Poor Gators, the bye week, desperation and other thoughts: it’s going to be a weird week.

Let’s face it, these are the strangest vibes going into Jax we’ve felt at least since 2004.  And even then, it was strange only because we knew the Zooker was a dead man walking after he got Croomed.  This year we’ve got Corch riding a three-game losing streak – and a rising from the dead Mark Richt sounding… well, sympathetic:

… Richt, speaking a day after the Kentucky win, drew the parallel between Florida’s potential makeover and his own team’s. He said he expects to see some “interesting twists” from the Gators given the open date.

“I’m sure they’re doing some soul-searching and trying to find some answers, too,” Richt said. “They have time to change their course a little bit. I’m sure that’s what they’re focusing on right now.”

I don’t know if that approach is gonna work on Saturday, but it’s a helluva lot better than bitching about the weather or stealing Grambling’s uniforms.

As I mentioned in a comment, Florida’s bye week doesn’t bother me so much tactically – if Meyer and Addazio want to give Trey Burton (on the season, he’s a true freshman who’s 1-2 passing with an interception) a bigger role at quarterback, fine; that’s playing into Georgia’s strength on defense and messing with John Brantley’s head at the same time – as it does in the way that former Gator offensive coordinator Dan Mullen describes.

“Any time you have a bye week, the biggest thing is you have the opportunity to get your guys healthy and get them back on track and if you need to make some tweaks it gives you a little extra time to do that.”

Jeff Demps hasn’t been 100%.  The Gators also get Chris Rainey back (what a coincidence, hunh).  They also got the chance to rest an offensive line that’s been badly banged up.  All of that concerns me a lot more than seeing Trey Burton in the shotgun.

Another thing to consider about the Cocktail Party is that it’s an SEC East elimination game for both teams.  The loser will be saddled with its fourth conference loss.  If that’s Georgia, it’s means that the Dawgs lose the head-to-head tiebreaker to both the Gators and the Gamecocks (which, at 4-2 won’t have more than four losses at season’s end).  If Florida loses, even if it comes back with a win against South Carolina, it will still finish behind a 5-3 Georgia (yeah, right), a 5-3 South Carolina or lose the tiebreakers to South Carolina and Georgia if all finish 4-4.  With that much at stake for both, I doubt you’ll see either head coach resorting to further showy emotional appeals/fake juice to motivate their teams.

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54 Comments

Filed under Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football

54 responses to “Poor Gators, the bye week, desperation and other thoughts: it’s going to be a weird week.

  1. Interesting. I had pretty much the same thought this morning – that this game, from the standpoint of a Gator fan, has the “feeling” beforehand of those games we lost to Georgia in the last 20 years (all 3 of them). In 2004 it was, as you point out, the Ron Zook dead-man-walking game. In 2007 we were 5-2 having lost to Auburn and LSU in bad fashion, and barely beat UK the week before. And now, this year.

    I don’t like the vibe. That something still exists (albeit barely) to play for makes it worse.

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    • Mayor of Dawgtown

      Senator, I think you erred regarding SC’s possible SEC record. SC still has UT, ARK and FLA to play. SC is 3-2 at present. Losing to all 3 would put them at 3-5. However, a loss to UT seems unlikely (although UT was close to upsetting LSU). I still think ARK and FLA will beat them, though.

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  2. BCDawg97

    Sorry for the double post, but it is more appropriate here anyways.

    I would have to imagine that with the off week, Urban put his foot down and said enough of the spread (or at least a significant shift away from the philosophy). Unless they bench Brantley and start Burton, given what UGA has shown against the pass lately, I expect a big dose of passing from the Gators.

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    • Puffdawg

      Not sure I’m following you. What style of offense would they shift to, the I?

      https://blutarsky.wordpress.com/2009/07/26/urban-meyers-chickenegg-scenario/

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      • BCDawg97

        I don’t mean a whole retooling. But I think they spend 2 weeks working on the pass plays that work within their system and less of a focus with brantley running the zone read. Brantley made some pretty decent throws against miss st. Why would you not focus more on the passing game against us given our recent performance against the pass vs run?

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        • Puffdawg

          Well, for starters because Brantley is the ninth rated passer in the league with 6 TDs against 5 INTs. Secondly, if Houston doesn’t have to worry about the run he might be able to get a little pressure. I just don’t think it is as easy as you make it sound to “retool” an offense midseason. I am not saying they won’t have success against us because our secondary does scare the hell out of me at times, but I think any success they have will be more a result of our ineptitude in coverage than a retooling of their system. Just my two cents.

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    • Biggus Rickus

      I think people are making too many assumptions about the quality of their personnel. I don’t think their receivers are good enough to consistently make plays downfield. And Brantley hasn’t shown that he can consistently throw the ball accurately downfield either. It is entirely possible that their passing game isn’t very good because of their personnel and not coaching. If that’s so, trying to rely more heavily on the passing game is a terrible strategy, even against Georgia’s somewhat porous pass defense.

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  3. Brandon

    As I said before beating Florida covereth up a multitude of sins.

