While we generally fill this space with the nonsensical ramblings of Free Form Friday, this is the one offseason Friday on which we flip the switch over to game mode. It's the Friday before G-Day in the Classic City. See, G-Day isn't quite a game day, but isn't not a game day. And since this is the blog which prides itself on helping you prepare for game day, we're gonna make like Mr. French and make a flippin' ruling. This is a game weekend, and there's more pregame goodness below the fold. Enjoy.
Maestro, the music:
The Red and Black's Daniel Kramer has a piece today on "The 229 Boys", an unofficial name for the group of Bulldog football players from south Georgia. We've discussed on this site in several different forms how absolutely critical it is for the Dawgs to lock up south Georgia in recruiting. Here's a new angle: imagine 2011 without Valdosta's Mike Gilliard and Malcolm Mitchell, Seminole County's Bacarri Rambo, and Early County's Shawn Williams. While the metro Atlanta area is the population center of the state and more and more the source of the overwhelming majority of university students, knowing that there is a nucleus of players in Athens looking to welcome guys from Ocilla, Ludowici, and Dawson to the Classic City.
Hey speaking of the young men going to school in Athens, apparently they're the best looking in the country. Alabama and Florida came in at numbers 4 and 5, respectively on the list. The gentlemen from Tuscaloosa were hurt by the magazine's insistence on assigning bonus points for complete sets of teeth. The bull Gators have lodged a formal protest claiming that the "Dress and Grooming" portion of the formula unfairly discriminates against those who refuse to wear shirts with sleeves. Georgia Tech lost its spot at #10 when it was discovered that the rugged fellows interviewed on North Avenue as part of the story were actually the executive board of the Georgia Tech Panhellenic Committee.
And speaking of rugged fellows, now that Bobby Petrino is out at Arkansas, somebody's going to have to replace him. Why not Mike Bobo? Chip Towers quotes analyst and former coach Mike Gottfried as saying that Georgia's offensive coordinator will be a head coach sometime soon. And while this may not be a popular opinion among Bulldog fans, I think he's right.
Mike Bobo is the offensive coordinator Billy Beane would hire. Really, if you look at the objective data (points, yards, quarterback development success) El Bobo is consistently successful at generating offense. What drives Bulldog fans nuts are the aesthetics of how he gets there. The goal line fade. Carlton Thomas and Brandon Harton diving up the middle. Much like Kevin Youkilis (referred to in Moneyball as "the Greek God of Walks") Mike Bobo produces in ways that are hard for us to understand and appreciate. Sure the guy's playcalling looks like the work of a raccoon with mercury poisoning from time to time. But in 2011 the Georgia Bulldogs averaged 34.5 points per game. They were held below 21 points on only 3 occasions in 13 contests, and won 2 of them (the lone loss being to LSU).
If the sometimes uneven nature of the Georgia offense drives you to drink you're not alone. If you're responsibly imbibing this weekend, may I suggest a Rum Swizzle? It's made by combining 2 oz. of rum, the juice of a lime and 2 oz. of orgeat syrup over ice. Shake it violently like Jarvis Jones on a quarterback, then strain into a glass. You can also add a pinch of grated fresh ginger if you want (which, believe me, you do).
Sadly I won't be able to make it to Athens tomorrow with the rest of the Dawg Sports crew. If you find yourself in the Classic City be safe, have a great time, and don't flash shiny objects at the offensive coordinator. It disorientsand upsets him, and he's dangerous and wily when cornered and frightened. You've been warned. In the meantime we'd love to hear what you're looking for during tomorrow's glorified scrimmage. Is there a particular player you'd like to see step up? Until later . . .