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

Bob Horner stayed hury

October 18th, 2009
5:52 pm

you people saying the refs won’t let Gergia win scare me…….Are you saying the SEC benefits from Florida and Alabama being undefeated…LOL..

I refuse to stomach that….if I am wrong than I guess greed is ACTALLY evil…Gordon Gecko was wrong…he thought it was good….

personally I think Florida beats us pretty good in 2 weeks..BUT..I’ll still pull like hellll for the dawgs….

We got out coached SOOOOO bad against Tennessee….that was not an abberation…that was real…..I saw it with my own eyes….

savannah dawg

October 18th, 2009
5:54 pm

I love the DAWGS as much as anybody, but Eric is right, the DAWGS will lose against florida and it will probably be ugly, but they’re our DAWGS and I love em. We’ll start a winning streak next year and dominate the next decade. GO DAWGS!!!!

Shananeeeeeee Fananeeeeeeeeeee

October 18th, 2009
6:00 pm

I have said it all year if you believe me or not, Florida’s defense is going to get them to the SEC Championship Game and after yesterday’s scare most likely undefeated. Here is a prediction for you and I believe it, the Gator defense will not give up more than 20 points for the rest of the regular season. They have yet to give up more than 20 and have only given up 4 Touchdowns and 52 points in six games. With that said the Dawgs defense will have to shut the Gator offense down to a low number. I don’t see that happening. You can’t compare the Florida-Arkansas game with the Georgia-Arkansas game you just can’t. I believe yesterday was Florida’s Mississippi State game from last year but they got the W this time. That game is going to wake them up a little bit and everybody knows there will be a lot more motivation for the Georgia – Florida game. We will see what happens but the Dawg defense is going to have to show up, play their best game all year, and keep the Gators out of the endzone.

TEBLOW

October 18th, 2009
6:04 pm

It is obvious that if you are a bible thumper and go around snipping little boys “you know whats” you can get away with taunting and celebration penalties. Go figure. Typical. Anyway, UF will be in the cellar when teblow leaves.

Herschel Talker

October 18th, 2009
6:04 pm

Shananeeeeeee Fananeeeeeeeeeeeeeee @ 6:00:

“We will see what happens but the Dawg defense is going to have to show up, play their best game all year, and keep the Gators out of the endzone.”

The chances of Willie Martinez and Brian Evans keeping the Gaytors out of the endzone are lower than the chances of me getting Willie’s job after this year.

techredneck

October 18th, 2009
6:06 pm

Raleigh, I could not have put it any better. It amazes me how some fans have all the answers. “WE don’t have good playcalling”, ” The refs. stole that game”. ” The D-coach didn’t make any adjustments”. ” Any fool could figure out our offensive scheme”. Its so funny to read these blogs. But thats what makes up college ball. I admit I don’t know any answers. If your team gets beat, the other guy was BETTER om that day.Thats why they play the game, TO SEE WHOS BETTER. PERIOD!

45ACP

October 18th, 2009
6:07 pm

I expect a win every time the Dawgs play.
Two weeks to scheme and prepare.
I will remain optimistic.
It’s not a matter of life and death.
It’s more important than that!

Bob Horner stayed hury

October 18th, 2009
6:07 pm

TEBLOW..why are you still a virgin..??? and why would you tell the press.. I so happy when I lost my virginity..!!!!! 11th grade

What are you…NUTS!!!???

Grandad

October 18th, 2009
6:10 pm

Agreed…Tebow, albeit a good kid, ESPN and ref’s etc. make you want to pull against him. Fla. and Teb., and col. football in gen. has become much like the NBA. If the powers that be (TV, nike, whomever) decide someone is their darling then they becomes next to impossible to defeat. “Cuz”, Bumpas would be a great fit here. Older(mature) on a young staff, 2008 F. Broyles finalist, Also def. line coach – 4 players on TCU d-line All Mtn. West, has coached in SEC (Tn.). Finally; do not discount a win over Vandy. We are always championing the SEC and last time I checked, they are still a full fledged member of the SEC. Not to mention going into the game were they not ranked # 20 nationally on def. Just sayin’.

