NCAA Football

Georgia Football: Brian Schottenheimer Creating an NFL Atmosphere

It was only a matter of time before Georgia head coach Mark Richt was forced to replace former offensive coordinator Mike Bobo.

The Bulldogs had finished no worse than fifth in the SEC in yards per play in every season since 2010, and they led the conference in the category twice (2014 and 2012). When Bobo got the head coaching job at Colorado State, Richt looked to the NFL ranks to find the next leader of his offense.

He found Brian Schottenheimer, who spent the last three seasons in the same role with the St. Louis Rams, and the six prior to that with the New York Jets.

It should come as no surprise that Schottenheimer is bringing an NFL mentality to the Bulldogs offense since making the jump to Athens.

"Coach Bobo had been a college coach for so long, and coach 'Schotty' is just getting back into that flow," wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell said after Georgia's spring game. "When he's teaching, he's rolling through. He's not taking five minutes to teach one play. It's like 10 seconds, and you better know it by tomorrow.

"He's brought that in. Every time we install, it's quick. A 30-play install might take five minutes."

For a team that is replacing its top two wide receivers, has a three-headed quarterback battle on its hand (and possibly a fourth if Everett Golson joins the Bulldogs) and is installing a new scheme, that may seem like it's "too much, too soon."

It isn't for Mitchell, because he knows what it could lead to down the road.

"We love it," he said. "Everybody in the room wants to go to the NFL, and that's where he came from. If he's doing that, he's showing us how to prepare at the next level."

After 15 practices, the transition from Bobo to Schottenheimer has gone as smoothly as anticipated.

"I was in almost every offensive planning meeting and most every quarterback meeting throughout the spring, and I can assure you that coach Schottenheimer is a great teacher," Richt said on Wednesday's teleconference. "He knows what he's doing and has a great process of going about his business, and [I'm] really comfortable with what he's bringing to the table."

The quarterback battle is the most notable issue Schottenheimer has to resolve during his first season in Athens.

Junior Faton Bauta, sophomore Brice Ramsey and freshman Jacob Park are all vying for the top spot on the depth chart in 2015. Not only do they have the pressure of a position battle to deal with, but they have to adjust to the faster pace in which Schottenheimer operates his practices.

Mitchell admitted following the spring game that the offense isn't where it needs to be, but that's more due to the instability created by three quarterbacks rotating with the first team rather than the transition from Bobo to Schottenheimer.

"We need a lot more chemistry," he said. "That's not bashing the chemistry we have now because we do have flow and you saw a little bit of that [in the spring game]. But we have a long way to go and everybody needs to be on the same page. That will be straightened out when we get that quarterback position solidified."

The absence of flow in the spring could pay off for the Georgia Bulldogs in the fall and each player once they exhaust their eligibility or decide to move on to the next level.

Georgia had two players—running back Todd Gurley and wide receiver Chris Conley—drafted in the first three rounds of the 2015 NFL draft. Quarterback Aaron Murray and tight end Arthur Lynch drafted in the fifth round a year ago.

If all goes according to plan, there will be more Bulldogs offensive players going to the next level in the draft in the near future. When they do, they'll be better-prepared to handle the fast-paced nature of NFL coaching thanks to Schottenheiemer.

"[The transition] has gone very well," Mitchell said. "His coaching style is different, but they're different people, though."

 

Quotes were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted. All stats are courtesy of cfbstats.com unless otherwise noted, and all recruiting information is courtesy of 247Sports' composite rankings.

Barrett Sallee is the lead SEC college football writer and college football video analyst for Bleacher Report as well as a host on Bleacher Report Radio on Sirius 93, XM 208.

Follow Barrett on Twitter @BarrettSallee.

Read more College Football news on BleacherReport.com

Ohio State Football: Predicting the Buckeyes' 2015 Win-Loss Record

After winning the first-ever College Football Playoff National Championship, Urban Meyer has Ohio State primed to enter 2015 as the nation's top-ranked team.

The Buckeyes return a load of talent, highlighted by superstar juniors Joey Bosa and Ezekiel Elliott, in addition to a trio of championship-caliber quarterbacks.

But is Ohio State strong enough to navigate its schedule unscathed and post the second undefeated regular season under Meyer?

That will be a stiff challenge, because achieving perfection is very hard. Just ask Alabama—the closest thing to a dynasty in recent years—which has only finished unbeaten one time since Nick Saban took over in 2007.

The Buckeyes will have to work through a tough slate this fall, which is backloaded with three significant road blocks in November. 

Here's an early week-by-week forecast for Ohio State's 2015 season.

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College Football Summer Enrollees We're Excited to See Most in 2015

In recent years, the college football recruiting cycle has sped up considerably. Recruits are committing to programs earlier. They’re also enrolling earlier in the hopes of acclimating to their colleges of choice earlier through spring practice—and earning early playing time, of course.

Some coaches are pushing for an early signing period which would lock prospects into their programs before early February and give coaches an opportunity to focus on late-deciding recruits. However, Michael Carvell of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution notes that there are mixed feelings about an early period. 

This season, a number of high-profile recruits enrolled early, but a healthy portion of 247Sports’ Top 250 recruits signed on the traditional national signing day on the first Wednesday in February. They didn’t go through spring practice but will still have a chance to acclimate, enrolling in summer classes and going through informal workouts with their new teammates.

Here’s a look at the 2015 summer enrollees we’re most looking forward to seeing.

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