Richt’s aggressive stance against Vols likely to pay dividends later

Aaron Murray was pleased the Dogs had earned their head coach's trust. (Associated Press)

Aaron Murray was pleased the Dogs had earned their head coach's trust. (Associated Press)

A few more thoughts about Georgia’s win over Tennessee in Knoxville …

There was a lot of talk after the game about Mark Richt’s more aggressive approach in the first half, when Georgia went for it three times on fourth-and-short yardage. That ran counter to the coach’s stance several times earlier in the season when he had declined to go for it on fourth (including twice against Mississippi State), peevishly answering his players’ complaints about it by saying that if you want to make a first down, you do it in the first three tries.

Richt obviously rethought that view this past week. “I wasn’t in the mood to go for it on fourth down last week,” he said, because he “didn’t like what we had prepared.” But in the week before playing the Vols, he said, “we did a good job of putting a plan together. I had more confidence in what the offensive staff put together, so I was more decisive with what to do because I had more faith in what we were doing and how we were going about it.”

You get the idea that maybe the head coach was a bit more involved in the offensive game planning last week.

The results weren’t so much evident on the scoreboard, as the Dogs didn’t manage to score touchdowns on the drives kept alive by Richt going for it on fourth down. But it probably paid off big-time with his players. As Aaron Murray put it: “It showed that he trusted us.”

That could pay dividends down the road. …

Mike Bobo deserves both bouquets and brickbats, as my junior high school newspaper used to say, for his playcalling Saturday night. He had Murray mix up short passes and the long ball, and that call to have it thrown to Malcolm Mitchell downfield when the Dogs were backed up on their own 7 was masterful and resulted in the game’s biggest play. But Bobo going all ultra-conservative again in the fourth quarter frustrated even his boss, who said he wished they’d handled it differently after Georgia got the ball back with just over 8 minutes and only burned a couple of minutes, going three-and-out playing it safe on the ground. That “pretty much put more pressure on the defense there,” Richt said. “If we’re in that situation again, we’d better be able to put it away.”

No arguments there, coach. …

Despite several holding calls, the Dogs’ reshuffled offensive line did a better job Saturday and the result was no sacks and no interceptions thrown by Murray. Let’s hope that progression continues. …

The showdown between what was then the nation’s No. 1 team at converting third downs (Tennessee) and the No. 2 team at defending them (Georgia) definitely went to the Dogs. The Vols had been converting 62.1 percent of the time, but against UGA they were only four-for-13 (30.8 percent). …

Speaking of tough defense, the third quarter was a jewel, with the Vols limited to 11 yards of offense. …

The Bulldogs radio network guys had a tough time picking a player of the game until they took a look at the stats, where Mike Gilliard again had a standout performance. He led the team with 12 tackles, a sack, a forced fumble and a broken up pass. Hard to do any better than that. …

Finally, amid all the talk about the schedule having Georgia in the “driver’s seat” in the SEC East, it’s good to hear Murray keeping things in perspective. “We’ve got to keep chugging,” he said. With South Carolina owning the tie-breaker against the Dogs, “We’re still not in control right now of our own destiny. We can’t worry about that. We have to worry about Vanderbilt next week and continue to get wins.”

Well said.

I’ll be off for the next couple of days but the Junkyard Blawg will return Thursday. In the meantime, if there’s an issue you’d like to raise or you have a question for the Blawg, send it to junkyardblawg@gmail.com.

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665 comments Add your comment

GT Joe

October 10th, 2011
2:26 pm

old news ticketmaster

Ticketmaster

October 10th, 2011
2:28 pm

I don’t really think that Vandy will beat Georgia, but I do believe that Vandy is better than Tennessee.

Logic

October 10th, 2011
2:28 pm

Let me use a little UGA fan logic here….

UT missed a field goal and had an extra point blocked…that’s 4 points. UT “gave” UGA a touchdown when it snapped the ball over Bray’s head and the punter shanked a punt giving UGA the ball inside field goal range. Now we’re up to 7 points (I’ll give UGA the field goal). Two phanton pass interference calls gave UGA at least 6 more points when UT has UGA stopped on third down. One of those calls led to a UGA touchdown, but I’ll go ahead and give them the field goals. So…that’s 13 gift points.

So…in my opinion, UT should have won the game 16 to 11. Now before you attack my post, UGA fans did the same thing when recounting the SC game…you simply subtracted 28 points and claimed a 42-17 victory.

djdawg

October 10th, 2011
2:32 pm

@Logic

thats 10 seconds of my life I will never get back reading your dribble……….

Your heroes

October 10th, 2011
2:32 pm

Following the Jan Kemp trial, the UGA president, Dr. Fred C. Davison,
resigned in disgrace in March 1986. The board of regents of the University
System of Georgia issued a report in April condemning Dr. Davison and Vince
Dooley, in a pattern of academic abuse in the admission and advancement of
student-athletes.

Mark Richt has continued the policies of Vince Dooley and refined them even more.

BreakingNews

October 10th, 2011
2:33 pm

Dear Tech fans:

Please play someone of any substance before you come running your mouths on the UGA blog. We still own you – you’ve beaten us ONCE in a decade, and our worst team in a decade beat you last year.

