Two ways of viewing UGA’s win over Vandy

Dogs celebrate in Nashville. (Frederick Breedon IV / Special)

Dogs celebrate in Nashville. (Frederick Breedon IV / Special)

I’m not sure I buy the comparisons between this Georgia team’s situation and the 2007 team, which used a win over Vandy as a springboard to beat Florida and run the table, or the 2006 team, which rose out of the Richt era’s previous low point to finish strong with three wins over ranked teams. After all, Matthew Stafford was the quarterback of those teams, and he had help from names like Kregg Lumpkin and Knowshon Moreno.

Joe Cox is no Matthew Stafford, even on his best day. And while Georgia always has a chance as long as A.J. Green is on the field, the rest of the supporting cast of characters still has a lot of developing to do.

But college football is a screwy game, so you never know. While there was no jumping up and down at midfield, the Dogs reportedly emerged from the Vandy win pumped and elated. And this year’s Florida team doesn’t look invincible. I mean, the Gators barely beat an Arkansas defense that Georgia repeatedly torched earlier this season.

It’s one of those heart and head things.

My head says this win was only over Vandy, and it took the Dogs quite a while to get rolling against the Commodores, so there’s not much reason to think the Florida game is going to be anything but the predicted slaughter. However, my heart can’t help harking back to other turnarounds and upsets UGA teams have pulled in the past, defying the odds. And, hey, we have a bye week before Jacksonville and they don’t.

Don’t get your hopes up, my head says.

But my heart says, it could happen. It really could.

POOCH KICKS

Other thoughts and questions arising from Georgia’s much needed win over Vanderbilt. …

In the passing game, Cox didn’t have a great day against Vandy, particularly in the first half, but he wasn’t helped by at least four balls dropped by Georgia receivers. You could tell Branden Smith heard footsteps and flinched on that screen pass he dropped early on. …

Green only caught three passes Saturday, but he showed a new dimension of his prodigious talent with that shifty run for 65 yards and a touchdown out of a screen pass. As Mark Richt noted after the game, good things happen for the Dogs when they manage to get the ball into A.J.’s hands. …

Orson Charles made a great catch in traffic inside the 10-yard line. I still think he’s going to have a big day at some point this season. …

It took three quarters for Georgia’s ground game to get going against the Commodores’ rushing defense, the one aspect of their defensive game that’s pretty suspect. Only 27 yards rushing in the first half? And the toss sweep continues to work poorly for the Dogs because of penetration allowed by the offensive line.

But there were hopeful flashes Saturday. Surprise starter Washaun Ealey had a really nice 33-yarder and averaged 5.5 yards per run, and while Caleb King didn’t get a lot of yardage on his handful of runs, he bolstered the pass protection and scored two touchdowns, including a nifty run to paydirt on a screen pass. …

I don’t think it was just coincidence that the Dogs were more effective on the ground when they had two tight ends and a fullback bolstering the spotty blocking of the offensive line. …

Perhaps one of the reasons the end-around to Smith keeps getting stuffed is that it’s so predictable when he enters the game. A fake out of that might catch someone off-guard down the road. …

The move out of the box and down to the sideline was probably one of Mike Bobo’s best calls of the season. Too often in the past, his playcalling has looked as if he was out of touch with what was happening on the field. That’s not as likely to happen with him talking face to face with his players. …

Overall, the special teams had their best day of the season. Prince Miller made some really nice moves on his punt returns of 55 and 40 yards; if he had any speed at all, at least one, if not both, of those could have been touchdowns. Drew Butler did a fine job punting, especially into the stiff wind, and Blair Walsh continued to be reliable. Kelin Johnson and A.J. Bryant noted on the “Fifth Quarter Show” that they saw more starters on the kickoff coverage team, and the results were pretty good.

