The reaction sets in.

I know you’ll find it a huge surprise to find this kind of question raised at a Tennessee blog, but over at Rocky Talk Top, Joel asks “Are the Georgia Bulldogs overrated?”

You can no doubt guess his conclusion, although he’s pretty gracious about it (“Look, Georgia is going to have a great team this year. Better than Tennessee. Better than anyone in the East except for perhaps Florida. But No. 1 in the nation? No. Sorry. Not buying it. Not yet.”), but that’s not what I wanted to focus on here.

One of his knocks on Georgia concerns last year’s seven game winning streak that finished out the season:

Yeah, but . . . look at who they beat in those seven games: Florida (9-4), Troy (8-4), Auburn (9-4), Kentucky (8-5), Georgia Tech (7-6), and Hawaii (12-1).

Yes, look at who Georgia beat. All seven of those teams finished with winning records. All but one played in bowl games. Three finished ranked in the top seventeen of the coaches’ poll.

As a comparison, UT finished 6-1 in its last seven. The Vols played four schools that finished the season with winning records in that period, all of which played in a bowl. Two of those teams finished ranked in the top twenty five.

Not that that’s unusual. Skip the winning streak for a minute. I couldn’t find a single national title contender from last season whose opponents’ resumes over the last seven games didn’t include at least one team that finished with a losing record, for example.

I’m not claiming that the Dawgs faced the toughest road in the country down the stretch last year. But that was certainly a credible slate of games they played. Let’s put it this way – after the Vandy game, I doubt you’d have found very many takers for the proposition that Georgia would have run the table against that bunch.

There are certainly valid reasons to question Georgia’s chances in 2008. The way the Dawgs finished last season ain’t one of them.

8 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, The Blogosphere

8 responses to “The reaction sets in.

  1. dean

    That is an odd angle to take considering most prognosticators are picking the Dawgs # 1 for that reason (and the talent we have coming back). I know I’m a little bit bias but I thought it was a pretty impressive run. As you mentioned, after the Vandy game I thought we’d do good to win 2 out of the last 5. But to beat the teams we did, the way we did, I thought was impressive. The experience most of the team gained by the embarrassing losses and the unbelievable wins will pay huge dividends this season.

    Are we overrated? Only time will tell.
    Do we deserve to be ranked # 1? Sure. I don’t see why not. We finished better than any team last year and we didn’t lose many starters. An argument can be made for Southern Cal and possibly Ohio St being ranked #1 and frankly I don’t care if they are as long as we are top 5.

    Is it me or did all the UT fans posting on that site forget they had an off week before the game last year. Not making excuses but off weeks do help, sometimes.

  2. HamDawg11

    You may want to remind them that we have an off week before them this year! Can we say, “Blackout!!!”?

  3. dean, I had, in fact, quite forgotten that we had a bye week before the Tennessee-Georgia game, so that probably does explain a lot. We also had the equivalent of a week off just before the Arkansas game (we beat Louisiana-Lafayette 59-7), so apparently John Chavis can get even the worst run defense to buck up if given enough time.

    Really, the post was just about a matter of degrees. I wasn’t saying Georgia wouldn’t have a great team, just that I didn’t know if they deserved as much hype as they’re getting. Similarly, I didn’t mean to disparage the seven-game win-out streak except to point out that it might not be quite as impressive as it first sounds.

  4. Oh, and frankly, I hope the Dawgs continue to get the hype. It worked wonders for us the summer of 2005.
    ;-)

  5. It’s the hype that concerns me the most, honestly.

    You’re thinking of the summer of 2005; I remember October of 2004. I’d rather not see history repeat itself. ;)

  6. dean

    The reason I mention the bye week is I’m sure all UT players (defensive) heard during that off week was how Georgia was going to run all over that poor defense. There was bulletin board material all over the place about our running game and Moreno. Now I don’t know about you but when I keep hearing about how good someone else is and how bad I am I tend to get a little attitude. And I’m not saying that UT doesn’t win the game without the bye week. However in this case it did seem to help.

    In regards to the streak, I beg to differ. While the overall records of the teams isn’t overwhelming (53 – 24 combined) it’s nothing to laugh at either. But if you consider that Auburn was 6th in the NCAA in total defense and GT was 20th. Also consider that UF was 14th in the NCAA in total offense, UK was 24th, Troy was 16th and UH was 3rd. To me that is as impressive as it first sounds.

    We may be overrated but as I said earlier only time will tell. We were in this position not so long ago as you mentioned and we basically sh*t the bed. So who knows but to try to diminish the win streak and say all the hype isn’t deserved, I disagree.

  7. Ally

    I’d love to rip into him like a monkey on a cupcake, but until we stop letting those hillbillies get the better of us, I’ll do best to keep my mouth shut.
    But please, I beg you, revisit his post after we play in October – especially if we serve to them what they’ve ordered.

  8. Bulldog Bry

    Hype is always louder when it’s being said about about your rival. We should know.