What’s your biggest concern about the 2011 Dogs?

Aaron Murray gives the Dogs hope in 2011, but what is the biggest concern? (AJC file)

Aaron Murray gives the Dogs hope in 2011, but what is the biggest concern? (AJC file)

Over at ESPN.com, Edward Aschoff took a look at the biggest reasons for hope and concern for the Georgia Bulldogs this season. As you’d expect, the return of quarterback Aaron Murray was one of the reasons for hope, along with a talented linebacker unit, which he said “could be the most athletic in the league.”

Biggest reason for concern, Aschoff says, is Georgia’s unproven offensive skill players: “The Bulldogs have a ton of offensive talent, but only Murray, wide receiver Tavarres King and tight end Orson Charles have really made any sort of impact. Those three are reliable, but the rest of the group has yet to prove themselves. The Bulldogs haven’t found that elite running back. Washaun Ealey’s future is unknown and senior Caleb King was solid this spring, but has yet to really break out. Ken Malcome and Carlton Thomas struggled with injuries this spring. Incoming freshman Isaiah Crowell will have a ton of expectations to live up to when he arrives and he will immediately be in the thick of the running back competition. At receiver, King will be the go-to-guy, but after him there is a cloud of uncertainty. Marlon Brown seemed to come along at times this spring, but was inconsistent. Rantavious Wooten might be the most athletic receiver, but he, too, was inconsistent this spring and didn’t play in Georgia’s spring game. The rest of Georgia’s group hardly has any experience.”

Do you agree that the offensive skill players are the biggest reason for concern? Bigger than the unsettled secondary, where one of the safety positions is still a big question mark? Bigger than the reshuffling of an already suspect offensive line after the injury of Trinton Sturdivant?

What makes you the most nervous about the 2011 Dogs?

NEIGHBORHOOD LEGEND

The only reason I was surprised by the news this week that Danny Birchmore was being inducted into the Georgia Tennis Hall of Fame was because I’d just assumed he was already in it.

Birchmore, who lettered on the Georgia men’s tennis team 1970-73, was the first Bulldog to receive All-America honors when he was selected in 1971, and he repeated as an All-American in 1972 in addition to earning four first team All-SEC awards. In 1969, he won the U.S. boys 18 clay court singles title, upsetting Jimmy Connors in the quarterfinals. He was part of that cadre of Athens tennis kids (including future UGA athletic director Greg McGarity) shepherded by the great Dan Magill.

I grew up living around the corner from Danny, whose dad is Fred Birchmore, a legendary figure in Athens known for riding a bicycle around the world as a young man and building a giant stone wall in his 70s. Danny is two years older than me but he and I were in Boy Scouts together (Troop 4’s Buffalo Patrol) and we usually had our patrol meetings at his “Happy Hollow” home, where I spent many an hour tramping through his “backyard” (known to local kids as Birchmore’s Woods and now a part of Athens’ Memorial Park).

Danny easily could have been an intimidating presence to other kids since he was a brilliant student (he’s now a doctor in Nashville and teaches at Vanderbilt), a tremendous athlete and just about the perfect Boy Scout. But on top of all that, Danny was one of the nicest, most humble guys you could ever meet.

I was sitting beside him at Camp Rainey Mountain in North Georgia the night he was tapped for the prestigious Order of the Arrow and I remember how thrilled the rest of us from Troop 4 were for him. I feel the same way about his latest honor.

Give it up for Danny Birchmore, a damn good Dawg!

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— Bill King, Junkyard Blawg

389 comments Add your comment

Otis My Man

May 7th, 2011
11:59 pm

We Need OTIS FOR UGA!!!! Check out his FB page!!! Russ aint cuttin’ it.

Otis My Man

May 8th, 2011
12:03 am

ugab– it was coaching. We did a great job of coaching “down” our talent… Times have changed and there is new light!!!! Remember when CMR came in and won our first SEC Championship in 20 years?? Hang on cuz we will win a National Championship within the next 2 years!!!!! Mark it down now!!! AU did it and we are much deeper than they where!

Thomas Brown

May 8th, 2011
12:51 am

The biggest concern, of course, is that our coaching staff – once considered the 4th best in the nation – now finds itself by stark contrast # 22 in the nation over the last 5 years with 21 Losses, averaging more than 4 + Losses a season over the last 5 years, and will not improve upon these numbers of the last 5 years this season, either.

PHIL

May 8th, 2011
2:51 am

I have several areas of concern.

