Posts Tagged 'uga football'

And it was well worth it

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Look, I’m a realist.

Do you really think that Ludacris was going to show up to do a show in Athens out of the goodness of his heart?

Well, in this week’s tale of the offseason college football news cycle, the its a major news item that, for the first time in a while, the gang in Butts Mehre has the audacity to *gasp* actually SPEND some of its financial intake.

Is $65,000 a lot for 15 minutes of work? Sure. It’s on the level of NASCAR teams that collect last-place prize money for running 10 laps and loading up on the trailer.

The anti-football communists and ones who are ok with UGA reverting back to the Goff era may not like the idea of throwing $65,000 around, but that’s a small price to pay for its already proven impact.

The atmosphere at G-Day created an unreal atmosphere for recruits – either in Athens or watching. The program grabbed the attention of the college football world by the horns – oh, and has also reaped immediate windfalls on the recruiting trail.

$65,000? A small price to pay.

Go Dawgs!

Lugnut Dawg

 

Is a big helping of patience in order?

I’m a big fan of winning. It’s better than losing.

Of course, the UGA Athletic Board has the same line of thinking by and large – that’s why Mark Richt is in Coral Gables and Kirby Smart was called to come home to Athens.

In a perfect world, the Smart regime would surpass anything Richt has ever done. But there’s an old saying I once heard – that you cannot make chicken salad without the chicken.

The steal a phrase from Smart’s old boss, ‘it’s a process.’

Georgia may not appear in the mold of how Kirby wants it in September. But will it be toward what he’s envisioning in a three-year plan by the time Auburn comes to town? I’d say odds are good.

There are depth issues at places like running back and inside linebacker. Yes, there’s young talent, but even when you’re in the fire of competition, it’s a learning curve, regardless of the ability.

And make no mistake – if Georgia has a similar record to the end of the Richt era (when Georgia was blessed with an easier schedule than it will face this year), the fans of The University of Mark Richt will be loud boisterous.

But there’s a reason why Georgia pulled the trigger to bring Kirby to Athens.

My prediction is this: It may not show with the record – but Smart will have this program headed in the right direction by November.

Go Dawgs!

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

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

Lewis Grizzard Wednesday: Does Tech’s ‘T’ Stand For Tacky?

Athens – This will end my crusade, at least until next September, to improve behavior at college football games.

After Georgia-Florida in Jacksonville, Florida players strutted in front of the Georgia fans at game’s end and rubbed in their victory by using obscene gestures.

After Georgia-Auburn, a member of the Georgia staff was hit in the head by a bottle thrown from the stands. So we come to Georgia-Georgia Tech here Saturday.

It was the Tech band that decided to show its collective hindparts.

At haltime, the Yellow Jacket musicians rolled out a Georgia Tech logo and covered the logo at midfield in Sanford Stadium that celebrates this, Georgia’s 100th year of football.

“The band,” said Tech drum major Dana Papp, “takes a lot of pride in our creativity.”

Creativity?

What creativity? All I saw was a group of juvenile horn blowers and drum beaters insulting the Georgia crowd.

It was like going to visit and neighbor’s house and deliberately spilling red wine on a white carpet.

The logo was painted on the stadium grass as a means of showing Georgia’s pride in its centennial season. Naturally, Georgia fans booed the Tech crowd.

“It made the people watch,” another member of the Tech band was quoted as saying. “Even if the response was negative, it was great.”

I thought people who make music in public did so to entertain. Whatever work went into the musical performance Saturday was completely wasted.

If those wusses had wanted to do something to make Georgia Tech look good in Sanford Stadium Saturday, they should have put on pads and gone out and stopped
Garrison Hearst. The Tech defense couldn’t, to the tune of a two-touchdown loss.

And speaking of Garrison Hearst, when he scored his third touchdown of the night, he struck the pose of the figure on the Heisman Trophy, given annually to college football’s most outstanding player.

I suppose he was trying to say, “I deserve the Heisman Trophy.”

I happen to agree, and I would like to see him win it. But I’d like to see him handle his acclaim as humbly and appreciatively as Georgia’s other Heisman winners, Frank Sinkwich and Herschel Walker.

And I happen to think Georgia coach Ray Goff would agree with me.

All this bragging, all this rubbing it in, all this show-boating, all this bottle throwing, comes from, I think, this “in your face” mentality in sports.

ESPN uses “in your face” to promote its sports coverage. “In your face” is just another way of saying, “Up yours.”

It breeds anger, and I don’t think anybody who sees it is impressed one bit.

Would the Tech band like to know what Georgia fans said to describe their little prank?

I heard “tacky” a lot, as well as “low class.”

Yeah, kids, you made quite an impression.

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

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

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

30 years ago, this Lewis wrote this classic

30 years ago today exactly, Kevin Butler’s mammoth field goal kick upset Clemson.

We’re guilty of re-posting this column of Lewis Grizzard’s but it’s very, very fitting on a day like today.

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.


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