Upon further review: SECCG, 1st quarter

I finally got up the nerve this past weekend to being watching the replay of the conference title game.  But I’m taking it in small, easy to chew sized bites.  A few random observations from the broadcast:

  • Yes, it was a physical fifteen minutes.  It wasn’t in the same ball park as the first quarter of this year’s Georgia-Florida game, though.  It just wasn’t.  Hatred, ftw!
  • Even early on, huge difference between the Alabama offensive line’s pass protection and its run blocking.  This was a situation where offensive balance wasn’t such a good thing.  Unfortunately, the Tide staff came to realize that, too.
  • Tons of attention paid to Jarvis Jones.  On the sack that led to Alabama’s first turnover, he was relentless, fighting off two blockers and then pouncing on McCarron.
  • And that turnover led to a huge wasted opportunity by Georgia.  Georgia’s offensive line was having its share of difficulties in pass protection, too.
  • Danielson sure was quick to judge the success of the ‘Bama fake punt call that was wiped out by the delay of game penalty.  I’m not as certain, simply because it looked like some of Georgia’s defenders relaxed when they heard the whistle.  But what did it say that Saban felt the need to try that so early in the game?
  • Great, great run by Gurley to pick up the first down on that second-and-12 play on the last drive of the quarter.  He looks like what an SEC back should look like.
  • And Murray kicked it in, too, with a gorgeous throw to King that moved the ball into Alabama territory.  That was the first moment I felt this year’s Georgia offense wasn’t going to wilt like it did in the 2011 SECCG.

More to come…

70 Comments

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70 responses to “Upon further review: SECCG, 1st quarter

  1. Normaltown Mike

    The drive after the fumble in the 1st quarter is painful in retrospect. Ball on the 28 on 3rd down and CMB has AM in a 5 step drop (where he gets dropped for a sack). Predictably, the FG is wide.

    Shoulda coulda woulda.

    • Merk

      yeap..clearly Bobo’s fault

      Lets not mention the fact that 2 penalties killed that drive. Bobo is such an ass getting calling plays the cause penalties.

      • Normaltown Mike

        So the two penalties BEFORE the first down toss of 12 yards to the 28 was the reason AM got sacked on 3rd and long? That’s what killed the drive?

        Fascinating.

  2. Go Dawgs!

    It’s sitting on my DVR. Just waiting on me. I’ll probably never watch it.

    • Gravidy

      It’s sitting on my DVR too, although I will watch it… you know, some day.

      • stoopnagle

        Yeah, me too.

        I did, though, get through a quarter and a half of the B1G CG before I feel asleep.

      • HobnailedBoots

        I watched it. One of the few losses where I can watch it and still feel proud.

        • NRBQ

          I tried to watch it live – it was just too nerve-wracking. I was so nervous I couldn’t sit through the commercials. I left the dvr running, went out and raked leaves for an hour or so.

          • gastr1

            I’ve watched the last minute of the game over and over. Like looking at a letter from someone you really loved that dumped you…can’t get it out of your head.

            • MT Dawg

              That’s exactly how I feel.

            • The Lone Stranger

              And what do you feel about a spike of the ball after the nice long seam pass to T.K. at the 20 yd. line? Or does allowing Bama time to set negate the ensuing effective toss to Lynch? I still maintain that a spike there saves 10 seconds that would have been nice in the pocket down inside the 10 yl.

              • gastr1

                I can see it either way, to be honest. Mostly what I see is a lot of “ifs”…”if” Gurley had stepped another step out to block Mosley, “if” Mosley had gotten more of his hand on the ball, “if” Conley had put his hand down to balance himself and get out of bounds, “if” Lynch had carried that guy into the end zone on the play before…

                • CitadelDawg

                  Lynch had already carried that guy a long way. But yes, a lot of if’s. Instead, just trying to remember it was a fantastic football game, with an ending fit for a tragedy.

      • rugbydawg79

        it is sitting on my dvr as well—I will probably never watch–but can’t find it in my heart to erase just yet

    • Jeff Sanchez

      Same here. I keep up an internal debate…

    • Silver Creek Dawg

      I haven’t had the nerve to watch it yet.

  3. AusDawg85

    Only have made it through the first have. Some very interesting foreshadowing…

    Murray has a passed tipped. Bama punt returner fearlessly snatches a bouncing ball from going further. Although the first one was near the sideline and headed out anyway, his grab in the second half saved Bama 15 – 20 yards of roll and kept them in great field position. We are the better team in the 1st half, but can’t score. You can tell we WANT McCarron to have to throw…except to #9. Conley has some issues receiving. Nick Saban NEVER fakes a punt, and shocked he was not going for it, so it was pretty damn obvious he was going to go for the fake, but we were in “punt safe” I believe. Hard to tell if it would have worked or not…somebody would have had to make a tough tackle. Gurley’s a beast, but not sure why Bobo went to him nearly exclusively rather than stay with the mix and use Marshall’s speed on the outside…you know, to maintain “balance”…only part of the game plan I really did not agree with from the outset. And finally, what ever happened to Brandon Smith? Is Swann really better?

