Saturday, March 30, 2013

Second Spring Scrimmage (picture)



Taylor moved to end, nose locked up?

The team will scrimmage again this morning. And it appears as if the nose guard spot has been solidified well before GDay. At least in terms of the rotation.

Redshirt freshman Jonathan Taylor has been moved to defensive end. This seems to show Grantham's hand in terms of who will compete for the top nose spot this August.
Mike Thornton, who is 6-foot-1 and 289 pounds, is holding down the first-team nose guard spot with 6-4, 315-pound junior college transfer Chris Mayes behind him, but Thornton estimates that the Bulldogs playing nickel defense—not the base 3-4—about 70 percent of the time last season. Thornton can play nose or end.
Georgia also signed junior college defensive lineman Toby Johnson and Newnan defensive tackle De’Andre Johnson.
Taylor said it was a big adjustment because of the mindset of being the nose but he sees the ability to make plays at end as a pass-rusher that fits his skill set.
Taylor has told the media he's around 325-330 pounds. I'll leave that as food for thought...

Friday, March 29, 2013

Israel Troupe arrested

The charges are pretty serious, eight counts of felony fraud. Being held on $32,500 bond.

Troupe was drafted in the 31st round of the MLB draft by the Rockies in 2007. Given how his career at Georgia played out it always made me wonder if he should've gone to the pros out of high school. I don't recall his degree, but I remember he graduated a couple years ago before his last season in Athens.

Whoever the victims are I hope they're able to recover any losses. And for Troupe's sake I hope there's more to this that can exonerate him.

Emerson fills in the details.

Indoor practice facility, comprehensively speaking

You can't get a more comprehensive analysis of the indoor practice facility argument than Groo's post yesterday. Take a few minutes and read it in its entirety. He's compiled all the research and addressed the topic completely.

Regardless of your gut instinct on the issue, read this and re-examine. Make sure you have facts to support your position.
Recruiting ends up being one of the biggest reasons to have an indoor facility. They’re supposedly heavy artillery in the facilities arms race, and being able to hook up a game console to the display inside your facility is all part of the package designed to impress and awe prospective players. Schools still manage to sign highly-ranked classes without such a facility, but we can’t deny the wow factor.
Even though it'll probably happen some day, I still say no. Sure, it'll be used occasionally to escape bad weather and frequently to show off to recruits with a hard on for shiny things. But more often it could be used because it's just too hot or because there's a threat of a rain.

That's weak sauce. I mean, how often do we play tackle football indoors y'all?

Busted Bracket options

We all know the feeling. Some of us better than others. You pore over the March Madness bracket for hours, days even, and perfect it just in time to click submit. The feeling of satisfaction is like a long pull from a very nice cigar as you look forward to testing your selections against others in the pool for the next three weeks. You smile as you tape it to the wall with visions of big numbers and expertly picked Cinderellas advancing game by game.

But 24-48 hours later it's over. Done. Your bracket is next to a piece of burnt toast at the bottom of the trashcan. What now?

A little KISS!
Well, as we head into the second weekend of the big dance, here are some options to satisfy your need for competitive tension; that exhilarating feeling of money being on the line, or maybe just bragging rights on display at the office water cooler.
  • Drink a beer everytime Raftery screams "ONIONS!!" When you're out of beer, tequila shots.
  • Try NBA basketball. Make side bets with your buddies on which player travels with the ball next, which team puts any effort whatsoever into defense, how many hours it takes to play the last two minutes.
  • Did someone say ponies?!? PONIES!! Get a head start on the 2013 Derby schedule and check all 2013 Derby betting options, maybe while you're mixing a mint julip. Also, challenge your wife to see who can tie a bow tie faster.
  • Didn't get a buzz from the "ONIONS!!" game. Try NASCAR. Shotgun a Coors Light for every left hand turn. If you make it to under 200 laps to go, order a pizza to celebrate.
  • Then there's hockey...
Or you can just wait for next March I guess.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Ol' Ball Coach has hisself a hissy

Sounds like Spurrier missed his tee time yesterday. Poor guy.

via Josh Kendall Twitters

Hang in there SteveO. I'm sure the whole damn media conglomeration will be in attendance next spring to see Clowney. Hell, I may even go tailgate for that one.

The Michael Adams farewell tour

Did anyone else's invitation look like this?

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Murray, Champ, Megatron and...Godsey?

This is quite the photo bomb from last night's Peach of an Athlete awards banquet. Stolen from our quarterback's it just me, or has George Godsey really aged?

