Archive for August, 2012

TGT Locks

Normally when a website gives locks, they say it is for entertainment purposes only.  Forget that, these picks will make you money!*


Oklahoma -30 (I busted last night with South Carolina and Washington State)

BONUS UNOFFICIAL PICK:  Northwest Whitfield at Pepperell (-3): My alma mater PHS opens up with a tough game out of region and out of classifaction.  Though the RN-T likes the Dragons by 3, NW Whitfield will beat the Dragons.


Tennessee -3.5

Ohio +6.5 (got BYU right last night)


Oregon -37

Bama -14

Texas -31.5


Cal -11

Boston College +2.5 (got Vandy  right last night)

*but really, we can’t be held responsible if your bookie breaks your leg or makes you wear concrete shoes before you swim with the fishes.


Tribute to Erk Russell

It has been nearly 6 years since Erk Russell passed away.  Georgia’s had some pretty stellar defenses since Erk left to build Georgia Southern’s football program.  The Van Gorder years were good, and now Grantham has the defense playing with the same ferocity that Coach Russell’s units played with. 

The key to UGA being successful rests on the defense. 

Here is a YouTube tribute to Erk, however the best tribute to Erk would be for the defense to play up to the standard he set.


Looks Like I was Wrong, but I’ll Take It

Monday I did some bold SEC Predictions.  The last couple of years I was pretty accurate, but this year I made a big stretch and said that Russ wouldn’t end the season as the UGA mascot and new Uga will be named.

The news coming out of Athens today is that Russ will FINALLY be named Uga IX.   So while a new Uga will be named, Russ will in fact end the season as the full-time mascot.

And it couldn’t happen to a better dog.  A damn good dog.


Excuse Me For A Moment

We normally don’t get into politics here, but something last night really irked me.  If you don’t want to read this, just ignore it. 

Full disclosure:  I am going to vote for Mitt Romney in November.  I voted for John McCain in 2008. 

I have watched a good bit of the GOP Convention.  Something that many of the speakers allude that if Obama is re-elected, America cannot survive another 4 years of  this administration.

Now, do I think Preisdent Obama should be in office for another term?  No.  Will I vote against him in November?  Yes.

But let’s have a little perspective here.  Our great nation survived a Civil War, within 3o years surived two World Wars and a Great Depression, and an awful terrorist attack that killed thousands.  I could go on.

The United States is not going to crumble beyond any repair just becuase the Executive Branch is weak for another 4 years.  That is absurd!

Stick the to his (lack of) record and the facts; don’t restort to scare tactics that are menat to sway the weak minded.


Setting Up For History To Repeat Itself??

 Let’s go back and review a few things.

Remember a season where:  Georgia’s quarterback threw an increased rate of interception and saw its running game disappear at times and its offensive line allowed the quarterback to be continuously sacked; Georgia didn’t beat a team of any significance and lost to the only good teams it played; Georgia relied heavily on its defense and its big time play makers on that side of the ball; Georgia won the SEC East and got hammered by LSU in the SEC Championship game? 

Remember when after this aforementioned season, its star freshman running back that emerged wouldn’t be available for the upcoming season?  Also, do you remember when two freshmen running backs were asked to carry the load, and when the defense saw its stars return to play on one of the most formidable defensive units in UGA history?

What two seasons am I talking about?

If you think I am talking about the 2011 and 2012 seasons, well you would be partially correct.  But full credit would go to those who answered 2003 and 2004. 

I watched the highlights of the 2004 LSU game night before last (a couple of observations about that game:  1. Georgia opened up a can of whoop ass 2.  Why can’t we dominate a team like that anymore? 3. Larry Munson was being pessimistic despite Georgia being up 31-10 in the third quarter). 

Something stuck out to me watching that game.  Danny Ware and Thomas Brown provided a good 1-2 punch that season and both were freshmen.  Kregg Lumpkin tore his ACL during fall camp, and was never quite the same afterwards.  But Georgia continued to run the ball effectively with the two freshmen and was able to withstand the crushing blow of being without the #2 ranked runningback out of HS. 

Also, that defense was sick.  Thomas Davis.  Odell Thurman.  David Pollack.  I could continue.  Demario Minter.  Greg Blue.  The players on that defense were elite, hard hitting all-time great Georgia players.

I have said many times that the 2003 and 2011 seasons eerily mirrored each other in many ways.  The ways I mentioned in the first paragraph.  I have also spent a considerable amount of time illustrating the interception problem of David Greene in 2003 was similar to Aaron Murray’s in 2011. Georgia didn’t really beat anyone either season; and when it played good teams (2003:  LSUx2,  2011:  all four losses) Georgia was defeated.  Georgia relied heavily both of these seasons on its defense (and the offense was better last season Bobo haters). 

Could 2012 mirror 2004? 

Our 2012 defensive unit is filled with playmakers and hard-hitting talent.  Names like Jarvis Jones, Alec Ogletree, Bacarri Rambo, Sanders Commings, John Jenkins, Kwame Geathers, Abry Jones and Cornelius Washington are comparable to the names I listed from 2004.  Can our freshmen tailbacks come in and make an impact like Ware and Brown did?

 There are concerns.  The offensive line scares the living hell out of me.  But we are returning a stellar defense.  We have a veteran quarterback who has started a lot of games in the SEC.  There is depth and talent in the offensive skill positions.  The pieces are there to be great again.

