What will it take for 2013 Dawgs to still be considered successful?

Aaron Murray said Georgia finishing with a 9-3 record would be "a great year." Do you agree? (Associated Press)

Aaron Murray said Georgia finishing with a 9-3 record would be "a great year." Do you agree? (Associated Press)

Last week, after the Missouri game, when the Dogs still had an outside chance at winning the SEC East if they won out and the Tigers lost two, a fellow Bulldog fan and I were discussing various alternative outcomes for the season.

What if Georgia won out, I asked, but didn’t win the SEC East?

The fan said that any season that included wins over South Carolina and LSU (both in the Top 10 at the time) as well as Florida and Tech would have to be considered a really good season.

We revisited that discussion Saturday night after the Vandy game. He said that when he had made the earlier statement, he wasn’t even considering the possibility of the Dawgs losing to the Commodores. His new view? Even with wins over South Carolina, LSU, Florida and Tech, any season that includes a loss to Vanderbilt would have to be considered a disappointment.

OK, I’ll grant that losing to Vandy in the James Franklin era doesn’t carry nearly the shame that it once did, but I can see his point. A great season for the Bulldogs shouldn’t include a loss to any of the teams that normally inhabit the lower half of the SEC East.

Still, you can make a pretty good case that, in a season that’s seen Georgia devastated by a ridiculous string of serious injuries, a 9-3 regular season record and a chance to notch a 10th win in a bowl should be considered a pretty good season.

Shouldn’t it?

Now, let me be clear here: I’m not predicting the Dogs are going to win out; this is my blue sky scenario. I recognize that even an injury-plagued Florida team with the conference’s worst offense is going to be a major challenge. Those games in Jacksonville always are. And, barring vast improvement in the play of the defense and special teams, Auburn right now is looking to be a likely loss.

Georgia no doubt also will play down to Kentucky’s level and make that one tight. And who knows how Todd Grantham’s young charges will react to Tech’s gimmick offense.

But it’s about time the 2013 Dogs got a few breaks going their way, and, if that happens, a 9-3 record wouldn’t be too shabby. As Aaron Murray said this week, “I think we can be proud if we go out there and finish the season strong, go 9-3. Who knows what might happen with Missouri, they still have five very tough conference games to play, who knows what happens. But if not, we’re 9-3 playing in a great bowl game, and 10-3, I think that’d be a great year.”

If the SEC East remains out of reach, what would it take for you to consider the 2013 season a successful one?

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Do you agree with him? Can any season when Georgia doesn’t win the SEC East be considered a great year? Or is this season already marked as a disappointment, despite the Dogs having two impressive wins over Top 10 teams? And, if not a great year, what would it take for you to consider the 2013 season a successful one?

Feel free to vote in the poll and/or share your views in the comments.

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460 comments Add your comment

Cuz

October 23rd, 2013
9:52 am

A win over Florida and Tech and the keys to Grantham’s office.

SimpleDawg

October 23rd, 2013
9:57 am

Run the table……..all the way through he bowl game.

Would love to see Gurley gain 1,000+ yards, and Murray break SC TD record.

What appeared to be such a promising year was derailed by injuries, poor defense, and bad ’special’ teams play. Gotta get a Special Teams coach!

JB

October 23rd, 2013
9:57 am

14-0 ought to be goal every year. That is over, but I know the football program needs to look inward….and maybe outward to make some fundamental changes to improve in many areas. Good programs don’t beat LSU one week and go to Vandy a lose 2 weeks later. They just don’t. Richt is little like Obama in the fact he talks a good game about making improvements, but you don’t see it. The defense is just awful. Special teams is the worst in the SEC and the OL, experienced and seasoned is poorly coached. And Bobo needs drug testing after last week. Coach Richt has a boss. I hope he see’s it. Some changes need to be made. Maybe not get Rid of Richt, but status quo ain’t working

Bingo

October 23rd, 2013
9:58 am

This season is done.

