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The Georgia Bulldogs' offense is about as bad as the St. Louis Rams'. Wow, what a surprise

Mark Richt is trying everything he can think of, but the time for trying new stuff was the offseason.

Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

When Georgia offensive coordinator Mike Bobo left for the Colorado State head coaching job, Mark Richt replaced him with Brian Schottenheimer of the St. Louis Rams. Rams fans celebrated.

Schottenheimer had only two years of college recruiting experience, as a position coach at Syracuse and USC more than a decade prior, which was one reason nobody really grasped the thinking behind the hire.

The other reason was that the Rams' offenses under Schottenheimer were bad. In his three years, they never ranked better than No. 23 in the NFL in yardage. Throughout, his management of Tavon Austin in particular drove a retired NFL defensive end on our staff to madness (here's Stephen White, still angry about it in 2015). Before that, he was the Jets' OC, where his side only once ranked better than No. 16.

His head coaches were Herm Edwards, Eric Mangini, Rex Ryan and Jeff Fisher, none known for wild innovation, and his quarterback options only gave him so high a ceiling. But the point is that Richt hired an alien coach who'd had one pretty good (No. 11) offense in almost a decade as an OC.

Coach, why'd you do that?

"We were looking for someone similar in philosophy as to how you think offensive football should be played," Richt said at SEC Media Days. "There's so many teams that are just spread. They're spread, and they're going fast. They have four receiver sets, sometimes five and all that. We'll get into the spread to some degree, but we still want to have a physical running game to complement a play action passing game and complement our ability to spread and do those kinds of things.

"So it's kind of hard to find those guys in the college ranks. Coach Schottenheimer, being an NFL coordinator for, I think, nine years, the last nine years, and watching the style of play, he was very similar to what we do."

If a thing is hard to find, there's often a reason. Richt's won a lot of games with his style and knows more about football than I know about anything, but the time to change was months or years ago.

Georgia's offense ranked No. 43 in S&P+ entering Saturday, and that's gonna go down. The Dawgs put 223 yards on archrival Florida in a 27-3 loss, fewer than the Gators allowed to anybody but New Mexico State (Missouri outgained Georgia against UF, and Mizzou's offense is nonexistent).

A big thing went wrong here.

One, Georgia tried out totally unseasoned quarterback Faton Bauta, who had five career attempts before Saturday. That was in part due to its other options being mediocre (UGA ranked in the middle of the SEC in just about every passing stat; former starter Greyson Lambert watched as other former starter Brice Ramsey took over at punter for some reason) and in part due to the 215-pound Bauta being a dual-threat who could challenge one of UF's few potential weaknesses. The Gators had given up 136 yards on the ground to Tennessee's Joshua Dobbs a month prior, though they otherwise hadn't allowed much of anything to QBs.

So with Schottenheimer's stated plan, to wield a big runner of a QB alongside the terrifying Sony Michel, Georgia ran only 22 times, tied for its lowest number of runs in a game since the 2008 horror show against Alabama. And it's not like UF got ahead early and dictated Georgia play catch-up; the Dawgs were within two scores for the first 28 minutes.

The passes weren't any better, as the rookie QB in a rivalry game against the No. 11 team threw passes that bobbled their way into four INTs.

What the hell, man.

Over the last 30 years or so, Georgia has been the country's biggest underachiever. A large state program with money in the middle of the country's best recruiting should have more than two SEC championships since 1982, even including all context and caveats and SEC Championship near-misses.

Add that to the fact that the Dawgs now blow big games more regularly than they used to (yep, Saturday will go on this list), and the annual hollerin' for UGA to make a major change is more reasonable than ever. Richt's costliest mistake in Athens might've been failing to make one himself when hiring this OC.