Fan talk: Dealing with Clowney, Aaron Murray’s body language, game day upgrades and more!

Jadeveon Clowney's performance against North Carolina drew some criticism. (Associated Press)

Jadeveon Clowney's performance against North Carolina drew some criticism. (Associated Press)

Let’s get straight to some of this week’s Junkyard Mail …

Not surprisingly, Jadeveon Clowney is on the minds of a number of UGA fans writing in this week. Bulldog Abe writes: Bill, I watched the South Carolina-North Carolina game and came away from it distinctly unimpressed. Clowney looked out of shape and winded and his numbers weren’t anything to get that excited about. Should we really be that worried about him? Meanwhile, Suzanne in Buckhead writes: Bill, I’m really worried about how Kenarious Gates and our offensive line will handle Mr. Clowney this week. They didn’t do such a great job last year, and based on what I saw at Clemson, I’m thinking we lose out mano a mano just in terms of talent. What can the coaches do to help out, in terms of strategy? And Danny, who says he’s been following the Dawgs since Kirby Moore was QB, offers a suggestion in that regard: Run straight at him. … I’m not saying run exclusively, but let him know we are not afraid to run at his [posterior]!

Abe, I wouldn’t judge Clowney (or any other top player) by their first game of the season. I expect Clowney to be as active as ever against the Bulldogs (and if you saw the past two years’ Georgia-South Carolina games, that’s not an enjoyable prospect). Suzanne, a few months back, Jon Stinchcomb talked with the AJC about how to contain Clowney and what he suggested was almost exactly mirrored this week by Mark Richt, who said: “There’s a lot of different things you can do on pass protection. One of the things is that if you slide your protection towards a guy like that, you free up your tackle not to block him one-on-one. Your tackle basically is responsible for taking him on an outside rush, but if he makes a move inside of him, there will be a guard waiting for him, so that’s one way. Another way is to try to even put a tight end to the side that he’s at and give him a little bit more to navigate as he’s coming through the line of scrimmage. The other thing is to have a back or a tight end off the ball who can chip on the way out. You can also design plays where you don’t hold the ball very long. Set your point, get up in the pocket and get the ball out quickly. There’s always your quick passing game where you may try to change up your blocking technique with the cut block from time to time. That might give him something to think about, but those are the things that you try to do. You can also sprint your protection to or away from him or move the pocket from time to time.” And Danny, yes, one of the ways of dealing with an aggressive pass-rusher like Clowney is either running right at him or throwing a quick pass right at the spot that he has rapidly departed. It’ll be interesting to see whether Mike Bobo employs that strategy at all Saturday.

Pete Talmadge is just one of quite a few letter writers upset with offensive coordinator Mike Bobo. He writes: Bill, I agreed with your Monday AJC column — all is not lost and there is still a lot of football to play. There is no shame in going to Clemson and losing by 3, but what disturbs me is that we got out-coached on offense. I felt that Bobo did a good job of play-calling last year, but that he strangely reverted to form from previous years on Saturday. Example: First and goal from the five — we run all 3 downs up the middle to no avail. On 3rd down, Clemson had 11 in the box — Murray could have rolled right and walked into the end zone. SC poses a more difficult threat with their defense. Unless Bobo and company make some meaningful adjustments, it could make for another very long night vs. Spurrier, which might make for a very long year.

As I wrote earlier in the week, Pete, I think Bobo is a much better play-caller than he gets credit for, but Saturday against Clemson definitely wasn’t one of his more effective efforts. Let’s hope he mixes it up much more against the Gamecocks.

Lenny Daniel writes: Bill, The officiating did seem quite inconsistent Saturday night. On the crucial 3rd down play where the Clemson WR was bobbling the ball as he appeared to be going out of bounds, can the officials review that (since it’s not a scoring play) or do the Georgia coaches have to challenge it? I was disappointed that we didn’t challenge it, because it looked like he didn’t have possession and that was on the drive that eventually gave Clemson the 10 point lead and put the game out of reach.

According to the 2013 NCAA Football Instant Replay Casebook, reviewable plays include a pass “ruled complete, incomplete or intercepted anywhere on the field of play.” It says there are two methods to stop a game and review a ruling on the field. The replay official and his crew shall review every play of a game. He may stop a game at any time before the ball is next legally put in play if there is reasonable evidence to believe an error was made in the initial on-field ruling, the play is reviewable and the outcome of a review would have a direct, competitive impact on the game. And the head coach of either team may request that play be stopped for a review by challenging the on-field ruling. The key there is that the official has to stop the game before the ball is put into play. Even though there obviously was some question whether the receiver had possession of the ball when he went out of bounds, the replay official didn’t act quickly enough and neither did Richt, and Clemson went with what was a fast snap even for its hurry-up offense before the play could be reviewed.

