UH offense could give Georgia a dawg-gone time
NEW ORLEANS » June Jones believes Georgia having a month of Sundays to get ready for Hawaii removes the clear advantage the Warriors would have if the Bulldogs only had a week to prepare for the run-and-shoot.
But senior quarterback Colt Brennan sees it a little differently as the two teams get ready for Tuesday's Sugar Bowl in one of the more intriguing postseason games. He doesn't believe Georgia can learn much by watching film or simulating UH's offense in practice.
"It's really hard for them to simulate it because when they watch film, every time we run a play it goes different than how the defense is playing us," Brennan said. "I don't know how they can teach their kids to make this adjustment. I would assume it would be pretty difficult.
"But football is a game where you have to show up and play. Obviously, if they show up with a great game plan and a lot of confidence, and come up physical, obviously anybody can beat anyone, and obviously it can work both ways. It's difficult for us to come up with an athletic look from our defense as well. It works both ways."
Georgia head coach Mark Richt conceded stopping Hawaii was going to be difficult. And even though he has had plenty of time to scheme and dream of ways to stop Hawaii's potent attack, it's hard for the scout team to pretend to be Hawaii.
"You can't duplicate it," Richt said. "You can try to line up in the same sets and try to run the same routes, but it is very difficult to run it with the same precision as they run it and the same precision as Colt Brennan throws the football. Plus, they have different paces. You can only hope to show the basic formation and routes that they have."
Jones isn't buying into the idea that his four-wide look will cause Georgia problems. In 1987, when he introduced this offense with the Houston Oilers, nobody was running this offense. That isn't the case anymore.
"Everybody plays some form of what we do now," Jones said. "Whether it is Florida running their pull-out offense and the formations they play. Now they have a little bit of an idea after they have 30 days to prepare and I'm sure they will have new wrinkles and new things that they are going to do to us.
"They have great, talented players. They have very good coaches and they will have a good scheme to compete against us, obviously."
Jones caught up with Saints executive vice president and general manager Mickey Loomis
and New Orleans coach Sean Payton
as the Warriors practiced at the NFL team's facility yesterday.
Loomis and Jones got to know each other through Jones' friend, Dolphins GM Randy Mueller. All three men are from Oregon.
"Normally what happens every year is the Sugar Bowl people will call and ask if they can use the facilities for one or both of the teams if they so choose," Loomis said. "So that was the process, though I called June when they got selected ... and said, 'Hey listen, anything you need from us?' because of the relationship he and I have had."
Loomis also said he feels the Saints and Warriors have something in common.
"Our story of last year is similar to Hawaii," said Loomis, referring to New Orleans' NFC South Division championship of 2006 a year after Hurricane Katrina.
"When you exceed expectations, you have a, I wouldn't want to say, miraculous, season, if that's the right term, but have a special season, after overcoming a lot of obstacles."
In his news conference yesterday, Jones talked about how he couldn't get any playing time at quarterback in four years at Oregon and Hawaii, and voila, in one year in the run-and-shoot at Portland State he broke passing records.
"Does that mean you were a system quarterback?" KITV's Robert Kekaula asked.
Laughter filled the room
"I was a system quarterback," Jones answered, also laughing as he labeled himself with the stereotype he fights to keep off of Brennan.