Jarvis Jones thinks Dogs’ defense just as good as LSU’s, ‘if not better’

Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones (L) may have inadverently threw down a challenge to LSU when he talked up the Dogs' defense on Monday. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones (L) may have inadverently threw down a challenge to LSU when he talked up the Dogs' defense on Monday. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

ATHENS – It was a simple question that was posed to Georgia’s Jarvis Jones during a teleconference call with reporters on Monday. The sophomore outside linebacker was asked if he thought the Bulldogs’ defense was somewhat overshadowed by LSU’s and how he thought the two units stacked up.

Jones answered it quickly and honestly.

“I mean, everybody praises LSU defense, but I know we’ve got a pretty good defense,” said Jones, the SEC’s leader in quarterback sacks with 13.5. “We’re not cocky at all. We’re just going to play. We do our job and get after it on the field. We like having fun. We love playing football. We’re aggressive. We play just as well as them. A lot of people don’t give us credit [for] how we play. I think we play two different styles.”

Then came the line that caught everybody’s attention.

Said Jones: “I think our defense is just as good as theirs, if not better.”

That statement, tweeted out by several reporters, reverberated all the way to Baton Rouge. LSU wide receiver Russell Shephard quickly noticed it on Twitter and forwarded it to his teammates with the message, “is this guy serious?” That was followed by more than a few “ha-ha’s” and multiple exclamation points.

Suddenly, a little interleague argument has developed between the teams about which one has the best defense. Not surprisingly, Jones’ teammates have come to his defense, so to speak.

“He said it, so I’m going to back him up,” Georgia safety Bacarri Rambo said. “I’m going to be right there with him. That’s my brother, that’s my family, so whatever he says we’re all going to back him up. . . . I also can say I believe we have one of the best defenses in the country, right up there with the LSUs. We have some very talented guys on the defensive side of the ball, too, and I can back it up when I say that.”

Said junior linebacker Christian Robinson: “Look at the numbers. We’re hanging. We’re up there in numbers, too. If we go out there and do what we’re supposed to do on this Saturday, we can end up better than they are not just in the numbers but by winning the game. You don’t want to get into word battles, but if they want to go and say things like [Shephard said], that’s the worse thing to do. There has been a lot of teams that go out there and run their mouth a lot and get beat.”

LSU is ranked slightly ahead of Georgia in every major defensive category and the Tigers have done it against a tougher overall schedule. But the Bulldogs are no slouches. They, too, rank as a Top 10 defense. Following are the latest national rankings:

LSU——-Category———Georgia

2——–Total Def.———-5

4——–Rush Def.———-6

3——-Pass Eff. D———-4

2——–Scoring D———10

6——–Passing D———11

16———Sacks————17

The one thing Georgia feels it may have going for it on Saturday is a more diversified offense. The Tigers are very much a run-first offense while the Bulldogs throw the ball a little more. Georgia feels the Tigers’ propensity for wanting to run the ball straight at opponents with their bevy of big backs and dare them to stop it actually plays into its hands.

“They’re not going to go away from their game scheme, so we’ve just got to bow up,” Georgia safety Bacarri Rambo said. “We’ve got to keep attacking and making tackles and not allow big plays. We know they’re going to run the ball, so we’ve just got to be prepared for it.”

Said Robinson: “I think we’ve shown we can hang with teams that run it. Auburn relied heavily on the run and we shut them down. LSU is not shy about their run game. That’s all they want to do and then they’ve got some receivers that can go get it. So we’ll take the challenge, not in a cocky way, but we can hang. So we’ll be ready.”

Said Jones: “It’s a challenge for us as a defense. But you always want to be challenged and you want to step up accomplish those challenges. So it’s going to be a big day for us and we’re looking forward to it.”

An intriguing matchup just got more intriguing, don’t you think?

683 comments Add your comment

Taco Meat

November 29th, 2011
9:37 am

Taco Meat

November 29th, 2011
9:39 am

I like Jarvis’ attitude and confidence. That’s what we need out of our whole team. Hopefully they back it up on Saturday! Go DAWGS!!

