Saturday, September 10, 2011

Saturday morning thoughts - Carolina

There's no secret the key to stopping the South Carolina offense is preventing Lattimore from doing what he did to the Dawgs in Columbia last year. And despite my misery (and because I have a faction of family that are Pirate fans) I keep getting reminded that ECU stood toe to toe with Spurrier's boys. For most of the game last weekend.

This game is typically close and low scoring. But with all the offensive talent on the field tonight, if the game is low scoring it probably means that the defenses rose up and the offenses tightened down. 

On Georgia's side it likely comes down the whether our players play inspired ball or they tense up while suspecting the worse case scenario in the stands. On the Carolina side, if they grab a couple big plays early this one could get ugly. So I expect OBC to come out with a shot in the barrel. Survive those as misfires or just glancing blows and Georgia could stay in this at least as long as last year.

Still, the most intriguing thing about this game is that both teams have much to prove. Richt's squad for all the obvious reasons and Spurrier's because...well, he coaches the Gamecocks and they always have something to prove. Especially when it comes to their overall record against the Dawgs. And yet both were largely the picks to be the main contenders for the SEC East.

So simply:
  • For Georgia, did we bury past demons this week along with the Nike Pro Combats?
  • And for South Crackalacky, just how small are you still?
My cock is small.
h/t Anti-Orange Page

Friday, September 9, 2011

SEC Today - 9/9/11

Friday Misery, chapter 1: the Dawg Day Doldrums

I could use a hug. I'm just in a funk over this season and it's only one game old. This feeling has been there for months. The depths at which this depression has sunk into my gut has deepened exponentially this week. And I feel like the coach is in an even worse place. And that tomorrow we're going to see the season implode.

In a word, help! I can't shake it and every now and then I have this fleeting slap in the face - Hey you dip(crap)!! It was just Boise. They're like the #5 team in the country. It's not like you lost to Florida, again. I let that settle over me but it never breaks through the despondency.

Herschel, part I 
As I said yesterday, I truly enjoyed watching the documentary the other night. But once it was over my depression was only deeper. My relief from the 2011 season was only 60 minutes long. At 9:01 I felt worse than I had before it started.

I'd wait in line for hours just for a minute with this guy. And we had players that couldn't manage to get out of bed for a private session with him? One of our school's greatest ambassadors, the greatest player to ever grace ANY gridiron...dumbfounded. Speechless.


This is the central issue. I know his days are numbered, and I'm ok with that. Truly. What really gets me is he's acting like he knows it too.

We go way back. I dearly, genuinely love the man. If he drank beer and cursed more in public we'd be the perfect "bro-uple" for a situational comedy. We'd high five a lot. Shoot pool. Eat wings and play poker. But I love my University's football program more. I don't want a dead man walking running it. It's been long enough.

In a perfect world we'd go on a tear like the one Hamp reminded us of and ride that damn bus all the way back to the GA Dome. Ben Jones and Kwame Geathers would hoist Richt on their shoulders to carry him off the field where he'd retire a winner.

Instead it feels a lot closer to the things ecdawg's been hearing. It's enough to make me feel like I slept with one of Nevin Shapiro's yacht strippers with nothing on but a smile. Sick. Just. Shoot. Me.

The 2011 Season
I DID MY JOB DAMMIT!!! I refused every ounce of kool-aid. I scoffed at the mere notion of believing any snippet of hype. Every time Coach Richt wanted to hug it out, I kept him at arm's length. WE'RE ON A BREAK DUDE! GET OFF MY LAWN!!

And then last Saturday...holy crap on a cheezit...we looked like boys. And not just little boys sitting in their classroom on those little chairs. Little ones caught in a busy train station where everyone else is moving fast and seems to always know where they're going. It sucked, and yet I had to sit there. I'd waited 9 months to cheer from my seat in sec 345, row 15, seat 2. I retreated to the GA Dome's concourse once for a 10 minute break. Then trudged back to take the rest of my medicine.

I've got at least 8 more games that I'm committed to. I'll be at every one. I'll never boo, and I'll always bark. And yet....I want to crawl in a hole, fall asleep and wake up next August.

Herschel, part II
We'll never see a player like him again. Even if someone with similar physical and athletic attributes comes along in my lifetime, it'll be some snotty brat that's been spoon fed everything he's ever been given.

