GATA

Well, at least someone on the team is pissed off…

From Seth Emerson’s Georgia Beat Blog:

“We’re pissed off,” Charles said Wednesday. “That’s our thing right now. We’re pissed off right now. We’re 1-4. We’ve got a lot of fans saying this, a lot of fans saying that. And I mean, we just want to make everybody happy. We want to be happy.

“We’re tired of walking around the locker room, quiet, coaches yelling at us all the time for no reason, because we’re losing. So we’re just going out there and to get our respect back. We’re pissed off right now.”

And just to be clear:

“I’m speaking for everyone at Georgia,” Charles said.

There hasn’t been a singular fiery speech by one player, the tight end added, because everyone feels the same way.

“We can’t change the past,” Charles said. “We’ve gotta move forward. The main thing is we’ve gotta stick together.”

Charles said he has also detected a difference in head coach Mark Richt, who on Wednesday night had to answer a question of whether he was fighting for his job. Publicly, Richt has remained rather even-keel, but in practice it’s apparently been a different story.

“I noticed he was kind of hyped when it came down on Monday, and everybody started hitting,” Charles said. “He was a little jumpy. We started getting hyped. And coach was in it. That was what we really needed.”

Richt called a full-pads practice on Monday, the first time he had done so two days after a game in his 10 years at Georgia. Charles said the players approved.

“I felt like we needed it,” Charles said. “Like coach Richt said, camp was a little lighter than usual. To tell the truth, it put a lot of energy around the locker room. Everybody was ready to go. Everybody when in the training room and got taped. So you knew everyone was really excited.”

So people felt like it was about time, and that it was needed?

“Oh yeah,” Charles said. “Oh yeah.”

I don’t know if this is a clear sign that the players are feeling pressure, too.  But I hope so.  Like the old saying: ‘If life hands you a crap filled sandwich…”  Hopefully they are all fed up with this nonsense and will come out cranked up and hopefully find some leadership…

On a personal note, I really think this is gutsy as hell for Orson to say.  And he should be pissed, as few times as he has been targeted this year.  This is the kinda stuff that will help the team.  Sorry Richt, praying won’t help right the ship, God could give 3 lesser craps about if we win/lose/draw.  Maybe a few cuss words in the locker room would help, too.

-Inspector G

Alright you bastards, now you know how I feel…Part 1 of 2

  “It’s easy to have faith in yourself and have discipline when you’re a winner, when you’re number one. What you got to have is faith and discipline when you’re not a winner.” – Vince Lombardi

What better way to begin a post about the direction of our program?  Richt hasn’t been here before and in my adult years (which is pretty much Richt’s tenure), neither have I. 

 I have a couple of points to present here, but before I get on with that, I want to make a statement about our fan base pitchfork wielding, retarded  asinine portion or our fan base.  To all of those calling for “heads to roll” and “fire everyone, including Aaron Murray!” you can go to hell.  I don’t have the power to send you there, but I have encountered your kind many times in my travels.  You all have a certain smell about you, wear backwards hats, have earrings, post rambling senseless diatribes on the AJC (ya’ll are the only ones who read that garbage anyway), and more than once have been at the receiving end of my fists (to great success I might add).  You are the bane of the my existence and honestly, I hope you are all sterile.  Bringing another meth smoking, trailer park wonder into the world should be outlawed. 

 So, now on to the real fan’s perspective:

 I see it out there.  The long faces, the nervous feeling in your gut, the thought of quicksand.  I feel it, too.  This part one of two will focus on what I believe our shortcomings are.  Post two will be about how to fix them.

 If football were a simplified equation, it might look like this: Coaches + Players x execution= Success.  So my post will follow this format…

 Coaches: Wow, the hottest topic of them all.  Are we to believe that this bunch of former Collegiate players really are so inept, that our team is 0-3 in our Conference because of their inability to call short passes over deep outs? Or cover 2 over man?  Or a flex blocking scheme over big on big?  I think not, but they sure haven’t been helping their case. 

