Why the 2018 title game wasn’t like the 2012 SECCG

I know it’s tempting to wallow in a “Georgia’s come up short against Alabama in the big one again” mindset after Monday night’s disappointing loss, but my advice to anyone going down that path is to think again.  Smart and his team did one thing I haven’t seen happen in a damned long time:  they played Alabama on Alabama’s terms and forced the Tide to be the team that had to make the in-game adjustments.

Two years ago, when Saban called an onside kick in the fourth quarter of the title game, it blew people’s minds. But it was a calculated risk — the coaches saw a potential weakness and attempted to exploit it. Removing Hurts from the game and putting in freshman backup Tua Tagovailoa required a whole different kind of leap of faith.

Perhaps the most impressive thing about Tagovailoa’s title-winning comeback performance was that he so frequently looked like a little-used true freshman…

This was the roller coaster that Saban has spent most of his coaching life trying to avoid.

The move worked, and Saban deserves all the credit in the world for trusting his gut instincts.  Consider, though, that Smart forced Saban into a place he’s worked his entire career to avoid going.  In my mind, that’s a big deal.

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78 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Nick Saban Rules, Strategery And Mechanics

78 responses to “Why the 2018 title game wasn’t like the 2012 SECCG

  1. We didn’t win the game, but we also didn’t blink. For all of those talking heads that say, “You can’t out-Alabama Alabama,” Monday night proved you can with the right amount of talent. We didn’t come up short … they made one more play.

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  2. Tim in Sav

    I thought the same thing myself Senator, I told a friend that even though we lost the game, Saban blinked, and as you said, he deserves all the credit but I think we as Bulldog fans can look forward to many fun seasons to come.

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  3. Timphd

    Will Leitch over at Sports on Earth summarizes my feelings exactly. This was NOT 2012. Our guys made Saban make the adjustments that he never likes to make. The future is bright my friends.

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  4. atlasshrugged55

    I’m sorry, but a loss is a loss. This rationalization that we made Saban go to a place he tries to avoid is akin to participation trophies. We lost, they won & until we win nothing has changed.

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    • Well, I guess we’re doomed until eternity, then.

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      • Greg

        it feels like an eternity already. I was 16 the last time we won a national title and we only won that one because we had the greatest player in CFB history. Almost 40 years later, I still wonder if I’ll see another one before I die. Taking it a step further, I think back to all the time spent supporting a team that rarely wins conference titles, much less national titles. Yeah, I guess that is being a fair weather fan, but isn’t sports supposed to be an escape, not a soul crushing experience? For all of our excuses from the game just played, our guys couldn’t make one of about a half dozen plays that would have closed it out and the national
        championship drought still
        weighs heavily on all of us. F’n GT has won a national title a decade more recently than us. Embarrassing.

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    • Oh, good grief. I don’t think anyone is claiming a moral victory. What people are saying is that Georgia can compete with Alabama … something we weren’t saying in the rain storm in 2015.

      Liked by 1 person

      • atlasshrugged55

        I don’t want to compete w/ Bama, I want to beat them & everyone else. Plain & simple. Whether we’re more competitive than we were in 2015 doesn’t matter, the end result is still the same.

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        • Full Cup

          It must be nice to live your tidy, black and white world.

          Liked by 1 person

        • I don’t want to compete w/ Bama, I want to beat them & everyone else. Plain & simple. Whether we’re more competitive than we were in 2015 doesn’t matter, the end result is still the same.

          Years of mediocrity and suddenly a switch gets flipped and you beat everyone — how does that work, exactly?

          Color me unreasonable for accepting that improvement is a gradual process.

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      • dawgman3000

        Exactly. Remember, it was this kind of showing that we were hoping for in Atl before the season began. We expected it to be for the SEC, but it turned out to be for the natty. That Kirby fella can coach a little bit IMO.

        Liked by 1 person

        • This is what I have to keep telling my smashed heart. The only fair way to judge the season is to look at it compared to our own, genuine pre-season expectations.

          We are champions of the best conference in the land and champions of the oldest and most prestigious bowl game.

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      • TMC DAWG

        And when you can compete with Bama your prettydamn good!

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    • dawgtired

      I honestly understand your pain and I want to win it all as much as anyone but that is a sad mentality. All the lamenting we heard about Goff then Donnan then CMR from 2006 forward and now with Kirby. Those coaches bridged our program from one era to the next. Each were DGDs that bridged us from Dooley to Kirby and Kirby will take us through the next era. If we can only be happy winning it all then we will just be sad people most years.