In some ways, I hope it is not a direct mirror image.  I think the 2004 season was, aside from the letdown in 2008 and the debacle in 2010, the most disappointing season under Coach Richt.  

In 2004, Georgia went 10-2 and beat Florida.  I know the expectation is to play in Atlanta again this season-and it damn well should be.  But honestly, if I told you right now that Georgia would go 10-2 and beat Florida, how many of you wouldn’t take that in a minute?

If this team goes 10-2, beats Florida but misses out on the SEC Championship game, we will all be disappointed and rightly so.  But wouldn’t that in itself be a great measure of where we have rebounded from?  If having by most standards a successful season means disappointment, not going 8-5 and playing in Shreveport, then haven’t the right steps been made to rectify our program?

Unless the Dawgs completely implode, the only team on our schedule that has the offensive fire power to give our defense fits in the first 12 games is South Carolina.  The talent combined with the favorable schedule makes everything shape up well for the Dawgs in 2012.   If Georgia cannot shoot itself in the foot and get out of its own way, this upcoming season would not be a disappointment like the 2004 campaign.   That 2004 team wet the bed against Tennessee and ran into a buzz saw against Auburn.   There is no team on the 2012 schedule that is near as good as the 2004 Auburn team.

2011 was a repeat of the 2003 season.  If 2012 is in many ways a repeat of 2004, then what I predicted almost exactly a year ago would ring true…

I think with this infusion of Dream Team talent, plus the stability of Aaron Murray, Georgia is about to go on a run similar to what we saw in the early 2000s. I am not saying Georgia wins the SEC East this season, but it won’t be long at all.

To quote Jimmy Buffett, “better days are in the cards.”

 …and we would be on the cusp of another great run in UGA history. 


If You Are Going To Cheat, At Least Be Good

It seems like Dan Mullen and Mississippi State are going to be in some trouble (h/t Tyler Dawgden). 

One day, the shoe is going to drop on Auburn.  But at least they bought the best player money could buy.  What has Mississippi State bought recently?  An offense straight from the 1920s and no wins versus an SEC West school except Ole Miss.

Two head coaches before Mullen, Mississippi State had one of the most crooked coaches out there in Jackie Sherrill. 

Come on Bizzaro Bulldogs.  If you are going to be cheaters, at least win a Division game. 


Lewis Grizzard Wednesday: To My Son

In what has become a tradition around here, we open the season with our favorite Lewis Grizzard column.  It epitomizes what it means to tailgate and enjoy a game in Sanford Stadium.

Go Dawgs!

Great moments in a would be father’s life

 To my Son, if I ever have one:

Kid, I am writing this on September 3, 1984. I have just returned from Athens, where I spent Saturday watching the University of Georgia, your old dad’s alma matter, play football against Clemson.

While the events of the day were still fresh on my mind, I wanted to recount them so if you are ever born, you can read this and perhaps be able to share one of the great moments in your father’s life.

Saturday was a wonderful day on the Georgia campus.

We are talking blue, cloudless sky, a gentle breeze and a temperature suggesting summer’s end and autumn’s approach.

I said the blessing before we had lunch. I thanked the Lord for three things: fried chicken, potato salad and for the fact he had allowed me the privilege of being a Bulldog.

“And , Dear Lord,” I prayed, “bless all those not as fortunate as I.”

Imagine my son, 82,000 people, most whom were garbed in red, gathered together gazing down on a lush valley of hedge and grass where soon historic sporting combat would be launched.

Clemson was ranked number 2 in the nation, and Georgia, feared too young to compete with the veterans from beyond the river, could only dream, the smart money said, of emerging three hours hence victorious.

They had us 20-6 at the half, son. A man sitting in front of me said, “I just hope we don’t get embarrassed.”

My boy, I had never seen such a thing as came to pass in the second half. Todd Williams threw one long and high, and Herman Archie caught it in the end zone, and it was now 20-13.

Georgia got the ball again and scored again, and it was now 20-20, and my mouth was dry, and my hands were shaking, and this Clemson fan who had been running his mouth the whole ballgame suddenly shut his fat face.

Son, we got ahead 23-20, and the ground trembled and shook, and many were taken by fainting spells.

Clemson’s kicker, Donald Igwebuike, tied it 23-23 and this sacred place became the center of the universe.

Only seconds were left when Georgia’s kicker, Kevin Butler, stood poised in concentration. The ball rushed toward him, and it was placed upon the tee a heartbeat before his right foot launched it heavenward.

A lifetime later, the officials threw their arms aloft. From 60 yards away, Kevin Butler had been true, and Georgia led and would win 26-23.

I hugged perfect strangers and kissed a fat lady on the mouth. Grown men wept. Lightening flashed. Thunder rolled. Stars fell, and joy swept through, fetched by a hurricane of unleashed emotions.

When Georgia beat Alabama 18-17 in 1965, it was a staggering victory. When we came back against Georgia Tech and won 29-28 in1978, the Chapel bell rang all night. When we beat Florida 26-21 in the last seconds in 1980, we called it a miracle. And when we beat Notre Dame 17-10 in the Sugar Bowl that same year for the national championship, a woman pulled up her skirt and showed the world the Bulldog she had sewn on her underbritches.

But Saturday may have been even better than any of those.

Saturday in Athens was a religious experience.

I give this to you, son. Read it and re-read it, and keep it next to your heart. And when people want to know how you wound up with the name “Kevin” let them read it, and then they will know.