Bernie is a believer in Joe Cox. We haven't seen 14 start but one game. I'm proud to say I was in Oxford for that one start, but remember it mostly as an ugly game with a tremendous tailgate.
All things considered, ol' Joe is really only known in Athens for the winning TD against Colorado in '06 and being the red-headed backup to Matthew Stafford. In fact, it's conceivable that there are some Dawg fans out there that had to google Joe Cox after Stafford announced and Bobo and CMR started their ringing endorsement for the Charlotte native.
This kid's a winner. No, really. He hasn't lost a game since he was learning how to drive. He may not have the arm strength of our previous starter, but he's not going to be the type of signal caller that fails to manage games. He'll put us in position to win.
But the main reason I'm a believer in 14 is a reason that is getting a lot of play since Stafford announced his decision last Wednesday - Cox is a leader.
Now before you start to make an ass of u and me, let's get this straight - Stafford is a leader. He did it in red and black every game with his arm.
I'm sick and tired of all the blowhards that label him a loser because he didn't bring us a championship and disloyal because he didn't finish out his eligibility. If you're bitter about these guys leaving, get a life! They're Dawgs. 'Nuf said.
Cox however, is a leader with his voice. For a guy to be a backup on the depth chart and still have the respect of the players speaks volumes. That should translate into leadership through his actions as well around September 5th.
For a run down on our starting QB, check out Bubba 'n Earl's very thorough work up.
Early entries into the NFL draft used to be non-existent. Just ask Herschel Walker.
If he doesn't answer the phone, read this John Underwood articlepublished in March of 1982 after the Georgia tailback had finished his sophomore campaign. Great article.
And if you've read Walker's book"Breaking Free", Underwood's piece will seem eerily familiar; like a glimpse into a time when no one, not even Walker himself, knew what he was going through.
You want a playoff? SNL is rarely worth a tune in anymore (my humble opinion), but this is pretty funny. The W jokes toward the end are a little creepy from this guy, but it was worth the looksee. Maybe it'll convince you the BCS isn't so bad....
If you think Mark Sanchez will rise above Stafford in the draft QB pecking order, think again. This season's stats may favor the USC Trojan, but Staff showed in his three years he can handle adversity within the pocket. His blindside protectors this season alone dropped like flies.
Did anyone catch the (very) quick "tap" on the elbow Carroll gave Sanchez as he left the stage...before Sanchez addressed the media? Coach Carroll was pissed.
Rumblings from Athens that CWM got into quite the heated exchange with his safety after learning Wednesday of Jones' decision to turn pro.
Wonder if the phrases "arm tackle" and "second day pick" were hurled around.
Captain Chelsey "Sully" Sullenberger. His heroics in landing that airbus yesterday in the Hudson were astounding, even more so than his two sweeps of the plane to make sure his passengers had all disboarded.
Captain Sully, you sir are now in charge of our flight to Tulsa in September.
Andy Landers. 800 wins. Wow!
The NCAA says his victory total stands at 718 because of 82 wins at Roane State. I say take a bite of one of the coach's cigar stumps and give Landers and us Dawg fans a break. BTW - he was something insane like 34-1 against D1 schools while at RSCC.
Back at the number 800, Landers is the second fastest coach to reach the feat, behind some coach at Tennessee. And check out the GeorgiaDogs pic with the throw back to a time with the wide tie and before the slick backed hair. Well done coach. Here's to the next 800!
Teresa Edwards for making it to Athens for the momentous occasion. The four time Olympic Champ never forgets her roots.
And lastly, Reshad. It always pays to make your grandparents happy. They helped raise you and in December you'll repay them with a college degree. That will be a moment worth more than millions of benjamins. Not just a hug, one of those big 'ol, grandmamma, back breaking hugs. Enjoy!
To wrap up, I know a lot of Dads venture into Bernie's cyber hole on occasion. And some of you have daughters...like me. True or not, here's hoping nothing like this ever happens to you gentlemen.
Trivia this week brought to you by the new AT&T, check out their unlimited text messaging plans. Satisfaction not guaranteed for fathers of daughters on class trips near a beach...where a fraternity is having their annual Beach and Beer Retreat. The Lady Dawgs recently moved into a new 3400 sq ft locker room area that includes a theater style meeting room and lounge area. Which team utilized the space from 1964-1987 as their locker room? Reader with the winning comment gets a shotgun to use to protect their daughter.
Enjoy the weekend reader(s). I know it's cold. But not as cold as the shoulder Mark Sanchez got yesterday.
Reshad Jones has come back full circle and will stay for the 2009 season. Brett Jensen writes that the Georgia safety told members of the coaching staff this morning that he had changed his mind and wanted to return for his redshirt junior season.
You had to at least wonder when the confirmation of his leaving didn't break late this morning that maybe Martinez and/or CMR had grabbed his ear after a good night's sleep.
