1. I have not yet watched the full-game. I’ve seen the highlights, I’ve read as much post-game analysis as I can since we returned home late last night. So, this 15 Thoughts is going to be a bit different.
2. There were approximately 2,710 blue chip recruits in the stand. Some are commits, some are committed elsewhere, and some are pondering their future school and home for the next 3 or 4 years. Macondawg pointed out in a previous thread that there were thirteen 5-Star rated recruits in the stands. It wasn’t so long ago that if one or two 5-Stars were in attendance on any given weekend, we’d all get pretty excited. Today, we expect the creme de la creme on any given Saturday. It’s a whole new ballgame in Athens.
3. The more this season progresses, the more I am appreciating what the coaching staff has collectively accomplished up to this point. We are still so flawed in so many areas, but there is nothing that is beyond repair. The question remains, can this be coached up in time (read: Before December 1)? I don’t know the answer to our goal line offense. Maybe this doesn’t get fixed this year. Maybe we’ve got a guy with the hops that Herschel had. Give him a try if we do. Who am I kidding. No one had Herschel’s hops. Not even Sam Adams.
Back on point: It is fun watching the light come on for some of these young guys. Some kids are still struggling, some are “getting it” sooner than others. There is still time for the collective string of lights to “pop” click all at once. I think we’re close.
4. Still, we should’ve laid at least 40 on Auburn. Doesn’t matter. We dominated them. I know it, you know it and, best of all, Auburn knows it. Careful...they might be developing a complex.
5. Auburn’s AD Allen Greene has declared that Arthur Gustavo Malzahn III will return for 2019. You know, the dreaded “vote of confidence.” Essentially, this means that Gus will be driving the bus for at least one more season, but I think the pressure to win will be immense. Couple that with the notion that he could be starting from scratch with a new QB (either an existing kid or a potential high-profile transfer) is quite the challenge depending on what Jarrett Stidham decides as he could test the NFL waters. Auburn has a history of following up mediocre seasons with a splash. Interesting times down on The Plains.
6. Kirby Smart doesn’t care for Auburn. He didn’t care for Malzahn’s “dog crap” comment last year and exacted sweet revenge twice now in less than a full year. Georgia dominated this rivalry for the better part of 20 years now, beginning with Mark Richt and the beat goes on. Rodrigo Blankenship’s ill-fated pass (still haven’t seen it) worked even though it failed. We didn’t need the points. We still covered the spread, and this was absolutely a “screw you” moment, of which I have absolutely no problem. Next year should be just a tad chippy, don’t ‘ya think?
7. D’Andre Swift claims he’s only about a “7 or 8 out of 10” since the beginning of the season and certainly since he had groin surgery back in January. Perhaps this explains why he didn’t see the field much in the Rose Bowl and in the National Championship season. Should we rest him against UMass? Hell yes, we should. If he’s 90% or better vs. Tech and, more importantly, against Bama I am liking our chances more and more. Elijah Holyfield is just terrorizing defenses, too. He’s a different kind of weapon with his ability to simply punish tacklers over and over.
I just love this...
...and not bad for someone who is not 100%
8. Jeremiah Holloman’s downfield blocking has rightly received the high praise it deserves. There is a specific technique when blocking a defensive back or safety and timing is crucial. Knowing when to engage (or simply run interference) and, more importantly, when to disengage is not an easy thing. Wide-receivers coach Cortez Hankton deserves a ton of credit here. All of Georgia’s one-and-two deep receivers are very skilled in this vital aspect of the game.
9. Obviously, Terry Godwin is getting healthy at the right time, too. We are almost at the end of the season, and skill guys are getting healthy.
Terry Godwin: Feeling better and shredding defenses
10. UMass could not come at a better time. We will be able to rest some offensive linemen in preparation for COFH week, and more important things beyond that. I’m not minimizing Tech* (well, yes I am...). They certainly can score points. I don’t see them hanging with us and their little 2-game winning streak in Athens will end. More on that down the road.
11, Georgia just announced home-and-home series with Clemson and Texas. Georgia will play @ Texas in 2028, Texas in Athens in 2029. Georgia will travel to Clemson in 2029 and Clemson will visit The Classic City in 2030. Dang, Vasquez. The 2029 schedule looks pretty daunting without knowing anything else. Of course, by then Dabo will be coaching Alabama and Nick Saban will be a color analyst at ESPN.
12A. Road trip to Austin, anyone? I’m going - by hook or by crook. I’d better start saving now. Austin is a fun-as-hell city with great food (BBQ mecca) and awesome music. Sounds familiar, huh? It’s like a bigger Athens with a State House. And bats. Lots of bats.
13. Alabama officiating conspiracy, or no? Just when I think Hubert Owens band of blind mice can’t be outdone, a whole new level of fail is established. Mississippi State wasn’t going to win that game, but they surely would have made it closer than it turned out to be. Anyone home, SEC? Hello? Is this thing on?
14. *Anyone worried about Tech? I’ll admit...I am just a little bit. Last year Roquan was a one-man wrecking crew. I’m more concerned about that gawd-awful noon start more than anything. I hope the crowd is loud.
15. Regarding Georgia’s QB situation and all those who think (including Paul Finebaum) that Kirby has done a poor job of managing his guys, read this. I think it is spot-on. It’ll be the Justin Fields show for much of Saturday.
OKAY, MY EXCUSE FOR BEING LATE:
- November weddings are really quite lovely. It was beautiful event, with a mountain backdrop, the deciduous trees in their peak color as the shorter days have triggered that annual chemical reaction that causes the leaves to slowly die, turn color cascading everyone with an unbelievable explosion of rich hues and tones, a babbling brook that glistened in the fading light of a shortened late-autumn day, and chilly temperatures that really made you appreciate the beauty of north Georgia at this time of year, coupled with the the bliss of two people that are truly in love and how special it is to share such a blessed event. All-in-all, it reminds one of how wonderful it is to be alive. It was truly and sincerely a wonderful day.
- Someone once said November weddings are best appreciated during the October bye-week ;-)