Independence Bowl: The better team won

Washaun Ealey and the Georgia running game took a while to get on track. (Associated Press)

Washaun Ealey and the Georgia running game took a while to get on track. (Associated Press)

The first half of Georgia’s game against Texas A&M in Shreveport didn’t look so promising for the Dogs, mainly because poor play by the offensive line stymied the running game and led to some questionable play-calling by Mike Bobo. The Aggies were having success with run blitzes on first down.

But A&M’s fast-paced offense wasn’t looking much better early on. Georgia’s much maligned defense looked good up front and got a lot of pressure on Aggies QB Jerrod Johnson,  though linebacker and secondary play was sketchy.

Neither team scored in the first 27 minutes. They both looked rusty.

The difference in the first half was Georgia’s superior special teams play.

Georgia’s halftime adjustments on the offensive line were successful and the Dogs eventually took command of the game in the second half. And they seemed like the better conditioned team, too, as the Aggies looked flat-out tired in the fourth quarter. Thankfully, this wasn’t the same Jerrod Johnson that Texas saw in their regular season finale.

Basically, the better team won tonight.

It’s difficult to draw many conclusions about next season from this game since the Dogs will have a different QB and a new defensive coordinator. But I was encouraged by how Georgia ended the season.

How about you?

516 comments Add your comment

Go Dawgs

December 28th, 2009
9:21 pm

Erk Russell

December 28th, 2009
9:22 pm

2nd! Hopefully

ssidawg

December 28th, 2009
9:23 pm

Not a bad way to end the season.

dawggirl

December 28th, 2009
9:23 pm

Yes, encouraged. I really think we have a lot of young talent that I’m excited about. Yes, there is the question mark at QB. But that will sort itself out. The running game and o-line should be an advantage.

Defense is somewhat up in the air, but I still think we’ll be in a better position next year than this year.

Great game!

SugarHillDawg

December 28th, 2009
9:24 pm

See what UGA can do when it doesn’t self destruct? The SEC East is ours for the taking!

SOUTHGADAWG88

December 28th, 2009
9:25 pm

The future starts now…I would like to see another OL in this recruiting class

Jimmy

December 28th, 2009
9:25 pm

This is why I love college football. One season always leads into the next. Any time the dawgs win is a good one. Maybe Rodney Garner should get the DCoor. job? Just hire two experienced coaches for LBers and the secondary. Garner is valuable enough as our recruiting coor.

Marcus

December 28th, 2009
9:26 pm

Let the Aaron Murray career begin

Excited Dawg Fan

December 28th, 2009
9:26 pm

Remember never never never count Mark Richt out. Just ask Ga Tech and now Texas A & M.
With one hand behind his back(defense grad assistants”) look what they just did. Wow and amazing.

wiley

December 28th, 2009
9:26 pm

They looked good but lets be real…it was a Texas A and M team that was 6-6 with loses to some bad teams…and not one good win…just a game where they played texas close.

LJ of UGA

December 28th, 2009
9:27 pm

Ninety wins for Coach Richt in his first nine years. Elite company.

Barkin'Dog

December 28th, 2009
9:28 pm

The game is what I thought it would be. You’re right, Bill. Both teams looked rusty and uninterested. But the Dawgs blew past an inferior team and made a statement. 90 WINS IN 9 SEASONS SAYS IT ALL. CMR knows what he’s doing and knows what is coming. Next season will be great (compared to this year) and the following seasons will see SEC championships and one or two NCs. Mark my words. Aaron Murray will be here until it gets done. Then all of the Tech bloggers will have nothing to say. They will wilt away into a blue turf for their bowl games or, worse yet, a few bowls in Shreveport. Go Dawgs!! Happy New Year!! Except the Nerds… who will suffer another embarrassment versus a weak Big Ten team on the 5th.

rrich

December 28th, 2009
9:30 pm

great job dawgs 4 bowl wins in a role now lets lock a DC and get going for next year which should be a good one with all the talent we have returning. hope R.Curran will stay in athens one more year

Clay

December 28th, 2009
9:30 pm

Very frustrating at times; but, I’ll take a nice win. Got to feel better about the offseason after the way UGA came back out in the second half. Now, let’s get a DC!

devildawg

December 28th, 2009
9:31 pm

Great win for the Dawgs. 13 straight 8 win seasons should really be a point of pride for the Dawg Nation. To know that even in the “rebuilding” years, Richt and the boys can find ways to win is something a lot of teams don’t have. Way to go special teams. Didn’t look so hot at times during the season, but were the absolute difference today. And I also want to give a shoutout to the great 2nd half adjustments by the coaching staff, namely offensive. The difference was noticeable, and I was at the Kentucky game, so to see the team totally own the second half was a big deal. Way to go Dawgs!