 Being a former collegiate player myself, coaching means much more than most fans think.  Most coaching staffs have a synergy about them.  Having coaches filling different roles (beyond X’s and O’s).  Some are fiery some are calm.  Some are player’s coaches and some are reserved.  From what I can tell (or what I see on the field) the coaches do not have this cohesion yet.  I don’t know why, but I’ll bet it has to do with all of the changes, the media absolutely crucifying them, and us, the fans.  

Either way, at least on the surface, it is safe to say they aren’t all hitting on the cylinders.  I’m sure you can see it and an in depth look in to player and fellow coach’s quotes, you can read between the lines.

 Also, there is a confidence problem.  The players are not buying in, or so it seems, into the offense or the defense.  However, losing as many offensive leaders last year (including the Ginger Ninja) and not having Green in the lineup makes a huge difference, especially to the younger players.  Who has been outstanding on offense: Chris Durham. Confidence.  Tavarres King.  Confidence.   Not that I’m excusing the performance, but as a former player, I have experienced this happen, a year later, we were in the playoffs.

Players:  We, for the second year in a row, do not have a plethora of leaders, especially on defense.  We are young there, but still…no Curran’s, Pollack’s, or Allen’s.  We definitely do not have players who lead by example.  Besides Daryl Gamble, I have not seen a single player on Defense have a complete game yet (yes, that includes Justin Houston).  Inconsistency has lead to our early and late brain farts mental breakdowns, thus costing us chances to climb back into the game.

On offense, we are getting one of the best leaders back in the line-up.  I know, Green may not be a vocal leader, but I’ve seen him, by his play alone save 2 games for us single handedly (SEE: Arkansas, Arizona State 2009). His play inspires people, inspires players, inspires coaches.

One additional offensive note: Aaron Murray may be the most impressive Frosh I’ve ever seen in a UGA uniform.  I know David Greene was good, but his supporting cast was much better (especially his O line).  Murray is getting it done and on a personal note, is slowly but surely becoming Man-Crush material.

Perception:  Confidence is down, winning is down, big plays are down (unless you are our opponent), coaching synergy is down, fan enthusiasm is down, media love (except ESPN, they hate us and I am serious), we are seriously in the NCAA football BCS basement.  Don’t think for a second our players don’t read these things, here these pundits busting their chops, and here these “fringe fans” talk about how terrible they are.  Now compound that with the 1-3 record…wow.

Execution: I went through this week and reviewed every game we have played (every play, minus La-La).  Ladies and Gentlemen, we are about 4 plays away from being 4-0.  “Inspector, have you lost your freaking mind?” Well, no.  Execution has been our worst enemy.  On almost every pivotal play of significance, we have either had a) a fumble, b) a penalty, or c) a coverage breakdown.  That’s not a sign of the coaches not coaching, but of the players not playing…just a FYI

In summation: Our major problems are: Coaching Synergy, Confidence, Perception issues, execution, some bad luck.

Yes, overly simplified, I know.  Yes, I am capable of going further in depth and writing a breakdown worthy of a “Doctorate Dissertation” but Football needs to be simplified, not more complex.

Tune in for my Part 2 on what I think will fix or ‘could’ fix these…

 -Inspector  G

Keys to the Game: Georgia Offense vs. Miss St Defense

As I’m sure you have heard by now: we are getting tired of Aaron Murray.  According to many of you, this kid is the second coming of Corey Phillips, but with slightly worse decision making abilities.  In fact, if I had to choose a QB to start for UGA he would have these stats:

605 total passing yards, a 62.2 completion percentage, 4 TD’s to 2 INT, a passer rating of 143.27, with 2 additional TDs on the ground.  In short, fourth best in passing in the SEC….