1. Is the O line, just pick a topic within that unit
2. Is that the AJC continues to allow morons like Tide Roll and ugaclassof2004 to post on a public blog
3. Is the infinite number of “fans” who continue to say coaches being pass happy and not running the football enough. If the O line and running backs were worth a crap we would NEVER pass. They suck, we had AJ Green and those are the reasons we pass.
4. I am concerned that Bill will never have an original topic for an article and that he can’t write one at all without help from ESPN, his brother or his buddy who has “been a fan forever” and is still obviously lost on the game of football.

5. And last but not least I am concerned about AltamahaDawg trying to reason with the idiots here by using rationality. Like explaining the QB’s role in the running game by making calls at the line to “Fans” who wouldn’t know a football from a flying saucer.

Still@theBAR

May 8th, 2011
3:45 am

Murray needs to TRY Pro Active. Man his face looks like 12 miles of Gravel road. He better hope he gets NFL money because that is the only way he can get a STAFFORD type looking girlfriend.

7576DAWG

May 8th, 2011
4:20 am

My biggest concern will be the offensive line Buy, just as uncertain is can Bobo show he can finish the drill in the 3rd and 4th quarters.

Thomas Brown

May 8th, 2011
5:05 am

Last Five (5) Years :

56-9 Ohio State
56-12 Florida
61-5 Boise State
55-10 TCU
54-15 Oklahoma
52-16 Virginia Tech
51-14 Southern California
50-15 LSU
50-15 Texas
50-15 BYU
50-15 Utah
49-16 Wisconsin
49-16 West Virginia
49-18 Alabama on the field
48-16 Oregon
48-19 Missouri
47-18 Penn State
46-18 Auburn
46-22 Hawaii
45-20 Cincinnati
45-21 Boston College
45-20 Texas Tech
44-21 Georgia Mark Richt last entire 5 years # 23 won/lost # 23

tater tot

May 8th, 2011
5:44 am

Still@theBAR
May 8th, 2011
3:45 am

Murray needs to TRY Pro Active. Man his face looks like 12 miles of Gravel road. He better hope he gets NFL money because that is the only way he can get a STAFFORD type looking girlfriend.

Boy, You sure funny. hehe

gary

May 8th, 2011
6:04 am

I’ve seen only one entry address our real concern, our defense. They sucked in 09 an 10. We may score some points, but we can’t stop anybody. The majority of the starting defense is returning and that is a big cause for concern!!!!!

Eat and Tweet

May 8th, 2011
6:29 am

Murray needs to lay off on the fried foods,chocolate and pepsi. Face is all broke out.

lizard man

May 8th, 2011
6:34 am

one of my concerns is the people that are above Richt and his boss———–they must be crazy——Richt has been at Georgia for 10 years and has not won the Championship yet————so my guess is —-he will never do it—-after all the money and talent he has had——–i just dont think he has the backbone for it———he was an offensive coordinator at Florida State (an ACC team)——and then he pops up at UGA———I think UGA should have gotten Mushchamp———sp?——somebody down there needs to go have their brain checked out for egoitis——-somebody in Athens thinks they know what they are doing but they dont———-they may have a clue but they dont have the balls to step up and lay down the law———-just my opinon—I’m just sayin———–

lizard man

May 8th, 2011
6:42 am

another way to put it is—with the stats—–Richt is batting 50%——-he has won alot of games but he has lost about the same amount——-stats dont lie——he may be batting 56 or 59% but all the same—-it aint enough in one year to go to the Natl game to win it all is all i am saying———-so somebody in Athens needs to check themselves in to Bellvue and get examined for wishi was idis. Never Mind—-somebody please step up and help UGA—–they always feel sorry for themselves and just cant seem to get out on the field and hit somebody——-boo hoo hoo hoo——it s rough trying to be a Georgia fan this decade———–God help us —cause the quack that runs the show in Athens is wickity wackity boom boom.

Dawggone

May 8th, 2011
7:24 am

OL is the biggest concern for me but WR is a close second. What happened to Brown and Wooten? We heard about all of that talent but nothing has come from it! Then we need to talk about safety and where do you start after watching them give up BIG play after BIG play. They were just awful last year and the best athlete moved to LB. I have not seen anyone back there in years that was a good SEC player. That being said I love my Dawgs and hope we turn it around this year with hard work and attitude!

chazzo

May 8th, 2011
7:32 am

Lizard Man,

Richt is 90 Ws 27 Ls, 3rd best among active coaches. That is 76.9%. In the last 5 years according to “Thomas Brown” in this thread: 44-21. That’s 67.7%. Last year was his first losing season in 10 years (6-7). He is definitely not batting .500 .

