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Thursday, October 30, 2008
Well, Hate Week 2008 Part I is slowly drawing to a close as the game approaches and even though there's not enough posts in me to really tell you how much I hate the University of Florida, I guess at some point I'm going to have to quit my childish behavior and act like someone who knows a little bit about football.

As always, you can find Jody's information overload here and Doug's preview here.

So, let's not waste any time talking about the rivalry and spend a little bit of time talking about the game.

When Florida has the ball:

Geez, where do you start? I mean from the top to the bottom, there's a ton of playmakers in every spot of the Gator Offense. Obviously Dawg fans feel that Tebow is beatable, but he's still a top talent and a game changer at his position. His ability to buy time in the pocket pays off in dividends because there's only so much coverage you can lay down on Harvin and Co. before they eventually get open.

Also when looking at Tebow, you have to give respect to his ability to throw the long ball. While I would say that Stafford has the stronger, more accurate arm, Tebow can still put the ball on the money and anyone who disagrees is flat out wrong.

At WR you have the all-everything in Percy Harvin. Once considered to be one of te fastest players in all of college football, he's now more known for his elusiveness as much as his speed. He's ridiculously tough to tackle and he catches the ball quite well. It's also tough to call him just a WR because he's just as likely to go into the backfield and receive the ball.

However, it's nearly as tough to defend other players in Jeffrey Demps and Chris Rainey. Rainey has come on the scene much like Noel Devine did for West Virginia last year and Demps is now dubbed the fastest player in college football. Those two players are doing an exceptional job in running the football as well as catching it, but have really picked up the slack left by the not-so-impressive Emmanuel Moody, the USC (the real one) transfer.

The one real weakness of the Gator Offense is actual on the Offensive Line. There's all this talk of "wider splits" to give them easier access to hit their blocks, but the truth is, they have not done a superb job of keeping Tebow upright. They haven't given up nearly the sacks of the 2003 UGA team, but you can still get pressure on Tebow if you try hard enough and go hat-on-hat with those guys.

Our key to winning here is to do three things. We need to get adequate pressure with 4-5 guys up front, keep Florida in 4th and long and we need to force Florida into field goal situations. The first is easy enough to do if we can just play the dominant football we're capable of instead of what we've seen so far. I know that's easier said than done, but we have the athletes up front to play pressure football; it just hasn't clicked yet.

On the second point, we've got to shoot for 4th and 3+. A situation like 3rd and long means nothing if it results in 4th and 1 because Meyer will go for it every time. Most likely, if he goes for it, he'll convert and that will just wear out Defense down physically and mentally. We have to find a way, whether through incompletions, proper tackling (another "easier said than done" thing) or sacks to get Florida into punting situations. We'll touch on their Special Teams later, but I'd much rather Florida kick anything than for them to run another play.

Lastly, we have to make Florida settle for 3 instead of 7. It's obvious that the Gators score points, so to think that they won't get their fair share on Saturday is ludicrous. What we have to do is limit opportunities and if they get points, make sure they're the kind that doesn't kill you. Sure, it sucks to give up any scores at all, but I'll take Florida kicking 4 field goals and have UGA get 2 touchdowns. Wouldn't you?

The real magic number here is 3 seconds. Keep that in mind because that's the amount of time Tebow has to either get rid of he football or take a sack. If he has to throw that football within 3 seconds, then the chances of a mistake GREATLY increase if we exercise proper fundamentals in coverage. However, if he has all day back there to throw the football, we're toast.

When UGA has the ball:

Well our little-baby-look-how-cute-and-injured-they-are Offensive Line grew up last game didn't they? They blocked well and protected well in route to helping us rack up 52 points on LSU in Death Valley. They made me one proud Dawg that day and we're going to need another solid performance from them in this game.

We already know what we have with Knownshon and Stafford, but we're going to need exceptional play from our Fullbacks in order to really make the running game effective. I'd still expect to see a lot of plays where Southerland is lined up as a TE because we'll stay with the toss-sweep as long as it keeps on working for us. An interesting matchup will be Southerland versus Brandon Spikes, who has turned out to be a dominating LB for the Gators.

Not to be forgotten in all this is how well Florida's Secondary has played in comparison to their effort last year. We absolutely torched them but it's going to be a little tougher this time around, even with better WR play from MoMass and A.J. Green.

Our key to success here has got to be our ability to score points on nearly every drive. Should our Defense not be able to stop Florida's Offense like we'd hope, then we're going to need superb play from every position in order to put us in good shape to score points because the Gators will probably match us score-for-score for most of the game.

It's imperative for this game to be won and lost through the legs of Knowson Moreno, much like we did against LSU last week, although, we were pretty balanced from the get-go as soon as we snapped the ball. If Bobo can keep the aggressive attitude and gameplan for this game, then we might be in for a good day.

Stafford's play is going to be crucial as well. I thought he played an exceptional game lat week by stepping up into the pocket and keeping his mechanics in check, especially under duress. We'll need some really poised play from him because he will feel the heat a time or two. I'm positive that Charlie Strong has some big things planned for Saturday.

Special Teams:

Well, Florida's got themselves a version of Beamer Ball, don't they? All the way from their exceptional blocking and returning, to forcing tons of pressure on the punter or kicker to get the ball off early and high.

When it comes to punting, I trust Mimbs will get rid of the ball in plenty of time and I'm almost positive that we'll give him plenty of time to do so. We don't cover punts well, but we've had moderate success in blocking for them this year. However, what worries me is that when Mimbs tried to punt directionally, like in the Alabama game, he caught a severe case of the shanks. The chess match we're about to get in on Saturday is going to be all about who does the small things right and field position is going to play into a big part of that.

In the returning game, Florida is probably the most dangerous team we've played to date in that regard. Brandon James is a man with the ball in his hands and he has the ability to break one at any point in time if we kick it directly to him. So we either have to learn to directionally kick, or we'd better cover like our brains on fire.

Now, in regards to kicking field goals, I think Blair Walsh has the edge here. Florida opts for touchdowns instead of FGs, so their kicker has not been tested like ours has. I think if we put the game on their kicker's shoulders, then we have a great shot at winning.

In the return game for us, I'm still no sold that Prince Miller and Logan Gray should be splitting time back there since to me, I think Miller is a much better option back there. Watch me say something like that and then Logan Gray will bust one for a score this weekend. Hey, I'm fine with being proven wrong in that regard.

The Intangibles:

Usually, I don't touch on stuff like this, but for this game, it's going to be the real engine that drives the winner. We've talked about The Celebration. We've talked about our game last year, we've seen the film, we've all heard about how the Gators really feel about what happened last year and everything else you can think of.

Florida is out for revenge and UGA is out to prove it's legit. This game has national and SEC title implications. The winner is all but guaranteed a slot in Atlanta in December, whereas the loser is looking at the Capital One Bowl at best.

both teams have too much to lose in this game, which is why my blood is itching so badly for us to kick this thing off. There's too much hype in this game and even though I'm excited as hell to get going, I'm really enjoying the national attention we're getting surrounding this game.

The truth is, Florida has more to prove here than we do. We're the ones that got the best of them last year and we're the ones that left them dumbfounded after our first score. Now, does that put more pressure on Florida to perform or does it put more on UGA to match that level on intensity?

We know our fans will be in the game and this is the first time in a long time that I think the entire Dawg Nation agrees that we have a legitimate shot to win. That new mentality will keep us playing hard in Jacksonville for years to come.

The team that masters these intangibles of revenge and legitimacy is the team that will stroll out of Jacksonville with a win on Saturday. If Florida is so hell-bent on revenge that they forget their fundamentals, then they'll lose badly. However if UGA thinks that they don't have something tp prove as well and play their game based on how Florida plays, we'll get crushed. We have to do things our way again, just like last year in order to be happy on Sunday.

What I think will happen:

Florida has been playing on all cylinders for weeks now, whereas UGA finally looks like they've put it together on both sides of the ball. This game is too close to call if you just look at the paper statistics, but if you did just go off of that, then you have to say Florida will win on Saturday.