On the debit side, that attempted punt return by Logan Gray was ugly and the block-in-the-back penalty on that play put the Dogs in a hole. And is there any SEC team more susceptible to the fake punt that the Dogs? …

Also, when Georgia got a second chance at a field goal in the first half after a Vandy defender was flagged for jumping over the line to block the first try, that gave the Dogs a first down with 11 seconds on the clock. It seemed like a good opportunity to take another shot at the end zone and still have time for a field goal attempt, but instead they just kicked again. Not very aggressive. …

What with the empty seats and folks who didn’t wear black, Vandy’s attempt at a “blackout” ended up looking more like a “grayout.” …

The inconsistency of officiating in the SEC is getting ludicrous. Rantavious Wooten was rightly flagged for spiking the ball after a big catch, but when a Vandy player sacked Cox and then threw his towel in the air in celebration, there was no flag.

And then there’s the fact that Florida and Alabama seem immune to such calls. Tim Tebow gets away with constant showboating with no flags, and likewise Bama’s defense against South Carolina Saturday night. …

Finally, for those of you who like to imbibe, here’s a new drinking game you might try. Tune in to “Dog Talk” after the game and take a drink every time Jeff Dantzler refers to cohost David Greene as “the lefthander.” By the end of the show, you’ll probably be unable to walk.

213 comments Add your comment

bjfussell

October 18th, 2009
12:46 pm

bjfussell

October 18th, 2009
12:49 pm

if brandon spikes is out maybe the dawgs can have some success. Who is florida playing next week?

PeligroPero

October 18th, 2009
1:01 pm

Its great to chalk up a win, but like you said, it was Vandy. Some bright spots but still areas of concern. Cox still locks on to one receiver and often throws into coverage. Special teams are not so good, Vandy’s just worse. Florida looked beatable – without the bogus “personal foul” on Arky at the end, UF may not have had a shot at that field goal. We can beat Fla. but it will have to the best effort of the year.

bjfussell

October 18th, 2009
1:04 pm

i think mike slive has made it illegal for the refs to let florida or alabama lose.

Dawg '85

October 18th, 2009
1:07 pm

We have some great young talent in the secondary. Boykin looked good in coverage and Rambo needs to get the minutes over Evans. If I never see Bryan Evans on the field again it will be too soon!

MATHDAWG

October 18th, 2009
1:14 pm

SEC officials will not allow UF or AL to lose until they play each other. They kept UGA from beating LSU and Ark from beating UF. I hate to say it, but college football is becoming more like the WWE wrestling show. These guys arene’t just bad, they are taking sides to make the conference look better. I also think some of the celebration penalties agaist UGA stem from the fack that V. Dooley is the one responsibile for this rule and they call is on UGA just to get back at him. Most of them don’t like the rule and are using it against UGA to make a point. This rule should be done away with and a taunting rule could replace it. It’s always OK for Tebow to celebrate and for U. Myer to be 20 yards out on the field. Is that a reward for being ranked #1?

benadawg

October 18th, 2009
1:14 pm

Maybe the refs are in love with Tebow as much as ESPN is…I wish the challenge of beating the Gators meant as much to this team as it does to its fans, we were there in huge numbers yesterday, We love our team. Go Dogs!!!!!

Cuz

October 18th, 2009
1:14 pm

This could be the best drinking game since “Hi Bob”. You watch the thirty minute Newhart show, it does not matter which one. Anytime anyone says Hi Bob you take a drink. Thirty minutes you need help to get to your bed.

Cuz

October 18th, 2009
1:16 pm

The heart says the Dawgs can win any game they suit up to play. I have seen way too many games with W’s we were supposed to lose. On any Saturday, ask THE ohio state university.

The Ghost Of Wally Butss

October 18th, 2009
1:33 pm

Forgive me if I offend, but a win against the Commodores is kind of like waking up and still having a pulse – it’s nice, but it’s what you expected, and no particular cause to think you are any different than you were before the event.

I will still pass on drinking the post-Vandy win kool-aid offered up by the 2009 Sideline Dancing-Could Care Less What Fans Who Haven’t Play A Single Down Think-Blame The Refs UGA Team of “playas”.

I have my arms folded waiting to see what happens in Jax, thank you very much. Then we’ll see whether this team has found discipline or not.