Bill Schoolfield writes: Bill, Where were the UGA fans Saturday? Did Clemson not make available the normal allotment of tickets? I expect it to be hostile environment, but I couldn’t even detect a GA section anywhere.

UGA received 7,500 tickets to the game from Clemson, and the ABC cameras showed a section of fans in red briefly at one point in the game. But they obviously were overwhelmed in terms of noise by the home crowd, who kept up a constant din. Sanford Stadium crowds need to start doing likewise.

Does Aaron Murray have the killer instinct? (Associated Press)

Does Aaron Murray have the killer instinct? (Associated Press)

Beach Dawg Living Among Gators writes: Bill, as always I continue to appreciate your candid views of our beloved Dawgs. Yesterday your radio cuz, Bill King, posed the question as to how much Aaron owns the responsibility for the recent dismal record against ranked teams. While he never answered the question, he went on to say that Aaron’s body language (primarily eyes) does not say winner! Your thoughts please on Aaron’s level of ownership against ranked teams — I tend to put the majority of responsibility on the coaches, mainly Bobo! Do you believe that Aaron has the “killer” instinct?

That’s bull. Unless the radio Bill King (no relation) has been down on the field playing against Murray (which he hasn’t), he has no idea what his eyes are showing. I’ll grant Murray doesn’t always keep his cool in the pocket like, say, David Greene did, but this whole Murray-against-ranked-teams thing overlooks the fact that he doesn’t play those games by himself. It’s a team game and generally when Murray doesn’t play that well you can bet his offensive line hasn’t played well. As for a killer instinct, just look at those key downs against Florida the past couple of years when he delivered big-game passes on the money. Of course, part of the credit there should go to his receivers, who made spectacular grabs. Like I said, it’s a team game.

Chuck Corley writes: I urge you to please ask the Bulldog Nation to give a long loud standing ovation to Kolton Houston when he is introduced on Saturday. Kolton never lost faith and after 3 years of NCAA stupidity, he finally has joined his teammates on the field.

Assuming Houston’s name is announced to the crowd at some point, I’d say a loud ovation will be pretty much a given.

Ron writes: Hey Bill, I saw on the UGA facilities [Twitter] page (@UGAFACILITIES) a picture of a new addition to Sanford: 2 sections of seating right by the bulldog statue in front of the [East] end zone. Personally, I like the new seats. Your thoughts?

New seats have been added in the East end zone of Sanford Stadium. (UGA Facilities Twitter feed)

New seats have been added in the East end zone of Sanford Stadium. (UGA Facilities Twitter feed)

My first inclination was that these were seats for the recruits. I asked UGA sports information chief Claude Felton, and he sent along a statement from Jim Booz, senior associate atheltic director for compliance. It said: “Thanks for your inquiry. Please understand that due to NCAA rules, we are not able to elaborate too much about the location of seats for prospective student-athletes. Yes, we have changed seat locations for some prospective student-athletes. Members of our staff have worked hard and put forth much effort related to this move and we do believe it will benefit the University of Georgia and our prospective student-athletes.” That sounds pretty much like a nonconfirmation confirmation, to put it in Watergate terms.

Bulldawg Babe writes: Bill, you’re the man with the (gameday) plan, so I’m hoping you can answer several questions for me. Firstly, what time will the Dawg Walk be? In the past, I believe it was supposed to be an hour and a half before kickoff, right? Also, has UGA done anything to upgrade the gameday experience in Sanford Stadium this season? Most pointedly, has anything been done about improving wi-fi access? Thanks!

