Best news for UGA fans would be no news at all

Kolton Houston can still practice with the Dogs while he's in NCAA hell. (Brant Sanderlin / AJC)

Kolton Houston can still practice with the Dogs while he's in NCAA hell. (Brant Sanderlin / AJC)

For the fans who follow UGA football, it’s just about gotten to the point lately where the only good news is no news.

Unfortunately, there was news aplenty at Mark Richt’s first press session of the season to mark the beginning of preseason camp.

So we learned that the rumors about much-needed offensive tackle Kolton Houston waiting out an NCAA suspension for failing a test for a banned substance were true, and that despite his family’s assertion that the drug was given to him by a doctor after surgery and considerable evidence that there’s been no reuse since 2010, the governing body of college athletics won’t let him play until it no longer shows up in his weekly blood tests.

Oh, and we also got confirmation that NCAA President Mark Emmert is an arrogant jerk. You got a measure of just how badly Emmert has gotten under the skin of UGA officials in the fact that they released correspondence between Greg McGarity and the NCAA chief. The UGA athletic director made an appeal for “a young man who’s done everything possible to clear himself,” only to have Emmert sneeringly reply that he’s “surprised the institution would make such a request” because, after all, they could have screwed the kid over even worse by applying additional sanctions for each test that still showed the drug in Houston’s system!

Ron Courson, UGA’s director of sports medicine, was blistering in his criticism of the NCAA as he noted “the most distressing aspect of this case is the appearance that no one at the NCAA actually cares enough about this case to truly look at it in an objective manner.”

Better watch out, Ron, or you might get slapped with a fine for not being deferential enough to Czar Emmert.

We also learned that yet another of Todd Grantham’s defensive starters will be missing the Missouri game. This time it’s Chase Vasser, suspended for the first two games of the season because of a May DUI arrest in Buckhead. Thanks to Cornelius Washington moving to defensive end, Vasser was listed as first-string at the outside linebacker spot opposite All-American Jarvis Jones.

Jones, who bypassed the NFL to return for what he believes could be a special season for the Dogs, sounded as optimistic as ever Thursday, noting “we know what we’re capable of,” but away from the spotlight he would certainly have a right to be pretty ticked off at the cavalier way some of his teammates seem to be approaching a great opportunity.

So far, the Georgia defense’s biggest obstacle appears to be the Georgia defense.

Otherwise, the comments from Richt and some of his players at Thursday’s press preview were pretty much what you’d expect. Watts Dantzler will start out replacing Houston on the OL, with incoming freshman John Theus backing him up. (If Theus isn’t starting by the South Carolina game, there’s going to be a lot of surprised college football experts.) … Richt will continue to employ a tailback-by-committee approach (he noted it worked pretty well for LSU), with the head coach saying true freshmen Keith Marshall and Todd Gurley having a chance to “possibly play big,” though “they have to beat out Richard [Samuel] and Ken [Malcome] first.” … Georgia’s placekicker will try to kick it out of the end zone, Richt says — except when the coaches deem a high directional kick more appropriate. (Ah, the legacy of Coach Fab lives on!) … And if anything happens to Aaron Murray, the redshirt comes off Hutson Mason at quarterback. (Cue the usual chorus from this forum’s Mason fan club.)

All in all, about the only positive coming out of Thursday was the return of the players to the Woodruff Practice Fields. Maybe now that they’re back practicing and classes are less than two weeks away, Georgia’s Bulldogs can actually focus on justifying their Top 10 preseason status, as confirmed Thursday by the USA Today coaches poll.

And quit shooting themselves in the foot.

JUNKYARD MAIL CALL

Got something you want to discuss concerning UGA athletics? Or maybe a question you want the Junkyard Blawg to tackle? Send it to junkyardblawg@gmail.com.

Find me on Facebook.

Follow me on Twitter.

— Bill King, Junkyard Blawg

153 comments Add your comment

Moobs Johnson

August 3rd, 2012
10:45 am

Best news for Georgia fans would be that they would hire a new coach that doesn’t have time for this stuff.