Mikey

December 28th, 2009
9:31 pm

I look forward to the young talent and what we do with it-

Rambo, Smith, Boykin, Ogletree, A Murray, Charles, M Brown, Wooten, and crew…

Dawg Nation 09

December 28th, 2009
9:31 pm

Jimmy, I hope that you are kidding about Garner getting the new DC job. He is a recruiter. He knows nothing about defense or x’s and o’s. Georgia played a great game tonight. If all our games were played with low penalties and turnovers then we would probably have a 10-2 record during the regular season.

Burbank Dawg

December 28th, 2009
9:32 pm

I’m extremely encouraged about next season. We’ve got a bevy of young talent on both sides of the ball that got some experience this dreadful year. Like everyone else, I hope we get a solid D-coordinator, and hope that whoever wins the starting QB job next year is fit to lead the Dawgs to the SEC Championship game.

Finchdawg

December 28th, 2009
9:36 pm

Congratulations to CMR! We’re looking forward to a better year next year and several more under your leadership!

Atlanta Jacket

December 28th, 2009
9:36 pm

Ugag dominates a 6-6 team – congrats.

hop

December 28th, 2009
9:36 pm

georgia returns all of the offensive line except one backup,seven of the 11 defensive players if jones and curran leave early,all but one receivers and all running backs.

we do lose cox,but he was not the qb that bobo and richt said he was last summer.he was suppose to be very accurate,but he was far from being an sharp passer.

the dawgs are loaded next year and the qb will better than cox, whoever the new qb turns out to be.

South Georgia Republican

December 28th, 2009
9:36 pm

Encouraging- our quarterback play can ONLY get better next year, and everything else on offense is loaded. Our DEs have found their pass rush, and the athleticism in the backfield- Boykins, Cuff, Smith, Rambo and Cummings- is exciting. As we saw tonight, with pressure on the passer and athletes in the backfield comes turnovers.

The graduation of Miller and Evans is addition by subtraction; I hope Curren doesn’t have to go pro because of financial pressure, because if he does, he might not make it. Great college LB, too small and slow for the NFL.

And we will have the best 2 kickers in the NCAA AGAIN next year.

My only disappointment tonight was the return to poor tackling- no locking up! This has to be emphasized big time before next year.

2010 will be exciting- my sources say the next DC is in the NFL right now. It is amazing how well we played WITHOUT a DC.

GO DAWGS!

Vince Vance

December 28th, 2009
9:37 pm

What the heck happened to me in this game. I must have missed 20 blocks.

GoGeorgiaB-Dawgs!!!

December 28th, 2009
9:38 pm

It would be interesting if the LSU game had played out differently – how incredibly good Georgia’s season would have become. I don’t understand how they beat Auburn and Georgia Tech – both with very good teams- and everyone is slamming our beloved DOGS!! Can’t wait to see how good our team is next year!

South Georgia Republican

December 28th, 2009
9:40 pm

Atlanta Jacket-

6-6 in the Big 12 may be better than 10-2 in the ACC; either way, both were squashed.

30-24; 8 of 9.

Go DAWGS!!!

Top Dawg

December 28th, 2009
9:41 pm

I am encouraged.

If one has to look for faults, as we in Dawg Blawg Nation are sometimes apt to do, our offensive line continues to be something other than the bedrock strength of the team. If I recall correctly, they were billed as a great offensive line pre-season. They certainly should have been a strong part of our team this year, since so many of them got so much playing time last year due to the injuries.

Overall though, provided we get an A+ defensive coordinator, I think the Dawgs are poised to win more than eight games next year.

Herschel Talker

December 28th, 2009
9:43 pm

Thank God we never have to see Brian Evans on the field ever again.

Top Dawg

December 28th, 2009
9:43 pm

I have been waitin’ for “next year’s team” for over 20 years.

GR82BAG8R

December 28th, 2009
9:43 pm

Congratulations on an impressive victory over the Automatic Teller Machines. Another victory for the SEC!!!!!

Saint Simons

December 28th, 2009
9:44 pm

45-42!!!!!!!!!!!!! Just a reminder!!!!!!!!!!

