Friday, November 30, 2012

My Pre-Game Talk to Georgia (if I was Mark Richt)

[Scene: Georgia Dome Locker Room 10 minutes before kickoff]

Coach Mark Richt: Listen up. I need everyone who isn't a player or coach to leave the locker room.

[Locker Room clears of all but players and coaches]

Coach Richt: Men, you have worked hard to get here and you know what you need to do out there today. And I have zero doubt that you are going to do it. You're going to win tonight because you are going to focus on whipping your man on every play. Whip his ass and make sure he knows you whipped his ass and then whip his ass again. Whip his ass up and down this field and whip his ass all the way to the to the state line. You don't ever give up on a play and you be there to have your teammates back all the way.We are going to win this as a team by individually whipping some ass on every damn play.

Let me tell you this... I don't like Nick Saban. He is a sawed off little tyrant and our teams have whipped his in the past and we are going to do it again tonight. I promise you this, I will allow you to score as many points as you can score tonight. We are going to press the accelerator to the floor and not take our foot off until the final horn. The sky is the limit tonight and there is not going to be any stopping you. Period. Failure is not an option. We are going to win and we are going to win convincingly. It starts with you whipping someone's ass on the opening play, the next play and every single play until the last play. Just WHIP SOMEBODY'S ASS.

Men, you have said since summer that this is "Our Team, Our Time, No Regrets". YOU are the TEAM and THIS is the TIME. The last part is up to you and what you do for the next few hours.

Now buckle up, hunker down and Get After Their Asses!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Why Do We Even Play The Game? (Redux Article)

As a lifelong Dawg fan, this SEC Championship Game against Alabama is the type of game you dream about but according to most of the talking heads and the Paul Finebaum Show we are awaiting a funeral. Despite our team playing lights out for the past 5 games, if we don't show up with our A game in the Dome, we are waiting for a funeral.

This would be an appropriate death dirge chant...
Where will we all be 1000 years from now? (hunnnhh)
Where will we all be 1000 years from now? (hunnnhh)
Where will we all be 1000 years from now? (hunnnhh)
Keep repeating that while pushing the boulder up the hill, only to have it roll back down.

I would usually look at this game and try to figure out what I think the Dawgs must do to win the thing. But, at this point, I am going the other way and channeling Munson at his poor-mouthing best. There is no way we can beat these guys. They are just too big and physical and they have all the momentum. They have the greatest coach of all time. They have the greatest program of all time. Our defense was once adrift like a rudderless ship. And our offensive line was struggling to block for the run, their pass protection was terrible earlier in the season. Our Quarterback is 1-49 against ranked teams. Mark Richt is 1-211 against ranked teams. Our University President is 1-976 against ranked teams. Bama is ranked #2 after being ranked #1 for yeares. We are doomed. Let the talk about Georgia being unable to win the big games begin anew. We will be lucky if we even score. This could be as bad as when Bama came to Athens during Goff's tenure and we lost 31-0.

There is only one thing that gives me even the slightest glimmer of hope and that is the shape of the football. If the damn thing was round, we would be done. But, it ain't round and therefore it could take a few funny hops our way. We will need every break, every weird occurrence, every freak accident, etc to go our way. Our team just isn't man enough to win this toe-to-toe, mano-to-mano. To put it another way, we will have a slim chance of winning if we play like this is Auburn or Georgia Tech instead of Alabama and have Bama play like they are South Carolina trying to hold on to the SEC East. This means that we don't drop first down and touchdown passes, but Bama does. This means we return a kickoff or punt or interception for a touchdown, but Bama doesn't. This means that we don't have any touchdowns negated by penalty, but Bama does. This means that we don't have a kick blocked or give up a fake punt, but Bama does both. You see, these odds are long... but, in the immortal words of Lloyd Christmas, "You're telling me we've got a chance!" It's slim...we're talking frog's hair slim. But we do have a chance. And for that infinitesimally small chance... I will once again make the trek down to the Dome for hours of misery or ecstasy or a torturous mixture of both. 

While this may seem like a funeral, I will be praying for a resurrection. Come on Dawgs... Hunker the Fuck Down.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Game Day and a Pesky Bee to Swat

Georgia hosts Georgia Tech in what should become the Four In A Row, Baby game and 17 of the last 18 in the record books. Some of those games have been close. Will this one be close? Looking back to last Saturday's 45-14 win over the triple-optioning Georgia Southern Eagles we should get some insight into how our defense will handle Tech;s triple option. Southern ran the ball 58 times and racked up 302 yards rushing and scored two touchdowns. Despite the 302 yards, Southern only reached the red zone twice. Importantly, Southern only gained 31 yards in the third quarter as Georgia got dialed in on the speed and execution of the triple option. At the end of the 3rd the score was 38-7 and the 122 yards Southern gained in the 4th quarter was an afterthought.

Surely the Dawgs have benefited from from seeing this offense run by the capable Georgia Southern offense but they certainly see a few Paul Johnson wrinkles today and a few more timely pass attempts. The key for the Dawgs will be in limiting the big plays. Tech's defense ranks 76th in the land in scoring defense and fired the defensive coordinator mid-season. This is a team that has surrendered 42, 49, 47, 41 and 50 to ACC juggernauts and Middle Tennessee State. Despite the amount of hate and determination this defense will play with today, they aren't going to hold Georgia under 40 points. They will have to decide whether they want to load up to stop the run like Southern did and then die by aerial assault from the nation's highest rated passer, Aaron Murray. If they sit back to defend the pass, Gurshall will run over and around them for a big day like 2009. Unless Tech gets out front early, Georgia will have the luxury of running a balanced attack and may choose the weapons of Tech's destruction.

I think we will see a bigger day passing than running. But it would suit me to see Gurley and Marshall each eclipse 100 yards rushing. I also hope to see another big day for the tight ends (as I always do.)

Defensively I expect to see another day of assignment, disciplined, run to the ball gang tackling. This should be a great day for the linebackers and I can't wait to watch them blow up the triple option all day!

I keep going back and forth on what I think the final score will be but I have settled on 45 - 20 with the Dawgs on top.

In other news, this is a big day for the SEC against the best teams in the ACC. Georgia is the only one favored. Florida State is favored over Florida and Clemson is favored over South Carolina. I am picking Florida to win 23-20 in OT and South Carolina to win 33-24.

Go Dawgs! GATA!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Speed Bumps and Humpty Humps

It turns out Auburn was merely a speed bump again this year as we again won by 38 points to make the tally 83-7 in the post Scam Newton era. The Dawgs played a nearly flawless game and this defense has now done it 3 weeks in a row. It will be fun to see how they handle Georgia Southern's triple option as our on-the-field preparation for the Four In A Row, Baby game against Tech next week.

I am taking my kids to Athens this weekend and we leave in a few minutes. Looking forward to a fun albeit cold weekend.

Dawgs will win 45-14.

Go Dawgs! GATA!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Can the Dawgs Even the Series in the Deep South's Oldest Rivalry?

We start this day with an all-time ledger of 53-54-8 with the Tigers from Auburn. All indications are that this is the day that we even the series. Auburn enters 2-7 with nary a win in the SEC. The Dawgs enter 8-1 and set to secure a return trip to the Dome for the SEC Championship Game if they can, as expected, win the SEC East with a victory on the Plains tonight.

Auburn's defense has been surprisingly atrocious. Surprising because they now have Brian Van Gorder coordinating. Admittedly, most Dawg fans were worried about this hire when it was announced. Now, we scratch our heads as we gaze upon Auburn's national ranking of 87th in Total Defense. It is stunning that BVG's defense is playing so poorly.

On offense, the Tigers are even worse, ranked 116th in the nation in Scoring Offense with a paltry 19.2 points per game. In Total Offense they are ranked 116th.

