Saturday, November 3, 2012

Some Dawgcast for your Gameday

If you're around the tailgate or just waiting around the house for the game to start, the guys at the Dawgcast have finally gotten into the bunker for a double episode - Florida wrap up and Ole Miss Preview. (NSFW)

What to look for - Ole Miss

Big game for the Georgia Bulldogs. Here's my keys to the game.

  • Ole Miss has a very balanced offense. I think we try to bottle them up on the ground and force them to beat us through the air. We need a good game from our safeties. A real good game.
  • Last year in Oxford Grantham's defense exploded for 4 sacks for a loss of over 40 yards. Last week we had 5 sacks for exactly 40 yards of lost yardage. Would really like to see the defensive intensity carry over from last week.
  • We're averaging 50 points at home. Since we left our seats following the Tennessee win, only 17 points a game. Was the early home stretch a fluke? Or was the road woes a fluke? Most likely the truth is somewhere in the middle. But I sure wouldn't mind a lot of kickoff coverage this afternoon.
  • Special teams was mostly improved in Jacksonville. For the most part Ole Miss is a team that can beat you if you help them. Any special teams miscues can mean a very tense fourth quarter.
  • The normal Homecoming kickoff is an early one. Tomorrow should e a nice treat getting the early of the prime time Saturday slots. After a month away from Athens I expect everyone should be ready to bring the noise early and often. That's not wishful thinking. At all. I don't think.
Bonus thought: I think Keith Marshall goes off this afternoon. It will be awesome!

Hunkering down on Homecoming

What better way to start off Homecoming than with a vintage video. In this one that Dawg19 has graciously uploaded for us, we go back and relive the year that stands above all others. The only thing better than the music and the highlights is the commentary and memories it stirs up.

Have a great day in Athens, or wherever you are hunkering today. And if you are around town make sure and stop by the Redzone downtown to meet Rex Robinson and Scott Woerner who are promoting the 1980Dawgs DVD.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Friday Misery - of AkBears and cowboy boots

Shout out to the official attack squadron of BDB, the HSL 51 Warlords. Tomorrow will make two weeks in a row Jason has had the pleasure of getting up at 4:30 on a Sunday morning over in Atsugi Japan to watch his Dawgs play.

And we thought WE were unhappy about the noon kickoffs.

Welcome Mat
Helllloo Rebel Black AkBears! Welcome to our fair state. We hope you'll find your accommodations more than acceptable. After all, you're always so hospitable when we visit Oxford. To help you enjoy your stay we've gone to the trouble and expense of constructing a helpful guide. It can't be easy traveling all this way from the 1960s. These tips should make for a smoother transition.

You're welcome.

- Our hotels are equipped with something called "Wi-Fi". Ignore the signs and don't ask, unless you want your mind blown.
- Our water fountains are not only de-segregated but they are also not used. At all. Instead we use these recyclable plastic bottles that make us believe the water is cleaner and better for us. And yes, we pay for them. Again, don't ask.
- Let me go ahead and apologize for our gas prices. You'll need a whole week's salary just to get through Atlanta. BUT....our gas stations are now equipped with hot dogs packed with nitrates!! The stale bun is free with purchase.
- Once on campus you're going to see a LOT of beautiful young ladies in cowboy boots. Don't ask them if the hay's in the barn unless you want a red solo cup of beer thrown in your face.
- Please don't embarrass yourself by complaining about the length of the game. It's actually being televised. That's right, it happens a LOT more frequently than it does where you're from so the commercials lengthen the experience.
- While you wait, enjoy our "jumbotron". Or get a head start on recycling your stadium experience byproducts. You don't want none of our Stadium Defender...TO THE FACE! TO THE FACE!!

Trap vs Wrap
Georgia is coming off of an emotional win in Jacksonville. We've seen it time and again, the Dawgs fall flat against a lesser opponent and either eek out a win or stumble around the full sixty minutes. People are saying this Ole Miss game is dangerous because we have so much to play for and the RebelAkBears have everything to gain. In short, we're hungry, but are they hungrier?