Dawgdad

December 28th, 2009
9:44 pm

If we had fired those coaches a few weeks earlier, I’m convinced that we would have beat a couple more teams. Cudo’s to Rodney Garner and the two graduate assistants. Best defense of the year against a good offensive team. We were actually putting pressure on the QB, turning our heads and making plays (interceptions) on defense, and the special teams looked Special again, more like what we expect at Georgia. Didn’t miss Willie, Jancek, or Fabris one bit. They should refund their salary for this year. Great victory, looking better for next year as we hopefully will never have to make do with a QB again. Joe Cox is a wonderful guy and great team member but his QB skills are not up to Georgia standards.

Big L

December 28th, 2009
9:48 pm

No Atlanta Jacket, UGA dominated a 10-1 team, being a Yech fan , you oughta remember.

Atlanta Jacket

December 28th, 2009
9:48 pm

Ugag also dominated the best team in the ACC. I forgot to mention that.

BAMA STAN

December 28th, 2009
9:48 pm

12 NATIONAL TITLES – 22 SEC TITLES!!!

Congratulations to UGA in representing the SEC!!

I was really concerned that UGA was going to get beat tonight by a fired up TEXAS A&M team in basically a home game……and predicted that an upset – much like UTAH over ALABAMA last year – was a great possiblilty.

REGARDING THE ANNOUNCERS:

Barkin'Dog

December 28th, 2009
9:50 pm

And to make matters worse, Willie, Jancek, and Fabris will get bowl checks for not coaching the game. Money well spent… but the UGA assistants deserve more than they got.

Denver Dog

December 28th, 2009
9:51 pm

Atlanta Jacket UGA dominates a 10-1 ACC champ too! Congratulations to the dogs on a great save of what could have been a terrible ending. Richt Rolls in 2010. Hawkeyes do too!!!!!

McDonger

December 28th, 2009
9:51 pm

Denver Dog

December 28th, 2009
9:53 pm

Bama Stan, A&M faced an uphill battle just to stay on the field with UGA. UTAH was a better team and Bama was flat.

8-5

December 28th, 2009
9:53 pm

Oh boy we won the Shreveport Classic!

anotherdawg

December 28th, 2009
9:54 pm

How bout Shawn Chapas. Just like the pass, with him a getting a few more carries, it gives the defense something else to think about, plus he’s a load to bring down.

Oscar

December 28th, 2009
9:54 pm

Way to go, BullDawgs!!!! A fine game – especially for the UGA seniors. Absolutely loved the way Ealey, King and Chapas ran rough-shod over the Aggies. Heck, I thought I was watching the North Avenue Trade School defense trying to stop the UGA run. Ha!!!!!!!

BAMA STAN

December 28th, 2009
9:54 pm

12 NATIONAL TITLES – 22 SEC TITLES!!!

REGARDING THE ANNOUNCERS:
– WHAT A BUNCH OF TEXAS A&M HOMIES!!!
– Stats were what they were as UGA scored 14 points on 25 yards of possession thanks to the kickoff return and blocked punt – giving TEXAS A&M basicall three possessions in a row to run up stats.

Check the stats in the second half – that’s what mattered most – and UGA was the more physically dominating team. Check TOP and RUSH yards.

Again – Excellent job!

Let’s hope BAMA can play like the DAWGS against TEXAS!!

ROLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL TIDE!!!!!!!!

cattle dawg

December 28th, 2009
9:55 pm

A win is always better than a loss. I have a good source that says Todd Grantham will be next dc if Kirby Smart doesnt take job.

hunker down

December 28th, 2009
9:56 pm

Nice win! Hopefully, we will rebound next year and get back to a ten win season. I think our record was not indicative to the team. Misfired in two games, however we could of and maybe should of been a ten win team this year.

Denver Dog

December 28th, 2009
9:57 pm

I guess the question would be ?

Denver Dog

December 28th, 2009
9:57 pm

Does Rodney want the job?

Denver Dog

December 28th, 2009
9:59 pm

Roll Tide is right, let’s bring home all the bacon that we can, the SEC needs to keep its dominant role, good luck Stan and Tide. We can pick on each other again next August.

hunker down

December 28th, 2009
10:00 pm

Good luck in National Title Game Bama Stan! Roll Tide and SEC. Still contend Dawgs should be the true ACC Champs after swatting the bugs.

JS

December 28th, 2009
10:00 pm

Great win in Shreveport! Pre-Season number one next year? Is it too early for you Dawgs to think you’re already next years best team? Will you ever compete with Florida, ever?

richard cranium

December 28th, 2009
10:01 pm

UGA makes a statement..?? Really??

What statement might that be??