To watch Herschel was to see what full contact ballet would be like. It was both smoking guitar strings and a finely tuned symphony rolled into one. I'd seen size and I'd seen speed. But both? Together? In one perfect football body?

What's more are the memories of a team that had this spectacular player and yet he never let himself get above those around him. Even when he yearned to join the Marines and then got sucked into professional football, he didn't want to let his teammates down. And together they rose from a collection of outcasts in the junkyard to the most dominant team of the early 80s.

I want my kids to have a Herschel Walker to admire. More so, I want them to have a team that wins games, leaving the excuse making for everyone in their wake.

The Players
I feel both sorry for them and at the same time wanna wring their necks. It can't be easy to be sold on a program, sign the letter and then have to listen to fans boo messages from grown ass men who for God knows what reason think it's ok to tell a player he's a "POS no good football player".

As absurd and gutless as that fan behavior is, I still get frustrated with some of the things I read and hear. If I had been blessed with half their talent I'm sure there would be days when I would be so sick of practice I'd be ready to burst. But at the end of the day it's a free ride. A tremendous opportunity. 

And always a privilege to wear the G.

The Fans
The lunatic fringe is louder than any squeaky wheel I've ever heard. They're full of fail and there isn't a muzzle big enough for that fat trap that's always open...spewing garbage and righteous indignation. I have to live with these people for the next year? You can't escape them. They sit next to you at games. They're the first (and usually the only) dumbasses that call-in shows put on the air. They're at work, the gas station, every restaurant. Don't even think about logging onto Twitter or that BookFace thing. They're even at church.

God help me! Every ounce of my being just wants to go out back, fire up the grill and sip a cold one. Relax. Breathe deeply for just a few moments. But if I do they'll probably come out of the trees. Descend on my deck and start regurgitating all over my marinated steaks.

As Herschel would say, Just shet up! For one I can embrace this misery. Alone. I'm in a dark place. The only thing to pull me out of there is a win. 

Trivial Update - Chicken Kickin

#ThursdaysRTrivial ep 72 will be right back after this PSA: Remember, South Cracky has won more NCs in August than any other team.

#ThursdaysRTrivial episode 72 "If it clucks..." Welcome to the Twitter Twivia show everyone. I'm your host Davey Pollack. REPLY back your answer for a chance at an ACTUAL prize. Everyone remembers my INT in the Gamecock endzone in 2002. But the game was won by way of a Thomas Davis fumble recovery in the waning seconds. Name the chicken that fumbled it.

It was the last week of 'actual" prizes. Skelly has been kind enough to offer some tunes to Matt, Shan and this week....Scott! Shan actually beat him to the punch, but as it clearly states in the TrT rule book winners can only claim prizes that are given outside of three weeks apart.*

As Scott says, at this point he'll take a win in whatever way he can get it. Y'all go visit Skelly's Facebook page and get your hunker down.

To close this out, let's take a look at the highlights from that game. But first, remember to pause for an hour until the lightning passes.

h/t pr1sonmike

*rule book = greasy Waffle House napkin. And rule only applies to actual prizes. Normal "fabulous" prizes can be divvied out as if they were  flu shots in February.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

SEC Video: Countdown to Kickoff - South Carolina

My God, a freshman!

A perfect phrase for the perfect play. Also...the perfect call, for the perfect player.

Like many of you I'm sure, just finished watching Storied "Herschel Walker". If you didn't get a chance, I won't spoil anything for you. I would simply urge you to see it the first chance you get.

Herschel was always a freshman. The term itself implies little perceived value, a person that with the right cultivation may grow into something the world can use. Herschel was bullied by peers growing up as much as he battered himself inside. He later chiseled himself into a premier athlete, a scholar and model young man. But for every hurdle Herschel cleared...even as the world began to marvel, with jaws dropped and voices raised...he couldn't stop to allow himself to bask in his own greatness.

Regardless of your feelings on dissociative identity disorder, and regardless of how true of a Dawg fan you believe you are, you have to recognize Herschel's struggles and his inner demons to truly understand who he is. Actually, scratch that. I don't know that anyone will ever truly understand who he is, but we can appreciate the road he has traveled a little better by witnessing his reading his listening to him speak.

