The reality: Georgia is just not very good

Wow! September has flown by! So what did we learn on Saturday?

1. Georgia is just not very good: I could spin it for you Bulldog fans, but I won’t. You could rationalize the South Carolina loss.  It was on the road and Georgia was playing a new defense against a great, young running back. You can explain the Arkansas loss and praise Georgia’s comeback to tie the game in the fourth quarter. But after Saturday’s loss to Mississippi State in Starkville, I can only come to one conclusion: Georgia is just not very good.

I see an offensive line that has underachieved. I see running backs that are pretty average. I see a defense that really doesn’t have the personnel to run the scheme that is being employed. Yeah, Georgia was missing its star player (A.J. Green) who finally returns this week. That is a factor, but it doesn’t explain everything.

Mississippi State played hard and deserved to win the game. I’m not taking anything away from them. They played with a sense of urgency after two straight losses.

I thought there would be a sense of urgency for Georgia’s players to avoid an 0-3 start in the SEC. I was wrong.

Georgia fans have a right to be upset. Georgia should be better than this. But you need to know that Mark Richt is going to be the head coach at Georgia in 2011. He deserves the opportunity to fix whatever is wrong with this football team and this program.  Now if things don’t get better Richt  may have some tough decisions to make when this season is over. Let’s see how the season plays out.

2. Russell Wilson is the real deal: Wilson sliced and diced the Georgia Tech defense but you know what? Wilson is going to do that to a lot of defenses this season. With a quarterback like Wilson a team has a chance to win every Saturday. Suddenly, N.C. State’s Thursday night date with Florida State (Oct. 28) and visit to Clemson (Nov. 6) look a lot different.

Georgia Tech needs to put that game behind them and try to get on a little roll here with Wake Forest, Virginia, and Middle Tennessee coming up before a trip to Clemson. If Georgia Tech is going to get back in the ACC race, the Yellow Jackets have to protect the passer and the Joshua Nesbitt has got to throw it better.

3. There is a reason that Alabama has won 18 straight games: Some teams just know how to win despite adversity. Alabama’s defense was being carved up by Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett for about three quarters on Saturday in Fayetteville. But head coach Nick Saban was patient. He and defensive coordinator Kirby Smart made a couple of adjustments to get more pressure on Mallett. Then they decided to smash mouth the Razorbacks and wear them out. The result was a 24-20 victory and No. 1 Alabama stays undefeated with Florida coming to Tuscaloosa on Saturday. It was an impressive thing to watch. Alabama beat the No. 10 team last week and plays No. 7 Florida on Saturday and goes to No. 22 South Carolina on Oct. 9. If South Carolina had beaten Auburn the Gamecocks might have climbed into the Top 10 giving the Crimson Tide three straight games against the Top 10 in consecutive weeks.

Bottom line on Alabama: After jumping out to a 20-7 lead, Arkansas really wanted to win that game. Alabama expected to win the game.

4. Keep your eye on Stanford at Oregon: Oregon won a hard-fought game over Arizona State but when the coaches poll came out Sunday Oregon had jumped over TCU into the No. 4 position. And if Oregon can beat No. 13 Stanford (4-0) at home on Saturday, I predict the Ducks just might make Boise State uncomfortable in that No. 3 spot. Stanford, meanwhile, is just kicking everybody. The Cardinal’s 35-0 win over UCLA (which trounced Texas 34-12 last Saturday) looks even more impressive now. Stanford’s Andrew Luck is the best quarterback in the Pac-10. Florida-Alabama is the game of the week, but Stanford-Oregon is a close second.

5. Auburn showed me a lot of grit on Saturday: I’ll be honest. I wasn’t sure that Auburn had enough left in the tank to beat a team like South Carolina. The Tigers had been in a real slug fest the week before against Clemson. I thought fatigue would catch up with them in the fourth quarter. But quarterback Cameron Newton is turning out to be everything they hoped he would be. And the Auburn defense hung tough, held Marcus Lattimore to just 33 yards, and got the turnovers when they needed them in the fourth quarter. After Louisiana-Monroe this week, the Tigers have a couple more shootouts coming up with Kentucky in Lexington on Oct. 9 and Arkansas home on Oct. 16. Then they get LSU at home on Oct. 23.

