Some Belk Bowl thoughts

Usually, it’s a sad day for me when another Georgia football season wraps up… and that’s the case for today, except that my sadness is tempered by a bit of fatigue from all the drama and whining we’ve been subjected to, especially after the Tech loss.  (Not that I expect any of that to fade away afterwards.)

Anyway, on to a little pregame discussion, minus the personalities.  Here’s what the key advanced stats from Bill and Brian tell us about Georgia and Louisville:

Advanced Stats Georgia Louisville
F+ Overall 7th (27.6%) 16th (19.9%)
F+ Offense 8th (14.4%) 42nd (4.2%)
F+ Defense 22nd (10%) 5th (16.1%)
F+ Special Teams 11 (3.2%) 88th (-0.9%)

Damned shame Isaiah McKenzie’s suspended, no?

Team Speed Kills lists five key things to watch:  (1) Louisville’s quarterback situation; (2) Georgia’s offense vs. Louisville’s defense; (3) turnovers; (4) special teams; and (5) Louisville’s offensive line.  That’s a good list.  Let me go into number two a little bit more.

Take a look at Louisville’s run defense game log.  Then take a look at Georgia’s running game log.  I don’t think you have to be a genius to see that something’s gotta give there.  The Louisville defense only allowed one opponent to rush for more than five yards a carry; Georgia cleared that hurdle in all but three games this season.  If Georgia can’t run the ball, that’s going to force the offense into a place it would prefer not to go, given Louisville’s penchant for snatching interceptions at a ridiculous rate.

As far as Georgia’s pass rush goes, Louisville was pretty awful on the sacks allowed front.  Its 36 was next to last in the ACC.  (By comparison, Georgia only allowed 15 this season.)  True, Leonard Floyd is out, but Lorenzo Carter appears to be a more than capable replacement – and besides, Georgia figures to be in a 4-2-5 set up for much of the game, meaning that Pruitt would either be using Floyd in the Star position, or not having Floyd or Carter on the field all the time.

With that in mind, my most underrated aspect to the game is Damian Swann, who figures to go out playing at the position he’s best suited for.  Most overrated?  Intangibles.  Yes, the more motivated team generally wins games like the Belk Bowl.  But – 10 wins, Grantham, Bobo gone, Petrino, erasing the bad taste of the Tech loss, pissing matches with athletic directors – who the hell knows what’s going to motivate the two teams today?

Just relax, have fun today and play your game, fellas.  Give us something to enjoy until G-Day.


Filed under Georgia Football

18 responses to “Some Belk Bowl thoughts

  1. JAX

    This is what will happen — Grantham will have his defense ready for a Bobo-less UGA offense and will dominate the game. Our offense will never find its footing or gain a tad of confidence. It would be such a Georgia/Richt type of outcome. 2012 Sugar Bowl Lville vs. Florida redux.


  2. I get your fatigue. You kept us dailed in and on top of every story this season. Thank you for all of the great posts! As for me, the Florida loss was a huge sucker punch that knocked the wind out of the 2014 season. The bowl game is meaningless beyond the curiosity factor. A win will not make this a better season, just as a loss will not make things worse. I am ready for 2015.


  3. Jack Klompus

    Go Dawgs.


  4. Trbodawg

    Not to thread Jack or anything. But does anyone have a favorite place in Portland, OR to watch the game?


  5. SouthGaDawg

    Today bothers me because it seems to be a “no win situation.” If UGA wins, then is there any real momentum gained? I do want to see Petrino and CTG get their @sses kicked. If UGA loses, then the TV/radio pundits (and fans) will cry, “There Georgia goes again…can’t win the big game or a bowl game…the paper tigers of the SEC.” Let’s go Dawgs….GATA!


    • I feel the same — but I also view it as Mason’s defining moment, as in how does he handle himself (and the team) in his final game without Bobo. If Chubb is churning as he can Mason can do some damage but if LVille grinds down the Dawgs rush game we have to hope HM can replicate GT ’13.


  6. Bulldawg165

    I don’t think I’ve ever been less interested in a Georgia football game than I am in this one. This is a meaningless bowl game against a meaningless opponent where we have the opportunity to prove nothing.


  7. GaskillDawg

    I wonder how many people who post that they do not care about the game will be bitching about the game once it is over.


  8. dlm80

    Isaiah McKenzie’s suspended…? what happened & how did I miss it?


  9. Russ

    I hope the players don’t read the comments on the internet. I’d love to see us whip up on Louisville, a la Arkansas, Missouri, Clemson or Auburn.