Wooten’s debut . . . dancing Dogs . . . and stray facts

One ball was thrown to him in the Arkansas game. Overthrown, actually.  Then Rantavious Wooten made his first reception for UGA in the second quarter of the Arizona State game, a spectacular catch for a 27-yard gain on 3rd-and-12.

“When I caught it,”  Wooten  said a couple of days ago, “it felt like having a burden lifted off my shoulders. I felt relieved, and I felt excited. I just wanted to keep playing.”

He made the second catch of his collegiate career late in the fourth quarter, a crucial 11-yard gainer on 3rd-and-4 early in the drive that led to the game-winning, game-ending field goal.

Obviously, Wooten had gained the coaches’ confidence with his work on the practice field — a  prerequisite for a freshman to be called upon in a tight game, let alone in a game-deciding drive.

“I knew what I had to do, and I focused and worked real hard and did my best every day to prove to the coaches that I can make the plays and am ready to play,” Wooten said.  “That is what I’ve had my mindset on every week.”

He said he had “a great week of practice” before the Arkansas game. “Everything seemed to be falling into place for me, and then I felt like I’d get my chance.”

And how is the other receiver in the 2009 signing class, Marlon Brown, doing?  “He’s actually stepping up,” Wooten said. “He’s catching the ball. . . . I expect him to play soon.”

—————————————

As you know, nothing goes unnoticed or unanalyzed in Bulldog Nation.  Example: some players  dancing to the music that blared through Sanford Stadium during timeouts late in last Saturday’s game.   Mark Richt was asked his feelings about it this week, both on his radio call-in show and in a meeting with reporters.

“Well, that’s a good question,” Richt said to a  caller.  “If you go by how it affected our defensive players,  Scott [Howard] just mentioned that in the last four drives of the game we held [Arizona State] to minus-13 yards. So if that is going to be the result, I don’t mind them doing that.

“I don’t think it’s something that is a lack of discipline or a lack of respect. I think there are a lot of guys that have got the spirit inside of them, and if that gets rid of a little bit of nervous energy before the next play or whatever, that’s fine with me. If you noticed, the other team was doing the same doggone thing.

“I don’t think it’s that big of a deal,” Richt said, “but I’m sure there are about 50 percent of the folks out there who think it is.”

He added: “If the fans don’t like it, they need to start booing when [players are] dancing instead of cheering.”

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Stray facts:

– Georgia and LSU have met in football just 27 times despite both being charter members of the SEC.

–  LSU leads the series 14-12-1, including a 6-6 record in Athens, where the Tigers have  not won since 1987.  Georgia has won the past three meetings and six of the past eight. None of which will mean a thing on Saturday, of course.

– LSU says only seven of its current players were born when the Tigers last won in Athens.

– Georgia’s Drew Butler leads the nation in punting with a 50.1-yard average.

– LSU’s starting center is T-Bob Hebert, the son of former Falcons and Saints quarterback Bobby Hebert.  He was born in Louisiana and grew up an LSU fan, but played his high school ball at Greater Atlanta Christian.

– Georgia is 0-3 in its last three games against top-10 teams (Alabama and Florida last year, Oklahoma State this year).

A.J. Green isn’t the only receiver entering Saturday’s game on a hot streak.  LSU’s Brandon LaFell has caught five touchdown passes in four games.

– I think I mentioned this in a story earlier in the week:  LSU safety Chad Jones and defensive end Rahim Alem (formerly Al Jones) are brothers.

– LSU sophomore Jordan Jefferson is the youngest starting quarterback in the SEC, 19 years and one month.

– Both LSU and Georgia have struggled to get their running games going, so consider this: The Tigers are 28-0 under Les Miles when rushing for 100-plus yards and holding their opponent to less than 100.

– Points off turnovers: Opponents 54, Georgia 6. That’s crazy.

——————————————-

And finally, here’s the lineup for book signings in the UGA Bookstore before Saturday’s game:

10 a.m. until noon: Larry Munson (”From Herschel to a Hobnail Boot”) and Herschel Walker (”Breaking Free”).

12:30 p.m. until 2:30 p.m.: Vince Dooley (”Dooley’s Play Book”) and Fran Tarkenton (”Every Day is Game Day”).

Also, Kevin Butler and David Greene will be available for autographs from 1:30 to 2:30.