I was 11 years old when Herschel pulled into town. As my wife and I watched the documentary we basked in each replay, every piped in Munson call and each failed tackle. My God, a freshman! It began to dawn on me just how fortunate we are to have lived as Dawg fans during his time on Earth. Certainly, our kids will not see another player his equal. Perhaps their kids.


My oldest once asked me, "What's so special about Herschel Walker?" It may be a question you've scornfully received from a rival fan. But my girl's tone was one of innocence, wanting to understand the pictures on our walls and the feeling in my voice when I spoke of him. I remember stopping what I was doing, and just standing there. I didn't know how to answer that.

Of course, it would be easy to spout off statistics and memories of plays where he tangled with mere mortals. I could try to impress upon her the fact that he earned two Heismans he never received and once ran against the nation's toughest defense with a separated shoulder for 150 yards...2 touchdowns...a MVP honor...and a national championship. 

But that doesn't truly answer her question. She continued to wait on my response and it eventually dawned on me that it was easier to start with what he is not.


My God, a freshman! A trait most of us share is one that has always eluded Herschel Walker. As a kid he was an outcast, to peers and grownups alike. By the time he surpassed everyone athletically and academically he had lapped everyone who was "normal". You see, even a normal football player takes the winter off from competition. A normal collegiate running back in 1982 stayed for his senior year of eligibility, even despite the fact that he had proven everything there was to prove by the time Bill Bates managed to get back on his feet in Knoxville. A normal retired NFL player eventually succumbs to a sedentary lifestyle.

Herschel Walker is not a normal person. I am thankful for that as a Dawg fan. But I'm in awe of it as a human being.


"Shoot em for they run now!" Spinning the hits! It's dedication hour here WKBD. This one goes out to ol' Bobo from Bernie himself.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

SEC Video - Coach Richt

Previews the South Carolina game and his team after the loss to Boise State.

SEC Video - Coach Spurrier

Previews the game against the Dawgs and updates his team after the ECU win.

SEC Today - 9/7/11

Update on Dr. Machen's statement regarding TAMU and a preview of tonight's Storied series on Herschel Walker.

Ags hit a snag...?

Filed under "Don't count chickens"...TAMU is accepted but there's a condition.
Statement from Dr. Bernie Machen, Chair, Southeastern Conference Presidents and Chancellors:

After receiving unanimous written assurance from the Big 12 on September 2 that the Southeastern Conference was free to accept Texas A&M to join as a new member, the presidents and chancellors of the SEC met last night with the intention of accepting the application of Texas A&M to be the newest member of the SEC. We were notified yesterday afternoon that at least one Big 12 institution had withdrawn its previous consent and was considering legal action. The SEC has stated that to consider an institution for membership, there must be no contractual hindrances to its departure. The SEC voted unanimously to accept Texas A&M University as a member upon receiving acceptable reconfirmation that the Big 12 and its members have reaffirmed the letter dated September 2, 2011.
If you want to follow the latest news on this front, you have to follow Aggies beat guy Billy Luicci on Twitter. He's been all over this from the start.

TAMU just can't seem to get around third base with Mike Slive, what with Baylor and Beebe walking in the room, turning on the porch light...coming downstairs pretending to get a glass of water from the kitchen.

Olivadotti's Mystery Player - Isaiah Crowell

Inside LB coach Olivadotti hinted that there's someone we haven't thought of that might help fill the void left by Tree's injury.
 Inside linebackers coach Kirk Olivadotti hinted at more than just Mike Gilliard, Amarlo Herrera and Jeremy Sulek playing at injured Alec Ogletree’s inside linebacker spot. "There’s going to be even more guys, guys you haven’t even thought of yet," Olivadotti said. Asked who? "Maybe me," he said.
I think it's safe to rule out Samuel. We've thought of him. Probably not Jenkins or Boykin. Dent's in the NFL...and I think Singletary is coaching in Minnesota or something.

I've got it! With Rambo returning it's freed up Commings to play corner as well. What does that do? It allows you to take one of your guys with a #1 jersey off the field and put the other one on.

So Saturday Crowell will indeed Mike.

Warning: paint drying in Sanford this weekend

The offense's solid efficiency and eye bulging stats have lead Coach Bobo to this no brainer:

It's not the no huddle so much as the lack of hurry in it. What's the point of it if the defense has been there waiting on you to line up for 15-20 seconds? 