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Programming note: We’ll break down the weekend’s action and bring out the analyst’s couch for our friends from Georgia and Georgia Tech on today’s “Barnhart and Durham” at 10 a.m. on 790 The Zone. Please come join the fun. www.790thezone.com

753 comments Add your comment

Garth

September 27th, 2010
10:58 am

Tks for not spinnin’ the dawgs’ woes. Listen, we know they’re not up to par SEC football. The real question is, when are they going to
fire their coach and change the mascot–yeah, you heard me. Get rid of
the pudgy bulldog and replace it with a guy in handcuffs and rename the
team . . . the Georgia Thugs.

LLoyd Christmas

September 27th, 2010
10:58 am

Colorado is even worse than the dogs. If the worthless dawgs are giving 4 in Colorado, the Buffaloes must be horrible.

JB

September 27th, 2010
10:58 am

5 -6 wins probably get’s him another year, all the usual cliche’s,,,,,,,like, He’s earned it, You know , it’s Bush’s fault, ugh 10 new bars opened downtown or WE mean it now……….I like this one ” we’re soooo close………………………………..3- 9 ,I believe get’s a mutual separation.

Steve

September 27th, 2010
10:59 am

Bama
Of course some acc teams can compete with top sec teams. Clemson showed that. Clemson and Miami are not bad. Vt isn’t either. They just had a big let down after a hard loss to Boise. The following loss falls on Boise. Fsu had a bad game against Ok. It happens. We’ll see what happens when the rival games happen. I think they will be very good games this year between sec and acc teams.

BAMA dude

September 27th, 2010
11:00 am

JB, they nearly lost control. Remember, the best three CB’s on the roster are redshirt freshmen. That said, I think this game is going to pay huge dividends for the youngsters. Early on they looked a bit lost and unsure of themselves. In the fourth quarter they won the game for us. I wouldn’t be a bit surprised to see the defense shoot up the charts now. There will still be mistakes because we’re young, but there will be lots of plays made because we’re good.

WinderDogg

September 27th, 2010
11:00 am

CMR will go down with his sinking ship…he will not fire Bozo. He did not want to free Willie…He is too much of a gentlemen to fire and improve. He will have to be removed before other progress can be made…don’t talk about recruits…the ones we have now are terrible

Steve

September 27th, 2010
11:00 am

Colorado had last week off too. Perhaps getting out of the South is what Ga needs. The law of averages say they will come out of this funk for at least a couple of games. I think they will beat Co but the first half will be close.

DIT

September 27th, 2010
11:01 am

Tony, I was one of the people that said last week that Auburn would not win because they have not put together a full 60 minutes of football in a long time. I’m eating crow now. Not only did they play a complete game, they looked awesome! Congrats Auburn.The Iron Bowl will be one for the ages at the end of the season. Where is that on being played?

Bama, to come back like you did at ARK. was impressive as well. That solidified your #1 ranking. ARK is a good team!

UF looks to have it’s offensive problems taken care of. I had a feeling they would. Too many athletes on that team. Not sure they can hang with Bama. Should be a good game.

As for my dawgs………. next

BAMA dude

September 27th, 2010
11:01 am

Steve, the only unbeten team in the ACC is NC St.

Nobody else in the conference could make it to week 4.

robodawg

September 27th, 2010
11:01 am

Bama’s defense definitely stepped it up in the second half. But Mallett’s unforced errors cost them the game. I think they got caught staring at the pinstripes. There are times when you can feel good about your team’s effort in playing the No. 1 team so close. But not this time, not when the moment gets the best of you and you cave under the pressure.

BAMA dude

September 27th, 2010
11:02 am

Fantasy Island

September 27th, 2010
11:02 am

WDE, Cam Newton is the next coming of Donovan Mcnabb!