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    • Butler T. Reynolds

      I bet you’re fun at parties. 😛

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  5. dawgtired

    This was the roller coaster that Saban has spent most of his coaching life trying to avoid.

    It pisses me off he got away with his gamble. We had them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tim in Sav

      Let me ask some of you “doom and gloomers” a rhetorical question. Is someone could guarantee the same results next year i.e. 13-2 and an overtime loss in the Nat’l championship game, would you take it? I know I damn sure would.

      Liked by 1 person

      • dawgtired

        I’ll take it. I wasn’t being ‘doom and gloom’. I’m just hate that Saban got away with a lucky gamble. He should have been caught with his pants down.

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        • dawgtired

          P.S. I’m happy with the season. I’m never happy with a loss, but I’m good with what we’ve done. I have a lot of great games to what in the off season.

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        • When you’ve accumulated more talent than any other college football program, gambles like that can pay off.

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          • Former Fan

            Why was it a gamble? It was pretty clear he would lose the game with the starting QB. He wasn’t gambling to lose. He was gambling to win. If he doesn’t do anything, he loses. I don’t see much difference in the onsides kick in 2012 and this one. Either way, without something changing, Saban loses the game. Going with the freshman, when you 1st string QB can’t win, is a no brainer if the kid is the only hope you got of passing the ball and passing the ball is required to win.

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            • dawgtired

              Ok, so I shouldn’t say ‘gamble’, but we forced Saban into his second choice. He obviously went with Hurts to start because he thought that was his best chance to win. We forced an alternative, which means Saban’s first decision wasn’t good enough to beat us. The freshman showed at times he had the potential to make bad decisions so he could have made just one or two more that sealed it for us. It just didn’t happen and I wish it had. I’m not lamenting. Just stating my rather. I wish Saban’s second decision would have still cost him the game, that’s all.

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            • He wasn’t gambling to lose.

              That never occurred to me. Profound.

              As for the onsides kick, Bill’s point is that was a call made within Saban’s comfort zone. If you think thrusting a true freshman quarterback into a national championship game was just another decision, more power to you, brother.

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              • Former Fan

                IMO, it was a perfectly logical change with little downside risk. That is what I am saying. The move didn’t make it more likely he would lose. It made it more likely he would win. That’s what I meant by “he didn’t gamble to lose”. His risk was next to nothing other than media and fan blowback (to some, that is a big risk but to Saban, losing is a bigger drawback). The risk reward in this situation was very reasonable. He was going to lose with his first string QB in there.

                2012 onside kick shows Saban will take very good risks to win the game. Some calling gambling. I call it great coaching.

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                • I’m not questioning Saban’s coaching ability. Quite the contrary. But if this was such an obvious, easy move on his part, why has he never taken a chance like that before in critical situations?

                  I’ve seen enough Alabama football over the years to recognize that the feeling in the stadium at the half was very unusual. That’s to Kirby’s credit. ‘Bama overcoming that feeling is to Saban’s.

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                  • merk

                    You cant reason with them. Seriously, even if that true freshman was Tom Brady or Dan Marino, no head coach is going to be jumping with happiness that they have reached a point to need to put them in vs a team that just made a kid with a 25-2 record look like a kid with a 2-25 record.

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                  • Former Fan

                    I agree with that sentiment that it was different. Kirby forced the change. I just have a hard time saying it was out of character for Saban to take a risk to win the ball game. IMO, that is what separates him from everyone else. He takes risks that others will not take. If you know you are going to lose, and the backup QB gives you a shot at winning, you make the change. Other coaches have done it through the years, but it didn’t work out for them. (Granted, they haven’t done it in a national title game.) IMO, its not odd to see a QB replaced in game. Its just odd that Saban had to do it. And he had to do it or he was going to lose. He knew that. Give Kirby credit for forcing the issue.

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                • The only reason it didn’t have downside risk is that he has already won that fanbase 4 natties. If he was searching for Natty #1 and that blows up in his face, it’s Faton Bauta all over again.

                  Liked by 1 person

      • Erk's Forehead

        Only with an SEC title. I have no desire to play for the natty without an SEC crown.

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      • PTC DAWG

        I would have to pass. Cause if we get back, we’re gonna win it all. No limitations.

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  6. 81Dog

    What will make it different isn’t how we lost. It will be what happens after the loss.