A storyline that has been mimic'd time and time again...It's a trap!

Even in sweats Penny is smokin'. She's got the look and the casual I don't really give a shit what you're saying as she walks on by.

We need to look and act like Penny tomorrow. While Sheldon Ole Missy is standing there saying Hey look at us with our SEC winning streak and new found attitude we can just walk on by saying Is that all you got? 

I mean look at you Ole Miss. You were this great and legendary the field at least. You've still got so much to be proud of with your campus and two-thirds of the Mannings. And now you're a cute and cuddly teddy bear. You dumped Colonel Reb in a Grove dumpster and turned into this schizophrenic hot mess that's both cute and really frickin' annoying. Make a decision already and stop wasting our goddamn time. It's been years and you're still quibbling. I guess that's what you get for canning Coach Cutcliffe.

So no, this isn't a trap game. This is a wrap game, as in wrap up the East and then party on the Plains next week. We left those damn gators crying in the St. Johns. Poor Driskel hasn't slept all week. Meanwhile Pinkel's had a grad assistant driving him around in a golf cart since Sunday while he slugs down boilermakers and calls his quarterback a sissy. It's kind of like what Shawn Williams did for us last week except with a .26 blood alcohol level and a lot of Cheetos' dust on the old man's fingers. 

The Dawgs haven't played in Athens in weeks. The crowd will be beyond frenzied and the retired cheerleaders have all had double doses of Geritol. Hell, I'm bringing TWO dates for Homecoming!! It can't get any more real and I can't be any more serious...

Wrap this y'all. Take care of business and let's hunker down!

The WLOCP '12 Tailgate video

You remember that guy with the sideburns that was on TV behind Aaron Murray post-game? Well, we got him in this one. We also got Derrick, some guy named Amp disguised as Tony...and Uncle Bo!! Unfortunately Robert was too busy defending his turf to be captured on film. But we do have more dancing (this time on tables!!) and evidently I play drums.

Also, you're going to see me do something disturbing in the blooper outtakes at the end. I only ask that you withhold judgment until I can explain the situation in its entirety. Enjoy.

As always, Dawg fans win the tailgate. As for why I would pour my drink into a gator fan's cup, lemme explain what you didn't see and more importantly what you didn't likely hear. It was a long argument. She wanted a refill but her cohorts refused to help her out. I'm a gentleman raised in the South, but I do have certain limitations when it comes to providing alcohol to floriDuh fans. I assured her I would give her the rest of my drink if she gave me a "Go Dawgs!. After much deliberation she obliged.

Quid pro quo. No harm and no foul. Especially since I had just absconded with said drink from a gator tailgate. So before the Dawgs even took the field we were up 2-0. #winning

Countdown to Kickoff - Ole Miss

Al Keck previews the game 'tween the hedges tomorrow.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Ole Miss - causes for concern

Hugh Freeze's first team in Oxford has proven that they are no longer going to just roll over and be satisfied with moral victories. They're a scrappy bunch, their defense flies to the football and they bring a very balanced offense.

On offense Ole Miss relies on the diminutive legs of junior Jeff Hall and the two way threat of quarterback Bo Wallace. If you've seen them play you already know that this is a much better offense than the one we faced last week. Hall can't carry the team on his shoulders to the tune that a Lattimore could for 30+ carries a game, but he's shifty, strong and has good burst. Through the air lanky wideout Donte Moncrief is Wallace's primary target averaging 13.85 yards a catch and has five of the teams 12 receiving touchdowns.

The true challenge to stopping Ole Miss on offense is the same as it has been for the last few games: contain the quarterback, make them earn every yard and gradually wear them down. Grantham's unit showed they could rise to the challenge last week. The bar is raised Saturday afternoon in Sanford though.

On defense I'm only going to throw one thing at you: 3.89 yards per carry. That's what they're giving up. Mighty Bama rushed 34 times for just 125 yards in their win against the Rebels a few weeks ago. They try to make offenses one dimensional. So we'll need a good game from Murray and his receivers.