VINCE

August 3rd, 2012
10:54 am

Just more room for walk-ons. All part of Richts grand scheme.

Dawg Haus

August 3rd, 2012
10:56 am

Agreed, Bill. No news is good news these days.

BMOC

August 3rd, 2012
11:00 am

If I didn’t know better,I’d swarnI’d wrote that article myself Bill.. so frustrating

piermontdawgny

August 3rd, 2012
11:04 am

the best news is college football begins in less than one month!

Spanky

August 3rd, 2012
11:11 am

It’s a good thing that we’re deep at the LB position! We have some talent coming on from redshirt season, and this is their opportunity to step it up!!

Bill, what ever happened to the Roverback position?? I was telling my son about Terry Hoage, who played the Rover position as good as anyone! Any thoughts?

AugustaDawg

August 3rd, 2012
11:13 am

Wasn’t worried about Mizzou game but am becoming increasingly so. Reminiscent of the Okie St game we should have won in Stillwater a few years ago. We have enough talent but the depth is becoming more and more concerning. Nonetheless ready for kickoff. GATA. Of course AJC behind the eightball regarding news of our new 6′9″ 360 lbs lineman.

Charlie Sheen

August 3rd, 2012
11:17 am

Winning would be good news for uga!

AugustaDawg

August 3rd, 2012
11:18 am

I’ll correct myself. MC did tweet it about an hour ago or so. My bad. (recruit #24)

Cuz

August 3rd, 2012
11:18 am

I hope we can field a team for the first two games.

Phat Phil

August 3rd, 2012
11:22 am

UGA is “in da hunt” for the Fulmer Cup Mr. Howdy Doody!

Dawg_Mike

August 3rd, 2012
11:25 am

Playoffs ?
Playoffs?
I just hope we can win a game………..

unfair

August 3rd, 2012
11:29 am

Why didnt Richt kick vasser and houston off the team like he did isaiah and ealey? houston is apparently still on the juice.

outside looking in

August 3rd, 2012
11:35 am

all you sheeple uga fans need to clean house. everyone knows that this program is a sinking ship and Howdy Doody needs to get rid of Richts Boys Home for the troubled .

Roger Clemmons

August 3rd, 2012
11:37 am

Them UGA players need to stay off the juice!

HoundDawg

August 3rd, 2012
11:38 am

@unfair I dont think a DUI and felony gun possession are on the same level.

MY Dawg

August 3rd, 2012
12:07 pm

Hey Grantham, put a boot in your defenses tail end…..@ unfair , you’re an idiot, and probaly a nerd idiot ! The biggest obstacle Georgia has faced has been itself. Crowell was a panty wearing thug from day 1. Granted he was a talented running back, and I predict that he will once again be D1 next year. Once the stable of running backs get going people will ask Isiah who? Go Dawgs!

robodawg

August 3rd, 2012
12:13 pm

No news would be good news indeed. Unless the news was Penn State’s entire offensive line transferring to Georgia. It’s sounding like our lack of depth may again be our Achilles heel.

I’d love to see the AJC find a medical expert who can explain what’s happening with Kolton. How long till he might get a clean test?

ARdawg

August 3rd, 2012
12:18 pm

Emmert and the NCAA are completely out of control

Dawg Haus

August 3rd, 2012
12:24 pm

Man, Coach Richt has totally lost control over the NCAA!

Dawg Haus

August 3rd, 2012
12:24 pm

Did y’all hear a USCe QB got busted, too? CMR really needs to take control of that program.

Dawg Haus

August 3rd, 2012
12:25 pm

In all seriousness, this has been one frustrating offseason. I’m hoping for a good 2012, but the Dawgs sure have been shooting themselves in the foot.

BODIDLEY

August 3rd, 2012
12:37 pm

WHO WILL BE NEXT? SURLELY AT LEAST ONE MORE BEFORE THE SEASON STARTS – 4 WEEKS LEFT!

Dawg Haus

August 3rd, 2012
12:42 pm

BODIDLEY, it will be Hairy Dawg.