It’s now about 2014.

How many reps does Hutson Mason get?

How many young guys get reps?

That’s hw you measure success now.

It’s really the only thng you can do in such a horrible rebuilding season.

The Seniors do not deserve to continue to start, based on the 4-3 start. They have showed horrendous leadership.

It’s not about the Seniors, it’s about what’s in the LONG TERM best interests of UGA.

hOPEFULLY, TURNOVER MACHINE mURRAY HAS THROWN HIS LAST INTERCEPTION and pass FOR uga.

SimpleDawg

October 23rd, 2013
9:59 am

*the* bowl game…..

*SEC* TD record….

Agree that Grantham must go…..

Bingo

October 23rd, 2013
10:00 am

1. Fix the turnover problems on offense and defense
2. Fix 3rd downs on offense and defense

how?
1. Bench Murray
2. Go to zone defense on 3rd down

red5.ws

October 23rd, 2013
10:02 am

If Gurley, Bennett and Rumph all return and are healthy enough the dawgs can certainly run the table from here.

Bingo

October 23rd, 2013
10:02 am

Mason has GOT to get reps, Murray’s turnovers will cost the season, when it was all on the line he failed the test so many times, the Murray experiement is OVER.

On 3rd down defense, got to use a lot more disguise, go zone defense, but run a lot of variations off it like LSU does.

Bingo

October 23rd, 2013
10:03 am

Nurray was ranked last in interceptions in 2011
90th in 2012
Last in 2013

Richt will lose the team if he continues to start the turnover machine.

dawgface

October 23rd, 2013
10:05 am

You might as well be talking about winning the lottery. UGA hasn’t played well in Jax (win or lose) since, what, 1992 and that was a loss. Add to that the ‘Mark mojo’ of Muschamp not having yet beaten UGA and UF playing a backup QB and the UF game is a likely loss. Auburn looks like they’ll hang 50 on this defense and do we really want to think about a defense that can’t line up, play assignments, tackle or contain the edge playing against a triple option offense? I love that the kids don’t sound defeated but this team looks destined for a 6-6 record.

JB

October 23rd, 2013
10:06 am

I would bet a months pay that Grantham comes back. It’s not Richt’s MO to fire anyone. McGarity went to war with Richt to get rid of Martinez. Don’t see that happening again. No one knows more than McGarity that this his his watch to run the Athletic Dept. and he is giving Richt the rope. Mark is well well thought of by the Athletic Board and the Administration, and firing him with a .750 percentage ain’t gonna happen. 6-6 this year and a loss to Tech wouldn’t. Rant on, but it would have to get a whole lot worse than this.

NC Dawg

October 23rd, 2013
10:08 am

Win out…but that loss to Vandy is tough to deal with and inexcusable.

JB

October 23rd, 2013
10:10 am

Rumph ain’t played, so asking for him is fruitless to me. It took the kid from Tenn who left last year 2 years to develop at WR. Bennett is who I’m looking for. Sure hands

dawgfan

October 23rd, 2013
10:11 am

A new head coach.

gomdawg

October 23rd, 2013
10:13 am

stupid question , Hutson Mason needed to be put in game last week . It’s all about Murray breaking
records bullshzt it’s about winning the game so let our future QB play

Bright Idea

October 23rd, 2013
10:16 am

It will be a successful season when blogs like this shut down.

SimpleDawg

October 23rd, 2013
10:17 am

On Grantham:

Even with so much NFL talent, his defense was porous at best…..

Something is wrong…..fundamentally, schematically, or communicatively.

dawgfan

October 23rd, 2013
10:18 am

It’s not Richt’s MO to make any difficult decisions or to do anything difficult at all really.

I hope our players are enjoying all their time off this week. They’ve certainly earned it. Maybe they should head down to the pool for some high dives or work on some sideline dance moves for the CBS cameras in the Florida game. I’d hate to think there might be consequences during practice for sloppy play during games. That’d be awful.

