Today it occurred to me that the Georgia/Florida weekend starts to get underway around noon on Thursday before the game. It doesn’t really matter if you are in St. Simmons, Fernandina, Jacksonville, or up here in Athens. At this very moment, I am sitting in my office waiting on paperwork to arrive, and as soon as it does I am going to SCRAM out of here because Georgia plays Florida on Saturday. I don’t care what the coaches say, this one is DIFFERENT! THIS ONE MATTERS MORE! No explanations needed because any real Dawg fan gets it. Sadly, this game has gone the other way too many times over the last 27 years. Wow, that is tough to swallow let alone type. Of course Georgia has won a few games over that period, but overall Florida has controlled the rivalry since 1990. But guess what? That dominance will end this Saturday around 7:30 PM eastern standard time.
If you follow this blog at all, you know that last week I wrote a post to give all us fans a “reality check” heading into this game. I stand by that post because Bulldog fans needed to hear a little negativity, and there is still a lot of football left to be played. All that being said, I am calling for a big W on Saturday. I was nervous, I was anxious, and I was worried, but that is all in the past tense. Now I am confident, I am excited, and I am ready for Saturday. I am ready because Saturday will bring about the change in culture that this team and this fan base has needed for so long. Georgia will win Saturday because they are the better team. They have better players, they have better coaches, and they will be better prepared for the game. Don’t get me wrong it will be close for about two quarters, but come the 2nd half Georgia will start to run away with the game. And afterwards there will be celebration, there will be consumption, there will be some HELL raised by us Dawg fans that greatly deserve it. In fact, if you aren’t a Dawg fan on Saturday night you best stay the hell out of my way.
I just can’t stand the Gators. They are by far the most obnoxious team and fan base in the country. Think about this for a minute. Can you name a fan base in the SEC or the country for that matter that doesn’t despise Florida? You can’t because hating the Gators is universal. Give me a Clemson fan, Seminole, Buckeye, or Bama man any day over a dang Gator fan. Granted, I have met a few nice Gator fans over the years but nice or not I still disliked them immensely.
Mark Richt is a good coach, and great guy as we all know. But at the end of the day, the man is from South Florida and that always irked me. So I wish him the best at Miami, but I am damn glad we got Kirby. Our new coach really gets it. He fully understands why we love our team, our players, and our school. He knows the history here, and he knows what it feels like to be a Bulldog through and through. And what’s best is that he knows how to get us where we want to go. It is very likely that Georgia is still going to lose a game or maybe two later this year, but they aren’t going to lose in Jacksonville this Saturday. Get excited Dawg fans because this one is going to be fun.
I am about to give all that are willing to read this post a big reality check. I think it is appropriate for us Bulldog fans to have a little bit of it before we head into next week’s GA/FL game. First of all, please let me be clear that no one is more excited about our beloved Georgia Bulldogs than myself. To this point, the season has been an absolute JOY to watch. There are so many positive things happening in the program and that is so very exciting to see. But that is not what this blog is about. This blog is meant to scare you. Besides, everyone is entitled to one good scare around Halloween right? So Here We GO!
Quit Drinking the KOOL-AID Dawg Fans– It seems that every fan and every talking head is big on Georgia right now. I know it is fun to see your team be a part of the conversation, but nothing has been accomplished yet. No titles earned, no rings won, and no bowl bids given. The schedule is just now getting hard. So calm down and quit bragging to that Tech guy, Auburn man, or dreaded Gator fan in your world. Next week is big, and besides when is the last time Florida lost three games in a row? I’m just saying.
Who Has UGA Actually Beaten? – The answer is only Notre Dame which looks like a good team right now, but that could change quickly in the coming weeks. So far, Georgia has basically played no one worth a damn in the SEC. The combined record of our SEC opponents is 11 wins to 14 losses. And only 1 of those teams has an SEC win which was over an LSU team that got beat by TROY at HOME!
We Have a Freshman QB– I love Jake Fromm. Seriously, I may actually love him (lol). But the truth of matter is that he is still just a freshman. And we are asking a lot if we think he is not going to stumble a time or two before December. Hard games are ahead, and he will face some adversity. Let’s hope he handles it well.
Even Good Teams Lose – I am trying to think of the last team to go undefeated for an entire season from the SEC. I think it was Auburn in 2010 which had to cheat to do it. Yes that’s right they did cheat and they didn’t get in trouble because the NCAA is a farce. Just look at UNC last week. North Carolina did exactly what Jim Harrick did while at Georgia, but they did it over an entire decade. And the NCAA found no violations whatsoever. It’s a total joke. A TOTAL JOKE! I hope Georgia is cheating too, because if they are not cheating they are the only ones. Do you remember that huge mess in Miami where the guy in prison decided tell on himself for paying all those players? Do you remember that? Probably not, because nothing ever came of it. Big time college athletics is basically the wild wild west. And the only authority that wants to do anything about it appears to be the FBI, and of course UGA who has self imposed more penalties on itself than the NCAA has handed out in the last 15 years.