Frank Lane

October 18th, 2009
1:34 pm

I think we have a definite chance in Jacksonville, maybe the best in years. Florida cannot help but take us lightly. And we might even win the turnover battle there.

Frank

Supes

October 18th, 2009
1:39 pm

There is no question that UGA has had to endure some “bad calls” and “none calls” ever since the “Celebration Penalty” 2 years ago against FLA.

We’ll probably continue to “pay for it”.

I hope it was “worth it”, CMR.

UGA student

October 18th, 2009
1:54 pm

“Forgive me if I offend, but a win against the Commodores is kind of like waking up and still having a pulse – it’s nice, but it’s what you expected, and no particular cause to think you are any different than you were before the event.”

Sorry, but the fact that we beat Vandy like we were supposed to (and actually, we beat them better than anyone has all year and beat the spread in doing so) IS reason to believe we’re better than we were. This team hasn’t beaten teams like they should have this year, resulting in an average margin of victory for our first three wins of 6 points. This Georgia team for several years now has struggled to beat inferior opponents. This is our best win against Vandy since 2005 and that gives me hope that this team and coaching staff are improving.

jhebogie

October 18th, 2009
2:15 pm

IT WAS VANDERBILT. 2 AND 5. Need to quit patting ourselves on the back and see it for what it was a average performance against a realy bad team.

[...] Bill King on the Dawgs Vanderbilt win & chances in Jacksonville [...]

MtnDawg

October 18th, 2009
2:37 pm

Bill, thanks for someone finally pointing out the toss sweep doesn’t work! It’s not just our execution, though–it’s a terrible play in general the way we run it! We saw it work a little bit whenever we ran it with two tight ends, like you said. I suspect it might also work out of a spread formation really well. If Bobo ever calls a toss sweep again, I hope it is out of the spread or not at all. NO MORE TOSS SWEEPS FROM I-FORMATION!! STRONG I, WEAK I, EITHER WAY IT IS TERRIBLE!! Not even Knowshon could consistently get any yards from it.

Navigator

October 18th, 2009
2:46 pm

Let’s face it, they have Florida and Tech as the only real challenges, and I think they will win one of those games. Since I’m also a Tech fan, I hope it’s Florida.

Cuz

October 18th, 2009
2:48 pm

I have the results for my first weekly Defensive Coordinator Fantasy League. I made it simple as possible, I have other responsibilities in life. I used Will Muschamp, Kirby Smart, Bud Foster and the fan favorite Willie Martinez. I would have included Chavis but he was unavailable as LSU did not play.

Five categories. Each gets ranked first through fourth. As in golf, the lower your total score wins. Ties as in golf are counted together then on to the next number. In one category there was one first and three seconds. I have not factored in strength of schedule yet, I need to figure a formula for that. Maybe later when I have a beer or several it will come to me.

This week the first through fourth is as follows.
Smart first place with an impressive 7 points. Played USCe
Coach Willie second with 12 points. It was Vandy.
Muschamp third with 13 points. Played U of not so OK
Foster fourth with 15 points. Played the Bugs, lost.

If you have a DC you would like to add for next week, let me know and I in my infinite wisdom as Commissioner of my league, will decide whether to add them. Strong, no way he is going to leave UF for UGA. Monte is not going to abandon his son. I am not convinced any of the others would either, but hey you gotta have someone for Willie to run against. Difficult to add an HC to the mix unless you count his DC.

Tune in next week for another thrilling contest.

Now back to our regularly scheduled pi$$ and moan session.

Objective Opinion-ator

October 18th, 2009
2:55 pm

“Supposed” to beat Vandy.

UGA is not a member of the elite. Never have been.

Better than average, maybe

Prime example? The statue erected of Dooley. Mr mediocrity himself. 1 MNC in 25 years. 6 SEC championships in 25 years. .700+ winning percentage in 25 years.

Other examples? Goff & Donnan

Still want more? Richt wins SEC titles in years in which Bama & UF are down. Haven’t been close since.

Even more? Getting beat by Vandy at Homecoming, 2006. Getting beat by Kentucky at their Homecoming, same year.

Reel off some SEC championships. Make some runs & even win an MNC.