Jones was one of the members of the highly touted 2006 class that included fellow 5 star recruit Matthew Stafford and was the top rated safety in the nation. A product of Booker T. Washington, the state's top recruit chose Georgia over a slew of other offers after being recruited heavily by Rodney Garner.
Although Jones has yet to have the breakout season many were expecting back in February of '06 when he signed his LOI, few doubt the safety's potential. This season he was second on the team in tackles after starting 12 of 13 games. Many fans have grown impatient with his inconsistent play, but he also led the team in interceptions. If Rennie Curran was dotting the i in Columbia by forcing the Mike Davis fumble, Jones was crossing the t when he sealed the victory by means of his interception on the chickens' last drive.
Assuming the starting safety's heart is behind this final decision, it is good news for Dawg fans and surely has coaches around Butts-Mehre breathing a sigh of relief.
It is just a matter of time before the production follows the potential. And this Dawg Blawgger can't wait...
Coach Mark Richt and staff have picked up three extra scholarships in the last week. Stafford, Moreno...and now Asher Allen has decided to attend the NFL combines this winter.
Most of us were not surprised when Stafford and Moreno cleaned out their lockers last week. But shame on me for having Asher all but ink'd in as returning for the 2009 campaign.
Honestly, this really hurts the Dawg defense. I realize that Stafford and Moreno were star players and accounted for just south of 90% of the offense this past season. And I also realize that replacing them will not be easy.
But for my money, losing Asher is a much bigger hit to a team that needs defensive leaders returning. Allen is an experienced cover corner that subscribes to a very physical style of play. His stats were down this season (only 44 tackles and no INTs), but he played the last five games with a broken hand. (Note: Allen had an INT against the reptiles, but a penalty negated it. What else?)
You only have to remember back to the Capital One Bowl to understand Allen's significance. Martinez used a lot of man coverage and the Spartans frequently threw in Allen's direction. Not sure why, they just did.
Allen finished with a team high nine tackles and also recorded his first sack of the season. MSUreceivers had a hard time getting off the line cleanly against him. And Hoyer and Cousins had an even harder time completing passes against him.
Asher joins Ramarcus Brown and CJ Byrd (both seniors) as departing players from the secondary. Assuming Bryan Evans stays at safety, there will be a lot of young, raw talent fighting for supremacy of the DB depth chart this spring.
We saw a lot of Brandon Boykin in Orlando. The coaches also speak highly of redshirt freshmen Baccari Rambo's athleticism and Makiri Pugh's talent. Asher himself likes Sanders Commings (appeared in three games, no stats). Another possibility I guess would be moving Vance Cuff over from WC as Prince's backup.
Regardless, the competition going into spring at RB and now SC will be fierce. Come to think of it, with Shanahan being shown the door in Denver, maybe Champ can come back and use that last year of eligibility...??
Reshad Jones, Jeff Owens and Geno Atkins are on record as saying they are back next season. I guess that will become official after Thursday's deadline. No more surprises...right??
Today's Dose of Irony
John Kincade of 680thefan discussed this last week and even presented it to Stafford on the air after the QBs press conference last Wednesday.
Ohh! The Irony...
Fifty years ago the Detroit Lions traded away their all-star QB Bobby Layne after he finished the season on their '50's version of the Injured Reserve list. So upset as he left town for Pittsburgh he placed a curse on the franchise. He supposedly declared that for the next 50 years the Lions would claim no championships.
Since that day, the Lions have amassed the worst winning percentage in the NFL and have recorded just one post-season win. Oh! And they went o for 16 this season.
Is the curse over? Well...the 50 years are. The irony is that the Lions need a QB and have the first pick in the draft; the Dawgs' QB just declared himself available; and let's see...that's right! Stafford and Layne both graduated from the same high school, Highland Park.
If this ironic tidbit plays itself out, it could be the curse of Matt Stafford. The Lions put the awe in awful.
And Stafford didn't take the bait Kincade was casting. After all, the Lions could be the team to take Michael Vick off of Blank's hands once he finishes his Leavenworth vacation.
You've all likely seen the ad in the Athens-Banner Herald that
Knowshon paid for last week. It was a class act by a young man that hopefully left an ounce of that trademark energy in his UGA locker. In case you missed it, click HERE.
And Knowshon, if my humble blawg is ever graced by your eyes and you happen to read this...NO! Thank You!
Greg Reid has narrowed his choices and is evidently not swayed any closer to choosing Athens by Asher's departure. The Lowndes star has narrowed his decision to Athens, Tallahassee or latecomer Tuscaloosa. He wrapped up a "great" visit to FSU this past weekend. Next is Bama before visiting the Classic City on the 30th.
