The Golden Eagles Come to Town… and I’m worried.
So yes, this is my first post since before the Tennessee debacle. I apologize if I just haven’t been quite up to posting about our Dawgs. By no means am I a bandwagon bulldog or a fair weather fan. I’ve followed David Hale’s bulldog blog and a whole handful of other sources in my absence daily. I just could not bring myself to rehash on everything that everybody has said. YES, we’re 4-4 and worried about bowl eligibility. YES, Richt’s seat will get hot next year if he remains too stubborn to make staffing changes. We all know. The bulldog nation has been bombarded by all of these facts consistently ever since we made Crompton look like a Heisman. I’m not going to talk about those problems. I’m going to stay current and look only ahead. The bad news is that the future is not any more promising than the past.
We host Tennessee Tech this saturday for our annual cupcake homecoming game. Annually, these games are more about the 65-year old cheerleaders on the field and about sharing a bourbon-n-coke and hotdog with your old man who has come back in town than they are about the football taking place on the field. Sad enough for us bulldogs, however, is that Saturday actually will have multiple ramifications regarding the future of our program. Let’s examine a few of these: (hopefully I’ll try not to be too dismal.)
1) Coach Richt has officially announced that Joe Cox will remain the starting QB for this week, and probably for the rest of the season. His reasoning is the same that it has been all year. Cox gives us the best chance to win and he’s old so he’s earned it. Do not get me wrong, I’ve never been a “bench Cox” bulldog this entire season. I’ve never placed the entire blame on him for our offensive woes. I still fully believe that he really DOES give us our best chance to win out in 2009 (wouldn’t that be nice.) But at the same time, it is kind of disheartening to hear CMR specifically state that the coaching staff is completely avoiding the idea of preparing for next year. The truth of the matter is that whether or not Cox is a solid QB is a nonfactor. Joe Cox WILL be gone next season. Unless we want to start the season off with another QB who has little-to-no playing time in a game situation, he needs to be benched for at least a portion of the remaining snaps of the season. Logan Gray has proved nothing at QB. Yes, I know that his time has come in garbage time. But in this garbage time, he’s looked siginificantly worse than Cox. Even if he was to be our starter next season, he will still be starting with zero starting snaps under his belt and minimal garbage-time experience. Sound familiar? Aaron Murray is a different option all together. The unanimous feeling on campus and around the blogosphere is that Murray is the future of our program. The stars seem to align in multiple areas when you look at next season, and Murray is the one that people are counting on to lead them to the stars. It seems ludicrous if we do not even openly CONSIDER burning his redshirt and allowing him some playing time. Give HIM the garbage time that we’re giving Gray currently.
I could go on about Murray for hours so I’ll limit myself. The bottomline is that we’re currently set up to have a brand new starting quarterback next season. This cupcake week is really the best and the only opportunity we’d have to give EITHER of our backups a chance to start. It speaks wonders to me that Richt is being stubborn on this front even this late in the game.
2.) No A.J. Green. Let me reiterate that. No A.J. Green. That’s right, the only player on our offense that seems to know any possible way to make plays will be sitting on the bench this weekend. Yeah, it’s Tennessee Tech and their defense should have no problem allowing us to make the plays we need to in order to get the W. But the fact that A.J. was injured on a play that can only be attributed to stupidity on multiple levels. We injured our playmaker. I’m in mourning. If he’s out for Auburn, we’re done. Case closed.
3.) Defense, or lack-there-of. I need not touch on Willie Martinez. I need not touch on Bryan Evans and our secondary. Go read about those anywhere else if you honestly aren’t tired of hearing about them. I’m just hoping they do not give up the points that I know that they will. Honestly, I’m expecting nothing less than a shootout this weekend. What other hope have they given me this season? I’m counting on our offense to get the job done this weekend because I know that our defense can’t. When have they lived up to what we expected? We expected South Carolina to be a defensive struggle in the trenches like it has been every year in recent history. Instead, it looked like a typical Big 12 shootout to the death. It’s sad when I can’t even expect them to come close to the cupcake blowout that should occur. This is dismal.
I can’t even continue. We have executive elections tonight and for once Georgia Football takes a backseat. I hate that it takes a backseat, but our season has given me no reason to keep it a priority. Prediction? UGA 42 – 34 Tenessee Tech.