Georgia Football: 2015 Predictions & Prognostications

The days are getting shorter and the heat is showing some signs of fading. Therefore, the time has come to make bold predictions because college football will kickoff this week.  I like to do this every year just for fun, and recently with Georgia’s mediocrity it has been somewhat easy to predict their overall record but hard to pick the actual losses.  This year is unique because fans are clueless at quarterback and that doesn’t help when trying to predict outcomes.  Usually, I feel like Georgia is just about a given to go 9-3 with a bowl game.  I have thought about it for a while, and I almost went back to my rinse and repeat 9-3 prediction. But something is making me feel a little optimistic. 2015-uga-football-schedule In the end, there are a lot of teams in the SEC that are in the same situation at quarterback and that helps.  I also think there are a lot of overrated teams.  For example, the state of Mississippi should return to planet earth this year and Auburn is probably going to lose 3 games.  On the other hand, LSU may be resurgent along with Tennessee.  Arkansas will be Arkansas which is good but never great.  Florida will be getting their ducks in a row and Spurrier is going to be dangerous for any team contending in the SEC.   But Georgia is my team so here are my thoughts on Georgia’s season.

UGA vs LA Monroe Sept 5th– This should be an automatic win of course but it will be intriguing to watch because of the QB competition and Georgia’s new offensive coordinator.  I think Lambert and Ramsey will rotate a lot in this game and we may even see Bauta a little bit.  It would also be nice to see some receivers emerge.  Georgia Wins (1-0)

UGA vs Vanderbilt Sept 12th– Always a tough place to play for Georgia, but I think it will be different this year.  The Vanderbilt game is usually sandwiched between bigger opponents and this year it is not.  It represents the 1st SEC win and Georgia may still be looking for a true starter.   Vanderbilt’s new coach just doesn’t seem to have the same mojo as James Franklin.  UGA wins by three scores in Nashville (2-0).

UGA vs South Carolina Sept. 19thSpurrierSouth Carolina has won 4 out of the last 5, but one could also say that Georgia has won 8 of the last 13.  As Jeb says, “figures lie and liars figure.” Don’t get me wrong because this game scares the s#@t out of me.  They have a new defensive coordinator and a new quarterback.  That could be good or bad.  None of that will matter if UGA doesn’t have a definitive starting quarterback by the end of the Vanderbilt game.  Should be a classic but I like UGA at home and at night.  If I were coaching I would bust out the black jerseys every time they kickoff in Sanford after 5pm.  Dawgs win a good one.  (3-0)

UGA vs Southern University Sept. 26thNo reason to elaborate here.  Should be a great game to take little ones to see.  Dawgs Win (4-0)

UGA vs Alabama Oct. 3rdWell this is the game that people just won’t shut up about.  Honestly, I would take a loss to Alabama if I could ensure UGA would go undefeated in the east.  This one will be hyped up and the first real test for Alabama in 2015.  I feel like I need to go with my gut here, and my gut tells me Georgia wins.  Georgia has a few let down games every year but they also have a few games where they show up, and they are going to show for this one.  I think the coaching staff changes will benefit UGA in this game.  Dawgs win and there will be a record number of people arrested in downtown Athens over the weekend. (5-0)

UGA vs Tennessee Oct 10thWell here it is the first loss.  Just when Georgia starts to feel good about themselves they will get beat up in Knoxville.  May not be close either.  Tennessee is better but not the better team.  They will just get Georgia at the right time and at home.  Traditional let down game that UGA fans have seen many times in the tradition of Auburn 1997 and Tennessee 2004.  This one is going to sting.  Only way I see Georgia winning this game is if they were to lose two games prior and have their back against the wall.  (5-1)

UGA vs Missouri Oct. 17th– Scary game at home for Georgia.  This will be the Dawg’s last game before a much needed off weekend.  It appears Mizz fans want to be rivals with Georgia, and from articles I have read their fan base seems to have respect for Georgia’s program and overall way of doing things.  Let’s face it, Mizz fans are likely disgusted by some of the fans they meet in the SEC.  Georgia has some bad fans, but when you compare them to other fans in the SEC Georgia fans might have just a little bit more class.  But you are supposed to hate your rival in the SEC not respect them.  Good game here and Missouri could win but if UGA loses in Knoxville they will likely get it done against Missouri.  (6-1)

Off Weekend Oct. 24th I will personally win on this weekend.  No tailgate to organize, and I may even play a little golf.  But the best part is that Georgia won’t lose a game.