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  4. Macallanlover

    In Meyer’s first season he used the bye-week to change his offense to fit Leake’ style, and it workded well. He also protected a thug in another year and played him against UGA before tossing him aside after the game. Neither of those guys would have been on UGA’s team after those offenses. We all have players who act badly at times, but Florida is just different about not drawing the line.

    Things seem to go in circles in Gainesville. Regardless of who wins the football game, I would rather wear red and black than be associated with UF. I think we win the game and extend our lead in the series. It wouldn’t be a shock if we didn’t, but we look better at everything but pass defense.

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    • Biggus Rickus

      How many times does the ’05 thing need to be debunked? Meyer’s changes were NOT effective. They scored two early touchdowns and never got close again in the final 54 minutes of the game. They gained 261 yards of total offense. Joe Tereshinski being forced to play QB in that game is the ONLY reason Georgia didn’t win by 2 or 3 touchdowns.

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    • D.N. Nation

      “In Meyer’s first season he used the bye-week to change his offense to fit Leake’ style, and it workded well. ”

      If Mike Bobo retools Georgia’s offense to the extent that Meyer’s 2005 retooling “worked well” (i.e., 14 points), I’m sure the DawgVent and elsewhere will be happy with his performance, absolutely, 100%.

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    • Mike

      Ahhh..the old “Florida may beat us like rented mules, but we are much classier than them!” meme.

      Hey, one finds succor where one can, right Mr Scotch Lover?

      On another note, this is one of the rare years coming into the game where Georiga is on the upswing and Florida is not. Georiga is cna should be favored, so even as an avid Florida fan, I give UGA the pre-game favor.

      But anything can happen in this game, and strange things often do happen.

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      • Normaltown Mike

        Don’t you know that ALL people from one geographic area dress in a certain “classless” way and engage in certain “classless” behavior, while ALL people from a nearby geographic area dress in a “classy” way while engaging in “classy” behavior.

        Pardon me, I need to go stir my batch of meth while I listen to Frederic Chopin.

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        • Macallanlover

          To both “mikes”, while the game may be competitive and could go either way, the fanbase comparisons are a drop-dead lock. We can all agree that a certain percentage of the every fanbase one encounters is comprised of embarrassing, loud-mouth goobers, UF’s percentage of that type fan is several times that of any other SEC fanbase I know (I will admit to not knowing even a dozen Miss State fans, so I will limit that statement to the other 11 schools.)

          It may be the “new money/old money” syndrome because UF is relatively new to success at CFB. Many UF fans may be band-wagoners and growing into CFB during the ESPN, internet age may be the reason, but it isn’t close as a comparison…..even with TN and LSu fans thrown in. One need only be in the state of Florida near a stadium or sports bar to see the proof. While most SEC fans would have an 80/20 ratio of well-behaved fans to bad, Florida’s is closer to the reverse. Yes, there are some classy,civil UF fans so don’t pretend I ever said, or meant all for any fanbase. But the good are drug down by the majority which are loud-mouthed trash talkers (similar to NY Yankee fans). Sorry, this isn’t even a debate so go fight with someone else.

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          • Mike

            Well, I guess were are a bit new to this whole winning thing.

            After all, we had a winning record over UGA in the 50s. And in the 60s. And in the 90s. And in the 00s. That really is not a long time to have success over UGA, is it? (Yes, I am aware UGA owned Florida in the 70s and 80s)

            As for well behaved fans, here you go;

            http://blogs.ajc.com/junkyard-blawg/2009/09/17/garbage-dumping-endangers-free-tailgating/

            Compared to the “proof” you give, that is not anecdotal. Smelly and disgusting.

            Drive safe all you traveling Bulldogs. We want you to enjoy your stay in our hometown and enjoy our home stadium.

            🙂

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            • Mayor of Dawgtown

              Actually that ’50s and ’60s superiority bit you tout is somewhat of a red herring. There was a 9 year or so period in UGA football at the end of the Wally Butts regime (except for ’59 when the Dawgs won the SEC) and the early 60s–the Johnny Griffith era–where UGA did not field teams that were any good against anybody. Sort of the Dark Ages of UGA football. During that period FLA won just enough games to be a game or so ahead in the decade of the ’50s and also build a lead in the decade of the ’60s. After CVD showed up in ’64 he actually returned to dusting FLA regularly but UGA was in a 4 game hole for that decade before he even started. Thus, there was really only one period that spanned the mid-fifties to mid-sixties where the Dawgs were losing to FLA on a regular basis and it wasn’t because FLA was all that good. I see where you completely failed to mention the ’40s and earlier when FLA hardly ever won a game against UGA. That is why, even after a 17-3 run over the last 20 years, FLA is still substantially behind in the all time series. Just setting the record straight.

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        • Biggus Rickus

          You just reminded me of the greatest Onion article of all time:

          http://www.theonion.com/articles/you-will-suffer-humiliation-when-the-sports-team-f,10804/

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  5. Scorpio Jones, III

    Ain’t it interesting how, in Gainesville, history is written to favor the mind of Urban Meyer.

