Spurrier on Georgia: ‘I keep seeing all those long runs by those freshman Bulldogs’

Informed Sunday that ESPN’s College Gameday crew is coming to Columbia on Saturday for No. 5 Georgia’s game against No. 6 South Carolina, Gamecocks coach Steve Spurrier said that’s just the way he likes it.

The last time that group set up outside Williams-Brice Stadium was on Oct. 9th, 2010, and South Carolina knocked off No. 1-ranked Alabama 35-21.

“We certainly do [like games such as this],” Spurrier said on his weekly teleconference call Sunday. “The last time they were here, obviously that was one of the best days in Carolina football history. It was the first time we had ever beat a No. 1 team. It adds to the importance of the game. It sort of lets the world know and the country know South Carolina football’s pretty good. We’re not quite where we want to be yet, but we’re up there amongst them and hopefully we can keep pushing on.”

The matchup everybody anticipated for Week 6 of the season has materialized. Both the Gamecocks (5-0, 3-0 SEC) and Bulldogs (5-0, 3-0) were consensus preseason picks as the top two teams from the East and they arrive undefeated and ranked among the nation’s best. Both teams negotiated potential trap games this past weekend. South Carolina trailed Kentucky 17-7 in the first half but surged ahead in the second to win 38-17. Georgia wasted several three-score leads to outlast Tennessee 51-44 at Sanford Stadium.

Spurrier said he hasn’t had a chance yet to sit down and study the Bulldogs on video, but he has been impressed by what he has seen on highlight shows.

“I keep seeing a bunch of long runs by those Bulldog freshmen,” said Spurrier, speaking of tailbacks Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall. “That’s probably a good message when you think you lose a top running that has some issues like the kid they had there last year [Isaiah Crowell], maybe the next guys can come in and play as well or better. So the long runs is what I noticed mostly yesterday. And, of course [Aaron] Murray hit a bunch of big passes, too. They were a scoring machine.”

Georgia comes into the game leading the SEC in scoring (48.2 ppg) and total offense (536 ypg). But the Gamecocks, behind quarterback Connor Shaw and running back Marcus Lattimore, have been lighting it up, too. South Carolina averages 36.6 points and 409 yards per game.

The difference might be the Gamecocks’ defense, which is giving up an average of  just 11.2 points and 288 yards. That’s second and third in the SEC, respectively.

Conversely, Georgia’s defense has been a bit of a disappointment. The Bulldogs are in the bottom half of the league against the score (22.0 ppg) and in yards allowed (370 pg).

“Well, they’re scoring so fast,” Spurrier said. “You score fast and your defense has to play a lot more. It usually takes us a while to get it down the field and score. Our defense is hopefully only out there 58 to 63 plays, something like that. Georgia’s been scoring so fast and there’s been so many turnovers in their games, the defense is just playing more plays. No, they can make plays all over the place. And even last year we didn’t move the ball that well at all.”

Spurrier is referring to last season’s 45-42 win at Georgia in which the Bulldogs gave up 14 points on a pick-six and a fake punt and another 14 indirectly on offensive turnovers deep in their own territory.

You’d think that all would be warm and fuzzy with the Gamecocks, what with them being in some unchartered waters in program history from a winning standpoint. But Spurrier refused to take questions after the UAB game and a couple of other news conferences due to his differences over what he deemed was negative reporting by the local newspaper, The Columbia State. In particular he seems to be having issues with columnist Ron Morris, who has been known to take him to task from time-to-time.

“Well, it’s only one guy,” Spurrier said Sunday. “I just said I had enough of it. Hopefully we got the problem under control. I guess time will tell.”

Morris wrote a column about their strained relationship this past week.

Stay tuned for much more coverage of the Gamecocks and the Bulldogs this week as we get set for what will certainly be the most anticipated Georgia-South Carolina game in the long and storied history of that series.

COMPLETE COVERAGE OF GEORGIA-TENNESSEE GAME:

222 comments Add your comment

Class of '98

September 30th, 2012
3:23 pm

GO DAWGS!!! GURSHALL FOR HEISMAN!!!

Class of '98

September 30th, 2012
3:25 pm

By the way folks, posting that you are “first” is lame enough, why do people post “second” and “third”?

WHO CARES?!?!?!?!

Brian

September 30th, 2012
3:27 pm

No smart@ss comments this week from Spurrier? Must be concerned

Grantham's The Man!

September 30th, 2012
3:27 pm

I see Spurrier’s still being controled by his inner two year old alternate personality.

