It wasn’t the fumble that doomed Dogs in Columbia

Georgia's defense had no answer to the Gamecocks' Marcus Lattimore. (Associated Press)

Georgia's defense had no answer to the Gamecocks' Marcus Lattimore. (Associated Press)

The initial temptation in assessing Georgia’s disappointing loss in Columbia is to say, as Mark Richt did after the game, that if only Washaun Ealey hadn’t fumbled inside the Carolina 5, the Dogs might have tied it up and it would have been a whole new ballgame.

But I’m not sure that’s really true. By that point, Steve Spurrier had already figured out that all he needed to do was just keep giving the ball to tailback Marcus Lattimore, and the Dogs frankly had no answer for that, in part because of absolutely horrendous tackling all day long.

Yes, Lattimore looks to be a special back. But way too many of his 182 yards Saturday were after contact. For for a team that supposedly stressed defensive fundamentals in the offseason, the Dogs looked nearly incapable of stopping the run. That’s got to change.

They didn’t tackle much better on passing plays, either, which exacerbated the height advantage Carolina’s receivers already had. About the only positive for the defense Saturday was Georgia successfully pressuring Stephen Garcia. But even then he frequently was able to dump the ball off and still get positive yardage, something Georgia’s Aaron Murray struggled with.

Speaking of Murray, the redshirt freshman made a few mistakes but generally played as well as could be expected considering he appeared to have been hamstrung by Mike Bobo’s ultra conservative, shamefully predictable playcalling. It also looked like Murray’s  coaches had drummed it into his head that he shouldn’t take off running when his receivers were covered, so much of the spontaneity was taken out of his game.

The reality, as Richt conceded in the locker room afterward, is that with Murray Georgia’s coaches have to “just let him play.” There was one sack Murray took in the first half when, having been chased out of the pocket, he seemed lost about what to do. His natural inclination, no doubt, was to tuck it and run, but he didn’t.

The Dogs had their moments offensively on Saturday but only in spurts. Mostly it was three-and-out. Bobo offered up nothing that should have surprised Carolina defenders. I mean, Ealey in the Wild Dawg or wildcat or whatever you want to call it is about three years behind the cutting edge.

Even as thin as Georgia is at quarterback, it does no good to try and play it safe if it means you take Murray out of his comfort zone. They have to let him play the best way he knows how.

On the other hand, perhaps a series or two riding the bench next week might get the message to Bacarri Rambo that loafing on the field just won’t be tolerated. You have to wonder if the fact that Rambo was pretty much a designated starter all through the offseason got into his head a bit. He definitely didn’t look like the Rambo of last year, who was willing to sacrifice his body for a stop. As former Georgia player Verron Haynes tweeted after one play that Rambo took off: “[I'm] usually not [negative] on players but #18 that was not UGA football!! We hit hard EVERY PLAY.”

Overall, a disappointing day on both sides of the ball. I’ll have more on Sunday. …

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317 comments Add your comment

Dawg Tired

September 11th, 2010
8:33 pm

Bill – While I disagree with most of your analysis in that I thought we played well most of the game. Lattimore is very special and I expect to see him breaking tackles every game he plays in.

You are right on about Rambo. He looked scared to hit to me. He needs to be replaced. On the long pass down the middle if he had come in hard on the receiver it would have been an incomplete pass. They would not have scored on that drive. Big difference. I expect Grantham to not put up with that crap. We’ll see.

BONAIREDAWG

September 11th, 2010
8:34 pm

SIMPLE. ITS ALL ABOUT RECRUITING AND WE ARE NOT EVEN GETTING THE BEST PLAYERS IN OUR STATE. THEN WE ARE LOSING A LOT OF THE BEST ONES TO INJURY AND OFF THE FIELD ISSUES. WHY DO WE HAVE TO BEG THE BEST PLAYERS IN GEORGIA TO PLAY FOR GEORGIA???? THEY ARE AT FSU, FLA, ALA, AUBURN, AND CLEMSON ETC.. GO DAWGS!!

