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

Jed Clampett

November 22nd, 2009
5:34 pm

My uncle has 3 trailers up in Nashville he wants to rent out for Georgia fans attending the Music City Bowl. 2 are double-wides and 1 is a single-wide. Each will sleep up to 12 drunk Georgia rednecks very comfortably. Each has running water and a 2 seater outhouse. Book now for top selection…….LOSERS!!!!

http://www.musiccitybowl.com/

Bob Horner stayed hurt

November 22nd, 2009
5:39 pm

Jed…is there a mini-fridge in the single wide..??? also can your throw in charcoal and a grill..??

Bob Horner stayed hurt

November 22nd, 2009
5:41 pm

Jed…I’ve already printed directions to Shreveport..(I don’t have a GPS..)…are you sure we’re going to Nashville..????

Producer

November 22nd, 2009
5:42 pm

Dawgs will lose to Tech and finish with six losses. Unacceptable for any major college program. Fire Richt. Not even goodwill should keep him. Don’t care what he did in the past, don’t care that his assistants suck. He’s responsible and he should not be working in Athens next year. Period.

DogsR4U

November 22nd, 2009
5:43 pm

SatchelBuzz: “Reckoning” is one of R.E.M’s best.

Producer

November 22nd, 2009
5:45 pm

And Richt would not get all of the remaining money under his contract if he’s fired. The contract will have a buy-out in the event of a firing that would not equal the all of the cash remaining.

jesse james

November 22nd, 2009
5:46 pm

Producer – I wonder what Oklahoma will do with Stoops. 6 losses, that is unacceptable for any major college program.WHAT A STUPID STATEMENT!!!!

EttieB

November 22nd, 2009
5:46 pm

Object lesson: Rennie Curran will likely leave for the NFL because he has an illegitimate one-year-old daughter he says he needs to “provide for.” Why didn’t this moron babydaddy think about this before he knocked up his girlfriend and then left her high and dry?

Curran is just one example of the unprincipled, undisciplined thugs that Richt recruits. And you expect to win with these jerks? Ha ha!

jesse james

November 22nd, 2009
5:48 pm

Hey Jed! I have a yacht down at Tampa if you know of any Tech fans that would like to use it. It’s the one with the UGA flag.

Producer

November 22nd, 2009
5:49 pm

Oklahoma shouldn’t be satisfied with mediocrity either, Jesse. Sack Stoop, too.

Bob Horner stayed hurt

November 22nd, 2009
5:50 pm

Jesee…he’s gonna ask if you’ll “finance the trip”…LMAO

Ga Tech Old Timer

November 22nd, 2009
5:53 pm

T. Slay – Thanks and here’s wishing the best for y’all as you try to figure out where the wheels came off and how to put them back on. It’s been many frustrating years since I reveled in the program at Tech under Dodd – hopefully it won’t take UGA that long to figure it all out. You has a first class program over there – even with this being an off year. Y’all have done the state of Georgia proud for many years – so here’s throwing you and the other “nice” UGA fans a high five for us both bringing an “elite” presence to the state when we talk and play the game.

Bob Horner stayed hurt

November 22nd, 2009
5:53 pm

EttieB….that’s a little over the top….I didn’t use condoms when I was 20….I was just lucky…no babys mamas….and if I had knocked a girl up…I wouldn’t have had NFL $$$$ to save me….just sayin…

jesse james

November 22nd, 2009
5:54 pm

Producer – I don’t think UGA is satisfied with 6 wins, but how many seasons under Richt have they only won 6 games. I agree, I’m frustrated too, but I don’t think you just panick and throw in the towel with people who have won before. I do think recruiting has got to get better and discipline put back in the program.

UA

November 22nd, 2009
5:55 pm

As a Bama fan, please keep Richt at Georgia. That will be one less football team to worry about in the foreseeable future. Keep on living off finishing 2nd a couple of years ago although in reality they weren’t close to winning the SEC or NC. Love seeing the calm, cool, lack of fire on the sideline each week, even when the team continues it’s error prone, undisciplined play.