  4. wnc dawg

    Saban has a tendency to fake kicks early in big games- and have bad results. He’s done it against TX, LSU, and now UGA. But I guess he’ll keep trying.

    And agreed, Mike, that 3rd down call after the turnover just killed me at the time. It was one of my few complaints on the night.

    • Bryant Denny

      True – but the calls are sometimes – as in the BCS game against Texas – reads.

      There was also a fake FG for a TD early against Arkansas last week and a successful fake FG against LSU in the title game last year.

  5. Ginny

    I have zero desire to ever watch that game again. Ever.

  6. Ben

    My stomach is in knots just thinking about reading your recaps.

  7. AthensHomerDawg

    Too soon……..

    • papadawg

      It will always be too soon….

      • Rusty

        Yes it will always be too soon for me, and that is unfortunate. Even with the mistakes made (by both sides, not just Georgia) it was obviously a classic. And the better team won…It just did. I love the Dawgs no less because of it.

  8. Hank

    Ran into a guy while getting a biscuit at a convenience store near Athens on Saturday morning on the way to the game. He said his wife was a nurse and spent Friday night treating Jarvis with the flu.

    • NRBQ

      I was told that by a friend who works in the UGA clinic. Personally, I don’t think he’s been really healthy since mid-season. His play declined as this game progressed.

      • Debby Balcer

        The flu is going around but those health workers are violating HIPA.

        • rusty

          I find that to be a pretty common occurance. Sad but true.

        • NRBQ

          FWIW, my friend is not a health-care worker.

          She’s privy to what’s going on, however (she let me know the guys were all passing their drug-tests during the season – whew!).

          • Debby Balcer

            You don’ t have to be a healthcare worker to violate HIPA if you work or volunteer in the clinic and share knowledge you are violating HIPA.

            • Well, Debby, I shore hope they don’t haul her ass off to prison for revealing someone had the flu nearly two weeks ago.

              • Debby Balcer

                It may not seem important to you but a person’ s medical info deserves to be protected. If Jarvis wanted that shared he would share it. Would you want your medical info shared?

                • Would I care if someone knew I had the flu? No.

                  Debby, my medical history is long and storied. Literally hundreds of doctors, nurses, techs and emergency personel know I was in ICU 15 times in 2011 alone. I’m sure ALL health insurers know it, along with the PPO that I, fortunately, belong to.

                  I understand you on principal, that all info should be confidential, but we live in the real world, and what you may consider the grave breach of ethics in this case is to me, trivial. After all, everybody who’s interested knows Jarvis had a career-threatening neck injury.

                  • Debby Balcer

                    But if a total stranger came up and talked to you about what you had experienced because someone told him I am sure you would not be happy. We know about Jarvis’ s neck because he shared it. The medical people who know your health history should not gossip about it.

                    • gastr1

                      He had no choice but to share it if he wished to keep playing. It’s a reality for high-profile athletes that their sports-related health situations are broadcast all over the media. That’s probably a big reason why the parties involved are sharing…because it’s most often ending up on ESPN anyway.

                • DawgWalker07

                  I’m pretty sure it came out after the game that he had the flu, so yes he did share it.

    • The Lone Stranger

      Just a little lagniappe of that old reliable Bulldog fortune!

  9. Bryant Denny

    One of the paid writers on the Alabama 247 site (BOL) wrote some about the game again today…said one of his buddies is a former UGA linebacker and the LB couldn’t get over how y’all never made any specific adjustments for our run game, especially late. Not sure if he’s accurate, but if so, it’s interesting to ponder.

    • Derek

      The last three drives for bama included two punts and a bomb for a TD. The adjustments were there which was why swann was on an island for the TD.

      I find bama’s 1-5 record vs. ND interesting.

    • HobnailedBoots

      Both defenses were clearly worn down in the 4th quarter. Advantage was Bama’s O-line, who was able to take better advantage of it than ours was.

    • Grantham brought one of the safeties down for run support starting in the fourth quarter and then sold out even harder against the run later in the quarter.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        Exactly. Saban said on his TV show that was what the Tide O coaches were looking for and the reason their long TD pass was successful.

      • Bryant Denny

        I re-read the post over at BOL and the talk was the lack of “slanting or firing linebackers and/or defensive backs” – i.e. creating stationary targets for for the Bama OL and TEs.

        • Krautdawg

          If I recall correctly, Grantham admitted that our LBs were having difficulty getting into their run fits in the 2nd half. Don’t know if this is the technique we were missing and/or not executing correctly. It would definitely have been the first time we needed to use it since the Florida game.

  10. If they can turn the Hobbit into 3 movies, just imagine what they will do with playoffs

    In a game this close, hindsight isn’t 20/20. It’s a cruel microscope.