Additional concerns/casual observations:

Tree - something just isn't right with #9. He plays with speed and his God given talent but he's also missing assignments, especially in pass defense. On one series Saturday he just missed an interception that would have easily been six points, then he completely whiffed on a tackle of Gillislee in the open field. A few weeks ago I passed this things off as getting back in the groove of things. Now I'm wondering if he'll find it.

The short of it may be, our linebacker rotation needs some tweaking. Herrera hasn't been the same since the suspensions were up. And Ogletree hasn't been the same player that we grew so fond of last season.

Secondary - Swann has turned into an SEC caliber starter. Smith needs to rise to the occasion on the other side so we can use Commings in the slot on nickel coverage.

Controlled aggression - we contained Driskel well Saturday. But I believe a lot of that had to do with Florida's incompetence on offense. Whether it was Coach Pease not taking advantage or Driskel just making the wrong read, we continually over pursued Gillislee on the read option which left Driskel open to make one of his signature runs like he had in previous weeks. Luckily the gator QB never burned us. But Ole Miss' Bo Wallace is surely getting an eye full on film this week. So Grantham's crew still needs to play with intensity and reckless abandon, but has the added challenge this week of maintaining their assignments and not reverting back to their old ways (read: Lexington).

College football's color barrier

It's not the best kept secret around the southeast that Charlie Strong never emerged as a head coach all those years because of his skin color, and perhaps more importantly his wife's skin color. As ugly as the truth is, a mixed racial couple is too big of an obstacle for many college football boosters. Especially in the South. And the fact that it isn't a well kept secret is part of the reason this piece by Mike Bianchi falls a little flat for me. 
Croom, breaking barriers in 2003 in Starkville MS (via)
[Strong] was interviewed by the athletic director at a downtrodden program in a big-time southern BCS conference. He didn't get the job, he was told later, because he was a black man married to a white woman. Sadly and senselessly, an interracial marriage cost Strong a chance to become a head coach and cost that school and its fans a chance to hire a man who could have transformed their woebegone program.
(woebegone = Vandy, btw)

Bianchi goes on to raised volumes of inherent racism and color barriers. Good and decent stuff, especially for those with more than a decent understanding of humanity and at least a third grade education. When asked about the issue directly years ago Strong challenged the writers in the room:
"You guys have been reporting as long as I've been coaching," Strong said. "You know the issue. So you all just write about it instead of asking me. You all know the answer."
A resounding "YES" was the answer then, is the answer now but hopefully won't be the answer for much longer. In fact, maybe Strong himself can be college football's Great Black Hope — the man who finally helps eradicate the lingering stigma that often still surrounds black head coaches in college football.
True words and dramatically writtern. But truly the entire piece just scratches the surface. It doesn't reach the depths of the issue, the pain and suffering that ESPN's SEC Storied does in "Croom". I hope you've had a chance to watch it. While Bianchi appears to give it lip service, the documentary of one of the SEC's greatest players and coaches paints the full ugly picture against the backdrop of an exemplary man and an excellent football coach.

Here's the trailer. Check your tv listings to see when it will be replayed. Where the writing falls short, the video is both compelling and gripping.

SEC Audibles - Coach Richt

Coach Richt discusses the Dawgs' Homecoming opponent, Ole Miss.

SEC Audibles - Coach Freeze

Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze discusses the upcoming game against Georgia in Athens.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Final thoughts on the WLOCP

First, a pictorial essay. Taken after the head coach gave the referee more than earful following Blake Sailors bloody nosed scrum on the muffed punt late in the first quarter, this photo shows Dawg fans all they needed to know. So much going on, mainly that Richt is pushing his intensely aggravated defensive coordinator back to the sideline. Also, obscured by Grantham's somehow still perfectly placed microphone, Blake sailors is like WTF bro? My nose is a bloody mess, and not in the British way either dude! You've got Cornelius Washington coming in too, as well as Sheldon Dawson; C-Wash gave an inspiring speech before the game and Dawson KTMFO on the gators second kick return. All the while the referee is trying to decide if he should throw another flag due to the fact that Richt is clearly holding, mouthing off and playing without a helmet. (Luckily said ref was out of flags at the time and reached for nothing but a palm full of air.) I've re-watched the full 60 minutes of gator fail again. It was nearly as glorious in high definition Driskelian as it was in the live Muschumpian version. Sorry this is a day or more late, because I know we're ready to move towards Ole Miss. I think I'm still on St. Simons time. Regardless, here's a couple of late thoughts.