Grandad

October 18th, 2009
6:14 pm

Thin Guy: I think the Titans are still a little bit better.

dawgster

October 18th, 2009
6:15 pm

I’ve been saying all along that Tebow and company are not going to get the celebration penalty called on them like other teams, and i don’t neccessary have a problem with how Tebow gets excited and brings attention to himself, lets not take the emotion out of the game, but come SEC officials, treat everyone the same, it was quite obvious that they were not going to let the gators lose on as a result of the calls or non-calls against Ark….As far as if the dawgs can be the gators in Jax,
yes they can, will they?, probably not, i just hope they make a game out of it and show the dawg nation they can compete with the gators and build on something for next season…

Who Cares?

October 18th, 2009
6:17 pm

Beating Vandy is like coming in first at the special olympics. You’re still retarded.

It’s gonna get ugly in Jacksonville.

Dawg '85

October 18th, 2009
6:20 pm

Ya gotta love Eric… u know you’re vodka impaired when you say “vadka impaired”!

DawgGirl32

October 18th, 2009
6:20 pm

So Vandy sucks but we’ve played some very, very bad Vandy teams very closely the past few years with better teams. This is also a Vandy defense that was allowing only 17 points a game (I think) and we doubled that. Say what you will but this was a solid win in my book.

Frogger

October 18th, 2009
6:24 pm

If the Georgia/Florida game is close we can depend on CBS and the SEC refs to pull it out for Tebow and company.

Ch

October 18th, 2009
6:26 pm

score prediction. FL45 GA13. it is pretty much gonna be complete replay of the tn game. i say we have a chance if we dont do anything stupid and if our defense can get to tebow. rennie curran needs to be on tebow all game. its not like our secondary isnt fast enough to keep up with fl wide recievers. boykin. smith. come one those are some of the quickest guys in the ncaa right now. we need to bench cox and play murray and run a f style offense with gray. i hope we can pull it out against fl but its very doubtful the way we are playing.

go dawgs!

Scott

October 18th, 2009
6:29 pm

About Prince Miller, Bill? Your quote “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.”
You have no clue what you are writing about. “if he had any speed at all” Really, Bill. Do you watch the games? Prince Miller is slow? Unbelievable!

Eric

October 18th, 2009
6:30 pm

Dawg ‘85, I have plenty of vadka left. Come on over and I’ll give you a shoot (should be ’shot’ but who cares?). Did I get a good grade on my spelling?

Eric

October 18th, 2009
6:33 pm

Ch, CWM doesn’t know that rushing the passer is legal in the NCAA. UF wins by at least 30 points!!

Dawg '85

October 18th, 2009
6:36 pm

The SEC officiating has become very suspect… gone the way of the NBA since Magic’s days… and the NFL… 2 straight weeks Brady turns his head to the ref, after negligible contact, and then the ref thros flag. EXACT same thing happened to Arky… Arky kid in great position, turns his head to the ball, negligible contact… incomplete pass. Then FLreceiver makes throw the flag motion and monkey in stripes does just that. What should be outlawed is influencing refs and taunting… NOT celebrations. SEC officiating headquarters obviously has an URBAN address… like in his pants.

Bill King

October 18th, 2009
6:37 pm

I’m with the folks who say they have no problem with kids celebrating, gesturing or calling attention to themselves. Emotion is a big part of college football. Those displays are against the rules, but it’s a dumb rule. Heck, I don’t even have a problem with taunting, as unpleasant as it can be sometimes. I wish the rule would go away. But as long as it’s in place, they either need to call it on everyone or not call it at all. Just apply it consistently across the board. And that very plainly is not happening right now. There were gestures in both the Florida-Arkansas and Alabama-South Carolina games that were much more blatant than what Orson Charles did in the LSU game, but no flag. I don’t really think that there’s a conspiracy among the SEC refs to “get” Georgia. I’m not so sure, however, that there isn’t some sort of unspoken agenda to “protect” certain high-flying teams.

Ch

October 18th, 2009
6:37 pm

good point eric. i meant rennie to be more of a qb spy than a pass rusher

Allen

October 18th, 2009
6:38 pm

Bill, finally someone else noticed our repeated susceptibility to fake punts. How hard is it to anticipate this and prepare for it? Even worse, they always seem to come at the most obvious of times . . . this goes all the way back to the Sugar Bowl vs. West Virginia.

Ch

October 18th, 2009
6:41 pm

CWM is hurting our recruiting like no other also. if was a saftey and saw what CWM was doing to other safteys there is no way i would go

Dr M

October 18th, 2009
6:47 pm

The Ugly Force has a great D but their O has not been that impressive. With a great effort on defense and not turnovers, we could win this one. Let’s help the Dawgs believe they can do it and get off their cases until after the WBOCP….