The Boogie Man Lives in Jax Right Now– The Boogie man is real and he apparently likes Florida because Jacksonville has just been down right spooky for Dawg fans over the last 25 years. I just hope we can run him and the Gators out of Jacksonville next week.
I know this seems like a lot of negativity, but somebody has to bring us down to earth a little before it comes back to bite us in the A-S-S. Our team is good and they can be great, but greatness will be decided between now and the first week of December. So calm down, and start to worry again. Every game left is a big one. Go Dawgs!
As the great comedy writer Larry David says, “pretty…., pretty…., pretty good”, is exactly what most Georgia fans are feeling on this Tuesday before the Tennessee game.
But not this Dawg fan. In fact, I feel a great deal of anxiety for my beloved Bulldogs this week. Yes of course I had a great time Saturday watching them thoroughly handle the bizzaro bulldogs from Mississippi. You may even recall that I did predict this team to go 11 and 1, and so far I am looking much wiser than many thought only 4 weeks ago. I still believe that record should be the eventual outcome of the season, but this Saturday the game in Knoxville truly has a chance to signify a drastic change in the football culture at UGA. Most of you reading this should already understand why, but for those of you who don’t let me explain.
I was born almost three months after Georgia won its last national title in football. Since then my life as a Dawg fan has been filled with great times, great friends, and great memories. But it has also been filled with great disappointment. And these great disappointments have come right after some of the really great memories. That has sort of been the life of Georgia fans for the past 36 years or so. Don’t get me wrong, I would not change being a Georgia man for any other team or school in the entire country. I don’t want a degree from a different university, and I don’t want to live anywhere other than Athens. Long and short, I am all in when it comes to the school and the state of Georgia. I know this team is good, and I know the new coaching staff was brought here to change things for the better. But I still have reason to worry. I hate to be a “Negative Nancy” or a “Debbie Downer”, but allow me to remind you of a few big games followed by some tough losses from the ghosts of UGA’s past.
The first two games I have to lump together because I was so young. After rolling through the SEC in 1981 and 1982, Georgia lost two Sugar Bowls to two schools from Pennsylvania. 81’ to Pitt and 82’ to Penn State. Both games likely cost Georgia a national title. Keep in mind these games were played after beating Florida, Auburn, and Tech to close out the season. These games were heart breaking, but they are not examples of Georgia playing poorly.
The first big letdown game I can recall was Georgia vs. Auburn in 1997. Jim Donnan appeared to have Georgia over the hump with a 37-14 win over Florida. The joy of that victory was short lived because Dameyune Craig and the Auburn Tigers beat Georgia solidly at Sanford Stadium in the very next game.
The next one came just a year later. Georgia went on the road to beat LSU with Quincy Carter in 1998. Bulldog fans then dared to think their team would beat Tennessee the following weekend. Well the joke was on us because the Bulldogs lost 22 to 3 in Sanford, and no one called Quincy Carter “ice water” ever again.
In 2004, Georgia dismantled the defending national champs, LSU, 45 to 16. We all felt great about ourselves. Every fan was certain Georgia was on its way to the BCS. But then Tennessee came to town the very next week with an upset win. This one stung badly at the time.
Here is a list of other games in the last 15 years that hurt Georgia’s chances to have a special year: Florida 2002, Auburn 2005, Tenn. 2007, Bama 2008, Tech 2008, SCAR 2012 just to name a few. Trust me there are more.
So here is my point, this Tennessee game is the typical trap game. Just about the time that the fan base starts to feel good, the team goes out and losses one they shouldn’t. This has become a defining characteristic of Georgia Football for 20 years or more. But here is an opportunity to change that perception with a win over Tennessee this Saturday. I don’t care how they get it just as long as they win. Have you also considered that Florida is already 2 and 0 in the SEC? I know they don’t deserve to be, but regardless of a comically bad off season they are still 2 and 0. If Georgia loses this weekend, they are already behind the 8 Ball in the SEC East. So in my opinion, the season starts Saturday in Knoxville, and Florida is already a win ahead of both Tennessee and Georgia.
So I hope all you Bulldog fans out there feeling “pretty good” about your team realize that nothing has been accomplished, and there is a long ways to go. So don’t book a room in Atlanta just yet. On the other hand, I think our head coach and new staff understand this all too well, and that should help the team keep their head out of the clouds this week. All this being said, I am going to stand by my predictions for the year. Dawgs win Saturday and the culture around the program improves a little more with each coming week. Go Dawgs!