Jeremy Wallace

November 29th, 2011
9:41 am

Junior Dawg

November 29th, 2011
9:42 am

thatta way JJ. I don’t have any expectations for this game, but I do feel that we have the ability to play with them. The only difference, I feel, between UGA and LSU is consistency. We play at top tier most of the time, but then fail on special teams occasionally, or huge blown route. They play top tier almost always. Their numbers show that for sure.

JB

November 29th, 2011
9:44 am

I can appreciate the confidence but I’d rather he’d not made it quite so public. But, that said, now he and the D need to go do their thing.

Their O really isn’t all that good, so don’t expect them to score all that much.

HBTD!!!

Truth

November 29th, 2011
9:44 am

Go get’em Dawgs!!

Fred

November 29th, 2011
9:45 am

Georgia has the talent to keep up. They have shown at times they have the heart. I wish i had more confidence about which team is going to show up, the “good’ Dawg team or the one that played only 1 half each game for a while.

But I can’t wait til Saturday to watch. Looks like the Dawgs are coming to scrap so those little kitty kats from Louisiana better watch out.

DP

November 29th, 2011
9:48 am

What a Delusional Dawg. Jones is the only Dawg defender who would see significant playing time for LSU. Christian Robinson would be on LSU’s scout team.

State WIldcat

November 29th, 2011
9:48 am

State WIldcat SON!

j

November 29th, 2011
9:49 am

Time to get back to drug testing. What a complete joke! LSU’s second team is better than UGAy’s D!

TnDawg

November 29th, 2011
9:49 am

Hey, let’s get it done. Go Dawgs

SimpleDawg

November 29th, 2011
9:49 am

Talk is cheap……let’s not worry about whistling in the graveyard. Just let the play talk.

LSU’s stats are against better competition, granted, but that doesn’t mean that the Dawgs can’t win.

Let’s just play the game and see what happens.

Delbert D.

November 29th, 2011
9:50 am

I think that statement is Jones expressing his bravado. No reason to argue about it as they will actually play this game.

DP

November 29th, 2011
9:52 am

Substitute Alabama, Arkansas, Oregon and West Virginia on Georgia’s schedule for Boise State, South Carolina, Kentucky and Vanderbilt and imagine how Georgia’s defensive stats would compare to LSU’s. Is Jarvis Jones being drug tested this week?

Texas Dawg

November 29th, 2011
9:52 am

Actions speak louder than words…..I hope we action from our Defense and not a lot of jaw jacking!

We have not beat a good team in a long time and I would like to see us do well in this game!

THe key to this game is Murry……..which Murry shows up……

Go DOGS!!!!!!!!!!

Chip is teh AWESOME

November 29th, 2011
9:53 am

I hope JJ tattoos Shepard w/a helmet right between the numbers. I wish Obama would give Louisiana back to the French.

Dap01

November 29th, 2011
9:53 am

I also liked Rambo’s response. Physically our defense has EVERYTHING.

UGA Insider

November 29th, 2011
9:55 am

UGA 24
LSU 20

LSU and Bama will pay in the MNC as the 2nd and 3rd best teams in the SEC…… UGA will get stuck with this year’s Hawaii which is Houston in the Sugar Bowl. Makes no sense but that is the scenario that will happen.

ole yeller

November 29th, 2011
9:57 am

I’ll say this, If you don’t believe you can do something, you usually can’t get it done. It’s not much of a dog that want wag it’s own tail. No bost , No brag, just facts. Talk is cheap and this game want be played on the playground of lip service. I do think it will be a great game and I think UGA will suprise a lot of folks out of LSU.

DawgLifer

November 29th, 2011
9:58 am

If LSU thinks they’re about to come in and wear this defense down they’re sadly mistaken. The Dawg’s are impressively deep as well as LSU on defense but I believe our offense is significantly better. We have a bevy of weapons. GoDawgs! Sic’Em!

why not...

November 29th, 2011
9:58 am

@ DP. Boise and SC have much offenses than Bama and WVa. Top 10 vs Top 10. Stats are just paper, the game is played on the field. Where’s your team playing on Sat?

DrDawg

November 29th, 2011
10:01 am

If the Dawgs don’t fall for the trick play or allow a 98 yard kick-off return, they will win. Special teams will be the difference, one way or the other.

