Saturday, August 10, 2013

Twenty One Days!!

Keep your eye on it! Keep your eye on it!

This is absolute gold, by my definition at least. Georgia and Clemson under the lights...for the first time in Sanford! Dan Magill. Vince Dooley. Herschel used as a DECOY!!

Plus, all the Clemsoning y'all!

h/t Dawg19

There's something different about Fenteng's helmet...

Welcome aboard Shattle! 

Tramel Terry carrying a big chip

Imagine, if you will, being a state's top football prospect. Everyone across the nation wants you to run routes and score touchdowns on their campus, especially the two in state programs. And yet you cross the border and decide you want to suit up for a rival program.

You have to think Tramel Terry is hearing it from everybody back in his home state. His Georgia Bulldogs play both Clemson and South Carolina the first two weeks of the season. He was going to get a chance to shut the home town haters up, with his own hands and feet doing the talking. The coaches that chastised him for choosing the Dawgs would eat their own words.

At least that's how he envisioned it before last December's knee injury as he headed into an all-star game to feature his talents. He left that game with a torn ACL and has been rehabbing it ever since with the hopes of living out his vision of helping to take down the Tigers and the Gamecocks while catching passes from Aaron Murray under the lights.

Now, that vision is faint. Terry was painstakingly honest about his progress yesterday.
“Right now, I’m not ready,” he said. “I’m not ready at all. … I’ve got to feel like myself,. Of course, I don’t. I’ve got to build confidence in the coaches right now. They don’t want to put me out there if I’m not ready.”
The frustration oozes from every word in that quote.

Of course, if Terry isn't ready later this month, he'll get another opportunity next year to beat both Clemson and South Carolina. However, it's doubtful that makes what he's going through now any easier. We can only wish Terry a healthy and full recovery.

Your time is coming big guy! We'll be ready to rise to our feet. Go Dawgs!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Impact newcomer of 2013

After looking back at where we were with Todd Gurley a year ago, as well as setting some qualifications for speculating, it's time to talk about who will be this season's impact newcomer. Here are the top candidates as I see it right now (again, based on the qualifications set forth yesterday):
Leonard Floyd
Floyd came hungry from Hargrave. (via)
  • Leonard Floyd - at a position of need at outside linebacker and is turning some heads for sure.
  • Jonathan Rumph - really like this guy and want to pick him. But even though his spring was jaw dropping, he's not at a position where instant production will be key.
  • Tray Matthews - after some key losses at safety, we have to have someone step up back there. Matthews isn't just turning heads, he's knocking em off.
  • Reggie Carter - with one inside linebacker starting spot up for grabs, Carter seems to have a slight edge over fellow freshman Ryne Rankin in terms of press mentions. I like both. And we'll see both of them too. A lot.
  • JJ Green - has the eye popping highlight thus far, for sure.
  • Shaq Wiggins - gonna be a star, definitely. But has he outshone he comrades?
You just have to go defense, obviously. And the signature departure for the defense was Jarvis. So my instinct is to go with someone I think can help Jordan Jenkins rush the passer and wreak havoc. But I'm more tempted to go with someone in the secondary that can help buy the pass rush some time while also stepping up to make some tackles. And for the record, if Richt had redshirted Sheldon Dawson last season (and glad he didn't btw), I would've totally picked him here. Dude is killing it out there so far and it is welcome news to my ears. 

But like alabamadawg and wilk said yesterday in the comments, this is an easy choice - Tray Matthews. If he can balance his physicality and coverage skills, he'll have every opportunity to make some plays. Starting with week one in Clemson.

Get after that ass Tray!

Blake Sailors takes dig at Shaq Wiggins

In the parlance of our times...ROFLMAO!!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

2013 SEC Helmet Schedule, the jorted version

Many thanks to Kerri, NYC's finest Dawg! Embiggen, click, save, share and HUNKER DOWN y'all!

The next freshman sensation?

Given yesterday's look back at Gurley and Marshall, it's time to speculate and prognosticate. We've seen enough headlines and quotations from camp thus far to make an educated guess on which newcomer will make a Gurleyesque impact this fall.