This season, the general rule is that the Dawg Walk will be 1 hour and 50 minutes (approximately) before kickoff. This week, the Dawgs are scheduled to walk at 2:35 p.m, with kickoff at at 4:31 p.m. I asked Claude Felton about wi-fi and he said “there are no changes this season in stadium wi-fi access although research is continuing on the subject.” As for other game day changes, the two biggest are that all tickets will be scanned at the entry gate (which might slow things down a tad, so you might want to enter the stadium earlier than in the past) and there’ve been some additions to the concessions offered (Chick-fil-A, Papa John’s, Sonny’s barbecue and Subway), plus free refills on the largest sizes of souvenir fountain drink cups and popcorn buckets and more vendors out in the stands. There’s also a parking hotline to assist fans with directions, public handicap lot availability, the East Campus gameday shuttle and other gameday information (706-425-3052). And for the first three home games, when it likely will be hot, misting stations for fans will be located near Gates 2, 7 and 10. Also this season, on Fridays before a home game, an exhibit of historical football memorabilia from the UGA Athletic Association Archives will be displayed, and guided tours of the three Special Collections galleries will be offered each home game Friday at 3 p.m. at the Richard B. Russell Building Special Collections Libraries, 300 S. Hull St., located near the intersection of Baxter and Lumpkin streets. The building and exhibit galleries are open to the public Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 1-5 p.m. on non-home game Saturdays.

Our Ice Dawg correspondent Connor Kelly writes: Hi Bill, Just wanted to let know the Athens-Clarke County Commisioners voted 6-3 to approve an ice arena being built in the Classic Center! Looks like it won’t be too long until UGA fans and students can cheer on the Ice Dawgs without ever leaving Athens.

That’s great news, Connor. I’m adding watching a hockey game in downtown Athens to my UGA Bucket List!

Finally, Jim P. writes: Bill, Which do you like writing more about, the Dawgs or music? Your column a while back about concert experiences showed great passion for both. Keep up the great work.

Jim, I’ve been fortunate to write plenty about both of my favorite subjects over the years, having served as the Constitution’s rock and pop music critic and publishing a Beatles magazine in my spare time as well as being the Junkyard Blawger. I’ve had a lot of fun over the years interviewing lots of music legends (from Brian Wilson and Billy Joel to Tammy Wynette and Frank Zappa, plus three Beatles) and seeing many great concerts. But I grew up a Georgia Bulldogs fan and there’s no bigger thrill for me than a big UGA win. Thankfully, I don’t have to choose between the two interests.

Go Dawgs!

Got something you want to discuss concerning the Dawgs? Or a question you want the Junkyard Blawg to tackle? Email me at  junkyardblawg@gmail.com.

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— Bill King, Junkyard Blawg

102 comments Add your comment

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
9:40 am

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
9:42 am

Been a long time since I was 1st!

That’s a good OMEN,

Dawgs score 1st – they win.

Game Crocks make 1st turnover – Dawgs win.

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
9:43 am

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
9:44 am

2nd too?

That’s a great good OMEN.

Dawgs score 1st and 2nd & Dawgs win.

Slaw Dawg

September 6th, 2013
9:44 am

3rd and long….

Uh Oh!

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
9:46 am

Murray has been sacked 86 times in his 3 yr going on 4 yr career

Stafford had to run for his life too

Now I wonder is there something these coaches should be trying to correct?

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
9:48 am

UGA will need to do more than just score a bunch of points

It needs a defensive coordinator that doesnt give up another 30+ points a game to a ranked team

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
9:54 am

I know Kolton Houston is a feel good story and all that but he hadn’t played in three or so years ……. why start him when you have John Theus (freshman All American)?

Is John Theus still being held back by his surgically repaired foot?

Is Chris Burnett being held back by his surgically repaired shoulder?

Is Xzavier Ward (OT) being held back by a mysterious knee injury when he was penciled in to start at LOT back during the sprin?

Folks – that;s three starters hobbled by injuries and a key reason the OL didn’t perform last week.

YES Murray had two turnovers – you can’t throw the ball on your back so well.

Josh Harvey- Clemmons is now the savior of the “D?. Well we shall see. He has not played a down yet……. still unproven.

Moving our most consistent DE to Nose makes NO sense to me. If you don’t have a legitimate NT go to a form man line where you do have at least four DT’s.

That’s all I got to say right now…….. oh, and when Marshall (DWI) comes back – stay with Beyles for extra points.

Skokie Dog

September 6th, 2013
9:55 am

Here’s what Murray’s eyes say when a pass play is called: see that receiver that I’m staring at as soon as I look downfield, the one with the “G” on his helmet that I’m locked on to? That’s the guy who’s going to get the chance to catch this next one, baby! That is, unless somebody from the other team swipes it before the ball reaches the guy that I’m locked on to.

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
9:59 am

That was “four man line” and four legitimate DT’s………. personally never cared for the 3-4 anyway.

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
10:01 am

Skokie – you been smokie a little? Still not legal in Jawja ’cause Jawja didn’t vote Obama.

