Your Guide to the Emotional Roller Coaster That Will Be the 2009 Season

I know it.  You know it.  Bob Dole knows it, and the American People know it.  2009 is not likely to be a banner year for the Georgia Bulldogs.  There's just enough promise, though... just enough chemistry, determination, and talent that the possibility exists for a special year to, indeed, come about.


So you're saying there's a chance...

Since I believe the year will be an untenable emotional roller coaster for those who have not prepared themselves in advance, I have assembled this primer to help all Georgia fans steel themselves for what will surely be both an exhilarating and disappointing season, all in one.  (For the record, my prediction is 8-4.)

  • Game 1 - @ Oklahoma St. - W: Contrary to what seems to be popular opinion, Georgia will win this game.  I could wax poetic on why, but what's more important is how this will psychologically affect you.  After winning this game, Georgia will immediately be vaulted into the top 10, and all the pundits and Lee Corsos of the world will start proclaiming that Georgia will now be a legitimate contender for the national title.  This will serve to, overnight, rocket the average Bulldog fan's expectations from having a mediocre-to-moderately-successful season to possibly winning a championship.  As any good roller coaster does, this will lead to the next week, when...
  • Game 2 - South Carolina - L: ... Georgia gets beaten at home by a good-but-not-great Carolina team who comes in with 9 days rest. After this game, you will be tempted to feel distraught and angry at any combination of the following people:  Mark Richt, Willie Martinez, Steve Spurrier, Joe Cox, Lee Corso, Lou Holtz, and probably God, as well.  Georgia will drop back to about 18th or 19th, and the pundits will declare that Georgia's previous game against the Cowboys was a fluke and will start pondering why Steve Spurrier should not be crowned the best dadgum coach ever in the history of man... ever.
  • Game 3 - @ Arkansas - L: This game is the 2nd game in a stretch of 3 where the timing is just horrible for Georgia.  Arkansas will be coming off of a bye week, after playing an FCS team the week before that... so they will basically have been preparing for us since... now.  I know Mark Richt's road record is spectacular, but this game will but it to the ultimate test against a very improved Razorback squad that is rested and ready to go.  After Georgia loses this game, some of the more idiotic irrational elements of our fanbase will be claiming we'll have a losing season, and that we will probably not even win a single SEC game.  They will also be wailing for both Mike Bobo's and Willie Martinez's head.  But not you, dear reader... you will have been prepared by this primer, and will know that brighter days are down the road.
  • Game 4 - Arizona State - L: The Balmy Beelzebubs will roll into Athens, having just faced an FCS team, a bye, and UL-Monroe in their first 3 games, against a Bulldog team that has just been pounded physically by 3 very good teams and has just returned from their second long road trip in 3 weeks.  ASU will be underrated, and virtually every Georgia fan (that hasn't read this primer) will think of them as a glorified MAC opponent.  They will prove otherwise, and after a 1-3 start, every Georgia fan that hasn't sealed their doors with Billy Mays-brand Mighty Putty will be seriously considering running for the exits of the old bandwagon-train.  Fortunately, however, longsuffering Dawg fans will only have to wait one more week... so just grab an extra beer or beverage of choice and just ignore it when Mark May trumpets the fact that he "always knew Georgia was all bark and no bite this year."
  • Game 5 - LSU - W:  LSU is a good team this year, but they will come into Athens with Florida looming the next week at Death Valley, and at 1-3, should definitely underrate our team.  Georgia will have circled the wagons during the week with a "players-only meeting" or some such thing, and will come out with a strong performance that will surprise everyone watching... except for you, dear reader.  Psychologically, however, this will serve to do little more than partially sate the biting, nagging dread that has been pervading every Georgia fans' mind since the South Carolina loss.  This will be the first "click" on the motorized machine that carries that roller coaster cart up to the top of that long, moderately-sloped, really big hill.  (Which, for the purposes of this analogy, is not at the beginning of the ride, but near the end.)  click, click, click...
  • Game 6 - @ Tennessee - W: The second win which lifts the Dawg fans' spirits.  Some hope begins to creep into the average fan's head after this game, since Georgia finally claws back to a .500 record at 3-3. Even so, Georgia will be named one of the "biggest disappointments of 2009" by Mark May.  Click click click...
  • Game 7 - @ Vanderbilt - W: I think this game will be closer than the Tennessee game will be, but either way, Georgia pulls out another close win.  Most Georgia fans will yawn at this one, because it's Vanderbilt, and will already be bracing themselves for the unavoidable smackdown that will be coming in 2 weeks at the hands of the indomitable Gator-chomping machine that is Tim Tebow & Co.  Click click click...
  • Game 8 - Florida - W:  Call it wishful thinking, but we've already discussed at length Georgia's record versus the defending national champion since 1965, not to mention the fact that we will have a bye week, while Florida will have to travel to not-as-easy-as-it-looks Mississippi State.  Georgia will be coming in unranked at 4-3, and Florida will probably be coming in ranked #1 and 7-0.  In a harkening back to the glory days of the '80's, an underrated and overlooked Georgia team will surprise the #1 Gators, and will come away with a very prized scalp.  (I hate Florida.) The average Georgia fan will now start to believe that all of the rest of the games on the schedule are winnable, right before he goes to throw up from partying too much.  CLICK CLICK CLICK...
  • Game 9 - Tennessee Tech - W: Most fans will still not be sober from the party after the Florida game, but the team will still win. Click click click...
  • Game 10 - Auburn - W: Georgia will now have hit its stride and will take care of a struggling Auburn team in their first season under a new coach.  (Kyle hates Auburn.)  The average Georgia fan will now think that Georgia is, without a doubt, one of the best teams in the country hands-down, and will wonder what the stupid pollsters are doing ranking them so low at only #15 or #18.  But, just as before in the season, one must be patient, for the other shoe is about to drop.  Click click click...
  • Game 11 - Kentucky - W: On Senior Day, Joe Cox, Jeff Owens, and their fellow seniors will be roundly saluted and cheered, as the first part of the season will have been completely forgotten after the wins over Florida and Auburn.  Georgia will take care of Kentucky, and the only debate among most Georgia fans will be whether Georgia is getting screwed by not being eligible for a BCS bowl with 3 losses (and, therefore, not being in the top 12).  Click click click...
  • Game 12 - Georgia Tech - L: And then... after reaching the apex of the hill, the roller coaster comes rushing down in a heart-fluttering, horrifying drop to one of the lowest points of the ride/season.  Riding a supreme wave of confidence (and a ranking that's possibly around 11 or 12), Georgia loses again to a Tech squad that is coming off a bye week, preceded by a trip to Duke the week before that.  The average Georgia fan makes plans to surruptitiously place C4 under the house of his Tech neighbor and not-so-subtly warn the neighbor that said explosive device is rigged to go off at the first sign of more nerdy gloating.

After the season, an objective measure will discover that the team's results have been much like the preseason predictions in terms of record... 8-4, with a likely trip to the Peach-Fil-A Bowl.  The roller coaster ride that will get us from point A to point B, however, will certainly be very dramatic and life-shortening.

But now, at least, you, dear reader, know what to expect.  So, please keep this in mind when both when the Dawgs emerge victorious from the Oklahoma prarie and when the Red and Black whimper home after starting 1-3 and getting beaten by a Pac-10 team in their own backyard.


Go Dawgs!

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