123 comments Add your comment

Michael Dawgs for life

October 2nd, 2009
1:08 am

Marlon Brown needs to be put on the field during last year’s high school all american game he was the best one on the field they have to put him out there. And final score of the game will be GEORGIA 45 LSU 38. If Georgia wins this game they have a legitimate shot at winning the SEC. Florida has a lot of problems(there recivers suck, their running game is average, tim tebow is hurt)

ctown dawg

October 2nd, 2009
1:30 am

Second yes! I personally dont mind the team dancing to me it shows they are loose and not playing tight so i agree with richt. It reminds me a lot of 2007 i hope we can back it up like that team did.

GO DAWGS!!!!!!

BigDawg

October 2nd, 2009
2:36 am

Remember the 2007 season with Souldier Boy w/ players dancing and players trouncing UF and others! We were ranked #4, the top two teams lost and Les cryer Miles milked his way into the BCS chumpionship game. UGA was def the best team at the end of the season, but Less Miles took the Urban Cryer route of influencing voters. Playoff system now, eliminate the weak (Cin. Boise, BYU, USF, OSU, any ACC team, any team from the Small Ten, any team from the PU$$ Ten, any team who does not play any top 10 or top 20 teams, bye bye ACC, little 10 and pu$$ ten. SEC football is KING, 3 of top 5 from SEC? Go figure! SEC championship should be for BCS National Championship. See UF, LSU, UF. So sorry for other sorry leagues! Nothing trumps SEC. Enjoy your dresses!!!

slobodan

October 2nd, 2009
2:37 am

Off course I want the dawgs to stuff LSU runners. But I want better route recognition and awareness of where the ball is going by the pass defense. Baccari Rambo showed signs of this kind of intuitive, ball hawking player; besides his interception, he jumped a short route to the ASU tight end and broke it up. Remember UGA walk-on safety Tray Battle’s last 2 regular season games in 2007? Remember Paul Oliver being everywhere the ball was? These are the last 2 ball hawks I remember. These type players don’t have to be track stars; they just know how to play football.

69 Dawg

October 2nd, 2009
4:15 am

0 and 3 against top ten teams the last two years. Want to know why? It’s Willie’s backpeddeling, be afraid to use, play the same schemes, lay off the receivers defense. We’re a second tier team now thanks to Willie and CMR’s reluctance to show determination and courage and fire Willie. It might light a fire under other Georgia coaches if the fire
Willie match was lit. How can we Georgia fans sit back, watch what we’re watching and not be livid with what’s going on. Do you really see our Defense staying with LSU, Florida and Tech and how concerned should we be about Tennessee and Vanderbilt? Hasn’t CMR caused us enought aggrevation and misery making us watch Willie’s poor performance game after game after game after game? I’m losing support for CMR and Damon Evans. I’ll shout it again … FIRE WILLIE NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

TEXAS DOG

October 2nd, 2009
7:14 am

THE DATA doesn’t lie…every year after Van G left under Wille the defense has gotten worse….every year worse! DATA can’t lie…the data is not emotional…THIS IS A NO BRAINER…..IF Richt can’t see this problem then he is blinded by friendship….WILLIE MUST GO!!!!

TEXAS DOG

October 2nd, 2009
7:15 am

FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THINGS DAWG! FIRE WILLIE!!!! FIRE WILLE!!!!!!

Dawg Pound

October 2nd, 2009
7:24 am

Let the boys dance you old fogies!! Good grief, their 18-21 yr olds

bad brad

October 2nd, 2009
7:57 am

Don’t think I will be going to the bookstore before the game. It’s a zoo without all the autograph seekers that will be there this week.

Motown Hound

October 2nd, 2009
7:58 am

Dawgs put it together and waltz to a win. Ball is protected, flags stay in back pockets, defense holds, offense scores, tailbacks run and kick-offs stay in bounds.

Dawg heaven.

chazzo

October 2nd, 2009
8:28 am

Whatever it takes to get a W…

NC Dawg

October 2nd, 2009
8:30 am

Marlon Brown is a great player and will be for the Dawgs! But, he should not play until he has earned the right to play! CMR will do the right thing at the end of the year, if the defense doesn’t get better! You are correct stats don’t lie! Go Dawgs!!!!

senoiadawgs

October 2nd, 2009
8:47 am

If winning and crying is what it takes to get the MNC game with a loss or two then CMR needs to break out the tissues and fire Martinez

AltamahaDawg

October 2nd, 2009
8:53 am

69, what are you doing about it?

Keydet Dawg

October 2nd, 2009
9:00 am

QUESTION: What is up with Washaun Ealey? I have heard that he has great balance and change of direction, able to make the first guy miss. We are missing that this year. Is he injured, not ready, fumblitis, struggling academically etc?