Producer

November 22nd, 2009
5:55 pm

And Richt ain’t no Stoops, either, Jesse. At least Stoops has a national title.

jesse james

November 22nd, 2009
5:56 pm

Hey Bob, dang you could hit, but you stayed too close to the Tech campus in your playing days and you became soft like fuzz.

another outraged UGA alumni

November 22nd, 2009
5:57 pm

I hope that Richt, Dr. Michael Adams and Damon Evans realize how much outrage is brewing amongst the Dawgnation. There better be serious changes with the football program and they better do it within the next few weeks or they will see an enormous angry reaction that may threaten to bring all three down.

Martinez must be fired NOW!

November 22nd, 2009
6:00 pm

If Mark Richt doesn’t fire Martinez, Jacek and Fabris he will lose any support from the Dawg fans! He has already lost a good deal of support.

45ACP

November 22nd, 2009
6:01 pm

Bill – I agree. The lack of improvement at the QB position is just another failure in a season full of failures.
I remain hopeful for next year. We have a lot of good young talent.

knelson

November 22nd, 2009
6:02 pm

Georgia ,
This is what it is. You are an average program that has played to the talent you have over the past several years. Now the coaching is starting to show. Look at Tennessee. They have half the talent than Georgia but they are being coached to play above what they have. Keep making jokes about Kiffin & Meyer as they will be beating your tails for years to come as well as playing for a NC, long before your dogs ever will !

jesse james

November 22nd, 2009
6:03 pm

Producer – There’s alot of good coaches out there without National Championships. I didn’t say he was a Stoops. You must think Stoops is a good coach, I know for a fact that Stoops tried to hire Coach Fabris. If he’s good enought to coach with Stoops, why do alot of UGA fans want him gone.

Joe frank

November 22nd, 2009
6:03 pm

When a team recruits underachievers it gets what it recruited, coaching is not the issue.

knelson

November 22nd, 2009
6:03 pm

What did Martinez have to do with all of the turnovers? granted his defense stinks but he never threw an interception nor dropped a ball on Saturday! You pup homers are nothing but a bag of excuses year after year.

POSER

November 22nd, 2009
6:04 pm

Jack Bull all of those mistakes made by players could be caused by a lack of coaching, gee ya think!

45ACP

November 22nd, 2009
6:07 pm

No excuses here. The 2009 Dawgs have some issues.

Gabriel

November 22nd, 2009
6:08 pm

It use to be a rule of thumb special teams will win or lose 2 games a season. I have never seen such bad special teams play from a Ga. team.
Richt must get a recruiter who can spot intangibles in players as coachable, intensity, level headed, keeping mistakes to a minimum.

Dawgchow

November 22nd, 2009
6:08 pm

Yea – I agree – that Evans guy is a punk and a thug – can’t wait till he is gone. He is the hallmark of UGA players of late – undisciplined.

CoachesWallofShame

November 22nd, 2009
6:09 pm

Jesse, you must be on uga’s staff because if you were on the titanic you would have drown…as for high school coaches and ADs, I think it is the lowest level coaching job at certain schools….Some High School Coaches and ADs have the talent to work at the next level…In our case, it is the opposite ..

Steve i would get rid of John Lilly only because he can’t convince Bobo to through our “beasts” the ball and that is unacceptable…

Mitch

November 22nd, 2009
6:10 pm

Stop Georgia Tech next weekend !! That is joke and this coming from Georgia fan.
Willie Martinez could not stop a group of high school cheerleaders on there way back to there cars after a cheerleading competition.

A freind told me that CMR was getting upset at fans on his call in show .Saying “If the university wants to fire him let it happen. “. If this is how you feel about the University of Georgia. CLEAN out your office tonight .I will personally drive from north Georgia to help you pack!!!

If you, CMR get run out of town this year or next year, you sir have know one to blame but yourself. The University of Georgia football program has the best in the country: talent, facuality’s, and one of the largest athletic budgets among division I schools.

CMR your downfall will be as follows :( Someone please let me know if you disagree.)
(1) YOUR lack of team disciple during games.
(2) YOUR absolute loyal blindness to soft zone Willie. (If no defensive adjustment Willie was at any other school in the country would he still is employed there?)
(3) YOUR lack of ability to motivate this team during a game.
(4) YOUR lack of ability or simply not caring at all. (Which both seem to be pretty debatable at this point.)College football is a business plain and simple. WE give money to the University and pay you millions a year. YOU win football games. Pretty easy to understand.