You have to look at the whole picture and see which team you think will perform well under the pressure. The team that understands and handles the pressure adequately will be the one claiming bragging rights for the next 364 days.

Look for the game to get off to either a very slow start or an extremely high paced one. For UGA to win, it MUST score early and often and force the Gators to play from behind, which is something they haven't been used to for much of this year. If I'm Mark Richt and I win the coin toss, there's no doubt in my mind that I want the ball first. If we can score, maybe we can deflate the Gator team early on.

However, what I think will happen is that we'll sputter right out of the gate and that Florida will just want the game a little more than we will. There won't be any special celebration from them or anything like that, but their response i going to be to hit us in the mouth as early as possible and as hard as possible in order to let us know they're here to play.

Florida will score first and we'll be playing catch up the rest of the game. I hate to say this, but we'll bring it close but not close enough to ever really put the future of the game in doubt. Florida gets their revenge and we stay angry until this time next year. Just like last year, however, I'm BEGGING to be proved wrong.

UGA: 38
UF: 45

Until next time kids.

Be safe (and Go Dawgs!)

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As I write this, I'm in the metropolis known as Perry, GA and am almost ready to hitch a ride down towards Jacksonville. However, I'm going to make a pit stop in Sunbury, GA and you should as well.

You see, I went to college with a friend whose parents own a nice little restaurant on the coast called the Sunbury Crab Co. and tonight they're having their annual GA/FLA Tailgate Party and Oyster Roast (details below). In fact, the place is built in their backyard. It's a heckuva nice place, and if you need that "Bulldog Point of Pride," their son was a Battle Hymn Soloist and is one of the best friends I have to this date. He's the soloist in the You Tube video below.

So, if you happen to be heading down to Jacksonville, it's right off of I-95 at the Midway exit. The full "press release" of the GA/FLA Tailgate Party and Oyster Roast is below. Tell them Kit sent you and then come find me at the bar.

Bulldog fans, kick off the GA/FL weekend in style Thursday, October 30 at the Sunbury Crab Company Restaurant on the Georgia Coast. It’s the 5th annual Ga/Fl Oyster Roast Tailgate Party!
Enjoy local oysters, shrimp, blue crab, and clams all harvested within sight of this scenic waterfront restaurant. Pay just $20.00 and you can sample it all at the seafood tent in the downstairs courtyard, or if you prefer, order off the menu upstairs. Live entertainment on the downstairs stage by The Midway Allstars (no cover charge for this special event).
Restaurant opens at 5pm, party starts at 6pm…GO DAWGS…(Florida fans with a sense of humor are also welcome). for directions
Tired, hungry dawg fans can stop in for Sunday lunch on the way home.
Hope to see y'all there.
Until next time kids.

Be safe.

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Tuesday, October 28, 2008
I don't have time to write a fancy intro to this thing. Hatred is abounding. Must. Write. List.

The Ten Things I Utterly Hate About Florida Fans

10) They Don't Respect Stafford -- Even after last year's complete domination through the air (as well as on the ground), the Gator contingent still thinks that Matt Stafford couldn't hold Tebow's jock. Well, I hate to tell you, but everyone else outside of the state of Florida disagrees. There's a reason why Dawg fans are sweating and that's because Stafford has a real chance of going pro shortly after this season and by doing so, he could be the #1 pick in the NFL Draft. You don't hear any of that talk around Gainesville, do you? Watch Tebow on Saturday and see how many times he, ON HIS OWN, audibles the team into a different play. Superman's got the physical tools, but apparently he shipped off of Krypton before he got that mental prowess that Stafford has. I want a QB that can RUN an Offense. Not one that can merely execute it.

9) Nothing Good Ever Came Out of Florida -- "Heaven's Waiting Room" is nothing but a sand pit, surrounded by ocean. Sure, you've got that cool space shuttle launch once in a while, and I can't disagree that Daytona, Miami and PCB are some of the best places for spring break, but seriously what has Florida contributed to the world lately? Oh that's right, y'all do that whole "orange juice" thing. But seriously, I haven't drank a drop of Simply Orange since I saw Urban pimp it (shout out: Mackie).

8) Gator Fans are Stupid -- No, really. You guys are morons. Thank God you have a genius like Orson Swindle keeping part of the world thinking that some of you have some sense. However, most of us with half a brain know the truth and, that is something in the water in Florida has convinced all of you that mullets, Trans Ams and being on COPS is still cool. 

7) You Don't Dress Up for Games -- Seriously, what good fan of college football in general doesn't see Gameday as a time to strut your best stuff? Instead you wear T-shirts and parade around in your Sunday afternoon's best. Save that sh*t for the NFL.

6) I Think Tebow is an "OK" Guy -- Alright, this might not have much to do with the fans, except in regards to their undying love for him, but man I can't force myself to hate the kid and that drives me nuts. J.P. Wilson, Rudy Carpenter and Steven Garcia are all people I despise, but for some reason, I just can't hate the kid and he BLEEDS Orange and Blue. He's a good kid, he sets a good example and he always says the right things to the media. What I REALLY hate is that he ended up at a place like Florida. I do hate that "jump up and down while waving arms" thing that he does AND I think the jump pass is flat-out stupid. So, I got that going for me I guess.

5) You People Ignore Math -- Without sounding like a Georgia Tech geek, I despise the fact that you want to point out your total domination of UGA since 1990, but still ignore the overall record or the record over the last 5 games. Wake up Florida people; we're not the same team you dominated for all those years. At least ACT like we have a shot of winning because, much like last year, if we do win you'll look stupid for another 364 days.

4) You're Hypocritical -- Yeah, we've had some kids get arrested in the offseason for doing things like driving drunk, carrying around an UNLOADED gun (which was later dropped) and touching some pregnant chick's belly, but at least none of our players SHOT OFF AN AK-47 or STOLE A DEAD GIRL'S CREDIT CARD. Until we have a guy do that, you morons have ZERO right to talk. PERIOD. CAPS!!1!!11!!

3) You Believe Offense Will Win You Championships -- You fools really think Chris Leak won you that National Championship? Seriously, there should have been two separate lines of ass kissing. One that lead to Ron Zook for recruiting those players and another that led to Charlie Strong for keeping you in those games. I can't wait until Strong moves on and you guys realize what you REALLY need to do in order to win. Offense is cool and chicks dig the long ball. I get it. However, Defense will keep crystal balls in your trophy case and allow UGA prospects to knock them over and break them.

2) You're Screwing Everything Else Up -- Tommy Tubberville is on the hot seat right now because thought this "Spread" idea was a good one. Wonder where he got that from? Don't get me wrong, I hate him, but man, your disease of this "Spread" offense is, well, spreading. I'll be honest, I think the Spread is a flash in the pan and more teams nowadays are figuring out how to beat it. You had about a two-year head start where guys said "man that team is fast, we need to get faster players on Defense" and that's what they did. Beat up on UK all you want to, but speed won't win EVERY game. Sure didn't look that fast against Ole Miss.

1) Urban Meyer is Your Head Coach -- No need to go any further. The guy is a tool bag if there ever was one. Here's a list of some of his accomplishments:
I could keep going, but there's no need to. However, via Ally, Gators Wear Jean Shorts has this gem:

Try JibJab Sendables® eCards today!

Well, there you have it. Now you know WHY I hate Florida fans so much. So, join in down in the comments section and let me know why YOU hate them so much.

Until next time kids.

Be safe.

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So over the course of the past year, I made a friend that happens to be a Florida Gator. Earlier this season, he forwarded his SEC preview that he wrote to me and it was as funny as it was informative. I instantly thought that it would be a good addition to Hate Week Part I for us Dawg fans to hear things from the other side. 

I hope you'll enjoy. If you disagree with what he writes, feel free to let him know in the comments section. However, this is my house and I do appreciate you using proper manners to my guests. Curse me all you want, but keep it respectful, capice?