Of course, I guess this also means more shotgun. Which probably means more sacks. Based on what everyone saw Saturday there's no reason Ellis Johnson isn't going to send 5 or 6 each play to try and get to Aaron Murray. So why not huddle up, then come to scrimmage in the I. It might save our quarterback some bruises. And as a bonus it might actually help move the ball down the field.

Locker Notes - Sakerlina

SEC opener. The conference's red-headed step child is finally more than just spittle from Lou Holtssshpsh's mouth. Lattimore - 37 carries for 182 yards and 2 TDs. Garcia - two and a half six packs before breakfast.

Spurrier...evil. Once hung half an hunnerd on the Dawgs 'tween the hedges. Never opposed to kicking a team when they're down. 

Before they tee it up, let's give em some notes.

Le Sack le walked on too.
Tree - Feel better. You're missed.

Dallas Lee - You've heard of chicken n' waffles. Pancakes go with them just as well.

Malcolm Mitchell - This secondary from Chickumbia ain't seen your speed. Go get em.

Jeremy Sulek - Believe like Rudy, but play like Tardits.

John Jenkins - Games like this are why you came to Georgia.

Bruce Figgins - You used to open up the pool for him. Now we just need you to open up the holes.

You know the drill. Here's your sharpie.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

SEC Today - 9/6/11

Executing a gameplan

Had the pleasure of attempting to fill some very big shoes last night. I've always appreciated the work Jim from Duluth did for the rest of us on the Hotline transcripts. Now I truly do.

The process of it allowed me a chance to really look at something from a fresh angle. @waterbulldawg asked a good question about rolling Murray out, abandoning the use of the I-formation and the overuse of the draw. Only the first part made the air unfortunately. I would have loved to hear why we went away from something that was working in the second half and why the draw play continued to be called.

But in the opening of the show Richt said that he didn't see a problem with "effort or game plan". The problem he said was in execution.

Before I go any further, here's a little warning Reader: I'm not in a good place right now, but I'm determined to not let that turn this blog into a cess pool of discontent. That being said it is clear to me that our talent was not out matched Saturday, it was our coaches. A gameplan can be many things. Included in that is the fact that it can be something that is not working. At which point in time good coaches scrap it and go with something fresh.

And you know when that hits a premium? When you're playing a top ten team. You know when else? When you're playing the Evil Genius.

Coach Bobo, take a well thought out plan into the booth late Saturday afternoon. But also take a loaded handgun. Cuz you might just need to shoot that sumbitch and put it out of our misery.

Looking for a silver lining

There are vast differences between the two. But in terms of discomfort, the loss to Boise reminds me of the 2009 loss to Okie State. For one, it was the first game of the season against a powerful offense. You never know what you can really expect in the first game. And that goes for whether you are a fan or a coach.

Given the results of the two seasons since that trip to Stillwater, I'm probably even more disappointed in Saturday night. It doesn't help that we can't really fathom how bad a loss it was until the end of the season most likely. Boise State should run the table and eventually meet another formidable opponent in a bowl. As a matter of comparison, the Cowboys went on to a 9-4 season in '09. 

And while we're comparing, I think I can draw some positive from the loss Saturday. After returning from Stillwater we were faced with our SEC opener in South Carolina. It was an epic battle that we were able to pull out at the end with Garcia and Co. knocking on the door. As opposed to last season when we opened with a breather against ULL and then never matched the intensity/physicality of Carolina.

More on this later in the week, but I believe there are yards to be gained in the gamecock secondary. Can we patch together a unit that can protect Murray enough for him to get through his progressions? Can they get physical with a tough defensive line in a way they never really were able to against Boise? 

Did losing a game against a ranked opponent prepare us for the greater task at hand Saturday in Athens? Regardless, somebody get Jarvis Jones a helmet with a chin strap.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Monday's Meatloaf - as laborious as it is nightmarish

I had a nightmare the college football season started and all I got was more heartbreak, turmoil and angst.

Woah there Rachel Richt!
I endured 9 months of pure hell with nothing to comfort me but the painfully embarrassing Liberty Bowl memories. I survived a train ride among comic characters and modern day hobos on MARTA. After a hot summer where a glass of kool-aid woulda been especially refreshing I resisted the temptation, even as I tailgated under the hot Atlanta sun.