UGA vs Florida Oct. 31st– There are a lot of unknowns when looking at Florida this year.  I think they will have a decent season but probably end up around 8-4.  The best thing going for the Georgia coaching staff is the film they have from last year’s debacle.  Jeremy Pruitt is going to have a fit when he looks back over the off week.  As usual, Georgia keeps it close but in the end Georgia wins by a score.  (7-1)

UGA vs Kentucky Nov. 7thReally looking forward to the weather for this game.  The leaves will be colorful and it will be cool or even cold.  Really love Saturdays in Athens this time of year.  Just don’t see Georgia losing this one unless they get into injury trouble.  Georgia wins (8-1)

UGA vs Auburn Nov. 14th– Yet another match up on the plains.  By this time Georgia will be back in the Top 10 and in control of the east.  Tennessee or Missouri will have 2 losses so all Georgia will need is a win here to make it to the dome.  WELL S%#T!  Georgia loses this one.  Georgia will lose two games and one could easily see Georgia losing to Alabama, Tennessee, or Auburn.  But this is the way I think it will play out.  Let’s just hope that Tennessee has more than 2 loses because they would hold the tie breaker over UGA in this scenario.  (8-2)

UGA vs Georgia Southern Nov. 21st– Why does Georgia play Georgia Southern?  Georgia has nothing to gain but everything to lose.  The only argument for playing Georgia Southern is as preparation for GA Tech.   “Closer than the experts think”, as Corso likes to say.  Last home tailgate of the year which is always a fun one.  Dawgs win (9-2).

UGA vs GA Tech Nov. 28thNerdsLast year’s game was AWFUL!  However, Mark Richt doesn’t lose to Tech very often and last year was more of a Georgia loss than a Tech win.  So let me make a few predictions about this year’s game at Billy Grant.

  • There will be way more red & black in the stadium than Tech’s piss yellow
  • It will be the only sell out at Billy Grant all year.
  • TECH’s A-S-S will be whipped after 4 quarters of football.
  • Georgia Wins (10-2) 

Not sure if 10 and 2 gets Georgia to the dome or not.  But it should give them a chance.  However, if UGA doesn’t at least get back to the SEC championship the locals are going to get restless.  At least I will.  At the end of the day, it is next to impossible to predict how things are going to hash out over the season.  I have to admit this is a pretty optimistic prediction.  Last year I predicted 10-2 as well because I just didn’t see UGA losing to Tech, and without a stupid pooch kick I may have been correct.   Right or wrong, close or not, it is a lot of fun to talk about.  Go Dawgs!

 

Georgia Football: Who is Going to Play Quarterback?

I have started to get really excited about the football season, and today we are only 12 days away from kickoff in Sanford stadium.  It is always fun to take the number of days from kickoff and match it up with a past or current UGA player.  For most Georgia fans you cannot think of the number “12” at Georgia without thinking of John Lastinger.  In case you didn’t know, John Lastinger, played quarterback right after Buck Belue.  Georgia had some great teams and big wins in the 80s but the 1984 Cotton Bowl really stands out for me.   Texas was ranked #1 and Georgia was a really good team but no one thought they would go into Texas and upset the Longhorns without Herschel Walker.

College Football: Cotton Bowl: University of Georgia QB John Lastinger (12) in action during winning touchdown drive vs University of Texas. Georgia defeated Texas 10-9. Dallas, TX 1/2/1984 CREDIT: John Iacono (Photo by John Iacono/Sports Illustrated/Getty Images) (Set Number: X29480 TK1 )
Cotton Bowl: University of Georgia QB John Lastinger

Well thanks to great defense and a muffed punt Georgia did just that.  With little time on the clock John Lastinger ran the ball in the end zone to give Georgia the lead.  It may be the best end to a career that any Georgia player has ever experienced.  And therefore it will always be 10 to 9 in Texas for UGA fans.  Alright enough about the past, we are 12 days away and there doesn’t seem to be a clear choice as the starting quarterback.  Is this good or bad?

During the Mark Richt era Georgia fans have been pretty spoiled when it comes to quarterbacks.  The era started with David Greene who was followed by DJ Shockley.  Afterwards fans got to see Matt Stafford and Aaron Murray both hold down the position for almost 8 years combined.   So for the first time in a long while Georgia has some uncertainty at quarterback.  Brice Ramsey, Faton Bauta, and Greyson Lambert are all competing right now to win the job.  Ramsey and Bauta have been in the program for a while and deserve a shot of course but the arrival of Lambert sort of tells me the job must be wide open.  Please understand that I do not go to practice and my job is not to report on UGA football.  So anything I am saying here is only speculation and a personal opinion.  I have no sources and no one on the inside giving me information.  But I think Georgia is going to start the year with a two quarterback rotation.  Mark Richt has done this before with David Greene and DJ Shockley in 2002.  I wasn’t a real big fan of it then for many reasons, and I still remember the interception that DJ Shockley threw in GA/FL game that year.  Most fans remember Terrance Edwards dropping the ball but I remember that interception as the game changer.  Despite the quarterback rotation, Georgia had a special year in 2002 but I wonder how special it could have been if UGA was undefeated.  Shockley is one of my favorite players, but I just feel that David Greene was the leader of the team in 2002 and he should have played every snap.  The same can be said for Shockley in 2005.  Maybe I am wrong but I think Ramsey and Lambert are going to share playing time when the season starts.  Competition is always good and the coaches know better than me who needs to be on the field. But a team needs the quarterback to be a leader and the quarterback needs to have confidence.  I just think it is hard to have both things happen if you rotate two quarterbacks.