Mark

September 11th, 2010
8:37 pm

As a Carolina fan, we are used to those few pathetic people who will not give credit where credit is due. Marcus Lattimore is the real deal. It wasn’t just Georgia’s players not tackling that allowed him the yardage he got. That ability is one reason Carolina recruited him so hard.

I hope the Georgia fans who attended the game were treated with hospitality by the locals. It was a big win for Carolina, and even Spurrier is now saying this team MAY do big things this year. Good luck to Georgia the rest of the way. Hope you can wish us luck as well. The fans here deserve a big time winner. It’s long overdue.

the tide is in

September 11th, 2010
8:39 pm

The Tide is showing you what UGA can be if they hire a big boy head coach.

saban

September 11th, 2010
8:40 pm

Just think dawgs fans only 5 more beatdowns and you reward is not having to go to Shreveport.

Red Panties, Helmets, 1000 dollar jerseys. Looks like a special year.

Thanks AJ

September 11th, 2010
8:47 pm

The problem is not recuriting. We are in the top ten to fifteen in recuriting year and and year out. I don’t understand why Richt can’t do anything with the talent he recruits. South Carolina would love to get the recruits Georgia gets. If they did, the beat down they put on our players today would have been worse, maybe like those we have been getting from Florida and Alabama.

dawg

September 11th, 2010
8:48 pm

I thought our safeties had linebacker mentality, obviously not true mark richt since none of our safeties can’t lay a hit. Are they scared???? Instead of laying the hit, they’re the one that were receiving the hits from there running back and receivers…….TEACH THEM HOW TO TACKLE

DawginOH

September 11th, 2010
8:52 pm

This loss hurts so badly because (minus the RB) it’s not like SC played a particularly good game either. It was a typical 2009-style “beat yourself up loss” for the Dawgs this afternoon. What happened to CTG’s intensity and belief in fundamentals? I thought the D not tackling was one of the reasons they fired CWM.

I’d hate for Bobo to coach down Aaron Murray for the rest of his time at UGA. Murray is a brilliant talent and should never appear scared to make plays like he did today.

Overall, an embarrassing performance by the Dawgs. They better get some work done on the practice field ASAP or next Saturday could be worse.

East hater

September 11th, 2010
8:52 pm

Please dont fire the preacher man.

Former Midget Football Player

September 11th, 2010
8:54 pm

UGA in deep trouble?

Did some idiot on here wish that Washaun Ealey blows out a knee? Get a life you stupid moron, it’s a football game. You never got to play but your going to wish injury on a 19 year old kid because he ruined your afternoon? Now you can’t wear your new sweatshirt to work and brag? You probably don’t have a job anyway. I hope your kids live a long and healthy life, and Ealey too. You, on the other hand, will probably get what’s coming to you

Derek Dooley

September 11th, 2010
8:55 pm

Hey, boys, look at what my team is doing against #7 Oregon and what your team did against, who was it again, oh, ya, South Carolina (hahahahahaha). Your vaunted offensive line did nothing (aren’t they all seniors, mine are freshmen). Your thug running back fumbled (gee, that’s surprising that he has no discipline). Your defense arm-tackled all day long (new DC same problem). By the way, Baccari Rambo needs a name change. Baccari “Cum Ba Ya” comes to mind as he’s a much kindler and gentler DB this year. I’m available and, I think you know, my Dad coached there for a few years. Have your people call my people. Love ya. Derek.

East hater

September 11th, 2010
8:56 pm

uh oh, Tenn looks good; UGA 4th in the east.

Delbert D.

September 11th, 2010
8:57 pm

I watched two new 3-4 defenses today, and missed tackles was the order of the day. If they are still doing it in late November, Georgia and Georgia Tech should play offenses-only. Let ‘em make up stuff on defense as they go. Ole’

boots

September 11th, 2010
8:58 pm

Honestly, a lot of people – me included – expected to lose one of the SC / AR games. The true test will be if we can win next week. Tackling and run blocking were horrible. I am also a fan of Mike Bobo and love the idea of having a UGA QB working in the OC position, BUT I am just not sure the guy can get it done. He is not inventive and we were terribly predictable for having a good offense. Maybe SC has a great defense, but are they THAT good???

