Don’t sugarcoat it.

Damn, Chip.

[Offensive Line] Outlook: Poor. If Georgia manages to negotiate the season without a starter losing significant time to an injury — a virtual impossibility — this could end up being a serviceable SEC group. More than likely the Bulldogs are going to have to coach around this position as a liability.

I think there’s the potential for the starting five to be more than serviceable.  But if any one of them gets hurt, things sure could get ugly in a hurry.

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25 Comments

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25 responses to “Don’t sugarcoat it.

  1. heyberto

    It’ll be interesting to see what happens with play calling if we get banged up. I’m not looking forward to that.

  2. Mayor of Dawgtown

    This is what happens when you do not oversign and everybody else does. You end up with a gap on your squad and cannot field a complete team. Personally I’m tired of this happening year after year.

    • Br'er Rabbit

      Ditto. It’s always something but it’s most often the o-line.

    • Spence

      We have signed almost double the number of linemen bama has since 2006.

      Bama 19
      Florida 24
      Uga 32

      This is not about over signing.

      • Chip Kelly

        Spence, I read your posts regularly and want to compliment you. I also agree with you almost all of the time. This time, however, I must respectfully disagree. Oversigning, at least as practiced in the SEC, is all about looking at your needs, running off those that do not fill your needs, then signing others that do. It is not only possible but highly likely that Satan…er…Saban has run off players from his own team that were better than the ones he kept because he was loaded at one spot and thin at another. For example, suppose that Bama is loaded at LB but thin on the OL. So you see that coming down the road. You had plenty of O-Linemen but several got injured and a couple flunked out. You are thin now in the interior line but you are fat at LB. Bye bye the bottom 2-3 LBs (even though they are pretty good players and have done everything you have asked for them to do) and hello more O-linemen. That is really what oversigning is all about not just signing more players at random. That is why Bama and certain other teams always are loaded across the board. I do not advocate it but if our rivals are doing it WTF are we supposed to do? Answer: Field an incomplete team.

        • Spence

          Thanks Chip.
          I don’t know enough about how other teams do oversigning and evaluations as compared to Georgia to speak on the issue, but I’ll accept that your argument is logical. Where we disagree is that I believe oversigning is about getting more players, and the numbers simply do not bear out that UGA has not recruited numbers at OL. So while your point may be spot on for other positions, I do not believe that oversigning or the lack thereof is the reason our OL has been so continually decimated. Respectfully, your argument (as it pertains to OL only) ignores the numbers.

          I also do not believe I am qualified to speak to why the ranks of our hogs up front are so continually decimated, however at some point one has to wonder if the consistent injuries are linked to strength+conditioning. Perhaps that may change? It also feels like we miss out on more OL recruits to other schools than we do skill positions, but that may be a function of numbers and perception.

          I also wonder when the steroid debate will enter the college football blogosphere. Does anyone else have a sneaking suspicion that certain programs may tend to rely upon NFL-caliber “pharmacists” to get their players as jacked up as they do? How did UGA take such a back seat to other programs when it comes to comparing the muscles on linemen? But nobody seems to want to talk about that…

          Regardless, Happy 4th to you and the rest of Dawg Nation! UGA! USA! UGA! USA! (see how easily those intertwine?) (notice that UF is more compatible with France than America?)

          • Macallanlover

            That last paragraph is what I would call a damned strong close….stronger than Train Smoke. I also agree there is no rational explanation for our OL problems, but whatever it is goes well beyond the oversigning issue (which I am very much opposed to.)

          • Dboy

            +1 on the pharmacy comment. I have wondered that myself after watching…cough Bama cough… linemen dominate other SEC lines over the past 5 years or so. Is their conditioning that good? Don’t they recruit from the same Highschool players as ther rest of the SEC?

            • Mayor of Dawgtown

              While we are on this subject, how is it that Nick Fairley became such a beast seemingly overnight? I remember Fairley from 2009 and he wasn’t anything to write home about–then suddenly he’s the Lombardi Award winner. Also his aberrant behavior. Looks awfully suspicious. Plus the school he played for has a history of not caring much about rules. Better football through chemistry?

          • Dog in Fla

            “(notice that UF is more compatible with France than America?)”

            don’t know about that but the Republicans running the state of Florida into the ground are more compatible with Vichy France than America

            http://saintpetersblog.com/2011/07/weekend-essay-floridians-face-uphill-battle-for-independence/

            “Make no mistake: This is not about liberals vs. conservatives — or Republicans vs. Democrats; it’s about what is right and what is wrong. The legislation and policies of the governor and legislative leadership are wrong.”

            http://www.chronicleonline.com/content/things-are-worse-you-may-think

  3. Tenn_Dawg

    The OL issues year in and year out is the single most frustrating issue that I have had with Richt’s program. Well….besides Willie. I hope that at least one preferably tow of the young guys surprises like Gates did last year. Is it too late to sign a beast from JUCO just so we have enough bodies? Big John is sure to know of a couple.

