First off, start with this post of Paul’s about Georgia’s actual track record on this series. It’s hard for me to argue with his conclusion.
… In my opinion, it really doesn’t matter how well the Chickens play. If Georgia plays well, we’re going to win this game going away. The two games that we’ve lost in Columbia since conference expansion were 1996 and 2000. In those two games, Georgia surrendered 10 total turnovers.
Other games have been slowed by incredibly poorly timed mental miscues such as:
2002 – Tyson Browning fumbles in the South Carolina red zone on his first career carry.
2004 – UGA surrenders a safety and David Greene throws a pick six early.
2006 – Three INTs by Matthew Stafford keep the score from being even more out of hand than the 18-0 scoreboard indicated.
Protect the ball, play focused, and Dawgs win big. Screw around with these jokers, and it’s a sure fire headache.
Add to that McKinley’s injury status…
South Carolina’s Kenny McKinley didn’t practice Monday night, and there wasn’t much hope bouncing around about the senior receiver playing Saturday against No. 2 Georgia.
“No, we didn’t expect him to do anything,” coach Steve Spurrier said. “If he makes any progress, it’ll be later in the week.”
McKinley pulled his right hamstring early in Thursday’s loss at Vanderbilt and didn’t return. McKinley said he was hit from behind on a crossing route and his leg “whipped up and I couldn’t hardly walk.”
Spurrier’s circling of the wagons with the media…
For a variety of reasons, Spurrier is using his veto power this week when it comes to interview requests. A slew of assistant coaches and players weren’t made available by Spurrier on Monday night.
Among the assistants: Receivers coach and play-caller Steve Spurrier Jr. , offensive line coach John Hunt and special teams and tight ends coach Ray Rychleski.
The players: Quarterback Tommy Beecher, receiver Barnes and running back Brian Maddox.
“Well, sometimes we don’t put players on the list because they don’t want to talk to you guys,” Spurrier said. “A lot of times you want to talk to guys that aren’t playing. Nothing good can come out of talking to guys that aren’t playing. … We don’t just open up everybody to the media.”
Spurrier was asked if the assistants didn’t wish to talk. He said yes.
and the uncertainty at quarterback…
Spurrier said both Beecher and Chris Smelley are both “scheduled” to play against Georgia. A starter hasn’t been named.
and it strikes me that you’ve got a team that’s going to have a difficult time recovering, both mentally and in terms of offensive ability, if it gets down early to a quality opponent. The trick here is for Georgia not to take anything for granted.