Then you can feel like you’re “supposed” to be a lesser opponent.

Just keeping it real & in perspective

SOUTHGADAWG88

October 18th, 2009
3:10 pm

Bama has only come close to winning a SEC title once since Richt has been at UGA and that was last year.Bama has not won anything yet.

Whopper Dawg

October 18th, 2009
3:11 pm

A W, I’ll take it. But if you think we are talking turn around here, you are going to be vastly disappointed. Vandy, if not the worst, is certainly in the bottom 3 of the SEC, with absolutely the worst offense in the SEC. If Vandy had any type of passing attach, that game would have been vastly different.

We may get to six wins, but that will be about it. My fear is that, if we do luck up and trip Tech for example, and win a lessor bowl game, RIcht will make a case to keep the staff.

SOUTHGADAWG88

October 18th, 2009
3:12 pm

For some reason I think the refs are going to make a couple of calls in our favor in JAX.Meyer will be complaining about it after the game.

dawgtrey

October 18th, 2009
3:20 pm

I always get excited after UGA wins no matter who the opponent is. I can’t imagine anyone saying otherwise. You don’t have to tear down a goal post over this win, but just because Vandy is a non-quality opponent, there is no shame to say you are happy and excited that UGA won.

But to assume that “just because” we beat Vandy that we’ll beat FL, or “just because” a former UGA team did “this” or “that”, is making an unrealistic leap. Reason is because of two things: CWM and CMB

bjfussell

October 18th, 2009
3:22 pm

bama hasnt won crap this decade. has everybody forgot the sugar bowl??

"The" Dawg fan!

October 18th, 2009
3:33 pm

Frank obviously has no clue. We don’t have a chance as long as Martinez is DC. Why does he keep playing Evans? Rambo is so much better…Rambo is always near the ball. Christian Robinson also looked good. D Jackson looks like he has potential…they need to move Samuel to LB. When will Martinez realize the corners need to play tight on the line…make the receivers work to get open. lets hope we take advantage of the extra week to make some changes

David G.

October 18th, 2009
3:40 pm

roll tide roll

Raleigh

October 18th, 2009
3:40 pm

DAWGS WIN! Typical reaction of DAs on this board:

- Vandy sucks
- Martinez sucks
- The playcalling/Bobo sucks
- Florida is going to kill us
- UGA might win two more games

(Most of) you guys kill me. Sports are entertainment! The idea is to enjoy the victories. Do you really think anyone cares what you predict will happen next week, at the end of the year or next season? Do you really think that your armchair quarterbacking is that insightful? Do you really think that saying you know what was going to happen AFTER a play makes you smarter than someone who has to predict what might work BEFORE a play?

Raise your hand if you were ready to email Damon Evans when Bobo called a running play to Carlton Thomas on 4th and 5. And let’s hear some more complaining about “not getting it to our playmakers downfield” – our biggest play of the day was a short pass to AJ Green who did the rest.

I have a great idea. Let’s petition the NCAA to force all of UGA’s opponents to run the same defensive scheme on every down. While we’re at it, let’s make their players stand still. Then we can fire Bobo and you geniuses could take over. Maybe you’d be able to call a play that gets a first down.

SickandTired

October 18th, 2009
4:03 pm

The Gators are comin’ for ya Marky. Two weeks to think about it. Two weeks to try and get that pitiful defense ready for a hosing by Tebow. Two weeks to dread the embarrassment. Two weeks for the drunken Dawg Nation to get the cars and rv’s packed to head down to Jacksonville for their annual bending over the fence and taking a thrashing. Two weeks for the unranked and unfeared Georgia Bulldogs to wallow in the mud puddle they’ve created for themselves. High expectation, stunning arrogance and utter futility with their team, their coaches and the state of affairs that is Georgia Football. Enjoy the off week boys and oh by the way, check the lastest rankings and see who the best team and best coach is in the state of Georgia.
Georgia: The Wisconsin of the SEC.