Today is only Thursday, but it already feels less crowded here in Athens except for the Chick-Fil-A on Alps road of course. I am trying to recall a game in my lifetime with as much excitement and fervor to make so many UGA fans travel as this week’s match up against Notre Dame. Sure, there have been some big games here in Athens and Atlanta over the last 15 or so years. LSU 2004, BAMA 2008 & 2012, along with some trips to the Georgia Dome come to mind. However, I think you have to go back to 2002 when Georgia returned to the Sugar Bowl as the SEC Champion. In 2002, Georgia fans were itching to get down to New Orleans to watch their Dawgs play Florida State. I was one of them of course, and I had a blast even though it wasn’t that great of game. If you recall, FSU that year was a little beat down, and an underdog to Georgia. I think Anquan Boldin had to move from receiver to quarterback for that one game. In the end, Georgia fans weren’t as excited about the match up in 2002 as they were about the trip. And I worry that too many fans feel the same way about this trip to Notre Dame.
Granted, I have never been to South Bend, but I am pretty damn sure it is not equal to New Orleans. Nevertheless, it does have appeal thanks to Notre Dame
and their football team. There is not much reason for me to go into Notre Dame’s historic program. Truth be told, I was not alive for much of their dominance. I can recall Tony Rice, Rocket Ismail, and a kickoff return against Colorado while Lou Holtz spat on the sidelines with every word he shouted. (Suffering Succotash!) To be very honest, most of what I remember of Notre Dame is Ron Powlus, Bob Davey, Tyron Willingham, and a dreadfully slow linebacker that believed he was dating a make believe girl on the internet. None of these memories are good for Notre Dame by the way. In the end, most people under 30 might be unaware of Notre Dame’s long history. Sadly, the same can be said for UGA. For many fans this is for certain a big game . But on the other hand, this is simply a fun trip for a lot of fans . And yes it should be fun. Fans can visit Chicago, see a Cub’s game, stare at Lake Michigan, eat deep dish pizza, and yes visit South Bend to watch Georgia play. I truly hope all of the Bulldogs enjoy the trip, but I also hope they know that this game means something.
I fully understand that this is NOT an SEC game, and a loss here doesn’t affect the standings in the SEC eastern division. But do you know what a win in South Bend on Saturday night would mean? It would mean a return to relevance. That’s right Dawg fans. Georgia has not been relevant since 2012. And they weren’t relevant in 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014, 2015, or 2016 either. Yikes! The truth hurts. Some of you may disagree with me on this point of view because you may define relevance differently. For me, being relevant is defeating a Top 10 team or even winning a game as the underdog. I know Georgia beat Auburn last year in Sanford, but that one doesn’t count for me. I think the last big game Georgia won away from Sanford was Florida in 2012, and even that game was on a neutral field. I could be wrong, but I think the last time Georgia had a big upset was 2006 against Auburn which was a 12 noon kick off on the plains. Now I know that Notre Dame isn’t ranked in the Top 10, but the game airs at 8pm on NBC for all the world to see. Georgia is currently the underdog, and if they can win this one then they are relevant at least for a few weeks anyway. On the other hand, if they lose they could still have a great year. But winning in South Bend at night with a freshman quarterback could make a statement for this team and coaching staff. And that’s what they were hired to do here in Athens. Winning this game could change the tune or narrative of Georgia Football from what it has been over the last 10 years. So have fun up in South Bend and be sure to keep it classy. But if you get into that stadium, scream your head off for your Bulldogs because this one is more than a vacation dawg fans. Go Dawgs!
I have been posting these articles or blogs for about two years now. Even so, I have not kept a real steady schedule or even been consistent on writing about real estate. I quickly realized that always writing about real estate could become a little boring or even redundant because good real estate topics don’t emerge every week. On the other hand, Georgia football is always a welcome discussion in our neck of the woods. Therefore, I try to write a couple of posts each year depending on available time and my current feelings about the state of the program. For example, in 2015 my feelings quickly went from good to terrible in what was ultimately Richt’s final season. For better or worse those feelings were well
documented on this blog. Nowadays, I am pretty d@&n optimistic about the “Smart Era” of Georgia football as you will see as you read through my predictions about the Bulldogs this year. So now let me put on my magic 8 Ball jacket and gaze into the crystal ball.
