Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Keith Marshall- The "X" Factor

I cannot wait for the 2015 football season.  I cant wait to see who is under center and I cant wait to see the new incoming freshmen additions to the team, what Coach Pruitt has in year two with his defense, and I know that many await the sophomore season of Nick Chubb and what he brings at the running back position. (He's good folks)

I personally cant wait to see Keith Marshall back on the field.  In 2012, along side that "other" freshman Tod Gurley he averaged 6.48 per carry appearing in all 14 games.  Might I add that it was Keith Marshall and not Gurley that won "newcomer of the year".  Gurley was a BEAST. (still is), and yet no one seems to mention Keith Marshall going into this year. I warn you... Dont sleep on him. This guy can play. He can STILL play.

Gurley got his praise for a reason. Chubb is the star he is for a reason.  Lest we forgett...Keith Marshall adds a lot the offense at Georgia. A LOT.  He adds needed depth. MUCH needed depth.... Some may ask if he is durable. Some may doubt his ability to stay healthy.  The luxury of it is that he doesnt have to carry the load alone.  Nick Chubb, Sony Michel, and Keith Marshall are a three headed-always fresh legs- downhill battering ram.  Dont sleep on Keith Marshall.

Let us not forget his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield.  What makes the Alabama running attack and offense so lethal?  Their backs are VERY dangerous out of the backfield catching passes. I will take Keith, Sony, and even Nick Chubb out in the open field one-on-one with a defender all day long.

I made a comment the last two years going into the Tennessee games that if Georgia got their running back into the secondary and it was one defender vs the GA RB, then it was going to be a TD every time.  If im not mistaken he had a 75 yard touchdown AND a 72 yard touchdown vs TN in 2012. Dont forget Keith Marshall.

Keith came in with Gurley. .... His senior year is upcoming with another Running back garnering all the attention. Thats fine.  I remember a clip of him racing Malcom Mitchell in a 40 yard dash one day after practice. He has the speed.  No one is talking about him, but reports say he COULD have played at the end of last year, but why waste the redshirt and year of eligibility?  He adds a factor that most defenses will struggle to defend. Hes a two way threat. I think hes hungry for success. I think hes an "X" factor, and I dont think you should forget hes there..  I think hes a forgotten member of this offense, and can be used in a variety of ways. I think hes a super weapon on offense and using his skills is something Georgia will do and be very successful at it.

Stay healthy Keith. God speed.
Go Dawgs.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

It's Who Is Still There.

Stop me if you have heard this one before... "UGA hauls in top 5 recruiting class".  Sound familiar?  Yeah, many will say "GA does that EVERY year"... and yes we (UGA) always do seem to recruit well.  Many will point out that there are as many former bulldogs on the roster in the NFL as there are from any other school.  So what gives?  In all reality, Georgia has NEVER had a #1 recruting ranking on National Signing Day.  Yep, Georgia has had a top 3, or multiple top 5 classes. Numerous times.   So what gives? Wheres the Natty??? I tell you what gives.... top 4 in the nation can mean 3rd in your OWN conference.  Gotta do a better job of getting THOSE guys to UGA instead of Bama, or Auburn (paying), or LSU.

I would argue that Georgia has always had some players to leave one year too early, and that has hurt. Im not talking about Tod Gurley, or Knowshon, or Matthew Stafford.  Those guys really had nothing to gain by another year. Nothing. They were set.  Im talking about some defensive prowess that either didnt care, or didnt like who they were playing for.

Remember that 2002 season where GA went 13-1 and won the sugar bowl?  That year would have been good for a playoff spot in 2014, and maybe even a BCS berth if not for overrated Miami and Ohio State undefeated teams coming from inferior conferences.  Why am I bringing up that year?  I do believe that Charles Grant had departed a year early and would have been on that team.  Can you imagine David Pollack on one end opposite Charles Grant with Will Thompson as a BACKUP?  yeah. me too.

In 2004, Georgia won the east and was defeated by LSU in the SEC Championship game.  Defensive end Chris Clemons had unexplainably left a year early in 2003.  Who knows? With one more body on the line, Georgia may have won in Baton Rouge and faced someone ELSE in Atlanta that year. Would 2010 have been as tough to watch trying to stop the run had Rennie Curran not departed before his senior year?

