Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Silence speaks volumes

While neighborhoods across the land are filled with the sounds of fall (crunching leaves) and
All Hallow's Eve (BOO!), the sounds around the Georgia and Florida athletic offices have been muted. The memories of the end zone celebration are still vivid. But the words that may translate that recollection have been locked away, tight. The bad news is that the media has not been able to provide any fodder for the Bulldog Bulletin board. The good news is that the media has largely had to focus on the game itself.

While seeing Trinton Sturdivant shake, rattle and roll with 50+ teammates may be my most lasting memory of last year's GA/fla game, it was Knowshon's 188 yards and 3 TDs that contributed the most to the win. And another performance like that may be necessary Saturday.

This year's game is HUGE. We've heard/read the experts this week trying to decide if this is the biggest GA/fla game of all. I say it is, undoubtedly. Sure there have been others with similar implications and national rankings, but this just seems bigger. Maybe it's the anxiousness of seeing how each team will play after last year's drama. Maybe it's the fact that the game that has been circled on the schedule for both teams is finally here. At the beginning of the season there were hopes on both sides that this might be a #1 vs #2 match up. Both teams lost at the end of September within hours of each other, but have taken care of business since then. Florida in grand style, the Dawgs in more workmanlike fashion.

Some things that scare me a little:
  • Meyer's special teams are always special; James returns kicks like it is a matter of life and death for him to reach the end zone; and if you hadn't heard, they blocked some kicks last week against UK
  • Georgia's lack of pass rush is already exposed, but could be devastating tomorrow; the front four have certainly suffered through some injuries, but there's a time is a season when the excuses must take a backseat; that time was about a month ago
  • these gators don't crawl, they SPRINT! Meyer recruits speed and this is his fastest.
  • Meyer and the gators have something up their sleeve; if it's a gimmick, sobeit; but if they do I think it is likely something they are counting on to impact the game .....something to make you go - "hmmmmmm."
  • Is there really, TRULY a chance we come out in red pants? The black jerseys - VERY cool against Auburn in '07, a side story against Hawaii and a disaster against Bama; if CMR uses the color of pants to geek us up against floriDUH ........isn't he stretching a bit too much?
  • The Over/Under is well into the fifties, and most are betting that it goes over; I don't like our chances as much in a shoot out; the less we see of #15 the better
As I get a little closer to boarding Delta flight 1667 for Jacksonville, I realize there were a couple more things to clear out of the BDB closet. So real quick -
  1. Lemme thank Mac via Dad for this photo gallery of everything that is ......unique? .......about SEC football fandom. Editor's Note - the red-haired, bare-chested gentleman is NOT a Dawg, he's a Hog.

  2. John Daly, drunk at a Hooter's? Yep! Here's the proof. I guess he's really working that endorsement.

  3. Another thank you to my mother-in-law for an early birthday present that was delivered yesterday. She consulted my wife who consulted Nama and, long story short ....Bernie now has Cornhole! For my few readers unfamiliar with this game of skill, strategy and teamwork here is a preview for the movie that is coming to a screen near you! For some pics of Conner and Ainsley throwin' down, click here.
  4. For the first time in a LONG time, the DAWGS flew in and out of Ben Epps for the LSU game. It saves the team and the coaches a few hours as opposed to flying into Hartsfield. Hopefully that helps in the preparation for this SEC East elimination game.

  5. Leave it to CBS to find the ONE sober LSU fan in Death Valley towards the end of the game last Saturday and put him on air long enough for Nama to get out his iPhone - - - - - >

  6. And lastly, Knowshon needs 13 yards to pass the legendary Sinkwich on UGA's all-time leading rushers list. He needs 75 to pass 1,000 for the season.
SO! Deep breath. Here we go ....... I think it is fairly obvious that our offense matches up better against their defense than our D against their O. Martinez has fared pretty well against Meyer's spread attack, but this year's gator is much faster and their emotionally sensitive QB is healthier this year and has a more diverse supporting cast. Mainly, the gators aren't relying on Tebow's legs (and heavy shoulder) as much to get those yards on the ground. Moore and Moody are the more traditional size RBs, but have been nicked up a bit. So Demps and Rainey have filled in admirably, despite their size. Meyer and OC Mullen clearly attempt to get these speedsters in space and let them go to town. It would be nice to see a red-jerseyed LB dart through and lower the BOO-YAH on these guys.