Dawg Tired

August 3rd, 2012
12:53 pm

These immature incidents actually are a pretty good indication of just how committed these young men are to the football program that is paying for thier college education. Very troubling.

edumacated

August 3rd, 2012
12:56 pm

Nothing is going to happen to Murray. No, he is going to play every quarter, of every game, whether he gives them away or not.

evillurks

August 3rd, 2012
12:59 pm

I find it hilarious that even THuga homers like this guy writing this blog have gotten to the point where their delusion has them lashing out at the NCAA for enforcing the rules!!!!! Good God!!!

You mutts think that as long as a kid plays for your football team, he should be able to get away with using drugs, beating women, using banned steriods, carrying concealed weapons around with them in their cars, the list is endless.

And it’s always SOMEONE ELES’s fault!!!

You’re program should be given the death penalty for being so corrupt. And with the way you’re admin is smartin’ off to Emmert and staff…you sons of guns are gonna find yourselves staring down the barrell of the NCAA shotgun with no mercy in sight the next time you get caught breaking a major rule.

Good riddance to bad rubbish when that happens!

Grantham's the Man

August 3rd, 2012
1:13 pm

Who could be suprised that the NCAA is screwing UGA yet again. If Houston played on just about any other team he would already be cleared to play.

I’m glad UGA called the NCAA out on this one! Might as well, they are already working hard to punish Ga to the max, every time they get a chance.

Too bad the NCAA can’t seperate the teams that are working to do things by the rules (UGA) from the many who are working just as hard to cheat.

Dawg Haus

August 3rd, 2012
1:16 pm

Agreed, Grantham’s the Man. I like how McGarity and Courson aren’t backing down from the NCAA as they clearly have a legitimate case to present. Unfortunately for UGA, Emmert’s god complex just got a huge shot in the arm from the Penn State case. I don’t expect to see Houston playing for the Dawgs in 2012. :(

DooleyDoo

August 3rd, 2012
1:23 pm

Stay positive! Tee hee hee

m is for mullett

August 3rd, 2012
1:28 pm

@ evillurks “Good riddance to bad rubbish when that happens!”
That’s what your mama said when she gave birth to you!

UGA Insider

August 3rd, 2012
1:55 pm

The bad news for UGA is special teams. We lost 2 games and should have lost Vandy due to this and I don’t see anything so far as an upgrade. This season will be defined close losses due to missed chip shots and poor punt coverage. 8-5 at best this year guys…

RxDawg

August 3rd, 2012
2:01 pm

Man you ain’t kiddin. Well…. here’s a glass half full look. If we can just hang on and win the first few games the forced experience on our backups might be pretty beneficial down the strecth.

GTBob

August 3rd, 2012
2:07 pm

As long as you guys are recruiting the kind of guys that you have been, this news will keep coming out. The overwhelming desire to win football games at any cost is going to keep making the University look stupid.

DawgFight

August 3rd, 2012
2:07 pm

I beg to differ with Coach Richt on his tailback by committee thing.

Yeah, it works for LSU because they have 3 backs that run for over 6 yards a carry.

We got none.

Malcome runs for 4 ypc, Samuel for 3 ypc.

If Marshall or Gurley can average 5-6 ypc, why even let Malcome & Samuel touch the ball unless you like to lose?

drbasic1

August 3rd, 2012
2:11 pm

@GTbob

dude you need a life and must be such a simpleton…..

DawgFight

August 3rd, 2012
2:12 pm

Last year, Samuel got 3 yards a carry, and Thomas got 5 ypc, yet Richt gave Samuel 80+ carries, while Thomas got about 70.

Crowell rotated with 3 or 4 backs, and still got injured multiple times over the season.

Herschel didn’t rotate, got 1000 carries with no games missed.

Moreno did well in 2007, didn’t get injured.

I say reward the 5+ ypc guys, not the 3ypc plodders.