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
10:08 am

#1 Bring in the 3rd string OL to cut Clowney down at the knees on the 1st toss sweep.

#2 Ear hole Shaw the 1st time he throws the ball – similar to Diahl’s hit on Murray last year.

#3 Complain whine and scream at the refs like Spurrier does constantly the whole game.

#4 Run a bubble screen right at Spurrier on the sidelines – sending him to the ER.

Then play the ball game!

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
10:15 am

After hearing all the BS by the commentators at last weeks NC/SC game you would think:

#1 South Carolina crushed NC – but not so – it was 27-10 folks.

#2 Clowney dogged it all night long and was just plain sorry – not so -recovering from a virus and still disrupted NC’s offense when he was in there.

This is going to be ONE whale of a physical game and neither team is as good as they were last year so far.

UGA has lost King, Brown and now Mitchell from the WR deep threats they had last year.

Game Crocks aren’t as good on offense either.

Fairly low scoring and fewest turnovers and penalties wins the game.

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
10:19 am

Repeat after me –
No screw ups
No turnovers
No penalties
DAWGS WIN!

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
10:22 am

Something you might ought to think about

NC gets the ball off much quicker than we do because thats the style of their offense

It might be a long day if that doesnt change

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
10:23 am

No penalties

LOL

When has this coaching worked on that aspect of the game

Slaw Dawg

September 6th, 2013
10:28 am

Bonus Question: Who will be the first player ejected from the game?

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
10:33 am

Slaw Dawg – WELL they are playing in Athens so probably NONE will be ejected. Just let them play! This ain’t a game for namby pamby’s….. this ain’t soccer.

Earholes and chop blocking are legal – this is the MMA of the SEC!

Slaw Dawg

September 6th, 2013
10:36 am

Maybe I should have asked which coach? ;-)

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
10:37 am

Bring in King Kong at NT and Godzilla at DE…… It’s TIME!

P.S. Mothra at free safety can cover a lot of ground

Where are the “D”’s of the great Erk Russel?

Nobody – I mean – nobody ran over the Junkyard Dawgs!

Macclenny_dawg

September 6th, 2013
10:40 am

Bill,
I disagree with you Bobo isn’t a better play caller than he gets credit for. He continually runs 3 straight times as soon as we get a lead against anybody. He does call a good set of plays as soon as we get down some points. He just needs to learn to call plays like we are losing and the team needs to learn to play like that every play. I also am not convinced he has confidence in Murray to not turn the ball over. We will never win a championship as long as he calls the plays. Go Dawgs!!!

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
10:42 am

Jawja’s gonna win ’cause they only got one suspension for this game – and he can’t kick worth a “D” anyway. Better off with Beyles….. deep snapper is a rookie – get it together boy!

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
10:44 am

Bobo didn’t toss sweep at the 5 either…… scared of a turnover?

Can’t play scared – got to be confident and aggressive to survive in the SEC.

Desert Fox

September 6th, 2013
10:50 am

Recall the game vs FL when the entire GA team rushed the field after GA scored the 1st TD on their initial drive? How’s this for follow up: on GA’s 1st play of their 1st possession (would work better if GA rec’d the KO to begin game) all 11 on offense gang rush Clowney and bury him. yeah, they’ll most likely be penalized a ton especially if Wagers is the referee. Just a rambling thought to really get the crowd into the game especially after the JD remark about AM is afraid of him. Send the big dude a message.

It’s unlikely the dawgs are going to beat SC based on last weeks performance by both the OL, the defense and mysterious play calling by Bobo. I just don’t see them improving play one week removed from what most folks called a weak performance excluding those explosive plays by our backfield. The evil genius has put together a good team over the past several years and I don’t see the dawgs or our coaches performing any miracles short of SC imploding on themselves. That can happen of course and nothing would be sweeter to see the ole ball coach dispatch his visor at least a dozen times. Here’s hoping the dawgs and coaches pull one out for the crowd and bulldog nation.

Flo-Ri-Duh

September 6th, 2013
10:53 am

New name for the Game Crocks stupid mascot > CROCKY!

What you think?

SCseas

September 6th, 2013
11:51 am

“Should we really be that worried about him”

No, not at all…just put that same OT on him which was abused last year and which showed vs Clemson that he has not gotten much better….no need to keep extra RB\TE in on every play to protect Murray. All is well.

Poor AMurray, hasn’t he been abused enough?