BMDPD

November 29th, 2011
10:02 am

DP, your handle should be DA. I am positive Ogletree, Boykin, Rambo and Jenkins would all see significant time.

TS

November 29th, 2011
10:03 am

DP, We could ask the same about LSU’s Sheppard on being tested. He was actually one of the ones who was caught using synthetic MARAJUANA. Our boys were using stuff you can buy in gas stations.

Let LSU’s boys think that they are gonna run all over Georgia. LSU just might get a hob-nailed boot to the face. R.I.P. Larry!

Todd Grantham

November 29th, 2011
10:06 am

I AINT SCARED OF NOBODY!!!

mambo

November 29th, 2011
10:07 am

There is nothing dumber than a 19 year old with a big mouth.

St Simons - we're on Island time

November 29th, 2011
10:08 am

Good, I want him to keep thinking that. Even if we’re not, the boys
only chance at winning is to play fast with confidence
Good coaching

TS

November 29th, 2011
10:09 am

My bad, is was Ware that was suspended instead of Sheppard.

Idiot Dawg

November 29th, 2011
10:09 am

It’s true. I think our D can hang with their O for a while. They have so much depth on their D that I don’t think Murray & Co can wear them out. I fear too many UGA three & outs might get the best of our D. I think the dawgs hang tough the first half but the rubber meets the road in the second half. I have watched LSU play a couple of times and they are opportunistic. They ‘believe’ the breaks will come their way if they wait long enough. Here’s hoping we don’t make very many mistakes. Go dawgs!

Get Real

November 29th, 2011
10:10 am

HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA!

dawgforlife

November 29th, 2011
10:11 am

I disagree with the comments that only Jones could play for LSU. Olgetree is a first team all SEC talent. If not for the broken foot and missed games, he would be all SEC. Rambo will be named to the first team. Boykin will be drafted in the 2nd or 3rd round next April. And, Jones is the best 3/4 outside linebacker in the country. Add to that the scheme fit of the Dl and other LBs, and I believe UGA can play with LSU. My concern is not being out athleted. My concern is the big stage and all UGA’s young players. If they handle the pressure and the spotlight, we have as much overall talent. If they go deer in the headlights, it won’t be pretty. I guess what I am saying is: if the team that played Auburn shows up, we can play with anybody. On the other hand, if the team that played Kentucky shows up, we will lose handily. We’ll just have to wait and see. If we win, I can already hear the talking heads disrespect. LSU had nothing to play for blah blah blah….trust me it will come.

St Simons - we're on Island time

November 29th, 2011
10:11 am

LSU has the most awesome special teams in football.
Kicker, 2 punt teams, coverage, trick plays.
They’ve got us there. I hope it’s not the difference.

dawggirl

November 29th, 2011
10:12 am

Curious about UGA Insider’s prognostication, what is it that makes you think this will be the case?

I’d love to win, but I’m trying to keep expectations in check. Still proud of the accomplishments of this year. If we play like we are capable with all phases of the team bringing their A game, it should be a great contest to watch.

Eaassyy

November 29th, 2011
10:13 am

I love it. The kids aren’t scared at all. Everyone wants to talk about who beat who and when. Throw that crap out the window. The matchup is saturday. This isnt the september matchup againsst oregon or ugas september matchup against Boise.

The teams are matching up Saturday and UGA has a chance. If it were up to ESPN and the talking heads these two teams wouldnt even need to play becuase LSU beat Bama and Oregon already. But they don’t and I expect a heck of a ballgame.

VA DAWG

November 29th, 2011
10:15 am

JB,

You’re hilarious….a couple of months ago you were spouting off about getting rid of Richt and now you’re on the bandwagon. I guess the if the wind changes this weekend you’ll be back at it again. What a fair weather fan you are!

Ga D!

November 29th, 2011
10:15 am

Ga’s D is the best in the SEC!!! Lsu will have trouble moving the ball against this angry, nasty D! Ga upsets lsu—mark it down! Ga 27 lsu 24

Alphare

November 29th, 2011
10:16 am

UGA’s defense was ranked in the 70’s after the first 2 games.

Then they played a bunch of nobody and their defense number go up like crazy.

Personally I believe it’s somewhere between 1 and 70, around 30.