    I don’t GARA what dark place Nick went to in order to pull out a win. Show me the dark place we force him when UGA gets the win. I have faith we can do that, but this one hurts just like 2012 did.

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  7. Tim in Sav

    One other thing I’d like to add that gives me much hope for the future. Unlike many of our rivals, I think we have found the Coach we need to make this program into a force to be reckoned with. And he is a Georgia alumnus as IS his Wife Mary Beth. They bleed red and black and I don’t think they are going anywhere. Kirby smart is not going to leave Georgia over chasing a few dollars in my opinion. Our rivals can’t say that.

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  8. Gaskilldawg

    I am disappointed we did not win, but the result has zero affect on my appreciation for what we DID accomplish. Unlike 2012 we are SEC Champions, we are Rose Bowl champions, we are State Governor’s Cup champions, we won the Okeefanokee Oar (I know, I know) by five touchdowns, we inflicted the worst loss ever on Tennessee at Watkins-Sheilds Field, and we won at Notre Dame.

    If I cannot find joy in all of that then the failure to be happy is on me, not on the team.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Former Fan

    Saban was coaching to win. He realized that he would lose unless he could open up the passing game. He went with the QB that gave him the best chance of winning. He wanted to win more than he was afraid to lose.

    Our coaching in the 2nd half seemed more afraid to lose. The first half was done with the mind set of we want to win and this is what it will take. Give Saban credit. Our coaches did great in the 1st half. But it sure looked like we were playing not to lose in the 2nd half and Bama is too talented a team to do that with a 13 point lead.

    Saban played to win in 2012 too. IMO, that is one of the things that sets him apart. He will take a risk in order to win the game. He plays to win.

    Liked by 1 person

    • paul

      I agree. It seemed like our philosophy changed dramatically in the second half. We abandoned using the pass to set up the run and we didn’t even give the ball to our most effective back, Sony, when we did run. The second half play calling was way too conservative. When you play not to lose you almost always lose. You could feel that loss coming in the third quarter while we were still leading. That’s what bothers me the most.

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      • Former Fan

        Agree with you there. To UGA coaching staff credit, we coached to win in the 1st half. That forced Saban’s hand. Something to be said for that too.

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      • I agree with all of yall but, in the coaching staff’s defense, the formula of hitting them from all directions for 2.5 quarters and then pounding them into the ground has been pretty effective. I suppose I can quibble with the fact that we should have expected, with Alabama’s depth, that hitting them from all sides was going to have to be a 4 quarter affair.

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      • mp

        I really want to blame the terrible Fromm pick off the lineman’s helmet that swung some momentum back to UA. I looked back at the play log, and that was the last 1st down pass attempt until the last offensive drive when there was only 3 minutes left. Not sure it was directly attributable, but might have put some fear in the coaches.

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    • Rocketdawg

      Winnng 5 (now 6) National Champioships will give you that kind of leeway. If Monday night had been the first time Bama made it to the championship game like it was for us do you see him making the switch? Better yet if he makes the switch and it blows up in his face does he have the political capital to withstand the criticism afterward?

      If Tua has come in the game and thrown a pick six and then fumbled or made some other bonehead play that effectively ended Bama’s chances to win the Gumps would be pissed that they lost since they consider a National Championship a birthright. He might have received a little heat from the Alabama media but the narrative would have been us winning our first championship in 37 years. Flip the script and have Kirby go to Eason in the second half. He is crucified by the media for switching QB’s and you get the inevitable “panic against Alabama”, “Georgia can’t win the big one”, etc.

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    • D.N. Nation

      “Saban played to win in 2012 too.”

      In 2012, Saban botched his timeouts at the end of the first half, was the victim of a fake punt, had a kick blocked and returned for a TD, was unable to stop a 19-year-old running back when everyone knew he was getting the ball, and had his defense completely flat-footed on Georgia’s last drive.

      Then one guy tipped the ball.

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  10. Aladawg

    Though I feel the future is truly bright , the result is the same. We were in a similar place in the second year of the last era as well. I believe we will do better, but only the future will tell that. Right now it’s the same result. Just like 2012. And Saban is still undefeated against his students.

