We've gotten a little behind in our summer-long countdown of reasons it is absolutely great to be a Georgia Bulldog. So let's make up for lost time with a good one. It's great to be a Georgia Bulldog because of this game:
That's right. The whole darn thing. Every blessed minute. If you want to see Will Muschamp and Nick Saban generate tandem smoldering rage, this is the replay for you. A few notes.
- The Georgia offense actually came into this one looking very anemic and leaning heavily on Brian Van Gorder's defense. David Greene then there 5 touchdown passes, many of them off play action. It was about as perfect a representation of Mark Richt's offensive philosophy as you'll see, exploiting man coverage on the outsides and leaving safeties burdened and confused, caught between the power run game and big, fast receivers capable of making plays downfield.
- Danny Ware was about as tough a freshman tailback to tackle as you'll see. And yes, Thomas Brown really was that small when he came to Athens. To say he got his money's worth out of the strength and conditioning program would be an understatement.
- Fred Gibson's touchdown reception over Corey Webster followed by Xavier Carter's bone-headed kickoff return all the way to the half yard line were about as jarring a pair of plays as you'll ever see back-to-back. A Nick Saban-coached college team may never have looked this poorly prepared from a mental standpoint.
- Speaking of Webster, he had an exemplary NFL career (as a teammate of Ware's) but this was not his day. David Pollack, Thomas Davis, Odell Thurman, and the rest of that 2004 Georgia defense were terrifying. I would hate to be the quarterback facing them on 3rd and long over and over again as Jamarcus Russell did in this game.
So if you've got a couple of hours to kill, there are far worse ways to do it than watching this replay. I guarantee you Nick Saban watched it over, and over, and over. And it still chaps his ass. I find a lot of comfort in that. Until later . . .