This is who we are and what we’ve become under Richt.

JB

October 23rd, 2013
10:19 am

What concerns me about the Florida game is the NEED and MUST HAVE for Muschamp to win this game. It’s a must. His “free ride tickets” in Florida are running out fast……..And the Georgia team I saw in Nashville almost appeared to be looking at their watch during the game. Kind of like that bowl game up there 3 years ago when UCF beat them. They go to Jacksonville with that mind set, that very average Florida team will win.. I’m sorry, but Auburn is good. Their offense it’s a whole lot better than Vandy’s. That will likely be a L. Dawgs could even sit home during bowl season. Not being a Debbie downer, just using my eyes.

GeoffDawg

October 23rd, 2013
10:24 am

By preseason expectations, yes it will be a disappointment unless by some miracle, we get to Atlanta. By rejiggered expectations in light of the injury situation and the way the defense stubbornly refuses to gel, winning out with victories over all main rivals and two top ten wins would be a very good year.

dawgfan

October 23rd, 2013
10:25 am

Florida is talking about how much work they have to do before they play us. We’re talking about how pretty Gurley is and unfair targeting penalties while taking time off to relax.

We can go ahead and scratch outworking Florida off the list of reasons we could win this game. Nothing new about that though.

Tatman

October 23rd, 2013
10:26 am

Yawl are crazy if any of you think that they’re going to pull Murray. Only way he’s leaving a game is if he is injured…Might as well get off of that . While you’re at it, get off of the firing bandwagon too. That too is not going to happen…
I don’t even know what ppl come on here or any other site and keep repeating the same crap over and over…neither is going to happen! Instead of wishing for what want happen why not try to think positive and finish out the season and hope for what Murray said. 9-3 and then a bowl win..GOD I HATE GEORGA FANS!!!

David Granger

October 23rd, 2013
10:26 am

Enter your comments here

David Granger

October 23rd, 2013
10:27 am

It’s too late for the season to be considered “successful”. The best we can hope for now is “Not bad, all things considered.”

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
10:30 am

I don’t know

Richt doesn’t know

Obama doesn’t know.

We are just lost because we play down to the level of the competition. 3 yards and a cloud of field goals!! Haha! Marshall Morgan and Richt are the offences crippler!

JB

October 23rd, 2013
10:33 am

” Yawl”??….. I love it….Go Dawgs ??

UGA Insider

October 23rd, 2013
10:37 am

This is a 6-6 team. Defense and ST’s are laughing stock of the SEC.

old dog

October 23rd, 2013
10:40 am

Our Defense has been abysmal, and without or o-stars to help outscore opponents, we may even lose to Tech this year. I know everyone wants either a National Championship or a firing, and we all know this is unrealistic. However, the D has been consistantly under-performing, and the special teams are terrible, although the f.g. kicker is good. The problem is I cannot fathom is our D improving enough to help us out of the injury mode. When you win by ONLY outscoring folks it will come back to haunt you. We have entirely too many players who do not know what to do. There is a difference between the occasional blown assignment that everyone has, and the “lost-ness” if I may that so many of our defensive players have exhibited this season. If folks do not know what to do by now, including 2nd and 3rd teamers, the problem is pretty deep……….

PDawg5960

October 23rd, 2013
10:54 am

I love reading the comments of all the so called dawg fans who think they know all the solutions for Ga to win. These coaches have forgotten more about football than ANY of you know about football. For Ga to be competitive with all the injuries they have had is something to be proud of. I have seen teams lose a starting running back not nearly in Gurley’s league and the teams promising season end. Ga lost two great backs and 3 of their 4 top wideouts. 3 starters on defense missed most of the game against Vandy. Reading some of these post are funnier than Garfield.

