Much like Clemson 2003, Tennessee 2003/2005 and Auburn 2006, there are very few things as enjoyable as a distributing a solid ass-kicking in an opponent's home digs. Yesterday was the best game Georgia has played all year, and maybe even since last year's Auburn game. You couldn't ask for a better start to the start of this four-game road trip through the SEC. Some quick thoughts on yesterday's game:
- Loved the balanced attack on offense. Bobo/Richt still learn toward uber-conservative playcalling when they get a bit of a lead; but they have really let Stafford air it out downfield of late, and the results are beginning to show. 9 receivers caught balls from Stafford, and if there were any egregious drops, I didn't see them. His accuracy and timing get better with each game and you can tell his receivers are on the same page as him now...you're seeing less drops, overthrows and miscommunication in the passing game.
- I thought the linebackers played well without Ellerbie, and Darryl Gamble's 13 tackle 2-INT-TD game is one of the more remarkable single-game performances I've witnessed. The defensive line was able to put enough pressure on Andrew Hatch to force more turnovers than Georgia has had in any game this season. The tackling by our DBs and by everyone on Charles Scott was piss-poor, but hopefully that can be corrected this week. Florida doesn't have any bruising runners like Scott.
- Richt's speech to the team before the 4th quarter was absolutely mesmerizing. Every player was intensely focused on his every word...not an eye on any player was looking at anything else in the stadium or on the field. Not sure I've ever seen that in an athletic huddle with the coach.
- Couple minor gripes include Georgia's inability to drill the nail in the coffin after a go-ahead TD. Acting like a 2 or 3 TD lead is playing with house money is not ideal. Also, Justin Anderson's asinine personal foul in the 3rd quarter allowed him to pad his status as team leader for idiotic penalties.
- Knowshon had an impressive statline of 21 carries and 163 yards. Break it down a little further though: Two of those carries were for 47 and 68 yards. Obviously, those were big runs and I'll take that statline every day of the week; but if you take away those two rushes, he ran for 48 yards on 19 carries. Warrants mentioning?
- All in all, an excellent, fun game to watch. It's always money when you can return a TD to the house on the first play, and usually a good omen. Now onto Jacksonville and story after story about last year's celebration. I don't even want to think about that game honestly. This game is the SEC Championship to last year's ACC Championship. 6 days until the East's rep in Atlanta on December is decided.
Texas is now 3-0 with one game left in their 4-Top-15-teams-in-one-month slate that is making UGA's four game road stretch look like child's play. In a 28-24 victory against Okie State, Colt McCoy continues to operate with an efficiency that would give an HR rep a boner. Give the Cowboys credit for taking the game down to the wire in the house of the nation's #1 team. They sure as hell deserve to hold their spot in the Top 10 this week.
Can't either just Bobby Bowden or Joe Paterno make a conscious effort to be consistently sucky? These rejuvination years they keep bringing out in unison are thoroughly annoying. Earlier this year it appeared that Paterno would cruise to the finish line in their battle to outlive the other on the sidelines (or, in Paternos' case, press box), but with Florida State now 7-1 heading into their matchup against a "now-thats-more-like-it" Tech team, they appear very much for real, at least as much as contending for the ACC crown can appear "for real."
(BTW: Anyone want to tell me why in the hell FSU/VT was on ABC in the Atlanta market at 3:30? Did ANY non-partisan fan want to watch that over the Texas/OSU game? It's not like the Atlanta-area is flooded with FSU and VT grads, so throw us a frickin' bone here, man. Also, not that I looked too hard, but was Georgia Tech's game even televised? We couldn't find it. If I was a Tech grad, I'd be furious I was forced to sit through that FSU game rather than my team's homecoming tilt. Alright, media-related rant over.)
Yeah, looks like I was probably pretty wrong about Texas Tech following their 63-21 shellacking of Kansas. I won't be picking them to win against the Longhorns this weekend or anything, but how can you not be impressed with their ability to completely dismantle a good Kansas passing attack? And they were still able to light up the scoreboard like they thought this was another one of their Eastern Washington/UMASS/SMU games.
Watching the first half of Oklahoma's 55-28 (halftime) demolition of Kansas State, I thought to myself, "why can't Georgia ever play in a shootout like that...this is a helluva game to watch, and I don't even care who wins." Four hours later, Georgia 52 LSU 38.
I know Colorado isn't anything special, but 58-0 is 58-0. I have a feeling those wins against Missouri will be looking really good for Texas and Oklahoma State all year.
David Cutcliffe continued his dominance of Vandy with an exhilirating 10-7 win, embarrassing the SEC in the process and ensuring Vandy's nice little run of hosting Gamedays and being ranked has come to a merciful end. Isn't the number of SEC teams with brutally bad offenses getting a tad ridiculous? Tennessee, Auburn and Vandy have all been ranked this year at some point and all would have trouble scoring with a slut on Special K at this point. Mississippi State's O makes all of the aforementioned offenses look like last year's Patriots'. South Carolina and Arkansas aren't that much better. That's half the league holding it down with what I'd call "below-average" offensive production.
Thanks to the state universities of Pennsylvania and Ohio for playing a game that doubled as an effective sleep aid. Not even a game of 2-deck Circle of Death could get me sufficiently rowdy to carry on a high level of energy after that 13-6 doozy. If ACC football is like watching four-year-olds play golf, watching Big 10 games is like akin to viewing hall-of-fame golfers who are 80+ years old play a round of 18. It's gonna be a long, slow, boring, outdated affair. Insert predictable Paterno-age joke here.
Congrats to Penn State and their (not all...just some) white trash fans. It now appears you will inherit the opportunity to lose to a SEC or Big 12 school in the BCS title game.
After a 29-9 drubbing at home vs. Bama, I'm ready to give up on thinking Tennessee is a "good-bad" team and just admit they are a bad, bad team. With their season shot, I implore the Vols to use Eric Berry on offense the rest of the season. At this point, his highlights are the only watchable thing coming out of Knoxville.
USC 17 Arizona 10. USC struggles again on the road to a significantly inferior Pac-10 team. Out of the Top 5 with their ass.
Who are the geniuses that decided to schedule a Sunday Night Conference USA showdown (Tulsa-Central Florida) up against the NFL and the World Series? Were Tuesday and Wednesdays not bringing in enough ratings? Why this Sunday as opposed to others?
A 23-21 win in Fayetteville had to be sweet for the Nuttjob. Sure, he kinda imploded the program and botched the school's best recruiting coup, but compared to the current Top Hawg, he's a saint (tho probably an inferior football coach...just sayin').
Notre Dame is 5-2 after beating a brutal Washington team and their lame duck coach 33-7. Is this week they get (over)ranked? Or will it be after they play a Pittsburgh team that just gave up 54 points to a 3-5 Rutgers team? A nation waits in breathless anticipation.
One poll you won't see Notre Dame on this year or likely ever is Sue's Top 10/Mumme Poll. This week's edition:
3. Penn State
8. Texas Tech
9. Oklahoma State
10. Ohio State...I know, I know. They just won't. go. away. But they had a great chance to beat a legit title contender in the waning minutes of that game. Can't penalize them too much for that.
This week's Tacky Two, bringing up the rear of our Mumme Poll ballot are Missouri (back after a week off the ballot) and Utah, reppin' the Em-Dub-See.