Florida/Georgia 2008 - From a Gators Perspective


Greetings from the Land of Jorts! Well the game that we all have been looking forward to for 360 days is finally upon us. Two years ago I said that this Cocktail Party would be the most anticipated game in the last 20 years of the series and it looks like that prediction was right on the money. I can’t remember any other time heading into this game that Dawg and Gator fans were more excited about their respective squads. Both teams are playing their best football of the year and I see that trend continuing for the rest of the year. I really believe the winner of this game will go onto beat Alabama in the SECCG. Bama has looked like ass, ever since the first half of the Georgia game and both the Dawgs and Gators have most of their tough SEC games out of the way. This one should be for all the marbles.  

The entire point of me writing this was to bring a differing opinion about the game to the site. With that being said, it would be pointless for me to base that opinion on my love for the Gators and not on the facts because I’m sure everyone here cares the same way about the Pups. So let’s keep all of the “Knowshon is the best RB in the history of football” and “Tebow could cure cancer” homerisms out of the way and look at the facts. We’ve can save all of the trash talking for the Landing or the Touchdown Lot before kickoff on Saturday!  

The 2007 Game  

Before the game last year, I don’t think the Dawgs knew how good they were and Florida didn’t realize how many holes they had on defense. Georgia was ready to fire every position coach they had after the beatdown in Knoxville a few weeks prior and were in desperate need of the off week before last years’ showdown. Florida had just won a shootout against then 8th ranked Kentucky after losing in their last possession the previous two games against LSWho and Auburn. Georgia had to kick a last second field goal to beat SEC East powerhouse Vanderbilt in their last game before J'ville. But then Mark Richt went and pulled the biggest second half turnaround this state had seen since the Braves in 1991. 

Stafford had been up and down the entire year, pretty much single handedly losing the South Carolina game. Pup fans were ready for him to cash in on his all world potential and start playing like we all knew that he could. And that is just what he did. Stafford made a number of big throws in the game exploited a weak Gator secondary. This was also the game that Knowshon Moreno used to establish himself as a household name in the SEC. He went for 185 on 33 carries and I honestly don’t think the Gators could have slowed him down if they played with 12 men on defense. The rest of the Dawgs fed off of his energy and the offense turned into the juggernaut that the Pup fans knew it could be. Percy Harvin did all that he could do to match the production Georgia was getting from Moreno. Unfortunately for Gator fans, Percy couldn’t play on the O line. Marcus Howard sacked Tebow like seventeen times and Superman really never got on track. Georgia punched the defending National Champs directly in the mouth and we never really did anything to regain the momentum. With that being said, let’s talk a little more about that “momentum”…………….

So You Think You Can Dance?

I may be one of the only Gator fans at last years’ game that really didn’t think that the Pups pre-orchestrated dance party was that big of a deal. I actually thought it was pretty awesome! It provided the shot of adrenaline that the Dawgs’ needed. It helped make the statement that “we are tired of being Floridas bitch.” But the fact of the matter I don’t think it was as big of a deal as people made it out to be. Florida scored on its next possession and led for a good part of the first half. Georgia won because Florida couldn’t tackle Knowshon Moreno, not because of Trinton Sturdivant’s sweet ass dance moves. I don’t think that the Gators will retaliate in any way this year. That’s not really Urban’s style. But even if they do, I don’t think it will really affect the game. Football is about blocking and tackling, not who has the better celebratory dance.

2008 Prediction  

Again, the whole reason that I am writing this is to give all of you with Red and Black glasses on another perspective on next Saturday’s game. Do I think Florida is going to win? Of course! I wouldn’t be wasting time writing this b.s. if I didn’t! But, I’m not one of those homers that think my team is going to win every game just because they show up. I predicted our Ole Miss loss the morning before it happened and I am much harder on my own team than I am on others. I’m pretty realistic and I try not to get caught up in all of the emotion surrounding these games every week and just stick to the facts. But unfortunately that isn’t always what the SEC is about. 

College football is as much about momentum and not overlooking your opponent as it is about 40 times and statistics. In rivalry games, anything can happen. And, I think this is going to be one of those once every 15 to 20 years games, much like the Lindsay Scott game or Spurrier’s first game back in the monsoon-like 1991 battle. Just like all big games between two heavyweights, it will probably come down to who can avoid giving up the big plays and special teams. Let’s take a look at each position for each team.

Unit by Unit Analysis


Let me start off by saying Stafford has looked really good so far this year. He is finally starting to cash in on some of his John Elway like potential. He has been able to avoid the big mistakes that plagued him throughout his first few years and has developed into a team leader. The emergence of AJ Green certainly hasn’t hurt either! Stafford has the best “arm” in the country and is capable of making all the throws and plays his team needs him to. He leads the league in Passing Yards per game and will have a big day against the Gators.  

Tim Tebow has not been himself this year. Some of that is his fault and some of it is Urban Meyer/Dan Mullen’s fault. He has a lot more weapons at his disposal this year and doesn’t have to carry as much of the load as he did last year. He is next to last in the SEC in attempts in 2008 so his numbers are obviously nowhere near his Heisman trophy winning campaign in 2007. But, Tebow has been able to manage the offense very well and only has 2 interceptions on the year. He has begun to run the ball more the past few games which has added another element back to the offense. I expect the much of the same from Tebow this week. All that Florida needs from Tebow is for him to play like he always does, solid.  

Advantage: EVEN

Running Back

Knowshown Moreno is the best back in the SEC. Much like Tebow, the Dawgs always know what you’re going to get out of him. Michael Smith had a field day against the Gator D a few weeks ago when he ran for 130 yards or so, and I think Knowshon will do the same. With a healthy Sutherland now leading the way, look for Slowshon to run for 100 +yds.  

The Gators have a three headed monster at running back this year. Depending on whether or not Emmanuel Moody is back 100% from a high ankle sprain will determine how many carries each of the backs will get, but I suspect that he will still be gimped up. That leaves Jeff Demps (the fastest player in college football) and Chris Rainey to share the workload. Both backs are capable of taking it to the house if they get past the first level of the defense and for little guys actually run very tough between the tackles. The Gators will get plenty of yards, but you can’t pick against the best back in the conference.

Advantage: DAWGS

Wide Receiver

If it was legal to just skip college and go straight to the NFL, then I think AJ Green would have never made it to Georgia. Absolute stud. Mo Mass is solid, but not spectacular and after that it kind of drops off for the Pups. Kenneth Harris and Michael Moore are decent, but I don’t see them making much of an impact in a game this big. If AJ can’t get his catches, the Dawgs will sputter in the passing game.  

Florida has the horses, but again, they have the second fewest attempts in the SEC, so there aren’t that many balls to go around. Percy Harvin is still the best receiver in the league, sorry AJ. Louis Murphy and Carl Moore have been steady this year, but both are due for a breakout game very soon. A team strength for the Gators is that they seldom drop balls. Tebow, unlike Stafford, throws an extremely catchable ball and doesn’t have to worry about drops. This is why I give the slight edge to the Gators at this position.

Advantage: GATORS

Offensive Line

Yes, I know that Georgia has had 39 different offensive lineman get hurt so far this year. Who cares!? They have still been solid across the board. Three sophomore and two freshman, and they are playing like veterans. Stafford has only been sacked 9 times all year and Knowshon has obviously gotten his yards. When you recruit like the Dawgs and Gators do, you can afford to suffer a few injuries.

Up until three games ago, Florida’s offensive line was piss poor. With the emergence of RS Sophomore Carl Johnson, they have finally gotten it together and the offense has begun to click as a result. UF has also started to use wider splits, which has allowed their running backs more room to operate in space. UF has given up 10 sacks to UGA’s 9, but I really don’t see either line being much of a liability or advantage in this game. Because of the inexperience of UGA, I give the slight edge to Florida.

Advantage: GATORS


Brian Mimbs and Chas Henry are the two best punters in the SEC. Henry is an ex high school QB and has been perfect on fake punts throughout his career. Urban loves fake punts in big games so look for something to happen here. Florida has the best punt block team in the country, and I did notice yesterday that Mimbs stands too close to the line of scrimmage when punting so watch out for a punt block, Dawg fans. They do have the exact same average so this one has to be a draw.  

Advantage: EVEN

Defensive Line

To have the #1 rush defense in the SEC, you don’t hear much about UGA’s defensive line. Corvey Irvin is solid but I really don’t see anyone on the Georgia roster that impresses me. But the results speak for themselves. If you lead the SEC in rush defense, you are doing something right.  

