Random thoughts about Georgia-South Carolina

1.  Let’s get the pessimism out of the way first – can Georgia win this Saturday?  Shit, yeah.  Lest we forget, the Dawgs lost by three on the road to a top ten team despite (1) losing the turnover battle; (2) losing its best receiver early in the game (3) losing its best player for a significant part of the game; (4) generating its typical penalty fest; (5) coming out on the short end of the stick, luckwise (Clemson horse tackle penalty saves a Georgia score, Clemson movement penalty negates a bad snap on the Tigers’ last scoring drive); (6) blowing a first-and-goal on the Clemson five with a bad snap on what may have turned out to be a score that would have resulted in a tie in overtime… well, you get my drift.

I don’t offer this in the spirit of claiming a moral victory.  Quite the contrary. Georgia deserved to lose because it made too many mistakes to win – “too many” being the operative term there.  To screw up as much as they did on top of having as many breaks go against them as happened and still lose by only a field goal to a team that’s firmly in the national title conversation suggests that there were a lot of good things being done by those same Dawgs.  That doesn’t mean they’ll get everything fixed this week against the ‘Cocks, but I’d sure rather take my chances on a team that’s capable of winning if it makes fewer mistakes than one that’s only got a shot to win if it plays over its head.

2.  History may not tell us who’s going to win the game, but it does suggest that whichever team wins will do so in a close one.  Since 2001, no game in this series played in Athens has been decided by more than five points except for Georgia’s lopsided win in 2003 (still love that TD return on the onside kick).  Spurrier has never won in Athens as South Carolina’s head coach by more than four points.

You know what can matter in close games?  The home crowd.  And if I can take a moment to gently criticize those of you who have worried about how this Saturday’s crowd can be expected to react, some of y’all have very selective memories.  Instead of fretting about Auburn ’99, or complaining how Sanford Stadium never seems to rock except for the blackout game in ’07, why don’t you consider a more recent and relevant example?  I refer, of course, to the 2009 South Carolina game.  Remember that one?  Carolina raced out to a 17-7 lead.  It seemed like Georgia’s offense never touched the ball. If there were a time for the crowd to give up on the home team, that would have been a reasonable one.  But the offense started to get some traction.  Then this happened…

… and the place went bonkers.  It was a high energy venue for the rest of the night.  That was a good thing, because Martinez’ defense allowed Garcia to have a career game.  But Sanford was as loud as I’ve ever heard it on Carolina’s last play of the game, when Rennie Curran stopped them short.  That led to one of my favorite moments in the series.

You’ve got a young defense that can feed off the crowd’s energy, if it’s there.  So when Richt is asking us to show up and be loud, he’s not blowing smoke.  He’s remembering his history.

3.  Have you noticed how opposite the strengths and weaknesses of Murray and Shaw are?  Shaw is a legitimate running threat;  Murray ain’t.  The weakest part of Shaw’s game is the intermediate throw, as he lacks the arm strength to make that toss consistently.  Murray’s intermediate game, however, may be his strong suit.  Shaw does his best throwing when he’s stable in the pocket and is much less of a threat throwing on the run.  Murray, as we saw as recently as last week, remains a real passing threat when he’s flushed from the pocket and forced to throw on the move.  And if Murray struggles against quality opponents, Shaw’s problem seems to be tied to geography.  When he’s away from Columbia, he’s definitely less effective, as last year’s split stats show.

South Carolina already knows what it needs to do to keep Murray in check, namely, rinse and repeat last year’s success of breaking down Georgia’s offensive line and pressing the receivers to keep them from getting open before the rush got to Murray.  Georgia needs to force Shaw from the pocket without allowing him to escape on the outside and do damage with his feet.  I would argue that the Dawgs are better equipped to do that than they were last year.  It’s worth watching to see if the improvement I noticed in containing the edge against Clemson was a mirage, because it could be a big deal if the defense can either force Shaw inside with his runs (remember, this is a kid who doesn’t like to slide) or, even better, make him throw the ball outside the pocket.

4.  I mentioned it yesterday, but Marcus Lattimore is gone.  You can give me all you want about how the Lattimore of 2011 and 2012 wasn’t the Lattimore of 2010, and I’m not buying it.  Because against Georgia he was.  One key for Georgia is making sure the dominant running back shoe is on the other foot.