UGA vs App State Sept 2nd– This is the typical game that happens every year where people want to talk up an underdog that is going to beat UGA, and this year it happens to be Appalachian State. Long & short people are talking about how they upset Michigan in 2007 and almost beat Tennessee last year. Well so what! Tennessee was not a good a football team last year, and neither was Michigan in 2007. The dawgs are going to win this one by 14 to 17 points. 1-0
UGA vs Notre Dame Sept 9th– Chicago and South Bend have no idea what is coming to town in less than two weeks. I am not talking about the football team. I am talking about the Bulldog fan base. There is going to be a sea of red and black
swarming around up there. Now I could be wrong, but I bet some of those Dawg fans do a little drinking while they are in town. I am sure the fan base will keep it classy unless the Bulldogs lose badly or even worse lose a heart breaker. But that is not going to happen. This game is going to be about Georgia’s defense. I like Georgia in a close one. 2-0
UGA vs Samford Sept 16th– JUST STAY HEALTHY! Seriously, get the win and get some people some playing time. Dawgs Win! 3-0
UGA vs Miss State Sept 23rd– Miss State will be the SEC opener, and probably the first game that brings a big game crowd to Athens. Plenty of people are already pointing to this game as a hiccup for the Dawgs. Not because Miss State is that good, but because Georgia always does this once or even twice a year. But you know what? We hired Kirby to stop this trend, and I think he will get it done sooner than later. Dawgs win by 17. 4-0
UGA vs Tenn Sept 30th– Someone I know well is getting married this weekend and I will be in attendance at the wedding. I am already stressing about the wedding & reception time vs the kick off of this game. I really hate to miss watching this one. You know why? It is going to be fun. Knoxville is a hard place to play, but Tennessee does not have the talent or the coach to win this game. I hope the Volunteers enjoyed the two year run over Georgia because it is over. They will be trying to hire a new coach come December of this year. Dawgs Win! 5-0
UGA vs Vandy Oct. 7th– Boy this one sure did hurt last year. Georgia has definitely lost too many games to Vanderbilt over the last 20 years or so. But the year after a loss to Vandy has historically been good to Georgia, and this year will be no different. I do like their coach, but I have been surprised by Vanderbilt fans of late. In fact, I don’t really care for them anymore. No reason to give you details, but I will say some recent experiences are reminiscent of a Duke fan. GROSS! Dawgs win again. 6-0
UGA vs Missouri Oct. 14th– This one was a close one last year, and if you recall, it was a big moment for Jacob Eason. I think that if Mizz couldn’t beat Georgia last year in their own stadium then they won’t be able to do it to this Georgia team in Sanford. I don’t even like this one to be close. Dawgs Win! 7-0
GEORGIA vs Florida Oct. 28th– This one will always matter to both fan bases regardless of either team’s record. Florida doesn’t seem to have a quarterback yet, and they have had a ton of off field issues. I think 8 players may be suspended for the first game. Florida will be the trendy pick for this one, and all the talking heads will be calling for Georgia to lose this one in Jax. It will be close and Florida always seems to show up for this one, but I really believe Georgia pulls this one out. Probably a low scoring game. Dawgs Win! 8-0
UGA vs South Carolina Nov 4th– Historically, this is the letdown game for
Georgia right? I mean if I am correct and Georgia is undefeated after the Florida game then typically Georgia would lose. But like I said earlier, I don’t think that is going to happen this year. Georgia pulls away in the 4th quarter to win by 10 or more. 9-0
UGA vs Auburn Nov. 11th – Last year this game proved to be Kirby’s first big win as a head coach. In fact, Georgia has been dominating Auburn as of late. Sadly, this domination will come to end on the plains just before 8pm. Auburn pulls this one out and breaks our hearts. 9-1
UGA vs Kentucky Nov. 18th– Kentucky will probably be pretty good again this year. At the time, last year’s win in Lexington was actually a really good one for Georgia. However, this year the Wildcats are going to run into an angry Bulldog team in Athens. 35 to 14 Dawgs Win! 10-1
UGA vs techies Nov. 25th– No reason to even bring up last year with this game because this year is going to be so much fun. I think Tech is in for a bad season. A real bad one in fact. Granted, they will always give Georgia a fight because of the rivalry, but there sting won’t be strong enough this year. Dawgs Win 11-1
So there you have it. My prediction for Georgia’s 2017 season. Pretty optimistic right? I think Vegas has the over/under on Georgia wins at 8.5 which means I am probably a complete moron or maybe I am just a homer. In the end, Georgia’s season depends so much on an improved offensive line. If this area gets better it will really help Eason and the entire offense. With this in mind, let me rant about Eason for a little bit. It seems to me that fans are giving this guy a bad rap a little too early. He played very well at times last year for a TRUE FRESHMAN. Does anybody remember Stafford’s freshman year? If you do then you might recall it was worse than Eason’s, but I will say that Stafford showed improvement at the end of his freshman year. My point is to say, give this guy a chance to be good because with a better line he just might be great.