The exact same thing goes for Florida. Lawrence Marsh is the best of the bunch, but this group underachieves. Jermaine Cunningham and Carlos Dunlap were talked about a lot in the preseason but neither one have gotten a sack since Nam. If there is one area FOR BOTH TEAMS that will hold them back from winning the conference, it is the Defensive line. Due to the fact that the Dawgs have the top run defense and Florida is third I give them the edge.

Advantage: DAWGS


Rennie Curran is the type of guy that everyone would want on their defense. He is fun to watch play. Ellerbee is obviously a great player too. I’m hearing he is supposed to be back on the field next week? Daryl Gamble has been great in his absence. This is a team strength for the Dawgs. Fast and hard hitting linebackers are always a given for Georgia.  

Brandon Spikes is the best linebacker in the SEC (Rolando McClain a close second). He is slower than dirt but he is always around the ball making plays. Dustin Doe, A.J. Jones, and Ryan Stamper are all solid but not spectacular. This is also a team strength for the Gators. Since Ellerbee is coming off of an injury, I give a very slight edge to UF.  

Advantage: GATORS


This part of Georgia’s team confuses me. When you look at each player, they are all terrific, but after the game when you see how many passing yards they gave up, it tells a different story. UGA gives up the second most passing yards of any team in the SEC, which is a cause for concern against Tebow and company. Rashad Jones is very good, but much like Major Wright for the Gators, he goes for the big hit too much instead of making plays on the ball. Asher Allen is a good player, but after that it gets kind of dicey for the Pups.  

Florida starts three true sophomores and one true freshman in the secondary, and what was considered a team weakness at the beginning of the year has now become a huge strength. With that being said, we haven’t faced a QB like Stafford so far this year, so it is tough to tell what will happen. Florida is first in the league in Pass Efficiency Defense so you have to go with the Gators.

Advantage: GATORS


ATTENTION ALL DAWG FANS……LAY OFF BLAIR WALSH!!!!! He is a freaking true freshman! You’ve been very spoiled the past 8 years with Bennett and Coutu but this kid may be the best of the bunch. Big leg for a little guy.  

Jonathan Phillips is 9 for 9 this year, but only a few of those have come from more than 40 yards. Urban really doesn’t believe in field goals.  

Advantage: DAWGS


Yeah right. I’m not going to touch this one. That would be like wearing a white hood around Hollywood Road in Atlanta. I’d just be looking for a fight! Both coaches are the best in the business.

Advantage: EVEN

BY THE NUMBERS: Something HAS to give!!!!

UF rushing offense: 2nd in the SEC

UGA rushing defense: 1st in the SEC

UF Passing Defense: 1st in the SEC

UGA Passing Offense: 1st in the SEC

UF Scoring Defense: 1st in the SEC

UGA Scoring Offense: 2nd in the SEC

Matt Stafford: 2nd in the SEC in Pass Efficiency

Tim Tebow: 1st in the SEC in Pass Efficiency

Knowshon Moreno: 2nd in the SEC in rushing

Jeff Demps: 1st in the SEC in average yards/rush

AJ Green: 1st in the SEC in Receiving Yards/game

Percy Harvin: 1st in the SEC in Receiving TD’s


I could obviously go on for hours about different stats, strengths, weaknesses, blah, blah, blah but I really think that the game will come down to four key factors.

• Red Zone Success
Florida is first in the SEC in Red Zone Offense and second in Red Zone Defense. When Georgia has had trouble scoring this year, it is because they are settling for field goals instead of TD’s. If this turns into the Blair Walsh show, then the Pups will be in trouble, because the Gators count by 7’s.

• Punt Teams
Florida has the best punt block team in the country. It has been well documented that when Urban Meyer coached teams win 90+% of the time when they block a kick. As I mentioned earlier, Mimbs stands very close to the line of scrimmage sometimes on punts and could be an easy target for the Gator special teams. Also Brandon James hasn’t returned a punt for a touchdown in a few games so he is due. The punting game could be a HUGE turning point for both teams.

• Penalties, Penalties, Penalties
We are just as bad as you when it comes to penalties. Most talented teams have the same issue. I will take an aggressive, talented, highly penalized team every day of the week! But if one of the teams is able to avoid the yellow hanky on Saturday it could prove to be a huge advantage.

• AJ Green
He is one of those type of guys that could single handedly make enough plays to beat a team. If he gets deep on our 5’10” DB’s it could be strike up the band time. If it happens more than once, it could be start up the bus time, for the Gators.

Final Thoughts

I appreciate everyone that took time out of their busy day to read this junk. Although, much like myself, I think that you should reassess your goals and get a damn girlfriend. But, back to the game. The truth is I have no freaking idea what is going to happen Saturday. It is Florida Georgia for crying out loud. Ron Zook beat you guys twice when you had a team that was eight times better than we were. Last year, we beat Tennessee by 40, they beat you by 25, and then you kicked our ass up and down the field. This is the SEC. Anything can happen on any given week. 

However, there are a few certain things that I can guarantee go down on Saturday: 
1. There will be a number of Florida fans that will sport Blue Jean shorts to the game and honestly see nothing wrong with it (God bless them and their ridiculous taste in clothing).
2. The Dawg fans will put four times as much effort and energy into planning their tailgate and picking out their outfit, than they will thinking about the actual game. 
3. I will drink too much beer and end up making an idiot out of myself before passing out in someone's kitchen.

All kidding aside, I would like to thank Coach Mark Richt for making THIS A RIVALRY again. To be completely honest, I never really held any disdain for the Pups until last year, because we only lost to them twice since I even knew what football was. But now let’s just say all of us Gator fans know why our elders hate all things Dawg.

I think that it is going to be an awesome game. Definitely should be a high scoring contest. Both offenses are way too good to not put up a lot of points. I think that Florida has the advantage on special teams and that something big is going to happen that will push us over the top.


For everyone going down to the game be careful and don’t do anything TOO stupid. For all of you watching at home, the referees cannot hear you, and I promise that both Offensive Coordinators know a lot more about football than you do so get off of their back. Enjoy the game and Go Gators!

P.S. Dawgs lick balls!

*Editor's Note -- About the author: "Seth X" is a decent enough person for a Florida fan. He's written other popular articles and books such as "The Top 2% of 2% -- Why I Love Milk," "Urban's Whey -- How Protein Saved My Life," and "C.R. Took My Girlfriend -- White Chicks Love to Make it Rainey." He will be in Jacksonville this weekend and will hopefully drive back to his residence in Atlanta on Sunday a very depressed soul.

Until next time kids.

Be safe.

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"That wasn't right. It was a bad deal. It will forever be in the mind of Urban Meyer and in the mind of our football team. We'll handle it, and it's going to be a big deal." -- Urban Meyer in "Urban's Way"

Look, there's a nice way to kick off this week and the best way to do it in my mind is to talk about what everyone's been talking about since it happened nearly 365 days ago. 

The Celebration.

According to Urban Meyer, The Celebration was something that somehow wronged him in some way. It was something that he didn't see as necessary or important. He saw it as a slap in the face to good sportsmanship and his team.

However, what he apparently missed in all this was the ass-whipping he and the rest of the Florida Gators took shortly after that first touchdown was thrown. You see, the big problem with what happened in Jacksonville last year was that the whipping boy decided not to get whipped anymore. Instead, said whipping boy stood up and dared the other to hit back. When that happened, however the bully didn't know what to do.

I mean let's think about it like this, we had heard over and over again about the 15 of 18 and how much the Gators were in our heads. However, surely a master motivator like Urban Meyer would have enough of his wits about him to realize that we were going to get tired of it and actually try to play a football game. I mean no one likes losing, right?

Well, when UGA said "this song will not be the same this year," they meant it and dared the Gators to change the jukebox. 

The funny thing is, they did. 

What gets lost in all this jumbled up mess of dancing, players rushing sidelines and all that is the fact that Florida REGAINED the lead. That's right, we hit them in the mouth and they responded. They responded well enough to take a 17-14 lead in the second quarter. It was on a 43 yard FG by Joey Ijjas. 