Tuesday's scrimmage notes get "defensive"

Richt says the defense won the day, but we know the stats he provides are about as accurate as most 40yo's listed weight on their driver's license. In the ball park, but not an exact science. And then he hands the media the scrimmage notes which in turn are passed on for our digestion.

  • Most notable, Ray Drew had quite a day. He said he just went out and played and he's pleased with his progression. I'll say! Had a couple sacks and was basically "unblockable" according to some players. 
  • Granted its just a spring scrimmage, but if you can get pressure and containment from a defensive end in a base 3-4, that's a very good thing. 
  • Jordan Jenkins added a couple of sacks as well.
  • Also good to hear there was a scuffle or two. Evidently Hutson Mason and Amarlo Herrera had at least one disagreement. Mason also bristled a bit over some of his stats with the media, but overall seemed to enjoy being the #1 QB for the day with Murray at an awards banquet. 
  • Tray Matthews continues to get a lot of praise from teammates on both sides of the ball. He and Sheldon Dawson appear to be pulling away in the secondary. And Ramik Wilson continues to solidify an inside linebacker spot.
  • Speaking of inside linebacker, Ryne Rankin wasn't listed in the stats but he bragged a little about getting a pick. Good on ya!
  • Offensively it looked like Chris Conley and Keith Marshall lead the charge along with Mason.

You can pore over the stats as well as a video of Mason talking about the scrimmage HERE.
I'll admit. I was pretty damned impressed with the defense when I first started reading those stats and the tweets from the media. Then you have to stop yourself and think - how much of this was the coaches pumping up the defense a little? I'm sure those stats (like any spring scrimmage) are subjective to a generous degree.

But I like the fact that Mason was upset. On one hand it tells you a little about the passion he plays with on the field. And also because that's a factual, objective point that tells you the defense was doing something right. Quite often too evidently.

CMR has lost control over NFL visitors

NFL coaches and execs are pitching tents all around Butts-Mehre these days says Emerson.
Seven different NFL head coaches have been in Athens over the past week, either meeting with Georgia draft prospects, or talking about them with Georgia coaches, or likely doing both. And of those seven head coaches, five of them hold picks in the top 10 of the first round.
No doubt Jarvis has been the talk of the town. But the wealth of talent coming from Georgia in next month's draft has brought enough eyes to go around. Not a bad idea if you're an NFL coach to be in Athens right now. And pretty good PR for the coach the resides there year round.

Can Jarvis make a good 
cheesesteak? I miss cheesesteaks. (via)

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Connor looks to shut out cancer, again

Two weeks ago you may have seen Connor McMahon featured on local news as the soon to be 12 year old cancer survivor - the one who brought backpacks of Hope to kids in hospitals that he had all too much in common with - help a fellow cancer fighter achieve his dream.

If you're a hockey fan you may have also seen EJ Hradek give the guy a shout-out the other day, choking back tears. If you did then you know that this past weekend Connor and his family found out he's had a relapse. The leukemia is back and the doctors are going to treat it aggressively, much in the way young Connor goes about his business tending goal on ice rinks around the country. The kid's a fighter, but he and his family could really use your support, just like every child facing a disease as humbling and horrible as cancer.

To put this in perspective, Connor spent much of his early life fighting leukemia. Once he achieved remission he stood a 99.9% chance of never having to face it again. So in essence, he's the .1%. And yet despite the devastating news, within an hour or so of finding out he was receiving his first treatment; eager to defeat it again.

It's my understanding that the Lunch with the Legends event for GDay is sold out - proof that Dawg fans are willing to lend a helping hand. And this is me, asking once again, that if you're able, please consider giving again. If you can add Connor to your thoughts and prayers, very much appreciated. 


Scott Woerner: impactful player with a lasting legacy

In a word this post is about longevity. You can talk about the longevity of Scott Woerner's football career - from eastern central Texas he went to the glory of Sanford Stadium and then on to a professional career in the NFL and the USFL. But my case for Scott Woerner to be included in the College Football Hall of Fame centers on the longevity of his impact in the history of Georgia Bulldogs football. Thirty years after he left Athens, Woerner is still remembered for his dedication to his team, his knack for making big plays and helping the Dawgs win the biggest game in its history.

And isn't that how players of any sport should be measured, by the duration with which they remain in the collective mindsets of fans? Regardless of the arena, sports are there for the public's consumption. They exist to entertain. The fan's memory becomes the measuring stick with which all athletes' résumés are judged. Did he change the complexion of the game? Did he play bigger when the game was biggest? Did he impact the history of his team and sport as easily as he did the final result on the scoreboards?

