Archive for the 'Coaching' Category

And we still don’t know

On Saturday, before everything hit the bed, myself and few of my other tailgating comrades in arms were mushing over so many aspects of what we thought may or may not happen on the field at a sloshy Sanford Stadium.

One comment that was said still sticks out…”we don’t know how good we are.”

Honestly, I’m still not sure how good…or bad this team is.

This team isn’t as good as it looked against South Carolina. As we’ve seen, bad teams make other teams look great, and Spurrier’s bunch are a very bad football team that may not win four games. One concern that I had Saturday was, ‘what if Lambert looked good because USC’s defense is that bad?’ That turned out to be right, in a way.

At the same time, this team isn’t as bad as it looked on Saturday. A very motivated Alabama team had something to do with that. Bama came out of the corner swinging desperate punches like its life depending on it, and it showed. Why Georgia didn’t show that desperation? That’s another post for another time. Alabama found some holes in Georgia’s defense and exposed them (vulnerability to covering the tight end finally caught up), and Lambert’s first look at a top of the line defense exposed how to easily rattle him.

Still, there is something to be said about how much field position and Georgia having to go away from its running game turned things on Saturday.

It’s a broken record, and I tire of saying it, but despite the loss, all things are still in reach for this team. Is Georgia as good as it looked against USC? No. But it’s not as bad as it looked on Saturday as well.

Lugnut Dawg

This was for you, Ray Goff

Few head coaches at The University of Georgia have been as maligned as Ray Goff, who had the unfortunate circumstance of taking over as head coach of a handstrung program that at the same time became a glutton for punishment at the hands of the Ol’ Ball Coach, especially when he hung half a hundred on the Dawgs in 1995 in Athens.

I wasn’t in Sanford that day – but know plenty who were. If you had to endure that day, Saturday night was especially sweet.

1966 was a lifelong torture. 1997 was sweet revenge. Last night? That was an undressing. Georgia has a good team, and showed it. USCe is down, and Georgia exposed it in a big way.

Detractors – you know they are out there. They’ll pull out the fact that, “but…USC is a bad team. That win isn’t that big.”

Not hardly.

How many times has Georgia played an inferior team and slopped its way to an ugly win. I’ll eat crow – I expected it on Saturday. But what we saw on Saturday is what championship teams do – take care of business and make a statement – do what you are there to do to start with.

Will this team play on that level the rest of the year? Probably not. You cannot expect that over the course of a season. In a perfect world, you could bottle up the emotion of Saturday and sprinkle it around each week. We remember all too begrudgingly the 2004 LSU win followed up by a flat loss to Tennessee…even the 1997 Florida win followed by laying an egg against Auburn.

But if this team plays at a fraction of what we saw Saturday – executing on both sides of the ball and a lack of special teams gaffes…for the most part…bigger things could be in store later down the line.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg

This Saturday Could Be Heaven or Hell If You Hate Spurrier

The way I see it, Saturday can go one of two ways. And it’ll carry two very different emotions with it.

On one hand is the fact that it could be one of the most revered wins in Georgia history. Stay with me here. Any true Georgia fan HATES Steve Spurrier with a passion. Now there are some, like Kensington Dawg and myself that enjoy his wit and one-liners, but you cannot be a true UGA fan and hate the coach that is Spurrier.

Thing is – the feeling is mutual. Spurrier detests Georgia, and it shows. That’s why Saturday could be a very sweet victory. It’d rank up with the other two big Georgia wins against the OBC – tarnishing his 1966 Heisman season and preventing Florida from going unbeaten and the 1997 streak-breaking route of the Florida in the WLOCP.

If Georgia wins Saturday, it will more or less raise the warning flags up that perhaps Spurrier’s time has past even more and would mark the beginning of the end. It’d also put USCe at 0-2 in the conference. Think about it – Georgia can put the Gamecocks into the ground barely into the season. Talk about a dream come true if you hate Spurrier.

But there’s the other aspect of Saturday, the one that worries me.

Here we are with a chance to embarrass and humiliate a rival. Sound familiar, anyone? Heck, USC even has a quarterback that recently bagged groceries…which of course is an awful flashback to the WLOCP last year. It’s well known of course. Spurrier hates Georgia, and would like nothing more than to pull off another win in Athens and send the UGA program into chaos, as we has done before.

Go Dawgs

Lugnut Dawg

Five Sunday Morning Thoughts

– It’s almost a dropkick to the stomach. You wait all spring and summer for the season, and lightning stops and later shortens the opener. Still, it was all in all a good day. The offense did a lot of good things, nobody got hurt and points got put on the board by not having to crack the playbook open. As nice as it would have been to play those final 9:51, that’s also 9:51 that injuries could not occur.

– Man. How great was it to see Keith Marshall carry the ball and get into the end zone? A healthy Keith Marshall, as we saw back in 2012, makes a pretty good 1-2 punch…or in the current case, 1-2-3.

– Lambert wasn’t spectacular, but he made some nice throws when needed – which is what he needs to do, for the most part. The chatter from camp about his football IQ showed. Lambert not only didn’t turn it over, but you didn’t really see any balls thrown that should have been picked off, either.

– One of the things that would drive you nuts about Bobo was at times underutilizing the tight ends. How nice was it to see the first TD pass of the day to a tight end?

– It was disconcerting to see all the pass completions by ULM, but some of that may have been the very basic packages that Pruitt was running and also some first-game rust from the secondary. That’s something that can easily be fixed before road tripping to Nashville next weekend.

