Lack of improvement a hallmark of 2009 Dogs

Some thoughts and questions arising from the Dogs’ meltdown against Kentucky. …

The same problems plagued Georgia all season long, and while the players must take the blame for the turnovers and penalties, the fact that the Dogs never really could get a handle on either problem has to be seen as an indictment of Mark Richt’s coaching staff. Most of Georgia’s problems were a matter of sloppy or careless play, not lack of talent.

Looks like Joe Cox's eyes are closed when throwing this fourth-quarter incompletion. Maybe that explains those two interceptions. (Brant Sanderlin / AJC)

Looks like Joe Cox's eyes are closed when throwing this fourth-quarter incompletion. Maybe that explains those two interceptions. (Brant Sanderlin / AJC)

Early in the season when Joe Cox would make stupid mistakes, many of us gave him the benefit of the doubt by pointing out his relative inexperience despite being a fifth-year senior.

But the most damning statement that can be made about Cox (and his coach, Mike Bobo) is that the quarterback never got better as the season progressed. Saturday night, with nearly a full season under his belt, he was still panicking when pressured and making really dumb throws. His second-half interceptions were two of the most ill-advised passes I’ve ever seen a QB attempt.

Cox completed 12 of 30 passes for 291 yards, three touchdown passes and those two dismal interceptions. He threw some really pretty balls deep. On that two-pass scoring drive in the second half, I wrote down in my notebook: “Joe Cox at his best.” But he was hopeless at the 10- to 15-yard possession pass. And, like I said, his decision-making was just awful.

Was he coached at all this season?

On the fumble at the Kentucky 1-yard line in the fourth quarter: Everyone seems pretty sure now that freshman Washaun Ealey was too close to Cox on the pitch. You have to wonder, if Cox noticed that, why he went ahead and made the pitch anyway. More to the point, why were the Dogs trying a toss sweep in that key moment? Earlier in the game a toss sweep already had resulted in a fumble, and it’s a play that Georgia has had trouble with all season long. Was that really the wisest play call in that situation?

The Dogs fumbled four times, losing two of them. Is it lack of concentration? Poor fundamentals?

What’s left to say about Bryan Evans? I can’t recall a senior starter for the Dogs who I was more anxious to see move on to alumnus status. His tackling was typically poor. And what was he thinking with that blatant late hit out of bounds that helped set up Kentucky’s first score? I don’t blame him for that pass interference call in the end zone, though. He was clearly beaten by the receiver and really had no choice if he didn’t want to give up a touchdown on the play. It didn’t much matter, though, as the Cats did score on the drive with a receiver left wide open.

Georgia had 427 yards of offense, with 196 on the ground, but only 53 of those rushing yards came in the second half. Kentucky had just 63 yards of offense in the first half but ended up with 260. Which team does it appear made successful adjustments at halftime?

One of the officials should be credited with an assist on that first touchdown by the Cats for managing to insert himself into the play and screen the Georgia defender, basketball-style.

Third and short. Normally that’s good news for an offense, but more than once Saturday the Dogs were unable to convert. Kentucky dominated both sides of the line of scrimmage in the second half.

Can we finally agree that kickoff returns are not Branden Smith’s strong suit?

And on the flip side, kickoff coverage is such a train wreck at Georgia that the Dogs probably would be better off just deliberately kicking out of bounds every time and giving the opponent the ball at the 40. That wouldn’t be much different from what Kentucky got time after time Saturday night. That squib kick returned 20 yards by an up back just summed up how hopeless the Dogs are in this area of the game. And, again, that’s another problem that hasn’t improved as the season has progressed.

This is one year Richt and his staff definitely should back up to the pay window.

547 comments Add your comment

Season Ticket Holder Since 70's

November 22nd, 2009
1:54 pm

Here’s why we walked out last night prior to the end of the game…

Not because I knew we would win – or lose….

Because after a generation watching Georgia play, we were UP TO HERE with the thug behavior on the UGA sidelines. Dancing and prancing with long braids swinging, all while tied or behind in the game, commiting stupid personal fouls and then chest bumping and laughing about it on the sidelines. Trying to draw attention to themself instead of focusing on the game. I’m tired of the gansta “music” and the dancing and the arrests and the attitude and the costumes instead of the regular uniforms and coaches who are apparently don’t care or who don’t want to hurt the feelings of the class-less thugs they have recruited.

What happened to honor? What happened to pride?

Mr. Evans, with a program so flush with money, it probably doesn’t make any difference to you whether we renew the season tickets we’ve had for a generation, but it makes a difference to us. So, here’s one pair of season tix that will be available for the first time since an honorable man named Dooly led the 71 Team to the Gator Bowl.

R.I.P. Georgia Football played with honor.