So did our dancing in the first quarter really do that much damage in the second quarter? If I recall correctly, we only did it once, so was it post-traumatic stress? Did you see a replay and it freaked you out again? Was Trinton Sturdivant's boogaloo that horrific to where it burned the image into your retinas and you couldn't see to defend Stafford's Bomb to Massaquoi, or Knowshon's scores, or our FGs? Did we really scar you that badly?

Look, I don't know the outcome of this weekend's game. If I did, I'd lay the house on the winner and quit my job shortly thereafter. However, what I do know is that the crying needs to stop. No one gives a rat's ass about The Celebration. No one cares that Tebow was a little banged up. 

All people care about is who won the game and in 2007, you didn't. I hope to God you don't win this year, but you can't change the past and the past says we beat the hell out of you last year.

So I'm looking forward to seeing what this weekend holds, but as far as I'm concerned, Urban Meyer and the Florida Gators' need to be on notice. No tricks this weekend. No motivational ploys. We've already hit the bully in the mouth. Now we're waiting for the rematch.

Well, waiting is such a strong word. I'd more say that we're really, really REALLY looking forward to it. So much, that "Hate Week 2008 Part I" is now in full swing. Get ready to Celebrate.

Until next time kids.

Be safe.

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Sunday, October 26, 2008
Man I'm having a helluva time focusing on getting this recap out for a variety of reasons. The main one is because today kicks off Hate Week 2008 Part I. We're going to get to all that shortly, but we've got to recap that ass-whipping in Red Stick before we go any further.

This may be shorter than usual, but I'll try to make it worth your while.

The Stats Say:

That our Offense finally took stats and turned them into points. The most important stat of the day was 52 and really, nothing else matters as much as that. Of course, we took care of the football and caused LSU to make mistakes with it that helped translate into points as well.

Now, the 38 on the LSU side of the scoreboard is a little disconcerting, but then we could point to the stat that shows that LSU gained roughly 180 of those yards in the 4th quarter alone. We also kept pace with them tit for tat in that we both racked up 14 points in the 4th, extinguishing any hopes of them having a comeback.

The Good:

1) Matt Stafford -- Seriously, the kid had an exceptional day. He took care of the football and threw for 249 yards and 2 TDs, and he rushed for one as well. If you're looking for efficiency out of your QB, you needed to look no further than #7 on Saturday. He managed the game well and ran the Offense nearly flawlessly. It really was the complete game we were looking for him.

2) Knowshon Moreno -- He ran the ball extremely well on Saturday and netted himself 160 yards. I'd be interested to know when the last time we had a running back who rushed for 150+ in back-to-back games. He is quietly becoming Herschel-like in dependability when it comes to getting yards and you always know you're going to get his best effort. 

3) Darryl Gamble -- 13 tackles and 2 INTs that were returned for touchdowns. That's a HELLUVA game.

4) Gary Danielson -- I know he's an announcer, but damn he was dead on this past Saturday with calling a good game. Everyone knows that I'm a huge fan of Uncle Verne, but Gary Danielson has been just as good. In fact, he's gotten my respect ever since he was the first to mention the Celebration was planned and his performance yesterday just solidified that he, in my mind, does just as much research as anyone else when getting ready for a game.

The Bad:

1) Giving Up 38 Points -- Look, as long as we win, I don't give a damn how many points we rack up, but it's important for our Defense to flip the switch and intimidate some folks. Now, we did get 2 sacks for a total loss of almost 30 yards, but I really wish we wouldn't have gotten eaten up so poorly with the simple plays. I mean seriously, Charles Scott is not fast and we did not clog the middle and try to force him to the outside. On top of that, we went and let LSU eat us up with screens. We do that against Florida, it's curtains for sure.

2) Poor Tackling -- Yeah, this one happens sometimes with us, but we flat out got freight-trained on some of those runs from Scott. What's scarier than not being able to tackle a guy who could hardly outrun some of our LBs? Not being able to tackle guys who run faster than any guy on our team. Much faster. If we don't cure that "missed tackle" thing that's plagued us a little bit this year, we'll get gashed bad this weekend.

3) Getting Carved Up on the Run -- Man if you would've told me that LSU could tally 200 yards of rushing against this team, I would have told you that you were insane. However, they certainly did just that and for it's scary knowing that since we're going up against a team that does so good of a job of getting the ball in their playmakers' hands in open space. We've got to curb that kind of performance.

The Ugly:

1) Missed FG -- Hey, I really feel like I'm reaching to find stuff for the "ugly" list, so I'll just throw this in here. The truth is that in the past two games, Walsh has had a hard time getting the ball through the posts and even though he connected on one FG attempt, he missed the other. Thankfully we have been in positions where those misses don't totally come back to bite us, but there's a real possibility that we will be this weekend. We just need to make sure we capitalize on as many opportunities as possible.

2) Retaliation -- Darryl Gamble let the cat out of the bag after the LSU game when he said the Seniors have "something up their sleeve" for this upcoming game. Look, if the Seniors have anything planned other than whipping Florida Gator ass, I don't want any part of it. This is a week to pack a lunch and some Advil because it's going to be a damn long week followed by an absolute war on Saturday. We HAVE to stay focused to win in Jacksonville.

Well, there you have it. LSU is in the past and Florida is in the future. Time to make it happen.

Until next time kids.

Be safe.

*Editor's Note -- I did pretty good with the recap except I forgot one HUGE piece of the puzzle and that was the Offensive Line. Those guys played lights out and should have not been forgotten by a bumbling idiot like me. Congrats to all of them, not only for keeping Stafford out of serious trouble all day, but also for keeping the penalties down for the second straight game as well.

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Thursday, October 23, 2008
How does one start a post like this? We've talked about the beginning of this stretch of games all year. As UGA fans, it's all we've heard about since before the season began. Hell, I think it ended as soon as LSU won the championship last year. 

So what's different from then to now? Well, our Defense is not exceeding expectations by any means and, to be honest, neither is LSU's. Our Offense is better than expected, and LSU's is about where we thought they were.

Yet, I'm more worried about this game than any other game we've played this year. I'm optimistic that UGA can come out with a win, but it's going to be a damn hard fight in order to get one.

No sense in wasting any more time worrying. Let's get to the X's and O's. As always, Jody's Information Overload can be found here and Doug's preview can be found here.

When LSU has the ball:

You have to wonder at this point in the season if LSU would be a top 5 team if Ryan Perrilloux would've gotten his sh*t together. However, Miles has done a superb job keeping LSU in games with the 2 QB system. Part of that lies in the balance that LSU has in the running game, led by big MOFO Charles Scott. Scott reminds me of T.J. Duckett in some ways because he's a big bruiser that runs downhill and invites contact. You can't forget Mr. Track Star himself, Trindon Holiday, who is small and quick in the mold of a Darren Sproles without the strength.

LSU has a decent set of WRs as well, who all possess speed, but suffered from a case of the drops last week against South Carolina. They're big though, with Brandon LaFell being their main target and the one who is on the receiving end of a good share of passes.

What scares me the most? An O-line primarily recruited and partially coached by Stacey Searels himself. If I'm correct (and I may not be on this), LSU still employs the same zone-blocking scheme that Searels coaches at UGA today. If LSU is anything on Offense, it all starts up front behind those big uglies. 

The way UGA beats LSU in this matchup really lies in our D-line. If they can step up and get consistent pressure while not giving up large chunks of rushing yardage, we should be OK. However, we've got to be just as balanced in the Secondary as well, since our tallest CB (Bryan Evans at 5' 11") is a good 4 inches shorter than LaFell. Tim Jennings proved years ago that small CBs can play big, but we REALLY have to play big in the Secondary to have any shot as well.

Pressure up front is key, though, and we need to do our best to make LSU as one dimensional as possible in order to win.

When UGA has the ball:

The craziest thing about this year has been the role reversal from having a dominant Defense to a great Offense. It really struck me today when a poster on the Dawgvent listed about 20 reasons why he "guaranteed" a win against against LSU and you had to get all the way to #13 before he even mentioned the Defense. Granted, it's message board chatter, but it still holds some weight because statistically, we're more set up to win a shootout than we are a defensive struggle.