JUst make sure you hide your laptops when he is around!!!
He and Masoli have that in common!

Lowcountry Bulldawg

September 27th, 2010
11:02 am

If the AD can see the writing on the wall then pull the triggerthis year. If he truly believes in what CMR has done and can possibly do then give him another year. I would rather go 1 year to early than 1 year to late.

Steve

September 27th, 2010
11:03 am

Remember Lsu beat Miss St last year by a point and should have lost. Point is, each week close games happen unless you are really a juggernaut like bama last year. I think this year would be the perfect year for a playoff. Sadly we may never see one. Maybe our children will. I am 56.

Lowcountry Bulldawg

September 27th, 2010
11:03 am

rather CMR go…

BAMA dude

September 27th, 2010
11:03 am

Unforced? Are you kidding? Both INT’s were thrown under duress. He was running for his life just trying to get rid of the ball on the second one- and Bama had the lead by then.

WinderDogg

September 27th, 2010
11:04 am

I would rather have gone 1 year early on Murray than 1 year late on Cox…still think we would redshirt Lattimore if he was here.

DIT

September 27th, 2010
11:05 am

“Cam Newton is the next coming of Donovan Mcnabb!”

I think that he will be better than Mcnabb! I was very impressed with the way he played. Maybe he will have the Flu when UGA goes to play them at Auburn. Can we put 15 guys on the field? Still might not help. ANyone else, that is a UGA fan, not feeling it for Colorado?

WinderDogg

September 27th, 2010
11:05 am

on another subject….Mallet was throwing the 2nd INT away…no duress

G8R GRAD

September 27th, 2010
11:06 am

Mr. Bitter:

“As a UGA alum, I would rather see a so-so thugless program with high academic standards than a team full of thugs and idiots. The rest of the student body has unbelievably high academic standards. Why not the football team?”

So would we.
As does UF.
Money, my friend, money.

Steve

September 27th, 2010
11:06 am

Well do you think auburn would be undefeated if they played at Ok and Lsu played at Ohio St? Just sayin….

Larry

September 27th, 2010
11:07 am

Last year at an Athens Touchdown Club meeting Richt said he’s going to “fix the problems” but sadly it’s not going to happen. When the Auburn-SC game came on Saturday night I quit watching Georgia because I had seen enough.

DIT

September 27th, 2010
11:07 am

Personally, I feel that CMR has earned the right through 2011 to turn it around, but yes, if he loses more than 2 next year…. see ya!

WinderDogg

September 27th, 2010
11:08 am

LMAO – tickets on craiglist for UGA games still at premium prices…scalpers don’t watch football!

Eric

September 27th, 2010
11:08 am

Wrong bama dude. The second, and game ending INT was not under duress. Mallet was rolling out with no one within 5 yards of him. I thought he was trying to throw it away and just didn’t make it which makes you wonder about his arm strength. If it wasn’t a throw away, he missed badly

UGA Insider

September 27th, 2010
11:12 am

Has anyone heard what happened to the kid #94 that Clint Boling cheap shotted Saturday night? I hope Boling did not end his season or keep him from missing games. I guess Boling was tired of having his ass whipped all night and decided to take some frustration out. Our O line is the nation’s worst without a doubt.

BAMA dude

September 27th, 2010
11:12 am

I am very surprised that UGA has fallen this far, this fast.

That said, I have been chastised before for talking about richt. My opinion of him has always been that he made his living when Tech had Gailey, we had Shula, and Florida had Zook (left Auburn out because Cheez-it and Tubby are about equal). Clemson and USCe weren’t exactly tearing it up either. Fact is, he had nobody to recruit against. So what happens?

Nick Saban, Urban Meyer, Steve Spuurier, and Paul Johnson.

All of a sudden there’s competition. Competition for good players and competent coaching. Once the competition really got strong, UGA under Richt started to crumble. He just ain’t that good.

gdawginkalamazoo

September 27th, 2010
11:13 am

All I have to say is that Russ better watch our for Ralphie this weekend. I don’t think Ralphie is too happy about being an underdog to a team with a temporary mascot.