After turning over a new leaf back in January, I think I did just about everything I could to make the relationship between Coach Richt and myself a healthy one. Leading up to Saturday I thought the Boise game would be a first step towards an eventual reunion. I was cautiously optimistic I guess. Which is to say I hoped he would pick up the check after our casual coffee. Maybe we'd set a date for a milkshake next week.

I mean, we wouldn't hold hands or anything. I'm still focused on 50 days in. But it'd be nice to get together and see how things were, talk some...see if our goals were once again common. Instead it turned out the nightmare was real.

So to be perfectly clear Rachel Richt...we're still on a break.

Today's Ingredients
Still looks better on ecdawg.
  • Weiszer has a quick preview of the pivotal SC game.
  • The sounds from the locker room after the loss Saturday night...some ugh!...some hope, and a little self reflection.
  • Question of the day: Coach Bobo, do you actually watch the plays that you call?
  • Question for the week: Coach Richt, do you watch the plays that your offensive coordinator calls?
  • Meanwhile, Socrates is ready for Grantham to deliver the goods that were promised.
  • While I hoped to gain some knowledge about our tackle football team Saturday, here's what I actually learned: nine months is sometimes easier to endure than a four hour game, and drunk coeds have a hard time keeping their balance on MARTA trains.
  • Groo has some excellent commentary and analysis on the idea of finishing what you start.
  • Want a thorough break down of the game? Ben Dukes does it quarter by quarter by quarter.
  • Kit admits it's bad, but implores us to not make it worse.
  • PWD offers his thoughts on Boise State. I must say I'm eager to see as the season progresses just how good Boise State actually is. Unfortunately, I don't think we brought the best out of them Saturday night.
  • the Senator sees some positives from opening with an actual opponent as opposed to a cupcake.
  • Mike would like Grantham and Bobo to get on the same page.
  • Shout-out to Tanner who has BDB as his lone bookmark on his phone. That's either dedication or very poor judgment. Actually it's probably both.
  • And a shout-out to Krisi for organizing the Tweetgate. It's always a good idea to get Dawg fans together. Saturday was no exception.
I tortured the heck out of a poor chicken yesterday. I called it game day prep for Saturday. Soaked that thing in beer and seasonings then gouged it with the rotisserie before roasting it real slow for about three hours. To really finish it off I took a knife to it and then fed the family.

There was much rejoicing. We even recreated the State Trooper Fist Bump.

Come to think of it, a nice chicken dinner Saturday night would go a long ways towards smoothing some bumps in the roads that connect the Dawg Nation. Wouldn't repair every pothole, but would make the trip home a little easier to bear.

Hang in there Reader. If nothing else, we get to see those silver britches again 'tween the hedges. Until then, here's an extra napkin. There's quite a mess to clean up.


SEC Video - 2011 SEC Rewind Week 1

The more things change...

...the more they stay the same.
There is no change in the pecking order at tailback. Junior Richard Samuel got the start, but freshman Isaiah Crowell was more effective and ended up with more carries. Richt indicated that pass protection is still an issue for Crowell.
Ok. Whatevs. 

H/T Jen, same as it ever was

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Tweetgate Spread the Red

Dawg fans always show up ready for football. Just like Nama's always ready with his pocket moving picture recorder thingy. So here's a little clip of what he got from Tweetgate 2011 outside of the GA Dome yesterday.

Sunday's Pro Combative Thoughts

As I face the morning sun that somehow did rise this am, I realize I have select few coherent thoughts. The first of which is that this is going to be a long week.

- There's still no consistency among the coaches, playcalling. In the simplest of explanations, we put a dagger into their defense with that Boykin end around and never bothered to twist it a little.
- Richt's staff was out coached. BSU made better adjustments which is a facet if the game that continues to elude our sideline. The Broncos going to a no huddle and quick sets totally negated our rush and aggressiveness.
- Sometimes it's hell living outside the arena. But we can take solace in that we're large in number. Dawg fans turned the Dome into a frenzied and electric venue. With red spread all the way to the rafters.

As difficult as last night was, can't wait to get back tween the hedges and see those silver britches. And that beautiful red helmet.

- Posted using BlogPress from Bernie's iPhone

SEC Video - highlights from the Dome

- Posted using BlogPress from Bernie's iPhone