Cowboys worried about Bobo
Mike Bobo
Mike Bobo
Dawg Post Reporter
Posted Aug 30, 2007

ATHENS – Brand new Oklahoma State defensive coordinator Tim Beckman has more to worry about this week than just reshaping a unit that was 10th in the Big 12 in points allowed last year.

“Right now, that coordinator can’t just look at everything we’ve done the last couple years and say that’s everything they do,” Georgia coach Mark Richt said. “He can’t be sure what Mike (Bobo) might do different.”

Bobo will enter his first season as the No. 13 Bulldogs’ offensive coordinator and play-caller Saturday when Georgia hosts the Cowboys at 6:45 p.m. in Sanford Stadium. He had atwo-game audition last year, but has now had an entire offseason to cement his style and develop his rhythm for calling plays.

“I’m not even real sure what Georgia does right now,” said Richt, who turned over play-calling for the first time in 18 years after last year’s Auburn game. “We’re all going to find out right here soon, but from what I’ve seen in practice, I feel real good.”

Georgia players are split on whether the average fan will be able to tell someone other than Richt is calling the shots.

“You probably won’t even be able to see the difference from the sideline,” center Fernando Velasco said.

But wide receivers Sean Bailey and Mikey Henderson disagree. Georgia will employ more formations under Bobo, Henderson predicted.

“We’re still going to play Georgia football,” he said. “We’re going to try to run that thing and be physical because that’s what you’ve got to do in the SEC, but the average Joe probably will see a couple different things.” Bailey thinks the re will be more passing and more chances taken on long-yardage plays.

“I don’t know how he’s going to call it, but of course he’s going to handle different situations in different ways,” Bailey said. “It seems like he’s going to be aggressive and as a receiver, that brings a smile to my face because that’s going to give us more opportunities.”

Bobo won’t say what, if any, changes to expect.

“We’ll see,” he said.

The Bulldogs averaged 227.5 yards in the two games he called. Richt has seen the familiar stresses of play-calling creep up on Bobo as the season-opener approaches, he said.

“I think Mike’s emotions are like most people, when the guys practice well and execute well, he’s in a better mood,” Richt said.

Beckman came to Oklahoma State from Ohio State, where he was the Buckeyes’ cornerbacks coach last year. Before that, he was Urban Meyer’s defensive coordinator at Bowling Green. Georgia’s offensive players have watched Bowling Green tapes for the last two weeks in opes of getting a feel for Beckman’s style.

Oklahoma State’s defenders have tried to take as much information as they could from the two games Bobo called last year against Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech, Coach Mike Gundy said.

“The important thing early in the season is to make sure you are doing what’s best for your football team,” Gundy said, “and not necessarily worrying about the other team.”

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