But first, some guidelines. I plan to use these. And although you are under no such obligation, they do help tie the posts together.
  1. First and foremost, must be a first year player. So that limits us to a true freshman, redshirt freshman or transfer.
  2. Now that the roster is narrowed down significantly, my choice will also come from a roster spot that has seen some manner of renovation. Last season the running back spot was in near turmoil. Well, that's a bit dramatic. We knew we had a couple youngsters with potential. But we also knew we were desperate for some consistent production.
  3. Obviously the candidate has to have had a pretty good camp, generated some buzz...up to and including content for multiple threads on message boreds.
  4. Preference for quotes from both coaches and players alike. For me this adds a bit of authenticity. Players tend to be more excitable, while coaches more reserved. Truth is usually in the excitement.
  5. MUST have an instagram account to have shown him doing backflips.
  6. Consensus says it must be a defensive player. Because Hicks isn't technically a newcomer.
I think that'll do. After all, I already have my choice, which I'll post tomorrow morning. Did I miss a qualification? Care to provide your own guess as to which newcomer will drop jaws and crush opponents this fall?

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Rewinding back to Gurley and Marshall, the newcomers

What a difference a year makes right?

Seeing that video of JJ Green yesterday lead me to go back and look at some old posts from last August. In turn I began reminiscing about what it felt like a year ago with all the question marks at running back. Quite the different perspective compared to now with a wealth of talent there. Gurley and Marshall have added a calm to the storm that was seated behind Murray (and others) for so long. They've given us a steady diet of headlines without the messy police blotter. A very welcome change.

So I thought I would share some things I dug up from last August. My intention is to use what I found on Gurley and Marshall to somewhat objectify how we might guess who this year's up and comer might be. You know, see where some directed and concise reflection might take us before we just assume Tray Matthews.
  • "They told me to be ready. It was depending on me, how I picked up the system and came in there, if I would be redshirted." - Todd Gurley. I think Knowshon just shivered at the memory of being a scout team tailback.
  • "It's sad that Isaiah left. I wish he could be here, but I just kept doing what I was doing and I picked up the system pretty good." - Todd Gurley
  • "If they're in there a lot, it's probably because they're doing good. It's a good sign. I'm not afraid to play them. We're definitely going to play them a bunch." - Coach Richt
  • "I know when you looked at his film and you went and watched him play, it was like, 'Man, this is one of the best dudes out there this year.' " - Coach McClendon on recruiting Gurley
  • Georgia coach Mark Richt tried to downplay the performance of tailback Todd Gurley in Wednesday’s scrimmage. The freshman from Tarboro, N.C, led the Bulldogs in rushing for the second time in as many scrimmages this preseason. (via AJC)  Easy to remember how starved we were for someone to perform well at tailback.
  • Special. When I’m standing on the sideline and watching, all I can say is, ‘Wow!’ I don’t want to say too much, but when I saw that [number] 3 running down through there today, I was like, ‘that’s going to be a Trent Richardson right there.’ That’s what I can say. Big and fast, that’s all I can see.” - Shawn Williams.
  • "It gets me very excited whenever you see a running back who can create plays like that when there’s really nothing there.” - Chris Conley with some foreshadowing.
  • So it was nice to see that for the offense. Not for the defense.” - Coach Richt. More foreshadowing.
  • “I’ve just never been one to get in trouble. Our parents didn’t allow it. So I learned at an early age getting in trouble wasn’t an option.” - Keith Marshall
  • "And nowadays you don’t want to carry the load yourself. You want two or three running backs you could share with.” - Todd Gurley on the position's depth

Read more here:

Humpday Hilarity - nude speed bumps ??

(h/t Mac)

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Gameday to meet us in Clempson

Yep. The hype getting hyper.

Also - here's some more details on the show's opener for the season.

Georgia and Clemson: a preview in expectations

Up in Clemson, they think they can. In Athens, they know they should have. And while the differences between the two are vast, the perspectives will change immensely come September 1st.

For the Tigers, the new attitude and the fresh start began with a bowl game win against LSU. It was a notch in Dabo's belt; affirmation that with hard work, Clemson can be a national player once again. One can argue that Les Miles' team did as much to lose the Chick-Fil-A Bowl as Swinney's did to win it. After all, inexplicably, the Tigers from the bayou went away from a rushing attack that was working.