Gurley is all-world caliber. Best RB we’ll play this year in the regular season. We didn’t tackle him well when we had our shots. You can’t hit him high and you have to wrap him up. We didn’t do either.

Yeah, baby.

5.  One other thing missing from the Gamecock offense is that tall, pain in the ass wide receiver.  Shaq Roland is the tallest wideout SC counts on, but he’s only 6’1″ and still isn’t the most consistent fellow.  Ellington is probably their best wideout.  He’s a tough son of a gun, but he’s also a 5’9″ tough son of a gun.  If the secondary can avoid getting beat, it will be tough for Shaw to place throws over them to shorter guys.

On the other hand, the ‘Cocks get both their tight ends back and they’re both good ‘uns.  It will be a very different challenge for Georgia’s pass defense this week than what it had to handle at Clemson.

6.  Mitchell is gone, so we’ll have to see who steps up to replace his production.  It sounds like the Carolina secondary is banged up and may be missing two starters, so that helps.  But it may not help that much if the offensive line can’t do a better job protecting Murray.  Again, it looks another week when we shouldn’t question the conventional wisdom about how the game shapes up.

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84 Comments

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84 responses to “Random thoughts about Georgia-South Carolina

  1. The other Doug

    I’d like to see Murray bootlegging with Clowney chasing early and often. Wear him out.

  2. Jim

    Good analysis. Hope the stadium gets fired up because the fan-base feels pretty flat right now (myself included).

    Last week’s game feels a lot to me like the 2011 game against USC where we lost 45-42 because we made so many mistakes. I said after that game we had a absolute boat load of talent and could end up with a dang good team. I kind of feel the same way now. We definitely SHOULD have beaten Clem’s son just like we SHOULD have beaten SC in 2011. Of course I think ’13 UGA/Clem is on a different level talent wise than 2011 UGA/SC

    I think we’ll find that we look like a much better football team Saturday after some mistake-corrections in practice this week. But their front 4 is still the big question.

  3. Baitstand

    The only wisdom I’m questioning concerns Mike Bobo and his play calling.

    • If by that you mean doing a better job of taking into account the o-line’s… um… inconsistencies in pass protection, I’m with you there. As for the rest, 545 yards of offense last week suggests he’s getting some things right.

      • Dboy

        Yes, Bobo started adjusting to account for the Oline’s shortcomings late in the 3rd Quarter after the fake punt. We moved the ball much better. Alas, just a bit too late

        • D.N. Nation

          “Alas, just a bit too late”

          We were in position to tie the game in the fourth quarter.

          • Dboy

            “We were in position to tie the game in the fourth quarter.”

            True, but why just be in postition to tie? Why not be ahead by 2 TDs in the 4th quarter b/c you adjusted earlier, rather than waste 6-7 drives in the middle of the game getting repeatedly pummeled by the Clemson Dline.

      • baitstand

        First and goal from the six. Run Keith Marshall up the middle three straight times, et al.

        • AusDawg85

          On 3rd down we tried the fullback dive with Hicks again. This is so “Bobo”. It worked so well earlier in the game, he obviously felt it would work again. If it does, he’s brilliant, but it really didn’t reflect a play call that accounted for Clemson stacking all 11 defenders tight on the first two downs, and again on 3rd down. The fake to Hicks and easy toss to Lynch peeling off to the right would have been wide open (yes, in hindsight for sure as you look at the replay, but that’s a play we have and use successfully). This is the kind of 6th sense about calling plays I just don’t often see Bobo having IMHO.

          • CitadelDawg

            That’s also the play 90% of Bulldog fans were hoping Bobo would call on 2nd or 3rd down there; I don’t think it’s an “in retrospect” situation, I think it’s an “everyone knew the play that would work except, it seems, Mike Bobo.” At times last year he seemed brilliant, I hope it comes back tomorrow afternoon.

          • Minnesota Dawg

            Yep. I think we could run that FB dive play a hundred times against that defense in that situation, and it wouldn’t work once. It was blocked half-way decently and there were still two LBs in the gap that were completely unaccounted for. The epitome of a “play calling” failure rather than an “execution” failure. That play was so destined to fail, I’ve got to blame our fifth year senior QB a little too for not getting out of it. Possibly, he doesn’t have audible authority in those situations? Should have at least merited a time-out.