BONAIREDAWG

September 11th, 2010
9:07 pm

IF ITS NOT RECRUITING WHY DO WE NOT HAVE A BACKUP QB OTHER THAN A TRUE FRESHMAN, QUALITY AND BIG TIME RBS, NO RECIEVERS OTHER THAN AJ, NO DL AT ALL ?????

UGAlivinSC

September 11th, 2010
9:09 pm

Just goes to prove that money, talent, & facilities don’t win titles. You actually need COACHING! Scrap it all and start over!

FB Fan

September 11th, 2010
9:16 pm

9 arrested players since March, 1 AD arrested holding some hos red panties, best player getting paid by an agent, Spurrier besting us at yet another school and now UT looking like a winner??? Can it get worse?

UGA Typical Optimist

September 11th, 2010
9:20 pm

Aw, wait till next year!!!! We’ll have a team next year!!! Just wait and see!!!

SOUTHGADAWG88

September 11th, 2010
9:21 pm

Couple thoughts….Rambo and Hamilton got punished today….we are too small at S and CB.Where was Kwame and Justin?Tyson is not going to get it done against a running team.The OL is off to a slow start as usual.We may never be a dominant run blocking team.Boy do we need another RB!Let the Freshman sling it next game!

Loran Whatta Ya Got

September 11th, 2010
9:22 pm

Look at the weed-eaters falling from the sky!!

Look at the weed-eaters falling from the sky!!

Goodbye SEC dreams, helooooooooo Shreveport once again!

FB Fan

September 11th, 2010
9:23 pm

He may be called Rambo but he played more like Bambi

Skitty Fritty

September 11th, 2010
9:30 pm

South Carolina has only been favored in this series 3 times in the past 20 years and they have won all three. UGA will be just fine. Give USC some credit. USC has to play Florida and Alabama so UGA is not out of the East race by a long shot. Pretty sad how so many fans love to get down in the mouth after one loss. Why don’t you wait and see how we play against Arkansas. I think this season will show that USC is a better team than people think. The rankings in September mean nothing as we see from GT, Va. Tech and Oregon to name a few!

Stinger

September 11th, 2010
9:33 pm

Turn out the lights !!!!!! The party is over. Long season for dawgs. No offense, no defense, no coach.

Visor Boy

September 11th, 2010
9:37 pm

I told you boys that I would beat you again. Doesn’t matter what school I am at I will always beat you guys. Bhwaahhh, haaaaaa, haaaaa.

still a dawg fan

September 11th, 2010
9:39 pm

face it everyone—Carolina is a more talented team then the dawgs—even though we played better on defense(still can’t tackle) the Carolina defense was way better especially in the front 7 & a lot faster then our defense

bwell

September 11th, 2010
9:40 pm

Im sick of this S__^*$) it was two different qb’s from last week and this week, the kid doesnt see anyone open so he tuck it and ran, this week he looked confused, run the damn ball and make the defense account for you as a thrower and runner, IM SICK OF BOBO AND HIS CONSERVATIVE CALLING MAYBE ITS TIME FOR HIM TO LEAVE TOWN. ITS SICKEN

damnthebutcher

September 11th, 2010
9:44 pm

Maybe the Ga coaches will watch the AL game and learn how the game is supposed to be played.

Willie Martinez

September 11th, 2010
9:46 pm

Do you GA idiots see what the team I coach did today?

Bobby

September 11th, 2010
9:46 pm

Surprised all the “fake Georgia” fans coming on here and saying “Bobo stins”, “Richt stinks”, blah, blah, blah.

A true fan would never say that. It’s just 1 game, if Georgia wisn the rest, this game means nothing. Let’s lace em’ up, bang some heads, and what happens in Arkansas.

James

September 11th, 2010
9:46 pm

As a Tech fan, I had to change the channel from our debacle and hoped to (at least) see some decent football from UGA. Instead, I just saw that kid Lattimore tearing it up, which was impressive. But the dogs looked weak. Much like Tech did. Wow, pathetic all around.