I think he deserves a chance to turn it around. I think he has taken proper measures. Everyone jumped all over me when I suggested that replacing Martinez may be smart but that there would be an adjustment period. Brand new coach with a brand new scheme and a brand new staff and somehow we thought the D was going to rock last year? Funny thing, though, it was better.

Championships shouldn’t really be the measure of a good coach until there is a playoff system. Championships in general are a somewhat dubious until there is a playoff system.

Jury is out on Muschamp and Weis. They are inheriting a mess. I hope Muschamp does well (exceptin’ in Jax). It is always good to see a young HC succeed, especially one from UGA.

Greg B.

May 8th, 2011
7:45 am

More concerned about the inconsistent offensive playcalling than anything. Oklahoma State is one that sticks out, and there have been numerous more. We get that corrected we have a chance.

It Ain't Rocket Science

May 8th, 2011
7:51 am

T. Brown,

Is that all you do is post records and think they actually provide something meaningful. Like I told you on the other post. Statistics can be manipulated anyway you want. In the science I worked in, our saying was, if you need proof of something or need to back up your theory, just make up a list of statistics and massage them to fit your theory. A list is the weakest kind of statistical analysis because it shows no cause and effect. It is like comparing apples and oranges in this case unjless all of the teams you have listed have all played the same teams and all played each other. In other words Thomas, what you have there is a little less useful than what you would pick up in a cow pasture. Understand now?

It Ain't Rocket Science

May 8th, 2011
8:13 am

Otto,

That is about the fifth or sixth different name you have used on UGA blogs and posted the same thing exactly. Do you think you and ole Thomas could get together and post something meaningful and something with a little substance. Don’t you two have a sister or something you could trade each other so you could have dates and leave the blogs to the big boys with something intelligent to say. Children really should stay on kiddie blogs.

Falcondawg

May 8th, 2011
8:17 am

concerns? UNDERACHIEVING again with top 10 recruiting class? Looking for more EXCITEMENT from players and coache-Pride?. But mostly im concerened about the lack of DISCIPLINE on our team. Unnecessary personal fouls, penalties, players getting in trouble, etc. I think we have the potential assets to become a great football team, but until we infuse some discipline into the program, we may continue to be mediocre. This is a big year for Richt and that is motivation in itself. We will know where we stand after the first 2 games! 5 sec teams have won the national championship in the last 20 years, and one of those is NOT UGA. I say its past time for us to show em who the BIG DAWG is. UGA gets off to a good start at 2-0 (HUGE), beats Florida, loses a couple close games, wins a BCS bowl game, and ends up in top 10. Oh and i almost forgot….Richt will remain COACH! GO DAWGS!

Falcondawg

May 8th, 2011
8:28 am

CHAZZO… I agree there needs to be a playoff in college football like every other sport in the universe. Too much greed i suppose. eventually there will be and we will look back and say “what the Heck were we thinking”. I have to admit that i would have LOVED for the NFL to go with a BCS format this past year because my FALCONS would have won the NFC and been in the super bowl!! No need to play the PACKERS right??? right? I wish! Just one of a million examples of why there should be a playoff system. GO DAWGS!

AltamahaDawg

May 8th, 2011
8:30 am

Phil, thanks a lot, that coffee up my nose is going to bother me all day.

jimmy campagna

May 8th, 2011
8:42 am

Biggest concern: coaching, specifically the consistent inability to have the team ready to play early in the season. There’s no SE Louisiana this year. Come out of the blocks 0-2 and the season is done, along with Richt. He can’t get it done any more.

JJ

May 8th, 2011
8:46 am

Why is this even a question? The defense was beyond atrocious last year. It flat out sucked as bad as any I can remember. And this with a bunch of NFL caliber talent. If it doesn’t improve dramatically this year, we’re about to see major changes in this program, and rightfully so.

It Ain't Rocket Science

May 8th, 2011
8:59 am

Almost anyway you say it, in order for UGA to be really good this year, the big boys on both sides of the line have to be better. I have read where the strength and conditioning is much improved and that could very well be the key, since we never seemed to have much left come the fourth quarter last year. I think the D line will be most improved and to me that’s not going to be the problem area this year. The O line worries me, not only due to past performance but also because they are a little thin there. I hope they can avoid any major injuries other than the one we have already had. If the O line comes to the game, the running game will take off and the team will score the points it needs. The passing game will take a few games to get it all together with the receivers that are new or haven’t played a great deal. If the running game can come around with the O line, we can control the clock and we will need to do that. If the D clicks the way it should, we will have a fair amount of 3 and outs, so the offense has got to control the game as much as possible and not have the defensae out there 70% of the time.