Yes, Grantham looks like a genius now. But like somebody said this morning, with BAMA’s offensive line, an average Joe can run pretty well.

BSU’s 5-year winning number is more impressive than UGA’s 1-season defense, if you ask me.

DP

November 29th, 2011
10:17 am

Boykin, Rambo and Ogeltree would get significant playing time for LSU? None of those guys would sniff the field on a team with Claiborne, Mathieu, Reid, Brandon Taylor, Ron Brooks and Tharold Simon. Brooks is a backup corner with 2 pick sixes this season.

When will Georgia’s players and fans learn to wait until they actually do something to run their mouths? A few weeks ago Dawg Nation was talking about how sorry this team was and wanting Richt fired, now they’re as good as LSU. There is not a more delusional team or fan base in the nation.

Cobb Dawg

November 29th, 2011
10:17 am

I like the confidence but this reminds me too much of Brandon Boykin’s tweet prior to the Boise State game.

Destin Dawg

November 29th, 2011
10:17 am

Dawgs have a more diversified offense.. we need to win special teams, field position, O line needs to man up and establish the run… then we can pass.. like JJ says.. I’m sure Grantham’s Junkyard Dawg defense can limit LSU Running games.. Go dawgs ! UGA 31 LSU 28 in OT..

JaxDawg05

November 29th, 2011
10:18 am

Chip, what size t-shirt do you wear?

BMDPD

November 29th, 2011
10:22 am

DP aka DA, I never said we were as good as LSU. Rambo leads the league in picks. Boykin leads the SEC in most 100 yard scores, ever. You really are a DA.

Fire CMR?......

November 29th, 2011
10:23 am

DP = techie

LSU can be beat…GO DAWGS GATA

DawgGone1

November 29th, 2011
10:24 am

Great confidence!!!, but for the sake of Arron Murray and the rest of the O, let’s not give them any locker room material. As if their defense would need it.

cmon man

November 29th, 2011
10:27 am

this team has been disrespected all year im glad they stepped up and said something. if you dont believe in yourself then who will? take care of business dogs.

SD Dawg

November 29th, 2011
10:29 am

Normally I am TOTALLY against boasting prior to a game. I like flying under the radar. But frankly, we ain’t got nothing to lose on this one. All great men envision themselves doing their best and being the best.

No one thinks the Dawgs are better than LSU except for our own players. I am glad they are confident. It’s not like we have a bunch of 2 and 3 star players out there. Many of those Dawgs are going to be playing on the next level.

Looking forward to seeing our guys rise to the challenge.

Big Dawg

November 29th, 2011
10:29 am

DP

With all due respect, but I believe most of Georgia’s defensive players were also heavily recruited by LSU. So give us a break, anyway I hope the officials allow for this to be decided by these two teams on the field Saturday night and none of the dirty calls either way take place.

These teams happen to match up well with each other and should be a good game.

Go Dawgs

kentuckybulldog

November 29th, 2011
10:29 am

Personally feelings aside, Georgia is a 13 point dog in a “home” game. LSU scored 14 first half points against Western Kentucky. Granted they wore them down and ended up with 42, but their bench is not nearly as stacked as Georgia’s. I don’t see LSU scoring more than 24-28 at the MOST. Georgia will score at least 14-21 points. Georiga to cover EASY…. Other than Alabama, nobody has a better shot to beat LSU than the Dawgs…..

Dap01

November 29th, 2011
10:32 am

If UGA loses, well they lose. But they have a lot of great football players and they have a chance. I would go to war with Ogletree, Jones, Boykin and Rambo.

Let’s go Dawgs!

jaglaw

November 29th, 2011
10:32 am

My only concern is whether UGA can last for 4 qtrs. physically. If we can, an not get nailed by a couple of trick plays, our defense will do fine. CTG has yet to be outcouched schematicly. LSU’s offense is not complex. It is very strong.

Biggest fear….BIG Plays. Mathieu #7, with LSU will take the ball from you. Orlson Charles has been holding the ball like a loaf of bread. I just think LSU #7 will turn a big catch and gain by Charles into a trunover. UGA can not turn the ball over and win.

NOT concerned with our defense matching up with LSU’s offense, but am concerned with our Offense against LSU’s opportunistic defense.

GO Dawgs