Moving on, it seems every year in college football there are surprise teams that win more than the experts predict. So why not Georgia? The schedule seems manageable to me, and programs in their second year of a coaching change tend to do well. Especially here at Georgia. Just look at Jim Donnan’s team in 1997 and Mark Richt’s in 2002. Two great teams both in the head coach’s second year. Furthermore, Georgia is one of only 10 teams in all of college football that have over 50% blue chip prospects on their roster. Did you know that every single national champion since the 90s has had over 50% blue chip players? If that holds true again it means only 10 teams have a chance to win it all. Now I am not saying Georgia will win it all, but I do think they will win a lot of them. Go Dawgs!
Another summer has come and gone in Athens, GA. The students are back, and even now as I sit in our office on Milledge the soon to be sorority girls are parading up and down Milledge for formal rush. This is always a fun time in Athens for many reasons. The return of students breathes new life into our town each year and as always college football is soon to follow. It has been so long since I have written a
post on anything let alone Georgia football, so please excuse my grammatical mistakes as I am sure they will be plentiful in today’s post. That being said, it seemed like a good time to write a football blog since fall practice has begun, and we are only 22 days away from the Appalachian State game.
Last season was a disappointment in many ways, but I do feel like there was some progress made as well. The 2016 season started off strong with a good win over UNC, but it quickly derailed with bad performances, an embarrassing loss to Ole Miss (cheaters), a heart breaker to Tennessee, and how can we forget Vanderbilt and Tech. In fact, without wins over Auburn and TCU the season could have been a complete failure. But was it really a failure or were our expectations a little too lofty? I was guilty of expecting a 10 win season myself. And with wins over Vanderbilt, Tech, and Tennessee which seemed reasonable to expect the 10 wins could have happened. I don’t believe that any Georgia team should ever lose to Vandy, and a loss to Tech is acceptable about once every ten years. But when I look back at what UGA had to overcome the record seems more realistic than I previously thought. Think about it for a minute. Georgia had a first year coach, a dismal offensive line, a freshman quarterback, slim receiving corps, and a weak kicking game. How does that equal a good year? So what the hell was I thinking? Obviously, like most I was blinded by red and black glasses along with my unabashed love for all things UGA. So if my expectations were unrealistic last year, what would be realistic for this football season? Why should Georgia be any better? Well, I bet I can come up with a few reasons to think so.
The Offensive Line Can’t Be Worse– Last year was bad, and I believe that wasn’t the current staff’s fault. They were undersized without much depth. I don’t want to take away from their effort at all. They played hard, and I believe they got better. And instead of criticizing Tyler Catalina, I want thank him for coming down and trying to help where help was apparently needed. I don’t think the line will be world beaters, but they will be bigger overall and one more year under Coach Pittman will help.
The Defense Has to Be Even Better– Last year the defense was a bright spot on the team, and I think this year that side of the ball has a chance to be dominant. Coach Smart and Mel Tucker have already made their mark on the program in this area. I think the future is bright for Georgia on the defensive side of the ball.
Improvements on Offense – I really do believe we will see better offensive production for many reasons. Eason will be improved, but how much only time
will tell. At least he got a hair cut. The receiver corps seems to be deeper and may include freshman talent. Isaac Nauta is probably the best tight end in the SEC already, and the running backs could be as well. Sure we will miss McKenzie’s big plays, but offenses tend to take big strides in year two of a regime change. Look at UGA in 1997, 2002, and even the Falcon’s success last year.
The Kicking Game– This one remains a bit of a mystery. But the coaching staff has made strong efforts to improve in this area. The kicking competition will continue with fresh young talent to add into the fold. Kirby even added a new kickoff return specialist from California with the 85th scholarship. It is apparent that special teams are important to this coaching staff.
The Schedule is Manageable– Thankfully for Georgia, the SEC east is not exactly a murderer’s row. There are no national championship teams on the schedule or at least we don’t think so. Even a pessimists could take a look at the schedule and declare, “it’s possible for Georgia to beat any of the teams on their schedule.” The issue recently is that Georgia never does it. Regardless, the schedule could help this team significantly in year two.
In closing, maybe last year’s expectations are better suited for this year’s team. I am not ready to pick a record or the specific games, but I have to be honest. I feel pretty damn optimistic about 2017. Then again I guess I always do. GO DAWGS!
The time has come yet again for all good Bulldogs to head south for the annual “Cocktail Party”. That’s right! It is still the “World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party”, and not the “River City Showdown” which is just an awful attempt to rebrand the game. Long and short, here comes Halloween and here comes the Georgia/Florida game. Anyone who reads this may not like the title to this post which assumes Georgia fans have a fear of Jacksonville. In fact, it could not be further from the truth. For example, year after year thousands of Dawg fans flock to the area to attend the game or even just to be close to the party at one of the nearby beach destinations. No one is scared of Jacksonville, but you have to admit it has been a pretty spooky place for Georgia over the last 25 years or so.
