins SEC East — will it affect Georgia?
— AJC: Weekend Predictions: Dogs win, Falcons lose, toys devolve
— AJC: Tech’s Johnson long overdue for contract extension
— MyAJC: Tech’s season a loud response for Johnson’s critics
— AJC: First-ballot thoughts: Smoltz should join Maddux, Glavine
— AJC: Georgia vs. Georgia Tech: Which team has had better season?
— MyAJC: Gurley’s injury should prompt change in NFL draft rule
— AJC: Weekend Predictions: The straight poop–Georgia wins SEC East, Falcons lose
— AJC: Is Braves’ pursuit of Lester realistic?
— AJC: Braves trade Jason Heyward and John Hart just took huge risk
— MyAJC: It makes no sense but Falcons are in first
— AJC: Short takes on Falcons’ win over Panthers
— MyAJC: Dogs have a statement win, now hope for best with Gurley
— AJC: Short takes on Georgia’s win and Gurley
— MyAJC: As hoops open, Tech looks far more ready than Georgia
 

Reader Comments 0

31 comments
TideDawg
TideDawg

Just signing a 5 star recruit doesn't mean he will be coached like a 5 star and it doesn't mean he will play like a 5 star. Alabama has 5 star athletes sitting on the bench because they can't cut it in the big time. They have 2 & 3 star recruits that are playing because they have been coached up. Saban doesn't play some kid because he was a star in high school. He puts the best players he has on the field. No loyalties, no promises, at Ala. you play because you earn it. Nobody thought Blake Sims would be Ala.'s starter. He proved himself, worked hard, and earned the job, and Saban believed in him. He's one of Ala.s best!! Everyone expects Coker to be the QB at Ala. next year. He will be.....if he earns it.


Put Coker's size on Sims and you would have the best QB in the nation and Mariota would be second choice for the Heisman. The only thing that will keep Sims from playing QB in the pros is his size.

RuePaulJohnson
RuePaulJohnson

@TideDawg

Russell Wilson says hello!

I will admit that Sims doesn't have Wilson's arm strength and passing IQ.

dontstereotypemeyo
dontstereotypemeyo

RuePaulJohnson:

Oh please, can it with your racism. Blaming "young black males" for Richt's failures? "Young black males" play (or played) for Mack Brown, Nick Saban, Steve Spurrier, Garry Patterson, Bob Stoops, Art Briles etc. All of those guys win more than Richt and none of them have the off-the-field/disciplinary/academic problems that Richt recruits do. Typical racist: blames black people for the failures of whites. Here is the real problem with Richt: his staff is mediocre. Saban, Spurrier and other SUCCESSFUL coaches hire top assistants who get head coaching jobs elsewhere. Saban, Spurrier, Stoops, Meyer, Bobby Bowden, Pete Carroll ... all the guys who win big have their coordinators and assistant head coaches move up to head coaching jobs, and their position coaches move up to coordinator jobs. But Richt? 14 years and the only person from his staff to get a head coaching job was Brian VanGorder, who quit after 1 year at then-FCS Georgia Southern. And no one from his staff has been able to get so much as an offensive or defensive coordinator job from a Sun Belt school. (Or at least not directly off Richt's staff. Some guys have gone from position coach to Richt's staff to position coach at another school's staff and then to coordinator positions.)

The reason is that Richt either isn't as good at identifying top assistants as top coaches, or he isn't as good at molding and developing them. And as for the player conduct issues? GOOD coaches handle that by A) doing a good job of scouting guys so they won't recruit trouble makers in the first place and/or B) doing a good job of being a leader and disciplinarian to guys once they get in their program. That is why "black males" have never caused any problems for Steve Spurrier, whether he was at Duke, Florida or South Carolina. As a matter of fact, both Florida and South Carolina had serious problems with off-the-field issues and NCAA troubles before Spurrier got there, and Spurrier cleaned both programs up. Spurrier also dominated both UGA and Tennessee at both Florida and Tennessee despite generally recruiting lower ranked athletes than Tennessee while at Florida, and lower ranked athletes than Tennessee AND Georgia while at South Carolina. So wow ... apparently being able to sort out the bad apples in recruiting and discipline them while they are in your program leads to better results on the football field too! And you know what, ex Spurrier players generally did not get in trouble in the NFL either, not the way that certain ex-UGA players like Odell Thurman did. 

Instead of blaming the failures of white guys on black guys, maybe UGA just needs a better white (or black, Asian or Hispanic) coach. Ever consider that? 

RuePaulJohnson
RuePaulJohnson

@dontstereotypemeyo

They don't cause PROBLEMS for those HCs you listed above, because they cover chit up at those schools.

Reduce the attrition on  Mr. Brown's list and CMR might be playing for a Playoff-NC this season.

Dorial Green-Beckham beat up his GF and dragged her down a flight of steps by her hair ala Lawrence Phillips, guess where he transferred to, Oklahoma to play for Stoops.

While you are at it, please explain why UGA has so much attrition under CMR, explain why so many players at UGA are throwing away a chance at a free education and a shot at the NFL?

kicksix
kicksix

As long as Alabama has rules that no one else has to follow, they will keep doing what they have been doing.  The media looks the other way when it comes to the tyde.  