Weed-Eater Bowl

November 22nd, 2009
1:56 pm

Georgia is ..#118 out of the 120 teams in turnovers.
Only two teams are worse.
That is really bad for an offensive coaching staff.
Mike Bobo is a pitiful coach,
just like Willie on the other side.

Weed-Eater Bowl not deserved

November 22nd, 2009
2:01 pm

Number 118 out of 120 teams in turnover margin.
Reicht and Bobo are responsible for this.

BOBOSAV

November 22nd, 2009
2:01 pm

Not sure if this has been mentioned yet, since I have not read all of these comments, but everyone think and compare where we have evolved to as a football program under Richt, and that of the present condition of a former strong program down in Tallahassee (FSU), FL.
The similarites and general complexion and makeup of these two programs over the last few years is almost identical.
Same type of leadership style and habits within the coaching staff’s.
I have a strong feeling since CMR has went on record as saying that he emulates, and even asks himself when a tough decision “what would Coach Bowden do”, that he feels his way works, and at all times just do the right thing.
Do we want our own little FSU in Athens??
They (FSU) still get plenty of blue chippers, and produce numerous NFL picks year after year, just like us, yet look at where they are and have been for awile now.
Its a matter of coaching and daily direction, I’m afraid.
Is this what we want in Athens??

Bling and blang

November 22nd, 2009
2:03 pm

These coaches are still at fault for going out and recruiting these “playa’s” . I get so sick of these punks stringing along the University of UGA on signing day with their hat tricks,jersey swapping and doning lime light bling while they dont have a clue because they havent played a down in college football. I’d rather have 2 and 3 star players who have heart and a motor with a never give up mentality to come and WANT to play for UGA.

Personal Foul

November 22nd, 2009
2:05 pm

Kentucky wanted that game more than Georgia.

ONLY SERIOUS

November 22nd, 2009
2:08 pm

OOnly serious Dawg folks should read on. Last nite was the last straw. The most embrassing loss in UGA history. The second half was more akin to Three Stooges or Keystone Kops!!Don’t forget the blocked punt! Things are ROTTEN all over. The way the campus is trashed is a reflection of the whole program. We’re headed toward the bottom like Michigan. Adams, Evans, and Richt either don’t care or are helpless to do anything about it. And don’t say all schools are like this. They’re Not!! WE are the trashiest. UGA fans and ALUMNI had better get their heads out of the sand or we’re in for more of the same. Treating CMR so cozy at Bulldog Club meetings is sickening. He should refund $100,000 for every loss. Ga Tech will humble us come Sat. BULLDOGS of the world, UNITE!!! Let’s stop this backwards slide now!!!

Muffin Top dawg

November 22nd, 2009
2:10 pm

Our lines of scrimmage needs to hit the weight room and throw around the medicine balls. Kentucky was whippin our butts in the 2nd half on both sides of the ball and they wanted it more. Its really has been painful to watch these past couple of years. New staff is needed!

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:14 pm

i do think that alot of y’all need to find another team to support…how soon we forget, if you love someone or something, you SUPPORT them during difficult times, you don’t s!@# on them..

another thing, for those of you, including you bill, that think coaching lost this game, you are really showing that you know absolutely nothing about football.. i don’t care who was coaching us in that game, we would not have won with the turnovers that we had, nor the QB that we have. and i don’t any one of you are present at practice to make a statement that someone else should be in there. i’m lucky enough to have a cousin, whom i’m very close too, play on the team, and cox is the best that we have this year..(unfortunately) and last, don’t knock the toss sweep call, which ealey, a freshman, thought was a handoff. we’ve scored many a toucdowns on that call, and it was obvious we weren’t going to make it up the gut. if he runs the play accordingly, he gets in no problem..

bottom line,, we’re simply not a good enough team, this year, to overcome the TO’s.

GO DAWGS…WE TRUE FANS ARE WITH YOU.. NOW, GO RUIN TECH’S SEASON!!!!

secondguesser

November 22nd, 2009
2:16 pm

What I’d really love to watch is the Evans haters on here line up on the field against him and voice their displeasure to this SEC athlete! You pukes are the reason this gator loves to rub it in! Pathetic! Get a life! UGA is NOT a power in the college football world! “Hushell” just gave you mutts a delusional ideal of self importance! PSST, that was thirty years ago.

oak island dawg

November 22nd, 2009
2:18 pm

This was a pathetic coaching job on all accounts–Please fire CMR and bring someone in who will instill a Bill Stanfill and Jake Scott type players and a coach that has some fire in his a$$.

Man up DAWG

November 22nd, 2009
2:19 pm

Jack bull you are ! You faint hearted moronic blind homer. Go support you local pee wee league. Go play some dodge ball to toughen up. Get out of our face with your excuses!