More-so than LSU, our success depends SOLELY on the Offensive Line. As always, in Stacey Searels we trust, but we are facing one of the more dominant D-lines in the conference, and one that gets all-world Defensive Tackle Ricky Jean-Francois back. It doesn't stop there, though. LSU is very deep on the D-line and it's going to take all we have up front to keep pace.

I expect us to see a lot of toss sweeps again in the running game, especially since we'll see Brannan Southerland back at TE after Chandler had a setback this week and will see little, if any, time. We need those dominating FBs out on the outside to try and spring Knowshon, which also gives some of our better WR blockers like MoMass opportunities to block downfield.

In the passing game, Stafford's got to limit the turnovers. The LSU fanbase is like a starved pit bull and if you turn the ball over, you feed the beast. Stafford, in my opinion (as well as Jody's), is the key to this game. He's the leader on this team and he'll be the one to calm everyone down when that crowd is trying to break our spirit.

Special Teams:

Well, we've talked about Blair Walsh being relatively unproven until he kicks that crucial field goal in Death Valley. Now he gets his chance. Brian Mimbs also needs to have a big day as well, because there will be some times where we can't get anything going and we'll need to make LSU drive the length of the field and earn their points.

LSU is just as balanced on Special Teams as we are. They have a solid FG kicker and are decent in the return game. While they're not as solid on Special Teams as, for example, Florida, they're still formidable in that area.

A LOT of pressure is on Remarcus Brown to do some great things on kickoffs. He's definitely the man now and we are going to rely heavily on him to put us in decent field position. We'll really need to be strong in this area, like every other area, as well.

What I think will happen:

Man, I really think this is going to be a tough one for us. While I'm not ready to predict a loss, I am ready to say that if we don't bring our best football to Baton Rouge, we'll walk away with a loss. The thing that scares me the most are the distractions we've had this week. From rumors about Kiante Tripp, to injuries that include Aaron White's shoulder and Akeem Hebron's season-ending ankle dislocation, I'm super worried about our focus. I'd be lying if I said that I think we spent enough time game-planning for this contest. Add in the fact that our most crucial game of the season is next week versus Florida, and even I'm completely distracted.

Expect UGA to come out and really try to establish the ground game. A lot of speculation this week has included questions about whether or not we take the ball if we win the coin toss. My opinion is that we choose to kick and see how our Defense is going to stack up against their Offense. LSU fans are always crazy, but to me, they'd be slightly LESS crazy after about 3-4 minutes into the contest and an LSU Offensive drive that stalls. Of course, people have asked the question "How Loud is Loud?" and the truth is, no one really knows.

We'll have to stop LSU on the first drive and then score first and make them play from behind. However, we've got to put in 60 good minutes of football in order to pull off a win...just ask South Carolina about that. This game is won and lost on the feet of Knowshon and our O-line. I think we go out, stop LSU, score first and then just try to keep the game in check for most of the way.

I don't think we blow them out by any means, but a workman-like performance ain't gonna fly either. UGA's gotta hit LSU directly in the mouth and we've got to have a "man-enough" mentality here. I think regardless of the distractions this week, we actually do that and we walk away from Baton Rouge with a hard-fought win. It'll be ugly because it always is, but I think our talent on both sides of the ball outshines what LSU has.

The biggest part of what we do needs to be to find the spark that ignited our run the rest of the way down the line from last year. It's imperative that we start playing not to lose and start playing to win. We've got to get mean and stay mean as hell for the next month. 

I think we can do it and I think we do it here. We'll definitely earn the win, though.

UGA 24
LSU 20

Until next time kids.

Be safe (and Go Dawgs!)

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Wednesday, October 22, 2008
I know it's the second week in a row that I haven't posted a List and I do apologize about that. However, there have been some other things lately that needed my attention and it's caused me to fail a little bit on my blogging duties. I'll definitely have a preview up tomorrow, though, regardless if I have to stay up until 3:00 am to do it.

I do have some "around the blogosphere" tidbits for you, though:

  • Quinton at the Georgia Sports Blog informs us that Pulpwood is back for LSU. As always, Pulpwood breaks it down properly.
  • The Good Senator provides some highlights from Chip Towers' post at the AJC. It's a good "Cliffs Notes" version of the article. Also, be sure to check out this week's Mumme Poll.
  • Mackie at Blogging Pantsless has this gem of an article written in LOL Cajun. How about you check it out?
  • Hamp's also got some final thoughts from Vandy. Always good to get another take on a game, but I never thought about that SEC Truck commercial like that until he mentioned it.
Ok, I think that's it for right now. Preview coming tomorrow.

Until next time kids.

Be safe.

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Sunday, October 19, 2008

There are a ton of people out there who are absolutely disgusted with our performance on Saturday, but I'll be honest, I'm really really REALLY pleased with this win. All in all, Vandy is a damn tough team. They have the record to reflect that. They've also played, and in 5 cases, beat, teams that are very good and very competitive.

We'll break down the game, but before I go any further, everyone needs to understand one thing and one thing only: we won. 

The Stats Say:

The stats indicate that this game could have been a blowout. Think about it like this, Blair Walsh missed two field goals, resulting in 6 points not making it to the board. Take that and couple it with the points we gave Vandy on turnovers and you have a totally different ballgame.

However, you could've seen it coming from a mile away. Vandy is a ridiculously opportunistic team. They lead the SEC in turnovers taken and every game they've been in, they've been in it because of their Defense.

Nothing was different than that on Saturday. We gashed them on the run, we blocked well downfield and we executed well on some long passes. If Stafford doesn't turn the ball over twice (the second time he's done that in as many games), and we convert on those field goals, then the score is more like 30-7. At that point, I think we would have been excited about the game, right?

The Good:

1) Forcing Turnovers -- Darius Dewberry and Reshad Jones both had good days in capitalizing on turnovers, even though we dropped at least another two possible interceptions in the game as well. However, it's nice to know we could finally get some interceptions in there.

2) Commitment to the Running Game -- I absolutely love the toss sweep and I'm a huge fan of Bobo using it to perfection. Knowshon had a helluva day running, racking up over 170 yards of offense, including a touchdown. Nothing wrong with that at all.

3) Shaun Chapas Continues His Dominance -- Last week Chapas busted out and showed great balance, not only with blocking, but also running the ball and catching it out of the backfield. This time around, he continued to do the same thing. I'll admit, I've been extremely worried about the departure at Southerland at the end of the season, but if Chapas continues this trend, I'll be really pleased and les worried.

4) The Little Things -- There's a ton of things that went right on Saturday. Too many to mention, honestly, but honorable mention goes to the Offensive Line, less penalties, holding Vandy to less yardage than they've put up on average this year and racking up more yardage on Vandy than they're used to.

The Bad:

1) Stafford's Play -- Look, I'm a HUGE fan of Stafford, but I've said repeatedly that his mechanics are shot when he gets in a rush. However, this past weekend, he was hardly in a rush at all, yet he managed to look at his receivers so long, that his passes were batted and it caused interceptions. Granted, he still did a lot of things right, but turnovers resulting in points like what happened on Saturday will NOT fly in Baton Rouge this weekend.

2) Missed Opportunities -- I touched on this earlier, but we've got hands on stone lately. It's incredibly important for us to capitalize on mistakes when the present themselves. To keep on winning, we have to force turnovers and create opportunities from them. Asher and Darius both dropped for sure interceptions on Saturday. Great coverage, but missed opportunities.

The Ugly:

1) Lack of a Pass Rush -- This has got to change soon. We've got to get better doing this and we've got to do it quickly. It was right about this time last year when all this turned around for us, so we need to find that spark and make it happen again. Until it does, we're cruising for some losses.

2) Off-the-Field Issues -- Ugh. So Vince Vance gets arrested for driving on a license that expired on his birthday 7 days ago, you know, the day he tore his ACL. I guess while the swelling goes down, he should've gotten his ass to the DMV. I'm totally saying that tongue-in-cheek, by the way. Also, Brandon Wood gets arrested for DUI after blowing barely over the limit. Now, the reports I've heard say that B. Wood did well against all the field sobriety tests, and the cops were really excited about busting him, but that's neither here nor there. Either way, it sucks to lose B. Wood for at least one game, when we're already razor thin on the DL. S-U-C-K-S.

