Will Muschamp back in Georgia (and other nuggets)

Will Muschamp steps back over the Georgia state border tonight when he speaks at the Atlanta Gator Club. (AP photo)

Will Muschamp steps back over the Georgia state border tonight when he speaks at the Atlanta Gator Club. (AP photo)

First, an update: No moving vans spotted at Philips Arena yet.

Now, back to college football.

Will Muschamp makes his triumphant return to Georgia, although probably not how some Bulldogs fans once envisioned. He is speaking at the Atlanta Gator Club tonight. As a Gator.
I’ll be there and will have a chance to speak to the new Florida coach beforehand his talk to Florida fans, so if you have something in particular you would like to know — other than, “How can you do this to us?” — let me know.

Anyway, given tonight’s plans, I thought a college football appetizer this morning would be appropriate. Let’s start with …

♦ 1. Are the Gators going to be a “disappointment”?

ESPN.com did kind of a strange poll, asking readers what will be the most disappointing team in the SEC next season. The thing is, fans were asked to choose from only these five schools: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Mississippi State, South Carolina. ESPN’s explanation: “There are a handful of teams that could compete for the SEC title this fall and a few who could be in the thick of the national title hunt toward the end of the season. But there aren’t enough spots for everyone and in the wacky world of sports, one team will fail to live up to the hype.” They excluded Georgia. Complain to them, not me. After more than 38,000 votes, here are the results: 1. Florida (35 percent); 2. South Carolina (27 percent); 3. Arkansas (16 percent); 4. Alabama (12 percent); 5. Mississippi State (11 percent).

♦ 2. Spurrier extending Garcia ANOTHER lifeline?

South Carolina quarterback Stephen Garcia has been suspended five times in his college career, most recently for showing up at  leadership seminar after having been drinking alcohol in April. At that time, he was suspended indefinitely. But when asked at a Gamecocks’ fan festival if Garcia would be back in the fall, coach Steve Spurrier said: “Stephen Garcia, in all likelihood, will probably maybe be given another chance if he behaves himself the way he should. I think he still has to do some things here in the next couple of months to prove worthy of being a student-athlete at South Carolina.” Probably maybe. That’s about as definite as it gets.

3.Mel Kiper likes the ACC and SEC

Kiper’s first 2012 “Big Board” is out. Of the 25 players on the board, 13 are from either the SEC (five) or ACC (eight). Here’s the list of players, with Kiper’s analysis of the SEC and ACC players. There are no Georgia or Georgia Tech players on the list.

1. Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford.
2. Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina. (Analysis: They haven’t been lacking defensive talent in Chapel Hill. Coples is next in line, a gifted pass-rusher suited to be a pure 4-3 defensive end at the next level.)
3. Matt Kalil, OT, USC.
4. Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina. (Analysis: A perpetual mismatch, Jeffery has been unstoppable since he got to campus. A huge target, makes all the catches and shows surprising burst, given such a huge frame at wideout.)
5. Matt Barkley, QB, USC.
6. Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford.
7. Justin Blackmon, WR, Oregon State.
8. Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State.
9. Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama. (Analysis: One of three players on the Crimson Tide to crack the Board. Great length for the position. Kirpatrick is solid technically and well-schooled.)
10. Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma.
11. Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa.
12. Vontaze Burfict, LB, Arizona State.
13. Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama. (Analysis: A physical freak, I see Richardson as a better overall pro prospect than former teammate Mark Ingram. Explosive and so hard to tackle.)
14. Donte Paige-Moss, DE, North Carolina. (Analysis: He’s bigger than a lot of people have him listed. Paige-Moss gets a bump here because he exploded in the second half of 2010. He needs to carry that momentum into 2011.)
15. Cliff Harris, CB, Oregon.
16. Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College. (Analysis: Dependable tackling machine, Kuechly’s tape shines. Makes great reads, sees the play developing, sheds blockers well and has a ton of experience in just two years.)
17. Jayron Hosley, CB, Virginia Tech. (Analysis: One of the most instinctive corners I’ve ever seen. Led the nation in interceptions and seems to have a sixth sense on routes.)
18. Ray-Ray Armstrong, S, Miami. (Analysis: Currently the top safety on the Board. Armstrong has seen the field plenty in just two seasons. Good size, takes good routes and can play near the line.)
19. Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina. (Analysis: Another SEC corner with good size, Gilmore has played well against some top competition. Well-schooled, he has a chance to move up the Board this season.)
20. Manti Te’o, LB, Notre Dame.
21. Chase Minnifield, CB, Virginia. (Analysis: The last corner on the Board, Minnifield has been dependable and was the best corner on a team that saw Ras-I Dowling drafted early in 2011.)
22. Jared Crick, DT, Nebraska.
23. Marcus Forston, DT, Miami. (Analysis: A big-time recruit, Forston has continued to develop and could move up the Board if he adds consistency. Dominant at times, but has had some off games, too.)
24. Andre Branch, DE, Clemson. (Analysis: Another defensive end coming out of Death Valley, Branch can get to the passer and has a lot of experience, and will be a fifth-year senior in 2011.)
25. Courtney Upshaw, LB, Alabama. (Analysis: A solid linebacker, another in a very talented Bama defensive unit. Upshaw saw the field as a freshman and has continued to progress.)