Difficult questions and complicated answers. After all, when we're talking about the College Football Hall of Fame we're talking about the greatest of the great. And to this Georgia football fan, there are few any greater than Scott Woerner.

I've explained before that I did not grow up specifically as a Georgia Bulldog. But I was taught to appreciate college football the way that any southern boy should. And as a kid in Athens GA during the 1970's and 80's you could not escape the frenzy of Herschel Walker, Coach Dooley and the Junkyard Dawgs. Their pictures were on billboards everywhere, and their voices were on the radio at every commercial break. Of course now those days come to me in a flurry of mental images. Erk's forehead is one as well as Herschel's tremendous thighs that both battered defensive backs as well as blew past them in a flurry. On a national scale I recall Oklahoma's odd looking yet remarkably powerful wishbone and the stoicism of Bear's gaze underneath that houndstooth hat. There were also the plaid sports coats of the announcers and the live shots of the scoreboard clock that they cut into the picture frame, the one that wavered like a sniper's crosshairs when the wind blew. Those are all images that helped indoctrinate me into the religion of college football.

More locally, and even before Herschel flipped his quarter to come to Athens, it was Scott Woerner's appetite for being near the football that impressed me the earliest. Even as a youngster of eight or nine I recognized the importance of interceptions and reversing the field with elusive returns, ones that were like skipping a rock upstream. And there was none better than Woerner. He once amassed 190 yards in one game against Kentucky just returning kicks. During the greatest of all seasons for the Bulldogs Woerner totaled 488 yards returning punts, which put him over 1000 for his career. His mark of 15.7 yards per return in 1980 is a school record that still holds today. It's no wonder that Larry Munson coined the nickname Woerner the Returner.

But #19 didn't just change the game on special teams. Woerner finished his collegiate career with 13 interceptions and returned those picks for 303 yards. Add to that a total of 147 tackles while a Bulldog and you can see why Georgia placed him in their Circle of Honor with other outstanding athletes to wear the red and black. In the secondary, he helped define Erk Russell's aggressive and attacking defense. It's a fitting tribute to Woerner's college career that his last interception (and second in the game) helped seal the win for the Dawgs in the 1981 Sugar Bowl against Notre Dame, giving them an undefeated season and the consensus National Title

And here we are, more than three decades removed from Scott Woerner's gridiron accomplishments and we still remember his lasting legacy with great appreciation, fondness and respect. In an era when highlights were more often given through a radio wire or while sitting in attendance than on instantaneous sports shows at all hours of the day, Woerner gave us highlights and memories to keep forever. An opportunistic defensive player and an elusive, gritty return man, Scott Woerner earned every accolade the University of Georgia could give him. And yet there is one more he's earned on a national level that could honor his career as a student-athlete like none other.

For those of us within the Dawg Nation, there is no greater compliment one can give another than to describe them as a Damn Good Dawg. It is a title bestowed to many, but those who competed against our rivals and helped defeat our opponents earned it many times over. Scott Woerner is such a player. He proved it as a four year letterman and All-American player under Vince Dooley. The College Football Hall of Fame is about longevity, permanence and excellence. And it is place this Damn Good Dawg deserves to call home.

Malcolm ready to exorcise some demons

Although demons might be a strong word. Still, he sounds like the idea of missing most of the Capital One Bowl (he went out early with an apparent concussion after returning a kick and never returned) still haunts him.

Or is it something else?
Mitchell is also unquestionably the top option at receiver, now that Tavarres King has graduated. Murray and Mitchell each said the coaches are moving Mitchell around a lot, trying to maximize his abilities and create some mismatches. In the past he's tended to start on the short side of the field, but Mitchell said he's now working the slot and the wide side.
"I think I can become a lot better, just off of some of the things that happened to me last year, that didn't go my way, now I'm learning how to make sure things do go my way."
As we talked about a couple weeks ago, this shapes up to be a very big year for Mitchell. And of course he is quite aware of that.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Sean Jones and the GA/TN border war

Should Tennessee law makers refute Georgia's claim, I hear Sean Jones is ready to train Georgians for "scoop and score" runs against the butt chuggers.

Monday's Meatloaf - "dookie-snot" and other $5 words

It's as natural as scratching your elbow when it itches. Or leaving the toilet seat up when you're done...standing in front of it. Hell Heck, it may even be a law of physics for all I know. Maybe I'll ask someone that didn't sleep through physics class. If I know anyone that didn't sleep through that class. (Just kidding Mr. P! Yours is the only class I've ever been in that used a guitar to teach me...umm...well, something about physics.)

