It’s not been a good week for news out of Athens. First Rutherford Hall, then R.E.M. and the Georgia offensive line. But, as the old Southern saying goes, Thank God for Mississippi. Or perhaps not, as we’ll discuss when we check some Junkyard Mail. …
Stan the Dawg writes: I think the sports columnists had it all wrong (so what else is new?). They labeled South Carolina a “must win” for Mark Richt, but that never made any sense. Even for a coach on the hot seat, there’s no dishonor in losing to a talented, highly-ranked team. But Ole Miss is another matter. The Rebs are a truly bad team and got routed by Vandy! I think the Dawgs win easily Saturday, but what if they don’t? Is there any way Richt could survive a loss to Ole Miss?
You make a good point. This game could potentially be a lot more damaging to Richt’s job security than the South Carolina game. But it wouldn’t necessarily be an official jumping of the shark for him. If Georgia lost to the Rebels but then won out, that would mean this team had victories over Florida, Auburn and Tech, the big three of UGA rivals. Of course, it’s difficult to imagine a team that lost to Ole Miss beating all those teams. And a loss Saturday certainly would have the Bulldog Nation howling. It’s more of a must-not-lose game than a must-win game.
Jax Dawg writes: No Dawg fan will disagree that Aaron Murray is a HUGE talent at the QB position, but is he progressing as a player in his 3rd year in the system? He is still young and only a RS-Sophomore so there plenty of room for growth, but shouldn’t ball security be a higher priority for a QB in the SEC?
And Raymon is thinking along the same lines when he writes: Just wondering when will people start to question is Murray part of the problem with UGA football? Because who has Murray beat since starting at QB last year? Nobody! He is the reason we lost the 2010 Florida game, IMO. Because he could not throw and hit the side of a barn in the 1st half when our defense was playing their tail off. So if he wouldn’t have overshot the WR then we could have jumped on Florida and then we all know he threw the INT also, and again sometimes against S.C. he looked stupid. Again, the defense played good enough to win and again we could have really jumped on them however … Murray threw an INT and fumbled the ball at big parts of the game. … So I’m one that believes Mark’s time might be up but, hey, Murray hasn’t helped the man either! GO DAWGS!!!
There’s no question Aaron Murray’s sophomore season hasn’t exactly gotten off to a sizzling start, but aside from the two lapses against the Gamecocks I think he’s generally been pretty good. And I think the lapses on the offensive line have had a lot to do with the games in which he’s struggled, both last season and this year. I’m not ready to write him off by a long shot.
An anonymous Redcoat writes: I would like to start off by saying that I am a UGA Redcoat, and personally I am not fond of a lot of the new aspects of our performance this year. I was wondering what someone from the crowd thinks of it? I’ve heard reports that we cannot be heard as well from our new seats (and especially not with an opposing band sitting two sections away), and the “Georgia Bulldogs” cheer that we lead during pregame never seems to go well. What are your thoughts?
And we also hear from another Redcoat, Josh Osif, who writes: I understand that change isn’t the most comfortable feeling at such a “tradition rich” college. That being said, I and my colleagues of the 107th Redcoat Band do not appreciate the comments made last week by the Junkyard Blawg. We work very hard to put together a show that gets the crowd excited and involved. … In that article that knocked the band last week, the lack of fan support was mentioned. You won’t find any more devout fans than in the Redcoat band. And with that I ask, should the band change to our old pregame show, or should Dawg fans be better fans and adapt to change in the name of supporting their team?
I wasn’t knocking the Redcoat Band. One of my brothers was a Redcoat and I’m a fan of the Redcoats. But that doesn’t mean I have to agree with or like everything they do. I happen to think the spell-Georgia cheer works better at the end of the halftime show rather than in the pregame routine. And the “Georgia/Bulldogs” thing with the band just isn’t working. The second game it was done, the crowd was no closer to catching on and the lag time while the band members reposition themselves ruins the pace of the cheer. Howevver, I am very glad to have the band down in my end of the stadium now, though having them and the South Carolina band playing at the same time was a bit problematic. And I’m not sure if the bulk of the student section can hear them as well, which might be a problem. Overall, though, I think the new placement of the band probably is a good thing. Anyway, let’s be clear: I love the Redcoats. Ain’t nothing finer in the land!
Cleveland Williams writes: Do you really think the Georgia board and executives (Adams and McGarity) who make coaching decisions are really thinking change or is it just media hype and fan frustration?
I think the folks in charge can’t ignore media hype and fan frustration, but I’m not sure there’s any “minimum” number of wins Richt has to get this year to save his job. I think the general trend of the team’s performance and how competitive it is as the season goes on might be a bigger factor in how they evaluate Richt.
Invictus Mon writes: Got it from a VERY reliable source who has known Richt since his years before UGA that he thinks this will be Richt’s last year at UGA and not because he’s going to be fired. He thinks Richt has already had enough of all of us, and is ready to take his fortune and do more meaningful things with his life. This is something I’ve been afraid of for years. We’re going to lose the winningest coach of the last decade because we chased him off. Not because we fired him, but because we made his life so miserable he didn’t find it worthwhile to stay. Then who are we going to get? Nobody’s going to want to put up with our crap. You think Smart would leave his cush job at BAMA with uncle Saban looking after him to get thrown to the wolves here? I have it under VERY good authority as well that the only reason Muschamp did that at UT was because he knew he was on the hot seat and even though he was the coach in waiting, there was a strong feeling by the powers that be that someone else was getting that job over him anyway. The SEC is a dream destination, and UGA is a great job, but I’m not sure we’re doing ourselves any favors recruiting a quality coach by acting like a dadgum lynch mob.
Love those reliable sources everyone seems to have. I’ve heard the Richt-really-wants-to-be-a-missionary theory and I don’t buy it. I think he enjoys coaching at UGA and would be happy to be in Athens another 10 years. Whether that’s possible for any coach in today’s media/fan environment, I don’t know.
Kelly Hibbs, who apparently took umbrage at me saying West Virginia wouldn’t be a very good choice for the SEC, writes: Didn’t West Virginia beat UGA in their own backyard in the Sugar Bowl recently? That is what I thought. Way better basketball program than UGA, too. Don’t think the Dawgs could handle them on a yearly basis. UGA is an also-ran program now. Sorry.
Look, if beating Georgia in in the past six years was sole qualification for being in the SEC, then Colorado and Central Florida would merit consideration. Beating Georgia doesn’t change the fact that West Virginia was passed over by the ACC and doesn’t have much TV reach (though someone pointed out it has some following in Pittsburgh). There are other more suitable choices for a 14th team.
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