I'm out of town and the internets are working for me almost as well as they do for Bobby Bowden and Joe Paterno. So, it is with humblest apologies that I bring you a one day late edition of Cocktail Thursday.
Coach Richt's squad will play an interesting contest against Coach Ed Orgeron's Ole Miss Rebels this weekend. On second thought, it's really only interesting to those of us with a direct rooting interest in the game. And even some of us may be having a hard time getting up for this one. After taking a brief straw poll of Bulldog fans in my immediate circle of friends, I've become aware that they are evenly divided between those who either think the 'Dawgs will win, cover and dominate and those who have an uncomfortable feeling which they can't quite put their collective finger on.
For the latter group, allow me to stoke your paranoia. We are coming off a huge, emotional road win. The Alabama game involved a lot of physical play. Quite frankly, but for the site of the preceding week's game, we are in the same position Alabama was when we beat them last week. Coach Orgeron's team played a superior Florida squad to the brink. You can't say they don't have the potential to beat an SEC heavyweight, despite the fact that they generally haven't (cool trivia question: When was the last time Ole Miss beat an SEC opponent not named Vanderbilt, Kentucky or Mississippi State? Answer: Before the Ed Orgeron regime began.).
Throw in the early start, no TV coverage and a looming road game against a Tennessee team that is fighting for its life, and you have a recipe for a look-ahead, low intensity car crash of a game. The kind that we could lose. The kind we very nearly did lose last year to Colorado. Worry away, my friends.
But there is cause for optimism. We're deeper than Ole Miss. We're generally better on offense and trending upward. We've got a defense that, while unspectacular, has been surprising and deceptively effective.
What do we need? Intensity. We need to come out and set the tone from the first snap. We need a young team to avoid the trap that by all rights any young team in its position would fall into. How do we do that? That's Mark Richt's problem. He gets paid to worry about such things and I'm sure he has an answer.
Your job is to bring your intensity to the game. It might help if you borrowed some from the opposing Coach, an ornery bear of a man, given to screaming in wild, cajun-tinged coachspeak. You can borrow some of The Orgeron's intensity by consuming an Orgeron Crush:
8 oz. of orange juice (important for those pesky midseason early games that CBS wouldn't touch with a stick and tweezers. Vitamin C is essential, you know.)
2 oz. vodka citron
2 oz. light rum
Would the Orgeron drink one? Of course not. His gameday rage is fueled not by drink, but by the memory of close losses to estimable SEC competition and fried possum. But 3 of these will keep you sugared up and loud in that adorable manner only attained by people who've been drinking since 7 a.m. So drink up. And until tomorrow . . .