- Haven't mentioned the Zander sighting yet. This is a guy that many thought had long seen his last down as a Bulldog, and he comes off the bench to have his biggest game. With Hall hurting and Hicks back home with a concussion, this was huge.
- I know Jarvis earned every accolade (and more) he has received thus far for his performance, but my favorite play was Cornelius Washington blowing up, I mean absolutely demolishing the Florida tackle right into Driskel as he was throwing. That was the one that ended with a Swann interception. Just a terrific play from start to finish and one that encapsulates the game pretty well.
- Offensive line did a great job. Looked even better on tape than they did from the stands. Richt was right on the call in show when he half teased that they really gave Murray too much time. Hope this helps them puff out their chests a bit.
- Kudos to Murray for standing in there and delivering, especially on that 4th quarter drive. Ben puts it best here if you want a complete thought on it. But on what was shaping up to be one of his worst nights (thanks mostly to him, but also to some receivers to be perfectly fair), he delivered like a champion.
- Todd Damn Gurley. I re-watched with my 8yo. She summed up the whole game pretty well by saying "That's my boy!!" whenever Gurley carried the ball, and "That's my man!!" whenever Jarvis flexed his muscle.
- Just a really ugly game that Georgia came out of smelling like a rose. I know a lot of people are upset that the media is making this out to be a Florida loss more than a Georgia win. But truly, both teams have earned that distinction. Florida was a shell of a #2 team, and Georgia has more than earned the reputation of a team that pales under the lights. The challenge now is to go out and prove this wasn't an anomaly. 

So tomorrow I'll have plenty of Ole Miss stuff up. Is it really "a trap"?

1980 Dawgs in town for Homecoming

For Immediate Release - Oct. 30th, 2012

Two chances to meet some Georgia Football Legends this weekend - The folks from "1980 Dawgs" will be in Athens for Homecoming weekend, promoting their outstanding documentary DVD set ( ) as part of two separate autograph events.   

Friday, 3pm - 6pm:
Legendary Coach, Vince Dooley, will be meeting fans and signing copies of "1980 Dawgs", along with his various books at the Red Zone in downtown Athens.  

Saturday, 11am - 3pm:
All Americans  Rex Robinson and Scott Woerner (plus possible other members of the 1980 team) will be signing copies of "1980 Dawgs" and talking with fans at the Red Zone.

Where: The Red Zone, 155 E. Clayton Street, Downtown Athens.  

For more info about "1980 Dawgs" see

Coach Dooley, Rex Robinson and Scott Woerner were all very instrumental in the making of "1980 Dawgs".   The documentary was released last year and has received great reviews from Bulldog Nation.  It's an incredible collection of stories told by 27 players, coaches and others affiliated with that special team.  Those stories are combined with exclusive game footage clips and radio calls by legendary announcer, Larry Munson.  If you thought you knew all about that season, you'll be surprised.  Many of these stories have never been heard before.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Bulldog Hotline redux - Florida

The general theme last night was one of congratulations and concern; many pats on the back and atta boys for good measure, then plenty of questions on Murray's struggles to get things going. This one from Steve in Carlton I thought sung a familiar refrain to a tune I've hummed a bit here.
Steve in Carlton is concerned about Murray. Noticed that he doesn’t run the ball as much as he used to. Mentions the illegal forward pass penalty. Looks like he settles down some after he gets a good run. Richt agrees that he used to run more. Remembers being surprised at how successful and how quick he was against the speed of the conference. Made some great plays with his feet, but also missed some opportunities that he didn’t see because he was running out of there too quick. The more he understands the system the more he’ll stand in there and make good throws. That’s part of the reason his passing stats are so high. Had a lot of time thanks to the offensive line. The only thing he said to Murray at halftime was that he has a time clock in his brain and knows when the guy is supposed to be open. Make the 1st, 2nd and 3rd read and then it’s time to throw it away or like Steve said, take off running. What happened was he was often going through his reads and still had time left in the pocket. And then you’re throwing too late or across the field. He got it straightened out in the second half.
That response takes me back a bit, to a time when I recall the coaches saying they are impressed by his running ability but need Murray to trust the play's development. Which begs the question: is he trusting it too much?

