Its Monday. My bootlaces are back in my boots, the razor is back by the sink, and the water hose has been removed from my vehicle's exhaust pipe. So while my sanity and rational decision making may have been restored, I do still have a lot of thoughts swirling around concerning the Bulldogs. We've already seen "you're on notice," We've gotten our 15 thoughts on a Sunday, and as always, they were very good and I loved reading them. Below are 5 ideas that have been percolating since I turned the game off on Saturday.
I'm a little late getting this in and this will be the umpteenth rehash/take/opinion, but hey its a free country, courtesy of folks like Chuckdawg and Dawg2011 who serve(d) in country's fighting forces.
This is just me reasoning out some thoughts and questions, so please, treat it as such. Also, please leave me some constructive feedback: If I'm spouting whargarbl, tell me so when I post in the future I can avoid that. If I'm way off base, let me know that as well. if I'm simply too late, let me know and I'll drop my thoughts earlier next time.
1. After calming down from being very upset. I'm not all that surprised. We've come out flat to start the game every game except the Tennessee game. We came out flat against a very strong opponent and it cost us in a big way. Other than the 21 point first quarter I feel like we played a pretty solid defensive game. That we couldn't get any offensive traction at all is upsetting, but SCAR has an incredibly impressive defensive front and they made life miserable all night.
2.Offense/bad breaks . What happened to our running backs? I seem to recall we had 3 very good running backs prior to Saturday. Perhaps they had too many cupcakes early in the season. Maybe SCAR is just that good but I don't think so. Not take away from SCAR, but I believe we could have run successfully. I did see glimmers where they made some solid runs over the course of the night.
Perhaps it was mental toughness? The boys just couldn't overcome the shell shock of being so ill used in the first quarter? Or maybe they were just young and inexperienced and it showed in a big game. I don't know.
It seems like all the breaks go against us when we play SCAR these days. A should have been pick that wasn't, a crazy deflection resulting in a turnover, a muffed punt return that turns into a TD Last year's huge fake punt, and the list goes on. So much of what put us in that hole was due to crazy, odd breaks on plays that really could have gone either way. Lady Luck seems to have a thing for the Ole Ball Coach.
3. If not now when? I've considered myself a CMR Apologist for a long time. I'm not going to call for his head, but I am, shall we say, concerned at this point. I think he's probably one of the best active coaches in the game today, and could very well be one of the greatest active coaches (there is a subtle distinction) if he'd just flip the switch and let Evil Richt run wild. My eye test (again purely subjective and vulnerable to reports, articles and what I've seen on the field) tells me that this is probably the most talented, most complete team We have fielded (on both side of the ball) in the last ten years, and certainly in the last 5 or 6. I think we're an all around more talented team than 2007 or 2008 (I may be way off, but Our offense is overall more talented for certain, and it feels like our defense has more talent to it as well, poor performance notwithstanding).
AM is not Matt Stafford, but he is one of the best quarterbacks Georgia has seen. Todd Gurley and Keither Marshall are outstanding, and will only get better. Boo Malcome is a solid, if unsensational running back behind them. Even with the loss of Bennett we have more depth at WR than I've ever seen. Defensively We have probably the most talented squad I can recall at Georgia, with Jarvis Jones, John Jenkins, Ogletree, Rambo, Vasser, Abry jones. There is just too much talent not to wonder where the disconnect is when it comes time to play top level competition.
I have one major gripe with him other than "GEORGIA NEVER WINS THE BIG GAMES PAAAAWWWWWWLLL" (based on our record against ranked opponents there's some merit to the claim, but not the way its typically framed). He seems too reluctant to change things that clearly aren't being successful. Why did it take so much to get rid of Willie Martinez and get the S&C program up to speed? What will it take to get rid of Bobo?
I agree with what has been said elsewhere concerning Bobo: He wouldn't be calling the plays if Richt didn't have complete confidence in him. However, I have zero confidence in him and I'm tired of watching his offenses fade in the big games. I believe Richt should go back to running the offense, and Bobo should be shown the door. Until he puts together a complete offensive game against a top ten caliber team (which Bobo as an OC has never managed to my knowledge) I will continue to believe this.
4. I think Grantham will get the defense sorted out and righted in time for Florida. I don't think we'll see a flat start (defensively) the rest of the season. I still believe he's an excellent D Coordinator and I think Georgia will bounce back defensively and surprise some folks going forward. I am less confident about our offense. See above concerning #FireBobo.
5. This team may go 11-1 and miss the SEC CG. And it will be our own fault. Florida is beatable. Assuming Georgia goes out and plays ITS game the rest of the season, I don't see another guaranteed, or even high probability loss in the SEC or elsewhere.
SCAR is not a better team than we are. They certainly played better, but you will not make me believe that with all the talent on our team that we were outclassed. On the other side of that coin, SCAR may drop two games (the next two would be ideal actually) and we could slip back ahead with a win over UF at the end of this month.
Georgia has the team this year to play with anyone in the nation. So my final bonus thought, is a question: What's it gonna take to unleash that potential? Please, someone, anyone. Tell me.