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Tuesday ‘Dawg Bites Plumbs the Depth and Soars the Skies

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 20 Charleston Sou. at Georgia

It’s a beautiful morning in the Peach State and you’re a fan of the defending college football national champions. In short, it’s already a great day. Let’s make it better by catching up on what’s happening in Bulldog Nation.

Kirby Smart wants to see more toughness from his inside linebackers, which seems like a fairly important item for the wish list. Georgia lost a lot of talent at the position. But it was also veteran talent. You just don’t replace the number of big game snaps that Nakobe Dean, Channing Tindall, and Quay Walker logged over the past couple of seasons. And while guys like Jamon Dumas-Johnson and Trezman Marshall are certainly talented, I’m a little worried that there aren’t going to be any players in the lineup who can consistently wreck plays all by themselves the way Dean did in 2021. That’s a combination of physical ability, mental sharpness, experience, and instinct that’s just hard to replicate on a yearly basis.

The urgency at inside linebacker is among five observations the Banner Herald’s Marc Weiszer has from Saturday’s scrimmage. Marc notes the logjam of depth on the offensive front, and while I agree there’s a lot of talent there dunking it out for playing time the unit remains one of my quiet concerns for 2022. It remains to be seen how physical the offensive front can be after losing do-everything multi year starters Jamaree Salyer and Justin Shaffer. And while I have seen new/old offensive line coach Stacy Searels put together some great offensive lines in his time across the SEC and ACC, and I know he knows what he’s doing, there’s still a transition to be made there. I think the unit will be big and physical. I need to see whether it will be consistent.

AP Poll voters, on the other hand, appear pretty convinced that Kirby Smart will be able to replace his losses and put the pieces together for another elite season. That’s why they collectively voted the Bulldogs #3 in the initial poll behind Alabama and Ohio State. I can’t really quibble with the top three. The clear delineation of this group from everyone else is also evident from the fact that every one of the 63 first place votes cast was for either the Tide, the buckeyes, or the ‘Dawgs.

Clemson at #4 seems sort of like muscle memory more than deep analysis given their turnover in coordinators. Texas A&M at #6 with a transfer quarterback who wasn’t that successful at his prior stop and a seriously young roster seems like good evidence that if you talk fast and loud enough people are bound to notice you. Will they notice when the Aggies finish the year 9-3? Yeah, they’ll probably notice that too.

Finally, the return of college football season also means the return of the uproariously funny folks over at SEC Shorts. They’re ready to fly into the 2022 season, and I’m right there with them.

Until later . . .

Go ‘Dawgs!!!