Recently, I placed a 13 foot “Stay Puft” marshmallow man in the front yard to give my kids and the neighborhood a laugh and a smile. However, my good intentions back fired because my three year old son, Tullis, is now having nightmares about the marshmallow man coming to life and wreaking havoc up and down our street. This of course sounds funny to some degree, but I can relate. When I was a child around his age, I had a recurring nightmare about Lurch from the “Addams Family” TV show. You remember Lurch don’t you? Regardless, in my dreams Lurch would rise from behind the couch in our formal living room (a room in which no one ever lived) to come and get me. I would cry and cry but Mom and Dad never seemed to come. Often times I would wake up just before a plodding Lurch could grab me. Sounds silly I know, but at 3 or 4 it was scary stuff. Obviously, I out grew my fear of Lurch, and moved on to much scarier monsters like Michael Myers or Freddy Krueger. I can only assume Tullis will do the same with his fear of ole “Stay Puft”. And there is my point folks. It is time for this fear, bad luck, bad mojo, or whatever you want to call in Jacksonville to pass. We have to flip switch here, grow up, and move past all the bad vibes of the last 25 years. This is what we hired Kirby to do, and I still believe he will help us do it. All that being said, it won’t be easy, but I think we got a chance to change it this Saturday. And here is what has to happen on the field to get it done.
Special Teams– Georgia absolutely cannot afford to have any more awful special team play. In fact, it will need to be pretty damn good. No missed kicks, no fumbles, no stepping out of bounds, no busted coverages, and no shanked punts. It is time to get this phase handled period! If this poor special team play continues for Georgia they will not win.
Defense– Florida has had its struggles with offense as well. They have not really been effective all year. Therefore, Georgia’s defense has a chance to keep the score low on Saturday. I mean below 17 points low. They also need to create a few turnovers to help the offense.
Find Some Offense– Florida’s defense is legit. They will be the best that Georgia’s has played all year. Their defensive backs are fantastic, and it is a bad match up for Georgia. With a freshman quarterback in Jacob Eason, the Dawgs won’t win many of the match ups against their defense. They have to have something new or some new fire to get points on the board.
Coaching – Saturday needs to be a day that our staff outshines the Gator staff. We need to be more prepared and bring something we haven’t seen. We need good time management, and unpredictable play calling. I know these guys have it in them, but I am waiting to see it happen.
So there it is folks, a path to victory and call to get past the “heebie jeebies” in Jacksonville. It is not an easy one, but it is doable. And besides, the best upsets come when no one expects them. So have a Happy Halloween, but be careful down there if you go to game because some of their fans are a little scary. Just check out these two ladies.
I am not going to rehash the events of last Saturday. We all know what happened, and it was a real tough pill to swallow. It was just one of those games that someone had to lose, and it was our day to lose. Sunday was awful for me, and I am sure it was hard for most Georgia fans. I couldn’t even watch one college football highlight, and Saturday night I ignored the Clemson game totally. It was all I could do to listen to the Bulldawg brunch Sunday morning. Thankfully, the Ryder cup was on TV to offer a wonderful distraction. But today is a new day, and I am over it. There is a lot to still be excited about this season, and I want to make sure our fans understand this to be true. Please allow me to expound on the positives of Saturday and Georgia’s outlook moving forward.
The Team Showed Resilience– This team lost a bad one in Oxford two weeks ago. They were obviously able to put it behind them and focus on the future. They came out, and played a good game with drastic improvements in many areas
Jacob Eason Keeps Growing– Yes he threw an interception, and he fumbled in the end zone. But quarterbacks throw interceptions especially freshman quarterbacks. But you know what he can do? He can make a big throw when everything is on the line. I am really excited to keep watching him.
The Running Game Showed Up – I love Nick Chubb of course, but Sony Michel is a hell of a good football player. We need to make sure he gets the ball as much as possible. Maybe even put him in the slot as receiver from time to time.
The Future is Bright at Running Back – We have the running backs. All we need to do is improve some on the line, and things we will be great in the Smart Era
Tennessee is Not Great – They are currently the best team in the East, but they just aren’t that great. Regardless, several Tenn. fans have already acted arrogant to me this year. I find it funny because while they should be happy to be undefeated they have no reason to be so confident. I hope they keep Butch Jones awhile, and beating Georgia & Florida this year might ensure his job in Knoxville for few more years. Tennessee better soak it in this week because they are about to drop two SEC games in a row. I would love to see Tennessee go to SEC Championship with two losses because they will likely get a third loss in Atlanta. Besides once Dobbs departs they will be the third best team in the SEC East which would should be next year.