Richard Gray Holt, Jr

September 30th, 2012
3:28 pm

Brian

September 30th, 2012
3:30 pm

I could care less about being first or second or third but I do know that only one person can win the heisman and Gurshall is two. I am a hure UGA fan but Gurshall just does not sound right. Bush and Lendale White never had a cheesy name so why do we? I think its something Edward Aschoff from ESPN came up with. Marshall and Gurley sounds right to me

Brian

September 30th, 2012
3:31 pm

Grantham's The Man!

September 30th, 2012
3:33 pm

Looking forward to a great one in Columbia!

Maybe Sprrier can milk that Bogus Ron Morris excuse, and dodge the press for another week, and avoid the dreaded ”I just lost the biggest game in South Carolina history” speech.

NORRIS

September 30th, 2012
3:40 pm

Lou Holtz said that UGA couldnt beat south carolina…He said UGA couldnt score like that on their D. Well we will find out wont we… He also said that south carolina would face Alabama in the sec championship and give them all they want. We are talking about the same team that should have been losing 24 to 7 at the half to Kentucky!!

Badland Dawg

September 30th, 2012
3:42 pm

SC is going to give us a beat down…..the way we play on D in the mid….the old ball coach is going to take care of B…I got GA with big L this week….SC just looks better than UGA on D…..

beanster

September 30th, 2012
3:45 pm

““Well, they’re scoring so fast,” Spurrier said. “You score fast and your defense has to play a lot more. It usually takes us a while to get it down the field and score. Our defense is hopefully only out there 58 to 63 plays, something like that. Georgia’s been scoring so fast and there’s been so many turnovers in their games, the defense is just playing more plays.”

I wonder if our coaches understand this fact.

RNB

September 30th, 2012
3:46 pm

Georgia is in big trouble this weekend if they can’t shore up the run defense.

Badland Dawg

September 30th, 2012
3:51 pm

hay NORRIE……. GA had to come back just to tie Tenn befour half same thing…OUR QB did,nt know what team he was on just befour the half…but he is always like that in big games…..that why GA will not win the east….#11 gets crazy and O WELL there always next year…

dawggirl

September 30th, 2012
3:51 pm

I agree, beanster. Spurrier pointed out something that should be quite obvious to everyone. We need to take our time out on the field. It’s great we’re scoring so many points, but we do score too fast and our defense then has to play a lot more.

CHDawg

September 30th, 2012
3:54 pm

I have a novel idea: why don’t we let them play the game, rather than trying to divine the score ahead of time! The predictions are never right, so why bother? Spurrier is a great coach, and I think beating UGA is probably up near the top of his goal sheet every year. Maybe that is why he got back into SEC football–couldn’t stand life if he couldn’t beat the Dawgs. Let’s hope Richt and company have been putting some time in on attacking SC over the summer. Their DEs are going to be murder for our new tackles. I suspect Murray might have to do some scrambling…Go Dawgs! You never can tell, as nothing would surprise me at this point.

CHDawg

September 30th, 2012
3:57 pm

I disagree, folks. Our offensive production is better than ever! Our D’s strength is run D. If we can score 55 and keep them on the field the whole time, we should win big! Score often and quickly. We are deep on D, too. Strike fast and keep up the pace.

RedDawg

September 30th, 2012
3:58 pm

They will score on long drives like a python snake, and we will strike quick like a cobra.
I’ll take the cobra DAWGS WIN!!!!!!!!

beanster

September 30th, 2012
4:02 pm

@dawggirl — I admit that it does seems rather counterintuitive to suggest that our problem is that we score too often and too quickly, but it seems to me that the coaches pay little attention to this aspect of the game. If the D just had a long series and is huffing and puffing on the sidelines, we’re not doing ourselves any favors calling three runs up the gut. I’m not suggesting we tell Marshall or Gurley to step out of bounds instead of score, but perhaps we should play for 10 yards at a time more often, especially if the D is gassed (like they were in the 2nd half yesterday).

beanster

September 30th, 2012
4:07 pm

I am pretty sure that’s what we did yesterday, CHDawg, and we were very fortunate to get a W against a mid tier team in the East. I am afraid if we try that all season we may not be so fortunate at some point.

Really??

