Single Digits and Oh the Discipline
Being that this is a blog about college football, and more specifically, the University of Georgia college football team, can you imagine the discipline it takes to write nothing at all for the interminable months between the bowl game and the season opener? Sure, some bloggers write about recruiting, spring ball, off-season scooter incidents, AD’s Gone Wild, etc. But not me. No sir. I have such mad discipline that I am not even sure that it is yet appropriate for me to awaken this blog from its hibernation. But as of today, we are within single digit days from kick-off – nine to be exact – and I am on vacation so I have enough time on my hands to break protocol and start talking football.
Actually, I am the kind of person that tries to not get too excited about things too far in advance. For example, Leslie and I are on a flight to Aspen where we will spend 4 days and then will go to Red Rocks to see David Gray and Ray LaMontagne on Monday night. This is basically a dream vacation and I cannot wait to get boots on the ground in Aspen. But until American Airlines took our checked luggage and charged us $50 for the privilege, I could not start relaxing and feeling like I am on vacation. Naturally, I did enough research to formulate some ideas about how to spend our days in Apsen and I splurged for second row/center tickets at Red Rocks and downloaded Ray’s newly released album “God Willin’ and the Creek Don’t Rise.” But I won’t really be fired up until I see the first Rocky Mountain and taste my first Colorado made craft brew. That’s just me. I think it is a Pisces thing.
Anyway… that’s how I am about football season as well. I watch and wait and bide my time and save the adrenaline until I can smell the freshly cut grass of Sanford Stadium on the morning of the opener. I think this mentality is compounded this pre-season because of all of the unknowns surrounding our football team, some of which are anticipated with great optimism (new defensive philosophy) and some of which cause more than enough anxiety (freshman QB with no depth.) I have followed the practice reports and the heavily trafficked blogs daily and the news is so bland and vanilla that it actually makes me happy. The absence of bad news has been good news. Also, the absence of irrational exuberance has been comforting. This is my kind of season. We will go in barely in the Top 25, with little or no national spotlight and pressure and being given only a slight chance to win the SEC East. Under the radar, as they say. I like this. I prefer to be underrated. As a former Naval Officer, I appreciate the tactical advantages of the element of surprise. I just hope the surprises are pleasant ones for us Dawg fans.
I think the over/under on wins this regular season is 10. I think that I think that every year. It might have something to do with the multiple 10 win season we have enjoyed under Mark Richt in the past decade. In my view, if we win less than 10 games, I will be disappointed. If we win more than 10 games, I will be elated and if we win exactly 10 games, can I pick the ones we win? If so, I could still end up elated! Based on the so-called experts, my expectations are inflated. But, I will stand by them and I will hold out much optimism for the following primary reasons (to be discussed in greater detail in subsequent posts):
AJ Green – if he remains healthy… Oh boy!
Veteran and beastly offensive line – Lord, please let Sturdivant remain healthy all year and let this line run block like they did against the nats in the season finale.
Tight End U – How do we utilize all of these guys enough?
Two-headed Tailback King/Ealey – Like the O-line, please start this season like you finished last season.
This quote: “Our defensive philosophy is that it is not our job to stop the offense, it is their job to stop us.” No more of the old bend until you break mentality.
Speed on the corners and Hammers at safety. B. Smith, Boykin, Cuff, Rambo, N. Williams, et al. This should be fun to watch.
Death from the Edge – This means you Justin Houston and Darryl Gamble.
Groza/Guy Winners? – Walsh and Butler
Indeed, I can find ample reasons to think that this team can win at least 10 regular season games. What do you think?