It is hard to put a freshman in at tailback, but I would love to find a diamond in the ruff on game day. Sometimes you have to take that chance and give him the opportunity. I believe this kid is the best back we have, maybe a game changer.

AltamahaDawg

October 2nd, 2009
9:00 am

….and you seriously blame the OSU loss this year on the defense? Really? Or Fl last year when our 1st string offense failed to score a single point? The Alabama loss was 50/50 blame to anyone being honest.

timthebrave

October 2nd, 2009
9:01 am

Let them dance….what is this footloose

George

October 2nd, 2009
9:04 am

Let them dance! Thats why we get the stud athletes year in and year out. They come here to win, to get ready for the NFL, and to have fun. Sick of hearing about us being the hip hop team of the SEC. Who cares, they’re college kids, let them have fun.

senoiadawgs

October 2nd, 2009
9:07 am

The fire Martinez does not come from losses only. Usually it comes more from our wins. Altamaha, I am the first to come on here and say a better whooped our tail and not blame the coaches or the players. How can you see all of the talent and the field and think that it is coached well? How can see watch a game and receivers for the other team not have a Dawg within 10 yards and think they are coached well? How can you explain a good not great D Line and LB’s hardly ever getting pressure on the QB even when there is a blitz? I can tell you, coaching

AltamahaDawg

October 2nd, 2009
9:29 am

No, it doesnt come from losses. They rarely do that.

And I was specifically asking him about the comments as to why we lost our last 3 against top 10 teams. Zone defense appearantly, despite the facts of what actually happened in those games.

And why can’t anyone try to level the conversation to what is logical and truthful without being accused of saying the defense is well coached? Did I say that? Have I ever said that? Does everyone have to fall into the “fire somebody” or blind homer category? Frankly I find either pretty boring. If you could go back and read my stuff over the past several years, you will see I am critical at times, but I usually take the whole “hey our offense has been just as responsible for any of our losses in the past few year” angle. You would also know that I have been particularly upset anytime we fumble. To me that is far far worse than any blown coverage. The impact to the game is certainly worse. It’s happened so often this year, what can you say anymore.

But if By chance Richt were to read any of this stuff….let’s just say he would…..80% of the negative stuff is so over the top, so totally devoid of reality, so lacking any admission of circumstances, if i were him, it would make me dismiss every bit of it as pure whinning.

And I will say again, complaining about something and doing nothing about it is a lot worse than just not complaining.

Keydet Dawg

October 2nd, 2009
9:29 am

Funny note, I wrote Will Muschamp, found his email on the University of Texas web directory. Stated ” I would love to see him between the hedges again, coaching-up the defense”.

He stated in reply: “I am pulling for the dawgs to get better-Will”

A pc statement, but he knows there is a problem there. As a former dawg player, UGA should really work behind the scenes to get him coaching defense. If I were Richt, I would give him a call and have a back-up plan. Will bleeds red&black, I am sure he would listen. If he knew he would come to UGA, hell offer him the keys to Sanford stadium. They would have to offer higher dollar pay, as he has been given the keys to the longhorn stadium when Mack Brown retires.

If I had Will as a back-up and a few more other coaches as options. Hell guys, there a ton’s of coaches UGA could snag on defense. The mountain, wac and 1-aa are full of talent that would love the opportunity to get to the next level. I would definitely sit Willie down & put him on a “PIP”, Performance Improvement Plan

example:

Defensive current rankings, defensive categories:
-Total offense yardage allowed:
-Total offensive plays allowed:
-Total offensive TOP allowed:
-# of three and outs won per game:
-Rush defense allowed:
-Pass defense allowed:
-Sacks:
-Defensive turnover recovery (how many defense forced and recovered):
-Opponents Touchdowns per red zone attempts:

Three game corrective action plan:
-Refer to the list above. Then set goals and minimum standards for each category. You want to set goals that improve the defense and are attainable. After you list current stats and 3 performance improvement plan statistics. Richt will have to review where Willie is weekly to meet his goal, because if Willie screws up game 1 of his 3 game plan. Then he has to really make-up for it on game 2 and/or game 3.

The last step of the plan would be if he achieved or did not achieve his performance minimums. At this point he would be placed on another plan if needed and a specified period of time to correct, it would state that if not corrected in this period of time termination would follow. Thereby giving him the opportunity to prove he is qualified for the job. It is that simple, it works in corporate America and it will work in football.

You either learn how to motivate, manager and lead others or you will be managed and lead right out the door.

Wishful thinking I guess.

azdawg

October 2nd, 2009
9:33 am

If dancing leads to a W, then rock on and dance all night.