            • Hicks said he made a mistake leaving his feet and should have stayed on the ground and tried to blast his way through.

              • Minnesota Dawg

                Through 3 LBs (one partially blocked by Hall), through the collapsing line, from three yards out?! I’m sorry….Watch the replay again–there is no way he is scoring regardless of where his feet were located. If that comment originated from him, so be it–might just be defending his coaches. If one of the coaches planted that in his head (“Hicks, you didn’t score because you left your feet”), then shame on them.

  4. RP

    Hot day, 4:30, we need to use our depth at all positions. Keep hitting 7 with Hicks until he gets tired of it. And please try some Marshall runs to the outside.

  5. Castleberry

    I’m not banking on #4 too much. I was really impressed with Mike Davis in their game last week. It’s a drop off, but our tackling tell me he could have a good game against us.

  6. uglydawg

    Good and encouraging analysis, Senator. You put a lot of thought into that and it makes sense to me. I believe South Carolina will run the ball a lot. They have an emerging star running back and a good line on both sides of the ball. If they get a lead, it will become trench warfare.
    Georgia running the ball away from Clowney will negate him somewhat, but the DE on the other side is no slouch. I think Georgia will try to run several screen passes. I would also like to see the shovel pass to Gurley in the middle, but I don’t know if that is even in the playbook.
    Georgia’s recievers will have to get open quickly so AM can dump the ball before he gets too much pressure…and this could result in an interception or two.
    I think the key to this game for Georgia is the offensive line giving Gurley enough of a hole to get into the secondary. If they can do that consistently, Georgia will have a good chance to win the game…IF they can do that consistently. Noise can be a factor..and any booing of the Dawgs will be detrimental and will only delight and encourage Da Debil.

    • The other Doug

      If the O line gives Gurley a big enough hole to reach the secondary we will win easily.

      • adam

        That is true of every game this year. And would’ve been true for Clemson as well. Hell, if he could just get to the linebackers, it would be a start.

    • IveyLeaguer

      ["I think the key to this game for Georgia is the offensive line giving Gurley enough of a hole to get into the secondary. "]

      Or even a good crease. He doesn’t need much. I agree. Give him a real hole and there’s no telling what he does with the play. The kid is phenomenal. That is a big key, if not THE most important key, outside of not beating yourself.

      The offense also has to keep the Carolina defense honest. So the rest of the offense has to function properly. But that should be no problem, unless we just can’t block them.

      Not beating yourself is Georgia’s biggest key, because if you do that, it’s likely none of the other stuff will matter, unless of course Carolina gets careless and decides to give us a bunch of Christmas presents, too. FWIW, I don’t see that happening.

      We’ve got to be solid. And give the ball to Gurley.
      ~~~

    • El Dawgo in El Paso

      I think running the ball AT Clowney would be better than running it away. Leads with the fullback and/or a pulling lineman would wear anyone down quickly.

      • IveyLeaguer

        Agree.
        ~~~

      • IveyLeaguer

        BTW, how many days has it rained in El Paso this year? :)

        • El Dawgo in El Paso

          More than the last couple of years. I just got back from Afghanistan and it is unusually green here for this time of year.

          • IveyLeaguer

            I spent a total of a month there in 1973 and 1974. Medical duty @ Beaumont Medical Center. Had a good time. The paper used to run a little heading on the front page everyday .. something like “only 15 days the sun didn’t shine in El Paso”. :)

            Played a lot of tennis out there, at the El Paso Town and Tennis Club. I hear it’s still there.

            Good luck to you.
            ~~~

  7. Gurley needs to carry the ball more than 25 times. If that happens, we win. If Clown is the best player in the country, then the two best players in the country will be lining up tomorrow on opposite sides of the ball. We need a steady dose of Gurley and his amazing 5 yard gains. Honestly, watching the gamefilm from last week he reminded me of Knowshon the way he was cutting back and being shifty. I couldn’t believe it since they say he’s so big and a “power” back.

    We win this game with Gurley and a xanex (for Murray).

    • IveyLeaguer

      ["Gurley needs to carry the ball more than 25 times. If that happens, we win."]

