Sunday, November 28, 2010
Clean, Old-Fashioned Meh...
So, what happens when a 5-6 team takes on a 6-5 team...???
One needs a win to become bowl eligible, the other is already bowl eligible and doesn't have their starting quarterback for the rest of the season.
Yep, we're talking Georgia and Georgia Tech. A game that's, traditionally, wacky regardless of records even if this year the two teams are headed to the Independence, Liberty, Fight Hunger, Military, Chick-Fil-A, or BBVA Compass bowls.
Translation: Shreveport, Memphis, Birmingham, Atlanta, DC, San Francisco, or Birmingham- and you're done before New Year's Day.
Both of them...
And in the year that a team like Texas is not even bowl eligible, Georgia was on the verge of being the same for the first time in 14 years. And, rest assured, Mark Richt's leash would be very short for 2011- even shorter than it is now.
Aaron Murray will be a very good QB in the SEC- that's a given if his growth curve continues the way it has. Orson Charles, while identified as a tight end, is more a flanker that will be the security blanket all QB's have. But since they have the history from their time at Tampa-Plant, it's a natural assumption.
They'll need that once AJ Green checks out faster than the Hurricanes told Randy Shannon he was out the door after losing to South Florida in Miami over the weekend. The defense will need to grow with young guys like Abry Jones and Alec Ogletree just as quickly.
Paul Johnson is, admittedly, short-handed after Josh Nesbitt's injury a few weeks ago. Tevin Washington is the new guy under center and he's had to learn on the job. And the offense is a precision-first way to go about life. It takes a special athlete to work in a system that has proven itself to be very successful when done correctly.
Remember, what's the phrase...?
Practice doesn't make perfect.
Perfect practice makes perfect, and that's what you need for that offense.
It has to be perfect for it to work.
So, what does the game come down to...??? Momentum, mistakes, and driving the other guy off the clock. Just like a game where everyone is 9-2 and trying for a bowl game that is a lot later in the bowl season.
Tech was down twice by 14- once in the first and once again in the fourth and came back both times. Tech ended up with 512 total yards of offense, Georgia had 425. Both teams had 95 yard scoring drives.
But Tech turned the ball over four times- three of them fumbles. Georgia also had four fumbles, but only lost two of them.
Mark Richt is now 9-1 in his first ten games against Tech- the most lopsided edge in a ten game stretch since 1947 to 1956.
Aaron Murray completed six of his first seven passes two for scores to a vastly-improved Kris Durham and the other to security blanket Orson Charles. He finished the first half going 11-of-14 for 220. Tech's Anthony Allen, on the other hand, finished with 166 yards rushing, mostly up the middle of the Georgia defense.
What did we say about youth on defense for UGA...?
And athletes on the edge for Tech's defense...?
But there were two signature moments late...
The first was when Tech came back to trail 35-34 in the fourth, but kicker Scott Blair missed his point-after in 78 tries as a Yellow Jacket.
The joke is an easy one there: Who does he think he is...? Kyle Brotzman...???
That made it 35-34 and, going unnoticed by a lot of people initially, gave Paul Johnson the idea to let Georgia's Washaun Ealey score unchallenged so Tech could get the ball back with a little over a minute to go. The Tech offense wouldn't have had the chance to come back from 8 down otherwise.
A lot of you will point to the incompleted pitch from Tevin Washington that Justin Houston ran home from 18 yards away toward the end of the third quarter, but two stops by the Tech defense and the UGA offense reinforced the comeback in the fourth.
Georgia's season collapsed when AJ Green sold his jersey and they couldn't beat a horrific Colorado team in Boulder.
Which one of the teams fired its coach this season...???
Tech lost its axle when Nesbitt was lost...
And that's what the margins of error are these days in Division One- big boy college football. If one thing goes wrong at a skill position, mediocrity awaits...
But, Georgia fans, there is hope. Carver-Columbus running back Isaiah Crowell was there in his UGA hat and matching pullover.
No word on if he hugged Mark Richt after this win, though...