Do those numbers get you fired up? NOT SO FAST! Kentucky is ranked even worse on offense and we let them hang around for 60 minutes. As awful as Auburn has been at times, they only lost to #9 LSU by a score of 12-10 and to #10 Clemson 26-19. Last year the Auburn game was our annual "open a 55 gallon drum of whoop ass" game. This year, we already had that game against Vanderbilt so I am not expecting a redux of the 45-7 thrashing we visited upon Auburn last year. Instead, I think Auburn will come up guns blazing and may even take an early lead. I'm not talking about a 1993 Ben Leard 28-0 Auburn lead. But maybe 7-0 in the first quarter. However, Georgia will punch back and will hammer Auburn with a balanced offensive attack and will gradually add to the lead until when it is over, it won't look close but it won't feel that way while it is happening. Figure something along the lines of 7-7 at the end of the 1st; 17-10 at the half; 27-13 at the end of 3rd; and 30-13 final. It won't be nearly as gratifying as last year but every win on the plains is a beautiful game.

A few things I hope to see:

- 75% completion Aaron Murray, not SC/FL Aaron Murray.
- More tightend (like more cowbell only better). With Marlon Brown now out, I would like to see Lynch and Rome step up.
- Gurshall rushing for over 200 would be sweet. We haven't been treated to a long one in a while. That ends today.
- All Jarvis all the time. Auburn OL Chad Slade certainly issued the challenge by saying that it's not hard to stop Jarvis Jones. We shall see.
- Smothering defense. Today, we find out if our defense is truly "back" if they can make it 3 consecutive games of steady, consistent, assignment football and shut down Auburn like they did Florida and Ole Miss. I think they will. Yielding around 13 points will be a good outcome.
- SEC East Baby. Get it done.

Go Dawgs! GATA!

Friday, November 02, 2012

Dawgs Hunker Down on the RBBs

Like Saban... I don't have time for this shit.

Georgia must win tomorrow and thus they will win. I am not confident that we will make it easy but we will end up with the W. We may even cover the spread with a late security TD.

The key to the game will be to maintain some defensive continuity from last week with guys playing as a unit and playing assignment football. If Jarvis is healthy, I alredy feel comfortable.

On offense, we need to continue running the ball with some authority but also need to be sharp in the passing game. We can't be one-dimensional, ever. So I hope to see Murray play well for 4 quarters and for all 3 running backs to get carries. Don't wear out young Todd Gurley if we don't have to.

I am now leaving for the 6 hour drive and for some banqueting tonight. Sic Vos Non Vobis.

Go Dawgs! GATA!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Sublime Game in Jax

I finally had time to watch the DVR replay of the most sublime football game I have ever witnessed. The 2012 WLOCP won by Georgia 17-9 will go down as one of the all-time greatest hits in UGA football history. Indeed, for me, it was a great weekend beginning on Thursday night with family and great friends. I went to a Halloween Party Friday night as Wolverine (this will be relevant shortly)...

I was seated on the second row around the 15 yard line near the end zone where Malcolm Mitchell's Miracle occurred. He was so close to us I felt like we could slap him five as he passed by and then broke two more tackles to get into the endzone. If all the improbable things happen and UGA ends up in the MNC Game, that play will rank right up there near the top with Run Lindsay Run, as will the strip by Jarvis Jones that prevented the Gators from scoring late.

During the game, things were a blur of frustration and elation. On the one hand, we never relinquished the lead. But on the other hand, we were never more than a single score ahead. To call it a nerve-wrenching, nail-chewing, voice-losing emotional roller-coaster would be an understatement. Perhaps a few pictures are worth more than a few million words here.

What a beautiful sight!
I don't think I could verbally describe unbridled euphoria... but I know it when I see it. And these pictures show it.

This appeared in the AJC. Wolverine made the paper.
Wolverine also made it on TV.

And Wolverine again on TV.

Combining what I witnessed in the bleachers with watching the replay... I have a handful of specific comments and then I am moving on to Ole Miss.

-  Jarvis Jones continues to make me think he is Grendel and can crush a mead-hall full of our opponents when angered. His stat line from this game would make a damn fine season for many players: 12 solo tackles, 5 for loss, 3 sacks, 2 caused fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries.

- Zander Ogletree blocked his ass off. He flat out pancaked Bostic and McCray a few times. His brother, on the other hand, missed way too many tackles. Alec needs to tighten that up and stop leaving his feet. Surely this has already been brought to his attention in the film room... but if not, someone send him the memo.

- Todd Gurley ran with great authority and his ball security was impeccable. The comparisons to Trent Richardson are not a stretch at all. When Gurley needed a breather, I felt like Boo Malcolm would have been a better substitute because of the insane physicality of this game and Boo's physical running style would have perhaps been better suited than Marshall's.

- Jordan Jenkins looked nothing like a freshmen. He was disruptive and disciplined and played fast. I look forward to watching him play for many more games!

- Our kickoff coverage team played like kamikazes. Speaking of... I hope Sheldon Dawson is ok. Man did he fly down the field like a missile several times.

- Aaron Murray got it done. It wasn't his best game statistically, but like Buck Belue's Sugar Bowl... it was his best win (to date.) Importantly, he made clutch throws in the fourth quarter which directly lead the team to victory.

- Mark Richt - I love him.

- Defensive backfield - all of these guys played great from hanging in there on tight coverage, to coming through big on blitzes, to hanging on to interceptions, to proving great run support and open-field tackling. Time after time, these guys made plays. Rambo, Williams, Commings, Swann, Smith. Great job guys.

- Penalties... whattya gonna do. Both sides got punished.

- The Gators... For once, the Gators played a game like the Dawgs have played far too often during the past two decades. To the Gator folks that say they gave the game away... I know how you feel. And thanks, we accept your charity.

- Fans... Man was Dawgnation on the loose like a pack of 50,000 Junkyard Dawgs. It was great being there with y'all and experiencing one of the greatest victories of our time.

Now, on to Ole Miss! Focus. Play hard. Play smart. Win. GATA!!!

 By the way, the Wolverine chops are coming off tomorrow morning.

Monday, October 29, 2012

That Was Sublime

Wow. Just wow! This one was historic. Jarvis Jones is Grendel. That is all.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

This is the WLOCP Week and It Seems Like A Wake

Living on Amelia Island, I always look forward to the World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party but this year it feels like we are awaiting a funeral. The team has barely had a pulse in the last two outings and the defense has been pronounced dead. Unless they can reanimate like in The Walking Dead and rise up to start eating Gator flesh... well... we are waiting for a funeral.

This would be an appropriate death dirge chant...
Where will we all be 1000 years from now? (hunnnhh)
Where will we all be 1000 years from now? (hunnnhh)
Where will we all be 1000 years from now? (hunnnhh)
Keep repeating that while pushing the boulder up the hill, only to have it roll back down.

I usually look at this game and try to figure out what I think the Dawgs must do to win the thing. But, at this point, I am going the other way and channeling Munson at his poor-mouthing best. There is no way we can beat these guys. They are just too big and physical and they have all the momentum. Our defense is adrift like a rudderless ship. And while our offensive line is struggling to block for the run, their pass protection is terrible. Our Quarterback is 0-49 against ranked teams. Mark Richt is 0-211 against ranked teams. Our University President is 0-976 against ranked teams. The Gators are ranked #3. We are doomed. Let the talk about the 4 of the last 19 begin anew (ignoring that we did win 3 of the last 8). We will be lucky if we even score. This could be as bad as Herschel's final game against Florida, but in reverse, in which we lose 44-0.

There is only one thing that gives me even the slightest glimmer of hope and that is the shape of the football. If the damn thing was round, we would be done. But, it ain't round and therefore it could take a few funny hops our way. We will need every break, every weird occurrence, every freak accident, etc to go our way. Our team just isn't man enough to win this toe-to-toe, mano-to-mano. To put it another way, we will have a slim chance of winning if we don't play like we are in Jacksonville and the Gators play like they are Georgia playing in Jacksonville. This means that we don't drop first down and touchdown passes, but the Gators do. This means we return a kickoff or punt or interception for a touchdown, but the Gators don't. This means that we don't have any touchdowns negated by penalty, but the Gators do. This means that we don't have a kick blocked or give up a fake punt, but the Gators do both. You see, these odds are long... but, in the immortal words of Lloyd Christmas, "You're telling me we've got a chance!" It's slim...we're talking frog's hair slim. But we do have a chance. And for that infinitesimally small chance... I will once again make the trek down to Jax for 4 hours of tailgating followed by hours of misery or ecstasy or a torturous mixture of both. 