I know all these cases we are talking about ONE guy.  I realize that.  I would just say thinking what MIGHT have been with just ONE more body in there to provide depth you never know what might have happened.

I'm bringing  it up because Jordan Jenkins, and Leonard Floyd COULD have left.  Sterling Bailey COULD have left. Josh Dawson could have left.  None of them did.  Combine that with a VERY good defensive haul on the part of Coach Pruitt, and consider what he did with what youth on the defensive side he had to work with last year, and the defense could really hold some folks down this year. Combining who STAYED with the incoming might be something that Georgia hasnt done in a long long time...

I havent mentioned the returning guys on OFFENSE... maybe I will do that later.  Theres a man that most are overlooking who is poised for a breakout and big time year.


Monday, May 25, 2015

Why Does This Feel Different?

Let me begin by saying I am not crowning anyone the SEC East or even Conference Champions.  I am not proclaiming that Georgia Bulldogs Football 2015 will be a College Playoff Team for sure. I think they can be.  I think there are components there that certainly make me optimistic. I feel that way mostly because of the defensive side of the ball.  Something feels different.  In a GOOD way.

Is it because the IPF has been approved?
Is it because the IPF is going WHERE Coach Richt held out for it to be?
Is it because we have a defensive coordinator that we love to watch coach and believe in?
Is it because LOTS of players decided to come back rather than bolt for the NFL?
Is it that Coach Pruitt can HELP those players be better NFL prospects and players?
Do the players have a quiet confidence about what they think they can do and in the coaching staff?
Is it because no matter who is under center that we KNOW we have a running game that can control the clock and let the defense rest and hold them when its their time?
Have we really ever been THIS excited about early committments?

I know we have said it all before. I know we all get giddy in May, June and July. But im telling you. Something feels different.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Free At Last!!!

Am I the only SEC fan who is rejoicing in Penn Wagers retirement?  I mean really.  How many times over and over did we see him walk on the field and think "Oh Lord, here we go!!!"  I mean can he be as bad as I say he was?? yes!!  The fact that I am not the only one blogging or commenting today proves that.

Lets face it.. Penn could have REVIEW of a play and still find a way to give the dawgs the raw end of the deal.  To that I say BYE!!!!!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Welcome To The SEC-- Challenges Uncontemplated Part 1

I am taking a couple of posts to talk about the things that make the SEC tougher. The unmentioned things. The things we all know about, but across the country these things may not ring true or seem as real as they really are.

Part 1 of these posts take a look at something that all teams face. Injuries.  Why post about them in the SEC being different? Because they are. UGA defensive lineman Jordan Jenkins mentioned in an interview that during an on field conversation that Mizzou QB James Franklin actually said to Jarvis Jones, "Stop hitting me so hard".  I refuse to comment on that other than.. really?

In an article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, it was stated today that Mizzou only has 5 of its top 10 projected offensive lineman available right now.  They were put into a very bad situation when their left tackle (the blind side lineman) Elvis Fisher was injured on Saturday Night.  (Think Trinton Sturdivant for GA and how that worked out).

Turns out, they are a little beaten up and sore headed for this weeks game against Arizona State.  Now I know that bumps and bruises are part of the game, and injuries happen.  I just find it strange that after 1 game in the SEC, we are hearing about how the QB was complaining of the level of physicality, the coach was blaming someone for "taking off the QB helmet", and that the Offensive line is a little depleted.

I am not making fun.  I HATE when a player is hurt, and has to miss practice or playing time.  I dont wish an imjury on ANYONE.  I am just saying, its been one game. One week. 41-20.  Our players are hurt too.  Jarvis had a hurt groin. He CAME TO MIZZOU with a hurt groin.  He started. He played. He tackled. He rushed. He intercepted. He returned his interception. He hit, and he caused fumbles. All with a pulled groin.
And he will be out there next week doing the same thing, until he isnt physically able to walk. Not just beat up and bruised, he will play with those.