3) Fan Post-Game Reaction -- Ok, I get it that people are pissed at Bryan Evans, but let it go. The fade route to the back of the endzone wasn't his fault. If you're going to blame anyone, blame the Offense for putting the Defense in the position to work with such a short field. Points were going to result out of that drive any way you slice it. Plus, that fade route was one of the best throws I've seen all year. Then, we get fans not only blasting Evans for his play (which I will admit has been less than stellar), but blasting the whole team because we didn't blow Vandy out. Here's a hint, be glad we won and let's move on from there. You may not like the way Evans played, but he's a DGD and deserves the respect anyway. Trust me, no one's beating themselves up like that guy is. I guarantee that.

So there you have it. Feel free to tell me how dumb I am.

Until next time kids.

Be safe.

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Thursday, October 16, 2008
Before I get started, is it just me or does this week not feel like the week before a big game? The problem with Vanderbilt is that EVERY team in the SEC looks at them like they're Vanderbilt of the old instead of Vandy of the new. The truth is, I don't hate them too much and I like to see them do well against other teams. Hell, I'm their biggest fan in regards to them becoming bowl eligible; just as long as they don't do it against us. I know I'm a bad fan.

So, even though I should be worried about playing yet another Top 25 team, another SEC foe and another team with a scrambling QB and scrappy Defense, I'm not. I should be worried about all these things, but I'm not. It's dangerous and crazy for me to do these things. So starting right now, I'm worried about Vandy. Worried as sh*t about Vandy.

As always, you can read Jody's Information Overload here and Doug's preview here.

When Vandy has the ball:

Vandy's Offense is probably one of the worst, if not the worst in the nation, and the stats back up the former of the two statements. Vandy is near the very bottom in Offensive statistics, but they have the amazing ability to make big plays at the right times.

Vandy's in the catbird seat of the SEC right now even though no one gives them a chance to win it all. Hell, you could say the same thing about UGA and Florida as well. Right now, you've got a helluva matchup setting up in Athens and we all know how the last two games have gone for UGA vs. Vandy. Vanderbilt runs a spread-type Offense that is a light version of what Wake Forest has done. Under Bobby Johnson, the idea is to get fast players and teach them fundamentals to make up for their lack of size. It's working amazingly well for them so far, wouldn't you think?

For Vandy, it begins and ends with QB play. Mackenzi Adams has technically been the backup for the past two seasons, but he's always come off the bench strong. In fact, he played very well against UGA last year and has played lights out in most of their games this year. Not in terms of statistics (more of that "but he's not good 'on paper' is he?"), but in terms of making plays when he needs to make plays. Just ask Auburn and they'll tell you.

Vandy runs an option-type-zone-read-type Offense that creates a lot of balance between QB rushing yards and RB (led by Jared Hawkins) rushing yards. In Vandy's win against UGA back in 2006, the QB (at that time it was Chris Nickson) ran all over UGA and we were not prepared for that kind of speed from a QB or a RB, AND NEITHER OF THEM ARE FAST! They were just faster than what we expected.

Luckily, we have a HELLUVA D-line that is absolutely gobbling up rushing yards and spitting them back up as losses. Another wonderful thing about what's going on is that UGA is facing a team that has been absolutely horrible in throwing the ball. 

So what do we do? Well, Vandy's going to try to spread us out by running a lot of 3 and 4 WR sets out of the shotgun so that we're off-balance against the run and in tough situations against the pass. The good news is, we are talented enough to keep this from being a major problem as long as we isolate the big play. If Vandy is in a 3rd and 9, or even a 3rd and 1, we have to get them off the field and keep them from converting. If we can keep them from getting into a rhythm and keep them from gaining confidence. If we get them on the ropes, we should be able to keep them there relatively easy.

We really need the Secondary and the LBs to step up and give some solid support to the D-line who will have their hands full. The key is going to be to keep passing plays under 4 seconds. Keeping a passing play under 4 seconds means we have either sacked the QB or forced him to throw to a covered man. We've got to keep the pressure on the QB at all times and trust the blitzes. Not only trust the blitzes, but love the blitzes.

When UGA has the ball:

Well, we pretty much just need to do more of the same. I know a lot of folks weren't happy with the play calling efforts of last week, but I was actually a big fan of the job that Bobo did. Aside from Stafford making a mental error or two, we actually called plays that gave us an opportunity to let our playmakers create. We ran toss sweeps, quick throws to WRs with tons of cushion and stuck to the short and medium range passes. 

Although the injury to Vince Vance sucks, I really think that we'll be fine with Boling at that position. The main thing we can't have is more injuries to the line. We are as razor thin on the Offensive Line as we were in 2003. The plan right now is to keep up the short to medium range stuff and keep those toss sweeps coming because it gets our speed guys on the outside and limits the chances for Stafford to be sacked.

Again, I know that many think Bobo did a poor job last Saturday, but that last drive by UGA in the 4th Quarter was a thing of beauty in my eyes and it's a staple of winning the Richt way.

Vandy is smallish and somewhat young on Defense, but they have a ton of speed and are very fundamentally sound. They are big threats in turnovers and sacks and we've got to be very smart with the football (aka run the hell out of it) in order to win this game. Knowshon should see 20-25 carries for us to win and we should absolutely run it to the outside to give guys like Brannan Southerland and Shaun Chapas a chance to pave the way with speed and big bodies.

Special Teams:

How about that Blair Walsh? Kid is going to be a good one, based on what we've seen so far. Hopefully the game won't be like last year's in the sense that we have to kick a game-winning field goal. But, if we do, I don't feel as nervous as I did earlier this year.

What's the best way to hide your poor kick off coverage? Well, you give your punter very little work to do (because you're too busy SCORING) and you kick the ball out of the endzone. I'm happy with that overall plan.

That also helps us keep the ball away from D.J. Moore, who is Vandy's very dangerous return guy. Yeah, we should kick it AWAY from him.

What I think will happen:

Well, right now, the spread is UGA -14.5, which means for all intents and purposes, we will not cover the spread. Vandy always plays us close and I expect Saturday to be no different. While I don't think we'll necessarily be in danger of losing, we could easily give this game away if we lose focus and forget how to play fundamentally good football.

On paper (I love that phrase) UGA is incredibly more talented than Vandy in a lot of aspects, but it's important for us to remember that Vandy has a TON of fight in them and they know how to come from behind and win. In fact, all of their victories to date have been in come from behind situations, they are on bowl-eligibility's door and they are not afraid to kick it in.

Look for a very workman-like performance from UGA. we're not going to amaze anyone, but we're going to play fundamentally smart football, grind the clock and be as efficient as possible until 60 minutes are up. It's time to put on the hard hat, because we've got some work to do to win this one.

UGA: 30
Vandy: 17

Until next time kids.

Be safe (and Go Dawgs!)

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Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Yeah the title is lame. Sorry, but it is what it is. I apologize for the lack of posting over the past couple of days and you'll notice that this week's List may be non-existent or at the very least, late. That's because my Aunt had a health scare today that took my time away. Everything looks good now, but if you haven't told the people you care about that you love them, take some time today to do so. Just my two cents.

So I know I'm not the only one that left the game a little underwhelmed, but I also know that I'm not the only one that was excited as sh*t about a win on Saturday where the score didn't indicate the total domination that was the game.

As always, we had some things to be proud of and some things to be really pissed about, so let's get to all that right now.

The Good:

1) Matt Stafford -- Aside from his two interceptions (one of which was not his fault, but the other was), he had a great day throwing the ball and tallied up his first 300 yard game of his career. Sure, we never threw the deep ball (which I think sucked more than anything), but we did complete some high efficiency passes and we got the ball in some of our playmakers' hands and let them create. That's the point of throwing it to them right?