While this may seem like a funeral, I will be praying for a resurrection. Come on Dawgs... Hunker the Fuck Down.

Monday, October 08, 2012

Was the 1966 GA-FL Game Worth It?

I was merely a toddler when Bill Stanfill and George Patton beat the ever living shit out of Steve Spurrier and knocked his Gators out of their quest for their first SEC title. Apparently in response to Spurrier whining about a late hit, Stanfill said, "Excuse me, Stevie, I didn't mean to step on your skirt." Probably nothing in his life had the impact of that demoralizing defeat, for he dedicated his coaching career to beating Georgia and he has damn well done that over and over. His thirst for vengeance fueled an 11-1 mark against Georgia as the Florida head coach and a 4-4 mark at South Carolina but now with three straight wins. He has always been able to motivate his troops to play their best game against Georgia and it is quite impressive how one with such a strong, singular focus can achieve their foremost objective with such a high rate of success. (However, I must note that 6 of his wins were against Ray Goff.)

South Carolina has a tremendous defensive line and one of the greatest SEC tailbacks in many years. But I am curious to see just how they will play against LSU and Florida and even Clemson.They will probably win 2 of the 3 but I doubt they will play with the urgency seen Saturday.

I will be happy to see him retire. I don't think there is another coach out there with quite the malice in his heart for Georgia. It just isn't possible.

Friday, October 05, 2012

Dawgs To Play Cocks With Bennett Out

The headline doesn't quite have the same zip as the legendary Lewis Grizzard headline from the mid 1960's. But, after the Dawgs take care of business in Columbia East tomorrow, we will all be a bunch of Happy Dicks.

This game is huge for both teams. I have read over at Get The Picture where some Dawg fans say this is the biggest game for UGA since the 1980 showdown with South Carolina that matched Herschel Walker against George Rogers. The Dawgs won that close game 13-10 and went on to an undefeated National Championship season. The comparisons are natural with both teams highly ranked and with both teams featuring national headline grabbing tailbacks - Marcus Lattimore for the Cocks and Gurshall (Todd Gurley/Keith Marshall) for the Dawgs. But, to me and from a Dawgs perspective, this game feels much more like the famous 2002 "Man Enough" game against Alabama in Tuscaloosa. Georgia is off to a 5-0 start and has looked pretty good in getting there but some doubt lingers about how tough this team is on defense and on the offensive line. In 2002, the Dawgs were 4-0 going into Tuscaloosa with the same doubts being bandied about and none more famously than when Pat Dye quipped that Georgia was not "Man Enough" to beat Alabama in Bryant-Denny Stadium.

So, here we are, ten years later, and the Dawgs have a major road test against a team that many wonder if we are tough enough to beat on the road. In 2002, the Dawgs out-rushed and out-passed Alabama and led the majority of the game until a late pick six put the Tide up by one. Then, in dramatic fashion, the Dawgs drove the field and won on a last second field goal by Billy Bennett. Tomorrow, we play the Cocks without our leading receiver, Michael Bennett, who we lost for the season on Tuesday with a torn ACL.

If Georgia is going to prove to be "Man Enough" tomorrow, the defense will have to come up with an answer for slowing down the guy who crushed our souls in the fourth quarter last year, Marcus Lattimore when he rushed for over half of his total of 178 yards. Lattimore is the type of back who seems to get stronger and stronger as the game goes on and this is discomforting considering the way a tired looking Georgia defense was gashed by Tennessee Rajion Neal in the fourth quarter last Saturday night.

If Georgia is going to prove to be "Man Enough" tomorrow, the offensive line will have to come up with answers for the devastating ends Jadaveon Clowney and Devin Taylor. At 6'-6" and 6'-8" respectively, these two will make it hard for Aaron Murray to throw over and around them when he is not running away from them. Among the many things that hurt the Dawgs in the game last year, it was probably Clowney's sack and forced fumble that was recovered for a TD that was the death blow. That play in the fourth quarter gave the Gamecocks a 10 point lead from which we never recovered. This year, the Clowney/Taylor duo account for 7 sacks and 13 tackles for loss.

If Georgia is going to prove to be "Man Enough" tomorrow, our special teams must play well and possibly must play perfectly. In last years 3 point loss to the Gamecocks, our special teams missed a 33 yard field goal and allowed a fake punt to go for a 68 yard touchdown. This year, our special teams have been up and down and our extra point kicking has been an adventure to say the least.

So what will Georgia do to prove it is "Man Enough"?  On defense, the Dawgs will scheme to limit Marcus Lattimore. That means strong run support for the safeties and leaving the corners on islands in man coverage. On paper, Georgia's athletes on defense should be able to beat Carolina's athletes on offense. But we have to account for Spurrier's playcalling and adjustments. It will be critical for the Dawgs that Todd Grantham is on his A game in the coaching chess match. As much as we all hate Spurrier, he is crafty and resourceful. But, we should be better off in focusing on shutting down the run and challenging QB Connor Shaw to beat us with his arm. Shaw is a quite capable thrower and is also a running threat but his receivers are not nearly as dangerous as what we faced last week with Justin Hunter and Cordarelle Patterson. If we can't get to Shaw, like we couldn't get to Bray last week (until late in the 4th quarter) we could be in for a long day. Historically, the Cocks have hurt us with a tight end. Watch for that again. But, if the tight end is there best weapon tomorrow, it should bode well for the Dawgs. The worst case scenario is that they are able to remain balanced all day long between running and passing. Of course, the score of the game will dictate, to some degree, how they will call their offense so getting ahead of them early would be good to put pressure on Shaw and company.

So how do we get ahead of them early? Blame Bobo. Our offense will need to play wide open using all of its weapons and from all of its formations. We perform so much better when we are not conservative. It stinks that we lost Michael Bennett but the others will take up the slack. It is time now for Malcolm Mitchell to get back to being the receiver he was last season and the emergence of Marlon Brown as a clutch guy could make him the new preferred third down target. Then again, Chris Conley has made some clutch catches in his brief career as well. And let's not forget about our tight ends. But, we must also establish our running game. I believe that running the ball effectively and throwing the ball on typical running downs will help neutralize the pass rush of those bookends. It is on third and long that I worry about the matchups. For this reason, here is what I think is the whole key to the game... managing our offense to have lots of third and shorts (less than 3 yards) but when it is third and long, don't get too cute and be willing to accept that sometimes we will need to throw it away and live to fight another day.

I really wonder if we will continue to see big runs by Gurshall even against a defense as good as South Carolina. The best running back the Cocks have faced is Vanderbilt's Zac Stacy who they held to a 3.69 average on 13 carries. On the year, they are surrendering only 2.24 yards per carry. If we are going to run the ball well, we must keep them guessing by throwing on first down and by blocking better than we have all year. I think it is going to be tough sledding but I still expect to see our backs popping loose for a few runs of 20+ yards. It will certainly be great to see one or more of those turn into home runs like we saw last week.

Finally, and this is obvious and cliche but never more true... we cannot have the turnovers we gave away last year against the Cocks (and last week against UT in the second quarter) and we must have better average field position. I am sure that has been addressed all week so I will trust in our coaches and our players that we will do better in these areas.

I feel like this game is going to be one of maximum stress with much back and forth and a mighty struggle to pull away. But, I also feel like we are going to come home with a win. My guess... UGA 29 - S. Carolina 24.

Go Dawgs! GATA!

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Tuesday Musings

A handful of thoughts for this Tuesday evening...

