Georgia gets hammered and doubts about Richt grow

The looks on the faces of Georgia coach Mark Richt and assistants Todd Grantham (center) and Rodney Garner (left) say it all. (Brant Sanderlin/AJC)

The looks on the faces of Georgia coach Mark Richt and defensive assistants Todd Grantham (center) and Rodney Garner (left) say it all Saturday night. (Brant Sanderlin/AJC)

(UPDATED: 12:10 a.m.)

This is when you start struggling to remember the good times. This is when a Georgia fan thinks back to an early seven-year span under Mark Richt when Georgia went 24-11 against ranked opponents and wonders, “Wait, did that really happen? Or was it those brownies I ate?”

If it wasn’t bad enough that the Bulldogs were underdogs (get used to that) in their season opener and a relative home game Saturday to a school from Idaho — something difficult for so many to swallow — the team’s response made all past criticism seem understated. With eight months to prepare since a humiliating effort against Central Florida in the Liberty Bowl, Georgia couldn’t give Boise State any tougher of a game than it usually receives from Wyoming.

Save some trickeration — an 80-yard touchdown run by Brandon Boykin that gave the Dogs an early 7-0 lead — it was Boise State’s night. It was Boise State’s celebration. It was Boise State that played smart and physical, the kind of performance that gets teams into BCS bowls. Remember BCS bowls?

Both teams made loud statements. Georgia just made the wrong one. Following that Boykin touchdown, the Bulldogs saw their opponents real off 28 straight points. Boise State went on to win 35-21, and it didn’t even feel that close.

Georgia’s defense looked as bad in its second season under Todd Grantham as it did in the first. The Boise State offensive line dominated. Quarterback Kellen Moore at times seemed to toy with defenders.

If only the Dogs had more than eight months to prepare.

If only they had completely revamped their strength and conditioning program.

Oh, wait a minute …

Since going 24-11 against ranked teams, Richt is 2-9. That’s more than a trend. The next ranked opponent also is the first SEC opponent: South Carolina, next week in Athens. The level of desperation just went up.

Richt must realize that. He just didn’t show it after the game. In fact, what he showed was somewhat alarming. After some standard introductory comments — “They were better than we were. We’ve got a lot of work to do before next week. But we know everybody is 0-0 in league play” — Richt actually laughed. Yes, laughed. He turned to Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Chip Towers, who had been pestering Richt all week about the status of safety Bacarri Rambo, laughed and said that Rambo would not be suspended for the South Carolina game. Richt had been playing coy with the media, but Rambo was held out Saturday as expected for an unspecified violation of team rules.

Laughter may be a defensive mechanism for Richt. But his team just got whacked with a 2 x 4 in the season opener. Is laughing in the post-game new conference really a good idea?

Richt has been getting a lot of heat. He should. Fact is, Georgia’s slide hasn’t been merely about the ascension of Alabama and Florida in the SEC. In the last two years alone, the Dogs have lost games to Oklahoma State, LSU, Tennessee, Kentucky, South Carolina, Arkansas, Mississippi State, Colorado, Auburn and Central Florida. How long ago was it when you could not have imagined Georgia losing to many of those teams?

The Dogs suffered borderline humiliation on their first possession. They had a false start penalty before the first snap. They had a false start three plays later. They were whistled for delay of game before punting. Before the first quarter was over, the Dogs also were called for an illegal formation for having five players in the backfield (the penalty was declined) and they burned a timeout before a Boise State punt for having only 10 players on the field.

This is why having the biggest, strongest and fastest players sometimes doesn’t matter.

Boykin’s touchdown would be the Dogs’ only score of the first half and it comprised more than half of the team’s yardage (151). The Dogs totaled 71 yards in the other 29 plays.

Georgia’s defense looked strong for the first few Boise State series. But the Broncos appeared to make some adjustments in pass protection and Moore starting find holes in the zone. He moved the offense well in three of BSU’s last four possessions in the half, two resulting in touchdowns (the other, an interception by Branden Smith).