Bulldog Born & Bred

October 23rd, 2013
11:01 am

Richt gave his players 2 days off because of off week . heck we need to go back to 2 a days we cant tackle we cant block and we literally waste every time out we have . I;m sorry but this team is a failure

Bulldog Born & Bred

October 23rd, 2013
11:06 am

South Carolina – LSU- Clemson are beginning to show our wins & close loses weren’t so great after all

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
11:18 am

Just another bone headed unexplainable loss to vandy,,,,that loss reminded me of an loss we had back in 2010… Ya know 3 years ago wasn’t to long ago? I’ve lost all fainth in Richt….he needs to get it together. Fix the damn special teams….also Richt never coaches well till he is on the hot seat. We don’t play well when we have a lead….we are to conservative….I will say a million times if I have to!

Desert Fox

October 23rd, 2013
11:31 am

You do not lose to Vandy, regardless. GA was outplayed and w/o question outcoached. Cannot blame the injuries nor the referee’s in areas where coaches (and players) control their own destiny. There is always and always will be one area of concern when GA takes the field and that is the lack of faith and confidence most fans have in this current coaching staff. As far as the rest of the season winning out would be great in spite of the challenges of being short handed on O and terrible ST and a porous D. winning out under these circumstances could be considered successful but w/that empty feeling in your gut.

old dog

October 23rd, 2013
11:32 am

Pdawg5960,
It is also apparent, sir, that the players on D have in fact forgotten much of what they know about football. If you are watching the games, then it is obvious to the novice that many of the D players do not have enough of a grasp to keep down the mistakes. Whether or not a coach has forgotten more about football than many know does not have p-squat to do with whether his understudies (players) have a grasp of what they are to do. And, if you ever played a down of football in midget league, it is obvious that many of our d guys (too many) just “ain’t gettin’ it!”

OldDawg

October 23rd, 2013
11:32 am

I also think the problem is pretty deep, and it goes to the nature of the program as much as anything. UGA is well known as a program that relies on serviceable coaching and exceptional athletes. Recruiting hasn’t been a shortcoming. UGA has a corporate style that’s risk averse and believes in giving its shareholder fans a fair return, but they’re not going to put much at risk. And what you get are a lot of 9-3 kinds of seasons. It will take a fairly radical change in how the program sees itself for UGA to rise from the second tier to become consistently elite. And that will come only after a few dramatic downturns to get a higher risk/reward coaching approach in play. So, settle down. Doesn’t appear much will change soon, and another 9-3, 8-4 season is our definition of success.

The Tide is Rolling and Nothing can Stop it

October 23rd, 2013
11:35 am

A success: Getting off your high horse and signing more players so your depth won’t be such an issue. Then quite trying to bring the entire SEC down to your mediocre level with all this oversigning crap.

The Tide is Rolling and Nothing can Stop it

October 23rd, 2013
11:38 am

Why are you guys so football stupid?!?
If you had a decent d-coordinator, you’d stop people…
If you’d sign more players and quit worrying about how many Nick Saban signs, you’d have better depth.

Is the entire state like Honey Boo Boo, or just your football fans?

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
11:42 am

The last 4 years we have now lost too.

Kentucky
Colorado
UCF
Vandy…….how pathetic and mediocre we are becoming. We are 1-2 on the road this year. Coach…whatever happened to the guy that said championships begin on the road?

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
11:47 am

Ya know their is not much difference between…Ray Goff……Jim Donnan and Mark Richt! The one difference is….that Richt found a good DC in the beginning of his career….and donnan and goff never found that good DC….if Richt hadn’t of hired BVG…..Richt wouldn’t even be at UGA any longer.

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
11:47 am

That’s right Richt would of been fired a long time ago.

Sam Robards, Comic Fan

October 23rd, 2013
11:49 am

I think it’s already too late to be considered “successful” based on the preseason expectations. That’s nothing against the team: anyone would’ve been hard-pressed to get to Atlanta with the number of major injuries we (and Florida, for that matter) have had.