4. Harvey Updyke vs. Mother Nature
In case you missed it, a grand jury issued six new indictments against accused Auburn tree poisoner Harvey Updyke, possibly the dumbest human being on the face of the earth, who allegedly poisoned the historic oak trees at Toomer’s Corner. Personally, I’m not pushing for Updyke to get sentenced for 20-to-life. But I do think he should be forced to spend the entire 2011 football season wearing a Cam Newton jersey. Also maybe have him stand at Toomer’s Corner and let Tigers fans “TP” him for 30 straight days.

♦ 5. And speaking of Cam Newton . . .

Jim Tressel, who may be circling the NCAA drain at Ohio State, has hired the Birmingham lawfirm of Lightfoot, Franklin and White. That’s the same firm that represented Auburn during the Newton investigation. Gene Marsh, the attorney who will represent Tressel, used to work for the NCAA infractions committee. The lesson here: It’s a lot more profitable working for the accused.

By Jeff Schultz

– Earlier: Forget Hawks, Thrashers — J.B. Smith has other issues

– Earlier: Hawks’ decision to bring back Rick Sund was expected

Follow me on Twitter @JeffSchultzAJC; friend meat Facebook.com/JeffSchultzAJC

193 comments Add your comment

What?

May 19th, 2011
11:28 am

It’s just trees…..

FIRST

Herschel Talker

May 19th, 2011
11:29 am

Schultzie:

You the man!

HT

jaglaw

May 19th, 2011
11:33 am

Third!!!! or maybe worse…….just like my dogs.

Joey

May 19th, 2011
11:38 am

“one team will fail to live up to the hype”
*********************************
Jeff, UGA is not on the list, because there is no longer any “hype” regarding our football program. That’s how far Richt has let us fall since preseason ‘08.

Spanky

May 19th, 2011
11:39 am

Good combo of nouns and verbs, Schultz! Now, let’s hope this Updyke jack-wagon stays away from our hedges in Athens! LOL

jaglaw

May 19th, 2011
11:40 am

Tressel should leave. It is too much. The public opinion will never be changed. Yes, some OSU fans love him, but more devastating is this: Those HS recriuts that are “thugs” or “have problems with rules” will want to go play for a coach that will (a) bend the rules and (b) has screwed up too.
It just opens the door for more bad stuff to happen. Mark my words, it will get worse before it gets better at OSU. I say this objectively. I have no ill will toward OSU…..why should I?? They ususally guarantee and SEC bowl win each year.

Delbert D.

May 19th, 2011
11:41 am

Looks like Alabama vs. South Carolina in the SEC Championship Game.

Herschel Talker

May 19th, 2011
11:42 am

“Jeff, UGA is not on the list, because there is no longer any “hype” regarding our football program. That’s how far Richt has let us fall since preseason ‘08.”

Well said, Joey. Richt is a pathetic joke.

jaglaw

May 19th, 2011
11:44 am

Spanky, I assume your remark carries a fear Tressell may coach at UGA? Dont worry, as bad as CMR record has been in the SEC over the last 9 games, Tressell’s is much worse ….(1-8) or somthing like that?

jaglaw

May 19th, 2011
11:45 am

BTW, the extra “L” at the end of Tressel’s name is for “loser”.

jaglaw

May 19th, 2011
11:48 am

Opps Spanky, I see now what you were talking about. Sorry.

jaglaw

May 19th, 2011
11:51 am

THE REAL TRUTH.