Go Dawgs

Lugnut Dawg

You’re a DGD, Coach Landers

I’m not naive. I know that to many, Georgia women’s basketball is either a casual interest or niche sport, for the most part. But when you say Lady Bulldogs basketball, the first person to come to mind is Andy Landers.

He’s a only full-time coach that UGA has ever had – let that one sink in and marinate for a minute.

If you only judge a coach by championships – Landers was not successful. But that’s the thing – success is an entire body of work, and that is what Landers embodied during his career.

31 NCAA Tourneys

20 Sweet Sixteens

11 Elite Eights

5 Final Fours

7 SEC Championships

4 SEC Tournament titles

He had the highly unfortunate fortune to be in the same conference as the great coach in women’s hoops, Pat Summit. Put Landers in a different conference or region, and who knows what would have been.

No shortage of tremendous women’s greats have played for Landers – the Miller twins, Teresa Edwards (perhaps the most decorated women’s basketball player of all time), Katrina McClain, among others. But they came to Athens for one reason – the program that Landers built from the ground up into an elite operation.

Happy trails, Coach Landers. You’ve earned every bit of it.

Go Lady Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg

Making sense of Saturday’s nonsensicals

– Georgia may have lost this game on a squib kick, but it was the game itself was lost well before that. Fact is, the better team won on Saturday, Georgia just came close to digging itself out of a big hole just in the nick of time. For the most part, this same team that overpowered Auburn and Clemson got manhandled by Tech. Basically, it was the Florida game all over again. If I’m playing Georgia, I run it, run it and run it. because as good as this defense is against the spread, its as lacking against power running games.

– Really a shame for Hutson Mason. He probably got more out of his ability than most players in the CMR era – but he’ll be remembered for a massively boneheaded play in the worst time to make it.

– I turned and made sure to exit Saturday and not see GT players taking pieces of our hedges. It sucks that it happens, but when you protect your house, it doesn’t happen. Then again, fair is fair – Ben Jones gave us one of the better post-game shots a few years ago with a chunk of yellow turf in his mouth, so it works both ways.

– You cannot, CANNOT get inside the five three times and score a combined three points. I said to myself at the half that Georgia would lose after the two first-half fumbles.

– Speaking of fumbles, Georgia got a gift on Swann’s return….but based on the screw jobs by refs on Georgia this year, we were due for once.

– Look, I like accountability as much as the next guy, but this after the fact business of, ‘yeah I messed up,’ is getting old and getting old fast. It doesn’t matter if you admit it was a bad decision, it was STILL a bad decision. The squib kick ranks up there with the 2001 goal line debacle against Auburn and opting to redshirt Knowshon Moreno. One of the biggest mistakes in TV series history was when Coy and Vance were in the Dukes of Hazzard. Every knows it was a bad mistake, but it does not change the fact that it took place.

– That said, I’m not on the “fire Richt” bandwagon. Bonehead things happen. Remember Saban in the Iron Bowl last year? That said, everyone on the staff should have their feed held to the fire after losing to Georgia’s two biggest rivals. That should not be unacceptable. The problem is that being ‘pretty good’ seems to be ok with the UGA administration.

– Please, for the love of Christmas, don’t make us play Nebraska again in a bowl.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg

Jacksonvilling, A Georgia Tradition


The winning team with more than 400 rushing yards.

The losing team’s fans taking to social media to rip the losing coach to shreds, some calling for his firing.

On paper, and if you asked anyone outside the Georgia fan base the past week, they’ve have surmised that it would have been Georgia with the 38 points and gaudy rushing yards, and Florida with the loss and possibly placing the red tag in Will Muschamp’s locker.

Then again, none of those fans know that us Georgia fans know all too well. There’s a little thing called Jacksonville, and for whatever reason, Georgia’s more underwhelming performances happen at Everbank Field. It may not be a true neutral site, but that can’t be an excuse to let down after let down. Go back in Mark Richt’s tenure and better Georgia teams have either struggled to beat, or lose to inferior Florida teams.

But Saturday? It took it to another level. In terms of losses under Mark Richt, it, to me is among the top three most shameful, in the same breath as the 2006 Sugar Bowl and 2008 against Georgia Tech.

It’s unconscionable that a team that rolls over Mizzou and Arkansas, on the road, to be blunt, just seemed uninterested in being there on Saturday. More baffling? This team’s worst performances this year have come off open dates. I mean, if this coaching staff has problems keeping players sharp, why the heck not scrimmage someone like Buford High on open weekends?

The officials Saturday? They were bad, as usual. Was Gurley missed? Yes, but it wouldn’t have meant much with the way Georgia was beaten up front.

But it’s funny, in a way. Saturday may have been the final laugh for Georgia toward the Muschamp era at Florida. Instead, it is one that Florida fans will always remember, and remind Georgia fans with infamy – very similar to Georgia’s 1985 win over top-ranked Florida. And, depending on what happens the rest of the year, could be the turning point for Richt’s turnaround during the past three seasons. Sure, it’s post-game gut reactions, but all I know is a lot of Richt apologists last night appeared to be tired of defending Richt, and may be finally resolving that maybe their loyalty needs to be reevaluated.

At the end of the day, the problem is this. Georgia fans are asking themselves why this team has put together another underwhelming showing in a game it had no business losing going in. And it happens season after season.

Saturday was a chance to continue moving this program forward. Instead, it took multiple steps back, and it may need a win over Auburn in two weeks to get back on track.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg



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