  • The running game through the first three quarters was an A+ effort for the entire offense. Marshall and Gurley are tremendous in space but the O-line has to help get them into space and then the receivers have to block downfield for the huge runs to happen. Marshall looks like he is gliding effortlessly when he is in his sprinting gear and the way he made the safety, who had an angle, tackle his vapor trail was most impressive. On Gurley's 55 yard TD, he did a great job cutting outside and then slowed up and gave an inside feint to set up the downfield block that sprung him into the end zone. That move was pure instinct. I don't think Bryan McClendon is teaching that in practice.
  • Durability... Later in the game we saw Gurley hobbling a little and then Marshall limped off after a collision. I was wondering why we wouldn't bring in Ken Malcome with fresh legs and his punishing running style. Or Richard Samuel. Was it a ball security concern with Malcome? Was it because Gurley still posed the biggest run threat? Was it because things were happening to fast to consider inserting Malcome?
  • Was Wootentheballcarrier certain to score a touchdown on that 3rd down slant in the fourth quarter? From my seat, it looked like there would have been no safety in position to stop him and he had already run past the corner. Damn. Just Damn!
  • I guess UT has a really good offensive line. Is that news to Tennessee people? Either that, or we were just playing way too soft against the run. They continued to move the pile on most carries and gain an extra couple of yards time after time. We can't be that soft against Marcus Lattimore.
  • I liked the couple of throws to our tight ends and want to see more.
  • I really really hope we got most of our "shitting the bed" out of our system in the second quarter so that we do not have a repeat of what happened last year with the Cocks, which eerily resembled what we witnessed for an incredulous 6 minutes against Tennessee.
  • Thank goodness Sanders Commings was back at corner. I hope the defensive secondary will gel even more this week for the second game that we have had everyone available. Oh by the way... we didn't have Alec Ogletree for the SC game last year. GATA Tree.
  • Tech losing to Middle Tennessee State by 21 points is pure awesomesauce. There are no other words.
  • The Alabama teabagger got 2 years in jail. There's getting drunk and doing stupid shit and then there is colossally stupid shit. Two years. Ouch.
  • Zach Mettenberger shaved his pornstache just in time for his trip to the Swamp where such grooming would have fit right in. Will it help his play? We shall see.

That's it for now. Go Dawgs! GATA!

UGA-UT Scare: I'm Glad It Happened

Remember the movie Hollywood Knights? Maybe Georgia had a little Turk in them Saturday night. Watch around the 8:30 mark to see what I mean.

So we made some huge mistakes. We threw a pick six. We gave away the ball deep in our territory two other times. We mishandled a punt and a kickoff making us start at the 1 yard line twice. We did most of this in a 6 minute span in the second quarter  that saw our 27-10 lead become a 30-27 deficit. I'M GLAD WE DID IT.

So we were unable to get first downs or score in the fourth quarter causing our defense to stay on the field entirely too long and play with the narrowest of leads in a game that should have been put away much earlier. I'M GLAD WE DID IT.

So we failed to stop the run or get a QB sack and yielded a Willie Martinez-like total of 37 points in defense. I'M GLAD WE DID IT.

We looked great, we looked terrible and everything in between, but we got a victory over Tennessee and tied the all-time series with the Vols for games played in Athens. I'M GLAD WE DID IT.

I have been a long believer in the adage "Success is a terrible teacher." Here are two more adages... "Iron is forged in fire"  and "The hotter the fire, the stronger the steel." Without a doubt, in the fourth quarter Saturday night, the fire was hot and the Dawgs had their backs against a wall to prevent Tennessee from tying the game or taking the lead. The pressure was dialed up and the coaches, players and fans all had to hunker down not just "one more time" but several more times. The result (defensively)... interception, forced fumble, interception.

Obviously, there are some "coachable moments" as a result of the mistakes made Saturday night from special teams to pass coverage to blocking assignments to catching the football on third down conversions. I am a glass half-full guy, so I will construe this as a positive.

Suppose we had not had the meltdown in the second quarter that handed Tennessee 20 points and the game had been an easy cruise to a comfortable victory. We would feel great about the win and more confident about the game with South Carolina this coming Saturday. But, what would we know about how this team would respond under tremendous pressure? The only other evidence we have is from the fourth quarter in Columbia West when, in a similar situation, Missouri had the ball with a chance to tie or take the lead and we intercepted and forced a fumble on consecutive possessions to put the game away. The other three games were blow outs in which our starters basically only played three quarters. Now, we have had to fight, scrap and dig deep for the full 60 minutes and found a way to win. In my opinion, that should serve us much better than a comfortable win would have. So yes... I'M GLAD WE DID IT.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Dawgs Will Score 40+ Again

I have screwed around and run out of time to write much about tomorrow's game against Tennessee. I am getting on the road in a few minutes to head to Athens for my first trip of the season.

I am expecting Georgia to score more that 40 points again because Tennessee didn't shown the ability to contain the run or pass against the Gators two weeks ago and these Dawgs are excellent at both. Florida's Jeff Driskel had a personal best 195 passer rating against the Vols and the Gators rolled up 336 yards rushing in Knoxville. Frankly, I believe Vanderbilt's defense is tougher than the UT defense but that doesn't necessarily mean I expect us to score 48 points in 3 quarters. But, I am thinking we will score between 40 and 44 points. This Georgia offense has shown so much variety and has talent all over the place. I would like to say that we will establish a power running game and then use that to open up the play-action passing attack. But really, I have no idea what we will see because it is all predicated upon what UT does on defense. I am really just looking forward to seeing the Dawgs take what Tennessee is willing to give them and then keep taking and taking and taking.

On the other side of the ball, Tyler Bray has shown that he can throw the ball down the fild and has two great receivers in Justin Hunter and Cordarelle Patterson. But, they have shown no running game. The Dawgs will have an opportunity to turn this into a one-dimensional attack and when that happens, guys like Jarvis Jones and Cornelius Washington will pin their ears back and GATQB.

A few things that would be nice to see in person...

1. Another 300 yard day passing for Murray.
2. Another 100 yard day rushing for Gurley.
3. A handful of sacks for Jarvis Jones.
4. More Marlon Brown studding out.
5. A fat guy touchdown for John Jenkins or one of his brethren in the trenches.
6. A big play from Jay Rome.
7. Ogletree and Rambo on the field!!!

I'm outta here.


Kiss My Ass, Kick My Ass, Kick Your Ass: Season 3, Volume 3

Kiss My Ass -Andre Ware.

Last week during the broadcast of the Florida - Kentucky game, as the Florida defense made Kentucky QB Morgan Newton look like, well, Morgan Newton, the Kentucky defense was busy making Florida QB Jeff Driskel look a little like Aaron Murray. So much so, that Andre Ware actually declared Driskel the best QB in the SEC. That's quaint Andre, but awfully premature. Through four games this season Murray has 1092 yards, 10 TDs and a rating of 182. Bama's AJ McCarron has 819 yards, 10 TDs and a 188 rating. Sackerlina's Connor Shaw and Dylan Thompson each have a rating of 166 and better stats than Driskel though with less plays due to Shaw's injury. Even Tyler Wilson for the hapless Razorbacks has 982 yards, 8 TDs and a 177 rating. Your boy has 698 yards, 4 TDs and a rating of 158. Maybe, one day, Driskel will be the best QB in the SEC, but right now, that honor belongs to Aaron Murray, A.J McCarron, or Connor Shaw. For making such an asinine comment, Andre Ware can Kiss My Ass.

Kick My Ass - Marlon Brown.

Watching Marlon Brown absorbing all of these passes into his huge mitts this season and seeing how defenders just bounce off of his big frame have caused me to realize that he is a tough customer and not someone I would want to tangle with. He is listed at 6-5 and 215. He doesn't have a big weight advantage on me, but he has the reach, youth and those big hands that definitely make big fists that make me certain that if provoked, Marlon Brown would Kick My Ass.

Kick Your Ass - Tyler Bray.

Tennessee QB Tyler Bray is (or at least was) a cocky little shit who had (and maybe still has) a punkish little habit of celebrating big plays like a total douche bag. It appears like a double throat slit, but I think those are automatic penalties now so maybe it is some other similar gesture. Anyway, for a string bean who hasn't won any big games, I don't get the cockiness. Maybe he has toned that down. He hasn't had much to celebrate against UGA in two tries and hopefully won't have anything to celebrate this Saturday. Tyler, I saw where you and Aaron Murray became friends at the Manning Camp this summer, still, because you are going to be trying to beat our Georgia Bulldogs this weekend, I think it would be a good time to just up and Kick Your Ass.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Straight Out Da Dawg House

Inspired by this Tweet...

