Dominating Dogs defense makes up for lackluster offense

The Dogs' John Jenkins slams Ladarius Perkins to the ground on a day when the Georgia defense dominated. (Brant Sanderlin / AJC)

The Dogs' John Jenkins slams Ladarius Perkins to the ground on a day when the Georgia defense dominated. (Brant Sanderlin / AJC)

It’s beginning to look like if you want to see the Georgia Bulldogs offense in action, you better catch the first half, because judging by the past two games they’re taking off most of the third and fourth quarters.

Fortunately, for the Dogs, their defense is playing a full four quarters and Saturday against Mississippi State the D turned in a dominating performance, holding the Maroon Bulldogs to a measly 56 yards on the ground, with an average of only 1.6 yards per carry, and letting Dan Mullen’s vaunted spread option convert only 27 percent of its third-down tries. Georgia also had five sacks on the day.

The only thing the D didn’t do was score, and they likely could have if they’d held on to several almost-interceptions that were dropped. As it was, they did manage to snag two picks.

Still, there’s one overwhelming conclusion that you have to take from a game where Georgia threw three interceptions (one a pick 6), had almost no offense in the third quarter, muffed two field goal attempts and yet still won the game by 14 points:

Mississippi State isn’t very good.

The Georgia offense actually looked pretty decent in the first half, though it only really needed to launch one long, sustained drive, getting the ball in good field positions a couple of other times through a nice Brandon Boykin punt return and another shanked MSU punt.

Isaiah Crowell had 104 yards on 22 carries, most of it in the first half and had another very impressive, weaving touchdown run canceled when it was ruled he had stepped on the sideline.

Aaron Murray completed 13 of 25 passes for 160 yards and two touchdowns, again mostly in the first half. But besides having three picks on the day, Murray and the Georgia offense were largely ineffective after halftime. At least some of the blame had to go to the offensive line, which had a very lackluster day.

Crowell was spelled a good bit by Carlton Thomas (surprisingly effective) and Richard Samuel (mostly not), and the freshman back seemed more comfortable running out of the spread formation that Georgia used more extensively in the first half than the tight I-formation the Dogs hunkered down in for most of the last two quarters.

The frustration of the second half for Georgia fans was summed up by a third-and-inches play in the third quarter when the Dogs went with Samuel and somehow came up short. And then when Georgia again got the ball at the MSU 14, couldn’t get 10 yards, and rather than go for a fourth-and-short play brought in the still-troubled field goal unit, which couldn’t even get the kick off. Boos were heard coming from the Georgia stands.

Thank goodness one of Georgia’s units played up to its capabilities.

Still, it seems churlish to grumble too much after the Dogs won another conference game. Yes, the offense and special teams have a long way to go, but the Georgia defense seems to be for real.

And that’s definitely worth celebrating.

Feel free to share your own views of Georgia’s win over MSU.

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296 comments Add your comment

GT is a 4th rate high school team

October 1st, 2011
9:46 pm

Sorry to say but Murray appears to have been really weak in the second half of most games, counting last year’s. I wonder if he is just getting tired easy. We may need to consider Mason on the third quarter and if he cannot do it give Murray the fourth quarter after resting.

MarineDog

October 1st, 2011
9:47 pm

Still@theBar, I’m still confused on that call.

DawgVoiceofReason

October 1st, 2011
9:54 pm

Welcome to the hot spot for whiners. You have Dawg haters (I hesitate to call them fans of other teams; if they were they would be reading about their teams) desperate to point out any flaw along with “Dawg fans” who also are not content with mere victory. Oh no, they also roll around in the garbage of negativity and complaints. Its not so much that you find problems, its the way you present them. You are frankly, disgusting. Not naming any names, but if the shoe fits, wear it.

Personally, I’ll take a win with a dominant defense and some explosive skill players on offense any time. Al Davis said it best, “Just win, baby!”.

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
9:55 pm

marine it makes no rational sense. I still don’t understand the weak explanation either. i guess they wanted to keep the gators in it. That didn’t work cause now Brantley is hurt.

ADMan

October 1st, 2011
9:55 pm

Still@theBAR….you still watching this azz kicking that Bama is laying on your gay-tors?….If Weis is such a great coach how come he couldn’t win at N. Dame where he had the best of everything…..he’s average at best….and gets all of the attention he does because of his weight……..I agree with you Flat Tire…If you can’t pick up forth and inches with Crowell then you send a bad message to the rest of your team….when you get a team down you got to rip their heart out and show it to them every chance you get!

DawgVoiceofReason

October 1st, 2011
9:57 pm

Still@thebar,

I long suspected you were inebriated when you make most of your comments. Your observation about Auburn not scoring a touchdown confirms it. The tv replays clearly showed that the Auburn player recovered the ball while still in the endzone. Put down the drinks and sober up.