Oh wait….THAT IS AARON MURRAY.  This kid is a stud, our present, our past, and certainly our future.  This is the “big play guy” we’ve waited for at QB.  And if you don’t think he should start at QB, well we think you should go play in traffic. Which brings to my first bullet point:

Let him loose! Aaron Murray has grown up before our eyes and has become our biggest weapon and poses the biggest threat to MSU’s defense.  His intangibles matched with his arm strength (as long as he is protected…see bullet point no 2) should wreak havoc on MSU’s secondary, which for lack of a better word, is less than stellar.   Murray is ready to hold the reigns and if Bobo allows him to, this might be the coming out party for Murray.  I hope he sent me an invitation…

Protect the kid! The OL has been a sore subject for many fans, pundits, and even our own coaches.  Why can’t they become one unit, one dominating baby eating, soul splitting unit?  Answer: I don’t know.  Obviously talent is there.  Maybe it is an attitude laden ‘better than you’ party that has manifested itself into a bunch of question marks and excuses…maybe.  Or maybe they just don’t have their shit together yet.  Well news flash: time to get your shit together.  Hopefully the sting of defeat, vocal doubt, and fan angst will light the “proverbial” fire under there asses to perform at the highest level.  Or, literally Searels needs to gather some kindling, some lighter fluid and actually light a fire under their asses.  I look for a much improved performance on Saturday.  If not, we are in for a long day and so is Murray.  On another note, if I see Ealey employ his half-ass, patented “drop to the knees, maybe he’ll trip” blocking scheme this week, BMac should bench him indefinitely.  King being back in the line up should help as well.  He is one of the better blocking TB’s we have had in a while.

Involve the tight ends! If you told me that three games in that our tight ends would have had such a non-impact on our offense, I would have told you that you were crazier than Monte Kiffin’s birth control methods.  In fact, we have such pathetic total receptions from our tight ends, I don’t even want to mention it BUT IT RHYMES WITH 5 (and f-ing pathetic).  A. White and Charles are two of the better tight ends in the nation, period.  Find a way to use them, especially if Manny Diaz (MSU D Coordinator, and a good one at that) decides to cover them with a steady dose of LBs.   Look to Charles spreading out in the slot, he’s plenty athletic enough to make an impact there.

Get Branden Smith his touches!  Who loves listening to TI, is arguably the fastest player in the SEC, and just came back from injury?  Yep, Branden Smith.  Split end, TB, Wild Dawg, doesn’t matter.  All it takes is one mistake, one over pursuing end or linebacker, and it’s all over but watching No 1’s backside trek into the endzone.  10-12 touches minimum.   All it takes is one play.

Of course, there are many other ‘musts’ I could list here, but the post would become a blabbering  tirade (if it’s not already…haha).

I will leave you with MSU’s stud on defense: Defensive end, Pernell McPhee.  He has been very quiet the first three games.  Don’t let him make noise now.  He is all SEC  and hopefully will look more like all ACC  today.  MSU Defense has 4 total sacks on the year, but don’t let that fool you.  Against Auburn and LSU, they saw two very mobile QB’s who rolled out of the pocket almost every play.  MSU’s defensive line is good.  Not great (but neither were Arky’s).  If we can keep them at bay, we should be golden.

Verdict:

With a few razzle-dazzle, ‘I can’t believe it’  plays out of left field, I have pretty good feeling that we will become more cohesive and efficient as an offense.  We score early and often, taking the crowd out of the game, using the latter part of the second half to let Carlton Thomas to carry the load.

UGA 31 – Fake Bulldogs 10       We Suck…

Thoughts?

Go Dawgs!!!!

-Massey

Keys to the game: Georgia defense vs. Miss St offense

For the purpose of this analysis, we will mostly be ignoring both Bulldog teams’ season openers and concentrate only on the two conference games that each has under its belt.

Despite the flip in record for Georgia in 2010 as opposed to 2009 against South Carolina and Arkansas, Georgia’s defense actually improved when comparing the games from the past two seasons. You could also argue that SC and Arky’s offenses are improved this year compared to last, which offers an even brighter glimmer of hope for the Junkyard D. This transition is going to be a work in progress for much of the season and the irrational portion of the fan base needs to understand this. The results so far have been encouraging as bad habits are being thrown to the wayside as the weeks go by. Even after losing talent to the NFL, etc. and an entire change in defensive philosophy, this is heartening progress.

