The Mark Richt Victory Watch: Pyrrhic Victory No. 125.

Obviously this is the space in which I traditionally update the Mark Richt Victory Watch, the step-by-step countdown to Mark Richt's eventual ascendence to the title of winningest football coach in University of Georgia history.

I'll do just that anon. But for the moment I feel compelled to take note of the major story from last night's victory. As has been widely reported this morning, senior Bulldog quarterback Aaron Murray has gone down with a torn ACL and will miss the remainder of this, his final season in the red and black.

It is heart-breaking news. There's no positive to be gleaned from it other than the fact that Hutson Mason will now get a chance to lead the 2013 Classic City Canines onto the field against both their biggest instate ACC rival and a bowl opponent before taking the field as expected to lead the 2014 iteration against a full slate of opponents. Murray, in this man's opinion, will eventually bounce back from this, albeit not before the end of his Bulldog career, and not before April's NFL Draft. But eventually Murray will move past this, and be successful as a quarterback, a citizen and, heck, maybe even a coach in his own right one day.

I'm confident of all these things thanks to the efforts of Murray's parents, his high school coaches, and young Aaron himself. All have put in the effort to make him the most statistically dominant quarterback in SEC history.

But among the folks who helped Aaron Murray become the player and person Bulldog Nation is so proud of is one Mark Aloysius Richt.** One of the benefits of Mark Richt's tenure in Athens, besides a series of SEC championship game appearances, the continuation of the longest streak of bowl appearances of any team in the conference, and 125 wins, is the fact that Richt has developed a whole lot of football players of whom Georgia fans can be proud. That's not an insignificant thing. As I get older, it's something that I appreciate a little more each year. It's a victory in and of itself.

Speaking of victories, in one that will go down in Red and Black lore as either the last of the Aaron Murray era or the first of the Hutson Mason era, the University of Georgia prevailed 59-17 over the visitors from the University of Kentucky. This means that it's time for me to assume the yoke previously worn by Dawg Sports founder, noted West Wing enthusiast, and reputed probationary Diogenes Club member T. Kyle King, updating the Mark Richt Victory Watch.

On Saturday, Mark Richt secured his 125th career win, moving him to within 76 victories of tying Vince Dooley for the all-time win record at Georgia. Coach Richt currently boasts a 125-44 record and a .740 winning percentage after 169 games. At the identical juncture in their careers, Coach Wally Butts was 108-54-7 (.639) following a hard-fought 16-14 victory over vanderbilt in 1954, and Vince Dooley was 112-51-6 (.663) following a loss to Stanford in the Bluebonnet Bowl to close out the 1978 campaign.

In short, Mark Richt remains statistically out in front of his historical coevals at the same point in their respective careers.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, and start getting ready for the annual renewal of Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate. Until later . . .

Go 'Dawgs!!!

*Despite his individual accolades Murray doesn't have an SEC Championship or a National Championship and that just gripes the hell out of a certain segment of the Bulldog fan base. Most of them don't remember well what it was like to be a Bulldog fan from 1986 through 2000.

** Not Mark Richt's actual middle name. But be quiet. I'm rollin'.

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