And this song...
"Straight Out Da Dawg House"
You are now about to witness the strength of Dawg knowledge

[Verse One: Bacarri Rambo]

Straight out da Dawg House, crazy hard hitter named Rambo
From the gang called Dawgz With Attitudes
When I'm called off, U gettin' sawed off
Blitz the QB, and bodies are hauled off
You too, boy, if ya mess with me
The refs are gonna hafta come and get me
Off yo ass, that's how I'm goin out
For the punk Volunteers that's showin out
Gamecocks start to mumble, they wanna rumble
Mix em and cook em in a pot like gumbo
Goin off on a Florida Gator like that
with a shoulder that's pointed at yo ass
So give it up smooth
Ain't no tellin when I'm down for a jack move
Here's a knock out hit to keep ya cuckoo
with a smash record like my boy Greg Blue
This Number eighteen is the tool
Don't make me smack you like a fool
Me n you can go toe to toe, yeah maybe
I'm knockin playas out tha box, daily
yo weekly, monthly and yearly
until them dumb wide receivers see clearly
that I'm down with the capital S-E-C
Boy you can't play with me
So when I'm in your neighborhood, you better duck
Coz Rambo is crazy as f#@%
As I leave, believe I'm leavin no doubt
but when I come back, boy, I'm comin straight out da Dawg House


( This da Dawg House, This da Dawg House)

[Zander] Yo Alec
[Alec] Whassup?
[Zander] Tell em where you from!

[Verse Two: Alec Ogletree]

Straight out da Dawg House, another crazy ass hitta
More punks I smoke, yo, my rep gets bigga
I'm a bad hard hitter and you know this
But the pansy ass Jackets don't show this
But I don't give a crap, I'ma get my snaps
If not from the tackles, from gettin some sacks
Just like burglary, the definition is 'sackin'
And when I'm coming in hot it's called 'crackin'
I'll mash a quarterback in a minute
I find a gap in da line, I go up in it
So if you're at a game in the front row
I'm a give you something you can cheer fo
You'll probably get pumped like you supposed to
But that shows me, Dawg, you're not opposed to
A crazy hard hitter from tha Newnan
Attitude legit cause I'm tearin up shit
Ogletree controls the situation
For any dumb player that starts to say sumptin
I'm the right man cause I'm the man himself
every time I pull my helmet off the shelf
The defense is maximum and that's a law
T-R-E-E spells Tree but I'm raw
See, coz I'm the hard hittin villain
The definition is clear, you're the witness of a killin
that's takin place between the hedges
And once you're on the field, your ass is dealed
Look, you might take it as a lesson
but a hitta like Tree is on a mission
Straight out da Dawg House...


(This da Dawg House, This da Dawg House)

[Rambo] Zander is his name and the boy is comin...

[Verse Three: Zander Ogletree]

...straight out da Dawg House
is a brotha to that other named Ogletree
and making blocks so the backs can run free
Dangerous lead blocker makin holes
And if u ever in my way u gettin bold
See, I don't get scared, that's the problem
I see a defensive end, I don't dodge him
But I'm smart, lay low, creep a while
And when I catch a screen pass, I smile
To me it's kinda funny, the attitude showin when u trollin
but don't know where the ball's at when I'm rollin
lookin for the one they call Z Tree
But here's a flash, you'll never seize me
Ruthless! Never seen like a shadow in the dark
except when I unload, then I attack like a bull shark
and hear the scream when you pancaked in the ball park
Give a little gust of wind and I'm jettin
But leave a memory no one'll be forgettin
So what about the punk who got popped? Poser.
You think I give a damn about you? I ain't a loser!
This is the autobiography of the Z, and if you ever mess with me
You'll get taken by a crazy otha brotha who will smother
word to the mother, sucka. Straight out da Dawg House


(This da Dawg House, This da Dawg House)

(Damn that suspension was long!)

First Trimester Report: Reality Check

After the first trimester of the season, the Dawgs sit at 4-0 with an average margin of victory of 31 points. Our offense is averaging 530 yards per game. For the first time in school history (120 years of football) the Dawgs have scored over 40 points in four consecutive games.

Our defense has played good overall but great in the second half giving up an average of 4 points per game in the second half. The defense has yielded 343 yards per game, which is not stellar. But, Alec Ogletree and Baccari Rambo have yet to touch the field and Sanders Commings and Chase Vasser missed the first two games.

Georgia started the season ranked #6 in the AP and USA Today Coaches Polls. After one week we were leapfrogged by FSU and dropped to #7. Then USC got Stanforded again and we moved up to 5 and 6. Then Oklahoma got Big Game Bobbed and we solidified #5 in both polls. Now sitting above UGA is Alabama, Oregon, LSU and Florida State.

Georgia fans have much to be excited about and the first four games have gone as good or better than expected especially considering that we have missed so many starters from the defense and since we put Isaiah Crowell on a bus to Alabama State this summer. The young running backs - Todd Gurley, Keith Marshall and Ken Malcome have played exceptionally well and the new, young offensive line is shaping up and opening holes as well as pass protecting.

Now... for the reality check...

The four teams we have beaten are a combined 5 and 10 with exactly one victory against a Division 1A (aka FBS) opponent, which was Missouri's win over Arizona State. However, Vanderbilt led both unbeaten South Carolina and unbeaten Northwestern deep into the fourth quarter before succumbing to both.

Our offensive line has played well enough and appears to be getting better each week which is a tribute to the kids and Coach Will Friend. But, there isn't much experienced depth so staying healthy up front is critical.

Our defense has allowed too many passing yards to mediocre passing attacks and has given up too many big plays to Buffalo, Missouri and FAU. Will the return of Ogletree and Rambo fix that? We will know soon enough. Tennessee's Tyler Bray likes to throw deep and has two bona fide big play receivers in Justin Hunter and Cordarrelle Patterson. The return of Rambo will allow Sanders Commings to move back to corner where he belongs. But now we are hearing that Malcolm Mitchell will play more offense going forward. That remains to be seen, but what would be a welcome addition on offense may be an unwelcome subtraction for the defense.

Special teams play has been better than last year but hasn't been superlative thus far. With the exception of Gurley's 100 yard touchdown on a kickoff return and Mitchell's 22 yard punt return in the first quarter against Vanderbilt, our return game has been uninspiring. Rhett McGowan has actually looked good averaging 21 yards on two punt returns. But, if you remove McGowan's two returns, we are only averaging 7.36 yards per return. On the flip side, we are only surrendering 7.67 yards per return, so that is a positive. And we have blocked one punt. Our kickoffs have been the best in a long time thanks to the new kickoff rules resulting in 15 touchbacks in 33 tries. On the other 18 kicks, the opponent is only averaging 19.83 yards per return. I don't have the precise statistic but I would guess that our opponents average field position after kick offs must be inside the 25 yard line. That is a huge improvement over the old Jon Fabris directional kicking challenge. I have no criticism of our kickoff returns because after Gurley showed what he was capable of in the first game, he has not had many chances with nearly half of our kick returns being handled by up backs Merritt Hall and Kyle Karempelis. Combined, we are averaging 23.92 per return, which includes Gurley's 100 yarder. I would be remiss if I didn't add that Georgia has stopped the one and only fake punt it has seen this season. Let's hope that becomes a trend.

Extra points have been an adventure. That needs to settle down.

At the end of one trimester, Georgia is wholly deserving of its #5 ranking, but it is hard to make a case that we should be ahead of any of the 4 teams in front of us. To be fair, I think Kansas State has a decent argument that they should get some top 5 votes. The others, South Carolina, Notre Dame, Stanford, West Virginia, Texas and Florida will have plenty of opportunity to make their case soon enough. As for Georgia, the upcoming slate of Tennessee, South Carolina, and Florida will make or break their stature as a Top 5 team. For those fans worried about teams ranked ahead of us, you can ignore Alabama and LSU because if we take care of our business we will have a shot at one of them in Atlanta. Oregon is a very good football team and has several testy games remaining. However, FSU has already overcome their most significant challenge of the season until they face off with their bitter rival Florida at the end of the season. Again, if we take care of our business, we may all become big Gator fans on November 24th. I held my nose as I typed that.