Have you ever noticed that some fans seem to always think the best quarterback is the back up?  I sure have noticed it and I think those people are idiots.  I have been hearing fans call for the back up since the 80s.  The end of the Dooley era and Ray Goff’s early days were wrought with QB controversy and the results speak for themselves.  Hopefully, I am wrong and there will be a clear #1 quarterback in 12 days that will become a leader.  At the end of the day, Mark Richt knows what he is doing when it comes to coaching quarterbacks.  But Georgia better have the position figured out by the time South Carolina comes to Athens or it could be a long night.  The last thing I want to hear Saturday night against South Carolina are Georgia fans calling for another guy to come in and play quarterback.  I do not know who the quarterback will be but he will have my full support and I will pull hard for him even when the chips are down.  I just wish other fans would do the same.

Georgia Football Pre-Season Rant #1

This past Saturday I cleaned out my basement to get rid of clutter and make room for some tailgate equipment.  My wife wanted to get the kids out of the house so she took them along with some cousins to get a photo with “Uga” at picture day.  IMG_6334I think our youngest, Giles, didn’t enjoy waiting in line just to meet a dog(pictured on the right). He is only 15 months old so he gets a pass for now but dislike of Georgia’s beloved mascot will not be tolerated in the future.  Basically, this weekend put me in the mood to talk about Georgia football.

Like most fans I am starting to get excited about the upcoming season.  I have been a Georgia fan my whole life but I was too young to remember the glory days of the early 80s.  Throughout the 90s, I suffered as a Bulldawg growing up in Valdosta where Gator and Seminoles fans were prevalent.  The 90s were not a good decade for Georgia football and that made it hard to be a fan in South Georgia where many kids were jumping on a Florida or FSU band wagon.  To this day I have a strong distain for the entire state of Florida and I only travel there if it is absolutely necessary.  Subsequently, 2002 was the best season I have experienced as a Georgia fan and it may be a major reason why I am still a Mark Richt supporter.  As I stated earlier, I am excited about this season but one thing is starting to bother to me about the pre-season hype.   It seems to me that most fans are focusing too much on the Alabama game.  For example, I have heard fans and even tv/radio personalities talking about how important the Alabama game is and in reality it is just not true.  Of course, it is fun to have Alabama come to Athens because these two teams don’t get to play very often which creates excitement and hype.  Nevertheless, the Alabama game is not the biggest or most important game on UGA’s schedule.  It may be the most attended or the most anticipated but it is far from the most important.

Georgia plays in the SEC East and they have to win the East in order to play in Atlanta and ultimately win the SEC championship.  Georgia has failed to make it to Atlanta since 2012 because they haven’t played well in their division.  Over the last two years losses to South Carolina, Vanderbilt, Florida, and Missouri have kept UGA out of Atlanta.  These losses are prime examples of Georgia’s reputation for blowing one or two games a year by just not showing up or playing poorly.  Every year there seems to be an inexplicable loss usually to an SEC East opponent.  For fans this has been beyond frustrating and it absolutely has to stop if UGA is ever going to win a championship.  What is even more frustrating is Georgia’s inability to take advantage of the recent decline at Florida and Tennessee.  As a result, here are Georgia’s most important games this season (in my opinion):  South Carolina, Tennessee, Florida, and Missouri.  If Georgia losses one of these games I can just about guarantee you they will not be in Atlanta come December.  Of course, I want Georgia to beat Alabama.  I would also like them to beat Auburn and Georgia Tech but if UGA loses to one of these opponents they could still likely make it to Atlanta.  In fact, Georgia could even have a rematch against an Auburn or Alabama if they earn a trip to the championship game.  In general, Georgia has to start winning games they are supposed to win and that starts with taking care of business against SEC East opponents.

Ideally, UGA will win every game this year and 2015 will be a special memory for Georgia fans.  I sure hope that happens but it is just not very likely.  So if I could ensure that Georgia would lose only one game this year then I would pick the Alabama game to lose.  At least Georgia could possibly avenge a loss in the dome.  Regardless, I do not want to live through another year with losses to South Carolina, Florida, and GA Tech.  So I urge all UGA fans not to overlook a good South Carolina team when they come into Athens next month.  It just might be the most important game of year for Georgia.