Archive for the 'Football' Category

A Non-Conference Road Trip Wish List

In case you missed it, McGarity hinted recently about some possible non-conference road trips that could be in the works at some point in the future. Unfortunately, a lot of moving parts prevent a lot of dream matchups, but hey, one can hope, right?

Here are ten dream road trips, in no particular order.

10. Texas

Austin is compared to Athens by some as being on par with The Classic City. What better way to see it for ourselves?

9. Michigan

It’s The Big House, that in itself gives it some allure. If tOSU wants to chicken out of playing Georgia, let’s take on their rival.

8. Washington

Don’t let the rainy season fool you. Seattle is a very nice area, especially in September. Plus, who wouldn’t want to tailgate on a boat that you can float right up to the backside of the stadium.

7. USC (The Real One)

The trip to LA would in itself be great, not to mention taking on someone like USC

6. Oklahoma

A chance to embarrass Stoops on his home field? Sign me up.

5. West Virginia

Play the game in November and make a ski trip out of it on the side

4. Penn State

Other than getting to take on James Franklin again, two programs like UGA and Penn State would be an ideal match

3. Pitt

The venue would be less than attractive, but I’m up for avenging a Sugar Bowl loss any time.

2. Stanford

Tailgating in wine country would have its benefits.

1. Northwestern

Can you imagine a road trip to Chicago? Of course, it’d need to be early in the year. Lewis warned us about Illinois winters.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg

Keep him home, Falcons

I’ll be transparent here. My NFL allegiance is not with the Falcons. Sure, I want them to do well as an in-state team, but I’m an NFL fan first of the team that plays at the same site of the WLOCP.

Still, the Falcons have a tremendous chance to ignite a whole other base by doing one thing tonight – drafting Todd Gurley.

Is running back the team’s most pressing need? No, but if Thomas Dimitroff is a bright as he is at times perceived, you can shore up defense in the later rounds and snag up Gurley at No. 8.

Now, Gurley alone would not put fans in the seats (winning does that). But, it would draw in an entire group of fans that have either ignored or casually followed the Falcons for Years. The Falcons mismanagement over the years has at times passed over UGA products. But you don’t pick a guy solely because he sells a few tickets and jerseys. You pick him because he will help you win games.

Gurley, however, would do both.

No matter where Gurley goes, some of the Bulldog Nation follow. It’d be great to keep that energy in Atlanta.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg

A return, and way too early look at the schedule

Well, after a rather long hiatus, we’re back. Due to some real-job goings on and Little Lugnut Dawg having to go into the hospital the weekend of the Auburn game and having some after-effects, it’s been awhile (update on Little Lugnut coming at some point down the road).

At any rate, this is the least favorite time of the year. There’s too much time, as Munson would say, until the season gets here. All that’s left to do is think ahead to preseason camp and pray to all things holy that no UGA players do anything knuckleheaded off the field. It doesn’t help that the offseason will drag by at a snail’s pace with the looming trainwreck that is the Braves (thanks for the screw job, Frank Wren).

Speaking of that schedule, there’s a lot of time to mull over how it may shake it out. Here’s how it could turn out, week to week.

Sept. 5, Louisiana-Monroe

Should be a steady diet of getting things in sync and hopefully, time for Ram-Bau-Park to get a good feel for the offense

Sept. 12, at Vanderbilt

Nice scheduling break here, getting a first SEC road game for a new QB against a lower-rung team of the conference.

Sept. 19, South Carolina

This’ll be a war, as always. No beating around the bush. USCe’s offensive holes do make you feel a tad better until you realize the HBC is on the other sideline.

Sept. 26, Southern

Are they bringing their band?

Oct 3, Alabama

Possibly the most anticipated home game in Athens since many of us 30ish Dawgs were in diapers. The shot at Bama for the first time since five yards short? The first trip to Athens since a darker shade of jersey out? The atmosphere itself will be worth being in Athens for.

Oct. 10, at Tennessee

This has trap game all over it, being on the road and a week after what will be a charged game against Bama.

Oct. 17, Mizzou

Who’d of thought four years ago that Missouri would be a game with heavy SEC East implications riding on it?

Oct. 31, Florida

Given the rebuilding in Jortsville, Georgia should win. We said that last year, too

Nov. 7, Kentucky

Scrappy Kentucky team could prove to be a speed bump in between a pair of rivalry games.

Nov. 14, at Auburn

I’m more worried now that Bobo is not around to counter Muschamp. Take away the UF game last year, and Georgia had an apparent advantage. Not so sure now, although that could change.

Nov. 21, Georgia Southern

With GSU no longer running a true option, this game is less of an advantage preceding Tech. Georgia Southern now has a bunch knowing they can hang with big-time teams and be in the game. That could be scary for Georgia, especially if it is banged up or deshoveled after a loss to Auburn, if it happens.

