Georgia has a 3-1 record after four games against BCS opponents, two of them on the road, and yet the bulk of the discussion among sports columnists and fans alike is what’s wrong with the Dogs. Three turnovers per game. Not much of a running attack. Inconsistent defense. Spotty special teams play. Too many penalties.
Heck, some folks even get outraged that the Dogs like to dance during TV timeouts!
But Mark Richt isn’t alone in hearing fan flak amid success. Les Miles can relate.
Despite an undefeated record and lofty national ranking, LSU fans aren’t happy about the narrow victory over Mississippi State and the fact that the Tigers have underperformed in a number of areas, including having the 105th ranked offense in the country.
The Shreveport Times’ Bayou Bengals Blog summed up LSU’s situation like this: “Their fan base may be the most displeased in the history of the game as far as a No. 4-ranked, undefeated team is concerned.”
And the Baton Rouge Advocate’s Gary Laney said: “Of the 17 unbeaten teams, LSU probably ranks dead last in fan-base morale.”
Laney notes that, “In a week after LSU’s 30-26 Southeastern Conference win at Mississippi State, I’ve flipped on the radio to hear a talk radio listener call for the job of offensive coordinator Gary Crowton … I’ve called up a message board to see somebody else begging Les Miles, who just improved to 46-11 as the Tigers coach, to find a different job at season’s end. And the e-mails … let’s not even go there.”
Even the optimistic among the Tiger faithful, like this And the Valley Shook blogger, acknowledge the dissension: “I think that things still aren’t as dismal as the rest of LSU Nation tends to believe. We won, for crying out loud. But then again, we won ugly again.”
What it comes down to is that’s just life among the SEC elite: Both LSU and Georgia have the kind of programs where it’s not just enough to win any more. They’re expected to look good doing it. Up to this point, neither team has done that consistently.
After Saturday, one fan base will have even more to wail about.
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