LIVE BLOG: Georgia tries to avoid ‘trap’ against Tennessee

Bulldogs safety Bacarri Rambo goes through warmups before the Tennessee game. (Brant Sanderlin/AJC)

Bulldogs safety Bacarri Rambo goes through warmups at Sanford Stadium. (Brant Sanderlin)

ATHENS – So is this affirmation week or trap week?

Georgia plays Tennessee today. Honestly, I was a little surprised when the Glantz-Culver line (adopted by the AJC and Weekend Predictions, Inc. as the official point spread ) opened with the Bulldogs as a 15-point favorite and it immediately dropped to 13½ (though it has inched back up to 14).

The Dogs are ranked No. 5, and look like legitimate

Alec Olgetree, along with Bacarri Rambo, returns from a four-game suspension. (Brant Sanderlin/AJC)

Alec Olgetree, along with Bacarri Rambo, returns from a four-game suspension. (Brant Sanderlin/AJC)

title contenders. Other than some first-half hiccups in the SEC opener at Missouri, they have looked strong defensively and leveled Vanderbilt 48-3 last week. Tennessee isn’t as bad as some people think – Derek Dooley inherited a mess and really isn’t doing a bad job – but for the Volunteers’ defense to give up 555 yards at home in a 37-20 loss to Florida speaks to where the program is.

The “trap” concerns come from the fact Georgia plays at No. 6 South Carolina next week, in a game that conceivably could decide the SEC East. And, fact is, Georgia has laid some eggs against Tennessee in the past: a 45-19 loss at Knoxville in 2009, 35-14 loss at Knoxville in 2007, 51-33 loss in Athens in 2006, 19-14 loss in Athens in 2004.

But I think it’s more about this: People are waiting for something to go wrong. Georgia is 4-0, including 2-0 in the conference. It hasn’t started this strong since 2008, when it was 4-0 going into the infamous “blackout” game against Alabama, only to be body-slammed 41-30 at home.

In fact, the Dogs have not won their first three conference games in a season since 2005, when they started 5-0 (7-0 overall). Quarterback D.J. Shockley was injured and they lost the next game to Florida 14-10, as well as Auburn the following week. But they still won the SEC title that season.

The biggest news going into today’s game is the expected return of both safety Bacarri Rambo and linebacker Alec Ogletree. Coach Mark Richt has played coy on the subject all week but it has been widely reported that both players had been suspended for four games.

That’s all I’ve got for now. Time to open the cyber-venting lines. I’ll be back to chat shortly.

What are you thoughts about today’s game?

By Jeff Schultz

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1,545 comments Add your comment

Jon

September 29th, 2012
2:05 pm

I’m always nervous when we play Tennessee. At least we’re not in Knoxville. Go Dogs.

katherine

September 29th, 2012
2:05 pm

CHDawg

September 29th, 2012
2:07 pm

Tn is explosive, but the big unknown is how well our D plays with 9 and 18 back, and how well our line blocks. Ogeltree is a great player and maybe a lot of people have forgotten how well he plays. Turnovers could be the difference. I hope the Dawgs can keep the momentum rolling. GO Dawgs!

norman

September 29th, 2012
2:10 pm

Scary game indeed!

dawggirl

September 29th, 2012
2:12 pm

I wasn’t really nervous before, but now I am. We need to play mistake-free football, no penalties and no turnovers. And if we’re up big at the end somehow, get those starters off the field. We need to protect against injuries for next week.

dawggirl

September 29th, 2012
2:13 pm

Rambo and Ogletree back for sure!

B. Thenet

September 29th, 2012
2:16 pm

How good is this team? Who knows, they have played some very poor football teams, and looked pretty weak at times defensively. Missouri appears to be much worse than most had thought when they first played UGA.

It is way too soon to call this team a title contender, the only reason UGA is undefeated is because of the schedule.