2) The Defensive Line -- Man, is there anything better than holding UT to only 1 rushing yard? Granted, some of those yards they gained on the ground were lost due to sacks (yes, we actually pressured and sacked the QB some this game), but to hold a team with hosses on the O-line and the talent behind that to only one yard is pretty impressive. On top of that, we always have that aforementioned pressure and sacks. We all know how much I love pressure.

3) Prince Miller and Asher Allen -- Those two guys played lights out on Saturday. Asher had some really good pass breakups and there were times where Stephens wouldn't even throw it towards that side of the field, whereas Prince Miller played great as well, had some good punt returns and even recorded a sack.

The Bad:

1) Safety Play -- We've gotten burned a few times due to some blown assignments lately and this time around was no different, especially on UT's second touchdown. Part of the problem with our zone scheme is that the CBs will "release" guys into coverage expecting a Safety to float over and provide help. However, that hasn't happened as much lately as we would like. Reshad is a good talent and C.J. Byrd is as well, but these guys have got to step it up soon.

2) Lack of the Tight End -- I know a lot of this has to do with injuries, but is Aaron White so bad that we can't have him run routes at all? Maybe we're saving things for a rainy day, but having the TE not be a factor in the game at all is troublesome to me. I'm hoping that we can utilize that weapon soon because the TE is a big fixture in the success of Mark Richt's Offensive Scheme.

3) No Dagger -- There were a couple of missed opportunities in the red zone and out of it that kept us from putting that deadly dagger in the heart of UT. The game was much closer on the scoreboard than on the field and we probably left at least 14 points out there due to not making the right play calls, stupid turnovers and bad calls from the refs.

The Ugly:

1) The Injuries -- Man, it SUCKS losing another Offensive Linemen for the year. Big Vince Vance was trying his best to hold down the most crucial spot on the Offensive Line, but his torn ACL (on his BIRTHDAY no less) is a crucial blow to our young O-line. The good news is that Clint Boling is a VERY talented player and given enough reps, he might turn out to be a force on that side. In Stacey Searels we trust.

2) The Redcoat Band Drumline -- Look, this is my band dork moment of the day, so bear with me. I have NEVER heard the band sound that bad...EVER. I'm not a drummer and I damn sure don't pretend to be one, but I know what sounds like sh*t and the Redcoat Band sounded like sh*t on Saturday; especially the drumline. Trust me, I'm not alone in thinking that, either. While the drumline was trying to be cute, they were sloppy to a degree that made the whole band look bad. Seriously, if I were still in Redcoats, I would've been embarrassed on Saturday. Get your sh*t together guys.

Well, I'm sure I'll draw a little bit of heat here and there for that recap, but it is what it is. What else stuck out to you guys this past weekend?

Until next time kids.

Be safe.

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Monday, October 13, 2008
Apparently Clemson University has woken up and realized that with all their ridiculous amounts of talent, they should be winning games. In response to this wake-up call, they have fired Head Coach Tommy Bowden today.

After the Ray Ray fiasco and their numerous recruiting issues, it couldn't have happened to a better a$$hole.

"Tax increase on families making over $250,000? Yeah, that's no longer an issue."

Until next time kids.

Be safe.

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Thursday, October 09, 2008
Well the wounds have been licked and the time has come to go out and prove that 'Bama was a fluke. At least that's what we're hoping for at least. I'm actually kind of proud of the rhetoric I've been reading on the message boards. Unlike the days leading up to the 'Bama game, the Dawg Nation knows this game is HUGE for us and we're going to be in for one helluva fight. 

Now, on paper you would think that UGA should dominate UT in all kinds of ways. However, statistics don't win football games, as we all know. They might set up game plans, but the plays have to be made on the field. 

As always, you can find Jody's information overload here and Doug's preview here. On our end, though, wow about we go ahead and get to the meat and potatoes of this game below?

When UT has the ball:

Tennessee has had all kinds of problems this year offensively. If there's one thing you can say about Phil Fulmer, however, it's that despite all their offensive woes, they still have their crappy offensive coordinator. Dave Clawson has not done anything worth noting as of yet and it turns out that UT's best game offensively so far has been against UCLA in a LOSS. They have been barely worth noting the rest of the season, including an absolutely putrid performance last week against Northern Illinois. I'll say that again...NORTHERN ILLINOIS.

Let's be honest though, UT has recruited well over the years and if they have anything, they have big uglies on the Offensive Line that can make holes when necessary. On top of that, they have enough of a QB (regardless if it's Nick Stephens or Jonathan Crompton) that can hand it off to their talented, and fumble-prone, running backs.

Expect UT to not try and get too cute right when they come out of the gate. If I'm UGA, I'm giving UT the ball first and putting 7 in the box to force Nick Stephens to try short passes like John Parker Wilson. However, this time around, we've hopefully learned enough to keep from getting our asses handed to us by the dreaded "3-step drop." I swear, after reading so many articles about the 3-step drop, you'd think it was something brand spanking new.

UGA's got to get after Nick Stephens and put as many on the line as possible before the snap. Whether we bring the heat or not is irrelevant, but with a QB that's playing in the biggest game of his career (which also happens to be the SECOND time he's ever started a game), we have to make him think we're coming after his ass and scare him to death. On top of that, we need to press UT's receivers and dare them to beat us deep. The best way to combat the dreaded 3-step drop? Kill the timing by bumping the WRs.

When UGA has the ball:

People think that UT has a craptacular defense. For the most part, I would agree based on the scores I've seen and the games against Florida and UCLA. However, statistically, UT is a very good defensive team. 

As important as it is for us to come out and confuse UT's offense, our Offense has to be absolutely mind bogglingly (not a word) good. We have to be able to set up the run first (from all aspects of the game) and then pass with high efficiency. Stafford needs to really rely on those short to intermediate passing attempts and the WRs have to help him out by getting open early and catching the ball when it's forced in there instead of being laid in the basket.

The best thing to mention is that we get Brannan Southerland back after his foot injury, which has kept him out so far this year. He's the most dominating blocker we have and he will be crucial in taking pressure off of the O-line to spring those big runs. Plus, he's a great safety valve coming out of the backfield for Stafford.

In the running game, I expect us to pound the rock much more often in this game than we have so far. This game is the first in a stretch of games in which none of them are easy...for the rest of the year. It's imperative that we get Knowshon his reps, but Caleb King and Richard Samuel need to get theirs as well. Trust me, games will be won and lost on the legs of Knowshon, but he has to be fresh and healthy enough to get us through this stretch. Expect heavy rotation of RBs on Saturday.

Also the O-line has to begin playing like they've done this for years. There's no more scheming around other defenses. It's not going to happen. Those guys have got to stand up, hit someone in the mouth, protect Stafford and open up gaping holes. It's a lot to ask from a young unit, but it's necessary.  

Special Teams:

Well, Walsh is good and I think we've found some new options for punt returner in Prince Miller and kick returner in Richard Samuel. So in those aspects, I think we're going to be OK. However, our punting has got to be drastically better than it was against 'Bama and our coverage is getting there, but it's still got a ways to go.

As far as UT goes, I know that they're getting Britton Colquit back after his suspension, so you know their punts will be good. Hopefully we can GATA and block another one this week.

What I think will happen:

Look, I'll keep this short and simple. This is a game that means a lot to us on many different levels. This is a revenge game, it's a game where we have to prove to the world we weren't a fluke and it's a game where we can show the maturity that we need to show in order to make it through this brutal stretch of games.

We need to come out aggressive as hell. More importantly, we need to be aggressive from toe meets leather until the Chapel Bell rings. UT is going to play us tough because they have to. Phil Fulmer is fighting for his life here. A loss to UGA puts UT at 2-4 on the season and puts them in the Peach Bowl AT BEST. At worst, it costs Phil Fulmer his job in the middle of a season. Either way, it makes UT a very dangerous team between the hedges. 

The biggest difference? UT traded David Cutcliffe for Dave Clawson. THAT will be the difference in the game on Saturday. I fully expect the Dawgs to GATA and score our points. We'll be in a fight, but I fully expect us to play fundamentally good football, cut down on the stupid penalties and come out with a hard-fought, solid win. 

UGA 24
UT 13

Until next time kids.

Be safe (and Go Dawgs!).

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