First, it was “the spread offense will never work in the SEC”.
Next, it was “the spread offense looks unstoppable – Tebow for Heisman”.
Last night it was 312 yards of offense and 17 points.
Ole Miss provided the template to defending Meyer’s offense. Last night we saw what happens when a team has the players on defense to implement the game plan successfully. That being said, we should be careful to read too much into the results from last night. How many SEC defenses combine great team speed with big tackles that can stand their ground and stop the run up the middle that’s the Tebow trademark?
Well, there is the one that the Gators will face this week in Baton Rouge. A second loss for the Gators would certainly make the SEC East race interesting. The key after that will be if there’s any other team in the conference that can pin that third loss on Florida.
One thing I’m curious about this morning – do you think the fans in Gainesville or Tuscaloosa are more bummed out from yesterday’s results? I’m guessing the latter.
Just ask Florida, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Texas, etc.
Some observations from a sunburnt Saturday:
- If anything, the team came out flatter against Ole Miss than it did against South Carolina. I don’t know what the issue is, but all this talk about competition isn’t having the desired effect when they step on the field, at least at Sanford against SEC competition. The flip side of the coin is knowing that Georgia was still able to put away an opponent like that without bringing its “A” game.
- There is no excuse for a Georgia defense giving up 175 yards of offense in the first quarter to a team than runs an offense that’s even more vanilla than Georgia’s. Had Adams not fumbled the snap on the Georgia one, there’s no telling where the game goes from there.
- I was a little surprised at how poorly the Dawg offensive line played out of the gate, considering that Mississippi’s defensive line had shown very little on the season. I was much more surprised at how ineffective Georgia’s defensive line was for much of the game, especially on UM’s long drive to open the third quarter that tied the game at 17.
- While the offensive line had its share of blocking woes, the wide receivers as a group continue to impress with their downfield blocking. I saw guys like Moore, Wilson, Bailey and, of course, Massaquoi throw key blocks on plays throughout the game.
- Maybe it’s impatience on my part, but it looks like Stafford is just treading water right now in developing his game. Yesterday, he locked onto receivers a couple of times that I noticed and forced throws instead of finding the open man and getting the ball there. Then again, on plays like the TD to Massaquoi, he’s got that amazing ability to improvise and make a big play happen. I just want to see more consistency.
- I keep saying it, but you can’t help but be impressed with Massaquoi’s play this season. He’s not the deep threat that Bailey is, but in terms of the total package of route running, consistency catching the ball and blocking, he’s Georgia’s most complete receiver.
- There’s something really annoying about wasting a perfectly executed onside kick.
- To say that Thomas Brown is a remarkable player may not be doing him justice. If anything, he’s a better runner than he was before the injury. To date, he and Moreno are the team MVPs.
- All grumbling aside, this is the classic game where a month later nobody is going to remember much about it, other than the margin of victory (hey, Florida only beat Mississippi by six!). Sometimes it’s not so bad not to have a game televised.
I would be remiss if I didn’t throw in the pop culture reference story of the day. I walked to the game with my eighteen year old freshman daughter who explained to me how she had just learned a popular dance called “Superman” from a YouTube instructional video. During the second half the strains of a rap song began playing over the Sanford PA system and my daughter excitedly announced that was the song that she learned the dance to. I then notice that Dannell Ellerbe is (on the field!) subtly busting a couple of steps to the music. Next, the topper: up on the big screen, we’re treated to Brown and Moreno (and it looked like Lumpkin jumped in late) showing their moves. All in all, pretty funny stuff – although it’s a good thing they were winning at the time.
For your further entertainment, here’s how to “Crank That”:
That West Virginia-Louisville matchup has sure lost some of its preseason allure, hasn’t it?
Last night provided another excellent reason why college polls shouldn’t get underway until the season has a few weeks under its belt. Schools like WVU and Louisville achieve lofty ratings, primarily because they play in conferences that lack depth, and routinely get exposed. That was not a #5 team we saw play last night.
As you watch this clip
keep in mind:
- this is going on during the game
- the player’s been an active participant in the game, with four catches for Boise State
- Porta-Potties don’t have sinks
I’m not sure what amazes me the most about it all – that this guy is trying to get an autograph from someone who’s making a beeline from the bathroom back to the game he’s playing in, that it’s so easy for the players and fans to have access to the facilities during the game or that someone actually decided to film people going to the bathroom.
(h/t The Wizard of Odds)
UPDATE: I guess Jim Harbaugh would have something to say about it.
Let’s see – Michael Adams gets doused with beer in Tuscaloosa by ‘Bama fans… and, as a result, is “increasingly ready to go” to a policy of revoking the ticket privileges of misbehaving fans. In Athens.
And, Dawg fans, you’d better be on your best behavior this Saturday. Or else.
… UGA’s president further used Wednesday’s media session to issue something of an ultimatum to fans heading to Athens for Saturday afternoon’s home football game with the University of Mississippi.
“I want Ole Miss to be treated this weekend better than we were treated at Alabama. … Ole Miss should be treated as guests,” Adams said.
Of course, if that’s the imperial “we” he’s using, that may not be a very high bar he’s setting for Georgia folks.
It’s probably for the best that Adams watches the games from a box in Sanford. There’s no telling what kind of proclamation he’d issue if he sat in the stands behind some fans that wanted to cheer on their feet most of the time.
My favorite Dawg last year was Ray Gant. One reason for that was because he was always good for a quote.
It looks like Jeff Owens is bucking to step into Gant’s shoes. Maybe it’s becoming a defensive tackle tradition at UGA. Anyway, I got a kick out of this excerpt from an interview he did that was published in this week’s Bulldawg Illustrated:
Give me one word or phrase to describe yourself on the field.
I do not want to sound conceited.
A couple of days ago, I linked to a story in USA Today about how the NCAA was looking to expand the playoffs for 1-AA football to 18 games.
Well, according to the same paper, it looks like the NCAA is just getting started.
The championship and competition cabinet last week forwarded a proposal to the NCAA’s board of directors to enlarge the current 16-team field to 18 beginning in 2008. Cabinet chair Carolyn Femovich says that is the first step toward a field of 24 in the near future.
“I think that’s the ideal number we’re shooting for,” says Femovich, executive director of the I-AA Patriot League. “The cabinet heard loud and clear that future expansion could be both warranted and necessary to provide access to all of our qualified conferences and members.”
In case you’re wondering, that’s 24 schools out of 120 total in Division 1-AA. For now, of course…