It Ain't Rocket Science

May 8th, 2011
9:00 am

Anybody out there have a typist for sale. My fingers will not go where I tell them to go. At 62, you would think I could at least type, LOL.

fat white lump

May 8th, 2011
9:22 am

my concern is Murrays hair cut!!!

It Ain't Rocket Science

May 8th, 2011
9:40 am

Betcha, Murray could wear a mohawk and if he deoesn’t have the support he needs from the line, It will not make a bit of difference. He can go blad as far as I am concerned as long as UGA wins. Football is full of the big uglies, LOL.

GO DAWGS

BOSS GATOR

May 8th, 2011
9:43 am

10/29/11…..Jacksonville….World’s Largest Annual Outdoor Ass Kicking…..Oh what fun !!….. We’re going to have complimentary crying towels at the exits for all you Red Panties……The .Party’s On…..Your BOSS………….

It Ain't Rocket Science

May 8th, 2011
9:51 am

Hey Boss,

think you can field a team if they do a drug test two days before the game? Go play with your reptiles down in the swamp and prepare to get you butt whipped in Jax. this year. Got some orange and blue crying towels for a cheap price for you. Even put a picture of the weed on them so your team can identify them. Hard to do that with glazed eyes.

Walt

May 8th, 2011
9:54 am

My concern is the QB.

We will only win as many games as QB plays well.

As the QB goes in the SEC, so goes the team.

Need QB to step up against the most important games like Florida and South Carolina, games like Louisiana Lafayette, Idaho State, and Vanderbilt, they just pad the stats, and make Bobo’s offensive stats look better, but arn’t the true indication of the QB’s ability.

Bobo will be measured this year by how the offense does against winning teams.

Walt

May 8th, 2011
9:57 am

Look at Newton last season, McElroy at Alabama, Tebow at Florida, takes solid QB play against the good teams, like Green, Stafford and DJ in the glory years at Georgia.

It Ain't Rocket Science

May 8th, 2011
9:59 am

Agree to a certain extent Walt, but it still takes 11 people on the offense to win. If he gets protection, then he can do his job well enough. Everything starts with the guys up front. No holes, no running game. No pass protection, the QB scrambles for his life and makes mistakes.
For sure Bobo’s job and all of the offense will be easier if that all happens.

This Dawg Won't Hunt

May 8th, 2011
10:04 am

This is for “This Dawg Want Hunt” who clearly doesn’t know his “wants” from his “won’ts”. Maybe he’s illiterate. But I digress.

My biggest concerns for this years team are coaching and coaching again and Murray’s decision making. If we could improve all three of those, we should be hunky-dory. But I’m not expecting it to happen.

powerhouse?

May 8th, 2011
10:23 am

dogs better be careful changing coaches. Fired Butts and look what happened.
VD left and look….
Bill, did you really predict the dogs will lose six? Wow!

savannadawg

May 8th, 2011
10:28 am

The crux of it all. CMR wants to have a “PRO” style offense and defense at UGA. But to have this, one has too have the talent within the system to do it. And frankly we do not. We have the talent to win college football games, ALL of them imo. But the fact that CMR specifically, and maybe others want to look “PRETTY” doing it, leads to self destruction and misguided aspirations. How many times do we hear, ” We just didn’t make enough plays!” What a crock of spam that line has gotten over the years. I will say it “Just one more time” The harder we practice the luckier we get! as said by one Erskine Russell. You cannot GATA if you never do getta after it. CMR needs to get back to the KISS principle, “KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID”, the system is too complicted for alot of the kids too catch on. hince it takes one to two years before we see a kid blossom, and then its time for a changeover again. And this goes on and on, hence the lack of continuity alot of the time. AND YES, i know this type of offense has a tendency to be very explosive, but it has never been consistent at UGA because of the defenses in the SEC. It work “GREAT” at FSU because that league back then had no defenses. So. So. So. I don’t know what is more concerning too me at this point. We have the potential to be great. But that is every year! Will we?

Mobile Dawg

May 8th, 2011
10:33 am

The ingredient we’ve been missing for quite some time, “Leadership”, on all fronts. McGarity has begun to set the example of what it takes to be a Leader, let’s hope others catch on.

