Yep, folks. Can you feel it? I know you can smell it, as it is about as palpable as it gets!
Bigtime football is finally back. And as the University of Georgia travels to South Bend to take on the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame -- who I hope have more fight in them than Conor McGregor against Floyd "Money" Mayweather -- in what has to be one of the most anticipated games in recent Dawg lore, it's setting up to be a potentially compelling season for the Red & Black. Georgia seemingly has everything it needs to be placed amongst the upper-echelon of college football.
While talent, alone, doesn't win titles, not having it can be a bit of a b___h!
We know, at its core, UGA wants to mash fools into potatoes with a multi-pronged rushing attack that's just as impactful between the tackles as it is bending the edges. We also saw that not having the proper personnel for said approach (mostly along the offensive line) is like boxing, um, well, Floyd Mayweather while using a Mixed Martial Arts approach (I can't let it go, y'all).
Somehow Georgia's staff in its first season in the Classic City turned a viable rushing attack, which was previously rooted in zone principles, into one of the softest outfits in the entire country. But if the first game against Appalachian State is any indication, that ship has been righted and the coast is clear for some good ol ' smash-mouth Georgia football.
Regardless of what some may say, the strength of Georgia's personnel is between an uber-deep running back corps and a talent-laden tight end group. After that, it has to be its freak defensive front seven where it can rotate personnel like late 1980's DJ's rotating vinyl at a house party.
So, at least it appears on the surface of it all, Georgia will have the ability to both stop the run and run the ball with the best of them. And no matter how you slice it teams like Alabama, especially in huge match-ups, excel the most with those two major aspects of football; there's no substitute for physicality.
However, Georgia was thrown a Tim Wakefield-like knuckleball when sophomore starting quarterback Jacob Eason suffered a knee injury in the opener, which would cripple the average team.
But UGA isn't the norm. It had waiting in the wings a signal-caller who looked exactly like former superstar Aaron Murray.
And when you take into account the poise, mechanics and F.B.I. (football intelligence), I'm not so sure Murray didn't sneak back in town looking to get some reps while he's currently without a job in the pros. (I mean, has anyone ever seen Murray and freshman QB Jake Fromm in the same room? Hmmm.)
Fromm's intangibles, mostly highlighted by his natural ability to lead through actions and words, may be just what the doctor ordered as the Dawgs take on the Irish. But, on the other hand, he's a true freshman going into an unfamiliar environment against a team that has the ability to put points on the board in a hurry.
ND's rushing attack -- which may be as talented as Georgia's -- offensive line, and receiving targets will thoroughly test Georgia's talented defensive unit, while ND's defense has lacked the, for lack of a better term, testicular fortitude it takes to compete with the elite.
All those factors make this tilt that much more intriguing, in my not-so-humble opinion.
So click the video below for some more analysis in the form of video.
Murf Baldwin is the founder of T.E.A.M. (Training, Exposure and Marketing). Follow him on Twitter at @MurfBaldwin.