Did you know: Sir Isaac Newton
never drove a car? Ever.
But I do remember this: for every action there is an equal and opposite REaction. Therefore, when someone puts their ass rear end on top off their head and pulls their goddamn goshdarned car out in front of me, as I'm driving my lovely family safely to a nearby restaurant...or grocery store...or church, I'm gonna give that dumbass piece of shit fellow driver of lesser skill my REaction.
"You %$#*! dumb%!@!!! Get out of my &^$%@&!# way!!"
"Daddy! That's a dollar."
"Wait, what?" Then the other kid pipes up too.
"Actually, that's five dollars. You use bad words you put money in the jar."
It was presented as such a matter of fact, from such undeniably sweet and truthful faces. All I could do was turn to my wife (...ONCE we were at a full stop and it was safe to not to keep a very keen eye on the...other less skilled motor vehicle operator in front of me...) and beg a pardon.
"The swear jar honey. You just made a donation to the local animal shelter. I'm sure they appreciate your foul mouth."
Again. Wait. What? There's a collection plate for my colorful oratorical offerings now? Each and every slip of the tongue is a withdrawal from the wallet? Did I miss a meeting? I mean it wasn't that long ago we actually held a "Family Board" vote for officers. Despite a few hanging chads I don't recall being unseated as Supreme Ruler and Benevolent King of Bernie's House of Estrogen. How could such legislation be enacted without His Omnipotence being made aware? On a related note, where is my friggin' scepter?

Perhaps that no good sonofabitch used his non-functioning turn signal and bubble gum driver's license to run it over. Bastard. (Yes I know. Two dollars. Here's a twenty. Open a tab kid.)

Today's Ingredients
- Congrats again to the Women's Swimming and Diving Team on their most recent national title!
- Tyler found Samuel L. ready to jump in the pool and celebrate. (sidenote: I bet Jackson needs a #swearbucket. Am I right?!?)
- vineyarddawg updates us on the SEC Championships where the Gym Dogs finished fourth.
I don't speak KOrean and only listen to Manilow.
- Georgia will be looking for a tailback in next year's class. Sony Michel is high on their board. But as Kimberley explains, so is Nick Chubb from Cedartown.
- In Ching's week in review there's some Pro Day stuff, recruiting nuggets and some lowlights from the diamond.
- Some Chattanooga flavor in this nice post by Paschall about two area natives looking for a larger impact on the tackle football team.
- If you were enamored with Florida Gulf Coast's run to the Sweet Sixteen this weekend like most of the nation, then you'll enjoy this post by Daugman that chronicles just how Coach Enfield turned the program into a giant killer.
- So. CCRider runs down the list of candidates to replace Mal Moore as Athletic Director Extraordinaire at Alabama. Have to say I find the thought of Taylor Swift or Kim Jong Un ordering around and towering over the Lilliputian quite intriguing.
- Is it just me, or is Spencer Hall about the only person that could intricately sew in a Game of Thrones reference to his Harvey Updyke plea deal response post? And for good measure he throws in some dragons, frontal nudity and an Androgel a Vaseline endorsement. #FREEHBO #FREEHARVEY
- Former Dawg Brian Bohannon was able to escape the flats and has been named Kennesaw State's first ever football coach. (h/t Groo)
- What's that Greg? Coach Johnson wants to be a grad assistant at Georgia and Coach Boom admits to his own mental instability...?
- Lastly, really appreciate all the comments, emails and responses to last week's meatloaf. I passed on everyone's well wishes. She responded with fist bumps.

Doubles as "Daddy's Tailgating
Bourbon Cup".
I had this dream a few weeks ago. I was sitting on the sofa tweeting when the wife brought news of great joy from the BookFace. The Drivin N Cryin documentary Scarred but Smarter was complete and was being included in the queue at Atlanta Film Festival 2013. A group of friends had already booked their tickets!

The crescendo of pleasantries grew until calendars were pulled out and the date ran right smack dab into a kid's birthday. Perhaps you'll recall last year's "sleepover" party where a bunch of eight year olds invaded my house, farted in every square inch before announcing that my pancakes sucked worse than rain clouds during recess. It was the worst 16 hours, 35 minutes and 42 seconds of all of 2012. In fact, the dog still looks at me accusingly whenever the door bell rings. As if to say, "Oh hell naw. Not this shit again Bernie!" (two dollars, #swearjar).