      I wouldn’t doubt it.
      ~~~

  8. OL has to play better. Simple as that. If it plays as it did against Florida last year, UGA wins by 10. If it plays like it did last week, they lose by 10.

  9. Bulldog Joe

    Well-written summary. We embarrassed ourselves in the Boise State game but our fans rose to the occasion against South Carolina, even in a losing effort.

    This one has the feel of a lower-scoring game as I expect South Carolina to play ball-control with the running game from its backs and QB and rely on its defense and special teams to force turnovers. Sounds odd for a Spurrier-coached team, but that’s exactly what they have been.

    Our crowd will need to be a factor in helping disrupt them. As Florida and LSU ‘s crowds demonstrated last year, Shaw doesn’t handle noise very well. Their backup does a better job but lacks the mobility that our defense often struggles with. Getting him in there should be a good sign that things are going well for us.

    • IveyLeaguer

      Nice post. We simply beat ourselves in 2011, just a sloppy game in Athens. But we played hard.

      And that’s a great point.
      ~~~

  10. Skeptic Dawg

    So this game is huge! 2nd game of the season and the Dawgs find themselves fighting for respect and their season. There has been tons of blame thrown at Murray, Bobo, the OL and Grantham. Bottom line is that the OL needs to step up (read Andrews, Gates and Houston if he even plays). I am tired of watching this team come up short when it matters the most. I am frustrated with the mental mistakes. I am over poor defensive play. And I am sick to my stomach of watching Murray cough up the ball in huge games. There is simply too much talent (4 and 5 star kids lined up all over the field on both sides of the ball) for Georgia to so consistently lose big games. It is time to line up and knock the man in front of you in the dirt. It is time for this team to puts its foot on USC throat. GATA!

    • Joe Schmoe

      How the F can you blame Murray for that fumble last week? He got crushed from the blind side due to a missed block and could have understandably fumbled a couple of other times on similar plays.

      • Dboy

        “How the F can you blame Murray for that fumble last week?”

        YES

      • IveyLeaguer

        ["How the F can you blame Murray for that fumble last week?"]

        Easy. Same way Richt and Bobo did. It’s the QB’s job to squeeze the ball when he’s under pressure like that. That’s fundamental stuff.
        ~~~

  11. Beer Money

    One thing you left off Senator…the visor. And if Gurley gets 25 carries, that visor is gonna have grass stains all over it.

    If Gurley plays the whole game last week then none of this negative nancy crap that a large portion of our fanbase seems to celebrate and revel in would even exist.

    Get after their ass and play like your hair’s on fire. That goes for the crowd too. Stay home if all you are going to to do is bitch and moan.

    This may define our season and by far is the biggest game of the year.

  12. tludlam

    Watching it again, Gurley’s 75-yarder is such a thing of beauty. I recall Bobo once referred to the delayed draw as our bread and butter running play. Why give the defense time to close the holes? I much prefer how the quick toss on this play got Gurley downhill as fast as possible. Herbie points out the tremendous playside blocks thrown by Burnette, Lynch, and Hicks, but I’d like to point out that Andrews taking out the trailing ILB (#42) was also essential to allowing Gurley to reach the secondary untouched. Big #3 might have stiff-armed or run through the contact, but any hit probably would have slowed him enough that the safety would have caught him. Though our center has been rightly maligned for some bad plays that night, I’ve got high praise for the effort and execution by #61 on that play. Amazing what can happen when everybody does his own job.

    • uglydawg

      Good points, tludlam. This o’line needs help from the scheme…the delayed draw (redundent description..when is a draw not delayed?) seems to give the other team time to pile into the closing holes. It is going to take a little offensive imagination to beat SC, but it can be done.

    • Bulldog Joe

      Equally amazing is we never called that play again.

  13. charlottedawg

    Predictions for the game

    -USC will gain over 150 yards on the ground
    -Murray will have at least one turnover
    -USC will score off said turnover(s)
    -Georgia will lose because it’s a top 10 team, not sure if it’ll be a “moral victory” like Alabama or the 2011 game or just an embarrassment like last year but it’ll be an L

    I really hope I’m wrong but given recent trends I’m pretty confident I’ll be 4 for 4. If I’m wrong feel free to give me shit as that’s one plate of crow I’m happy to eat.