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  11. kfoge

    The question I keep coming back too is why we didn’t pressure Tua? He was a true freshman in the biggest game of the year. We didn’t pressure Baker Mayfield in the first half of the Rose Bowl and he torched us. Even though he was terrific against the blitz all year we brought pressure in the second half and sacked him and held their O to 7 points. Kirby pregame pressers said he wanted to play with no regrets, etc…… yet we didn’t bring heat on Tua. For those who will counter with running ability of Tua, Baker was touted as the best at moving around in the pocket and even taking off, yet we still did it. That’s what I keep coming back too. I’ll be moving on to next year soon enough 🙂

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    • Normaltown Mike

      I haven’t had the stomach to watch, but I wish we had Roquon on a delayed blitz every time Tua was passing for the reason you identify. Make this kid make a mistake. Letting him sit in a clean pocket and relying upon our below average DB’s was a formula for failure.

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    • The question I keep coming back too is why we didn’t pressure Tua?

      He took a sack on the next to the last play of the game. The pick he threw was largely the result of reacting poorly to the pass rush.

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      • Former Fan

        That’s true Senator. But the point kfoge is making is a good one. If you are DC, and you’re facing a kid that hasn’t taken any meaningful snaps, and he’s a true freshman, you bring the house on obvious passing downs. You blitz him like crazy and force him to beat the blitz. Tua looked like a true freshman at times. But man, he sure threw a pretty ball. I thought we had them till our freshman QB threw a freshman pass right after Tua’s INT. Sigh. Oh the joy and angst of watching very talented freshman QBs!

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      • kfoge

        That’s 2 plays out of an entire half. They scored on 4 possessions in the second half, we weren’t stopping them……if our base D was not stopping, don;t you at least try something different? Same mentality I have towards Chaney never calling a traditional screen pass. If it doesn’t work, than fine you tried it. What’s the worst that could happen? You get zero yards? Well, that would be the same result of running Chubb behind the center right into Payne’s arms.

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  12. BA Baracus

    The difference between 2017 & 2012 is that if we’re honest, that 2012 game was a mirage. The only place we were even close to Bama in that game was the scoreboard. It took a minor miracle (actually 3 minor miracles) for us to have a chance to win. We had 3 gigantic, game-changing plays go our way — essentially amounting to a 24 point swing in our favor — and it still wasn’t enough:

    The successful fake punt that led directly to our 1st TD
    The INT in the endzone that kept 7 points off the board for Bama
    The FG block / TD return that was a 10 point swing in our favor

    In an evenly-matched game, any one of those plays greatly increases your odds of winning. We had all 3 go our way and still came up short, because in reality, Bama was probably about 4 TDs better than us.

    They ran for like 350-ish yards on us. We were completely out-classed on the LOS. If we’re being honest, that game could just as easily have been 42-14 as it could have been a DAWG win.

    Monday night was not that. We were not lucky to be in that game. We were every bit as good as they were, they just made 1 more play than we did.

    2012 felt like we failed to take advantage of all the stars aligning in our favor. This year feels like we’re coming and it’s just a matter of time.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Normaltown Mike

      +1

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      • RandallPinkFloyd

        You nailed it, my friend.

        We’re right there and while monday night’s result didn’t go our way, it won’t be the last time we’re there. Hate to make grand proclamations, but I don’t see any reason why we won’t be in Atlanta on an annual basis on the first weekend in December.

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    • merk

      2012 was the result of having JJ, TG, and AM. As we saw, once JJ left the D fell back to earth and once AM left we have barely touched decent QB play until the last 2 years. With TG luckily we replaced him with Michel and Chubb.

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    • Sanford222view

      Exactly my thoughts on the matter. The difference Monday night was Bama has a slightly deeper roster. In 2012, UGA matched well in the first 22 but Bama was MUCH deeper after that. We had some key plays and the offense played their hearts out to make that game so close. Bama was clearly the better team in 2012.

      This season I would say those teams were pretty equal and Saban knew they would lose at halftime if he didn’t make change at QB to provide a passing threat. Georgia forced the change this time around. In 2012 Bama didn’t change anything. They just ran the ball down our throats and then used play action to beat us over the top. That is what they wanted to do the whole time. That wasn’t working this time. Georgia was controlling the game and Saban had to take drastic measures to win. Unfortunately it worked and they made one more play than Georgia.

      Kirby has just about closed the depth of talent gap. Now we just need to elevate the on field talent in the secondary to have a more complete team. Sanders and Parrish are above average DB’s but not quite what Kirby wants back there. Hopefully the young DB talent he has recruited will be ready to step up next year to improve that area.