Logic

October 10th, 2011
2:34 pm

@djdawg…

Well I am talking to UGA fans…I guess it would be less painful to light my hire on fire and run around the room then to try and give back a little of what UGA fans dish out. I guess you guys own the “go back in time and take away our teams mistakes and change the score” rule?

Logic

October 10th, 2011
2:35 pm

SOUTHGADAWG88

October 10th, 2011
2:37 pm

UGA class of 71 and 73 You don’t have a clue.

Where's the Talk???

October 10th, 2011
2:37 pm

Hey…how come I don’t hear UGA fans enraged over Brandon “Un”Boykin’s cheap shot on Da’Rick Rogers? I figured that since UGA fans hate dirty play, they would be all over him for that.

GT Joe

October 10th, 2011
2:38 pm

Breakingnews: we beat UNC which is better than any team you beat.

Desert Fox

October 10th, 2011
2:42 pm

Hope the dawgs stay focused and don’t look past Vandy. With a few exceptions like last years game, they always play the Dawgs tough. They have excellent CB’s and lead the SEC w/14 int’s. Their run def isn’t too shabby either. It would be easy to overlook these guys so expect the unexpected and come out w/another W.

edumacated

October 10th, 2011
2:42 pm

Murray should be better than what he is showing us so far this year. We can’t beat Florida with him overthrowing wide open receivers all night. Truth be told, Mitchell had to slow up and wait on Murray’s (yet again) inaccurate throw on that long pass, otherwise it was an easy touchdown.

beanster

October 10th, 2011
2:44 pm

Yes!! More Jan Kemp nonsense!!!

@Your heroes — you and harold are going to have to turn off your computers soon. It’s about to be nap time at the old folks home.

tim

October 10th, 2011
2:45 pm

lloks like uga will finally win in jax this year….how bad would it be if a 3rd string freshman whipped you…..pups must win sometime and you better get the gators this year because next year will be back to the same old beatdown…get them gators now girls

DawginLex

October 10th, 2011
2:47 pm

ticketmaster

Why would the list need to be revised?

Has baseball season started already?

Because Vandy’s football team won’t beat UGA

and whoever said Vandy is better than UT will eat those words too.

JAWJeRDAWG

October 10th, 2011
2:47 pm

Tide Roll (wherever you are)

Just read on the Recruiting Blog that OT Vadal Alexander picked LSU over AU and UA.

How did Alabama miss out on this stellar OL recruit, Tide Roll.

Pitiful; just pitiful!

DawginLex

October 10th, 2011
2:49 pm

UNC almost lost to Louisville which barely beat Kentucky and who lost to FIU and Marshall.

UNC would lose to BSU,SC,MSU and UT and Ole Miss would give them a good game

beanster

October 10th, 2011
2:49 pm

Other than the fact that he pulled his hammy right after catching the ball, clearly un-edumacated.

GT Joe

October 10th, 2011
2:51 pm

um okay lex. UNC is 5-1 and #28 in the coaches poll, which is higher than auburn or UGA. But i guess you are smarter than the coaches…

Rilo

October 10th, 2011
2:52 pm

only preay here is if Bobo can get offered a Job coaching at a I-AA school next year. This is the only way to get better considering Richt’s loyalty to the Titanic….I mean Bobo the dying ship.

Rilo

October 10th, 2011
2:53 pm

prayer…not preay

beanster

October 10th, 2011
2:54 pm

LOL @ JawJeRDAWG!! Where is old TP ROLL these days?!?!

JAWJeRDAWG

October 10th, 2011
2:54 pm

edumacated

Must take exception with you.

Mitchell did not slow down to catch the ball; rather, he decelerated somewhat after catching the pass because he pulled his hamstring after only running a couple of steps.

You must have seen a different angle on the play than I had on my TV. You recken’?

richie

October 10th, 2011
2:56 pm

My first point, UNC isnt anywhere near the level of UT (with bray) or MSU (remember, they gave LSU a run for their money earlier in the season). Tech has a good team but hasnt played the good teams in the ACC yet so the jury is still out. Second with regard to Florida, they are having a hard time this year. Even with Brantley its hard to run pro style when the majority of UFs players are from the spread mold. Muschamps gotta recruit for his offense and when he does, UF will get better but still a year away. Finally, UGA has a realistic shot of winning out. Our toughest SEC games left are at home. The GT game is in ATL but as i said, we dont know how good that team really is when stacked up against real competition. Also UGA has the best Defense its had in a WHILE and now the Grantham hire is looking alot smarter than it did last year. GO DAWGS

JAWJeRDAWG

October 10th, 2011
2:57 pm

I don’t know where he is, beanster.

But I don’t think he could intelligently debunk this ‘miss’ by Coach Saban and UA.

Ticketmaster

October 10th, 2011
2:58 pm

Look past Vandy at your own peril.

BreakingNews

October 10th, 2011
2:58 pm

GT Joe:

You have absolutely no argument here…you almost lost to Maryland and you’ve yet to play Clemson, VT, and FSU, so until you play some of the real teams from your conference, shut up.