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:20 pm

according to most y’alls theories, i guess oklahoma shoudl fire bob stoops this year too. they’re only 6-5.. IT’S NOT THE COACHING PEOPLE… I really hope that you lunatic fringe folks don’t get what you want..we would really be taking a step in the wrong direction if you were running the program..

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:21 pm

no excuses, i just know my football,,, i think you are the one watching too much pee wee football,,

Man up DAWG

November 22nd, 2009
2:22 pm

you dont know JACK!

dawgfan

November 22nd, 2009
2:23 pm

No coaching changes means no donation or season tickets from me. Money will get Damen Evans attention. Damon, if you are a leader, you will make the hard decisions for the over paid head coach that will not. Lets see how the aw shucks, I’d rather be a nice guy goes when the stadium has even more emoty seats in it next year! I am officially embarrassed to be associated with this cluster of undisciplined punks and weak, and stupid (dive play on 3rd and long, toss sweep on the goal line)f%^$#*( “coaching” staff! Good bye. P.S. Tech will roll your weak a$$, and make you even more of a laughing stock than you already are. By the way, what QB has any experience for next year? CMR, you are an idiot!

Darren

November 22nd, 2009
2:24 pm

Season Ticket Holder Since 70’s & ONLY SERIOUS, you guys cited the very core problems of this miserable excuse for a major college athletic program!! It is so pervasive that I don’t think it can be reversed in the short term. It’s time to just clean house – from the AD on down to Richt and his pathetic side-show of a coaching staff. GT will absolutely stomp this UGA team because Richt & crew will not be prepared for the game. GT wins something like 58 to 20 and will control the ball for roughly 42 minutes. On second thought, maybe Richt has enough time left to order red pants, silver jerseys and white helmets for the game on Saturday.

Mutt Buster

November 22nd, 2009
2:24 pm

Fire Mark’s Rectum….Ah hear Notre Dame is looking for new coach…Send em Mark’s Resume.

Muffin Top dawg

November 22nd, 2009
2:25 pm

reckon Jeff Owens had his 3rd supersized meal at Mickey D’s yet? He is such a blob

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:27 pm

FIRST thing out of coach richt’s mouth at halftime, was ” protect the football, we have got to take care of the football”,,, i guess it was his fault boykin was hurt and smith fumbled the ball. i guess it was his fault cox didn’t see the DL on the screen pass. it was his fault ealey, a FRESHMAN, got the play mixed up…and last, i guess it was his fault cox made a very poor decision on that last pass play…we’ve been at the top of the SEC in recent years, minus UF, which everyone in the country is chasing, and we have a bad year and you want to blow the whole thing up,,,crazy!!!

dawgfan

November 22nd, 2009
2:29 pm

#9 please go to the NFL, and take the entire staff with you. Don’t go away mad…just go away!

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:31 pm

go get another team to SUPPORT!! you really don’t deserve to be a UGA fan,,, we dont need folks who can’t handle adversity…

Man up DAWG

November 22nd, 2009
2:32 pm

Jack bull you are full of it. Weve havent been at the top in recent years. 2007 was a joke too. We lost to SC and we were still behind Tenn and LSU. Its been since 2005 and we needed help from SC to get us into the champioship game back then. You are so delusional you blind homer!

Nashdawg

November 22nd, 2009
2:33 pm

I believe you covered it all. Now for some coaching changes….Not sure what their going to be but somethings about to take place.

Darren

November 22nd, 2009
2:33 pm

jack bull, what about the penalties and ignorant sideline behavior? Oh, that’s just guys being guys I suppose.

Damon Evans

November 22nd, 2009
2:35 pm

To Coach Richt: After watching UF and the new QB, John Brantley, toss three TDs yesterday, I wonder if we ought to give back ten thousand tickets to the Florida game next year. It looks like we will be forced to eat a lot of tickets to the Weedeater Bowl; must figure out how to cover that shortfall.

Bobby Houseman

November 22nd, 2009
2:36 pm

I’ve said before that I admire CMR as a person, but I’ve always felt that he’s not a good coach. This year’s Dawgs are the least disciplined team I’ve ever seen at UGA and I’ve been watching them since the 1950’s. If Richt is an honorable man, he’ll resign and leave Georgia. If he doesn’t, he and his entire coaching staff should be fired. It’s past time for a change.

H

November 22nd, 2009
2:38 pm

BOBO MUST MUST MUST GO NOW.

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:39 pm

we had 2 legit penalties called on us, evans’ late hit(boneheaded) and the punter(over zealous), the other 3 were not penalties..

richt is a top 5 coach in college football,, stoops need to be fired this year? meyer 2 yrs ago when they went 7-5? showing your ignorance, really

Man up DAWG

November 22nd, 2009
2:39 pm

Its this reality TV pop culture that has crept into the football program. No focus, do whatever, rules are just words on paper,lets dance and laugh no matter the outcome and the list goes on.