They should roll over a much less talented Tennessee today.

rramo

September 29th, 2012
2:17 pm

No worries here! It’s time 2 let the big Dawgs eat!
Dawgs win going away 45-17. Go Dawgs!!!

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

September 29th, 2012
2:27 pm

Middle Tenn up 14 on GT!!! Half of the stadium is empty. Meanwhile, in Athens, i expect the Dawgs to come out strong and just dominate. Put the game away fast and focus on USC.

Jeauxseph

September 29th, 2012
2:32 pm

Jeff, good afternoon, glad to be back.
What the “atmosphere” like T-1hour to kickoff?

JSS

September 29th, 2012
2:33 pm

Heaven help you, I hope you at least got to see the kin before having to sit through 30 pages of pre-pubescent bloggers?

ARdawg

September 29th, 2012
2:33 pm

I’m not nervous and I hope them Dawgs ain’t either. We have the talent and the motivation. Murray can be the General here and lead the troops through some mistake free football. If not, it can be a nailbiter.

Anyway 48-24 GEORGIA!!!!

Tech is lethargic. We have to avoid that

GO DAWGS!!!!!

ARdawg

September 29th, 2012
2:35 pm

Oh yeah, Hiya Jeff!

Joey

September 29th, 2012
2:35 pm

Can’t really say about my thoughts right now, JS – I’m on my 3rd beer.

I do promise to slow down, and will be too nervous to keep this pace anyway in about 1 hour.

But – if both teams play to their potential, it should be about a 42- 21 affair, with the Bulldogs keeping their tight grip on a Top 5 ranking.

If, IF, we do, I bet ESPN Gameday packs up and heads to Columbia for the war next Sat.

First things first, though.

C'mon Man

September 29th, 2012
2:36 pm

Geesh I know they say we all look alike but that is clearly Alec Olgeltree and not Rambo in the picture

Barbie Doolies

September 29th, 2012
2:37 pm

Mama’s boy is gonna win today! Bank on it!

Pj

September 29th, 2012
2:44 pm

I imagine having tree and Rambo back will be motivation enough for the D – I just hope we play mistake free football and the crowd gets really involved. Go dawgs!

Max Sizemore

September 29th, 2012
2:44 pm

Georgia had better block that noseguard.

Tampa Gator

September 29th, 2012
2:46 pm

Texas A&M 30, Arkansas 10 half way through the 3rd quarter….with Wilson playing QB for the Hogs. I told you A&M was good….and that Florida has played a very good team. The Vols are better than most of you think….as well. Just not deep enough to beat Georgia. If Georgia turns the ball over several time, the Vols could give the Dawgs a tough time. If not, Georgia wins by 15 to 20.

Jeff Schultz

September 29th, 2012
2:46 pm

Sorry folks, there was a picture of Alec Olgetree and not Bacarri Rambo posted above. Change made. FYI, both are uniform on field.

Joey

September 29th, 2012
2:47 pm

One day, if we are lucky (sarcasm), JSS will tell us which of the Great American ADULT sports he likes – you know, the ones that ADULTS watch, because ADULTS shouldn’t watch collegiate sports, apparently.

As simpletons all, we, however, can always count on the brilliant JSS to tell us just how “pre-pubescent we actually are.

Thanks great-grandpa.

We promise to strive to be as old and wise (and jaded?) as you, one day . . .

Swami SEZ

September 29th, 2012
2:50 pm

UGA begins its two game losing streak starting today……

ARdawg

September 29th, 2012
2:51 pm

Jeff, just for clarification, are they wearing pads?

Tampa Gator

September 29th, 2012
2:55 pm

Does Georgia play A&M at home….or at College Station? If Georgia goes out there, that will be a very tough challenge for the Dawgs. Now……37 to 10 in favor of A&M.

dawggirl

September 29th, 2012
2:56 pm

Wow, Arkansas is really really bad.

Tampa Gator

September 29th, 2012
2:56 pm

Make that A&M 44 to 10 over Arkansas.

