Al Groh Drinking Game, Revisited

It has certainly been an exciting October for all the Al Groh Drinking Game players out there.

A quick recap of the Al Groh Drinking Game rules:

  1. Take two drinks any time Coach Al drop’s his favorite word – ‘circumstance
  2. Finish said drink if the word is used multiple times in a single response
  3. Take a single drink if you hear either his second-favorite (‘resolve’) or third-favorite (‘resilient’) word
  4. Finish two drinks if ‘circumstance’  is used in the same sentence with either ‘resolve’ or ‘resilient
  5. Finish three drinks if the ‘circumstanceresolveresilient‘ verbal trifecta is hit


In Monday’s presser alone, Coach Al spurred AG/DG players to follow rule #1 six times:

  1. In breaking down the math behind college football rosters for the media: “Essentially 25 percent of your team is new every year anyway, so I think it’s a standard thing. It’s part of the life circumstance of college athletics.”
  2. In describing the current state of the offense as part-Mike Groh, part-Gregg Brandon: “I would say there is probably a good blend of the two circumstances right now.”
  3. In explaining the strategy behind PR Chase Minnifield never calling for a fair catch: “It’s not a question of Laissez-faire coaching but it’s not micromanaging the circumstance and allowing a player to use his skills.”
  4. In discussing Stafford native and Maryland standout Torrey Smith: “He’s – regardless of what the circumstance was in the past he’s a superior college football player.”
  5. In dismissing the impact of prior success against the Terps: “I think we feel positive about ourselves in those circumstances [but] I think it’s unlikely that any of us feel that previous games with Maryland have any bearing on how this game is going to go.”
  6. In spinning a yarn about the importance of completion percentage: “We’re in that circumstance and the teams that are scoring in our league are teams that either have high-talent quarterbacks or kids who have been in the system for a long time and have developed their skills and got the reads and know where to go with the ball and they’re proficient in their accuracy and that’s what produces points.”

This comes one week after Groh dropped his favorite word in last week’s presser five times:

  1. In pondering one of the thousands of what-if’s surrounding his favorite player: “You know, Vic — if it weren’t for the few – a couple of circumstances had gone a little differently, Vic would have caught a pass, thrown a pass, run the ball, had a sack and played on special teams. He was – on one of our pressures, he was the first one there, a sack eventually went to Nate Collins. He had a pass called back because of a penalty. He had his catch, I believe, and if one of the passes were thrown better he would have had two.
  2. In explaining the difference between a win and a loss in teaching football: “We now have graphic examples – the players have graphic examples just this season of how the result can be dramatically different as a result of those two circumstances. Do a real good job with it and you have a real good chance of a happy result. Don’t do such a good job with it and no matter how well you run your plays or run your coverages, you get the other result.”
  3. In discussing the psychology of booing: “The interesting thing is the psychology of that, if anybody believes that that helps anybody play any better – now if it makes thousands of people feel good, then I guess that’s good for thousands of people but what they want is for their team to play better, it doesn’t necessarily – I haven’t ever been around a circumstance where players were saying, sounds like they’re getting on us, so let’s play better!”
  4. In relaying how Brandon Woods handled being benched last year: “Very admirably… obviously that’s challenging circumstances for a player.”
  5. In using more words than necessary to avoid saying ‘academic suspension’: “We understand there might be mitigating factors in there that in some cases we would have preferred not to be there but that was the reality of it and one of the things we believe in is reality as opposed to fantasy, it was a reality with some of those circumstances.”

And four weeks after Groh dropped it nine times on the Monday after the TCU loss.  Yes, nine:

  1. In reflecting on previous seasons’ turnarounds: “We have looked back at some of those circumstances… along the way in each particular case, there’s been some circumstances where just strategically and tactically we might have said, look, we are going to reshape things a little bit here at this particular time.  So there’s been elements of all of those.  Certainly not the same percentage to each particular circumstance
  2. In relaying the background behind scheduling TCU: “We were looking at a number of circumstances to fill, because I think as we have detailed, we had made an arrangement with the MAC conference.”
  3. In a long-winded response to a question about distractions facing the team: “Sometimes if you just — in a circumstance where all of the chips get loaded in front of to you start with, you have to shuffle them around a little bit to get things back to the way you want them to be.”
  4. In breaking down the impact of time of possession: “That also resulted in more plays for their team, greater time of possession and the result that we got.  So clearly we can see how one circumstance dramatically affected the conduct of the game.”
  5. In repeating a team mantra: “We have a saying… that it’s all between the white lines.  That’s all that really counts.  Except in a few memorable circumstances, there’s not much history of anybody coming off the sidelines, much less out of the stands, to impact any particular play.”
  6. In explaining 3rd-and-long strategy in FG territory: “We had a third down and eight situation beforehand which doesn’t mean we don’t want to make the first down, but in those circumstances, a lot of times, first time down the field, it’s common for a lot of teams to say, at the very least, we want to protect the field goal.”
  7. In making an excuse (or perhaps not) for Ras-I-Dowling: ”There haven’t been very many balls up the field on him… It’s going to be difficult for any guy to get a lot of picks on that circumstance.  But there have been some plays up the field that you know, I’m sure he would like to change, and then we are working with him to try to do that.”


*Social networking note: The above apply Groh’s actual Twitter feed (“what you can do for our team is react to every circumstance in the game with positive energy”), but not that of any imposter (“This afternoon we’re pracitcing the tip drill. We go to Applebees and I show them how to never leave more than 10% under any circumstances”).


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One Response to “Al Groh Drinking Game, Revisited”

  1. The ‘Doc’ Walker Drinking Game « bryanerogers’s weblog Says:

    […] Raycom broadcast of the 2009 ACC season, the creators of the Al Groh Drinking Game (recently revisited) bring you the Ric ‘Doc’ Walker Drinking […]

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