Boise State’s offensive line took over in the second quarter. Moore wasn’t sacked all game and completed 28 of 34 passes, three for touchdowns. He could’ve had a Baracalounger in the backfield to recline before some of his throws. At the outset of the third quarter, Georgia looked lost and overmatched on defense. Moore went 7-for-7 for 69 yards on Boise State’s first possession of the half. Then on second down from the Dogs’ 7, running back Doug Martin faked Smith into oblivion and danced into the end zone for a 21-7 lead.

It wasn’t over. But it was over. Once Boise State’s offense got going, Georgia couldn’t stop it.

The slide continues. It’s uncertain if Richt can stop that, either.

By Jeff Schultz

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

1,481 comments Add your comment

SEC

September 3rd, 2011
11:43 pm

HOW BOUT DEM DAWGS? LMAOOOOOOOOOOO 1-9 against ranked opponents soon to be 1-10

DogDawg

September 3rd, 2011
11:44 pm

Richt must take the blame but Bobo is so over his head …

HAHAHA!!!

September 3rd, 2011
11:46 pm

The “Dawgs” suck!!!!!!

HAHAHA!!!

September 3rd, 2011
11:47 pm

but their in the top 10 in recruiting…

Spurrier

September 3rd, 2011
11:48 pm

hahahahaha. don’t know which is funnier, the play or the arena league uniforms.

SEC

September 3rd, 2011
11:48 pm

Mark Richt was busy doing Ford commercials about being Ford tough while his team played KIA soft

Ghost of Dodd

September 3rd, 2011
11:49 pm

Welcome to the Bill Lewis Era of UGA football… Muaahhh!

Jorge

September 3rd, 2011
11:49 pm

Larry

September 3rd, 2011
11:50 pm

The Dawgs just suck. They can’t be coached; they don’t think; they don’t react; they don’t block, they don’t tackle; but they brag really well. Too bad they don’t back it up; then they would just be braggarts, instead of braggarts and losers. If ever a team needed the death penalty, it’s this one.

Lenny

September 3rd, 2011
11:50 pm

We lined up in the shotgun on an awful lot of 3rd and short situations.

alex

September 3rd, 2011
11:50 pm

entire staff is an embarssment. Team is out of shape,new conditioning coach!!

huffsleeper

September 3rd, 2011
11:50 pm

Boise State’s superior coaching took over in the first quarter. No discipline (3 penalties on the first 4 plays) Going away from the five man rush which was the only thing that stopped Boise State early on.(Boise rushed five regularly with success) A flawed punt return plan which let the punter hold the ball 3 extra seconds for his initial coverage to get down field (rush the punter, hello). Superior athletes were dominated by better coaching and smarter players(they don’t have silly exuberance over small plays) The coaching staff as I have been saying for three years is a complete and miserable failure. How much longer do we put up with this.

Alphare

September 3rd, 2011
11:51 pm

Jeff, great minds think alike, we both called for BSU to win. Congratulation to your call.

chickenman

September 3rd, 2011
11:51 pm

Well ill give a bye here… boise is a good team…very disciplined.. we are not. Things better change next week.. for christ sake start crowell.. and learn to block

Angie O'Plasty

September 3rd, 2011
11:51 pm

Wow- Boise State put some foot-puddin on the Dawgs !

JOS

September 3rd, 2011
11:51 pm

I liked the way the Bulldog Nation stayed and pulled for their team until the very end – oh wait, those were empty red seats. Can’t wait for the excuses to start…

Lenny

September 3rd, 2011
11:51 pm

If you can’t run the ball, you can’t win football games. Period.

dawgforlife

September 3rd, 2011
11:51 pm

Let the Dan Mullen era begin in 3 months. Better days are ahead for Bulldog nation.

average joe

September 3rd, 2011
11:51 pm

The wheels are coming off. It wasnt even close. Disapointing day again.

TheDawgGroomer

September 3rd, 2011
11:52 pm

The is nothing better than the silence from the bulldog dysfunctional family. You season is over before you started, that must be the hardest part for you guys, geez I can’t imagine being a fan for them. A coach that can’t win important games, stupid uniforms, overrated players…there is always some basket UGA fans put all their eggs in that is supposed to be the spark to win a championship. I think if the Athens corrections department had a team they would be better, they have all your good players.