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:40 pm

dang dude, we win 10+ games EVERY YEAR,,, where have you been?

Bring Me the Head of Saint Simmons

November 22nd, 2009
2:40 pm

It’s deja FSU all over again. Chuck Amato’s FSU mojo expired several seasons back, while Tommy’s FSU game plan fizzled last year. This year, both daddy FSU and his former number one stooge will both have 6-7 teams after the bowl games. Do you notice a pattern? They didn’t forget how to coach…they simply didn’t keep up with the changing game and they continued to recruit undisciplined primma donnas. Perhaps they were too busy cashing paychecks and defending unqualified assistant coaches. And a final note, Mickey Andrews announced his retirement after this season. Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is not only insanity, it’s stupid, too. Bye Bye FSU boys.

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:41 pm

seriously, you sound like a tech fan,,would you go a pull for them,,, we really don’t need you, or want you for that matter…

Man up DAWG

November 22nd, 2009
2:41 pm

jack bull……. I bet you were always the last chosen on a team when you were still trying to grow up. Even till this day huh?

Coach Richt

November 22nd, 2009
2:42 pm

Jack Bull, please do not even mention me in the same sentence with Stoops and Urban. They both have championship rings and they make enough money so that their wife does not need to work on the TV show.

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:42 pm

ignorant sideline behavior?? tell me 2 teams that don’t around on the sidelines? they’re teenage kids, thats what they do..always have, always will…

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:44 pm

actually, i not, i played pro baseball, but i’ve got a sneaky suspision you’ve never played sports at all, other than rec ball

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:45 pm

tell me someone you would hire…i can’t wait to hear..

Sid

November 22nd, 2009
2:45 pm

Bill:

Does anyone on the coaching staff ever read your column? I hope so-it’s a classic. Well done !!!

Man up DAWG

November 22nd, 2009
2:46 pm

Jack bull ….7 of those games are against Weak sisters SEC schools and the OOC cupcakes but that average is now shot to hell after this season.

who cares anymore?

November 22nd, 2009
2:47 pm

clean house!!!!!!!!! hes lost control of the team and hes makin excuses 24/7. uga fans, lets admit, we far better off without richt. make a change d evans

Darren

November 22nd, 2009
2:47 pm

jack bull, there is absolutely no point in trying to reason with you. I suppose UGA will beat GT handily, huh? Yeah, I guess you’re right; UGA is a real class program and will go to the Chicken Sandwich Bowl where they will beat (Clemson?) 77 – 3. Yeah, there are no problems at UGA and we should just keep cheering those guys on because they’re winners!!

Cuz

November 22nd, 2009
2:48 pm

Too much of a carnival atmosphere at the tomb of Uga VII. Baylie took a rose, red of course, to the game to lay at his final resting place. People were lining up to get their family pictures taken in front of the tombs along with the wreathes and flowers. Baylie waited patiently in line and a photographer asked if she wanted her picture taken when it came her turn to place her rose. She told the photographer and me, “I don’t want to be in a picture placing a flower. It is not about me. It is about Uga.” She placed her flower and then we went looking for an elevator. Outside the entrance gate we stopped and spoke to one of the Seiler’s family. Baylie told him she was sorry he had lost his dog. He thanked us for our compassion. RIP Uga VII, you left us far to soon.

More on Baylie’s Ultimate Fan trip tomorrow. We are still wore out from the day and getting back after two in the morning.

Man up DAWG

November 22nd, 2009
2:48 pm

Jack bull…. I understand now you played for the Braves! That explains it!

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:49 pm

there’s only 4 or 5 coaches in the last 8-9 yrs that have won NC.. and i don’t think we’re gonna get one of those right now..

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:51 pm

everybody has a down year, darren,,let me guess, you’re perfect in way…tell me what you would do different?

Fools Gold

November 22nd, 2009
2:55 pm

Cuz…. I know you had joy within you for Baylie! I truly wished the outcome would have really put the cherry on top for you deep down and selfishly me too. Im still hoping for the glimmer of hope for the Dawgs next weekend. Go DAWGS

jack bull

November 22nd, 2009
2:55 pm

we could be notre dame, michigan, fla st,, heck we could even be like clemson..i, for one, don’t want that..we’re close, folks, be patient..it’s not going to happen every year..

bone

November 22nd, 2009
2:56 pm

tender hearted fan

November 22nd, 2009
2:57 pm

jack bull ……bwahhhhhhh bwahhhhhhh who would coach UGA ? bwaaahhhhhhhh!