What is rather funny is that people think that cruising to a 17 pts win and holding UNC to a 1/3 of their usual output was a “bad” day for the SC defense…..my, my, my how times have changed…..

Well when ya have to look the other way to avoid thinking about giving up 38 pts to a team which that SC defense shut completely down in Death Valley, just a few months ago…..SC held Boyd to 11 completions for 153 yds with 2 ints…..Watkins had 1 catch for 11 yds….well you got to look for silver linings somewhere.

Just block Clowney with Gates and all is well.

dawgfan

September 6th, 2013
11:58 am

That Mark Richt quote on Clowney is emblematic of the problem with this program. “Just slide a guy over here. Chip him there. Maybe do the cha cha with him. Blah, blah, blah.” One word: WEAK. This is the kind of soft crap our players hear day after day and then we wonder why we go out and get physically manhandled by teams of equal or greater talent. Somebody better be prepared to grow a pair and go mano a mano with him or its going to be another long afternoon against a ranked team.

That’s just all there is to it.

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
12:00 pm

“Can’t play scared”

This coaching staff does that almost every game

I actually dont see that happening though since the season will be over with a loss tomorrow

But I actually didnt think we would revert back to conservative play calling either with the offense we have either

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
12:12 pm

I see another article on Murray needing be sharper

Anyone know when this coaching staff is going to be held to a better standard

All I have seen is the same ole football we have been seeing since 2005

dawgfan

September 6th, 2013
12:23 pm

It’s getting boring how predictable it all is. We’ll turn the ball over at least twice tomorrow, bare minimum. We’ll pop a few big plays here an there, but for the most part our offense will look like its running in to a brick wall on every play. Shaw and Mike Davis will run wild over huge swaths of the field that our completely unmanned by our defense. On at least two or three occasions you will say to our defense, particularly the secondary, “my freaking grandmother could have made that tackle.”

Just watch and see. I’d bet a decent sum of money that it will go exactly like that. It’s been like that for 5 freaking years now and I saw nothing in the Clemson game that tells me anything has changed.

Thanks.

Roswell Dawg

September 6th, 2013
12:27 pm

I predict at least one Murray fumble and one Murray interception. That’s his “big game” standard.

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
12:27 pm

dawgfan

longer than 5 years; its been going on since 05

gbal

September 6th, 2013
12:28 pm

The biggest upgrade that Sanford Stadium need so far as the Game Day Experience…. Some rowdy enthusiastic fans filling the seats!!!

WE… don’t give our DAWGS NEAR… Not even close… to the noise and energy that our opponents give their teams and the home field advantage that results. NOT EVEN CLOSE!!

One exception maybe came close…. Auburn Black out.

And the noise doesn’t come from PA Rap/Head Banging music!!

Get Up UGA FANS>>> DO YOUR PART!!!

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
12:28 pm

I predict we get the lead then revert back to up the middle again ;)

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
12:30 pm

Going out on a limb here but since we are playing a ranked team I also predict giving up 30+ points on defense since we have done that every game vs ranked teams except 1 in 3 years ;)

gbal

September 6th, 2013
12:30 pm

Clemson, AU, LSU, UT, FLA, BAMA, OM, ARK, A&M….SC Their fans all put us to shame.

gbal

September 6th, 2013
12:31 pm

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
12:33 pm

gbal

Did I miss something other than the SEC championship game last year we really havent had much to get up for

unless you mean getting up for those easy win teams like Buffalo GSU etc

Flat Tire doesnt live in Delusionalville Ga.

September 6th, 2013
12:35 pm

gbal

Those teams you mention beat ranked teams

Jack Bull

September 6th, 2013
12:36 pm

Nope, you can’t throw the ball too well from your back. BUT, you should be able to throw the ball well from your feet, not at receivers knees. Nor continue to get potential big gain screen passes knocked back in your face. Nor throw the ball behind receivers crossing the middle wide open..and yes, even though you get sacked, you still should be able to hold on the ball..

and something people seem to forget about the play calling, in this offense AM has SEVERAL options when lining up at the line of scrimmage..most, not all, but most, of the time, it’s squarely up to him to get the offense into the correct play..

Bottom line, AM is about 2-12 against good teams..team game? sure! But at some point a great QB has to step up his game..not just ONE time against Floriduh..

alas, he studies film a lot, so I guess he’s the man for the job!

gbal

September 6th, 2013
12:36 pm

Call it conservative play calling…??? Going in to the season I felt that we needed to grind some clock VS the big play hit, to keep the D off the field and point down for the opponent. So calling a lot of what might be considered conservative call in the name of grinding clock… I am OK with that… but we must be physical across the OL to do this with any consistency and I am not sure we can be physical enough! Puts the D in a bind.

gbal

September 6th, 2013
12:41 pm

FT you fall into the fickle fan group I guess.