Beast from the East

May 8th, 2011
10:33 am

I think the biggest concerns should be the o-line and the secondary. If UGA gets good o-line play then the offense should be pretty good. They’ll need some new faces to step up in the skill positions (WR and RB), but with good blocking that should really help. The secondary could be a big problem, but a solid front 7 could help those guys out a lot. Most teams, including my Gators, have a number of questions heading into this season, so don’t feel alone, Dawgs.

savannadawg

May 8th, 2011
10:43 am

One more thing. I worry about CMR being able to project the images he sees in his mind too his coaches and his players. Is he a strong enough task master to get this or any football team to the “EXCELLENT” level. He doesn’t need to necessarily “demand” excellence from the play of his players, but he damn sure better have their respect, or we will never win a championship. I was very encouraged after the spring game. Lets hope it carries over to this coming year.

1eyedJack

May 8th, 2011
10:44 am

As of this morning my biggest concern is will all the games be televised and will I be able to see them all. Can’t wait. As a grown man it’s like a kid waiting for Christmas.

For all you muthas out there (Tech fans) I know it sucks.

Dawg fans happy mother’s day.

Snoop Dawg

May 8th, 2011
10:52 am

Snoop Dawg’s biggest three worries in order: head coach, offensive coordinator, coaching in general. The players will win or lose as they are led and coached by Richt and Co. The coaches need to be held accountable for once if this season doesn’t get us the SEC championship, to include beating Florida for the third time in 25 years. Most kids in college don’t even remember UGA ever beating Florida. Florida students think of UGA as we think of Vanderbilt. Yet, we pay Richt a cool $3M per year to lose every year to make us cellar dwellers and the laughing stock for the entire SEC. They are laughing at us every day. Wake up!

FanSince59

May 8th, 2011
11:08 am

Biggest concern: overpaid Mark Richt. Hopefully, he won’t be a “concern” next year.

Whatta record

May 8th, 2011
11:13 am

There were a lot of things for the dawgs to celebrate this year. Let’s see…

1. A drunken, whoring athletic director with red panties in his lap.

2. Twelve players arrested. And 41% of UGA football players are arrested during their time at UGA.

3. A player suspended for violating NCAA rules.

4. Winning the Fulmer Cup for the most players arrested.

5. Winning the title of #1 party school (i.e., the most drunken student body in the USA).

6. A sleazy assistant coach who razzes opposing players, unethical coaching conduct in violation of NCAA rules.

7. A super sleazy head coach who thinks he’s a saint, but recruits thug wannabes, gangbangers, and illiterate morons.

8. A 6-7 record despite having a team full of 4- and 5-star recruits.

That’s really something to be proud of!

Ldawg

May 8th, 2011
11:14 am

Crowell could be the best back in the country but if our o-line can’t block for him he is nothing!!! I’m ready for Boise state… Go dawgs!!!!

Gdawg in Yankee-Land

May 8th, 2011
11:29 am

Lack of a permanent mascot. With all do respect to Russ, the spends way to much time licking his butt, and not enough time barking at the opposing team.

Kendawg

May 8th, 2011
12:11 pm

My biggest concern is the offensive line. The last two years they couldn’t block a team of grandmothers. What makes us think they will be any better in 2011?

Ju Ju

May 8th, 2011
12:14 pm

Love the O-Line. They protected Joe Cox perfectly, less than 10 sacks and got 175 rushing per game in the Cox era. Same oline struggled with Murray, kid don’t audible like Cox did, and as Bobo said, Murray holds on to the ball too long and takes 3x more sacks than Cox did with the same o line. Hopefully Murray will improve in run audibles/reading defenses better & quicker decision making on passing plays. All relate to QB defensive recognition.

Ju Ju

May 8th, 2011
12:16 pm

Crowell could do for the rush offense what Lattimore did for South Carolinas. Carolina looked terrible 2 years ago, but looked much better with a better rb past season.

Ju Ju

May 8th, 2011
12:24 pm

Same O-Line and running backs dropped from:
–3rd in SEC in rushing against ranked teams, and #1 in sacks in 2009 with leader Joe Cox at QB
–1th in SEC in rushing against ranked teams, and #11 in sacks in 2010 with leader Murray at QB.

Wow, the difference 1 player can make at QB is big on the running game.

Ju Ju

May 8th, 2011
12:25 pm

3rd ro 11 in sec rushing aganst ranked teams

1st to 11th in sacks against ranked teams.

Murray ain’t no joe Cox, that for sure.

Eat and Tweet

May 8th, 2011
12:27 pm

In the photo of Murray above he just stated “Gollllleeee Coach Bobo I thought the draw play on 3rd and long would have gotten us a first down for sure”.

Bawbie

May 8th, 2011
12:29 pm

Fire Dave Perno!