LagDawg

October 1st, 2011
9:57 pm

Bobo is a liability and needs to go. His play calling is awful and it is hurting the team in the second half. UGA needs to turn it on for all four quarters every game. Defense looks solid, but I am concerned about the pass defense come next week. Must keep pressure on the QB the entire game and we need to jam the big WRs. It will be a big challange.

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
9:58 pm

ADMan I an not a Gator you moron. Notre Dame has difficult Admission standards for their Student athletes not like SEC teams.

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
10:00 pm

How is the Ole Miss game going?

@ Still@thebar

October 1st, 2011
10:03 pm

“Weis is going to EAT Grantham on and Off the field. look what he is doing to BAMA.”

Yea thats a scary offense.

just a fan

October 1st, 2011
10:05 pm

@ Still@theBAR

Even if they gave SC 2 seconds back on the clock they(SC) had NO time outs and not enough time to stop the clock by grounding the ball they lost good for UGA we just have to continue to win our games and need SC to lose one more.

Flat Tire on I-95 in Jacksonville

October 1st, 2011
10:07 pm

ADMan

the 4th and inches today is called momentum

when you have the opportunity to put your enemy away you do it. You dont let them stay in the game

I still scatch my head as to why we dont run Crowell more to the outside especially Carlton Thomas.
Crowell’s biggest runs this year have been to the outside

Yes I know you have to run up the middle to keep them honest but why more runs up the middle instead of the outside where both Crowell and Thomas have been more successful

ADMan

October 1st, 2011
10:08 pm

Stanford wins with difficult admissions….sounds to me like its the coaches fault…Still@theBAR the more you post on this blog the dumber you sound.Its clear that you don’t know sh-t about college football.

just a fan

October 1st, 2011
10:08 pm

I wonder why they do not try to do more screens or swing passes to IC and get him the ball in space that is when he is at his best

The long goodbye

October 1st, 2011
10:09 pm

Tennessee 45, Georgia 24

The descent into despair, oblivion, and irrelevancy continues. :-)

whatever

October 1st, 2011
10:09 pm

Just like with a pathetic Ole Missy team (who got beat by Vandy 30-7) – UGA beats another very weak team that nearly got beat by Lossie Tech last week. So what has UGA proved in the last 3 weeks?? NOTHING – they seem to beat only the weakling teams like Coastal Carolina, Ole Missy, and a very bad Missy State team. Too bad UGA doesn’t play LSU or Alabama.

Fire Mark Richt

October 1st, 2011
10:12 pm

Look, we’re not a great team by any stretch, and mediocre Mark Richt is still our coach, but a win is a win. Put away Miss. St.? I’m thrilled we managed to beat them at all. Before the season started most of us would have put this one in the loss column.

just a fan

October 1st, 2011
10:12 pm

Also for all of yall wanting to start HM over AM if we did that it wold be our 3rd year in a row with a first year starting QB and you think we would be better than we are now share whatever you are smoking. David Greene in his first year was only 8-4, DJ who played a lot as a backup went 10-2 as a first year starter but like I said he got pleny of playing time before that. We shouldn’t be happy AM is making these mistakes but replacing him is not the answer. IMHO

Tampa Dawg

October 1st, 2011
10:13 pm

SSigator? SSigator? SSigator! Where you at boy? Start talkin’ that smack now. Your Lizards are getting’ spanked. Now go crawl in your hole you moron.
PS-Thanks Auburn!
Go Dawgs!

ADMan

October 1st, 2011
10:19 pm

Did everybody see that?….Charlie Weis is sitting on his fat azz on the sideline during the game….what a great coach and team motivator he is….LOLOLOLOL

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
10:22 pm

ADMan Stanford won last year. YOU ARE THE F KING MORON.
2010……………….12-1
2009………………..8-5
2008………………..5-7
2007………………..4-8
2006……………….1-11
2005……………….5-6
2004……………….4-7
2003………………..4-7
2002……………….2-9

You have no idea what you are talking about ADMan. Moron.

intheknow

October 1st, 2011
10:25 pm

South Carolina has to be the most over hyped, over rated team in resent history…they are terrible. Can’t believe Georgia handed the game to them a few weeks back.

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
10:31 pm

Come on ADMan tell me something. Prove you know something. Stanford wins and places very good in the Presidents Cup because of their women’s sports more than anything. You are a DAWG you should know about your women’s teams being the ONLY real Champions at a School. GYM Dawgs are #1. LMAO

ADMan

October 1st, 2011
10:32 pm

Still@theBAR…we’re all sitting here laughing at how stupid you are. You just don’t get it do you? Bet you got held back a year in school too…right? You actually think Weis is a great OC…Go ask the Kansas City Chiefs how good he is….or the AD at N. Dame…..LOLLOLLOL……..How’s that Sponge Bob movie coming?LOLLOLLOL

SenoiaDawgs

October 1st, 2011
10:32 pm

Look folks you could put Luck, Brady or Manning at QB for UGA right now and playing behind that O-line and running Bozo’s plays they would do no better than Murray.