Boykin should be saved for special teams, KO returns especially. He cannot cover LSU’s receivers. Replace w/Cummings and also use Rambo on D.

If Willie backpeddles we’re doomed. He and his D must step up like last years game w/a few pick 6’s but LSU has new QB that can run as good as he passes.

Joe Cox is probably facing his toughest test yet. LSU’s CB’s are big and fast w/good hands. O line must protect him so he can find the open receiver. And please, Bobo, use some imagination on critical 3rd down and one’s!

The Dawgs can beat LSU if they don’t implode on themselves w/costly TO’s, play smart, and have their best defensive stand of the season.

elvis

October 2nd, 2009
9:43 am

Why wouldn’t they dance?

Seriously, it is not about being solemn and scowling until you start the play. I hope we dance one LSU’s SEC grave.

Charlotte Dawg

October 2nd, 2009
9:59 am

Keydet Dawg, you are in mgmt, but I actually think it’s a great plan!! It let’s him know it’s “put up or shut up”!

41 38 49 38 45 24 37 41 17

October 2nd, 2009
10:37 am

Those who are upset with the dancing issue need not worry because it will be resolved to none this weekend. 28 – 0 LSU in the first qtr. Willie will be back to normal looking clueless!

Dawg Dude

October 2nd, 2009
10:38 am

If something doesn’t change on defense this week, i.e. more blitz, less bend dont break play in the secondary etc. etc. then we will lose by 3 touchdowns atleast……..im thinking we are gonna lose.

41 38 49 38 45 24 37 41 17

October 2nd, 2009
10:50 am

Remember great defenses win Championships period.

HBTD

October 2nd, 2009
11:32 am

LOL! Hey “Numbers Boy”, don’t you have something else to do? I bet you’re doing well in your freshman math class this yearm and I’m sure your parents are very proud of your mathmatical accomplishments. Keep up the good work and maybe you’ll one day be accepted into that “great” Trade school down on N. Avenue where you can follow your very own football program.

JP

October 2nd, 2009
11:32 am

As a Gator fan dealing with a bye week, I think UGA hangs 30+ on LSU. if the D can make a few stops, they ought to win by at least 10 points…

1992 Dawg

October 2nd, 2009
11:44 am

This one falls into the category of one of the games that we always seem to lose under Willie’s direction. Our road record has been stellar, but give us an SEC team, playing at home, especially when UGA is favored and it’s a recipe for a loss. Think about it. Alabama last year, in recent years..Tennessee, South Carolina… the list goes on. I think this is a statement game, a must win. If not, I question the direction our program is headed. Too many top 10 recruiting classes, way too many athletes, no excuses!

matt

October 2nd, 2009
11:55 am

Motown,

You’re pretty optimistic…I like it. Go Dawgs!

AltamahaDawg

October 2nd, 2009
12:01 pm

Just had this conversation yesterday at lunch with Dawg brethren……..the dancing has nothing to do with the outcome of the game or the direction of the program. They don’t dance at practice and that’s where it matters.

However, given that half the stadium is fat old white guys, and they already have plenty to grumble about, I think if I were Coach I would speak to the PA guy and say…..hey you know….tie game, might NOT be the time to crank that stuff out. It’s not like he asked them to do that, and would have been awkward as hell to have bolted over there to stop his players from responding to music playing on the loudspeakers.

I do love the line though, “maybe the fans could make up thier minds”.

HBTD

October 2nd, 2009
12:22 pm

AltamahaDawg-I guess I’m probably one of those fat old white guys at 51. I think you’re right on with your point about the timing of the music. I’d like to go one step further and suggest the “forced entertainment” has gotten completely out of control. There is NOTHING wrong with just catching your breath and talking to your neighbor during a time out. I for one do NOT need all the loud music, find UGA under the french fry, replay of great UGA moments over the last 50 years, etc. Years ago, the PA announcer would use that time to announce scores around the country.

Am I in the minority on this issue of being force fed with “entertainment” whenever there is a lull or time out in the game.

georgiagirl

October 2nd, 2009
1:03 pm

DANCE DAWGS DANCE DAWGS
Don’t worry about the old folks and their bitching.
Keep up the motivation, enjoy your life as a player.
This is 2009 not 1950.
DANCE DANCE DANCE

AltamahaDawg

October 2nd, 2009
1:22 pm

Me too, or as I like say, a ghost to the co-eds.

I could live without some of the fluff too, but I notice that the kids in the crowd can find UGA every single time. We didn’t grow up quite as plugged in, so I think the presentation is just trying to keep up with the times. Including hip-hop.