SC ‘09 SC ‘10 Difference Arky ‘09 Arky ‘10 Difference
Points (Offense) 28 17 -11 41 31 -10
Yards 427 354 -73 485 433 -52

A notable positive is the YPC difference between the two years. Even with the Lattimore debacle, SC averaged just 3.6 YPC as opposed to 3.8 YPC in 2009. The difference is even more drastic looking at the two Arkansas games (3.2 YPC in 2009 to 2.3 YPC in 2010). The improving and surprisingly stout run D is a plus for Georgia going into the SEC slate against some teams with questionable QB play, Tennessee and Florida to be specific.

The yards per pass attempt are another monster. Both SC and Ark improved in YPA against Georgia this year compared to last. We can either chalk that up to improved QB play and maturity for Garcia and Mallet, or we can excuse this in the hopes that our young secondary is merely experiencing some growing pains. We’re going with the former.

Now, onto Mississippi State. First thing we’d like to hit on here is the erratic play of MSU’s offensive line. Many times in MSU’s previous two conference contests, Auburn and LSU defensive linemen were able to waltz through the OL and wreak havoc. Occasionally the guards and tackles stiffened up, but it wasn’t consistent by any means. MSU’s quarterbacks have only been sacked five times through three games, but that can be attributed to the mobility of Chris Relf and Tyler Russell.

Obviously this works out well in favor of the red and black for several reasons. One, the MSU OL is underachieving much like Georgia’s own OL so this will be the most malleable offensive line that we have seen to date this season, with the clear exception of Louisiana-LaFayette. Second, the defensive line play from Georgia appears to be coming into its own after players began to get comfortable with the new scheme and its varying packages. Dan Mullen has talked about the lack of communication among his offensive linemen and the inability to pick up on blitzes. This plays directly into the hands of Todd Grantham who we expect to dial up varying packages to disrupt focus and keep heavy pressure on Relf and Russell. Our front seven will have to be very disciplined and sure-handed to prevent outside runs, toss sweeps, and bubble screens on blitzes. Grantham has a very quick linebacking corps at his disposal to throw at Miss St. All eight sacks recorded this season have come from LBs (Houston, Dent, Washington, Hebron, Robinson). Twenty-four tackles for loss are also quite impressive.

The Mississippi State offense overall was more or less shut down against LSU and Auburn. A majority of the Bulldogs’ running yardage was piled on by the mobile QBs. If we can keep their option attack in check then expect Mullen to air it out. This has generally resulted in miserable failure as MSU is last in the conference with seven tossed INTs. Miss State’s quarterback play in conference is dismal at best. Six INTs, zero TDs, 49.1% completion rate, 122.5 yards per game.

That line alone should swell confidence for even the most pessimistic Dawg fans. We expect the Georgia defensive front to dictate this game and in the cases that MSU manages to eek out some accurate throws, the UGA secondary will be well-poised to handle the young and undersized MSU receivers with only one WR standing taller than 6’ and all of them appear to have SHS (stone-hand syndrome).

Special Teams

When it comes to special teams, MSU has looked very pedestrian in coverage allowing 26.09 yards per kickoff return. A number which puts it at 11th in the SEC. South Carolina and Arkansas rank 4th and 6th, respectively, so expect a dynamic run or two by Georgia’s returnmen tomorrow night. Georgia ranks an impressive 2nd in opponent kickoff returns at 17.57 yards per return.

Miss State is 0-for-1 in field goal attempts this season while Georgia is a perfect 5-for-5. MSU averages 40.92 yards per punt while UGA averages 44.56.

Prediction: Georgia’s defense holds Miss State’s offense to 110 passing yards, 130 rushing yards, 10 points.