Jusfellofftheturniptruck
Jusfellofftheturniptruck

Just think if Uga had gotten its head out of its a$$ and offered Sims and or Watson earlier. Gvilles only about 35 miles away from Athens.....

Prolly wouldn't have made a difference cause they would have made Sims a dback and Watson a wideout

Just like Cam Newton a tight end and A J Johnson a defensive end

This life long dog fan is now following clemson n the tide. Shameful

Uga never even offered T J jones. He's in the nfl now, just sayin...

RuePaulJohnson
RuePaulJohnson

@Jusfellofftheturniptruck

Cam would have eventually gotten booted out of UGA like he did at Florida, is that the same AJ Johnson that plays at Tenn that is being investigated for rape and they found a "weed grinder" in his room, how long do you think he would have stayed at UGA?

UGA's problem was CMR rewarding tenure and playing Mason over Ramsey this season, the Dogs were too 1-dimensional with Mason and it hurt them in the losses you had, that and your defense "took off days" in your 3 losses.

Keep your players out of the bars & strip clubs and away from Alcohol & Weed and those 3 losses would have have been wins.

Also UGA cannot get every player from a Ga. HS that goes on to the NFL, Bama didn't get Jameis Winston, but that hasn't stopped them.

twentysixpointtwo
twentysixpointtwo

Hope Mediocre Mark enjoyed watching the SEC Championship game from his comfy recliner.

TrueFan1
TrueFan1

Lane Kiffin, Living proof you don't have to be a great coach to lead  a great recruited class....

KeepOnSmilingWetWillie
KeepOnSmilingWetWillie

@TrueFan1 Give the guy a little credit. He is 39 and has mad more money than Davy Crockett. Lane is the major reason Bama was able to have a good year.

PigIron
PigIron

1. Alabama 12-1

2. Oregon 12-1

3. Florida State 13-0

4. Ohio State 12-1

5. Baylor 11-1

6. TCU 11-1

7. Michigan State 10-2

8. Mississippi State 10-2

9. Kansas State 9-3

10. Ole Miss 9-3

OH-IO
OH-IO

Questions anyone??

CardiganBoy
CardiganBoy

Yeah, I have one.  Was OSU representing the Leaders or the Legends Division?

CardiganBoy
CardiganBoy

Impressive win for the Buckeyes.  Looks like they earned their way into the playoff.  Cryin' Urban proved again that it takes more than elite talent and elite facilities to perform like an elite program on Saturday afternoons.   Are you taking notes UGA?


But lets see what happens now.  It might be that OSU and the Big Ten will be exposed AGAIN on the national stage when they play legit competition.  


Or they might be the best team in the playoff.  


Wisconsin should be ashamed though.  59 to zip?  They didn't even show up.

TrueFan1
TrueFan1

@ThomasBrownUGA What can you say, CMR  doesn't put up with what other programs encourage or look the other way at....

RuePaulJohnson
RuePaulJohnson

@ThomasBrownUGA

Mr. Brown I read through that attrition list and I have a question for you:

At what point do young African-American MEN act mature and take seriously the opportunity to play Power-5 Level CFB at the University of Ga.?

If they love school they can take their scholly seriously and better their lives, or if they hate school they can do enough to stay eligible, and then take their FB careers seriously and better their lives.

Many of those players from your list seemed to choose neither option, much less both.

You seem to have a lot of animus for CMR because he cannot follow 85 guys around 24-7 and "force" them to act more mature and take their opportunities more seriously while they are enrolled at UGA.

Tell me what CMR can do with young Black Males that are likely to not have had a good Father and lack discipline when they get to a Major University and suddenly they and all their bad life decisions are in the Spotlight?

Please put forth ONE THING that CMR can do differently, he can't not recruit them, after all they are the same players being recruited by Bama, Auburn, LSU, Florida, etc?

Please give some constructive, concise solutions, instead of merely putting out long-winded rants of "fire the HC"?

SnoopDawg
SnoopDawg

Hope the Bulldog Nation is enjoying themselves in front of the TV watching other teams playing for the conference championships. One day i pray that UGA will fire Mark Richt and Mcgarity.

ThomasBrownUGA
ThomasBrownUGA

@SnoopDawg  No. We still think Mark Richt is great.  Sure he is.  Keep telling yourself that, and explain to others how he loses to the teams he loses to every stinking year.

Tide_is_Rolling_ANWSI
Tide_is_Rolling_ANWSI

@SnoopDawg I suppose you enjoyed the years of Ray Golf and Jim Donnan.  Perhaps winning football games aren't your thing in Georgia

Nigerian-Prince-In-Exile
Nigerian-Prince-In-Exile

Alabama just wears down their opponents. I hope the Falcons were scouting this game. There are some guys on both teams that woud help out playing in the dome on Sundays.

I like Bosher, but if that Tide punter is on the board when the Falcons are drafting in 2017 or 2018, he may be worth a 3rd, 4th, or 5th round pick. He can certainly flip the field with his booming punts.