Both Tech and UGA should take their bad losses and learn something, and quick!

Murray looked decent. Ealey did too… at first. Everything else was very boring to watch…

Good luck to both of us. If we play like that all season, both teams are in for a really bad time.

Jerry

September 11th, 2010
9:48 pm

If Washaun doesn’t fumble ther eon the goal-line, it’s 14 all. Then it’s a special teams battle, and I like Georgia’s chances. Unreal that happened on the goal-line. Georgia still hasn’t fixed the offensive giveaway problem, an int last week, lost a fumble, on the goal-line this week. Need to get that fixed, fix that, and Georgia would have won this one or lost 17-14, so not as bad as it looks.

Dawggonnit

September 11th, 2010
9:48 pm

Murray played very well for his first SEC road outing. Defense looked like a high school D. I thought Martinez had had come back for one last game until i saw CTG on the sideline. And where was the fire he usually shows. Did CMR tell him to calm down or something Not to take anything away from Lattimore, but there were so many plays where he was stopped in the backfield or otherwise and the D just didn’t wrap him up, or any other players for that matter. POOR TACKLING was a huge key today. Bobo’s play calling is still suspect at best, especially in the red zone. Like many have posted, the team just looked scared or trying not to lose. Rambo seems to be bi-polar as a player. He is good at tackling in open field, but covers like my dead grandmother. No wonder he let a 60 yarder go last week by a weak team. SC just outplayed us today. How many times did the D get to the ball right away BUT then not wrap up and let the offense pick up extra yards. Mallet is going to light us up us next week.

ricardo

September 11th, 2010
9:48 pm

It was obvious at the half that the dawgs were not going to win this game. Riding Lattimore high while he carried several Dawgs for more yards. Inability to score from the red zone and the big holes opened in the D line . and what is this meeting the ball carrier in the open field with a low block ? scared of a head on tackle ? clicked off the TV and repaired to the outside at the half knowing it was futile. how do you say out coached by Spurrier again?

lizboy

September 11th, 2010
9:50 pm

Wooooooshauuun Easy—–what a whimp. Just think of all the money in the UGA Football Program. And what do we get?—Traffic violations and what?——selling things to who? Man you cant make this stuff up—-gonna be a loooooooonnnngggggggggggg season for the baby pups. Whooo–better them than me—

Donnie

September 11th, 2010
9:50 pm

Just a couple of tweaks. Dont’ fumble, especially on the goaline. And score touchdown’s when you get in the red zone, not kicking stupid field goals. Field goals don’t win you ballgames. If you get in the red zone, take some chances, be unpredictible, and consider it 4 down territory.

BlawgDawg

September 11th, 2010
9:53 pm

The Bulldawg Nation needs to rise up and smite the idiots in charge of this afterbirth. We looked better under Ray Goof and that jugglin’ boob Donan than this emotionless bunch of dimwits. I’m sick of DoDo’s stupid play calling – the only thing he can do successfully is snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. How bout this smidge of genius: run thug up the middle, but spray his paws with some stickum. The Dawgs lack three things: size, talent, and coaching. Kirby Smart and Muschamp’s teams play with some MEAN. Look at how Bama stopped Colt McCoy – we’ve lost the Erk toughness. Somebody get Wrecked and DoDo a ouija board cause it’s the only way they’ll ever get a clue.

Jared

September 11th, 2010
9:56 pm

I actually wasn’t too upset with the game. South Carolina always plays us close, and we have a young squad at some key positions. Tackling was very poor, and Grantham didn’t seem to show his fiery side even when the fundamentals were so poor.

But, we had a chance to win at the end of the game. Ealey really isnt too blame too much, he had the ball pretty well protected, just a good strip. SC just plain beat us.