All of this conjecture is somewhat meaningless but I am already hearing/seeing some of our Dawg fans complaining about LSU staying above us in the rankings and fretting that if we stay undefeated we could be left out of the MNC if Oregon and FSU remain unbeaten. To all of that, I advise... enjoy each game as they come to us. We have Tennessee coming to Athens Saturday. We are 18-21-2 against the Vols all time. And we are 12-15-1 against them in my lifetime. I can assure you that I have not witnessed enough Georgia wins over Tennessee for it to get old. I savor each and every one. I am hoping and expecting to enjoy another Georgia victory this Saturday between the hedges and that is what I am worried about. After that, I will worry about South Carolina. So, here we are at 4-0, right where we wanted to be and with lots of optimism for what lies ahead. Enjoy the ride, friends. it could get bumpy at times, but the journey is probably more important than the destination. Tune back in after the World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party for the Second Trimester Report.

Go Dawgs! GATA!

Favorite Tweets - Vandy Edition

Here are a few of my favorite tweets from the Vandy weekend, somewhat in chronological order... This Tweet is set to the NWA tune "Straight Outta Compton"... Big Game Bob!!!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Vandy Was Vandy But Who Are These Dawgs?

These Dawgs looked damned serious about their business Saturday against the supposedly new look Vanderbilt Commodores. Prior to the game, I opined that we probably would not be treated to an Auburn 2011 thorough annihilation. I was expecting something more along the lines of 34-13. Those who expected Auburn 2011 Redux were spot on as the Dawgs whipped Vanderbilt 48-3 and played as close to mistake-free as we have seen since, well, Auburn 2011.

Here are my top takeaways from the game (in no particular order):

- Aaron Murray started 12 of 12 and finished 18 -24 for 250 yards and 2 touchdowns with no interceptions. This marks two weeks in a row where he started off hot as he hit his first 6 against FAU. We need this trend to continue. From what I can recall of his 6 incompletions Saturday night, one was a drop, one was a throw away, two were batted at the LOS and one was just over the outstretched arms of Rantavious Wooten who had 2 steps on his man and would have had a long TD if the ball had been thrown 18 inches shorter. My point? Murray was extremely sharp. I would like to see him avoid the balls batted down at the LOS but that also requires some OL help.

- Our running game was explosive and dominant. This was a combination of excellent run blocking and hard, determined running by Todd Gurley, Keith Marshall and Ken Malcome. I continue to be impressed with Gurley's balance. He has power and vision and a quick burst into open space but he also knows how to control his body into and out of contact to maintain his balance and either continue downfield on his feet or at worst, go down falling forward for another yard or three. His 34 yard touchdown run included 4 broken tackles with the last one being a grown-ass-man stiff arm to the turf of the Vandy safety. Of the previous UGA greats, I think he reminds me of Rodney Hampton more than the others. Oh, and I haven't seen him tap his helmet like some of our previous "feature" backs were fond of doing after a couple of carries. What do you think?

- This...

- Jarvis Jones continues to be a beast. He plays with the most desire I have seen in silver britches since Rennie Curran. The thing that astounds me about Jarvis’s play is when the ball is run to the side opposite him and how often he ends up in the pile. Often, I watch him off the LOS penetrating a few yards deep but then I see the ball going the other way so I take my eyes off Jarvis to watch the ball then a few seconds later after a gang tackle, I see Jarvis getting up from the bottom and I think, “How the hell did he get there?” It’s like he is one of those vampires in the stupid True Blood series that run so fast they are nearly invisible. But then, if you see the replay or a highlight reel with Jarvis circled, you see him recognize the play and just haul ass like his hair is on fire and take the perfect angle to get there. His motor makes the great David Pollack look like a slacker. Every HS and middle school football player could learn reams of football knowledge just by watching Jarvis GATA and never quit on a play.

- Marlon Brown's hands are like catchers mitts made of memory foam. He is sucking every ball into those strong paws like the 5 Star stud we have been waiting on. He has had consecutive monster games against Vandy, combining for 9 catches 235 yards and 3 TDs. That is 26 yards per catch. He makes for a great target opposite the deep threat of Tavarres King and the sure-handed Michael Bennett. Now, how dangerous will this group be with Malcom Mitchell getting more reps on offense... assuming that happens.

- The Grantham-Franklin Flap... is now officially a dead horse as Grantham sent his charges out there to thoroughly dismantle the Vanderbilt offense. Keeping them out of the end zone was an excellent feat even if we did catch a break when Rodgers lost the handle on the ball creating a touchback.

- I hope Coach Richt has about 10 more games this season of a "personal" nature. We seem to respond well when the games are "personal." GATA.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Dawgs Ready to Sink Anchor Down... Anchor Way Down

What the hell is Anchor Down supposed to mean? I spent 9 years in the Navy and that is a term wholly unassociated with seamanship. In fact, if the anchor is down, then the ship doesn't go anywhere. At Navy, we sang Anchors Aweigh, which means the anchor is up. That is how you sail down the field. So right off the quay, Vanderbilt starts with a Davy Jones Locker load of FAIL.

 Before the Missouri game, I thought the game had an Arkansas 2009 feel to it. And for three quarters, that was not far off the mark. But in the 4th quarter, that game morphed into Tennessee 2003, a 41-14 Dawg victory in which Georgia exploded for 21 points in a short period of time in the third quarter to put the game out of reach. Now, I am trying to figure out what kind of feel this game with Vandy has. Some want to say it will be like Auburn 2011 in which Georgia flattened Auburn 45 - 7. The apparent motivation for that total annihilation was the many cheap shots from the punk Nick Fairley in 2010. Which brings us to the cheap shots from Vanderbilt in 2011 that may be avenged in 2012. But, this Vanderbilt team is significantly better than 2011 Auburn so I don't think that is what we will see. I have a feeling this will be more like South Carolina 2003. Remember in 2002, we narrowly escaped Columbia with a 13-7 win thanks to a huge game by David Pollack. South Carolina was so unhappy and felt that we were lucky to win. They came to Athens in 2003 expecting big things. Georgia was ranked #8 and SC was ranked #25. Georgia plodded to a 17 - 0 halftime lead behind a bend-don't-break defense and workmanlike offense. The second half was more of the same as Georgia moved to 24-0 before SC found the end zone. Then Damien Gary returned the ensuing kickoff as Georgia closed it out 31-7. This is what I see in the crystal ball.

I expect Georgia's defense to play focused and to fly around and gang tackle. I know that they will give up a few plays just because we still don't have everyone back and some young guys are still learning. The key is whether the missed assignments yield touchdowns. Regardless, I don't see Vanderbilt's offense scoring more than 14 points.

Meanwhile, Aaron Murray and crew will continue spreading the wealth around from multiple formations and a relentless combination of power running, vertical passing, play-action runs as well as some bubble screens and maybe a nice Fullback 344. If/when this offense executes, it is a lethally efficient and well-balanced machine. I expect the Dawgs to methodically add scores like they did against SC in 2003... 7 or 10 in the first quarter, another 7 in the second. Then another 7 in the third and winding it up with another 10 in the fourth resulting in a 34-14 win. It will be workmanlike. Explosive at times, but more often very controlled lengthy drives. I truly hope that the offense can find a way to reach 40 points to make it 4 consecutive games with greater than 40 points. Either way, we will cruise to a comfortable win.

The Hunker Down Beer Challenge will be in full effect. I have picked up a six pack of Sweetwater IPA. I hope I will exhaust that and have to dig into some of my other, higher ABV beers.


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Kiss My Ass, Kick My Ass, Kick Your Ass: Season 3, Volume 2

Kiss My Ass - Lane Kiffin.  

Why? Why not! For being a brat... for being whiny... for being a jackass... for being promoted beyond your talent... for marrying a hottie (just kidding... that is actually pretty awesome)... for being a much less talented but equally annoying younger version of Steve Spurrier... just Kiss My Ass.

Kick My Ass - Trent Murphy.


 If you watched the end of the Stanford-USC game, you saw Stanford OLB Trent Murphy dominate the USC offensive line and blow up several plays including a sack and a tackle for a loss. Recently named to the Butkus Award Watch List, at 6-6 and 261 pounds, this is one ginger who knows how to GATA. Seeing how he bulled his way through the USC resistance like a hot knife through butter, I am pretty sure Trent Murphy would Kick My Ass.    