    In regards to the senator’s post I’d like to expand a little more on #1. In a nutshell that’s our problem as a program: It’s always Georgia making the mental mistakes and shooting itself in the foot in crunch time. Being undisciplined mentally has cost us God knows how many games. Aaron Murray’s struggles against ranked teams have been well chronicled, its a trend i think will continue this week, but I think the reasons are a lot more complex than either side’s willing to discuss. 1) i think it’s overlooked and i think the biggest reason for all those losses to ranked teams: he just doesn’t have a good enough supporting cast. He’s usually had good skill players around him on offense but that’s about it. I have no doubt if you put him on LSU or Alabama he’d leave as the winningest QB in NCAA history as they consistently field good o lines and defenses. But unfortunately for him he plays for Georgia which means he’s going to have an o line that usually lets him down and a defense that usually lets good teams score 30+ even when you take out points off Murray’s turnovers. 2)he’s very good statistically but damn does he get rattled when the pressure’s on. How many times have we seen him make the throws to beat a quality opponent, I’d count the second half of the Florida game last year and the bowl game against Nebraska and even then he threw some pretty god awful interceptions (I’ll cut him a little slack on the Nebraska one as KM fell down). Put it another way Murray when he’s on is much better than David Greene ever was but if you put him on the plains in the 4th quarter in 2002 we’re most likely watching the SECCG from home. He can make the throws to get you 5 yards from going to the NC game but it remains to be seen if he can make that one throw to get you to the NC game. He gets a chance this week, I’d love nothing more for him to get over that hump but I have my doubts. Just my 2 cents, your mileage may vary.

    • It’s always Georgia making the mental mistakes and shooting itself in the foot in crunch time.

      That explains UF’s six turnovers last year.

      • charlottedawg

        Ok fine. but 1) we shouldn’t count on beating opponents especially good opponents because they screw up multiple times. 2)Murray had more than his fair share in that game. He wasn’t particularly pressured on any of the 3 interceptions. the last one to Josh Evans there wasn’t even a red jersey in the vicinity. Not to mention we were in fg range on at least one of those picks. If he plays a cleaner game the game might not have been high scoring but it’s not close.

        Finally those turnovers by Florida weren’t mental errors, they were forced ;)

      • IveyLeaguer

        No, but it explains how we did our best to lose the game in the first half, yet ended up winning anyway. That, and the play of Jarvis Jones for 60 minutes.

        Otherwise, we lose.
        ~~~

    • Ginny

      “It’s always Georgia making the mental mistakes and shooting itself in the foot in crunch time.”

      I don’t understand this idea that Georgia’s the only team that makes mental mistakes. In every football game, there is a winner and a loser. The loser usually loses because of mental mistakes, undisciplined play, turnovers, etc. We have won AND LOST roughly as many games the last two years as the top teams in the SEC. When these other teams lose, is it not because of the same mistakes that we make in our losses? Obviously you’re going to notice our mistakes more because you follow us, but does Florida, South Carolina, LSU, etc. not lose games because of the same reasons that we lose games? I don’t get this.

      • dawgfan17

        Murray had exactly 1 INT in the second half of games last year. It is not crunch time that is his problem. He starts out slow in some big games but crunch time is not his problem.

        • adam

          The mid-game stretch of futility is as bad or worse than the slow starts. I think it just takes Murray a second to settle in. Maybe he needs to be on beta blockers or something.

    • PTC DAWG

      I am glad you don’t give the pregame speech.

    • El Dawgo in El Paso

      As a Dawg fan, I, for one, will never claim a “moral victory” in a loss to South Carolina and Spurrier. There just is no such thing, I don’t care how many 11 win seasons they string together.

  14. Will Trane

    Dline. Elliott and OBC are going to do what Bama did. Come right at the Dline. They are very confident they can control the clock and the board with their run game. Dline has to make stops of 1st and 2nd.
    Oline has issue. Not good, and could be some improvement. It is what it is…do not count on it. QB must get the ball out adn not hold it. Also, do not turn it over.

  15. jryuuu

    thanks for the write up.

    haven’t really kept up with any practice observations or injury updates aside from MM being done.. how’s everyone else looking? burnette playing/starting?