Stress is not the main reason CUM left UF. CUM left because he had lost control of his players. I live in North Florida and so many arrests were “covered up”. The list is long….one of the Orlando journalists has the list. I have read it. Its crazy long. Yes, longer than CMR’s and the level of charges are more severe. Also, it shows a pattern…..if you started, you didnt get near the punishment as a bench warmer.

My point: CWM has his work cut out for him.

Phillip

May 19th, 2011
12:01 pm

Unlike some of you, I still have faith in Mark Richt. The teams have underperformed in recent years, but I do believe UGA will compete for the SEC title this year. Murray just might be the best quarterback in the league, and the defense should be much better with Jenkins at the NG.

Buckeye

May 19th, 2011
12:05 pm

Fear The Vest

SOGADOG

May 19th, 2011
12:05 pm

Mr. Schultz,

I would interested to know if Coach Muschamp intends to coach the defense for the Gators and act as the defensive coordinator or will he step back and take the hands off CEO approach and let others run the defense and call the plays on the field.

SOGADOG

May 19th, 2011
12:06 pm

Sorry: I would “be” interested to know…. I need an editor.

Calhoundawg

May 19th, 2011
12:10 pm

God Bless Coach Richt. God Bless Georgia. UGA — love it or leave it. Go Dawgs !!!!!

Joey

May 19th, 2011
12:11 pm

I agree with your take on the D, and especially Murray, Phillip. However, Murray will still have Bobo gameplanning and playcalling for him, so it will probably be more of the same – us beating most poor teams, but losing to winning teams with good defensive coordinators.

Hope you are right, though.

joe cox

May 19th, 2011
12:11 pm

man i love the dogs!

SSIgator

May 19th, 2011
12:11 pm

“They excluded Georgia”

Are you saying they SHOULD be on the list? Seriously? After a 6-7 season (even though Richt has been studying “cutting edge football” since January) an O-line that will be shaky at best, no main primier taget to throw to, BooBoo still running the offense and recruits who may not make grades. Why anyone would expect UGA to be much better than last year is truly a mystery. I know Richt says. “I know what the hell I am doing”, but the trend over the last three years proves otherwise. Yet the KoolAid machine keeps humming along.

Joey

May 19th, 2011
12:12 pm

jerry

May 19th, 2011
12:13 pm

Bama 3 players on the “Big Board”, UGA, zero. Better recruiting, better coaching, and less preaching.

McDawg

May 19th, 2011
12:15 pm

tell him to get the hell out

Joey

May 19th, 2011
12:16 pm

Buckeye

May 19th, 2011
12:17 pm

Mandel of si.com says it best……………

In all my travels, I’m not sure I’ve ever come across a fan base whose self-perception is so far from reality. Georgia fashions itself a national power in the vein of Ohio State, USC, et. al., based primarily off one glorious three-year run 30 years ago with Herschel Walker (and some kick-butt years in the 1940s).

Keep “dreaming” dawgs…………….

Columbus Dawg

May 19th, 2011
12:19 pm

I have a different take on why the Dawgs were not on the list. Could it be that the Dawgs have the least chance of disapointing this season? Also, as for as asking Mediocre Mushchamp “How could you do this to us”, I’ll address that now: The Georgia/Florida series will officially turn back to the Dawgs beginning with the 2011 season. The FU crowd in Gainesville Florida will be the ones that are disapointed, and I do not just mean with the 2011 season, but with this stupid hire they have made with Mr. Mediocre. He was a mediocre player, and will suck as a head coach. All right all you trolling belly crawlers, lets hear what you got.

joe suggs

May 19th, 2011
12:21 pm

To buckeye, year in and year out you do not play anybody ! Except in NC game . Did you win ???

McDawg

May 19th, 2011
12:23 pm

Buckeye-whats your record against UGA

whats OSU done lately -win they Big 2 and get massacred in the bowl game

the emperoer has no vest

40Capt

May 19th, 2011
12:31 pm

Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama. (Analysis: One of three players on the Crimson Tide to crack the Board. Great length for the position.

okay, now we’re using length instead of height for fb players also? Someone started saying this about 5 years ago to describe tall b-ball players, now you hear it all the time, and it’s annoying as hell. Instead of someone being tall they have “great length” What’s wrong w/ saying someone is tall??