Kick Your Ass - James Franklin. 

Tell me you didn't see this one coming. But this is not my fight. This is Todd Grantham's deal. The well-documented flare-up at the end of the Georgia-Vanderbilt game last year was rooted in many grievances. From Grantham's perspective, it was Franklin's tacit (or explicit) approval of at least one dirty play by Center Logan Stewart with a clear intent to injure Georgia's Kwame Geathers. 
In addition, Grantham took exception to Franklin yelling at one of his players, Shawn Williams, after the game. While there was indeed plenty of fire in the immediate moments after the game, a time in which there is no doubt Todd Grantham would have kicked Franklin's ass up one side and down the other, I expect that both coaching staffs have used this for motivation for the rematch in Athens Saturday. I certainly hope it is a clean game with no cheap shots. I also hope that it is sufficient motivation for us to see our defense play like their hair is on fire for all 60 minutes. And finally, I would love to see a charity cage match between Grantham and Franklin because if that ever happened, Mr. Franklin... Todd Grantham would Kick Your Ass.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Week 3 One-Liners

Please allow myself to introduce my... one-liners about the other teams...

Alabama: The Tide look like a very good professional football team right now without any discernible weakness.

LSU: Look like a team capable of beating everyone but Bama.

Florida State: Juggernaut against the Sisters of the Poor but we find out where they stack up in the lowly ACC this Saturday against Clemson.

Notre Dame: The Domers have their best team in at least 10 years and the shiniest helmets ever seen that weren't in a Sci Fi movie.

Florida: Defense is for real and the offense is improving but what will they do with LSU in a couple of weeks?

Big Televen: Looks like Northwestern will carry the torch... which says a lot.

USC: Kiffin is a tool and apparently his team is soft.

Oregon: Speed kills, but Bama and LSU defenses kill more worser.

Oklahoma: I'm not buying.

South Carolina: Connor Shaw is playing with a "hairline" fracture in his shoulder because he is waiting for Jarvis Jones to rip his arm completely off.

Auburn: LOLburn.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Blame Bobo Week 3

I have been a Georgia fan since around 1970. Technically, I have been a fan since birth in 1966, but I will grant that I probably have no memories of being at a UGA game before 1970. Some of you have been fans for much longer. No matter how long you have been a Georgia fan, you have never seen the Dawgs score more than 40 points in 3 consecutive games until this season. In fact, the Dawgs are averaging 47 points per game. Surely Vanderbilt intends to prevent Georgia from making it 4 games in a row with more than 40 points. I think Vandy will fail in that effort, but it will take Aaron Murray being sharp again from the opening possession and our defense getting Vandy's offense off the field efficiently.

Speaking of Murray and blaming Bobo... the Senator has just posted this indicating that against FAU Aaron Murray averaged 18 yards per pass attempt - a mark that no FBS QB has attained since November 2006.

One other Blame Bobo factoid from Saturday night: Georgia set a school record with 713 yards of total offense and 624 of those yards came in the first 3 quarters before the reserves came in for mop up duty.

Tune in next week for more blamethrowing at Mike Bobo.

Best Tweets of the Weekend - Week 3

I surely missed some good tweets while watching my daughter's swim meet early Saturday afternoon and then my son's football game Saturday night. But here are a few that I favorited...

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Yummy Cupcakes: 55-20

After playing a little loose on defense in the first half and allowing 14 points and 252 yards of offense, Georgia locked it down in the second half and held FAU to 66 yards and only 3 first downs. The Dawgs were still without Ogletree and Rambo and Jarvis Jones rested his strained groin. It will be interesting to see how this defense will perform when it is at full strength.

The offense started hot and stayed hot. Georgia rolled up a school record 713 yards and most of that was before the fourth quarter began. Two turnovers killed scoring opportunities and we punted 3 times. Every other possession turned into points. It was great to see the freshmen duo of Gurley and Marshall each rush for over 100 yards on 10 carries apiece and each scoring a TD. Michael Bennett returned to his reliable self and scored a long TD while going over 100 yards on 4 catches. Maybe the best thing I saw was a long TD grab by TE Arthur Lynch who stiff armed a defender in the face for the final ten yards of the play. Artie had 3 catches for 73 yards. Go Big Artie, that was wicked awesome!!!

It was also great to see Aaron Murray connect on his first 7 pass attempts.

It appears that we escaped without any serious injuries, which makes this cupcake more delicious. But, you know what tastes even better than cupcakes, SEC main course entrees and we have a much-anticipated "personal" date with Vandy Between the Hedges next Saturday. I will have more to say about that later in the week.

Have a great Sunday Funday!

Go Dawgs. GATA!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

GEORGIA - FAU: Cupcake Party

I think the goal today is to be sharp from the opening kickoff and stay sharp so long as the starters are on the field. Then get the back ups plenty of reps for game experience. And hopefully finish the day with no serious injuries. Vegas says Georgia will win by 41 points. How much we win by is not the important matter. Being sharp is what I want to see. Specifically, here are the things I hope to see:

1. Aaron Murray being accurate from the opening possession and not overthrowing the first few throws.

2. Aaron Murray connecting on a 344 Fullback pass.

3. Richard Samuel catching the 344 Fullback pass with lots of green space in front of him.

4. Dominant downhill running from all three tailbacks.

5. Michael Bennett getting back to being sure-handed.

6. More throws to tight ends including Arthur Lynch's first reception of the year.

7. Stifling run defense.

8. Swarming defense, flying around and creating turnovers. Lots of gang tackling. No walking around.

9. Continued improvement on special teams including non-shaky extra points.


I will be at my son's Pop Warner football game from 7:00 to 9:00 an hour from home. I will have to keep up via the Twitters and watch on DVR replay. Accordingly, I will not be participating in a Hunker Down Beer Challenge. If you choose to carry out an HDBC, be careful and don't drive... this one could get ugly. If I had to predict a final, I will say 55 - 10.


Friday, September 14, 2012

Kiss My Ass, Kick My Ass, Kick Your Ass: Season 3, Volume 1

Kiss My Ass - Steve Spurrier. I have decided to lead off this and all future seasons of KMA, KMA, KYA with Steve Spurrier.

He has been featured each of the first two seasons and let's face it, there can't be any offseason in which SOS doesn't say some whiny, smart allecky shit to irritate Dawg fans. This time around, it is his incessant whining about Georgia's schedule not being as hard as his South Carolina schedule because LSU and Arkansas don't appear. Wait Coach... the same Arkansas team that lost their coach a few weeks back and who just lost to Louisiana Monroe. Yeah... I see your point. By the way, we had the pleasure of playing LSU in 2008 and 2009. Enjoy Baton Rouge Stevie. Last time we were there we won by two touchdowns. For all of your whining and snarking, which is nothing new, I would like to offer you another opportunity to KISS MY ASS (again).

Kick My Ass - Jarvis Jones.

That Jarvis Jones is an exceptionally talented football player is no surprise. But the way in which he elevated his game from mere mortal to superhuman last Saturday night is all the evidence I need to be fully assured that Jarvis would not even break a sweat if he wanted to KICK MY ASS.

Kick Your Ass - Paul Finebaum. There is an old joke that goes like this: "Is that your head or did your neck blow a bubble?" Now look at this photo:

"Hey Finebaum, that beautiful creature on your left is known as a female of the human species. Do not be afraid, while they are difficult to understand, they are generally wonderful companions.Try it if you ever have a chance." If you don't know, and you would be easily excused for not knowing, this clown has a Birmingham based, Bama-centric sports radio show that is now broadcast nationally by Sirius/XM so the entire country can discover what a bunch of morons sound like on live radio. His show is the sports radio equivalent of TV's "Toddlers and Tiaras" or "Honey Boo Boo." In other words, you get dumber every time you listen to it. Obviously, this no-talent Bama homer couldn't beat his way out of a wet paper sack, so it would be embarrassing to kick his ass. But, he has been talking shit and denigrating Coach Mark Richt steadily for the past 5 or 6 seasons. To be sure, he is a Saban sycophant, but he never misses a chance to belittle Mark Richt and his accomplishments. I suppose he is unaware that Richt has a respectable record of 3-3 against his personal idol. Pawwwwllll, because you are  such a smarmy little worm, it would actually be a lot of fun to KICK YOUR ASS.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Best Tweets of the Weekend

Best Tweets of the Weekend

I saw many good tweets on Saturday/Sunday but it did not occur to me to favorite them at the time. Next weekend, I will be sure to do that so I will be able to find them quickly for this roundup. Anyway... here are some of the comments I recall that resonated with me:

Regarding Marlon Brown:

Please feel free to point to any good ones I missed or failed to mention. Go DAWGS. GATA

Monday, September 10, 2012

10 Impressions - Mizzou Edition

10 Impressions - Mizzou Edition

In no particular order...

