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

[...] State Penn and Iowa played solidly against good opposition, Kansas State embarrassed aTm, and Vandy is Vandy, as my daughter would say. This week’s “Big T1e1n Cripple Fight” goes to Indiana, [...]

chazzo

October 19th, 2009
6:58 am

I was glad to hear an announcer suggest that Tebow was anything less than perfect in the Arkansas game. When Arkansas was flagged for excessive celebration, the announcer stated, “He didn’t do anything that Tebow doesn’t do after a good play.” It appeared in the Vandy/UGA game that a Vandy defender ripped the towel from Cox’s belt and threw it up in the air. It seemed that nearly every hit in the UF/LSU matchup was head to head, yet, no flags.

I don’t so much have a problem with the idea behind these penalties, but they seem to be so abstract that they cannot be consistently judged from one game to the next or from one team to the next. What are the players supposed to do?

chazzo

October 19th, 2009
7:02 am

A “W” is a “W” even if it is a “w.” Young teams need to celebrate small successes.

As for UF, does anyone have their hopes up? I will definitely be pulling for my team. I mean maybe if they play and coach perfectly and their is a solar eclipse in the third quarter… I will always have hope, but that aint necessarily having my hopes up.

71 Dawg

October 19th, 2009
7:47 am

Bill – get a life and please make it somewhere else! You’re turning into Bradley and Schultz!

Tenn 45-19

October 19th, 2009
8:09 am

45-19. Deal with that. Last week you bozos were crying about your coaches, now you’re back to crying about the refs.
It’s the one thing your program and fans do best. Bama will beat us, but we won’t be whining about refs and bad calls.
45-19. Deal with that, poodle nation.

Sautee Dawg

October 19th, 2009
8:19 am

Bill

If you think that the officiating is not going to favor an unbeaten Gator team over Arkansas you’ve lost it. Refs say holding can be called on every play, seems like it’s only used to stop a drive for certain teams as was the case in Gators vs. Ark. Also the pass interference call usually has it’s suspect times to be called.
Block in the back is another team killer that could be called on every return but is only called on certain returns on certain teams.
If you think Bill that the SEC is not going to protect their own and miss out on big TV games (Bowl Games) then your slipping.
Refs like to be on TV too, and the bigger the game the more they like it. Feather in their cap.
Bill did you know the ref who called the penalty against AJ Green was from the State of Lousiana?

Bubba

October 19th, 2009
8:21 am

I’ve got a better idea for a drinking game. Tune in to the postgame show and take a drink everytime Kelin Johnson says “guess what?” On second thought, no. You’d die of alcohol poisoning.

Tenn 45-19

October 19th, 2009
8:32 am

This just in….Tennessee scores again!
45-19

Mister T

October 19th, 2009
8:51 am

Bill,
Tech fan here. I envy the dawgs in that they have a blogger and a seperate reporter for the team. Tech on has a parttime blogger in Chris who obviously doesn’t have the time to dvote to the blog that you do. Doug is a reasonable reporter, but seeing that he is a uga grad, he could never be expected to have the passion for Tech that you do for the dawgs.

To all the uga fans that think the ajc leans toward Tech, you are unrealistic. You are having a down year and you are going to get that reported. The reports sound bad, but they are true. But with the recruiting classes that uga gets every year, you will be back in hunt for a sec championship. I will still pull against you, but uga will be good again soon.

As for the celebrating penalties…this is not called consistantly from game to game. It leads to the frustration of the players, coaches and fans alike. The uga/lsu game was absolutely the worst. It was called pretty consistant within the game, but really none of the celebration calls should have been made. I was watching the Tech game that day and both sides would have had 45 yards in penalties had those officials been on the field.

What is really frustrating to me, having been an offensive lineman in my HS days, is that celbration by the defense happens way more often than by the offense and never gets called. That celebration is almost always in the taunting sense as well. They get away with it almost always.

I prefer that everyon just “act like you’ve been there before.” That is the ultimate “in your face.

Again, nice blog Bill.
But,
THWg!

JB

October 19th, 2009
8:55 am

Ok, everyone is THINKING we have a shot against the Gators.
1. They will hold us to 100 yards rush
ing
2. They will force Cox to beat us, which is doubtful, and put pressure on him all day, thus he’ll go 15 of 38 for 108 yards and no Td’s. You do the math.
3. Tebow will NOT lose to Georgia his Senior year.

