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1. Jarvis Jones, LB, Georgia. UGA was down three defensive starters at Missouri due to suspension,...

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1. Jarvis Jones, LB, Georgia. UGA was down three defensive starters at Missouri due to suspension, but in the span of minutes in the fourth quarter, the Bulldogs' reigning All-American effectively throttled Mizzou's offense all by himself. First: Georgia leads 27-20 midway through the fourth when Jones steps in front of an ill-advised throw by Missouri quarterback James Franklin, returning the pick to the goal line; the offense punches it in on the next play to extend the lead to 34-20. Next: Three plays into the Tigers' ensuing possession, Jones tracks Franklin down for his second sack of the night, knocking the ball loose in the process; a teammate pounces on the fumble at the Mizzou 5-yard-line, and two plays later Georgia leads 41-20. That's how it ended, presumably because Jarvis decided there was no need to run up the score.

Matt Hinton gives top marks to Jarvis Jones. Go 'Dawgs!

When a strong contender that effectively earned 50 percent of the vote is rewarded with zero...

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When a strong contender that effectively earned 50 percent of the vote is rewarded with zero percent of the opportunity, the system has failed.

The above quotation, taken from Dr. Saturday's latest anti-BCS diatribe, succinctly sums up why I oppose a playoff as, quite literally, un-American. Re-read that quotation. Has the U.S. Constitution failed when the electoral college awards the White House to one presidential candidate in a closely-contested election rather than installing co-chief executives in the Oval Office? Under our system of government, a strong contender effectively earning 50 per cent of the vote but being rewarded with zero per cent of the opportunity is a phenomenon that occurs routinely, which serves as an affirmation of the system, not an indictment of it. Indeed, it is what allows the system to function. There are reasonable arguments in favor of a playoff, and Matt Hinton regularly offers many of them. This is not one of them, as 225 years of American constitutional history confirm. Go 'Dawgs!

Murray's arm was calibrated to perfection, firing to the proper coordinates on 14 of 18 passes with...

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Murray's arm was calibrated to perfection, firing to the proper coordinates on 14 of 18 passes with four touchdowns to four different receivers in a 45-7 rout over Auburn. The machine-like display easily extended Murray's lead as the most efficient passer in the SEC, and left him with a new school record for touchdown passes in a season (27). The 38-point win was also the most lopsided in the series by either side since 1946, and put UGA within a game of its first division title since 2005.

Dr. Saturday on Aaron Murray. Go 'Dawgs!

[I]f you're the sort of puritan who believes in that kind of monomaniacal infidelity to a sport,...

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[I]f you're the sort of puritan who believes in that kind of monomaniacal infidelity to a sport, then sure. But that assumes one kind of sports fan. A doting, faithful fan whose eggs of loyalty lie in one basket, a basket that in the case of Will [Leitch] bears the logo of the St. Louis Cardinals. Your loves are trademarked, and every second away from them is a moment of longing abandon looking back toward them. Good for you. I have my own faith, too: Florida football. Unfortunately, she's only around five months of the year at best, and a man like any man has serious needs. For seven months these eyes wander in search of spectacle, especially heart-stopping, violent, and often dangerous spectacle. Thus the appeal of the Olympics, and especially the World Cup—the stunning Brazilian in the short skirt that almost gets us fired every four years—which forces us to abandon home, family, and common sense in the name of soccer and incoherent international hullabaloo. The same applies to MMA, or the Triple Crown, or to March Madness, the NBA playoffs, or to any ridiculousness that catches the eye and can reasonably be called sport. Which is why I'll be the one watching men betting on the first raindrop down the windowpane on ESPN 17 in ten years in April. For me, fandom can be ducking your head in every four years, because while life is not long it is certainly very wide, and covering that span is worth the effort.

Like pretty much everyone else who is acquainted with him, I like Orson Swindle Spencer Hall. One of the things I like about him is the fact that he, like Matt Hinton and Brian Cook, articulates effectively positions with which I disagree, which I respect because it helps me to understand and appreciate that which I otherwise would dismiss out of hand as simply wrong. This is a classic example of that phenomenon, which is crystallized in Spencer's use of the phrase "while life is not long it is certainly very wide," which absolutely sums up the distinction for me. William Faulkner and Ernest Hemingway both were innovative authors and Nobel Prize-winning novelists who lived life on their own terms, but their writing styles could not have been more different because their lifestyles could not have been more different. Faulkner traveled the world and did what Southern writers tend to do, two guys whose birth certificates read "Thomas Wolfe" notwithstanding: he settled in, put down roots in or near a place to which he had longstanding family ties, and wrote about where he was. Hemingway, by contrast, went everywhere and wrote about everything he saw in the great big wide world, doing so with a level of effectiveness that allowed him (as P.J. O'Rourke put it) to romanticize Spaniards teasing farm animals. While I have never discussed literature with the man, I'd be willing to bet a fairly good-sized sum of money that Spencer Hall prefers Hemingway to Faulkner and no one who has ever been in my living room has any doubt that my preference is for Faulkner over Hemingway. Faulkner, you see, was all about depth, about knowing one place intimately. Hemingway, by contrast, was all about breadth, about experiencing as much as possible. Both approaches have their merits, and each has its pitfalls---the risk of depth is narrowness; the risk of breadth is shallowness---but we define by our choices the risks we are willing to run. If asked to complete the phrase "while life is not long it is certainly very _____," I would have filled in the blank with "deep," not "wide," and therein lies the difference. I don't intend to watch one minute of the Olympics, and the next soccer match I watch that does not include among the contestants a blood relative of mine of elementary-school age will be the first one, but I will spend Friday nights following women's gymnastics meets on the computer because those women represent the University of Georgia. Spencer cares about sports broadly, I care about Bulldog athletics deeply, and, while he is capable of depth and I am capable of breadth, each of us knows where he falls when push comes to shove. The fox knows many things. The hedgehog knows one big thing. Vive la difference.

The losses to Oklahoma State and LSU were unsettling, but understandable against two of the most...

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The losses to Oklahoma State and LSU were unsettling, but understandable against two of the most highly-touted outfits in the country; survival in the fourth quarter against South Carolina, Arkansas and Arizona State was proof that this team "knew how to win" or something. Tennessee, however, a lopsided loss to a mediocre, one-dimensional team on the brink of collapse itself after an 0-2 SEC start, was definitive proof that the Bulldogs don't really know how to do anything.

Matt Hinton says exactly what I said, but more diplomatically
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