The O-Line has to figure out pass blocking and Bozo has to pull his head from where the sun don’t shine. It blows my mind has an O-coordinator constantly tries to run the stuff that doesn’t work and hasn’t all year. Run what works until they stop it.

Go DAWGS!!!!!

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
10:35 pm

ADMan You are the one that doesn’t know crap. you think ANYBODY in the US fears playing against BOBO? Weis has a resume. Bobo is a High School coach the problem is Richt is too stupid to know it.

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
10:40 pm

the Gators had the muffed punt. BAMA is LUCKY to get that back.

daddydog

October 1st, 2011
10:46 pm

First off, it was great to see a touchdown on the first drive. Defense great the whole game. Mitchell is real deal!
Crowell is the key to offense. He must stay healthy. When MSU took him away in 2nd half, offense was impotent.
If Murray will not do better job managing game, give someone else a chance. Offense must quit giving points away.
I hope DBs practice catching balls this week. Great coverage tho.

hop

October 1st, 2011
10:50 pm

it is high time for bobo/richt to find out if HUDSON is the answer,since he has been performing at a very high in the fall practices.
it was stated in the post game report that the dawgs will look at him in future games.

murray has not won a big game yet and our three wins have been with very average teams and we lost to decent.

the defense is saving our bacon and they will keep us in any game by keeping the scores low unless the special team and offense as well alloe opposing teams score.

the tennesse game will say much about the rest of the year.

ADMan

October 1st, 2011
10:54 pm

I’m sorry Still@theBAR….I don’t rember saying I liked Bobo….your making things up aren’t you?Show me where I said that ….What a punk you are…a real badass….always trying to prove to everyone you know everything…even if you have to make things up….bet you don’t have many friends do you?…Sad, we all think your just full of sh_t…..I’m tried of messing with you tonight…your too easy….a real simpleton…..LOLLOLLOL

Tampa Dawg

October 1st, 2011
11:05 pm

All you Lizards, Bama just scored again. Go Gaytors! This is a great day!

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
11:10 pm

Tampa and that is the only UGA can make it to the SEC CG. You really think the Dawgs got anything for Bama or LSU?

Magnolia Dawgg

October 1st, 2011
11:14 pm

Good win Coach Richt gotta crawl before u walk…………..Next week we run at wacky topp. ohh thx bama and auburn i never new the state of bama was beneficial until today

Tampa Dawg

October 1st, 2011
11:17 pm

After watching the Rays win the wildcard and my Braves lose the wildcard. ANYTHING is possible. Oh wait… Bama just scored again. WOW! how does your weak gaytor announcer say it… “Ohhhhh Myyyyyy” Bwwahahahahahahaha!

Hairy Perry

October 1st, 2011
11:18 pm

Guys we have no right to talk smack about the gators. Ya’ll sound like Tech fans.

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
11:20 pm

Is that the Dawgs v Boise St game? No that is Bama beating some pathetic SEC east team.

Hairy Perry

October 1st, 2011
11:21 pm

Tennessee will be very interesting.

Magnolia Dawgg

October 1st, 2011
11:23 pm

ive never seen florida totally collapse like this…… amazing, GoDawgs

Still@theBARandeveryonewantsmetoleave!

October 1st, 2011
11:24 pm

Hairy Perry

October 1st, 2011
11:26 pm

Florida is in big trouble, Freshman quater back for the rest of the year? Could happen to anybody.

Einstein

October 1st, 2011
11:26 pm

We’re going to beat Tennessee. It’ll be like last season. 41-14. Maybe not that dominating but we’ll win the game. Tennessee can’t run the ball and our defensive secondary is one of the best in the SEC.

kerryb

October 1st, 2011
11:27 pm

I think UGA now has probably the 3rd best defense in the SEC now behind Bama and LSU.

Hairy Perry

October 1st, 2011
11:28 pm

Gents, even if we somehow stumble into Atlanta, I don’t see us beating LSU or Bama. It might be better not to go with the beating we could take.

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
11:29 pm

kerryb
can you give me some of what you are taking?

Einstein

October 1st, 2011
11:29 pm

Florida sucks!

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
11:30 pm

Hairy that would take all the fun out of the DAWGS running their mouths about how they are back and Richt gets a 5ye extension.

Einstein

October 1st, 2011
11:31 pm

Who knows what could happen? We can beat LSU, I don’t know about Bama. Bama is just tough as nails. But I believe we could take LSU, I really, really do. Bama not so much.

Hairy Perry

October 1st, 2011
11:31 pm

Am I the only one concerned about Aaron Murry, He looks like he’s getting worse!

kerryb

October 1st, 2011
11:31 pm

Gary Danielson just said he now likes Georgia in the east and believes that they are in the driver’s seat.

Still@theBAR

October 1st, 2011
11:32 pm

einstein and the DAWGS are what then? Boise St did the same to the Dawgs Bama is doing to the Gators.