4. Our D has struggled to hold an average offense at bay.Florida scores 35 to 42 points.
5. Do you really think Cox can engineer 35-45 points against the Gators. Uh, no.

SSI Dawg

October 19th, 2009
9:01 am

Dawgs have no shot vs Tebow & company, keep dreaming if you think otherwise.

Excessive Celebration

October 19th, 2009
9:03 am

JB, You’re right on.

Rick S

October 19th, 2009
9:05 am

A win is a win and I am grateful but it’s a sad day when Georgia has to get excited about beating Vanderbilt and Georgia Tech is celebrating a hugh victory over a very good Virginia Tech team! Hopefully this change in the landscape of Georgia Football will revert back to win Georgia actually looks forward to the BCS rankings!

Rick

October 19th, 2009
9:05 am

The win this weekend,is like walking up to the hoover dam that has a leak with a 80lb. bag of quickrete to patch the leak. It will hold for about two weeks then the water will really start comeing out.Just like the upcomeing FLA. game.

CMR is going to have to Free Willie for starters . If CMR does not make changes on his staff the money people will put expectaions on him for the next season that it will take a act of God for him to fullfill.CMR will have a Mayflower moveing truck in his front yard at the end of next season.

I think CMR is great man and a real postive role model for these kids. Bottom line, the donors want to see a return on there investment .They are not geting it. CMR and his excuses has worn thin with these people.It wound not shock me to see CMR let go after this season.

Mike

October 19th, 2009
9:06 am

I think if Tebow stripped naked and humped the goal post the officials would not throw a flag…however, if you are A.J. Green, don’t dare even look toward the stands when you score a TD.

Tenn 45-19

October 19th, 2009
9:08 am

A little trip down memory lane- Eric Berry laying the wood to No Show last year:
http://www.rockytoptalk.com/2009/5/26/885788/best-plays-of-2008-eric-berry
45-19

Excessive Celebration

October 19th, 2009
9:12 am

Rick- one friendly suggestion. You might want to run your message through spell check next time before you post.

Troof

October 19th, 2009
9:13 am

Dawgs lose bad to Gators. Accept the inevitable that Bama – Florida will happen in December in the ATL. There is no choice but to accept it.

Troof

October 19th, 2009
9:16 am

Oh, and quit the Kirby Smart talk. It isn’t going to happen. Why leave the best to come coach for a crumbling, has been program? The “Smart” thing to do would be to fire the head coach and replace him with someone like Kirby, a young up and comer who has some fire in his belly. Free ol’ Mark so he can sell some more Fords.

Jeff

October 19th, 2009
9:21 am

SEC Officials- slim of the earth. They are on UF payroll. Teblow is an idiot. The officials let him do what he wants whenever he wants. Hopefully he will get hurt again and watch from the sidelines. I have never loathed someone as much as him when he showboat. Classless just like the SEC officials. Sad the SEC Comm. doesent have the spine to address an issue that sportscasters are even calling out how bad the officials have gotten and how immune UF is to ANY kind of call

bugsquacher

October 19th, 2009
9:36 am

Too bad we dont have a game this week. We seem to play better after we have been embarrased. Looks like the only way we can keep willie’s & bobo’s focus.

If Im Richt, I make the team watch the last two minutes of the Florida game every night for the next two weeks. Including the time outs…. I would remind them of Urban/Tebow rubbing their faces in it….

Tenn 45-19

October 19th, 2009
9:37 am

Jeff-
Which is it, bad coaches or biased refs?
How about this one-inferior team.
45-19

Ben

October 19th, 2009
9:43 am

Yeah I don’t take much from beating Vandy honestly. Granted, I’ll take the W every time but Vandy is truly terrible. They have 2 wins over W.Carolina and Rice (who are winless) and a loss to ARMY. Kind of a shame after the year they had last year.

Glad to have a bye week before Florida but I still saw some of the same mistakes we’ve had all year in the Vandy game. I’ll be hoping for the best but expecting the worst against the Barbarians of Florida.