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    • Dawglicious

      this! BA nails it

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  13. Russ

    This is the reason I don’t get everyone saying how much more talent Bama has than we do. The talent I saw on the field was pretty much equal, as the score laid out. Bama might have a little more quality depth, but that is changing fast and in the next year or two, won’t be an issue either.

    Saban made a desperation move to allow Bama to win on the last play of OT, the only time they lead all game. We’re there now. Next time, we’ll win.

    I want Bama.

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    • This is the reason I don’t get everyone saying how much more talent Bama has than we do. The talent I saw on the field was pretty much equal…

      Except Alabama was missing several key starters on both offense and defense.

      The gap has closed since 2012, to be sure, but don’t kid yourself. There is no team in the country right now that’s as deep as Alabama.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Russ

        They do still have the depth, but it’s not as great as it’s been. When we have six 5 stars in this class to Bama’s 1, and we are on pace to have the number 1 class next year, that gets rid of that gap.

        Read the recruiting breakdown in yesterday’s AJC. The gap in depth isn’t as big as everyone says. And the talent on the field is essentially equal overall.

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        • You’re mixing the future with the present. Alabama was down Jennings and its top two ILBs and didn’t miss a beat on defense most of the night. Tua played behind an offensive line missing two starters, with one of those replaced by a true freshman. Not too shabby.

          Also, don’t forget that Alabama is doing this while sending a bunch more of its players to the NFL than Georgia has over the past few seasons. Let’s see how things shake out for the Dawgs replacing what should be a stout NFL draft class after this year.

          Georgia is getting there, but it’s at least another season or two before that particular playing field is level.

          Liked by 2 people

          • Russ

            I wasn’t clear in my response. The future is bright for sure, but the current talent gap is narrow. Check the numbers in that article. It looks at current talent and it’s not that wide of a gap.

            One difference I do see is that Bama’s talent and depth is properly spread across almost all positions. Our talent is still a little too clustered, though the OL and DL are the best they’ve been in a while, and are getting better still.

            But yeah, I agree with you that the future is bright and one reason I wasn’t jumping off a bridge Monday night (couldn’t sleep, though).

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      • DawgPhan

        Bama put in a freshman QB, WR, RB, and LT that were all very good.

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    • paul

      Russ, that’s the problem though, next time. Will there be a next time? If so, what in what game? The next time we are likely to see Alabama in most seasons is the SEC championship game. So, even if we win we still need at least two more wins. And that’s only going to get harder with the inevitable playoff expansion. Then we’re going to need three. We were lucky not to have to face them until we got to the title game. It’s not an opportunity likely to come around very often.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Russ

        SECCG is exactly where I expect to see them. We should be back next year and so should Bama.

        I will say that we were very lucky with injuries this year (and Bama wasn’t). Bama still has a slight edge in depth, but I think we will close that soon. So, barring catastrophic injuries (multiple), I expect to be back in ATL next season. Bring on Bama.

        Liked by 1 person

        • paul

          Yes, we did dodge the injury bullet this year. No significant off field issues that I recall. And no academic issues either. Stellar year in all three regards. Regression to the mean is inevitable though.

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          • merk

            FSU would like a word about what happens when you lose your starting QB and the back-up is not an all-world freshman

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        • paul

          One of the issues that worries me about taking on Alabama in the SECCG, I grew up with Munson so I’m already worrying, is that we are likely to get pretty beat up in the process. They tend to be a very physical team. With two more games in consecutive weeks, that can be an problem.

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  14. paul

    Senator, I understand your point and I agree. Georgia is light years ahead of where it was just a couple of short seasons ago. We have made significant improvement in virtually every area of our game. That’s hard to do. It should be applauded and Kirby and his staff deserve tremendous credit for driving that change. As fans, we should not only be appreciative of such dedication to excellence, we should make that known, as you have here. Those young men played their hearts out, leaving everything on the field. They deserve and have our admiration and thanks for a magical season that exceeded all expectations. Never the less, it’s difficult not to be massively disappointed in the outcome of that game. As has been correctly pointed out here, most years a team can’t even get past the SEC championship without beating Alabama. That we made it all the way to the title game without having to face the Tide was quite an anomaly. It’s not an opportunity that will present itself often. I believe Georgia will continue to get better. However, that’s not a guarantee that we will ever again have a shot at a national championship. Alabama is likely to get better as well. Florida and Tennessee may rise back up. The playoffs will almost certainly expand. There are a lot of moving parts involved with finding yourself in the final game. Talent is only one of them. We were there. We had a lead late. We let it slip away. That sucks no matter how you look at it. Yes, I am proud of our team. Yes, I believe we will get better. Yes, I will be back in the fall as hopeful as the most optimistic fan. And yet, yes, I am bitterly disappointed. You have to seize opportunities when when they present themselves.1980 was my senior year at UGA. We came close to a national championship a couple of more times the next few years. Then it all fell apart and we were never really good again until we hired Mark Richt. Things can change quickly. Sometimes for the better. Sometimes not.