Pee-on-smokey

October 10th, 2011
2:58 pm

@VolNation: blown calls by the referees and luck always have an impact on a game. Poor execution by players does, too. Murray overthrew T. King twice — Dawgs should have won by a bigger margin again Tennessee, and Dawgs should have beaten SC chickens. In the end, the only thing that matters is the score — 20-12 in this case. Boo hoo. Can’t wait for Tennessee hillbillies to come to Athens next year for a beat-down.

JAWJeRDAWG

October 10th, 2011
2:59 pm

Ticketmaster

We’re looking past Vandy? Don’t think so.

Ticketmaster

October 10th, 2011
3:01 pm

Hope not. Vandy is a much better team than the Vols this year.

BreakingNews

October 10th, 2011
3:02 pm

@VolNation – and let’s not forget – you’re back absolutely fumbled the ball in the 1st half and we recovered, and you guys got to keep possession. So let’s not argue too much about bad calls here…

Ticketmaster

October 10th, 2011
3:02 pm

I don’t think Tech could handle Vandy. They’ll give UGA a game.

BreakingNews

October 10th, 2011
3:03 pm

*your back….my apologies

richie

October 10th, 2011
3:03 pm

if we had florida the next week after vandy then maybe but we have a bye so i dont think UGA will overlook the dores. still its gonna be a good game. The dores are MUCH improved this season

Joey

October 10th, 2011
3:07 pm

Pee-on-smokey, you musta had some pee breaks Sat nite, Murray made 4 terrible overthrows to wide open WRs. One was to bad the WR didn’t even reach for it.

He tightened up on the turnovers, but he just can’t miss all of those long balls. Dang, hit half of em, or even a third, and the game’s a blowout.

Realist

October 10th, 2011
3:08 pm

Bottom line—————— still haven’t beaten a team with a winning record.

Ticketmaster

October 10th, 2011
3:08 pm

I didn’t pay Vandy much attention until they played Bama. Only Arkansas has played a better game against them than Vandy did. Vandy looks like a much better team than Florida.

Where's the Talk???

October 10th, 2011
3:10 pm

@ Pee-on-Smokey and BreakingNews….

UT should have won the game 16-11.

Where's the Talk???

October 10th, 2011
3:12 pm

It amazes me how the same UGA fans that are now saying that “the only thing that matters is the score” are the same ones that were whining when UGA lost to SC…saying that “if you take away the 28 points we gave them, we should have won 42-17.” Hilarious.

SOUTHGADAWG88

October 10th, 2011
3:12 pm

Tenn had a winning record

Ticketmaster

October 10th, 2011
3:16 pm

“Tenn had a winning record”

Yep. Against Montana, Cincy and Buffalo.

WOOT!!!

Still@theBAR

October 10th, 2011
3:17 pm

SOUTHGADAWG88

YES they did. Murray finally did it. Let’s see if Murray can do it again? Let’s see igf Murray can beat a team that finishes the Season with a Winning record? His ONLY shot maybe TECH.

Josh Smith for 3

October 10th, 2011
3:19 pm

Defense won this game for UGA, plain and simple. Unless you’ve got Drew Brees or Peyton Manning at QB, you’re not going to be able to win if you can’t run the ball. Tennessee couldn’t use the run, so they lost.

Still@theBAR

October 10th, 2011
3:24 pm

Sorry the VOLS player had a hand and both legs holding the Ball.

gbal

October 10th, 2011
3:30 pm

POLL QUESTION –

WHICH TEAM IS MOST LIKELY TO GIVE UGA HELP (knocking off SC) IN MAKING IT TO ATLANTA:

1) TENNESSEE (Knoxville)
2) ARKANSAS (Fayetteville)
3) Mississippi St. (Starkville)
4) FLORIDA (Columbia)

WHICH TEAM IS MOST LIKELY TO HELP SC IN MAKING IT TO ATLANTA

1) VANDY (NASHVILLE)
2) FLORIDA (JACKSONVILLE)
3) KENTUCKY (ATHENS)
4) AUBURN (ATHENS)

I SAY ARK AND AUBURN BUT COULD ACTUALLY SEE 2 LOSSES FOR UGA AND SC WITH THE TIE GOING TO SC… HOPE NOT!

11/12/11 COULD BE A BIG GAME DAY – FLA @ SC & AU BETWEEN THE HEDGES.

Ticketmaster

October 10th, 2011
3:35 pm

SC loses to Arky and Florida.

UGA loses to Florida and Auburn.

Ticketmaster

October 10th, 2011
3:38 pm

You didn’t ask, but Florida loses to Auburn.

Joey

October 10th, 2011
3:41 pm

Obviously #2 on both questions, gbal.

Now a quiz from me. Whose quote is this?

““Obviously, you’re winning the games that really you need to win,” _________ said. “At the same time, those teams have really struggled. I don’t know if there’s a (conference) win among them.”

gbal

October 10th, 2011
3:42 pm

NOTE –

UGA BLOG POSTED 10/9 – 496 HITS
GT BLOG POSTED 10/9 – 245 HITS

BUGGS… GO BACK TO YOUR SITE… THERE’S ROOM!!