I know you are hurt. I know you are sore. I know its tough. Every team in this conference is feeling the same thing. Thats how it is here.  Welcome to the SEC.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Things A Dawg Won't Say

I hear a lot of fans who will root for this team or that team just cause its "good for the conference".  I have been known to do this a time or two, but I find it very very difficult.  I found it hard to root for Urban Meyer to win a BCS, but they were playing OHIO STATE... lets see, do i vote for the devil or Satan?  Pretty sure it dont matter...but i rooted for the SEC anyway.  When they played Oklahoma, well I have to admit I was quite the Boomer Sooner fan..... alas, The Almighty won despite me.

That got me thinking.  What are some things a true, die hard, red & black wearing, God fearing, Dooley loving, Munson listening, Richt supporting, Herschel days, dawg fan would NEVER say??  Here are my top 10, and you can of course add your own.  From the home office somewhere in Tunnel Hill, GA, here it is.

#10- "This orange is beautiful under the lights dont you think honey?"

#9-- "I sure hope Penn Wagers is calling the game today"

#8-- " Tim Tebow, Urban Meyer and Brandon Spikes, three of my favorite people"

#7-- " I think the Athens Police should be tougher"

#6-- " Tech people really aint that bad"

#5-- "We should be nicer to those gator people when we see them"

#4- " I need a pair of jean shorts"

#3- "I sure am glad there is another team called the Tigers in the SEC"

#2- "We need more Rap Music at the games"

And the number one thing you should never hear a dawg fan say.... " Dont blame me, I voted for Michael Adams"

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

South Carolina Has No Backup --Or They Are Overrated

Look, I will give all the credit in the world to Connor Shaw for gutting out a game at Vandy.  Hey, I wouldnt want to give James Franklin the satisfaction either.  However, does SC East really need their #1 QB to beat East Carolina at home this week?

Cant they just give it to Lattimore 40 times, run the other kid about 10-15 and throw basic passes about 15 times?  Wouldnt that be an easy task for a backup QB to handle?  Do you think that Georgia at home wouldnt just let Aaron Murray get well and have Hutson Mason handle this one?

Why risk it?  Connor Shaw could get hurt against East Carolina just as easy as he did the  other night.  Georgia lost Jeff Owens in 2008 during the GA Southern game.  Why even let him take the field against a smaller school? Dont they need him for the SEC schedule more than just this one?  I think they DO need him out there..... and for  2 reasons.

1. They dont have a backup capable of handling the game, and getting by the smaller school.

2. They arent that good anyway, and are worried about losing this game to East Carolina.

If its the 2nd one, They have more problems than a deep bone bruise to the shoulder.

Go Dawgs.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Perfect Season

While most think a perfect season is merely winning all your games including the SEC and the National Championship, that is not the case.  That would be a GREAT season. It would even be a GLORIOUS season.  However there are other hidden nuggets along  the way to achieving those goals which would make the season PERFECT.  Things that would not only make rivals mad, but rub salt in the wound. Things like retribution, revenge, and some things that could happen just for spite, that would make this dawg rejoice, and yes even point and laugh.  Things besides a 14-0 record that would make the season PERFECT for Dawg Stephen.

1- Penn Wagers doesn't become a factor.   You know what I'm talking about.  Every year it seems that somehow the old native of the state of South Carolina finds a way to get into the dawgs game and do something to maybe not change the outcome, but something to make it strange on how things wound up.  Part of a perfect season for me would be not even seeing him, much less seeing him mess up a game for my beloved dawgs.

2- Shut Out Vandy.  Now within the perfect season schedule wise would be a win in every game.  To sweeten the deal a little?  Hold Vanderbilt scoreless.  What a day we live in when the coach from Vandy has made this one of the most anticpated games of the season.  What would be better as the 4th quarter winds down to be holding these guys SCORELESS and have about 28-31 points on the board, as Coach Grantham just smiles. (and I smile with him)

3- A Win Streak Over The Gators-  Last years win was awesome.  The year before it took overtime for us to be defeated.  How PERFECT would it be to win again and have not just a years worth of win over the gators but a winning STREAK??  Something that hasnt happened since ol Vince himself was walking the sidelines.  And a GA Graduate who turned on us has to answer those questions... perfect!!!