BAMA dude

September 27th, 2010
11:14 am

It was a throw away Eric. Meaning he had to get rid of the ball with no receivers open. The way the second half had gone it was highly unlikely they were driving the length of the field anyway.

Eric

September 27th, 2010
11:14 am

Ok there was a defender within 5 yards but there was no reason for that INT. Not from a qb that’s suppose to be a nfl first rounder. He lost the Heisman and Ark lost the game on that play. Point is he didn’t get touched on the play by any bama guy and that by def is not under duress in my book.

G8R GRAD

September 27th, 2010
11:16 am

GATA

September 27th, 2010
11:17 am

Ironically, Richt is both the problem, and the solution. He CAN motivate this team to win, the question is will he? In my view, he should have stepped up last week. CMR’s learning curve is a bit slow unfortunately. You don’t tug on Superman’s cape, you don’t spit into the wind, you don’t lose to KY at home, you don’t lose to Miss State, and you don’t start out 0-3 in the SEC. Now that class is over, let’s see what he has left in the tank. Like it or not, CMR gives us the best CHANCE to win in the short term. We all knew this year would be suspect, though not to this degree. Consider our recruiting, 2011 schedule, and a seasoned Aaron Murray. This is not the ideal time for a regime change. But, if CMR can’t pull off a turn around this season, then there is no reason to expect any different for 2011, and we should start looking for long term gain. If that’s the case, I say offer two year contracts to hungry lower division Head Coaches, no more assistants, we need a leader. Throw as many of them against the wall as we haave to until we find one that sticks. UGA will ALWAYS have enough willing home grown talent to compete, and maybe that’s a good thing too, to get kids here that want to be at UGA just becuase it’s UGA. Things will turn around eventually, I just hope I live to see it.

Sick Em!

robodawg

September 27th, 2010
11:18 am

A month in, you lose perspective. But coming into the season, with a new defensive system (which we all wanted) and frosh QB, we knew this could be a difficult year. (Predictions of a 10-2 or better season were delusional.) We knew that 2011 would be where we should see the Dawgs in serious SEC contention (or else). That’s why Richt gets another year to prove himself.

There was pressure put on this year b/c of what happened at Florida (i.e. loss of lots of talent from last year.) But South Carolina was always in the better position to take advantage of this year. Plus, you put yourself at the top of your conference by making your own program better, not looking over your shoulder at what’s happening down south. (Gators probably will still win the East, btw. They’re loaded with five-star defensive talent, so their offense can afford to take some time to mature.)

And we should be rooting that Richt does get it done at Georgia — coaching changes come with no guarantees. Saban was the closest to a lock we’ve seen in a while. Urban Meyer was a good risk, but nobody knew for sure. Muschamp or Smart are no locks for SEC/MNC contention either.)

#1 BAMA FAN

September 27th, 2010
11:18 am

Hey Brotha….nothing wrong with picking your team (Gators) but what are the three freshman defensive players that compared themselves to the “Miami Heat” going to do with the ground and pound Saturday? I am sure Urban Meyer remembers his last trip to Tuscaloosa. Good luck…RTR

G8R GRAD

September 27th, 2010
11:18 am

Oh, and . . .

GO GATORS!

reebok

September 27th, 2010
11:19 am

How can anybody not love Mark Richt? He jumps off the high dive every single year!

Ron

September 27th, 2010
11:19 am

The players that Richt had while at FSu were the reason he was lauded and sought after. The noles led the NFL by far in players drafted in the 90’s on both offense and defense. When you have the caliber of players they did, you win. It’s easy to make calls when you have great play makers. Ans FSU always had a good offensive line. That’s what gave qb like Kannel and Weinke and even the rooster time to make plays. Uga had some good playmakers early last decade but they are not as good as before. They look smaller. Add the culture that he brought in, all these arrests and it’s a recipe for a downward spiral. All JMHO

BAMA dude

September 27th, 2010
11:20 am

Steve,

Oklahoma beat Utah state by 7, Air Force by 3, and Cincinnati by 2. They beat FSU by THIRTY. That is embarrassing.

