Never gets old. Ever.
Georgia Tech’s leading rusher violates team rules for the second time this season and is suspended for two games.
Which, of course, means he’ll be back for the Georgia game.
Is it even worth pondering the hue and cry we’d be hearing in certain quarters in response to… um… such convenient timing had the player in question worn red and black?
In his last three games, Blankenship is a perfect 8-8 on field goal attempts. That’s good. But there’s a curious counterpoint to that. Compare Georgia’s scoring averages in its first six games of the season with the three since Blankenship found his groove:
That’s a nine-point drop. Yeah, Florida is in the last three, but so is Kentucky. Small sample size maybe, but the question is, has Blankenship’s success led Smart (and Chaney) to be less aggressive on offense?
He’s good. The line will get better and better.
Amidst the chatter about Rodrigo Blankenship’s dad’s grumbling about the family finances in the absence of a full scholarship for his son, perhaps it’s worth considering how Blankenship would be able to capitalize commercially on his new-found image if he were anyone in America other than an NCAA student-athlete.
Keeping an eye on Sean White and Kamryn Pettway? Judging from the coaches’ comments, they’ll both see the field on Saturday. It’s just a question of how effective they’ll be.
Here’s what Rhett Lashlee said about White yesterday:
“Obviously he’s not 100 percent, but I think you saw on the touchdown pass to Darius (Slayton) last week, the ball is probably 30-35 yards in the air,” Lashlee said. “I don’t think he’s going to be limited in any capacity or we probably wouldn’t put him out there. I mean, if he full-go, 100 percent, healthy and fresh like it was the first game? Probably not. Again, not a lot of people are, but he’ll be good to go.”
“He was out there today,” offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee said. “He was dressed out. At this point I’d say he’s just day-to-day.”
It’s a more promising outlook for the 6-foot, 240-pound running back than earlier in the day, even. During Wednesday morning’s SEC coaches teleconference, coach Gus Malzahn said Pettway was unable to practice Tuesday and he was uncertain if the third-year sophomore would be able to participate in Wednesday’s session.
While Malzahn was uncertain about Pettway’s practice availability, he seemed optimistic about Pettway’s availability against Georgia even if he missed practice on Wednesday.
“It’s not that hard this time of the year,” Malzahn said. “Now earlier in the year… it would have been a challenge.”
Sounds like they’re playing but there will be some schematic issues due to their conditions.
— On the challenges of gameplanning with an injured quarterback: “We’re going to gameplan the way we think we need to and call the game the way we think we need to win it.”
— On plug-and-play perception of Auburn’s run game: “We’re doing it as a team offense… We got confidence in our guys. We’re going to go out and put them in the best chance, best position to be successful.”
Maybe that’s promising news for Georgia’s defense, except Auburn was banged up for last week’s game against Vanderbilt and still managed a robust 6.23 yards per offensive play. Vandy did hold the Tigers to a season low 62 plays, though, something that would be nice for Georgia to accomplish. The good news is that’s actually a number in the Dawgs’ wheelhouse.
Boy, this stings.
There are no proven coaches to chase in the SEC East. There’s no Saban to keep up with, just a lot of ex-Saban assistants — getting paid handsomely — whose knowledge of The Process may or may not rub off on the East.
So what’s sadder: the overall state of the division, or that Georgia isn’t competitive in the division?
UPDATE: Bill C. says it’s even worse than you think.
The worst part about this: Florida and Missouri are overrated. They’re both as high as they are because of what they did in September. Perhaps Tennessee, too. A weighted average would be unkind to all three…
He goes on to say that a weighted average might make Kentucky, South Carolina and Vanderbilt look a little better, though.
Funny how one team isn’t mentioned there as up or down as the season’s progressed. Consistency is the hobgoblin of mediocre SEC East programs located in Athens, Georgia.