Friday, August 5, 2011

Dawgged Impartiality

Phil Steele and I share something this season: we both like the Dawgs. Albeit for different reasons. I'm eternally obligated to root for my alma mater after a couple degrees, thousands of dollars and countless hours "studying" on campus. Steele on the other hand, likes Georgia to rebound pretty significantly. So much so that he's listed us as one of his top five favorite teams this season.

Of course, we've talked about his prognostication before. But it's worth mentioning again I think, especially after the Coaches Poll was released yesterday. Steele's reasoning is multifaceted.

  • net close losses - we lost 7 games last season, but 4 of them were close losses that hinged on a handful of plays.
  • Jenkins/Crowell impact - it may seem trendy to compare these two to the impacts of Bama's Cody and SC's Lattimore, but there's reason to believe that they could make a huge difference.
  • talent - he likes the talent we have, even after some additional personnel losses since he first predicted we'd win the SEC East.
  • schedule - as light as a side salad once you get through the conference opener. This is perhaps the biggest reason to have the Bulldogs as contenders.
  • Aaron Murray - a returning QB who is coming off a successful season is a proven commodity.
  • teamos especiales - Steele rates out Special Teams as #1 in the country. Take that Fabris!
In the end I don't know if this gets me anymore excited for the upcoming season. I'm excited for Georgia football, don't get me wrong. But I'm still in a I'll buy it when I can see it type of mood. Especially as far as feeling any level of comfort thinking about playing in the GA Dome twice this season.

However, it does unmuddy the waters so to speak. There are no excuses. Richt can't make the ball bounce his way once play begins, but most everything else has set up pretty well so far. Someone ask Claude Felton if that extra large shipment of bubble wrap for Jenkins made it to Butts-Mehre.

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Sidenote: Once the Coaches Poll came out yesterday I went back to see how accurate Steel was back in February with his early prediction. He had Boise State pegged just right at #7 and had the top four exactly. For whatever that's worth...

1 comment:

Dawgfan17 said...

I would claim that 6 of the 7 were close. The MSU and USC games were two score games but it was not until very late in each that they "pulled" away. It all still amounts to a 6-7 record so take it for what it is worth but 1-2 more plays by the offense and 1-2 more by the defense in each game and we are looking at a much different season. Hopefully this years Dawgs will be making those key plays.