September 30th, 2012
4:10 pm

Damn guys!! Maybe Marshall should have taken a knee rather than breaking those two big runs. How inconsiderate of him! He clearly wasn’t thinking about the defense!! That’s the dumbest thing I’ve heard anyone say. Slow down with the scoring??? That’s crazy. Score quick and score often is what I say.

beanster

September 30th, 2012
4:16 pm

How about this then: Be conscious of how long the D has been on the field and make the appropriate play calls on offense. Richt’s early teams were superior ball control teams. Look at LSU last year, they were all ball control on offense combined with a stifling defense. We don’t need to go for a bomb every 2nd down just because it’s a passing down. Get a 1st down, keep the chains moving, our D off the field and theirs on it.

flo-ri-duh

September 30th, 2012
4:18 pm

UGA is better on offense and S.C. may be better on defense. Could come down to special teams like it did last year. UGA definitely was better than S.C. last year but special teams killed UGA. Tennessee is much better on the OL than S.C. UGA crushed Vandy and S.C. squeaked by in the 1st game of the year.

JacketFanMarcus

September 30th, 2012
4:19 pm

Man, these dogs are so overrated – #4 in the country? Please!

Barely beats a weak Tennessee team and beats by a weak Missouri team (celebrating like they really beat someone).

UGA has always under-performed its talent base. Don’t see anything different this season…

beanster

September 30th, 2012
4:22 pm

Marcus, I give you credit. You have balls. You have no brain. But you have balls.

RedandBlackDAWG

September 30th, 2012
4:38 pm

beanster

September 30th, 2012
4:02 pm
You are spot on about the defense spending too much time on the field. UGA needs to control the clock better. The defense spent 91 plays on the field yesterday and that is way too many plays on that side. We need to control the play a little bit more, and give the defense sometime to recover. It is ironic, but last year we couldn’t keep on the field because our offense wasn’t good enough and made too many mistakes and this year, we can’t keep on the field because we score too fast. I never thought qwe would have to worry about the speed of our offense, putting us at a disadvantage in a game.
S.C. presents a good challenge on defense for us though, so maybe we will have to slow down a bit, and equal out the play a little on both sides. It will take a big effort to shore up the D this week, and contain the run. We can’t always count on just out scoring the opponent all of the time.
I think mistakes will determine who wins this game. Whoever flinches the most will lose.

Pj

September 30th, 2012
4:42 pm

Anyone who advocates NOT scoring when the opportunity presents itself is a grade A moron. “You play to win the game!”

Cobb Dawg

September 30th, 2012
4:43 pm

The ole’ ball coach makes a good point. We score so fast our D has to spend a lot of time on the field. Maybe more ball control is on the table for USCe.

Bulldawg Rick

September 30th, 2012
4:46 pm

Gonna be a great SEC game & the first with UGA & SC ranked this high together!

How bout let’s quit with all the BS about our weaknesses (probably GT trolls).. If we have no more than 2 turnovers on O, we win!! Both teams have had issues during some of the games, however, bottom line BOTH teams are undefeated & respectively ranked #’s 5 & 6 nationally..

Game On!!

Do Dawgs!

Bulldawg Rick

September 30th, 2012
4:48 pm

Uhhhh I am not Homer Simpson…

Go Dawgs!

Bulldog on the Bayou

September 30th, 2012
4:51 pm

No beanster, Marcus doesn’t have balls; having no brain, however, makes him unaware of that. No brains and no balls – how sad! You do not talk trash about another’s team that is undefeated when yours is abysmal.

UGA89

September 30th, 2012
4:51 pm

Marcus…
After losing to MTSU you come on a UGA blog and put us down?? I’ll take being 5-0 and an overrated #5 team in the nation than be in your position.

William dawgs fan

September 30th, 2012
4:51 pm

Marcus, the jackets lost to middle Tennesee. Now go jump off a cliff.

douglas

September 30th, 2012
4:57 pm

I hate to say it but I believe USC will beat us. There defense will be better than our offense and they will get heat on Murray. They dominated Missouri — it was like men among boys. Spurrier is just setting us up — and knows USC can beat UGA.

JacketFanMarcus

September 30th, 2012
5:05 pm

To all you Dawg fans still basking off the glory year of 1980…

Fact #1: Georgia Tech won a national championship in 1990. UGA hasn’t won one since 1980!