    • fetch

      In fairness, it’s not just the Hobbit, they are adding material from The Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales, The History of Middle-earth, and unpublished manuscripts to add background to the story.

      • NRBQ

        All of which is practically unreadable, even by a dedicated fan of The Hobbit and the Trilogy.

        • Always Someone Else's Fault

          Sounds like the football version of 2/3 of the games in the NFL playoffs last year.

        • fetch

          I agree. But some of it is used to tell where Gandalf goes when he leaves the company, a more detailed history of the origins of the rings, and a lesson in Dwarf history and the Lonely Mountain, as well as the rift between peoples that must be overcome during the battle of five armies. A lot was left out of the LOTR trilogy that upset longtime fans (not the least of which was the whole Tom Bombadil adventure), I think Jackson is trying to get this one right.

    • The Lone Stranger

      Frodo Lives! (and Bilbo for these purposes)

  11. Mike Cooley

    The talk about lack of adjustments on Grantham’s part is both funny and annoying. He did adjust. Without those adjustments, we never get the bal back for that last heart wrenching drive to a victory that almost was. All Alabama needed was one first down and the game would have been over. With Alabama’s O line, there’s a reason they couldn’t muster that crucial first down to ice the game. The reason is because the adjustments were made.

  12. Uglydawg

    What do you make of Marshall? While Gurley seems to be a strong runner that likes to run through contact when it comes to him, Marshall seems to (and I don’t want to say this wrong) avoid contact, even to the point of going to the ground to avoid it. I think Gurley has lived up to his potential and more than lived up to the hype surrounding him as a UGA back…Marshall has shown flashes of amazing talent, but I think he has a ways to go before he is at the level he seems to be capable of.
    Have I worded that gently enough to not sound like I’m critcizing a freshman running back, who HAS contributed very much to the program already? We can all be excited about the next two years…watching Gurshall plus the other talents we haven’t even seen on the field yet..

    • Silver Creek Dawg

      Keep in mind Marshall is not close to Gurley’s size. He’s 3 inches shorter and 15 pounds lighter.

      Getting him in space is what will be the key to his success in Athens.

    • gastr1

      There’s no doubt that in addition to being smaller, Marshall does not have Gurley’s lower-body strength or his power-running technique. If Marshall can learn to deliver the hit, keep his feet moving, and stay low so he is always falling forward, he will be able to compensate for not being quite as big as Gurley.

      • Uglydawg

        Those are actually my thoughts too. Marshall will just get better but Gurley’s already there. Absolutley two different styles and approaches. What prompted my remarks was the way Marshall was kind of pulled back as the game went along, and Gurley was carrying the whole shebang..which was kind of the game plan, but I’d think not to the degree it developed.

        • CitadelDawg

          I don’t see Marshall refusing contact. I see him run into the teeth of the defense when 1) he’s got the wheels for getting outside and 2) he lacks Gurley’s fantastic vision and fantastic lower-body strength for winding through and grinding over the guys in the melee. Marshall lays licks and goes down and gets a couple yards per carry. I’d need someone to point me to a few plays where he lays down. I just wish they’d get him out more, half or more of his carries, on tosses or following pulling guards.

        • gastr1

          It was the gameplan to play Gurley almost exclusively according to Bobo via Verne & Gary. Bobo wanted Gurley’s power and wasn’t worried about varying that, apparently.

    • NRBQ

      “Timid” comes to mind on some of Marshall’s runs.

      He reminds me of M. Turner, who does have the prototypical build to run with power. In reality, he needs a huge hole to get started. Time after excruciating time, he takes baby steps into the line, actually slowing down, where he is tackled with ease. He’s fun to watch in the defense’s backfield, but seldom gets there anymore.

      (sorry for the OT rant. Just tired of seeing Turner run for two ypc week in and week out)

  13. Will Trane

    Execution, sometimes it is timing and such a little thing. The 4th quarter Bama TD pass almost did not get of the ground. Grantham made the adjustments, and the Dawg’s NG beat Bama’s center…came very close to clawing the QB. But that is how plays go.
    Hard to for Dawgs D to make adjustment on the fly in the 3rd quarter when Bama held the ball. There is where your offense has to come into play. Do not know the number of snaps the Dawgs’ O had in the 3rd but do not think it came close to Bama. Seems like it was all three and outs.
    Game is history. Time to see mistakes, correct them, and move on. Time to look at next years schedule, what those teams in the East have coming back, how the Dawgs match up, depth, and trying to find out if “3 is the charm”.
    But not so fast, better get ready to stall the corn head on the Husker’s combine.

  14. Cojones

    What will any of the fans do when we play Neb and they gash up the middle on the running game? Remember how we got that solved as the season progressed? Please tell me because I didn’t see evidence of it in our D scheme. The players played as told and did damned fine, but the groud stop never came all season except after a couple of halftime changes in two games. What was Grantham’s excuse this time? It wasn’t stopped in the MSU and LSU games last year.

    This game was on Grantham’s back or is every one just blind to the elephant in our backfield?