UGAInmates

November 22nd, 2009
6:13 pm

What UGA player will be arrested this week?

jesse james

November 22nd, 2009
6:16 pm

CoachesWallofShame -What does the UGA Staff and the Titanic have to do with anything. Like I posted earlier, Stoops wanted to hire Coach Fabris and you think he should only be an AD. So much for your analysis and and how do you know how to rate these coaches anyway. Are you on the sidelines, in the box or at practice? Why don’t you call Coach Richt and set up an appointment and share all this knowledge of yours with him. I’m sure he would like to hear it.

td

November 22nd, 2009
6:17 pm

I am as frustrated as any fan but as bad as the team played on the field last night, my biggest disgust do not lay with the players or the coaches.

The fans at the game that were booing the team last night and leaving with 3 minutes left in the game need to have their season tickets pulled for a year and ban from the campus.

The so called UGA fans on hear talking the way they have about Evans, Cox and other players are a pitiful excuse for human beings. These players come out bust their butts and play their hearts out for the school. They do not get paid and represent our university to the best of their ability and for you non playing, non sacrificing pathetic fools to come on a public forum and speak of them in the manner I have read today just disgust me to no end. You do not deserve to even be allowed to watch UGA pr for that manner any college athletics.

RealDawg

November 22nd, 2009
6:19 pm

$$$$$$ talks. Tickets before the game were $5 and in excess. I don’t the CMR wants to see what is going to happen if he doesn’t make changes.

jesse james

November 22nd, 2009
6:19 pm

CoachesWallof Shame – I forgot to tell you that I went to the website and saw that you were inducted into the Wall of Shame in 2000. Hey that was a great picture. Damn you ugly!!!!

jesse james

November 22nd, 2009
6:21 pm

TD – I agree with you.

td

November 22nd, 2009
6:22 pm

BTW: Just for some of the disgusting things I have read today. My prayers are going up to please have CMR make no changes this year. This way maybe some of you all will turn in your season tickets, burn your gear and go and make another team wish they did not have you for there fans either.

REAL INFORMATION

November 22nd, 2009
6:24 pm

Georgia fans act like they have been some elite program in teh past 100 years. Ok, you guys had a good run for 2 or 3 years, but that has not been the norm for 30 years. Facts:
Big fan base: Idiots will follow anything.
Have not been anywhere close to a NC in 30 years.
Florida owns you guys
Looks like tech will own you guys for some time coming.

It’s fine to be a Georgia fan, but please don’t go around acting like you have been some great program in the past. It’s not true and you should accept the fact that Georgia will not be anything in the near future. Now go back to your fry station and STFU.

jesse james

November 22nd, 2009
6:25 pm

TD – I still agree with you. Most of these critics are like the kid that doesn’t make first string. They get mad and quit. They aren’t team guys. How would they like for their own kids name to be on public forum and criticized?

Man up DAWG

November 22nd, 2009
6:32 pm

Where does the tender hearted fans get off for telling fans not to boo or express dissatisfaction on this blog? This program has been on a downward trend since the 05 Auburn game. CMR is now toast in my book ! Im sorry but all we heard for the past few years is that we are just reloading every year and next year will be better. Next year? We are sounding like USC east Fans. We need a new direction you blind mediocre loving homers. This crap needs to end now!

Dawgs73

November 22nd, 2009
6:36 pm

Wow, our beloved Dawgs have stooped to new lows. We lost to Kentucky at home for the first time since 1977. Where are all the BLIND HOMERS like L-Dawg in BOLD caps praising our beloved coaching staff????

It’s quite clear how undisciplined, unprepared, and totally apathetic our coaching staff is…it’s time for change. Mark Richt is no longer above reproach, it’s time for Mark to make changes or the changes will be made for him. It’s completely unacceptable to sit around and not do a damn thing to improve the level of coaching quality in the sidelines. If he is not up for a competitive challenge, by hiring top tier assistant, then change must be made.