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    • I’m not telling you that it’s wrong to be disappointed by the loss. I’m simply saying that things are headed in the right direction.

      There are no guarantees in life, true. But I do know that this program has a more viable shot at a national title today than it’s had in years. I can live with that.

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  15. noseanmorono

    I’m not buying in to the narrative that’s going around on ESPN and so forth’s chatterboxes about Saban being “ballsy” and a “genius” for putting in Tua. Watch Saban’s halftime interview one more time…I told my wife, “hell, he looks like he’s about to cry…and he sounds like he just had a stroke”. The man was in shock. He didn’t make a ballsy move, a calculated move…he was DESPERATE. Georgia had Alabama on the ropes, out gaining them nearly 3 to 1 and had clock control 2 to 1 by the end of the first half. More to the point, we were flat beating them at their own game and they couldn’t stop us. Tua was a shoestring tackle away from two three-and-outs on his first two possessions, his touchdown pass on 4th down was nothing more than a short hail-mary, their special teams were a mess…man there’s so much about that game that could’ve translated into a Georgia blow-out of the “Dynasty”.

    I would also like to point out, for the team that “has the maturity because they’ve been in the big game before”, they sure acted like a bunch of pouting punks with all the late hitting and shoving nonsense. A player goes after a coach and you put him back in on special teams? For all the talk about Saban creating disciplined teams, it sure looked a lot more like the Meyer-era Gators in that it was a collective of talented athletes that were running the show while the coaches just prayed it didn’t blow up in the wrong direction. For Alabama, it should have, but didn’t. Maybe that’s why Saban was so happy at the end of the game…for a seasoned coach, he probably recognized that his team was on the brink of complete meltdown and there was nothing he could do about it. The only cool and collective person was Tua, who really seemed completely calm as if he was just out playing with house money. Just me, but that isn’t coaching…

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Bigshot

    Saban had a whole extra week to prepare Tua. While the other 3 teams were playing championship games Alabama was sitting. The 4th team gets a bye. How fair is that? It wasn’t that big of a risk. Saban knew what he had.

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  17. I told my buddy before game I thought Dawgs would win fairly comfortably , 29-21. But, was worried about Alabama doing something un-Alabama like to get back in. Didn’t know it would be a qb change but maybe a fake punt or something to grab momentum . Thought Dawgs would weather the storm and come out on top.

    All was going to plan until the refs fucked several times in the 2nd half. Not normally one to complain about officials but that was bad.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Normaltown Mike

      I wouldn’t be opposed to a group of us taking a road trip to the midwest to find them sums-a-bitches and whippin they ass wherever we find em.

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  18. W Cobb Dawg

    Sorry, it wasn’t Tua and it wasn’t saban pulling a rabbit out of a hat. It was refs handing the game to one team in crunch time. If the game was called fairly, UGA wins. That’s how I’ll always remember this game.

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  19. Jt (the other one)

    I am absolutely disappointed and I have a heart that has been STOMPED!

    Now time for a little perspective;
    -I watched Saban’s morning after press conference it is was clear there was no “we are the best of the best and can’t be touched” tone AT ALL. Note his opening line:

    -I watched Kirbo post game and there wasn’t one iota of hint that we are going to take a step back or he was letting the foot off the gas as a program.
    Moreover the season itself sounded like a milestone within the football program. It is this that IMO distinguishes this program from the past – Kirby is building a PROGRAM that will last and not have the ebb and flow of the past based on poor roster management and holes in recruiting. We are the #1 team in rankings and don’t forget we were #6 in 2015 (transition year), #3 last year and by a WIDE margin #1 this year. The best part? We seem to be able to coach that talent up. That is HUGE and very different from the past.

    NO COMPLACENCY

    Buckle up this ride is just beginning. I predict an SEC Championship again and berth in the CFP again. Get used to being there but don’t take it for granted.

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