Just kidding guys, no offense (pun intended). Way to represent the SEC. Perhaps you should change your mascot to a Poodle. I will give you a free grooming.

Kenny

September 3rd, 2011
11:52 pm

Richt has to go. Now. I can’t wait to read his bromides about being “men” and how “men” respond to losses. My question is how does McGarity respond? How does the AD respond to horrible coaching in every phase of the game?

Buzz

September 3rd, 2011
11:52 pm

hahaha….I hope SC empties Sanford as fast as Boise did the Georgia Dome.

Heath

September 3rd, 2011
11:53 pm

But, he won the division a decade ago, so he has earned the right to destroy the program, as all of you wizard writers kept reminding us the last few years. Is 4-8 good enough for the AJC writing staff, or does he have to have them losing to Division II schools before fans are justified in saying enough is enough? We’re almost as worthless as Tech at this point.

Richard Alpert

September 3rd, 2011
11:53 pm

All-American athletes everywhere, a fantastic QB, stud freshmen RB and WR, and two 350+ D linemen.
How does THIS scenario fail? Awful playcalling and preparation..That’s how

tlaw

September 3rd, 2011
11:53 pm

Can’t fire Richt..He stacked up lots of wins……against Ron Zook, Mike Shula and other bums..l,ao..funny how ppl brag about his record but know the level of competition(the coaches) that were in the SEC when he won those games!

Tater

September 3rd, 2011
11:53 pm

I must have missed the Boise State dream team recruiting story ??

not so sure

September 3rd, 2011
11:53 pm

i have been on Richts side through all of this but the performance overall tonight if we do not get the train on teh tracks ASAP i may jump off the track myself

Dream Team

September 3rd, 2011
11:53 pm

LMAO @ all you gullible suckers. I tried to tell you. Where is the king athens idiot blogger.

Buzz

September 3rd, 2011
11:53 pm

Guys this is one game. The season really begins next week.

Sincerely,
Buck Belue

National Championship Hopes Dashed-Again!

September 3rd, 2011
11:53 pm

Here are comments posted on AJC blogs earlier n the week by the most delusional redneck fanbases in the South.

tony
August 27th, 2011
9:15 pm
I watched the replay of the Miss St, SC and Ark games 4 times each. Had Ga ran the ball more in those games the outcome would of been different. The defense played better than what the record indicate.
If Crowell gets 20 to 25 carries a game, I believe we will go undefeated. If Murray pass on 1st and 2nd downs like he did last season, I think they will lose 2 games. The SEC won 5 straight NC because those teams had a good running game and a dominate defense.

How did that undeated prediction work out for you tony?

bulldog born and bred

September 3rd, 2011
11:54 pm

we looked like a bunch of clowns and played like a bunch of clowns we gotta clean house

Kellen

September 3rd, 2011
11:54 pm

I am the reason why you DONT pick against a senior over sophmore, due for a slump. DUHHHHH

Richard Alpert

September 3rd, 2011
11:54 pm

Oh and “BUZZ”, at least we didn’t open up with a 1-AA school ONLINE. Suck it nerds

bh

September 3rd, 2011
11:54 pm

this really hurts. i really do admire Richt as a man and a Christian, and i so hope the team can be turned around, but this was simply an awful display of football. bobo is just so predictable and our defense looked like they had not conditioned at all over the summer. I will always be a bulldog fan, and i will not give up on them, but this is really bad. hard to believe at times.

Ghost of Dodd

September 3rd, 2011
11:55 pm

Who will be the interim coach when they lose to GT?

Kellen

September 3rd, 2011
11:55 pm

YEah it begins next week. When you lose by 14 again. Idiots. Isiah was awesome!!!

tampadawgs

September 3rd, 2011
11:55 pm

die hartd UGA fan….. but richts time has come and passed

Just wait

September 3rd, 2011
11:55 pm

Just wait until next year…the DAWGS are going all the way!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

depressed

September 3rd, 2011
11:55 pm

Our game plans just don’t add up. We throw deep on 1st down. We run on 3rd and long. Our bigger offensive and defensive lines got out-played. I can’t help but feel we were out coached and that Boise St. (and most other teams we’ve played in the past 2 years) had a much better game plan than we did. One that was more sure to work. Our game plans seem to be the exact same thing every game. It’s not getting us very far.