But good teams win ball games. And Clemson took the win...and let the expectations soar.
The Chick-fil-A Bowl win over LSU was a watershed moment for Swinney’s tenure: a win over a top-15 SEC foe. Sure, the Tigers had a pair of wins over Auburn, the win over South Carolina that sealed Swinney’s full-time status and a Music City Bowl win over Kentucky. But none seem to have resonated like fourth-and-16 and Chandler Catanzaro putting one right between the pipes as time expired in the Georgia Dome. (via)
Ken Ward
And now, with a legitimate Heisman Trophy contender at quarterback and a fervor of fan excitement behind them, the Clemson Tigers seemed poised for the next step. The next climb. The next hurdle. They are the Little Engine that could. The think they can; the only question is if they are able.

For Georgia the new era started last December as well, only it was a few weeks earlier. In many ways the bowl game against Nebraska was just a nice bookend for a terrific season and an opportunity to see how the team would respond after losing their previous game. A game in which they'd stood toe to toe with the giant, and damn near slayed the beast. Would they play with a runner up hangover, or would they treat the game as a new start?

Head coach Mark Richt has said they are not using the loss to Alabama as motivation. But somewhere in the deep recesses of each player's mind is the fact that they not only almost claimed the SEC, but nearly did it against Mighty Nick Saban and his Crimson Tide dynasty. The game was theirs and just slipped through their grasp.
"Our focus right now [isn't] so much the big picture dream than what have we got to do every single day, every single practice, every single play, to get where we want to go," Richt said. (via).
And that's been a consistent message from Richt during this time of year. Win the East and you have a chance to win the SEC. Win that and there's a good chance you're playing in the most important game of the season. So the message is the same this August as it was last August. Hard to argue against that, logically or emotionally.

Both Georgia and Clemson are coming off stellar seasons. Both have senior quarterbacks that returned just for games like this. Both are being batted around as possible title contenders.

One thinks they can. One knows they should have. Whether that attitude changes Labor Day weekend or not depends on the preparation.

Conley: often overlooked, but never forgotten

Chris Conley will burn you if you let him. Just ask his most recent victims, the Nebraska secondary.

The more I read about what all this guy is engaged in (Georgia LEAD Academy, anti-bullying campaigns, NCAA Athlete Advisory committee, just to name a few), the more I wonder if there's anything he can't do.
The 6-foot-3, 206 pounder reeled in six touchdown catches last season, good for second on the team, and had 342 yards on 20 catches. He’s a journalism major with the hopes of going into broadcast. He is the Southeastern Conference’s representative on the NCAA Division Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, focusing on simplifying the rule book as well as student-athlete well-being. The gig has Conley on the road three times a year — in July, November and January — and has him on frequent conference calls.
This story on the Georgia wideout by Rachel Bowers paints a picture of a young man that continues to grasp your attention before fading back out of the spotlight. Part of that is a credit to Conley's position mates. When you're in a rotation with guys like Malcolm Mitchell and Michael Bennett that is bound to happen. But it also seems to be his nature. He doesn't command the spotlight with his mouth. He waits patiently for his actions to speak for themselves.
“Georgia is where I’m meant to be,” he said. “If that’s playing with and behind some people, then that’s what I’m going to do to help this team win. I feel good about it. I feel like I’m ready and prepared for those situations when they need me and they call on me.”
Chris Conley, damn good Dawg!

Monday, August 5, 2013

"They're not going to be irrelevant."

(That's a compliment. I think.)

Found that quote and more in this piece at Athlon Sports when I was preparing the meatloaf. It's taken from an anonymous quote from an ACC coach about Georgia Tech. Even though the only comments that are important to Georgia fans are the ones pertaining to Clemson and Tech, it's always an interesting read when coaches are given anonymity to talk about their conference foes.

Take this one as food for thought: "Ted Roof is a good hire. Great for Tech go [sic] get a guy like that. You look at those guys on D and they play hard. I thought they had some talent on D. The secondary has its problems." …  

Well, perhaps they should use tricycles.