Lowcountry Bulldawg

August 3rd, 2012
2:14 pm

I would ask what else could happen, but at this rate somehting worse would surely find itself in Athens Ga. The lack of discpline this team has shown this offseason is a typical precursor to a penalty, turnover led season. This isn’t our first rodeo with this type of offseason.

DawgFight

August 3rd, 2012
2:15 pm

Does anyone know if LSU has a running back that averages 3 yards per carry, and gets more carries than the backs that get 6 yards per carry?

Since Richt referenced he was following the LSU model, maybe someone can find that out.

Hey, Spanky...

August 3rd, 2012
2:19 pm

…rover back, strong safety, weak safety, nickle back – they are “basically” all the same thing, with tweaks depending on the offense and the down and distance…but Hoage was very special, at least back then…

[...] the only good news is no news. Unfortunately, there was news. … See the original post: Best news for UGA fans would be no news at all | UGA: The … ← Fantasy Football – Quite Possibly the Most Populer Online Video … Seneca [...]

7576DAWG

August 3rd, 2012
2:25 pm

UGA Insider
I don’t think you can make that broad of a statement just yet. I think the new kicking rules will help Georgia a lot because I think most coaches will chose to take the ball on the 25 than run the out of the end zone or risk injury to one of their Offensive stars.
Some of you fans who will be watching the practices need to report how the two Freshmen are doing in the kicking game every week. Morgan and Barber are two of the most important 2012 recruits and will determine a lot of the outcomes for Georgia this year if they are as good as we all hope.

7576DAWG

August 3rd, 2012
2:33 pm

I think Gurley is going to be a hand full for any Defense this year. We know Marshall will be a great back but if Gurley can start with the First game I think there is a possibility that Georgia could have two Tailbacks with over 1000 yards each this year. Not taking anything away from Marshall but Gurley could easily be another Lattimore if CMR and Bobo will play him and let him carry the ball 15 to 25 times a game.

DawgFight

August 3rd, 2012
2:36 pm

Richt’s made it clear in 2011, if you are a good passblocking running back, he doesn’t care if you average 2.9 yards per carry like Richard Samuel did, you’ll get a lot of carries as long as you protect Aaron Murray.

LSU doesn’t have a single running back that averaged less than 3 ypc, like Smaule did, and somehow managed to get 80+ carries.

JRW Dawg

August 3rd, 2012
2:52 pm

I often wonder if I only think UGA has more stuff happen to them because I pay more attention to them; do other schools deal with this BS like we do?

RxDawg

August 3rd, 2012
2:56 pm

“I think there is a possibility that Georgia could have two Tailbacks with over 1000 yards each this year.”

Woh Nelly! Barkeep, I’ll have what he’s having sir!

Keith

August 3rd, 2012
3:06 pm

Anyone that would rank this bunch of underperformers in the top 10 is an idiot. Until all this off the field drama stops- we will continue to be average to poor on the field. What is suppose to be a great year now looks 8-4, 9-3 at best. I am disgusted by the weekly embarrassments of the UGA football team

Prediction

August 3rd, 2012
3:09 pm

I foresee a very angry and frustrated poster named evillurks as this season unfolds and the Dogs are taking no prisoners. Probably will be lashing out an anything Dog-related in coming months.

That being said, I bet even evillurks and GTBob were cheering as they watched the Olympics relay race where 2 Lady Dog swimmers led the U.S. to victory the other night.

It is August, El Leg Humperos are numero uno!

August 3rd, 2012
3:12 pm

It is amazing that UGA fans think that they get cheated all the time. I football they never hold or cheap shot, in basketball they never foul and in baseball every 3rd strike call is way outside. Now the NCAA is cheating them because they expect the rules not to be enforced. If AJ Green had come clean instead of lying he would have got 2 games at the most. Pathetic………..

Tide Roll's tutor

August 3rd, 2012
3:13 pm

Evillurks, are you tide roll posting under another name? You should be working on those critical thinking skills assignments you were given the other day. Is it a coincidence we have not seen tide roll on here lately, and yet evillurks is posting in a similar fashion?

Apologies if you are NOT tide roll, but I will be glad to provide you tutoring also if you wish.