    • Tenn_Dawg

      I meant “two” not “tow”. Overall I agree with you Senator that the starters should be better than servicable.

    • junkardwag41

      I agree with you Tenn_Dawg that over the last 4 years, my biggest problems with the team were Willie and Searels. Having said that, CTG replaced Willie and Friend is in as OL coach. I am not ready to sell or buy any of the O line. There are way too many instances where we brought in players we didn’t think would contribute right away and ended up being in the mix due to injuries or abilities. Think Gates right here. I think we will be pleasantly surprised by what will roll out this fall. I have confidence we will see good things out of the line. The problems are going to be where we felt confident going into the season…. specifically QB play and D line play. (Sophomore slump and injury bugs…)

      • sUGArdaddy

        Except for the part about Richt and UGA not really having sophomore slumps:
        Zeier ’92: 10-2 citrus champs
        Greene ’02: 13-1 sec & sugar champs
        Stafford ’07: 11-2 sugar champs

  4. Larry Lane

    I agree with the Mayor. This is headlines every year. Who is in charge of getting those big uglies. Someone needs to find another job and get someone who knows how to fill the gaps. After a while you would think someone would see you can’t win championships with only five guys.

  5. If someone’s selling serviceable along the O-line, I’m buying, and I’m happy to get it. Also – what have you got in the way of safeties, linebackers who aren’t freshmen or in their first year at the position and promises of a dominant defensive line? I’m in those markets as well.

  6. Skeptic Dawg

    I am hoping that the departure of Searels will lead to improved O-line play. Yes, the Dawgs are thin up front, but they are not completely void of talent. Hopefully Friend will bring a fresh perspective to this group and they will develop into the road graders we all want to see.

  7. 2007 was pretty good. 5 starters & 1 reserve was all the OL had.
    2 seniors , 3 freshman, & JC transfer Sophmore Vince Vance was It.
    Check it out. The OL is my major concern too but It is about their quality of play, not their quantity. They did pretty good in 2007 with only the Six.

  8. AusDawg85

    I dunno…with all of the obvious success we have sending Carlton Thomas into the line on 3rd and long, what is there to worry?

  9. Homestead Dawg

    The DL has been the most under performing unit on the team for 3-4 years now.Everybody looks to the Offense for flaws but Garner and his crew haven’t done much since 07.

  10. Not a fan of Searels or Garner.. But I checked back to 2007.
    2007-Ol- 8 signed = 3 =4 star & 5= 3 star.
    2008 -Ol – 4 signed = 2 =4 star & 2 =3 star.
    2009-Ol-3 signed= 1= 4 star & 2 =3 star..
    2010-OL- 3 signed= 2 =4 star & 1 =3 star.
    2011-OL- 6 signed= 1 =4 star, 4 =3 star, & 1 =2 star (LS).
    That comes up to 24 over a 5 year period. 4 or 5 a year sounds about right to me especially with 9 = 4 stars; 14= 3 stars; & 1 LS.

    • JasonC

      Remember 07 was a desperation year where we had to sign a ton of OL because there was NO ONE there. IMO, it has been a mix of things, either signing too few guys or as mentioned above, getting too many projects and injured guys at the same time. I think when we got Benedict, bot he and Long has health issues, at the same time we already had Sturdivant dealing with knee issues.
      That’s like trying to to replace Mike Hampton with Mark Prior.

  11. Chuck

    I thought this would have been said, but while I agree that we have O-line problems under Richt – really, almost from the beginning – I don’t see it as a recruiting issue. We have had lots of promising recruits, but we are consistently one of the most dinged up lines around. Sturdivant’s knee is probably just bad luck, but we have had what seems like a dozen shoulder injuries over the last ten years, and they have always mystified me. I hope it was a conditioning issue, and also hope it is being addressed. Knees and ankles are going to happen, and I understand that shoulders can be a problem, but our high number suggests we have been doing something wrong. You can’t just train for strength and quickness; you have to have a little durability training in the mix as well.

  12. JasonC

    Sturdivant was bad luck, but we have recruited several guys that already had health issues. If you bring in guys that you know are going to have to recover, then you probably need to try and get another guy in case he doesn’t pan out (if there is space).

    UGA really needs to sign at least 2 of these 3: John Theus, Vadal Alexander and Joe Harris.

    Alexander is looking strongly at Bama, Auburn and LSU. If it is allowed, Dallas Lee & Kolton Houston need to be ringing this guy regularly to get him to come to UGA.

  13. Hobnail_Boot

    I’m still a helluva lot more concerned by the WR corps.