1. JARVIS JONES is a grown ass man. The key to his game is obviously his motor but also the fact that he gets to the ball with speed and control and is able to attack the football like Lawrence Taylor  did for so many years. He will create many more turnovers this year. His pick six (I thought the nose of the ball crossed the leading edge of the goal line) was an incredible surprise and none were more surprised than James Franklin, who whiffed on the tackle attempt.

2. I am giving JON THEUS a pass this week. I remember what it was like to play with a bad ankle taped up like a mummy. He was severely limited in his footwork - or at least his ability to move his feet as quickly as he can with a healthy ankle. This led to the first sack on Murray when his man got past him with a spin move. After that, he tried to compensate by being quick off the ball... which led to the two procedure penalties. He's a true freshman starting in his first SEC game on the road with a bad wheel. Under the circumstances, he did a passable job and he will learn from the mistakes and get better.

3. RICHARD SAMUEL is a player that is easy to love. I would give him a job any time in the future if he wants to live and work in Fernandina Beach. I already know all I need to know about his character and concept of duty. It warms my heart to see him make any plays and he made a huge one Saturday night on the fake punt when he shed two blockers and slammed the punter to the turf well short of the first down. As we all know all to well, when Georgia stops a fake punt, it is cause for celebration and Mark Richt's reaction and bear hug of Samuel after the play was beautiful.

4.  OFFENSE. We obviously struggled in the first half, but we cost ourselves 3 first downs in the early going with penalties and dropped passes. It was frustrating to watch because it really seemed that we didn't know what we really wanted to do on offense. At one point I thought we had made a commitment to the run, which seemed to be working and then we went away from it for a couple of plays and had to punt. Then with little time left in the half we went into a 2 minute drill where throwing on every down was working and got us into the end zone. The real frustrating thing was that in several instances, a seemingly out of synch play call would have worked but for a dropped pass or penalty. So I couldn't really blame Bobo. For example, when we had a seven-play drive going in the first half and faced a 2nd and 2 at the Mizzou 35 yard line. Bennett dropped what would have been an easy first down. On 3rd and 2 we ran Gurley for 5 yards but it was negated by a Bennett false start. Then on 3rd and 7 we threw to Gurley behind the line for a loss of 5 and ended up punting. Clearly the play on 2nd and 2 should have worked but for the dropped pass. But, I felt strongly that we just need to pound it there. We had their defense on skates, needed the first down and had a very good chance of getting it by pounding the ball on 2nd, 3rd or even 4th if necessary to get the 2 yards. Instead, we got a little cute and never made that first down. Look, I understand that in many cases, 2nd and short is a prime opportunity to open the playbook... but in that game in the first half, we needed to sustain a drive and force our will. This situation arose again at the end the third quarter when we trailed by 3 points. We drove down and had a first and goal from the 2 and we passed, passed, passed and finally were able to connect with Marlon Brown for the TD. Again, with 3 or 4 plays to go 2 yards, I am running Gurley or Malcome or Samuel behind the power blocking of Merritt Hall. It worked out for us that time, but we made it more difficult that it had to be... in my opinion. Still, in the end, I felt our offense found its rhythm and really started executing in the second half. So I guess my main criticism is to pound the ball when you have 2 or more plays to make 2 or less yards. That will keep me from pulling my hair out. Oh, by the way... this offense is averaging 43 points per game.

5.  JOHN JENKINS was destroying the interior line in the second half and at least twice he grabbed Franklin from behind for a minimal gain when it looked impossible for him to cover the necessary ground to make the play. That big man is deceivingly quick. If teams decide to double-team him, will they also double-team Jarvis? If so, there will be only 6 players to block our other 9. This is known as a matchup headache and I hope it gets even worse for opposing offenses when Ogletree is back.

6. HORSE COLLAR and PASS INTERFERENCE. Either the referees last night were of the "let them play" mentality or I don't understand what constitutes the requisite action to draw either of those penalties. Without question, on Gurley's longest run he was tackled by a hand grabbing his jersey in the collar in the back of his neck (i.e. horse collar) and he was jerked backwards in the motion that often can lead to injury, which was the impetus for the rule in the first place. I have no idea how the referees missed that one.

7. I have no problem with SHELDON RICHARDSON having confidence in his team and saying a lot of what he said. And, I am glad he said it because it created a fun mantra for our side. But, come on man... finish the game if you are going to talk smack. His butt was so worn out in the 4th quarter that he couldn't breath and dropped to a knee on his sideline while his defense was on the field. In the end, he was the one who looked like an old man. Still, I hope the Missouri Tigers will rebound well and go on to win a lot of football games this season.

8. We have a lot of RECEIVERS who will contribute this season. On Friday, I predicted that we would have eight different players with catches. As it turns out, there were 7 but number 8 would have been a big gainer had Murray hit Merritt Hall in the numbers on the fullback flare route (more on this in #9). Marlon Brown had a breakout game with 8 catches for 106 yards and 2 TDs. This was a tremendously welcome development. Michael Bennett had 8 catches as well but had 3 uncharacteristic drops. I am confident he will lock that down and get back to being the sure-handed receiver we have come to expect but a couple of those drops were drive-stoppers. We rediscovered the Tight End with a crucial 15 yard completion to Jay Rome in the second half. But, we have still not seen any action from our most fleet-footed receiver Justin Scott-Wesley. I was impressed with him in the Spring Game and will be looking for him to get a couple of balls this week against Florida Atlantic. His speed is eye-opening.

9. 344 FULLBACK is a play that has worked brilliantly over the years for Georgia under Coach Richt. It is a simple fullback flare route into the flats. It is deployed so infrequently and at just the right time that it almost always catches the defense ignoring the fullback who has slipped out into the flat and can usually cover 10 to 15 yards before first contact - and since it is a fullback, first contact doesn't usually mean a tackle. Naturally, Verron Haynes was the most effective fullback we have had for this play over the years and many others have run it well. But there is one mind-numbingly frustrating obstacle to executing this play and that is the giant shoulder pads worn by fullbacks and a ball thrown one foot directly over their heads, especially when the ball is thrown like a laser. These guys cannot physically get their arms over their head and bring their hands close enough together to catch a football thrown directly over their head. This has been a problem since David Greene and JT Wall. The plays calls for a ball lobbed, with touch, into the fullbacks numbers on the front side of his jersey. We have seen plenty of backside throws proving that fullbacks aren't normally the best at performing pirouettes and still getting downfield fast. Aaron Murray has missed both opportunities on this play this season. One to Samuel and one to Hall. Both balls were whistled high. If Murray can settle down and start making this throw, it will be good for at least one long first down per game and if Samuel is the recipient, it could go to the house.

10. HUNKER DOWN BEER CHALLENGE. For the first time in the three year history of the HDBC, I had to tap out when Jarvis Jones caused two TDs in about a 2 minute span. We were already up 27-20 and since we were fruitless throughout the first 24 minutes of the game, those 5 scores (thus 5 beers) came in about a 90 minute span. I had just poured my 5th Bell's Two Hearted Ale when Jarvis intercepted Franklin with 8 minutes to play. Then seconds later Jarvis struck again. I was two beers in the hole and it was after 11:00 pm. Normally, I would have fulfilled my HBDC obligations, but I was still operating on Greenwich Mean Time, having just returned from Ireland and England, so it felt like 4:00 am to me and I had to be awake and functional early Sunday morning. For what it's worth, I consumed the two obligatory beers on Sunday while watching the surf contest at Fernandina Beach with actual, real surfing waves courtesy of Tropical Storm Leslie.