Writes Josh Kendall:
Georgia has enlisted the help of ESPN in finding a game. The network is making calls on behalf of the Bulldogs and trying to put together an attractive television matchup. . . .
[Georgia athletic director Damon] Evans has talked to both Notre Dame and Michigan about future matchups within the last two months, but both schools declined to enter into discussions.
Regarding the latter point, I am pleased to learn that Damon Evans is true to his word. I would encourage Maize and Blue fans to impress upon their athletic director the benefits of a Georgia-Michigan series and urge Fighting Irish fans to keep pushing for a Georgia-Notre Dame series, as well, as both intersectional matchups would be well worth watching.
In the meantime, though, September 1, 2007, is only 336 days away and the pickings already were getting slim when we confronted this issue last January.
At that time, 21 Division I-A teams were available on that date, including Clemson, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Texas, Texas A&M, U.C.L.A., and Wisconsin. Although many schools have not yet formally released their 2007 slates, several of those windows of opportunity undoubtedly have closed in the intervening nine months.
The preceding mention of the State University of New Jersey obligates me to include a photograph of Rutgers alumna Kristin Davis. (Photograph from Star Pulse.)
However, Kendall's Dawg Post article notes this additional datum:
"That makes me feel better," Evans said.
One of Paul Westerdawg's readers has suggested playing Auburn twice, but that may be overthinking the problem. If the Bulldogs are available and the Tigers are available, why not move the Deep South's oldest football rivalry to the start of the season and fill the gap later in the autumn?
Since Auburn is having the same problems as Georgia, let's let that be the marquee attention-getting season-opening showdown and let's fit in another non-conference opponent later in the campaign.
Beat the Christmas rush . . . hate Auburn early.
No rule requires Georgia and Auburn to play in November. In fact, the Bulldogs haven't played the Plainsmen in their traditional spot on the slate in many years. Between 1892 and 1914, the Tigers were the final opponent on the Red and Black's schedule 18 times in 23 seasons.
It was not until the mid-1950s that the 'Dawgs got into the habit of ending the autumn by running their "Hate Season" gauntlet of Florida, Auburn, and Georgia Tech on an annual basis and, beginning in 1996, the Classic City Canines have had another opponent---either Ole Miss or Kentucky---included among those three.
Since we have not observed any ironclad practice regarding the timing of the Auburn game, let's look at opening the season against the War Eagle next Labor Day weekend and finding out what teams might be available later in the year. If September 1 is bad for everyone we might want to play, let's be accommodating and try something new.