Kickoff: 12:30 PM
It was one of the most unique game environments I’ve ever been a part of. It was a roller coaster of a ride that saw this improving UGA team dismantle a very good AU defense and saw Brandon Cox cement a place in the Reggie Ball Honarary Favorite Player From a Rival Hall of Fame. It was difficult to explain and nearly impossible to predict, but in the end it was a beautiful thing.
About the AU game
First off let me say that was probably the noisiest, most raucous crowd I’ve ever seen in Sanford Stadium. From the opening kickoff it was just something special with the whole crowd dressed all in black. I admit I was skeptical about the benefit of the crowd turning out in black but it seemed to have an effect on the crowd, lending a sense of solidarity to the whole program. It was amazing.
As for the game, what else can I say besides we saw how absolutely lethal this team can be. Offensively, the emergence of Knowshon at the same time Stafford starts connecting with receivers downfield provides a balance to this offense that is truly scary (at least for opposing DCs). It all boils down to the OL though. That group is simply playing tremendously; opening holes for the running game, giving
That being said, I thought the turning point of the game was the late hit on
· Leading the
· As expected of a receiving corps with a QB the level of Woodson, there are more than a few options in the
· The UK OL has struggled at times this year keeping Woodson upright, giving up nearly 2.5 sacks per game but considering the number of times they throw the ball it makes a little more sense. The unit is a mix of upper and underclassmen, starting 2 seniors, a junior and 2 sophomores. They’ve been a bit inconsistent in terms of their protection, struggling while giving up 6 sacks to UF and 3 each to
· Bottom Line: This
· Key Matchup to watch when they have the ball: This is such a balanced team and Woodson is such a solid passer it’s hard to say what one matchup could prove the biggest key. They’re an excellent 3rd down team, converting more than 50% so getting them in 3rd and long will be key. To do that I think we’ll need more big performances from Owens, Atkins and Weston inside. If we can get a push there and make Woodson move, eventually it will result in big plays. He’s good enough that we won’t see the Cox effect take over but we should see it start to pay off late.
· As strong as the
· Up front the Wildcats most productive DL is 6-3, 268 pound sophomore Jeremy Jarmon, whose 10.5 TFLs and 9 sacks lead the team. His 9 sacks account for nearly half of
· The UK LB corps is the strength of the D. WLB Wesley Woodyard (Lagrange native…get ready to hear that about 40 times Saturday) is having a phenomenal year, leading the team in tackles including 18 against
· Bottom Line: We’re clicking on offense like we rarely have in recent memory. We’ve been especially solid on the ground recently and that’s an area that
· Key matchup to watch when we have the ball: Just watch
Game Overall UK
Looking back at last year’s loss to
Look, folks have been speculating what Richt will do next to get this team motivated after the UF celebration and the black jerseys. I don’t know that Richt feels he needs to do these motivational tactics on a regular basis. I think he caved on the jerseys after years of pressure. I think he felt that we needed a psychological shake-up in
As for the game,
· We suffered no major injuries Saturday. I had thought that
· Rennie Curran is rapidly developing into the player we all hoped he would be. He’s becoming that guy that when there’s a violent collision on the field, you just know he was involved. Same thing that happened when Thomas Davis and Greg Blue were on the field a few years back. I guess when you average over 175 tackles per year for 4 years in class 5A football in GA it means you’ve probably got a nose for the football.
· How huge is the dual emergence of Sean Bailey and Massaquoi as downfield threats? Those two guys are just catching everything right now. Better yet,
· Look, I know this is senior day and all but I would like to make a statement about Kelin Johnson. He had a great game with 2 INTs. With that being said, I think it’s important for Johnson to step up as a senior leader and understand there is a line that can easily be crossed when playing with the level of emotion that our team currently is. We have to cut back on the post play exuberance somewhat. The call that Johnson got flagged for was just too much. As a senior he knows better.
· A friend of mine had a great analogy for Penn Wagers. He’s pretty much the stereotypical southern sheriff type of ego-maniac…smug, crooked…at least that’s the way he comes off. In the stadium on Saturday he sounded like the teacher from Charlie Brown because the mic was so bad. I was surprised to hear it sound so clear on the telecast. That guy is approaching the Al Ford level of officiating, something I thought impossible.
· Verne Lundquist made the comment that we were wearing black for the first time ever but that’s not entirely accurate. As David Ching’s blog indicated this week (great blog by the way), the 1942 Football Illustrated showed Heisman winner Frankie Sinkwich wearing a black jersey. That was also the year we won the national title…also the last time we scored 40 or more in 3 consecutive games. Sinkwich is also wearing a black jersey in his Heisman portrait. While no one has actually verified if they wore black that season, those two things point to the fact we likely wore black at some point back then.
· Speaking of blogs, I’ve been kicking around the idea of converting the format of these things to a blog. If you have a strong opinion either way, let me know.
· That atmosphere Saturday was just pure fun. I mean everyone not wearing orange and blue was having a blast, recruits, fans, players, even announcers (Verne and Gary dancing was particularly “interesting”), well everyone except Penn Wagers.
· I loved the black jerseys but I hope we use some restraint in how often we see them. The less often they are used, the more special they are.
· How about Ron Zook at
· OK, I know it’s next week, but who had Kansas-Missouri being a game with serious national title implications between two top 6 teams? Not me.
· Looking back, it probably wasn’t the smartest idea to give out stuffed footballs. Pretty much a 100% chance those are going to end up on the field or at least getting tossed around the stands. Reminded me of the Chic-fil-A cows they gave out at the Peach Bowl that one year. Those things were everywhere.
Have a safe weekend,