Denver Dog

October 18th, 2009
4:11 pm

Math Dog, glad to see someone else notices that Urban on the field deal. I’ve been complaining about it for four years now. Celebartion stuff is out of control in the SEC. Wooten, maybe a penalty, maybe not, but throwing the towel in the air should’ve been too!

Mr Objective, does that mean that Alabama won in years which UGA was down. Well then that was 91 and I know we were bad then. I guess for Florida it means that they were donw for about 60 years. Get real. UGA is good. Not great this year but good. They beat the team (ArK) that pushed UF to the end only to lose on some hokey SEC officiating calls. We beat the team that gave Bama all they wanted, and they were playing without the star running back. I really don’t care what you fair weather friends, and Jacket supporter on here think, Cuz, put that guy from TCU on the list too!

Now for reality, we played our first semi-weak team this weekend, and we don’t have a tough game next weekend. Maybe some time to heal and scheme. I don’t know if we can beat UF or not right now, but we sure can give it a shot. I don’t know if we can beat anyone else on the schedule right now, but I believe that we can and will show some domination throughout the rest of the year. Most of the big pickers said UGA would lose at least 4 this year, I thought 2, right now it might be 5, or it might be 3. GO DOGS, we may not win, but we are never losers.

razor

October 18th, 2009
4:15 pm

……*JOSH NESBITT FOR HEISMAN*……

Denver Dog

October 18th, 2009
4:17 pm

Sick and tired, you must be brain dead. Randy Shannon is on your tail buddy and you are scared to play against his team. You guys really showed alot against Arkansas. Must have been holding back not to show any of your complex offense. Did you like those two calls against Ark that kept your drive going.

CPJ is a good coach, and he is getting his just respect. However, the year is not over yet, he still has to play Duke, Wake, UVA, Vandy, and UGA. If his teams hold true to form they will slip up on one of those easy ones. University of Florida, the SMU of the South East, death penalty is coming boys,

frankly

October 18th, 2009
4:21 pm

Frank Beamer and Bobby Bowden both said ” We coud’nt stop that GT offense.”

GatorGreg

October 18th, 2009
4:21 pm

With the season UGAg is having, beating Vandy is like kissing your sister. Well we are talking UGAg so I guess that is a good thing….

Charleston Southern

October 18th, 2009
4:25 pm

The Gators barely squeaked by the Hogs.

randy

October 18th, 2009
4:28 pm

razor, how about putting a diaper on Nesbitt!

BobDawg

October 18th, 2009
4:29 pm

Bill, thanks for noticing that the gator “Annointed One” is allowed to jump up and down, wave his arms, strike a pose and motion repeatedly to the crowd (which is by the LETTER OF THE RULE) a violation of the celebration penalty every time something even minor goes well for the gators, as if he is wrestling for the WWE championship while a simple spike of the football or a glance to the crowd brings a flag for UGA. The hypocrisy makes me want to vomit.

I know it sounds like sour grapes, but its really not. UGA did not deserve to win the LSU game no more than they deserved to win their other two losses. I would just like to see the rule applied fairly. Is that asking too much?

ATLshirt.com

October 18th, 2009
4:29 pm

I can not wait to put a pounding on those nerds from the trade school!!

Cuz

October 18th, 2009
4:37 pm

Denver Dog, if you add Bumpas of TCU in the DC fantasy league he comes in second with 11 points. Smart still retains first with an added point and eight for his total. I did not reshuffle the rest but they should remain in the same order after Bumpas. They played Colorado State for strength of schedule. His numbers were great except for zero interceptions by his team.

Cuz

October 18th, 2009
4:41 pm

A win is a win in the SEC, the toughest conference in the nation.
Urban Meyer speaking to a reporter after asked the question how he felt about barely beating Arkansas.

Ringleader

October 18th, 2009
4:59 pm

Bill King……..Did you go to the game? There was no wind on the field. There was a breeze out of the west, which the stadium shielded from the field. The flags on the goal posts barely quivered. You must have been listening to that WSB radio crowd who were completly disconnected from the game with their calls.

The Real SugarHillDawg

October 18th, 2009
5:01 pm

When Vandy faked that punt, I saw ALL the UGA players bailing out and not even seeing if the punter was going to kick it. Man,you learn that in rec league!!!!!!

