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.
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.”
Feel free to vote in the poll and/or share your views in the comments.
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— Bill King, Junkyard Blawg