For some people, winning isn’t enough.

The Augusta Chronicle’s Scott Michaux argues that Georgia won’t sufficiently impress the voters who make up the human component of the BCS tally unless it starts kicking some righteous ass.

The Bulldogs have not built up any “style points” this season, and winning with style is an undeniable factor in the subjective polling that comprises college football’s idiotic postseason reward system. Margin of victory might have been eliminated from the computer mechanisms in place in the BCS, but it still holds at least subconscious sway with the human voters who make up two-thirds of the equation.

And the AJ-C’s Jeff Schultz tries to put a more nuanced spin on the same argument…

Mark Richt reminded everybody Tuesday that he is not into style points because, in his words: “Winning to me is pretty stylish.”

It was a fine, catchy phrase to help keep players focused. It will be even better as an opening shot if Georgia wins out and Richt is trying to lobby pollsters to help push his one-loss team into the BCS title game.

… by saying that the Dawgs’ lack of style points in its wins to date is itself an indication that they aren’t playing well enough to beat LSU or Florida.

As much as I’m tempted to do my fair share of hand-wringing at this point – and Schultz’ argument certainly has some merit to it, as Stafford concedes in the article – I’m also heartened by something he alludes to later in his piece.

… The Dogs were a preseason No. 1. The drive to that spot actually started in game eight a year ago. They were 5-2 after a loss to Tennessee and a narrow escape at Vanderbilt. Then they rolled up 42 points on Florida, 45 on Auburn and 41 on Hawaii in the Sugar Bowl.

Does anyone deny that Georgia, last season’s #2 or #3 in the final polls, is in a better place right now than it was at the same point in ’07?  That’s not to guarantee that everything is going to wind up the same way, but it seems silly to offer advice as if this team doesn’t know how to go about accomplishing its goals for this season.

When you look at the path for Georgia that Barnhart described yesterday,

The Bulldogs’ schedule is as tough as it gets starting with Saturday’s trip to LSU (5-1). Even if it wins in Baton Rouge, Georgia will be beat up when it goes to Jacksonville to play Florida (5-1). Then there are consecutive roads trips to Kentucky (5-2) and Auburn (4-3) before hosting an improving team from Georgia Tech (6-1). Survive all that and Georgia could meet No. 2 Alabama (7-0) in the SEC championship game. Wow.

… it’s both a blessing and a curse.  It’s certainly a tough row to hoe, but there’s not a team there that can’t be beaten.  And if Georgia does run that table, it’s going to be tough to keep it out of the BCS title game.  No matter how much style is lacking from those wins.

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UPDATE: On a lighter, NCSFW, note, Pulpwood thinks the Dawgs need to step it up a notch, too.

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3 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

3 responses to “For some people, winning isn’t enough.

  1. Macallanlover

    Just win baby! All I want for Christmas is an SEC and we can get that with W’s, no political BS required. At the beginning of the year, it was unrealistic to expect any more of this team, with all the injuries it would be a phenomenal achievement to even make it to Atlanta. Of the 17 starters UGA returned (and that combined with the #2 ranking in the final poll is why they were so highly rated in July) eight of them have missed all, or at least half, of the games we have played. This does not even touch on the shifts required by these injuries, and the number of quality back-ups that have not been ablr to contribute.

    Some may say injuries are a part of football, and that is true, but the degree of impact at UGA has been exceptional, and to not reset your pre-season expectations is unrealistic. I originally had UGA going 10-2 with 11-1 being “best case”. I now see 10-2 as best case, and 11-1 about a 10 percent possibility. I think 9-3 is more probably than 10-2. Folks need to forget about polls and national perception. Let’s just figure out how to wrangle an invite to Atlanta for early December. That would be “styling” to me….every year.

  2. Macallanlover

    Oops, no way to edit, meant 9-3 is “as likely” as 10-2, not “more probable”. I would have thought 9-3 was a worst case record before the season started. I think many fans would be terribly disappointed with this record, but that is because of pre-season expectations that have not been adjusted to reflect the players available.

  3. Exactly, if we make it through this gauntlet, I don’t care whether Penn State is undefeated or not, we play for the championship. Style be damned.