So it seemed as if this moment I had been eager to arrive would pass me by. I'd have to wait for Brody to release his bootlegged version and buy it off Craig's List from Kramer for a princely sum. I had argued against having another "sleep"over, suggesting all manner of alternatives from trips to Disney to getting punched in the nuts repeatedly an entire weekend, which is always a favorite around the castle. But to no avail. (Again, where's my scepter?) However, just as my misery had fully set in, she said it! "You go ahead and go. I'll handle the sleepover."

Only it wasn't a dream at all. It ACTUALLY happened. Both Fate and Mrs. Bernie smiled on me simultaneously. Much like that time her father dragged her down the aisle and said to me, "Here! Let her break your washer and dryer and blender and oven and microwave and anything else that cleans or cooks for a few decades. I'm done." Except this time she wasn't wailing hysterically. She was smiling and saying things like how she would handle the ALL of the pre-pubescents on her own. No zone coverage needed. She's like Jarvis against the gators. "Y'all step back. And be ready for the next turnover."

I love that woman. Especially at 6:01am on Saturday morning when the chaos resumed roughly four hours after it ended and she grumbled, "We're not doing this shit ever again."

Step back. I got that #swearjar donation for ya Honey. The rest of you are on your own. Here's your fork. Watch your filthy mouths.


Where's the bottom?

Eight straight losses. Shut out for the first time all season. 8-16 overall. 0-6 in the SEC.

Home and home with Clemson this week. Then a road trip to Lexington. Perno thinks it might be a good time to get out of town and hints that some changes to the lineup may be in order.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Women's Swim Team are National Champs!

They completely dominated defending champion California in Indianapolis. Behind strong performances by London Olympics gold medal winners Allison Schmitt and Shannon Vreeland the Lady Dawgs swam to an 84 point victory in claiming the programs' fifth national title.

You can see Coach Bauerle's press conference by clicking here.

Congrats Lady Dawgs!

National Champions!!

"Lunch with the Legends" VIP Tailgate

From Krisi comes news of the second annual GDay fundraiser for the Kasyn Cares Fund and the Aflac Cancer Center at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta - Lunch with the Legends. Over $100,000 has been raised by the coaches' wives in just over a year. This is a great event, a great opportunity to meet some great Georgia Bulldogs before the spring game.

Here's some more info from the email:
On Saturday, April 6, the UGA Coaches Wives will be hosting their second annual “LUNCH WITH THE LEGENDS” VIP Tailgate from 10AM – 12:30PM at Legion Field prior to the G-Day Game.  The theme for this year’s event is Legendary UGA Quarterbacks.  We will have 200 special edition Nike UGA footballs with the autographs of Georgia’s legendary QBs from over the last 50 years.  We have been overwhelmed with the response from our former field generals.  To date, we have secured commitments from and over the next two weeks will be getting the autographs of the following legends:  Kirby Moore, Mike Cavan, Andy Johnson, Ray Goff, Buck Belue, John Lastinger, Eric Zeier, Mike Bobo, David Greene, D.J. Shockley, Matthew Stafford, and Aaron Murray.  We will update you daily as these autographs are secured.  The Atlanta area QBs (Zeier, Greene, Shockley, Belue, Stafford + Moore) will be signing at CHOA offices over the next 10 days.  The Athens area QBs (Goff, Cavan, Johnson, Bobo, Murray + Lastinger) are scheduled to sign them at the Butts Mehre building on Wednesday, 4/3. Right now, I’m pretty sure that no Bulldog anywhere has a football with the autographs of all of these legendary UGA QBs.  Unless you purchase one of these 200 keepsakes . . . chances are pretty good you never will. 
Here’s the deal:  Anyone who purchases one of these limited edition footballs for only $200 will receive an invitation for two to the UGA Coaches Wives “Lunch with the Legends”.  In addition to the wives, we’ll have some of these legendary QBs and other former players in attendance at this event catered by Chick-fil-a and emceed by another UGA legend – Chuck Dowdle.  Gates will open at 10AM and wrap up at 12:30PM, in time to be in your seats for the opening kickoff.  We’ll have the balls on hand to pick up at the tailgate, when you check in.  If you can’t make it to the lunch, let us know and we’ll mail your ball to you on Monday, 4/8.
What do you have to do? Just CLICK HERE and buy one of those legendary footballs and then show up hungry on April 6th. If you buy a football and can't make it to Athens for GDay they'll make sure they'll mail your autographed football to you. Thanks to Paige Grantham for leading the charge, Shelton Stevens for passing the word around, and as always to Krisi for just being a Damn Good Dawg!