Go Vols

September 29th, 2012
2:56 pm

Been a Vols fan, will always be a Vols fan. But, realistically, think we will get killed today.

dawggirl

September 29th, 2012
2:56 pm

Tampa Gator, we don’t play them.

Tampa Gator

September 29th, 2012
2:57 pm

Dawggirl….

And…..A&M is very good.

ARdawg

September 29th, 2012
2:59 pm

Welcome Go Vols! And a hearty good luck to your guys

Jeff Schultz

September 29th, 2012
2:59 pm

ARdawg — Pads, jerseys, pants, cleats, helmets — everything. They’re playing.

Bg

September 29th, 2012
2:59 pm

Jeff!!!!!!!!

Go Vols

September 29th, 2012
3:00 pm

As long as JS plays up the Vols into more than they are this year, it will appear as though the dawgs will win an important game. They don’t play anybody good. Don’t know how they avoid it, but they always do.

ARdawg

September 29th, 2012
3:00 pm

Time for a game cocktail

Tampa Gator

September 29th, 2012
3:00 pm

Sorry…..I forgot….Georgia does not play A&M…….or Bama……or LSU……or…….

ARdawg

September 29th, 2012
3:01 pm

Jeff,
Schweet!!!

Tampa Gator

September 29th, 2012
3:01 pm

…….but the Dawgs will play Florida and South Carolina.

Go Vols

September 29th, 2012
3:01 pm

Thank you ARdawg. It is appreciated. And heaven help em, they are gonna need it.

Jeff Schultz

September 29th, 2012
3:02 pm

Texas A&M 44, Arkansas 10 in 3rd quarter. Can’t wait for John L. Smith’s words of wisdom this week.

dawggirl

September 29th, 2012
3:03 pm

Not our fault we had to drop Bama for Mizzou.

Tampa Gator

September 29th, 2012
3:04 pm

……if might take 5 or more years for Arkansas to recover from Patrino and his lack of morality, honesty, and pure decency. Shame on any team that hires that man to coach again.

Jeauxseph

September 29th, 2012
3:04 pm

Spencer Tillman, who exactly is “Urrand Murray”????

Jockich Ahn Smelley II

September 29th, 2012
3:05 pm

After the first 4 weeks, I was wondering if UGA was in the SunBelt Conference….powderpuff SCHEDULE!!! Buffalo, FAU, Mizzou, and Vandy….Hey but now the GIRLFRIEND ABUSER is back in the lineup and two more THUGS (RAMBO and Ogletree)….Is this a RERUN of the LONGEST YARD MOVIE????????

Jeauxseph

September 29th, 2012
3:05 pm

@Jeff Shultz, if I were you in that post game press conference at Arkie, I would……smile

John L. Smith

September 29th, 2012
3:05 pm

Smile!…. keep your chin up even though the dawgs will lose today…. smile!

Tampa Gator

September 29th, 2012
3:06 pm

Jeff……..

SMILE…….SMILE…….SMILE……SMILE…..SMILE….!!!! NO….OOOOOO……..JUMP OFF A MOUNTAIN……MAKE THAT MT. EVEREST…….JUMP….JUMP……JUMP…….AND SMILE WHILE YOU JUMP!!!!!

Lil Wayne

September 29th, 2012
3:07 pm

Hey Jockich Ahn Smelley, I’m sure you’re a GT fan…how’s that game vs. MTSU going?

Joey

September 29th, 2012
3:08 pm

Tampa Gator, as it stands right now, who do you pick in the SC vs UGA game next week?

I-DOG

September 29th, 2012
3:08 pm

if we run the ball with our tailbacks 40 times and operate from under center for at least half the game as opposed to the shotgun, we should win convincingly (of course we need take care of the ball and not turn it over as well). If we think throw first and are about 50-50 run pass play selection it will be a very close game

Go Vols

September 29th, 2012
3:08 pm

How can you think the dawgs can lose today John L? I hope you are correct, but I am not betting the farm on it.