If it turns into a shoot-out, I still give us a shot at winning. But I think to ensure a win we have to be the more physical team, control the chains and the clock. Let Tebow rest up for their match up against against Vandy next week and give Knowshon the ball early and often. Meyer says that #24 makes our O-line look better than they are, well let's smack 'em in the mouth and open up some holes that even the gator coach's ego could fit through. Stafford should fare well through the air, especially if the running game sets the table.

PREDICTION TIME- Walsh has made some big kicks, it's time for the biggest of his career. Dawgs handle the gators with a workmanlike effort that makes Meyer write another book in the off-season complaining that Jacksonville is not a neutral site for him anymore and outlines his reasons for moving it to Utah. We keep our aspirations for a trip to the SEC Championship game (and our dreams of anything bigger) alive. Make sure to tip your bartender!

Dawgs 24

Swamptrash 21

This week's trivia brought to you by: The Corn Hole Outlet(.com), where non-athletes go to make their dreams bigger! Last year's Heisman winner is a one of a kind QB. And I'm sure replicating his tendencies and talents in practice to help your defense prepare is a daunting task. Who "filled Tebow's shoes" on the scout team for the Dawgs this week in practice? An extra bean bag if you can add what the Dawg players were chanting after this player's skills were displayed.

If you're in St. Simons, save a booth at Gnat's and some fried dill pickles for me. And as always, be safe.


Monday, October 27, 2008

I'll Gamble on the Dawgs!

Turns out the "Tiger Bait" bit back. Hard! In my prediction piece Friday I underestimated the offense and overestimated the defense, I guess. Didn't like seeing all of the long plays go against us, especially the long run for a TD at the end. But it's hard to fault a D that puts 14 points (the difference in the game BTW) on the board. Gamble started the game off in grand style by showing he could read the eyes of Jarrett Lee easier than a recipe for crawfish etoufee. Pick 6, Touchdown Georgia! Up in the booth, Gary and Verne hadn't even taken their suit coats off yet .......... Gamble shows his sportsmanship as well by waiting another 3 hours before returning another pass for a TD. Two interceptions returned for touchdowns by a linebacker was good enough to tie Gamble for an NCAA record AND good enough to send the ragin' cajuns out of Death Valley to drown their sorrows in swamp juice a little earlier than planned. Oh! And Gamble also had 13 tackles. Not bad for an Ellerbe fill-in.

BDB beat reporter Scoop McGee caught up with Les "was more" Miles after the game. Scoop: "Coach Miles, your thoughts?" the Hat: "I WILL be the head coach at LSU, I have no interest in talking with anyone else." Scoop: "So I can consider this a Scoop McGee exclusive?" Miles: "I've got championships to play, and I'm excited about the opportunity of my DAMN strong football team." Scoop: "Even your secondary that just got torched? Any truth that your D backs are not talented enough to handle being placed on an island, blitz after blitz?" Mad Hatter: "It was unfortunate that I had to address my team. I really have nothing more to say." Scoop: "Will Lee or Hatch start next week against Tulane?" the Hat: "I represent me in this issue. Please ask me after...I'm busy" Scoop: "Coach you seem distracted, aloof, or possibly just dazed. Haven't you used this speech before." Miles: "Thanks. Have a great Day."

Scoop then reports that the conference ended with Miles growling about giving up 2 TDs and nearly a hundred yards rushing to a linebacker. I suspect a difficult week ahead in Baton Rouge.

So, attentions turn to a game ....let's see.....let me find my notes......what game is next?.......OH! That's right. Florida! The annual cocktail party has been renamed by BDB as The Annual Convention for Successful UGA Students and Alums and another 50,000 or so Jean Short Wearin' Tebow Lovers. Catchy, but kinda long ....... Let's put that to our readers. Tell us what you would rename Dr. Adams Politically Correct, PoliteFest Social Event with a Football Game Teaser.

So many of you have asked, it's only fair that I share: yes, I will be able to participate in Halloween festivities with the kids AND take in the game. Thanks in part to Delta. However, the catch was to be able to do it without even one carry on bag. Thanks to Ann and Da Crew for taking my bag down to St. Simons on Thursday. Feel free to use my toothpaste. So that I can pull this off though - it's time to clean out the BDB closet of all extra "luggage". So hang on, this could get ugly!