Lastly, I want all our fans to realize that Georgia can still have a fantastic year. No I don’t expect any championships, but I never did. And you shouldn’t have either. 10 Wins would be fantastic for a new staff with this team. It all starts this Saturday in Columbia, SC. If the Dawgs pull this one out Saturday night you better look out because they just might win out. Seriously, they could end up favored in every game moving forward. Not to bring up old stuff, but I predicted this to happen in my preseason prognostication blog (link included). Georgia doesn’t have any world beaters left on the schedule. South Carolina, Vandy, Kentucky, Auburn, GA Tech, and of course the loathsome Florida Gators. I don’t know about you, but I don’t think any of these teams are great. Not one damn team, and Georgia can beat every single one of them. Will they be hard games? Yes, of course! But they are winnable. And if Georgia can pull it off it would be a great year. It could even lead to a great bowl game. Especially, if they don’t have to go to the Georgia Dome and get beat by an SEC West team. We can let the “Hail Mary Heroes” of last Saturday enjoy themselves this year, and I sure hope they enjoy their trip to Tampa for the Outback Bowl. So keep your heads up Bulldog Fans, and try to remember the old saying, “No Pain, No Gain”. Go Dawgs!
Yes, you read the title correctly. I don’t know if the Dawgs can win this Saturday. It pains me to say this for numerous reasons. First of all, I am unabashed Georgia fan that will pull for Georgia no matter what. Second, I hate admitting that Ole Miss’s roster appears to have more talent. Third, I am not positive that Ole Miss’s best players were recruited honestly. Lastly, there are a surprising number of Ole Miss people running around Athens, GA. That’s right! Athens is full of Ole Miss fans. Even my oldest son, Walker, wears Ole Miss T-shirts, and claims that Ole Miss is his 2nd favorite team. Honestly, it drives me absolutely crazy. I guess we will see how much he really likes Ole Miss if they beat his beloved Dawgs this weekend. If that happens, I bet he doesn’t handle it too well. For example, I claimed to be a Yankees growing up, and then they beat the Braves in the 1996 World Series, and I have hated the Yankees ever since.
So why does Athens have so many Ole Miss Fans? Well I think there are several reasons. The obvious reason is that some people in town went to Ole Miss. I think Oxford is an attractive place for a lot of people that grew up in Athens. It offers a great college experience, and they have never really been a rival to Georgia. So you can grow up in Athens, and attend Mississippi without feeling guilty. Additionally, Ole Miss has been easier to pull for over the years when compared to Alabama, Auburn, and LSU. In the end, one of the biggest reasons may be that it is so hard to get in UGA these days. Therefore, we are seeing more and more Georgia folks go out of state to other SEC schools. All Ole Miss fans aside, I have been thinking about the game all week, and I am really glad it is not my job to game plan this one for Georgia. I think Kirby has his hands full this week, but I have now decided there is hope and a chance for Georgia to pull this off. And here’s how it can happen:
11 AM Local Kick– Early kick offs almost always favor the visiting team. It is just hard to get motivated for a big game so early. Most of Georgia’s upsets in the last 20 years were early kick offs. For example, Tennessee in 2001 and Auburn in 2007.
Turnovers– Turnovers are always key, and with Ole Miss’s love for RPOs (Run Pass Option) you just know Chad Kelly is bound to throw a couple.
Sony Michel– I am convinced that we will see Michel have a big game. Likely catching some passes more than running the ball. Someone has to step up and help McKenzie in the passing game. Michel could be another good option out of the back field. Especially, with against an aggressive defense.
Fed Up Offensive Line – These boys have been called out and told that they aren’t playing well. It is just a matter time before they get mad and have a good game. Tomorrow would be an ideal time for this to take place.
Georgia Plays 4 Quarters– If Georgia can keep it close they have a shot. With only three games played they have shown they are fighters. They have come back in every game so far, and that is good to see. I think Georgia has got a shot if they can keep it a two score game heading into the 4th.
So there it is folks. My optimistic outlook on a game I predicted Georgia would lose. But they play the games for a reason and that’s because the outcome is never certain. So pull the Dawgs through wherever you are this weekend. Go Dawgs! GATA
If you follow this blog at all, you probably know that I started writing these football posts last year. It is fun to do, and as long as I can find the time I will write at least one a week. Hopefully, someone out there is reading. I will of course continue to post real estate topics, but the football posts are just more fun. Having said that, let’s get to it. It is usually a given that the opening week of college football will be fun, but this year it was full of great games. Granted, it started off pretty sloppy on Thursday with the Tennessee and South Carolina games. But those went down to the wire, and while they were sloppy they were still fun. Then came Saturday which was simply stupendous. Of course, I was primarily focused on Georgia’s game against North Carolina. Regardless, the day was filled with great match ups. So let’s take a look back at the Georgia game, and then dissect some of the typical overreactions that occur during week one.