Our defense isn’t helping matters, but the offensive playmakers injured on the bench is the primary reason we lost the last two weeks.

In terms of being successful based off the current situation, beating Florida for the third year in a row would be a great start, but I think we’d have to beat Auburn and Tech as well (showing clear improvement on defense and special teams in the process) in order to be considered “successful” at this point.

I think losing a fourth regular season game would definitely dip this team into the “disappointment” category.

As for what I think’ll happen? I can’t give any kind of solid guess, so I’ll play the part of the optimist and say that Gurley and Bennet give us the offensive edge (and ball control) we need, leading us to win out.

Go Dawgs!

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
11:50 am

I can’t wait to see another snap hiked over the punters head in Jacksonville….I can’t wait….woohoo!

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
11:52 am

Who care about ball control! Every time we keep the ball for longer than 2 minutes we end up kicking a FG! The offense is better when it strikes quickly!

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
11:55 am

Whatever way their is lose a ball game……we find it….I just wonder what we will do to lose in Jacksonville?

bassmaster12170

October 23rd, 2013
11:56 am

If Grantham gets fired, I will consider this a successful year.

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
11:59 am

I think buck belue was our best QB ever. His stats aren’t that impressive but he won us the mnc and has several win as a starting qb…..he did what he had to do in the passing game,……just a winner

Bulldawg35

October 23rd, 2013
12:02 pm

I would rather have jameis Winston over Murray….Winston is already big time…. And going to win a championship this year……while Murray will finish his careerin the music city bowl……Richt hurt his chance of being a better qb….because after his freshmen year…..he didn’t allow him to run anymore!

Larry Wells

October 23rd, 2013
12:08 pm

Mark Richt is the problem. Mr soft, does not demand you pay the price to be a winner. His teams always, every year, has 3 or 4 games that they are not mentally into, last year 2012, can you say South Carolina, should have lost to Kentucky in 2012, and does the head Coach or any assistant call them out, no, Shawn Williams, a player, called them out, not one Coach had the guts to do it. What about 2011? Did’nt show up against Boise, South Carolina, 2nd half of LSU SEC Championship game, every year, same thing, it is what it is. Do I hate Mark Richt? No, his is a good man, but a terrible coach, and he will never get better, 2 or 3 or 4 games each year his team will play as if they would rather be some where else, and not interested in playing football that day, if he stays, it will never change. And the coaches will say, its not us, we teach them, and they have to execute. I’m sure it was’nt the Auburn Coaches last year when Auburn lost all those games, and they were fired, and now with new Coaches, SURPRISE, guess what, Auburn is winning again, but its not the Coaching. If its not Coaching, why did Mach Brown fire his defensive co or? I guess maybe it is the Coach, since they are playing better defense now? Come on Bulldawg fans, it is what it is, if we keep an average Head coach, we will be average. Check the RECORD. Lets hire a CHAMPIOMSHIP Coach, for one of the GREATEST Schools, not just in America, but the World. Love my DAWGS!!!!!!!!

ARdawg

October 23rd, 2013
12:09 pm

There is nothing to look forward to per se’ except to watch some football with nothing to cheer about. With the Vandy loss whisked away any slim hope we had of an East title. Winning out and a chicken bowl doesn’t compensate for that

old dog

October 23rd, 2013
12:34 pm

Injuries are a part of the game; losing (unfortunately) is a part of the game. Missed assignments (occasionally) are a part of the game. However, when your folks do not know what to do too much of the time (as opposed to just getting beaten on a play or making an occasional mistake) the problem is deeper. Our D philosophy is not catching on, and it is not working……………period. THE DEFENSIVE PLAYERS FROM STARTER TO SCOUT TEAM SHOULD ALL KNOW WHAT THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO DO! Too many of them do not. Therefore, the problem is deeper than lack of D-talent. It may be the system, or the coaching (or lack thereof.) Y’all been watchin’ the games?