Without Bobo for the Belk Bowl, Georgia TE coach Lilly set to run the offense
Mike Bobo is gone from the Georgia coaching staff, but the players haven't forgotten him.
For the purposes of game planning for Tuesday's Belk Bowl matchup with No. 20 Louisville (9-3), though, the No. 13 Bulldogs (9-3) have moved on with tight ends coach John Lilly calling the plays.
"About 90 percent of the offensive game plan was done before we got here," UGA coach Mark Richt said. "It's obviously different not having Mike around at practice after having him here for so long. But we have a very capable coaching staff who knows that it's time for us to make sure we take care of business in this game."
While Bobo was a member of the staff from 2001 until last week, Lilly has logged several years with the program as well. He became Georgia's tight ends coach in January 2008 after a stint as tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator at Florida State from 1998-2007.
Just this season Lilly was given the additional responsibility of offensive special teams coordinator.
Still, there has been something of an adjustment with Bobo -- now head coach at Colorado State -- no longer in the fold.
"It's a little different not seeing coach Bobo around," quarterback Hutson Mason said. "He's been around the last five years while I have been here so now Doug [Saylor], our graduate assistant, and coach Richt has been running the meetings and coach Lilly has been running the practice for the offensive side of the ball."
The change in the offensive brain trust comes as UGA faces what could be the toughest defense it has seen all season long.
The Cardinal resistance -- under the direction of former Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham -- is one of the nation's stingiest units.
However, Georgia does run one of college football's most potent offenses.
Freshman Nick Chubb, who took command of the ground game during Todd Gurley's four-game suspension, has amassed 1,057 yards and scored 10 TDs in an attack that puts up 41.7 points per game.
"We came out here to be physical," Louisville linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin said. "We're facing a great running back in Nick Chubb. We have a great challenge in facing Chubb."
Both teams will have one more full practice before using Monday as a walk-through day.
Tuesday's game at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte is the first gridiron matchup between the programs.
"This will be one of the most physical offensive lines we have faced all season," Cardinal senior linebacker Deiontrez Mount said. "Georgia is big up front. They remind us of Boston College, who liked to run the football. Georgia wants to run the football first.
"It's going to be a very physical game."