Einsteindawg

October 18th, 2009
5:02 pm

Thanks UGA, for the win against Vandy. Maybe this will get our “underachieving” and “uncoached” scholar athletes and coaches fired up for UF. I believe we have the talent to beat the Gators, but will need some help from Mike Sleeze and the SEC. We can win only if the officiating crew is from the ACC, Big 12, or anyplace other than SEC. The fix is so obvious, even the broadcast teams are noticing. Peace.

Class of '98

October 18th, 2009
5:05 pm

I would love to know what the coaching staff discussed with the players during the timeout before the fake punt.

What blocking schemes to use on the return? Where to eat supper? Whether or not the balloon boy thing was a hoax?

Your guess is as good as mine.

FlaDawg

October 18th, 2009
5:09 pm

no question on the florida game…Arkansas was robbed by 2 horrible 15 yard penalty calls on the last florida drive that allowed florida to take the lead. It is very, very, very, very obvious that Florida is not to lose this season and the refs will make sure of it. Mike Slive will make sure no calls go georiga’s way in the fla game.

Herschel Talker

October 18th, 2009
5:16 pm

No chance against the Gaytors. Sorry, but just keeping it real here. If you guys think that thumping a pathetic Vandy team all of sudden means that the Bobo, Fabris, Martinez, and Richt show isn’t going to make an appearance in Jacksonville, then you’re all on crack. This is a fairly talented team that is extremely poorly coached. UF is a very talented team that is very well coached. You figure how that one is going to turn out.

Eric

October 18th, 2009
5:31 pm

Amen to the SEC “officiating”. In my (vadka impaired) mind, the focus should not be on Florida. How in the heck are we going to get a ‘W’ against GT? GT is for real so UGA had best start trying to defend their offense right now. UGA has already lost any hopes of contending for the SECCG so the best bet would be to get the title for the state of Georgia at this point. Can I get an amen on that?

UGADawg83

October 18th, 2009
5:34 pm

Here’s the deal–Yesterday we didn’t make the mistakes we made in our three losses. The penalties were fewer. There were fewer missed assignments on defense and we were able to muster a little bit of a running game. Even a team as poor as Vandy will beat us with the effort we had in Knoxville. With an off-week of hard work there is a drop or two of hope as we head down to Jacksonville.

Todd

October 18th, 2009
5:35 pm

Just because we leave Nashville with a win, still doesn’t prove very much. Offensively, I don’t think we blocked consistently well with respect to the running game. The running-game by committee is getting old. Allow Ealey to get in and stay in. Running backs need to gain a rythm but can’t with the in/out with our offense. The only receiver we can count on is AJ. No other receiver is reliable. I shutter to think where we would be w/o AJ. Defensively, they played ok…but then again..it was Vandy. This team is average at best. I fully expect us to get blown out versus Florida. From that point on, Logan needs to play quarterback. Get him ready for next year and keep the red-shirt on Murray and Mett.
I appreciate Joe and him being the complete team-player. But the time has come to prepare for next year. Start by bringing in Bumpus to be DC.
Bobo needs to open up the playbook next year and have more than 5 plays.
The offensive line has got to improve. There is no excuse, with the experience that we have up-front, to have the paltry running game that we do.

Eric

October 18th, 2009
5:39 pm

UGADawg83, there is no hope for the game down in JAX and you know it! UF will drill UGA (SEC referees will make sure of it in case it’s close) once again. I am so glad that I no longer spend my money for that trip! UGA wil go 7 – 5 at best this year. If we get rid of CWM then we can hope for 9 – 3 next year.

The Thin Guy

October 18th, 2009
5:44 pm

Wow! Coach Richie Rich and his UGay Pooches whipped up on the best team in all of Nashville, Tenn. The Vanderbilt Commodes. Now for the big win over Tennis Shoe Tech. And can we replace Auburn with Agnes Scott and Georgia Tech with Defries Tech? Florida? Are you kidding? Munson will croak at halftime. Woof! Woof! Woof1