Mike Bobo 17 INT

October 19th, 2009
9:57 am

MATHDAWG

Typical UGAY fan..for your information the NCAA moves refs around in different conferences, and SEC officials do not always referee an SEC for the reason you mentioned.

Leave it to some UGAY fan to claim a conspiracy against UGAY, vs. lack of coaching and a quality program. LOL!!

DawginLex

October 19th, 2009
10:20 am

To “heres whats pathetic”

Youre making all of us look like idiots.

The entire SEC and the dawgs are so completely over-rated this year.

So, can-it until you can come up with something legit.

Burdell

October 19th, 2009
10:31 am

I love it that CMR’s Ford ad is adjacent to the BCS Standings on ESPN.com. He looks none to pleased!!!

GO JACKETS!!! BEAT THE WAHOOS!!!

SOUTH GA DAWG FAN

October 19th, 2009
10:38 am

Are there any I told you so’s coming from Athens about Martinez being a great DC after the brilliant performance against Middle southern tenn Jr. High school on saturday.

SOUTH GA DAWG FAN

October 19th, 2009
10:41 am

hump the goal post now thats funny ! 15 yards for for illegal use of hands because you know Urban would have to give him a hand.

SuperB

October 19th, 2009
10:43 am

What has happened to SEC officiating? Florida was the grateful recepient of two “phantom” personal fouls against Arkansas that led to the Gators’ second TD. On the first, for pass interference– NO flag should have bene thrown That was immediatley followed by one when the Hog player was reacting to a block by the Gator. These calls may have cost Arkansas the game right there!

azdawg

October 19th, 2009
10:59 am

The dawgs D over powered Vandy especially late in the game. However, on their blitz packages the big dudes (tackles) looked more lumbering trying to get to the QB. Need more speedsters in those blitz packages or else its a slow boat to china vs FL. If willie is smart he’ll study what Ark did to stop the FL option game early on and not wait or do what he usually does, soft D. Not sure you can stop Tebow all the time but hopefully they can snuff him some of the time to slow him down and don’t allow him to get into a rythem. D has to play lights out and just about a perfect game to stop FL. I worry about all that speed and our front 4 do not look as fast or agile as Ark’s front did in their game w/FL.

If miracles do happen it’ll most likely be the dawgs O playing and scoring like it did vs Ark. If so they have a chance or at least keep the score respectable. I

Doubt FL will have as many or any T/O’s as it did w/Ark. That would be a gift from heaven if they did. It’ll be up to the dawgs D to win this game and the dawgs O not to get overpowered by the FL D.

If GA keeps the score close they have a chance to win. Odds are against them if you base it on how they’ve played so far this season.
I believe in miracles and pray Willie and his D pull this off. It just might save his job if he does.

1eyedJack

October 19th, 2009
12:13 pm

The ball is oblong and bounces funny sometime. There is always the possibility that the ball will bounce our way. I.E. OSU/Perdue.

Joe

October 19th, 2009
12:29 pm

SEC Officials have determined that UF and Bama are to remain unbeaten at any cost.

Brian

October 19th, 2009
12:30 pm

Whe is someone going to hold Jackette Mike Slim from the SEC office accountable for his officials?????????????????

Cody

October 19th, 2009
12:31 pm

It really says something about the integrity of SEC when sports announcers on EVERY channel are talking about the inconsestent and biased calls made UF’s way.

Ted

October 19th, 2009
12:33 pm

SEC Officials: 23 Arkansas 20

Cody

October 19th, 2009
12:34 pm

SEC OFFICIALS: 20 UGA 13

Cody

October 19th, 2009
12:36 pm

Here is the SEC Standings: Just faxed this to Home Office. Thanks to the fan who posted address:
1.(tie) Florida
SEC Officials
2. Georgia
3. South Carolina
4. Tennessee
5. Kentucky
6. Vanderbilt

Steve

October 19th, 2009
12:39 pm

Do you think any of the officials working the UGA-UF game would be stupid enough to make a bad call? Wonder if Mikey the Commish (and grad from Tech) will attend???

