All over but the shouting

If you dial over to Finebaum’s radio show, as I’m wont to do on occasion (it’s tough to find better sports comedy out there, to tell the truth), you’ll find that this is a fairly common sentiment expressed by the Tide Nation:

I’m beginning to get a sense of déjà vu. I’m having memories of the early Nineties, a period in SEC football history when the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Florida Gators met annually in the championship game. Both programs dominated their respective divisions, and the only question at the beginning of each season was which team would win the “big” game at the end. Now it seems that history is about to repeat itself; the Tide and the Gators are currently loaded with superior talent and speed. They are also led by two of the best coaches in the nation. I have no doubt that these two SEC “superpowers” will meet in Atlanta for the next three or four years in a row.

Actually, I may be selling this dude’s fellow travelers a bit short.  Most of them are equally convinced that after Tebow graduates, things will revert to an even earlier era, when ‘Bama under Bryant ruled almost unchallenged.

The fun part of the post is where he dismisses the rest of the conference contenders the way that most of us dismiss the mid-majors from BCS title game discussions.  Here’s what he has to say about Georgia:

… I also mentioned the Georgia Bulldogs earlier in this article. Honestly, I believe that Mark Richt is a great recruiter and a very good coach at game time. He also has a huge talent-base surrounding him. But, something is missing in Athens, and it’s called a “killer instinct”. In order to compete with relentless competitors like Meyer and Saban, Richt must push himself to the brink. By the way, he hasn’t changed anything yet. Actually if Mark doesn’t figure out how to stop others from raiding his home turf for great players, he will no longer have the problem, because he won’t be the coach.

I could quibble over that “killer instinct” remark – after all, Richt and Saban have battled each other to fairly even terms, and whatever a killer instinct is, it must have nothing to do with winning the SECCG or the Sugar Bowl, since ‘Bama didn’t pull either off last year – but I’m always curious when I see people challenge Richt to stop in state talent from crossing over the border.  Given the math, how exactly does one propose he do that?

And it’s not exactly as if Georgia’s recruiting is suffering from it (whatever “it” is) either.


UPDATE: On the flip side, Gary Danielson tells Tony Barnhart a few different things about Georgia and Alabama.

“I think Georgia is going to be the surprise of the conference. I think their quarterback play will be good enough and Mark Richt will go back to doing some of the things he likes to do-solid quarterback play, running back by committee, a defense that runs to the ball. I don’t think they can play worse defense so it is given they’ll be better on defense. They got humbled last year but that’s the way it happens sometimes. But you have to understand that they have a tough schedule so they may not win as many games. They lost the No. 1 pick in the draft (quarterback Matthew Stafford) and one of the best running backs (Knowshon Moreno) that they’ve had in a long time. But they will have a quarterback (Joe Cox) who gets the job done. He’s not a star but he’s like David Greene was when they won the championship (in 2002). They will be a much tougher out this year because of those five offensive linemen (who return).”

Can Alabama repeat in the SEC West? “I thought they were ahead of schedule last season. I know Nick (Saban) thought that. Nick is really good at identifying what his teams need to do and then taking advantage of what they have. Last year he saw what he had and made the most of it. Some things broke well for them last year. It was a down year for quarterback play in the SEC which led him to have the advantage of defense. There just weren’t a lot of people in the league who were able to take advantage of his defense. So he just dominated games with strategy and strength. They controlled the offensive line of scrimmage with two great tight ends and tackles. It was like having four tackles out there. This season things won’t be as comfortable because they lost three starters on the offensive line. But defense gives them a chance every time they play.”


Filed under Georgia Football, Nick Saban Rules, Recruiting, SEC Football, The Blogosphere

18 responses to “All over but the shouting

  1. Dave

    Funny thing is, Bama isn’t going to win the west this year. Put that Deja Vu in your pipe and smoke it.


  2. NCT

    I thought it was the Bama fans’ lack of “killer instinct” that cost them the Sugar Bowl, not any Saban deficiency.


  3. D.N. Nation

    But, something is missing in Athens, and it’s called a “killer instinct”. In order to compete with relentless competitors like Meyer and Saban

    45-16. Seemed like a pretty good headshot to me.

    Additionally, I remember one coach wimping out for a FG in OT, while the other one went for, what’s the word…the kill?


  4. digidy dawg

    I thought CMR had a winning record against Saban.


    • D.N. Nation

      Nope. 2-3. Two losses to Saban in ’03, the brutal beatdown in ’04, the OT victory in ’07, and last year’s loss.

      It’s really a wash, though. Billy Bennett makes some FGs, and it’s 3-2. And Richt did clown a bunch of Saban’s players led by Hatboy in ’05.


  5. dean

    What exactly constitutes having a “killer instinct”? Do you have to be malicious towards your opponent to have that “killer instinct”? Well if that’s the case then CMR doesn’t nor will he ever have a “killer instinct”.
    Anybody who watches CMR on Saturdays will see he has just as much fire in his belly as any coach in the country. He just doesn’t let his emotions show when dealing with fans and or the media. I’d also say if anyone who doubts CMR’s fire could watch him in practice they wouldn’t have those doubts for long.


  6. Louisiana-Monroe

    We love Nick Saban’s killer instinct!


  7. Toom

    bama is legendary for having the most delusional fan base. i still remember the call in show while leaving Tuscaloosa where one guy asked who they would face in the NC game. This following a loss to UGA.


  8. L G

    The only thing that keeps UGA fans from being as delusional as Bama fans is the annual celebration of the repeal of prohibition.


  9. JasonC

    RE: Recruiting
    If I am not mistaken Georgia is usually considered the 4th or 5th best recruiting state after Florida, California, Texas and maybe Michigan/Penn/Ohio/NY. Yes, Richt has lost some in-state recruits… a few of them to Saban, but like the Senator said, you can’t keep them all. However, if you look at the upcoming season’s commits, Richt is also stealing from Florida, which is consider a better recruiting base.


  10. Ty Webb

    Prescient? Prescient.