Eaassyy

May 19th, 2011
12:31 pm

Buckeye, you are almost as bad as a Techie trolling the uga boards desperate for attention. Almost.

1eyedJack

May 19th, 2011
12:34 pm

Jeff, could you find out Muschamp’s itinerary and the route he’s taking to the Atlanta Gator Club? I need to give Guido and Bubber their orders for tonight. That’s what we duz with traitors. Send ‘em to sleep with the fishes.

G8R GRAD

May 19th, 2011
12:34 pm

Columbus:

Brantley completed 4 of 14 for a whopping 45 yards (against his own players!) in this spring’s game.
God, help us!

Matt

May 19th, 2011
12:35 pm

FOr UGA to have a dissappointing year they would have to finish 3-9. I don’t think they will be that bad. Considering 7-5 would be an improvent from last year and the fact that we have no offensive weapons I’d say it will be hard for them to “dissapoint”. I should hope they could at least finish 6-6.

However, if they continue their downward spiral they will finish 4-8. If they go 0-2 I think Richt will be canned.

dawgfacedboy

May 19th, 2011
12:38 pm

How frustrating will it be when OSU goes 5-0 during the suspensions because the teams they play are a joke. They will still be in the NC hunt by the time everyone comes back. Makes me sick.

G8R GRAD

May 19th, 2011
12:44 pm

Jeff:

” . . .circling the NCAA drain . . . ”
Great stuff!
You should consider being a journalist!

Dawgonit

May 19th, 2011
12:44 pm

Spurrier is doing it brick by brick: Jeffrey, Gilmore, Lattimore, Clowney. While no one is looking, USCe is beginning to resemble not only an SEC contender but dare I say, a national contender-with or without Garcia. Just took him longer than everyone thought.

Shouldn't the REAL point of the ACC/SEC article...

May 19th, 2011
12:47 pm

…have been that of the 13, 9 were from the lowly ACC, while only 4 were from the mighty SEC????

Columbus Dawg

May 19th, 2011
12:54 pm

The Cocks won the east in 2010. The Cocks lost five games in 2010. They will probably not lose five in 2011, but will not win the east.

phil

May 19th, 2011
12:54 pm

Muschamp – Take your traitor self on back down to Gainesville….what a bum.

Columbus Dawg

May 19th, 2011
12:56 pm

The Cocks will not win the east this year. They were an embarrasment to the conference last year having lost five games and still went to the dome. The South Carolina Gamecocks will be back on the hind end in 2011.

Tech Tard

May 19th, 2011
12:58 pm

Lets take a look at Kipers big board from last year.

My point is: A LOT CAN CHANGE IN ONE YEAR.

Leon "Pooch-Kick" Trotsky

May 19th, 2011
1:02 pm

Dre Kirkpatrick ranked ahead of Trent Richardson? Kiper needs to change the water in his bong.

Coach Johnson

May 19th, 2011
1:03 pm

Let’s all welcome Coach Mustbeachump to the list of unbalanced SEC coachs…you too may be a legend like Coach Satan,Coach Cheesedip and have a statue one day! Acc rules in the classroom and on the field!

cattledawg

May 19th, 2011
1:06 pm

I never wanted muschamp as coach anyway. He was the dc at texas and his defense stunk, and I dont want Smart either.

258DAWG

May 19th, 2011
1:06 pm

I wonder how many cases of drug test kits he will pick up while in Atlanta?
What do you think SSI?

schmeckdawg

May 19th, 2011
1:06 pm

F*&k him!!!!

Go DAWGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AltamahaDawg

May 19th, 2011
1:10 pm

Hopefully for Tressle, Delaney will exhibit as much artistic licence with the rule book as Slive does.

Dawg Gone

May 19th, 2011
1:11 pm

I have to smile the new Gator HC has no experience as a HC in the SEC or anywhere else. The OC is installing a new offense, there are questions about the QB that have yet to be answered. And Gator fans and the HC are screaming we are no.1…and they call Dog fans delusional. I think he will prove to be a good coach but come on…what makes a Gator fan think he is the second coming of CUM ?

Tallcarl

May 19th, 2011
1:13 pm

When a person at work does little actual work we tell them they should back up to the pay window from shame. The same couuld be said for The great O.S.U. and the once proud title town in Alabama for their scheldule.

Tech Tard

May 19th, 2011
1:13 pm

^ Thats what she said