How about you? got any to add? I just wanted to list 3.  The comment section is now open.  Besides winning every game, what else would sweeten the season for you???

Thursday, August 2, 2012

So about those Running Backs

Count me in the crowd that is very sorry to see Isaiah Crowell go.  Is it possible that we put a little too MUCH pressure on him?  I think it is fair that we asked him to man up and play in the SEC. Thats what we asked ALL of our players to do.  I think its fair that we asked him to live up to the hype that comes with being the #1 RB recruit in the nation.  He came to Georgia to be the man.  He came to play early. He came to do all the things that a feature running back should do.  That pressure was fair.

What I dont think was fair was for us to ask him to do it all alone.  He SHOULD have had Washaun Ealey to learn from.  He SHOULD have had senior Caleb King showing him the ropes.  That wasnt the case.  He was asked to come in mid-summer, learn the playbook, learn the schemes, and lead the dawgs to a SEC Championship.  He did all this after not really playing the entire game in High School because his team was up by so many points so often.  This didnt help his conditioning, and as a freshman, the SEC grind is hard on even the #1 recruit.    For all the things that happened in the year, whether it be lack of toughness at times, or bad decision making, or whatever.. he still wound up being SEC freshman of the year and he darn near got the dawgs a conference championship.  Alas, he is gone now.

So where does that leave us at this point?  Have you really compared it to last year?  Call me the eternal optomist, but I think we are BETTER off at this point in 2012 than we were before the 2011 season.  Here's my thoughts and view, and as usual, feel free to jump in and gimme your side of it.

In 2011, Georgia had Brandon Harton, Ken Malcome, Carlton Thomas, Richard Samuel, Kyle Karempelis and an unproven freshman who was highly recruited and expected to be a Savior.

In 2012, Georgia has Brandon Harton, Ken Malcome, Kyle Karempelis, Richard Samuel, and TWO unproven freshmen running backs expected to be Saviors.  One of these freshmen held his own in a impromptu footrace on the practice fields with Malcom Mitchell.  Brandon Harton is all heart.... Ken Malcome grew up last year and is gonna FIGHT for his spot in the rotation.. look for big things from this guy in 2012.  You could see his heart and determination in the bowl game.  Im glad to have a guy like this on our team.  Richard Samuel..well what can you say other than WE LOVE YOU!!  Ultimate team player and Darn good dawg.  Count me in the crowd that is VERY VERY excited to see what Keith Marshall and Todd Gurley can do.  These are two  HUGE recruits for the university of Georgia.  These guys are gonna make us proud both on AND off the field.  I like Keith and his work ethic, and from what we have heard about Todd, he is a stud and plays through adversity (pain)... OOOOH YEAH!!!

Comparing 2011 to 2012, The dawgs are a little deeper at the RB position.  Will any of them gain over 800 yards and lead the dawgs to another division title and more?  We will see.  I think we are better off at running back, now to see them prove me right.  That being said, I still wish we had Isaiah on the team.

Go Dawgs!!


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

We dont make em, we just play em

I am about SICK AND TIRED of hearing people bemoan and criticize the schedule Georgia has in football for 2012.  They dont play Alabama, they dont play LSU, and they dont play Arkansas!! (again).  Guess what, that aint the dawgs fault!!  We dont make the schedule.  We were all ready to go to T-Town (where CMR has never lost), and play the Tide.  Its not Georgia's fault that Mizzou came in.  That will be tough in itself, but I have something else to add.

Remember 2008??  Remember when Georgia had to play AT LSU before the game with Florida?   Remember when Georgia played Alabama after a trip to the other side of the world to play Az-State?  Remember 2009 when we played BOTH LSU and Arkansas?  No one felt sorry for the dawgs then.  No one gave us credit for such a tough task.  No. Instead they said, ooooh theres no way the dawgs can manage that!! Its too tough.

So here's a thought.  If you are gonna down us for the years when the schedule might fall a little more favorable, dont have such a short memory, give a little credit for the years when it didnt ok??

Go Dawgs.