We are no longer relevant in the SEC, we are being passed by programs that are not going to put up with this type of apathetic crap.

td

November 22nd, 2009
6:36 pm

jesse james, Thanks. I know the vast majority of the fan base is sane and understand that we are having a bad year. It happens. Most of the fans can see the young talent on this team and know what the future will bring. For the love of me, I can not figure out the hate some of the so called fans on this forum are talking about the players.

I am in the process of writing my letters to CMR, DE and PA to try to convince them that the best coarse of action for our university is to try to purge so these type people. That can best be done by making no changes and hopefully they will get the message and leave. It may hurt the program for a couple years (dollars) but getting them out would be in the best interest for the long term benefits of the university.

dawgfan

November 22nd, 2009
6:37 pm

Serious Question: What is the UGA record for turnovers in a single season? We have to be getting close. That’s probably the only interesting thing about this team left to talk about, sadly enough.

DawgVoiceofReason

November 22nd, 2009
6:37 pm

jack bull,

It’s great to have your “voice” on this blog. There are way too many “children” here, throwing tantrums and and acting like spoiled brats, making Dawg fans look bad. All Man Up DAWG can do is fire off insults and pretend to be a tough guy.

Keep coming back and trying to add some sanity to the “discussion”.

DamntheButcher

November 22nd, 2009
6:38 pm

College players deserve to be booed. They are getting about 35,000 a year in a free ride so they need to put out or get the hell booed out of them.

td

November 22nd, 2009
6:38 pm

Man up DAWG, Are you one of the ones bashing the players? If so then I am calling you out and saying you are a pathetic excuse for a human being.

SOS Dawg

November 22nd, 2009
6:38 pm

Where have the dawgs of yesteryear gone? CMR said last year that they would practice and reevaluate the entire football program. What did he really do? Did he limit players on time spent in the pool at the Ramsey center? Cut down bowling night to only 2 nights a week? What a wasted year and a waste of talent. You people think we lose recruits because of fans booing yeah right, may the tooth fairy bring you a quarter sometime.

Disappointed

November 22nd, 2009
6:39 pm

WOW. I just read a bunch of comments about our football team and coaching staff. Out of the many posted here, only one contained a positive message. Yes, I am a frustrated fan, but reading what most of you have to say makes me more sick than watching the Dawgs fall apart in the second half.

I followed a link about Joe Cox and found this page. I have never been here before, and based my visit today will probably never be back. However, I felt compelled to leave an opinion of my own:

The University of Georgia was blessed when Mark Richt was hired as head coach. He turned our program around and has brought many wins and much respect back to our school. Yes, 2009 has been tough, but so was 1901 . . . UGA won the season opener but finished 1-5-2. I think we have rebounded from that terrible season and we will rebound again.

Vince Dooley often followed successful seasons with mediocrity – look up 1969, 70, 74. In 1977, we went 5-6 after winning the SEC with a 10-2 record the previous year. Good thing we didn’t fire him then or we might have missed out on a National Championship 3 years later!

Get smart people. Success in athetics has always been and always will be cyclical. Bobby Bowden has had ups and downs. Joe Paterno – ups and downs. Vince Dooley the same.

Mark Richt will also have ups and downs. Right now we are down. When we return to glory this setback will make us all appreciate the good times even more (although most of you will never realize this because of a short-sided view of everything).

Go Dawgs. Beat Tech!

Richt's Dilemma

November 22nd, 2009
6:41 pm

Richt will want Evans to give him a raise and extension or his agent will start making noise about the florida state job.

LAKE OCONEE DAWG

November 22nd, 2009
6:42 pm

Scott:
Leave Coach Goff out of the discussion…He had a 10-2 season when at UGA and was a great player for the Dawgs, was wondering in your line of work had you ever gone 10-2, or just how successful have you been???…You like many others are caught up in all of this 4 star and 5 star recruiting talk…It’s obvious that some of these big time recruits have not panned out…Sometimes it just doesn’t come together, but I’m not sure that just because you are a Georgia fan that you need to come on here and disparage Coach Goff or any of our current coaches who have known nothing except success while at UGA…You are the kind who would watch the battle from the hills, then come down after the battle is over and kill the wounded…You my friend are a gutless wonder….