Monday's Meatloaf - southern manners vs southern football

If you were not already aware, I am the product of an IPTAY marriage. Luckily my parents had enough sense to raise me in Athens. I tell them it was so Child Protective Services would get off of their backs. They say it was so Dad could get his doctorate from a real school.

Or something like that... Regardless, I guess the main thing is - to this day I have yet to drive a tractor, the preferred mode of transport in and around upstate SC.

The 2002 season opener brought my dad's kittens to town, only to limp away after DJ and Billy broke their hearts. It was especially sweet for me because as I left our tailgate to head for Sanford before the game, I had called my folks to give them what the final score would be.

Do you know who Billy Bennett is Dad? Well, you will. Dawgs 31 Tigers 28.

Boom. The next Saturday we headed over Lake Hartwell for a visit. As we drove through Pendleton the gameday traffic got very thick. Clemson had a noon start, so we were backed up in a seas of cars full of Tiger Rags on their way to touch that rock. To give you the full visual, we were the sore thumb sitting comfortably in our red and black truck with flags at full Glory Glory.

At one point, I tried to motion a lady into the lane in front of me. I was raised to be gentlemanly and she had been sitting there for a good 5 minutes at least. I was sure her potato salad was within moments of spoiling a tailgate somewhere near Tillman Hall. And we were in no rush as the Dawgs didn't kick off in Chickumbia until mid-afternoon (you remember...when David Pollack proved he only needed one left hand to corral his 3rd career INT).

Maybe had Clempson won the contest 'tween the hedges the previous week she would've just given me the finger and laughed. But all she could manage on this Saturday morning was to look away in disgust and refuse my generous offer.

Don'tcha just LOVE college football in the South? And luckily I didn't have to count on her for a ticket the following year when the Dawgs went to Clempson. Mom gave me hers so I could sit next to dad and witness a real 30-0 thumping that included another Pollack INT. David Pollack just saved our whatchamacallit!

Besides, I bet that lady Tiger's potato salad sucked anyway.

Today's Ingredients
- Johnny Manzanite got paid. Maybe. Actually, it appears as if this is true. Wonder if Emmert is wearing AJ's jersey.
- Annnnnddd, Dennis Dodds explains that Texas A&M is just an innocent bystander here y'all.
- But perhaps the best is yet to come for Jonathan Manzanilla.
- Meanwhile, in Athens, Connor Norman is ready whenever and wherever.
- Logan with some updates from practice and some photos for your eyes to take a gander at.
- Hillbillies really know how to display their optimistic side.
- Speaking of fan failures, Tyler finds LSU leading the charge as usual.
- Did you know that Georgia is 2-0 against Clempson in the month of August? Find out more in this post where The Mayor returns to Dawgsports with some random facts and stats.
- Blutarsky believes Ramik Wilson is the greatest quote maker there ever was. Ever.
- Kimberley finds Bobo with more questions than answers.
- But Paschall is kind enough to shed some light on the running back position.
- A panel at DudeYouCrazy previews the gators.
She let me sign her boobie.

- "Nobody on the D-line scares you. Nobody at linebacker scares you." ACC coaches, talking Tiger.
- Lastly, Felder, Kramer and Sallee inside Sanford predicting the Dawgs' season. Be still my heart.

Ok so, if Johnny Shitball spelled his name correctly while taking fat stacks of Andrew Jacksons, let's give him two games. If he put the "e" before the "i" then that's four games. If he was wearing AJ's jersey, that's six games, regardless of his spelling prowess.

And can we please cease and desist with the "Johnny Football" nonsense now? This kid ain't all about football. He's got such a wider spectrum. I'd like to submit a new surname for lil Johnny. Because I'm pretty sure after watching The Big Lebowski a couple more times this weekend that Johnny Football's dad is actually Jackie Treehorn. It's a near perfect fit and would certainly explain the party never ends attitude and the fondness for leggy nymphomaniacs.

Anyway, just a suggestion. After all, as Mr. Treehorn says - "The brain is the biggest erogenous zone." Enjoy your Monday Reader. I'm sure Cecil Newton is.


Pre-Gameday invades Athens

I feel the hype getting hyper.

via Weiszer