  1. Trivia winners. Yes plural. No more sudden deaths. BDB has more sponsors now than we know what to do with. So why not spread the love around. I always have thought of Nama as a pure-bred Dawg, but I'm beginning to think he may be part bloodhound. He's hard to shake off the scent when it comes to trivia. He, like Mr. Trammell was a little conflicted about whether College Football's heaviest trophy was the Fremont Cannon or the Golden Boot. Certainly the cannon is heavier, but the winner of the Battle of Nevada gets the cannon for the next year until the next game. The Golden Boot is a trophy that goes with the team to its athletic offices for eternity. Plus, we didn't even know there was football in the state of Nevada. Ann McElroy correctly answered with the Golden Boot, as did Allen Randall. Adam - sorry, the Old Oak Bucket ......Indiana/Purdue winner .....? Nope. Better keep the Ipod Touch in the backpack during class. BUT - you are the BDB's first "Follower". What an honor! It all adds up to bonus links for everyone!! Enjoy this classic from last year's celebration laden win for the Dawgs. jorts = jeans + shorts
  2. I was invited last week to have lunch with my youngest daughter. Her Pre-k happens to be through our church and they called the big event "Pizza with Pops". I arrived at the door and Ainsley jumped into my arms. I hugged her tight and then extended my hand towards her teachers. And then it happened. "I read your blawg." Uhm....huh? Turns out I have readers I wasn't aware of. Some of BDB's subscribers forward their bi-weekly editions to other Bulldawg faithful. Jenn evidently sends it to Ainsley's teacher. Cool! So a special shout-out to Mrs. Wendy at McKendree UMC. You and Mrs. Kim do a great job. And thanks for not sending home artwork covered in glitter each and every day. Glitter gives me the creeps.
  3. I also had the chance to visit Conner at lunch a week or two ago. It was a Friday and she was (of course) dressed in RedandBlack. At her school you get to invite a friend to the visitors table if your parent comes for lunch. Conner had Kennedy join us for chicken tenders and chocolate milk. I couldn't get Kennedy to talk about college football, but that may have been because she couldn't really hear me since she talked pretty much the entire time. She did at one point place her foot up on the table. "I like your pink boots, " I said quickly as she was swallowing a bite of broccoli and drawing a deep breath. She then explained that they were pink COWGIRL boots and that her dad's favorite team was the Dallas Cowboys and they had a dog they named Dallas and Dallas sometimes eats table food and when you feed her hotdogs she poops them out....... there was a lot more that followed, but my nearly middle aged brain could only process so much of Kennedy's diatribe at a time. Oh! And did I mention she was the cutest little girl in pink COWGIRL boots I have ever seen? See for yourself......
  4. Some great links you may or may not have been aware of that can help the reddest of Dawg fans stay current with little more than a click: The Anti-Orange Page includes Jim from Duluth's weekly transcription of the CMR call in show, not to mention a Lewis Grizzard archive. CMR's Page shows recruits (and fans) all of the ins/outs of University of Georgia Football, as well as his personal side. TotalUga is a new site published by Brett Jensen. A lot of the info is free, subscribers get the full access.
  5. Jim Halpert finally proposed to Pam. And he did it at a rest stop ……in the rain ...............AWESOME!!

Shout outs!

  • Knowshon is as adept at getting shout outs as some BDB readers are with trivia questions. SEC Offensive POtW!
  • Darryl Gamble as the SEC Defensive POtW, he had to be an easy selection.
  • The four customers we had Saturday for our garage sale. Without you, all that work would have been for nothing. Yawn!!
  • The Willis' for a great party that included Hurricanes, Jenn for closing out another Burnette win at cornhole, Nama for the Apple Pies, and Cord ......... it was good seeing ya!
  • All my Wahoo in-laws for spoiling the Homecoming at the North Avenue Trade School.
  • And last but never least....my Florida "friends" from last year's game to be named later. (see picture insert) I hope we get to sit next to each other this year ......... maybe you'll enjoy the game a little more.

  • Urban Meyer .......just because.
  • My Clemson-following family that didn't bother to read my post-bowden firing blog. For shame!
  • The SEC for scheduling next year's annual game who's name is yet to be determined the day of Halloween. Even Delta may not be able to help with that one.

Enjoy your Florida week Dawg fans. Make sure you save those Snicker bars Friday night for those cute UGA cheerleaders and decked out linebackers that come to your door. And go ahead and practice slamming the door on those little yellow jackets and gators. "This is the Department of Family and Children Services, intake." ......"Yes I'd like to report a case of child endangerment."