With Branden Smith's commitment Georgia has already landed one of the state's top defensive players. To land another top DB in Reid, that was once committed to the Meyer Machine would once again help CMR and staff seal the border...and give the Dawgs a tandem at defensive back to be reckoned with.
There's no truth to the rumor that Coach Kiffy used a fake ID last weekend at the Knoxville gas 'n sip. The AP is reporting that Kiffy's wife bought him the wine coolers he was drinking at the Justin Timberlake concert.
Derrick Favors, arguably the nation's top round ball player projected to play center, will announce his decision tonight. UGA, Tech and NC State are the finalists. In Georgia's favor is Trey Tompkins, a former teammate of Favors. Not in the Dawgs' favor is a series of second half collapses, most notably Tech. Bernie's prediction: Favors reteams with Tompkins this fall and saves Felton's job for at least another few months. (WRONG! - Favors favored North Avenue TS)
And this just in: Spurrier hasn't pulled a scholarship from a targeted player in nearly a week.
Well wishes go out to Buck Belue. The former Dawg signal caller, turned 680thefan radio jock has been diagnosed with Bell's Palsy. He's expected to return to Kincade's side as soon as this afternoon. Bell's Palsy is a paralysis of the facial nerve and is not life threatening. To pass along your own well wishes, here's Buck's Blog.
Buck Belue = DamnGoodDawg
Site of the Week
For a good blend of Dawg news, video, cyber links and other things Dawg, check out GeorgiaBulldog.com. BDB guarantees it's worth the trip.
Visitor of Note
BDB welcomes its first visitor from India. Not sure how long he or she stayed. But according to the report if you Google "water things down", BDB has the fourth hit from the top. And it was a good one too. I remember it fondly.
And lastly, congrats to Bryan McClendon. I think this is a great hire. CMR stands by his word in wanting Georgia blood and enthusiasm in his players and his staff.
There are rumblings about McClendon being a receiver coaching RBs and that being a position in transition with the absence of Moreno. I hear that.
And CMRcould've gone out and lured some big name to Athens that may or may not have worked out. In McClendon he had someone who is vested in all things red and black. I think he'll bring some energy and experience to the sideline. And will turn out to be a great recruiter as well.
Mat Drills start soon. Better go hit the gym BDB readers. Coach Van Halanger isn't going to accept your lame excuses with that orange cheese doodle dust around your mouth. Drop the remote...er...the mouse, and strap on the spandex.
Asher Allen has decided to leave UGA for NFL riches. TotalUga is reporting that Allen has told members of the coaching staff that his decision has been made and he plans to pursue his professional career a year early. If true, it creates a big hole in Georgia's secondary. Arguably larger than the ones on offense created by the two departing offensive stars last week.
Not good news for Dawg fans. Or for a defense that struggled through the 2008 season.
The AJC's Tim Tucker reported earlier today that Georgia's junior cornerback was mulling over the decision to turn pro after requesting a projection from the NFL advisory board of his draft status.
Allen has been less than specific about what he needs to see from the board for him to forego his senior season. But many mock drafts list him around the 7th best DB should he decide to leave campus. The earliest it would seem he would go would be mid-second round.
Allen had a solid, yet unspectacular season in '08. But Coach Willie Martinez recently revealed that his cornerback played with a broken hand from the end of the LSU game through the end of the season in Orlando.
There is certainly talent behind Allen ready for the challenge, but it is talent as yet unproven.
Stephen Garcia's main competition as starting quarterback will not be in spring practice as Chris Smelley is transferring to another school to pursue baseball as his sport of choice. He has yet to decide which school he will be travelling to, but evidently has decided that his days as Spurrier's whipping boy are behind him.
No big deal, right? It gets stankier.....
Tucker senior linebacker Jonathan Davis had his scholarship revoked by the Gamecocks; Assistant to the visor, Shane Beamer admitted that it was wrong according to Tucker head coach Franklin Stephens, but said that South Carolina had to do what was best for the Gamecock football program. Stephens has since banned any Carolina coach from Tucker's campus.
By the way, Tucker won the state title this past season. And...it was one of many over the years. They have some players.
Pretty bad. Here's worse...
Senior wide receiver Freddie Brown is transferring and it is rumored that any senior players who are not projected as starters are being encouraged to transfer. That nugget comes from Brown's daddy, Freddie Brown Sr.
Now, to be fair most of the players who are not returning have been with the program four years. And in Brown's case, will finish their degree later this year. But if they want to play in their final year of eligibility they will need to transfer to a Div. II school or a I-AA.
If true, the message is clear: we're no longer interested in you and want to make a run at some younger guys...cuz we may be beyond our 25 already. And it would really help if you weren't around...thanks.
The other side is that Spurrier and staff made mistakes with these players in recruiting them and now want the room to make more mistakes.
Or more last ditch efforts at some key recruits that were off of their radar.