Tenn 45-19

October 19th, 2009
12:46 pm

And this just in…..Tennessee scores again!
Must have been the refs’ fault.
45-19

Steve

October 19th, 2009
12:57 pm

Tenn 45-19. Where are the Hillbillies in the SEC standings???????? let me help you moron:
Florida 4-0 100 43 2-0 2-0 6-0 218 52 4-0 2-0 1-0
Georgia 3-2 159 153 1-1 2-1 4-3 189 194 2-1 2-2 0-2
23 South Carolina 2-2 87 97 2-0 0-2 5-2 170 130 4-0 1-2 1-2
Tennessee 1-2 80 68 1-1 0-1 3-3 192 117 3-2 0-1 0-1
Kentucky 1-3 74 121 0-2 1-1 3-3 147 148 1-2 2-1 0-3
Vanderbilt
That’s the problem with Hilbillies- no class and cant act like they’ve been there before….

Jeff

October 19th, 2009
1:00 pm

Hey Outhouse User (TENN 45-19) Starting to sound like a Vandy or Ky fan…one big win is all you can hang onto. Upset one of the big boys and that’s the talk of the season……..hahaha what a loser

mark

October 19th, 2009
1:02 pm

Rick- you are a moron if you think they are going to fire Richt after the season.

Roll Tide

October 19th, 2009
1:22 pm

This just in…….Tide takes Hillbillies to the outhouse for an old fashion whuppin……

Tenn 45-19

October 19th, 2009
2:01 pm

1989 UT 17- UGA 14: Refs’ fault
1992 UT 34- UGA 31: Refs’ fault
1993 UT 38- UGA 6: Refs’ fault
1994 UT 41- UGA 23: Refs’ fault
1995 UT 30- UGA 27: Refs’ fault
1996 UT 29- UGA 17: Refs’ fault
1997 UT 38- UGA 13: Refs’ fault
1998 UT 22- UGA 3 : Refs’ fault
1999 UT 37- UGA 20: Refs’ fault
2000 UT 10- UGA 21
2001 UT 24- UGA 26
2002 UT 13- UGA 18
2003 UT 14- UGA 41
2004 UT 19- UGA 14: Refs’ fault
2005 UT 14- UGA 27
2006 UT 51- UGA 33: Refs’ fault
2007 UT 35- UGA 14: Refs’ fault
2008 UT 14- UGA 26
2009 UT 45- UGA 19: Refs’ fault (and this just in…Tennessee scores again)
Who’s your daddy?!
45-19

Tenn 45-19

October 19th, 2009
2:05 pm

Roll Tide-
When you’ve had George Wallace as your Governor for several terms, you lose all rights and privileges of poking fun at other southerners.

CaliDogg

October 19th, 2009
2:33 pm

Any running play that shows the ball to the defense immediately and which runs E-W (i.e., outside the tackles) is destined to fail because of the speed of defenses today (especially on elite teams, ALA, UF, USC, for example). From a “regular” pro-set, I’m not even sure what the point of the play is, other than to get the ball to your back and let them find the hole. Problem is, as fast as defenses react today, there often is no hole to find.

The only team running wide with any consistent success (sorry — hate to say this here) is GT. And that’s because they run the option and their toss is going to a back already at the tackle spot (vertically) by the time he gets the ball. And that, too, will be shut down as soon as somebody figures out to blitz regularly into that running/toss lane.

If we’ve got a back who can throw out of the toss sweep, that might work once or twice during the year but the play itself — stinks up the playbook.

Roll Tide

October 19th, 2009
2:44 pm

TENN 45-19…when we own you as we do- we can do whatever we want. Do me a favor- can you list the scores of the Bama-UT games as well as you can UT-UGA? That series is alot closer- so it might take you some time. A Hillbillie is a Hillbillie and ours is Orange like a big Pumpkin!

Roll Tide

October 19th, 2009
2:46 pm

Hillbillie 45-19- you sure do talk alot of smack for a team that is going to get sent back to the RockyFlop Outhouse with a busted nose and ego……LMAO-

Roll Tide

October 19th, 2009
2:49 pm

and by the way- dont flatter yourself 45-19. Anyone from Tennessee is NOT a southerner- you may try to impersonate a southerner, but you are no southerner.

BamaJim

October 19th, 2009
2:50 pm

Roll Tide- I guess 45-19 is trying to get the scores from past UA-UT games so he can post here.