  16. AusDawg85

    Senator, terrible analysis. The Kool-aid is poison. Here’s what we learned this week from all our GTP experts:
    – CMR can’t hire quality coaches
    – said coaches can’t coach-up our obvious talent advantage
    – Grantham is from the NFL and his schemes are too complex for college kids, and aren’t designed to stop the run anyway
    – Aaron Murray will not make it to the NFL, can’t beat good teams, is a head case, and must be perfect to win, which he’s not capable of being
    – we don’t tackle, practice tackling, like to tackle, know what it even is
    – Our offensive game plan is scripted weeks in advance and will not be altered by reality
    – Special teams? What special teams?
    - The O line can’t stop a one-legged ballerina running uphill
    – Jadaveon Clowney
    – Steve Spurrier

    Doomed…biggest blowout we’ve ever faced in Sanford since SOS brought the gators to our house.

    Man I miss Munson!

  17. uglydawg

    Dogs win tomorrow.

  18. Keese

    Everyone pointing to Clemson being a top ten team. I just don’t share the same opinion. USC is a much better team. Clemson will win some games but their not a Nat Champ quality team

    • Minnesota Dawg

      Kind of what I’m thinking, too. I’m not optimistic. This week we’ll be facing a MUCH better defense and an offense that is different, more methodical, but can be very good. IMO, only upside to this week from last week is that we’re at home. As the Senator notes, let’s make that count for something.

    • IveyLeaguer

      This is a much tougher task than Clemson. You’re right about that.
      ~~~

      • RocketDawg

        What are you basing these comments off of?? To me Clemson has the look of a team that can beat anyone. They were very fundamentally sound on both sides of the ball, have a 5th year Senior QB who didn’t make mistakes, an explosive WR that any team they play will have a hard time covering, solid O-line and RB play. Oh yeah, their defensive line was pretty good too. Wouldn’t surprise me in the least if Clemson beats the Chickens this year.

        • IveyLeaguer

          Good question, Rocket. Primarily, South Carolina’s fronts, their OL and their Front 7 on defense. They’re much better than Clemson, if last year and their game vs. UNC is an accurate indication. They have a level of physicality Clemson doesn’t have.

          Some other factors:
          1) Spurrier generally outcoaches us. Example; When something works, he’ll keep doing it until you stop it. He won’t outcoach himself. Several years ago, Lattimore ran us into oblivion, most of it by running the SAME PLAY.
          2) SC has a couple of strong, tough backs, capable of breaking tackles. The Clemson guy was good, but not as good as we made him look.
          3) Maybe it’s just me, but I’m just as concerned about Shaw as I was Boyd. Neither was an overwhelming concern, but if their running game gets going, Shaw is even more dangerous, IMO.
          4) Spurrier has transformed himself into a Vince Dooley clone. When he signed Lattimore, he did a 180. Now, his philosophy is defense, kicking game, offensive line, and being fundamentally sound and solid, not making mistakes.
          Looking at South Carolina now, it’s like Georgia was in the ’60′s, ’70′s, and ’80′s, except Spurrier is more apt to fake it and throw downfield. you look at them, and realize what it’s going to take to beat them, and you’re humbled and full of respect. That’s the way people used to look at Georgia.
          Does Spurrier respect Georgia? You bet he does, but for different reasons. The point is, a Dooley-type team is going to be tough, you know that, and they’re not going to beat themselves. You are going to have to whip them.
          Clemson is nothing like that. They have firepower on offense, fueled by two great players. But I suspect their defense isn’t as good as we made them look for a substantial portion of that game.

          I really believe Spurrier’s basic game plan is to play solid and let Georgia just beat themselves. That’s been our M.O. for some 7 years now, and Spurrier knows that. Last week did nothing to dispel that notion. It’s worked the last several years, and he doesn’t like to get away from something that’s working. Can’t say that I blame him.

          Another thing, their OL is 45 lbs. bigger than our front, on average. That’s not always an advantage, against Boise we were the biggest OL in all of football, and they were among the smallest DL, yet they whipped us good. But the SC OL isn’t like we were in 2011. They’re for real.
          I’m worried about the middle of the defense if we play the same guys we did in Clemson. I hope we play Taylor more inside and, if they get to pounding us, the bigger thumper-type ILB’s, even though they’re TF and don’t know the defense yet. We’ve got to do whatever it takes to hold up in the middle, IMHO.

