For someone that makes as many mistakes as I tend to make (see: foot in mouth, training at new job, half-ass trying to lose weight, etc) I'm a bit of a perfectionist. It's a combination of ego and drive that keeps me always wanting to be the best and makes me get really down on myself when I'm not. Of course, no one is perfect (at least since 33 A.D.) and I'm damn sure not going to be the first to break that mold. When that reality sinks in, it always takes me by surprise for some reason and it always gets me down in the mouth.
I write this blog much akin to a male/sports version of Sex and the City. Something happens in my personal life that I feel the need to blog about and I try and relate it to UGA and sports. That doesn't happen all the time as basic news and opinions don't really lend itself any relation to what I'm doing, but sometimes when I write posts about things like heart (I can hear you guys laughing already), The Blackout, etc. those tend to touch a more personal chord with me.
So, after a day (and a weekend, really) where I was reminded yet again that I am not perfect, I thought I'd tie that in with UGA's own battle with perfection and the subsequent fallout should that not be achieved.
As you all very well know, we have a pretty damn good football team on our hands for 2008. As The Good Senator pointed out
, we are finally starting to get some of that elusive national media attention that we as Dawg fans have yearned and needed for a very long time. However, as PWD has reminded us
, our schedule is brutal even though no team we play for 2008 will have a bye week before we play them.
I've seen plenty of discussion on the message boards especially after G-day about how good we look and how 2008 looks to be our year. Some of this loyalty I believe is a bit blind as I even caught a little bit of flack on this blog regarding my criticisms of the O-line, that I still feel is one of the most athletic in the nation, but lacks unity. Something Groo and I discussed on his blog
and he (to an extent) as well as most of those in the blogosphere and media agree with me.
As I sit, I don't feel UGA is a perfect team at the end of this upcoming season. The schedule is extremely tough and we play in the SEC. That's good for at least one extra game (SECC) and some of the toughest competition in the nation. The pursuit of perfection, to me, is going to be one long and bumpy road.
From the reports I've read, I believe the team has a new motto and that is "stay in the moment" or something of that nature. If I'm completely wrong on that, please correct me. While the wording may be off, the idea is correct. This team needs to stay focused on the task at hand, take it one day and one practice at a time, and prepare like the upcoming game is their last one. One loss to GSU all the way to one loss to Florida could put this team on its back and shelve any kind of hopes until 2009.
So, we as fans need to do the same. Of course it's fun to look and say "this team is the most talented I've seen in 28 years." Hell, I guarantee you that it's right up there on par with them, but that really doesn't mean much if we don't win. And sometimes we won't. We will not always get the great call. We will not always have the ball bounce to us on a critical 4th quarter fumble. We will not always hook up with Verron Haynes, Mikey Henderson, or Mo Mass on a game-ending drive. Sometimes sh*t happens in football. We, as fans, need to be aware of that.
Why do I say this? Why am I not blogging about how UGA could run the table in '08? Because right now it's not appropriate. We need to make sure that the only bar set is the one set by our team. I can see it now. The same fans that were praising Willie Martinez for his Defense's performance against Hawaii will be the same fans that are buying rope at Ace Hardware and looking for trees when his soft zone fails us at a critical time. The same people that want to exalt Matt Stafford and Knowshon Moreno may be the same ones that scream "PUT IN GRAY AND CALEB!" when our two All-American candidates have off days.
All we can do is hope for the best and expect the worst. It's called support. It's going to be really tough as a true fan to deal with so much less room on the bandwagon now that we're good again, but it's going to be nothing compared to still being a fan when the bandwagon gets light after a possible unexpected loss.
So as we proceed with our season expectations and previews (speaking of which, let's hope Doug
unleashes his early predictions again because last year's were GREAT), let's remember that the Pursuit of Perfection is one tough row to hoe. Not many teams have done it and not many will do it again. If the Dawgs are staring down the barrel of playing Florida after a tough loss to LSU, then all we can do is keep on trucking right along with them.
And as a notice to all you fairweathers out there (you know who you are), if you're not prepared to go down with the ship, then go ahead and get off now. We've got a 12 game season against some mighty tough competition. We don't have time to worry with you if you're not in it for the long haul. I don't care if we're 0-12 or 12-0 when the dust settles. I bleed Red and Black and I could give less of a damn if you have a problem supporting my Dawgs. We still had a team in the 90s without you and I guarantee we'll still have one after you decide to go off to the next big thing.
Until next time kids.
Labels: College Football, UGA Football