Nov. 28, at Georgia Tech

Only thing worse than losing to the NATS? Losing to them twice in a row.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg

Jacksonvilling, A Georgia Tradition

38-20.

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

Timing is everything

Sometimes, timing is everything.

Once the Gurley bombshell broke, one thing that immediately jumped out was that being on the road against Mizzou may have been the best thing for this team.

Halfway across the country, free of close friends and family and the buzz around campus, free of the fog of gameday on campus may have been just what this group needed. It enabled them to focus in and send the entire country a message, and it showed. The memo was laid out – if you think that this team will fold because its best player is sidelined by archaic NCAA rules, you have another thing coming.

And as if the day could not get better, we got to spend the rest of it watching Auburn, Tech and Florida lose. Icing on the cake!

Saturday was one of those moments, kind of like when Georgia hired Jeremy Pruitt, when you thought to yourself, “this is real? This is UGA football and not someone else?”

For whatever reason, it has been quite some time since Georgia dominated someone like it did in all phases of the game like it did Saturday that was a quality opponent. 2006 Auburn comes to mind.

Will this team click as well against Arkansas as it did on Saturday? Probably not. I’m already worried about stopping a run game that’s stronger than what Mizzou had.

But that’s a worry for another day.

For now, let’s enjoy this one.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg

Style points or not, it’s all about the wins from now on

– To quote the noted orator from Faber College, “nothing is over until we decide it is!”

In the midst of the fog of despair of the loss to USC-East, one thought, though tough to swallow, is that the pursuit of the SEC East was still within this team’s control. It gets old having that mindset for the Georgia program, but that is the reality with the way the schedule sets up.

All of a sudden, the game next month at Mizzou is very, very large. Funny thing is, it was one of the biggest worries of the season going in – back to back road trips to Fayetteville and Mizzou won’t be easy.

The bottom line is this – it doesn’t matter how you win in this league as long as you win. From here on out, it’s win out and you head to Atlanta. The wins still count the same amount, regardless of how hideous they look.

That’s how I look at the Tennessee win. Was it a bland victory in some ways? Yes. Georgia won in spite of a punchless passing attack and the good fortune of Tennessee catching fumblitis in its own end zone.

But it’s still a win. I’m sure USC would gladly take an ugly win over Mizzou instead of a loss on Saturday.

From here on out, it is all about getting a win – no matter how they come.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg

Has the Tennessee rivalry lost a step?

Rivalries are a funny thing. You highly dislike them and want to be beat them and beat them bad. But once you do it too much, can it lessen the rivalry.

To a degree, that’s where the Georgia-Tennessee rivalry is right now.

Unless you live up near North Georgia right now, Tennessee has taken on the look of another game on the schedule. The Vols have fallen on hard times (if you have had to endure UT fans, you shed no tears over it). To a point, you want to do a combination of laugh and pity them (maybe a small amount). That’s how it goes when you regularly beat someone.

There’s a part of Georgia’s younger fan base that wonders why UGA and Tech still play, and do not have a genuine dislike for the maggots. But the ‘old school’ fans…or those of us who lived through the 1998 to 2000 Tech wins, see Tech as a massive rivalry.

Tennessee is the same way. As Macon Dawg noted earlier this week, if you think the Bama fans (aka, the guy who saw Bama play on TV one time when he was 9 years old) are unbearable, you didn’t have to deal with the Tennessee fans in the 1990s.

This is a fan base that, and still does, shove the greatness of Peyton Manning down our throats. This is the program that got away with Nick Fairley-style cheap shots game after game with guys like Raynoch Thompson. UT took full advantage of UGA being mediocre in the 1990s and 2000s. If there was a recruit in the Atlanta area, the Volunteers and Phat Phil usually got them. You want to talk about lucking into a national title? UT took the cake in 1998 when Clint Stoerner inexplicably fumbled the ball right into Tennessee’s hands. And of course, there’s the engineering nightmare of a stadium in Knoxville. The capacity of that place needs an asterisk by it – it’s easy to cram 100,000 plus in with seats that narrow.

Oh, and then there’s that idiotic song that oddly enough was written by a Georgian.

Time has healed some dislike of Tennessee. Other than Lane Kiffin, there’s not much much to hate about Tennessee recently.

There will be if Butch Jones takes UT a step forward Saturday.

Somewhere along the way, the intensity of the rivalry has lost some steam. It needs to get back to the dislike of a bad guy wrestling in WCW.

Saturday’s kickoff is early, there is no doubting that, and Tennessee could benefit from a flat, late-arriving crowd (it did so in the 2004 upset).

If you’re heading to the game, get there early. The Bulldog Nation needs to get back to treating Tennessee like an old hated rival again.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg


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