As the college football calender shifts to bowl season, the 2011 Georgia Bulldog football campaign has been a memorable one. From those horrendous power ranger Nike Pro Combat Uniforms to winning the SEC East, this year has been a roller coaster ride for Bulldog Nation. Georgia improved from 6-6 in 2010, to 10-3 in 2011. The Dawgs will have a chance to add to their 4 game improvement against the Spartans of Michigan State on January 2, 2012.
Opportunity in the SEC East: The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that the Dawgs could return as many as 17 of their 22 starters from this season’s SEC East championship team. With the Florida Gators trying to rebuild under Will Muschamp, and Tennessee struggling to compete in the division for the past few seasons, the SEC East seems like it will be a two horse race with the South Carolina Gamecocks again next season.
The balance of power in the Southeastern Conferemce has shifted heavily toward the West, which leaves the door open for the Bulldogs to take control of the East. In 2013, Georgia is scheduled to play both Alabama, and LSU in the regular season. While the Dawgs are capable of winning both games, an SEC title in 2012 would help take the pressure off of those two games a year later.
The future of the coaching staff The Georgia Football program finally has the stability that it had lacked since the end of the 2008 season. With Mark Richt talking to Greg McGarity about an extension, Todd Grantham’s 3-4 having a banner year, and Mike Bobo having arguably his best year ever as an offensive coordinator Georgia fans can enjoy an off-season free of coaching criticism following the Dawgs’ big turnaround this year.
Mark Richt has said on more than one occasion that he would like to stay at Georgia “for as long as they will have me.” Georgia fans everywhere should hope that Todd Grantham shares a similar outlook with the head coach. The AJC’s Chip Towers reports that Grantham’s contract with Georgia expires at the end of January in 2013. In the article Towers observes that Greg McGarity never gave an assistant coach a long term deal when he worked alongside Jeremy Foley at Florida.
Early Forecast for 2012
Georgia is in great position to build on their success next fall. The Bulldogs will have to address some depth issues on the offensive line, the tailback position, and they will have to pay attention to who is kicking and punting the football for the first time in four years. However, every great team in college football has to reload with each passing season. If Georgia Bulldog football is to move into the upper echelon of college football along with LSU and Alabama, then the Dawgs must strike while their paws are hot.
2011 did not end with sugar falling from the sky as Bulldog fans everywhere had hoped. Even so, the Georgia Bulldogs accomplished everything on the field that Bulldog Nation could realistically ask for. The bark is back in Athens, and more importantly, this team looks as if it is going to have an even bigger bite for years to come.
- Maddawg’s Play of The Day – College Football Week 7 (October 15, 2011)
- Maddawg’s Sports Weekend Itinerary (November 18 – 20, 2011)
- Maddawg’s Play of The Day – College Football Week 8 (October 23, 2011)
- Maddawg’s Play of The Day – College Football Week 6 (October 8, 2011)
- Maddawg’s Play of The Day – College Football Week 10 (November 5, 2011)