Eric

October 18th, 2009
6:48 pm

Bill, there’s an agenda – rest assured. The zebras to this day cannot get over the UF end zone celebration. The zebras wear pink panties and I despise them. They’re slowly trying to change NCAA football into a flag football sport where no contact will be permitted. Heck, we might as well have that female dog Pelosi out there throwing the flags.

45ACP

October 18th, 2009
6:49 pm

The flag on AJ in the LSU game was a kick in the nut$.
Totally changed the emotion and momentum of the game.
The Ref’s admit they were wrong. Thanks, thanks a lot.

Cuz

October 18th, 2009
6:51 pm

Someone needs to check if the SEC Zebra’s have a football pool. Send in Clouseau.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhHwnrlZRus

T.Slay

October 18th, 2009
6:53 pm

I have to take issue with Objective Opinionator regarding Coach Dooley’s record. Dooley coached in a different era and comparing his time as coach (the 60s thru the 80s) and the period of the late 90s-2000s is like comparing apples to oranges. In the 1960s and early 70s (up to 1971) teams played only ten games a season (not counting bowl games). There were no conference championship games back then. So if a team went 8-2 or 9-1, that was considered a great season; a 7-3 season was considered very good. Teams did not start playing 11 games until the early 70s so if a team went 9-2, or 10-1, that was considered impressive. Earlier this decade teams started playing 12 games and if you count a possible berth in the SEC championship and a bowl game, that adds up to 14 games. So a 9 or 10 win season nowadays would not be as impressive as it would have been 30 years ago. You mention Coach Dooley winning 6 SEC championships in 25 seasons. That averages out to be one SEC championship every four years, which was pretty good considering that there was a certain coach named Paul “Bear” Bryant who was coaching at Alabama during much of that same period and who dominated the SEC during much of the 60s and 70s.

Barry Jay

October 18th, 2009
6:55 pm

I agree on the inconsistentcy in officiating. UGA is still paying the price for the endzone celebration in Jax. Sad, but true. It is shameful for the SEC to allow UF and Bama to get away with celebrations while calling it tightly on UGA. We need to start emailing the SEC now to make our complaints known. Maybe they will be more equitable during the game in Jax this year.

Cuz

October 18th, 2009
6:57 pm

Heck if I was a Hog fan I would be yelling foul all day. Flag Arky for a penalty. UF does it is okay. Net thirty yards in questionable penalties on the final drive. Sooner or later the peasants will grab their pitchforks and attack the problem. Hopefully they do better than they did in Shrek.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RDeAwsWFysw&feature=related

Macclenny_dawg

October 18th, 2009
6:58 pm

Great point on your is anybody more acceptable to the fake punt than Georgia!!!! This team is so predictable they always set up the punt return!!! We have good returners but when Gray is back there why don’t we try to block the punt!!! That part of our game has been missing 4 years!!! If you want this team to get a spark where do we usually get the spark? Special teams that is where!!! But we have to try to block a punt against Florida because there punter doesn’t ever get a return against him. Everybody has to fair catch it!!! Coaches all they have 2 do is look at that stat on Florida!!! If we can beat Florida we better play and coach every play to win like it is the last!! This coaching staff will have to be aggressive in every aspect of the game!!! Richt will have to give up calling a conservative game and GADA!!!!!!!!!

Frogger

October 18th, 2009
6:59 pm

Feel free to give ole Rogers Redding a call or fax. He’s the man in charge of the paid off refs.

Southeastern Conference
2201 Richard Arrington Blvd. North
Birmingham, AL 35203
(205) 458-3000
(205) 458-3031 – FAX

his extension is 3025

Tech could have strippers as ushers & still not sell out

October 18th, 2009
6:59 pm

Amen on the non-celebration calls against non-UGA teams. You could site 100 different examples of no-calls since that God awful LSU game. What about UT pulling a UGA endzone stomp going into the 4th quarter last weekend on the actual field? What about every other TD or sack made in any other game? They NEVER get called. That official in the UGA/LSU game should lose his job forever.

Let ‘em call Greene “The lefthander” all he wants!! I’d take Greene back at QB any day of any year!! He’s the REAL Greenie, unlike the tool on ESPN.