    Cam Newton was NOT kicked off the team. Meyer said he was fine with Newton leaving school to go to some obscure JC in Clubfoot, Oklahoma or wherever Glinn JC actually may be.

    The Meyer Obfuscation Machine, which gave us retirement, heartburn and so forth is in full cry, and his shills shall taketh up the Word.

    At least we can wait a couple weeks to deal with The Genius’ ultimate mental breakdown.

    Whoda thought I would have to work to think about Florida and not Auburn?

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  6. Scorpio Jones, III

    Florida, Florida, Florida, Florida

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  7. Let’s see – it is the week of the WLOCP, and both Florida and Georgia can still win the SEC East. In Georgia’s case their two biggest rivals (UF and GT) are struggling. In Florida’s case, they’ve already beat one key rival (UT), and still have a shot at another (FSU).

    One would think this would be a great week leading up to the game. But for, of course…

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  8. Mike

    Just a quick question. Why all the negativity about a possible Georgia (sure?) loss to a Newton led Auburn team, but no such trepidation about possibly facing Burton?

    Yes, yes, Newton has shown he can pass when needed and Burton has not. But for all of Newton’s mad running skills, his passing numbers are average at best.

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    • Biggus Rickus

      Newton’s third in the country in passing efficiency. While they don’t ask him to throw it a ton, he is effective when he does it. Also, while Burton is a good runner, he’s not in Newton’s area code.

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    • dudetheplayer

      65.2 CMP%, 13-5 TD-INT ratio, and over 1300 yards through 8 games is “average at best”?

      Take off the glasses, son.

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    • 69Dawg

      Plus if I’m not missing something Newton is Timmy with a rocket up his butt. 6’6″ 250 and fast hell he’s a passing version of HW.

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    • Will (the other one)

      Because Burton was really only good against Kentucky’s defense, and Newton was good against…well every defense.
      Also, Auburn’s center hasn’t had problems getting the ball to their QB.

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  9. Bulldog Joe

    It’s been desperation time for Georgia for over a month now.

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  10. Vious

    I am sure Richt will come up with a new excuse if we lose to UF

    He has blamed the travel, weather, and what else?

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  11. Ausdawg85

    It is unlikely corch will have done much to change things in the off week…he has to work with the tools he has (hahaha…made a funny double meaning there!). Starting a FR is a little crazy, but working him with more reps in practice is a possibility…but at the expense of Brantley who clearly needs work. I would expect to see Burton in “wild-…gator(?)” formations.

    Like CMR, he probably looked at the most deficient area of the basics and focused on that all week…much like we focused on being more physical. And that worked for us.

    Expect to see the gators with a more basic offense using Demps and a LOT of short passes over our LB’s heads to exploit our secondary (hellloooo Mr. Cuff?) and neutralize Houston’s rush. They have their season on the line, just like us, so he’s probably just going to come out with a goal of a D that stops us, and an offense that is just competent enough to hold the ball and score 21 points or so. If we are held to under 21…well, see our previous results in that category.

    If I’m right, then we need to score early, often, and never let up. I think we do beat them in a shoot-out, but not a defensive struggle.

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  12. FRED

    AUBURN GETS A NEW COACH #1 WE KEEP OUR OLD ONE #57 DAH!

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  13. Whiskeydawg

    Dear Dawg fans,
    The week has already started off weird for me. Here is a lesson for those who would go against a spouse’s team, especially when that team needs a win to stay alive in the East and you didn’t even go to the other school. My youngest sister (UGA grad) has been in an unhappy marriage for some time now and has been debating for a couple of months whether or not to leave the looser (Liberty University grad) she married. Just before the start of the game on Saturday, she remarked to him; “Georgia really needs this game. I hope we can win”. The looser, on cue, turned to her and said, “I hope Kentucky wins, what do you think about that”? Her response was, “here is what I think, I think I’m going to watch this game, and then I’m going to divorce you”. He thought she was joking; she just called me from a lawyer’s office to tell me all this. “It has been brewing for a while but this was the last straw”, she said.

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    • Slaw Dawg

      Dang! I’m already happily married (to a Long Island girl who I’ve converted into such a rabid Dawg fan she dresses our kids in R&B garb), but otherwise I’d say “send me your sister’s phone number!”

      As for the WLOCP, Dawgs win, not close, despite all the poor mouthers amongst us (of which I’ve been one myself in years past).

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      • WTF

        I can only hope that your post isn’t true. Otherwise, it’s too sad to think that a football game played any part whatsoever in a marriage ending.

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        • Scorpio Jones, III

          Oh, you would prefer adultery, criminal behavior, spousal abuse….I think the dumbass got what he shoulda done got.

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    • Doug

      Lesson #1: Nothing good comes from marrying into Liberty University.

      Lesson #2: Nothing good comes from f**king with a Georgia girl, either.

      (Tell her I said congrats and Go Dawgs.)

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    • Mike

      Are his shoes loose? Or does he drink a lot?

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