Clemson lost their two games in the regular season against ranked opponents…. They are still sky high every game… Their fans.

This has be in issue with GA fans since the 70’s. ( I was there)

dawgfan

September 6th, 2013
1:00 pm

True for the most part Flat Tire. It takes people talking about firing Richt to light a fire under his arse. He was on the hot seat in ‘06 and then we had a decent year in ‘07. He almost got fired in ‘10 and then admittedly did a pretty nice turnaround in ‘11 and ‘12, although we still can’t beat good teams. At any rate, it’s amazing what happens when you actually hold a coach accountable. All the Richt homers want to do is make excuses for him and throw the players under the bus right now. They’re still riding high over “almost” beating Alabama. That’s the greatest thing to happen to this program in 7 years which is sad.

Thanks.

ShowMeYurTD's

September 6th, 2013
1:25 pm

As long as CMR wins a minimum of 10 games per yr he has a job at UGA. He is golden.

Slaw Dawg

September 6th, 2013
1:33 pm

I think I’ve figured it out. Georgia is a Fifth Quarter team.

If only we’d have had one more quarter to play, then we would have won all those games we lost over the past 8 years.

Class of '98

September 6th, 2013
1:35 pm

Bill, I’m a big Beatles fan, too, and if you know anybody who is in charge of these kinds of things, tell them to play “Hey Bulldog” over the PA during warm-ups before every game.

NCDawg

September 6th, 2013
1:47 pm

Murray does not get flustered in the pocket because he is scared to be hit… if that were the case then he should have fallen apart after the clock cleaning he got from Dial. NO… his problem is that he HATES to fail. In his mind not getting the ball to a receiver is a LOSS.

He works his as$ off and skips spring break, organizes and directs off season workouts… he is obsessive about winning. He clamps down too hard and takes TOO much of the game on his shoulders. He is like the small business owner that comes up short of his sales goals because he doesn’t know how to delegate. He makes it all about how HE performs. The more the offense is required to do to win a game the tighter he winds up because he thinks it’s HIS job to do whatever it takes to win.

Murray needs to let go and stop thinking about WHO he is playing and just play ball. He had a run first mentality when he came to UGA… you do remember that don’t you? He made lots of plays with his feet. He has had that drummed out of him. He needs to say “screw it” and start moving the pocket. Check down into roll outs. Call QB draws every once in a while. Just to loosen up.

When our O-line melts down… it melts down. Rarely does he even have an opportunity to step up… the pocket closes around him like a noose and BAM…down he goes.

We need to think minimum 4-5 yards on 1st down… if that calls for shorter passes then so be it. If the run isn’t there get the ball to a back on the edges. Just make sure that 2nd down is no more than 6 yards to go. Sure take the deeper throw if it’s there but give your line a better chance to protect the QB.

That said… I’ll be surprised if our O-line doesn’t look much better. And if they look better then Murray will be better…

Dawgs win… no idea what the score will be and don’t care as long as we have 1 more point than they do.

Class of '98

September 6th, 2013
2:01 pm

NC Dawg, well put. I agree with every word. We need to concentrate on positive gains on first down.

And it may work against some teams, but against South Carolina, we need to abandon the long, drawn-out play-action fakes that leave Murray with his back to the line of scrimmage for a moment or two. Running those plays is just begging for Murray to get blindsided and have the ball knocked free.

ARdawg

September 6th, 2013
2:21 pm

Flo-ri-duh
Jesse Palmer’s analysis from Chips blog was pretty accurate IMHO. Murray needs to be sharper. Take “more” ownership in the passes he does throw. He was all over the place in Clemsom. The problem with his performance last was, he is much better than he played. Whatever he’s doing for game prep, he needs to change

NCDawg

September 6th, 2013
2:27 pm

ARdawg
September 6th, 2013
2:21 pm

I don’t think he doesn’t prepare well enough… I think he prepares TOO much. He was holding onto the ball a tad too long and dragging it into the ground for some stupid reason. He takes plenty of ownership of his play… he works his as$ off… but he now needs to learn the fine art of just playing.

When you think too much about what you are doing, no matter what it is, it becomes stilted. He needs to just let go and play.