Cuz

October 18th, 2009
7:03 pm

If Tech had strippers as ushers I would definitely attend a game. No thanks on the hot dog, I already got one. I will take a coke for my bourbon and could I get a fifty changed to ones?

Dawg '85

October 18th, 2009
7:04 pm

Eric, I meant no malice… which, in drinking terms, means bad ice… I just poured a shot from ye ol’ vodka bottle in the freezer… here’s to you and the Dawgs… I’m just looking for tangible improvement through end of season.

There is hope for the future… our secondary will be VERY good going forward… next year Bryan Evans will be gone, our young studs Boykin, Rambo, Smith, et al. are VERY athletic. With a new DC… please hear our prayers Lord… we need some DL, another LB, and we will be solid.

I’m sticking by Bobo… I think he’s been hampered by inconsistent execution by the players. He called a good game against Vandy… Cox completed passes to at least 10 receivers… I think we’ll see some new wrinkles against FL… B. Smith, or L. Gray will be on field when something happens other what we all expect. As for the toss sweep… prob. need fewer reps… but if we block it’s effective… and Ealey and King are starting to hit holes.

45ACP

October 18th, 2009
7:04 pm

Cuz – that’s it. Emails, we don’t need no stinking emails to SEC officials.
Light the torches and grab the pitch forks. Let’s storm the Castle!

Eric

October 18th, 2009
7:04 pm

Barry Jay, the game in JAX has already been decided by the cross-dressing referees. Tebow can do no wrong; he has never, ever done any wrong. The pink panty clad gang will award the gaytards a victory. It has already been decided. The cross dressers want to see UF & Bama in the Dome for the SECCG. Period.

Tenn 45-19

October 18th, 2009
7:11 pm

Let the big dog cry!
You lost to LSU because they are a better team. You lost to Tennessee because they are a better team. You will lose to Florida because they are a better team.
Deal with it.
45-19

Frogger

October 18th, 2009
7:17 pm

Tenn 45-19, get your butt back to the Tech blog.

Frogger

October 18th, 2009
7:18 pm

Like the Vols are even relevant.

Eric

October 18th, 2009
7:23 pm

Tenn 45-19, Let’s just see how you like the Bama game. The pink panty wearing crew will go all out to award Bama a victory (as if Bama will need it). Crumpton will be eating turf on most snaps. Ouch!!

Wally Butts

October 18th, 2009
7:25 pm

You suck…I am embarrassed that your column is associated with UGA…

jay

October 18th, 2009
7:27 pm

Open letter to AJC:
Bill King is a joke. Not because I disagree with him, not because he looks funny, not because I’ve never heard of him…no, BIll King is not a journalist. He brings all of the insight and perspective of any other jacka__ sitting on the couch watching the game. “Fan-journalism” is great on random blogs. This is not a random blog. It’s the Atlanta Journal Constitution. They have someone writing a prominent piece almost each day about the Bulldogs who knows little about the game and less about reporting. I question whether Mr. King is even in Athens during the week, or for the games. Each week this space grows increasingly amateurish. I understand budgets are tight, but hire someone that knows what they’re talking about, whose opinion commands an ounce of respect. Perhaps even give some young journalist a chance, but this is garbage.

Mike

October 18th, 2009
7:29 pm

GEORGIA FOOTBALL sucks you got killed by an awful tenn QB. The refs didn’t cheat you guys against lsu your defense still could have stopped them and so could have Arkansas’s defense. Florida should beat you guys easily because you have one option AJ Green and your defense isn’t so great this year.Don’t worry Spikes will play in Jacksonville

Eric

October 18th, 2009
7:31 pm

The vowels lost to UCLA and Auburn at home. Deal with that, Rocky Flop clown. The Noxveel trailer trash gang are not a factor and you know it.

daddo

October 18th, 2009
7:35 pm

Maybe you UGA dogs can beat middle tenn state. That way you can be the second best team in two states. Two conference championships in 29 years: that’s not elite. That’s Michigan State, what you have been and what you always will b.

U wouldn’t score on Alabama.

Frogger

October 18th, 2009
7:48 pm

Maybe you can find your way to your teams blog, if they even have one.

Marie_the_Dawg_Girl

October 18th, 2009
7:48 pm

I don’t know what put a bee in jay’s bonnet, but he’s all wrong. Bill King is a first rate sports journalist.

Frogger

October 18th, 2009
7:49 pm

South Carolina even scored on Bama.