FLA DAWG

September 3rd, 2011
11:55 pm

Sickening…………….absolutely sickening.

I can’t recall an ERA when The Dawgs performed so badly.

Coach Dooley, if you care anything at all about UGA call Adams / McGarity or whom the he!! ever you need to call to get this ship turned around.

I wouldn’t send my dog to UGA much less my kids at this point.

FLA DAWG

Class of ‘79

How About This?

September 3rd, 2011
11:55 pm

You know what would be great? If the local media would hammer Richt and the UGA staff and run them out of the state like they did to Paul Hewitt. Doubt it’ll happen.

Buzz ME

September 3rd, 2011
11:56 pm

DAWGS are legends in their own minds. 5 star recruits? Where’s the shine. Crowell? Oh well.
Lots of talk from a very over-rated, average team.. How sweet it is! Loss number two is just a week away

M. Richt

September 3rd, 2011
11:56 pm

won’t see the end of the season on the UGA sideline

PowerMad

September 3rd, 2011
11:56 pm

Todd Grantham and Mike Bobo don’t have what it takes to be successful in the SEC. Bobo might run the worst offense in college football. And hey, Todd…can you throw in a blitz? Maybe just once? I’m tired of watching great players fail to maximize their potential because UGA can’t take advantage of their talent. Make no mistake this loss was about coaching. Period. Missed tackles, dropped passes, blown coverages, silly penalties and tired players–it’s been the same story for the past three years. AD McGarity, will you please fix this? Your head coach seems unwilling/unable to do so.

DirtyBirdShawty

September 3rd, 2011
11:56 pm

Too much shotgun. That’s not UGA football Bo Bo’s gotta Go Go.

Boise in ATL

September 3rd, 2011
11:56 pm

Addressing the UGA folks who gave me so much grief the last few weeks – UGA was just not ready – this team has a long long way to go.

I was pleasantly surprised how physically superior and how better are athletes were over UGA”s.

The UGA O-LINE was Big and Slow – was pretty easy to dominate.
Our O-Line – and our 5″-11 center our played both UGA’s 340lb nose tackles and UGA’s Defense.

That was a whipping.

The big thing was out players were much better prepared and executed extremely well, Our schemes were way better than UGA’s
Our coaches were way ahead of UGA coaches – we knew what to do and when to do it. – really dictated the game.

Whipped – Game Over. UGA may not be our toughest game this year – that was actually pretty easy.

Dream Team

September 3rd, 2011
11:56 pm

Now if we only had Chris Petersen. You stupid ignorant uga fans. Wow how dumb you are. Everyone but YOU knew the outcome 9 months ago. So sad how dumb you are. WAKE EP idiots.

Please kill the ......

September 3rd, 2011
11:56 pm

golden goose…oh please.

Ya’ll are a pathetic bunch with all your “G”’s on the front of your car and your bulldog statue outside your front door. Don’t you see you are your school’s worst enema?

National Championship Hopes Dashed-Again!

September 3rd, 2011
11:57 pm

Another fine nugget from themost delusional fanbase in America.

Athens Dawg
August 27th, 2011
9:29 pm
I wanna know why Boise is obviously the HEAVY favorite? I just don’t get it. I heard the same crap about Hawaii. Same crap. WAC and SEC is just not the same! But if you guys don’t want to see it that way, you’ll see it next Saturday. I swear you will. Georgia is hungrier than ever, the players want it bad and if this game comes down to who wants it more, UGA wins by a mile.
I think everyone believe Georgia will win but just don’t want to admit it. That’s called a hater. They know UGA will win but they wouldn’t dare come on a UGA blog and admit that. I think it’s funny. LOSERS!

Who’s the loser now Athens Dawg? (Trying not to LOL).

Buzz ME

September 3rd, 2011
11:58 pm

oh one more thing…HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA…