Fiutak ❤ the Dawgs.

CFN’s 2010 Georgia preview is out, and Pete Fiutak might surprise you with how strong he feels the team is now.

This is pretty spot on.

The team will be far better if … it wins the turnover battle and if it stops screwing up. Georgia, with enough talent and speed to hang around with anyone in the SEC, forced two fumbles and picked off ten passes, while the offense gave it away 28 times. Alright, so takeaways aren’t necessarily indicative of success (Florida and Cincinnati only recovered three fumbles and Alabama came up with seven), but the knucklehead streak when it came to penalties didn’t help. The Bulldogs were flagged 105 times; only five teams got hit with more penalties.

He’s got the quarterbacks as the weakest unit and the offensive line as the strongest, both of which assessments are hard to argue with.  If I had to nitpick, I’d probably rate the running backs a little higher and the linebackers a little lower than he does.  I’d also make a bigger deal out of the transition on defense.

But like I said, that’s nitpicking.  His definition of 2010 success is in line with what most of us are thinking now.

The season will be a success if … Georgia wins the SEC East. If you’re going to catch Florida, do it now. The Bulldogs might still be growing, too, but they have the schedule and just enough talent to win the division to get to the SEC title game. For a team with so many concerns, anything else would be gravy. If this isn’t a division-winning year, 10-2 with a January 1st bowl game would signal a big bounceback.

I might quibble with the “do it now part” a little, as I think 2011 is setting up very nicely as the year that the program can make a big run, but I can’t say I wouldn’t be happy if that’s how this year plays out.  Damned happy, as a matter of fact.

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13 Comments

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13 responses to “Fiutak ❤ the Dawgs.

  1. I keep noticing one thing about the defensive transition…..it puts more of our athletes on the field than the 43 did. Having Houston, Washington and Dobbs on the field at the same time seems like a pretty big deal. When we go nickel we will have 5 of the premiere athletes in the SEC on the field at one time…..that has to be a good thing. I truly believe we will be better fundamentally….that seemed like 75% of the problem under Martinez.

    Win, lose or draw…..I believe people will start to fear the Georgia defense once again. Alligator arms and nervous feet go a long way in creating turnovers.

    Cry havoc!,.. and let slip the dawgs of war.

  2. greg

    Washington and Houston could have monster years – they are both studs. Dobbs hasn’t really shown much in terms of being a play maker, but he’s a pretty solid player.

    Nervous about how Murray and the defense will perform, especially early in the season. South Carolina(as usual) and Arkansas are looking at their early games with UGA as season defining games. Those two games will be huge for us as well in the big scheme of things.

  3. JC in Powder Springs

    Murray doesn’t have to be “outstanding”. I’ll gladly settle for competent. Something like 20 TD’s & 10 ints are acceptable if we stick with the running game 60%+ of plays – like we should. Otherwise, have to agree with the article 100%. Yes, reduce the penalties and stupid mistakes to a minimum, and the talent is there for 10+ wins. Fiutak nailed it.

  4. dboy

    I am leery of saying: our best chance is 2011. Those kind of statements keep coming out of underachieving programs. Good coaches win. They win with less than the next guy if necessary. No one was expecting the Dawgs of the early 2000s to be so good but they were. The time is now. The OL will never be stronger. The opposition has never seen our defense. Alabama and UF will not be weaker… the loss of players / QBs / Coaches is part of the college game for everyone. Win Now, Now Now.

    • JC in Powder Springs

      Ya know, we’ve made all these changes with coaches, fundamentals, some players, somewhat easier schedule, etc. But pundits seem to expect the same team as last year – same turnovers, same penalties, same porous D, same QB results, same W/L record. It makes no sense and I don’t get it. A normal person would expect positive changes to provide positive results.

      Correct me if I’m wrong, but when CTG took the job, he didn’t say he wanted the D to get better in 2011. I’m pretty sure he meant immediately.

    • JC in Powder Springs

      Of course, I would consider Fiutak the except to “pundits” in my previous post.

  5. D.N. Nation

    I like how we doubled up opponents in the 2nd quarter. Of course, it makes sense seeing the holes our defense/dumb turnovers left the offense in.

  6. Rum-Dawg Millionaire

    I may be in the minority, but I expect the defense to have a huge bounceback year. We have plenty of talent on defense. We have what I believe to be the most talented secondary in the SEC. With our new coaching staff, which is I think oustanding, we’re not just going to be better, we’re going to be A LOT better, possibly top 3-4 in the conference.

  7. Cojones

    Good buncha Dawgs on here. Warms the heart. The fleas have retreated and we now have notices that smack of writers doing their homework. I’m not worried about a damn thing from these Dawgs and can’t wait for the Fall. I’ll have to go fly fishing and pretend the popper is like a baited offensive play for a big score. “QB fakes to the RB, he’s looking for a halfback over center for a 10 yd gain, the line holds steady and….Wha!!… there are two players streaking down each sideline!.. It’s Green!…and Charles!!…ball in the air ..on line…it’s Charles breaking wide open down the right side…Got it!!..TD!! with a Plant City connection. So far in this game it’s 3 for AJ and 2 for Orson!”

    I sink the hook to the big redbreast after the teaser twitch and he struggles mightily against the 3 lb line, but he is outwitted again. It steadies my mind to the task at hand. Another successful day of peace while awaiting the Guns of Aug/Sept. and the promise of another football year. Unleash the Dogs of War! Indeed!

  8. Bleck

    The def will be better b/c other teams were reading our defensive calls. I’m telling you.
    WeeWilly was getting too comfortable with signals and got figured out. As long as the D plays average…the team will be much improved.

  9. David

    Fiutak is one of the few people in the media who loves UGA…and I hate to be Debbie Downer, but he had us preseason #5 last year…and look how that turned out. But, I do agree with what he is saying…I think we can win the East, for sure, but I’ll take 11-2 with a New Year’s Day bowl victory.

    • Mayor of Dawgtown

      The LSU game was stolen from the Dawgs and but for a freshman back getting the play wrong at the wrong time in the UK game the Dawgs win that, too. That’s a 10-3 season in ’09, even with the bad D, but for some really bad breaks. But the silver lining is that it woke up CMR and the D problems have been addressed. Fiutak is right. If anything, he is understating things. Have faith. (Also, pray Murray stays healthy.)

      • And we very easily could have lost to South Carolina and Arkansas, putting it right back at 8-5. For that matter, a few things go differently and we lose to Auburn as well, making it 7-6.

        8-5 is what we earned. Woulda shoulda coulda is meaningless.