          There’s more, but that’s the thrust of it.

          My head says we are too soft and sloppy to win the this game. My heart says we’re a wounded Dawg backed into a corner, and the aggressor is in trouble .. we’re gonna fight to the death.

          Sure hope my head is wrong.
          ~~~

  19. NRBQ

    Lest we forget, The Ole Ball Sack loves him some trickeration. He’s got be slobbering on himself looking at all those greenhorn Dawgs on defense.

    I’m afraid that could be a real factor tomorrow, and I expect him to try some sneaky shit early.

  20. Russ

    Man, I hate the internet.

  21. So why with both a HC and and OC/QB coach who were BOTH QBs in college, have we flatly refused to place an premium on OL play/recruiting? You would think that two former QBs would appreciate fostering an environment where their playcaller doesn’t get killed when the LT falls over once the ball is snapped.

  22. IveyLeaguer

    Nice post. Here’s my take on the game …

    It IS hard to see a W in this one, as many have said all week. And we won’t see one if we are the same team we were in Clemson. Some of my football friends, most of them former players and coaches, are concerned with the lack of development of the lines of scrimmage, the OL in particular. They feel it’s somewhat unrealistic to expect that much development in one week.

    Their point about developing overnight is valid. We have to have done a lot more toward that end than was apparent in Clemson to have a chance to make the improvement we need. I don’t know if we have or not.

    When I look at South Carolina, I see a Vince Dooley-type team. It’s as if Spurrier junked his old system in 2009 and began channeling Vince Dooley. I look at South Carolina, and I see Georgia in the ’60′s, ’70′s, and ’80′s, in the good years. Only difference is more of a tendency to fake and throw downfield.

    Defense, Kicking Game, Offensive Line, run the ball, play solid and don’t beat yourself, let the other guy make the mistake. That was Dooley’s M.O., and the are dozens of good examples of that (Georgia 10, Texas 9 in the 1984 Cotton Bowl comes to mind). And that’s what Spurrier has done at South Carolina, and he deserved credit for it. That’s the mark of a great coach, there’s more than one way to win.

    So when I look at Carolina, I see them as teams used to see us, with respect. You look at them, and realize what it will take to beat them, and it’s automatic. Do Spurrier respect us? You bet he does, right down to his socks. So this one has all the makings of a classic, SEC battle. It’ll be physical, a bloodbath, unless one team quits.

    We don’t have a whole lot that we know we can count on, in terms of how we can match up with South Carolina. But what we do know is we have Todd Gurley. This is a once-in-a-generation back. IMHO, he’s the best back to play at Georgia, save for Herschel and maybe Charley Trippi.

    He can absolutely win the game for us. But even he has to have a crease of some kind to run through, which he didn’t have last year. So there again, we get back to the OL, and of course, the rest of the offense to keep the attack in balance.

    Many don’t think we can do it. But it seems to me we should be able to do what it takes in this game. In all 3 phases, not just the offense. But it starts with the OL.

    This is the same OL that blocked Florida and Alabama with some success last year. So I have to believe it’s just a matter of manning up. We were soft last week. There’s just no excuse for that.

    It’s time to get physical, and time to get mentally tough. This might be the SEC or NC game, for crying out loud. Are we man enough? I really believe that’s the question. If we are, there’s no reason we shouldn’t win this game.

    Man up, and get the job done. And, of course, don’t beat yourself.
    ~~~

  23. El Dawgo in El Paso

    Good write up. Dawgs win by a wider margin than most doomsday prophets think. We went into a hostile environment last week against a legit top ten team and shot ourselves in the foot, nearly coming out with the W. This team can still be really, really good.

    • uglydawg

      I’llbuy it, ElDawgo…Play with a reasonable number of penalties and don’t lose the turnover battle and it should be a good day.

    • IveyLeaguer

      Hope you guys are right. Here it is, already Saturday in a few minutes, and I still can’t get past the concern of our OL and DL handling what South Carolina brings.

      I know it’s possible, but also know it’ll take something we haven’t shown on the lines of scrimmage in quite some time. I’d love to see it, though. There’s nothing I’d enjoy more than whipping South Carolina up front.
      ~~~

  24. Debby Balcer

    I am glad to see the clip. I hope the fans won’t be flat. I believe the team wants this and will be on fire.