Perhaps only Aaron can answer that definitively. But I know I'd like to see both some more designed and improvisational runs from him.

Murray's 22 day growth

I found this to be an incredibly fair piece by Legge on Aaron Murray's last few weeks, culminating in a very rewarding yet impossibly pain staking second half.
Aaron Murray didn’t have to beat Florida – he just had to not lose the game in the second half. Quarterbacks at Alabama are celebrated for doing just that – being so-called game managers. Murray doesn’t get the benefit of that. Georgia quarterbacks are expected to win games… not just manage them. But he needs to be given credit for this: He did just exactly what he needed to do to win, and in sports that’s all that matters.
via Dean Legge, DawgPost

Monday, October 29, 2012

Taking a stand

I'm still absorbing everything from Saturday. Started re-watching the game some last night. Glad to see the tension and emotion was just as apparent through the tv screen as it was in the stands.

What I'm most proud of is how relentless the team played as a whole. I attribute some of that to Shawn Williams' week in the news, but it also had the feeling of getting that whole Columbia SC mess off their backs. Not just that, but that is where the tension really started to build. And evidently Cornelius Washington gave quite the speech to the team as well. But regardless of where that energy came from, I was proud to see where it went - sixty minutes of unbridled rage against our mortal enemy.

And while catching up with the family yesterday left me little time to set up any posts so far for the week, I did want to share something with you. It's always pretty cool to get recognized. And my quick post from Athens Homer Dawg's Red and Black photo the other day evidently spread fairly wide across some message boards and such. So much so that a paper from Florida asked to use it. The exchange went something like this:
Tampa Bay Times rep - We would be interested in using the photo of the full page UF ad that ran in the Georgia paper - the one in this post:

Did you make the photo?

If so, would it be ok for us to use it in tomorrow's paper?
Bernie - Kindly eff off sir. I am a Dawg, in the business of hunkering down. 
Getting a link in a market that big would've been pretty cool. But taking a stand felt like the right thing to do at the time. And seeing my team play the next day only reaffirmed that it was the right and proper decision.

Go Dawgs!


Post note - there's been some interest of taking out a "response" type ad in the Florida student newspaper. To make it just as significant would be pricey. But I sent an inquiry just to see if there would be space available there like there was at the R&B. No reply as of this posting....take that for what you will.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sunday Thoughts - the Jarvis hates gators edition

A few thoughts before I hit the road and lose cell signal along I-16.

- I'm sure y'all have noticed, but winning in Jacksonville is soooo much better than losing. Assuming he even went to sleep, Richt is waking up a very happy man.
- Defense was lights out. Incredible performance. Very aggressive (lost track of how many Florida players were helped off the field) and continually dictated the play.
- When I cast my ballot next week it'll have Shawn Williams' name on it.
- Nice to see Gurley rush like a grown ass man. And nice to see the pistol back in the playbook.
- Although Murray kept finding ways to keep Florida in it, Bobo had faith in him. Challenging their man to man coverage along the far sideline took chunks of yards at first then paid one huge dividend.
- Muschamp might be a big fat O-fer in Jacksonville, but he knows that you can't give the ball away that many times and win.
- But as usual, the game was won in the trenches. Offensive line had a great game and the defensive front set the edge and disrupted their backfield about as many times as the ball was snapped.
- All that being said, I'll admit that under 10 minutes left I really thought we'd find a way to lose. That's just the way things usually roll in Jacksonville.

But not this year. When Richt's team needed a win most, they got after it for sixty minutes. Go Dawgs!

Location:Tolomato Trl,Saint Simons Island,United States