Georgia vs UNC– Well that sure was fun. The “Smart Era” is officially under way, and I couldn’t be happier. There were plenty of things in the game that I could harp on. For example, special teams, offensive line, and the absence of a sack on the Tarheel QB. But those are nowhere near as important as the positives. First of all, let me get the “I Told You So” out of the way. I said it two weeks ago, and then restated it later that Nick Chubb would go for 150 + yards with 2 scores, Lambert would start, and that Eason would come in and play meaningful minutes. I even predicted the score to be 34 to 31 which was wrong but close. Ok, ok, enough bragging. I am so very happy for Nick Chubb. He played very well, and deserves to have a great year. I just hope they improve in the passing game to help alleviate his load over the season. Jim Chaney is the new offensive coordinator, and I was impressed that he found ways to get Isaiah McKenzie more involved, and I think he handled Eason’s time in the game well. The defense did an excellent job too, and Georgia played a lot of guys on both sides of the ball. Most importantly, Georgia did not fold when they went down by 10 points. They played hard the whole game, and it was the other team that shot themselves in the foot…not Georgia. That was refreshing to see. I hate to say it, but I am not sure that the old coaching staff would have won the game. In the end, it was a great win for the new staff, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. This team has a lot to improve on, and they are bound to lose some football games.
Tennessee Overrated? – Whew! These boys dodged a big bullet last week against Appalachian State. However, let’s not overreact. App. State is a good football team, and it is just week one. Tennessee was picked to win the SEC East which is almost a curse these days. I still think they will be fine, but I do see three SEC losses in the future. Butch Jones needs to add a few more of those so call “bricks” this year, but I am not sure that is going to happen.
Alabama& The Lane Kiffin Hashtag – Bama dominated USC last Saturday. It was an absolute boat race. But why do people seem so surprised? Did I miss something about USC? Are they good again? Because no one told me. So here is another example of an overreaction. Everybody is convinced that Bama is unbeatable. Well, they are good, but they are going to lose to someone because they always do. In other news, Lane Kiffin decided not to take the high road with the win over his old team. Whipping their A-S-S wasn’t enough. You may recall that Kiffin was fired at the airport in the middle of the night by USC. Obviously, he isn’t over it. Here is his hashtag on Twitter after the game.
Post-game w the game ball!!! #3:14AM-LAX(pic on right)
Texas Football is Back? – Texas opened up with Notre Dame, and pulled off a great win. They have a new freshman quarterback that looked good, and they also changed it up with a running quarterback. Charlie Strong’s job may be more secure than we think. On the other hand, maybe it is just week one, and there is a lot of football left to be played. Besides, the best team in Texas might be Houston, and not TCU, Baylor, A &M, or Texas. Regardless, college football in the state of Texas is better than it has been as a whole in a long, long time.
The SEC is Now Terrible? – Surely you jest? Well like it or not, the SEC had a pretty bad opening weekend. In fact, one might say it was cartoonish or even comical. For starters, Tennessee looked bad against App. State. South Carolina and Vanderbilt made us endure an epic pillow fight. And on Saturday, Miss State lost to South Alabama. But that isn’t even the tip of the iceberg. Florida struggled often against UMass, LSU lost to Wisconsin, Kentucky lost to Southern Miss, Arkansas barely pulled out a victory, and Missouri was embarrassed. The only bright spots all week were Alabama, Georgia, and Texas A & M. And now the rest of the country is salivating over the downfall of the SEC. I say let them salivate, and let them believe the SEC is down. First of all, several of these teams aren’t supposed to be good. Let’s be honest with ourselves, and admit that Vandy, Kentucky, Missouri, South Carolina, Miss State, Ole Miss, and Arkansas aren’t exactly perineal powers. Sure, these teams have had some good years, and a couple of them have been good recently. But when people think of the SEC conference, they think of Alabama, Florida, Tennessee, Auburn, LSU, and Georgia. Granted, Ole Miss is good right now, but the NCAA is swarming in Oxford so their days are likely numbered. It is not realistic to think all the teams in the SEC will win. There just isn’t enough talent to go around. For example, if Tennessee gets better than another team has to get worse. If Texas A & M becomes a power than another team in the SEC west is losing ground. Mark Richt is coaching in Miami now because while he was at Georgia all the teams around him were improving and in many cases with recruits from the state of Georgia. Long and short, the SEC isn’t as bad as it looked, but don’t expect to see Seven 10 win teams either.