Fact #2: Every highly rated running back recruited is ALWAYS the next “Herschel”! Now, to satisfy their fans, they’ve created this Frankenstein combo – one with the #3 and the other player with the #4 call “Girlshall”…OMG…

badmofo's

September 30th, 2012
5:05 pm

We didn’t even prepare for Kentucky they are garbage. We analyzed the first half and executed in the second without any prep. We practiced all week for the Georgia game and got another long week of prep this week. Spurrier isn’t a dummy. We will go into this next game well prepared, at home, and ready to beat hell out of .them and the bulldogs will falter and fall. Ga qb is going down
They can’t beat us we are a.better team And this is truly the most exciting game in a while

Hammer

September 30th, 2012
5:07 pm

Looks like the mutts opened as 2.5 dawgs in Vegas. They are daring you Georgia crackers to load up. Sucker bet, suckers.

tony

September 30th, 2012
5:10 pm

I think Spurrier makes a great point that we score too fast. However, lets not buy into his psychology because the last thing he would want to do is get into a shootout with a high power offense. Our d-line just has to do a better job at stopping people.

Will Freind has done a good with the offensive line – now go hire a better d-line and linebacker coach who is serious about teaching our young men proper technics, fundamentals and will demand respect.

Really?

September 30th, 2012
5:10 pm

Love how a GaTech fan has to comment on Georgia – Tech SUCKS just deal with it.

Kingsx7

September 30th, 2012
5:12 pm

JUST WIN BABY !!!!!!!!!!!

Really?

September 30th, 2012
5:13 pm

To all the SC fans -Georgia will leave it all on the field. Careful what you say now cause you truthfully don’t know how SC is going to play.

bobdawg

September 30th, 2012
5:13 pm

Jacketfans….
the southern conference is where u and GT belong
1aa FCS

Bobby

September 30th, 2012
5:18 pm

Yeah, I’m a Tech and I fully agree WE SUCK right now. I’m not certain the Southern Conference would actually accept us at the moment.

Lagdawg

September 30th, 2012
5:26 pm

The D Line needs to be challanged. They are too big to keep getting blown off the line. The ILB can’t get off of blocks and the NG is getting manhandled. The DC needs to give them a gut check for the season. Branden Smith needs to be on the bench. He couldn’t cover a bucket with a lid on it. The defense looks horrible and the dumb excuse about the offense scoring too fast is pathetic. The D has depth, they just need to play better. Very poor execution. There was no pressure on Tenn. QB until towards the end of the game. If the D is supposed to have so many players ready for the NFL, they better start playing like it. It’s do or die next week.

joe jenkins

September 30th, 2012
5:30 pm

Some of ya’ll are full crap….the offense needs to keep scoring at a fast or however they can….if the defense wants off the field…then they need to get more three and outs…my gawd people we finally have a good offense and yall want to complain because they score to fast….geez!!! Anyways whats up with us helping tenn players up off the ground after being tackled??? and aaron murry texting bray…it seems like we have lost some hatred for tenn…which is not good for a rivalry…. It would be a dream come true for us to pound sc into the ground…but i don’t see it happening because we cant stop the run….We have all the talent in the world on defense…but we simply dont make plays

Mandrell Dawg

September 30th, 2012
5:30 pm

I don’t want to hear anything about the offense scoring too fast. You take the points where you can get them. If they come on 1 play drives, be happy and hope the next series is just as quick. If you want the defense to have fewer plays on the field, make the other team go 3 and out!! I think that might cut down the number of plays on defense just a little bit!!

Rick James

September 30th, 2012
5:30 pm

I’ll bet Spurrier is not whining about having to play Arkansas this year..

fayncdawg

September 30th, 2012
5:37 pm

Brian

Spurrier SHOULD be very concerned esp. if the Dawgs are smart enough to run on this team! That being said, I’m sure we’ll get a smart alecky comment from Spurrrier before Thursday! Better yet try Tuesday when the polls will be out!

Dawg1

September 30th, 2012
5:41 pm

Get ready for it…

The Old Ball Coach does a pretty good Imitation of Vince Dooley the week before a game…

It’s the other 51 weeks where he is a total jackass…

:)

Have to admit; I’ll miss him when he hangs them up..

beanster

September 30th, 2012
5:43 pm

For all of you clear geniuses out there saying we should score as fast as we can: In your estimation, why has our defense, the #5 defense in all of the country last year who got every single starter back AND has a few 1st or 2nd year players now contributing, suddenly forgotten how to stop teams? According to you geniuses, it’s all execution. You know who makes excuses about players not executing? Willie Martinez. You know who else? Paul Johnson.

We have the talent. We need to be coached properly and get the scheme right. Something ain’t workin’…

Dawgdad (The Original)

September 30th, 2012
5:46 pm

The best way for the defense to get off the field is a three and out! Every possession it appears we are in a “prevent”. Man up and stop giving up these 8-9 yards on first down.