And Miami us supposed to be the best team in the conference. The OSU game was not as close as the score.

That said, yeah they both probably beat Aubie.

GTBob

September 27th, 2010
11:20 am

Ryan Mallett was probably the biggest disappointment of the weekend. He had a chance to show he was a great quarterback and could hang with the big boys and he choked completely when his team needed him the most. He threw away his teams chance for a MNC and his own chance at a Heisman.

gdawginkalamazoo

September 27th, 2010
11:22 am

How about benching all the starters? Every single one of them for a quarter or half and use the second and third string. If they keep the game close leave them in for the remainder. I’ll bet those kids will want to play smash mouth football and earn a starting position.

Also remove every single redshirt from every player available and give them an opportunity to play. That might motivate them to at least stay sober.

DIT

September 27th, 2010
11:23 am

GATA & robodawg

I could not have said it better myself. I was down yesterday and starting to break my support for CMR, but your both right. We knew this year would be tough. I think what get’s most of us Dawg people is not so much the defense. Saw that coming, but the poor execution of the offense. No one expected that. I expected a high scoring machine and that our defense would give up a ton of points as well.
Of course the arrests don’t help the cause. I was glad to see that CMR did not hesitate to kick that LB off the team. He should have started doing that 10 arrests ago.

Tell it like it is

September 27th, 2010
11:23 am

JB….Nothing you post is going to change the fate of coach Richt,so sit back and be a fan insted of blowing hate at coach Richt and the GA team.Coach Richt is the best man for the job at this time and will get the program turned around.Nothing is worse than a fair weather fan! so take your nagative thoughs and shouv’em!

BAMA dude

September 27th, 2010
11:24 am

Uh, Eric?

How can you lose the game on a play when you were behind and on your own end of the field?

They barely has 100 yards of offense in the second half and had three points. Zero in the fourth quarter.

But no, he isn’t Heisman worthy. That will come down to Ingram and Pryor, with the nod going to Pryor since they don’t like repeat winners.

And Cam Newton won’t sniff New York. Andrew Luck will be there with Mark and Terrelle.

robodawg

September 27th, 2010
11:25 am

Mallett’s INT that gave Bama the lead was a bad one. The ball sailed on him, way over the head of an open receiver. Not what you expect from an NFL QB, even if he was about to get hit.

Steve

September 27th, 2010
11:26 am

But they are sitting there ranked #8. lol
You can try and dissect each game all you want. The point is when a big team goes to play another big team ooc on the road, home teams get up for those games more than when they play some patsy. It’s kinda like when you were a kid. You for more excited on halloween than valentines day for all that candy. lol It’s not easy playing in Norman or at the Horseshoe. One thing is true the ACC has by far the hardest ooc schedule this year. The big 10 is a joke.

Eric

September 27th, 2010
11:30 am

bama
They weren’t on their side of the field. They were at the Bama 48 when it happened with 1:55 left. Plenty of time left and sorry but they were due for a score. Kinda like against uga the week before. He made a poor decision and the bama player made a great play and it cost him a lot.

404

September 27th, 2010
11:30 am

Looks like the rest of the SEC has figured out the
“blueprint” for that gimmick pro-style offense that UGAG runs.

ROTFLMAO

OnTheMoney

September 27th, 2010
11:30 am

Enter your comments here

producewiz

September 27th, 2010
11:30 am

poor spurrrier, garcia is his doug johnson from gator days.you can could count on both of them screwing up. they do and they did

GATA

September 27th, 2010
11:31 am

gdawginkalamazoo

Exactly! I mean why not, for crying out loud what do we have to lose at this point. And, seeing CMR willing to take a step like that, or any step for that matter, to get things turned around, would do much to calm the fanbase and garner our support. It’s that kind of thinking and determination to win that is lacking. Give them a reason to stay sober…I love it!