As for the rest of the season, I don’t think we’re gonna see a runningback as strong as Lattimore for the rest of our season, and our pass rush/pass protection was actually pretty good. Held Garcia to 160 yards? Last year he had 350. Who knew a Spurrier team would run the ball 30 million times. I think we’re gonna end up SEC east champs, honestly. The offense will be way better once AJ Green gets back, he’ll make plays but mainly he’ll cause teams to respect the passing game, which opens up the running game. Today South Carolina was able to just focus on stopping the run and challenged a redshirt freshman to throw it. With AJ back they will not be able to focus on the run so much or they will be in a world of hurt. Florida, SC, and Tennessee all have to play Alabama this year. South Carolina will surely lose to one of: Florida, Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee, or Auburn. We just need to win out, which I think we can do, and beat Florida, which will be a crapshoot this year…

Jake

September 11th, 2010
9:56 pm

UGA looked soft, under-conditioned and unmotivated. And the only way to explain the play-calling is that Bobo bet the mortgage on South Carolina.

Glad yall have richt and bobo

September 11th, 2010
9:57 pm

no nc title ever. woof woof

tdog

September 11th, 2010
10:00 pm

It is going to be a looooooong saeason

LilburnDawg

September 11th, 2010
10:09 pm

Look folks. We do not have the proper personel yet to run the 3-4 defense. The engine of the 3-4 is the nose and 2 middle linebackers. Tyson is way under sized to play nose at 290 lbs. Our mike backers Robinson, Dent, and Dowtin are all under 225 pounds. That ain’t gonna cut it. Look at Alabama’s Donta Hightower. 6′4 260. Thats what a 3-4 mike is supposed to look like. If you noticed Lattimore ran straight at us mostly. We are real soft in the middle.

Rick

September 11th, 2010
10:10 pm

Same game with SCU as for the past 4 years. Same coach, same game.

You dawg folks need a coaching change.

I was a dawg fans for about 40 years but am now a fan of GSU where I graduated.

I worry about you guys. This program is going nowhere in a hurry.

dejavu

September 11th, 2010
10:11 pm

Dawggonnit

September 11th, 2010
10:13 pm

OldFan, your comment is Spot On brother! I saw NOpassion what so ever in our players today. We need a big spark and it has nothing to do with changing the colors of the uniforms like years past. Someone has got to step up and light a fire under these boys asses or it’s going to be a LOOONG season. Regardless, I still love my Dawgs and have to stick with’em. GOOOO DAWGS, re-group and GATA! True fans will agree!!!

Kooter Brown

September 11th, 2010
10:15 pm

I hope the last thing said about our next coach is(HE’S A NICE GUY). I want a jerk that can coach. Saban, Myer, Spurrier, Muschamp maybe

benchRambo

September 11th, 2010
10:20 pm

#18 Rambo tackled like a girl playing flag football. How he was not benched during the game is surprising. If he starts next week, then that will let you know what type of personnel this team has. Very poor tackling throughout the entire game.

mook

September 11th, 2010
10:25 pm

FIRE BOBO YESTERDAY

KEUKADAWG

September 11th, 2010
10:25 pm

Someone earlier made the comment that things changed with Georgia football a few years ago. I agree ! I’m not sure how to specifically describe it, but it seems to be plain old toughness. The kind of feeling that you knew we were going to man up to our opponent and beat him/them through being tougher than the other guy. We seem to finesse tackle, we hit and bounce off without stopping the runner. Our opponents yards after initial contact must lead the nation. As I stated, I’m not sure what to call it, but a simple lack of toughness seems partially to blame. Lack of toughness and an inability to defeat our opponent man to man. (i guess it’s harder in a zone).

virginia dog

September 11th, 2010
10:27 pm

Richt is a nice guy, and everyone knows where nice guys finish. it is time for CMR to step down and follow his calling to preach.
i am not joking… he is a good guy and coaching 90 thugs is just not suited for him. these modern athletes only understand fear and intimidation.

Andy Lanier

September 11th, 2010
10:31 pm

All this game shows is that our players need to stay out of trouble so they will be at all the practices and games so when the whistle blows they will be ready– There needs to be player leadership in the locker-room==Coaches can’t do it all!