I think if folks were real honest…..nobody would be upset or worried about character, if it were 1983 and some of the players were air jamming to Blue Oyster Cult, The Reaper, while showing Terry Hoage’s big hits on the grainy replay screen.

Harry Dawg

October 2nd, 2009
1:33 pm

If they danced and jived to Up Around The Bend by Creedence CW Revival, then it would be fine.

Gooooooooooooooooooooo Dawgs

UGA class of 73

AltamahaDawg

October 2nd, 2009
2:10 pm

just using the term “jived” kind of sold you out on Harry. I didn’t think I could get that opening riff from BOC out of my head, but you just replaced it.

Tom Jones

October 2nd, 2009
2:27 pm

I think Im gonna dance now!

Burdell

October 2nd, 2009
2:34 pm

Keydet–

Wishful thinking…Will is not going anywhere, anytime soon!

On a side note…I hear that his old high school has already offered him DC…you know he still bleeds “purple and white”….

Burdell

October 2nd, 2009
2:41 pm

GeorgiaGirl–

Those old folks that you speak of…they pump way more money into UGA Athletics than the youngsters.

Careful what you wish for….

Jake7

October 2nd, 2009
2:49 pm

We SEEM to have a PROBLEM executing on BOTH D & O….MAYBE we CAN DANCE………..HAMMERTIME!!

Festus

October 2nd, 2009
2:54 pm

Yawls need to give us old folks a tune to daince to. I lykes John Denver’s “Thainks Gawd Ima Kuntry Boy”!

DawgGirl32

October 2nd, 2009
3:06 pm

I miss Soulja Boy.

Hey Willie Haters- You might want to also consider that opposing offenses have changed a lot in the past decade. A lot more spread, option, mobile QBs, etc. BVG didn’t have to coach against a lot of those. Has the yardage we’ve given up and points we’ve given up increased over the past few years? Yes, they have. But they also have for the other SEC teams too.

Old Geezer

October 2nd, 2009
3:07 pm

For what its worth, old folks, aka geezers, do the heavy lifting at colleges, churches, and paying taxes.

TMC DAWG

October 2nd, 2009
3:50 pm

Enter your comments here Dance or not, I think we need new coaching,

Cuz

October 2nd, 2009
4:03 pm

How about a little Dr. Funkenstein? Just what the Doctor ordered.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0JbUP-skb7E&feature=related

dawgster

October 2nd, 2009
4:07 pm

I believe it is wishful thinking that Will M. will come here, he will always be a dawg, but it is my understanding he could very well be in line to take over for Mack Brown at Texas when the opportunity is there, other than that, if the position were to open up here at Georgia, i don’t believe he would make that move if the head coaching position is his at sometime down the rode, but who really knows at this point…As far as the dancing, i didn’t care for it at the time and the fact we were tied and had lost momentum, i can tell you what Coach Erk would have done or said about that, i do love emotion and do think these kids should be able to show it, but do it on the field or if you are sticking it to you opponent, but tied at 17 to start the 4th quarter, just not sure, don’t want to make a huge deal about it and do like the comment from Coach Richt about how the fans could respond….

georgiagirl

October 2nd, 2009
4:22 pm

Burdell,
I guess you love to put the money thing around, well money does not get you everything, because you can lose it just as fast as you got.
And you and your money do not own these young guy even if you think you do. I said DANCE DAWGS, I said nothing about money so get real, oh and by the I am 51 years and red head, so keep your money I am just fine with my happy life and I love to see people enjoy life not throw their money in my face.
A lot of my friends put alot of money in Georgia too big shot.

GO DAWGS DANCE DANCE DANCE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOVE FOOTBA

UGA '03

October 2nd, 2009
4:25 pm

DawgGirl32,

That could be the worst justification for Willie’s failures I’ve ever heard. The Dawgs defensive rankings under Willie are shameful when compared to BVG; but, MUCH more importantly, those statistics are equally distasteful w/re to other, current defenses in both the SEC and the remainder of the nation. Have a little compasion for the people around you and spare them the “don’t be mean to Willie, it’s just so much harder to coach defense than it was 5 yrs ago” babble. Nevermind your absurd assumptions w/re to the novelty superiority of offenses like the spread, option, etc.Traditional drop back passing and running b/w the tackles is far more problematic for Willie anyway.

georgiagirl

October 2nd, 2009
4:27 pm

The old geezers I know are really nice people, and they have money but they don’t throw the money thing in people face.

GO DAWGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Who knows I might the nurse you have one day, kindness, dear sir, kindness.