How Long Until The Georgia Bulldogs Win The National Championship?

Bulldog Nation is eager to join in on all the SEC/national championship fun.

With another hot summer bearing down between the hedges, Bulldog Nation has a renewed sense of optimism as the 2012 college football season approaches. A lot of the excitement in Athens stems from the fact that Georgia is expected to be among the top ten teams in the country when preseason rankings officially come out. Looking at the here and now, one of the top priorities for the Bulldogs the next three months must be to stay out of trouble. The issues that have plagued the Georgia secondary in particular this off-season have been well documented. Regardless, the Dawgs will have no excuses once the regular season gets underway.

Georgia’s window to compete for a national championship is wide open. However, as is the case with every college football program there is no way to gauge how long the window will stay ajar. Todd Grantham has been instrumental in putting the “D” back in the Bulldog defense over the past two years, and he recently signed an extension to stay in Athens until at least 2014. Jarvis Jones is Georgia’s defensive leader on the field while Mark Richt and company stay busy on the recruiting trail.

As for the other side of the ball, the Bulldogs return six starters on an offense that averaged 32 points per game in 2011. Aaron Murray is a junior, and back-up quarterbacks Hutson Mason and Christian Lemay are quickly developing. Georgia continues to acquire an impressive stable of highly touted running backs to carry the football with each recruiting class, along with a number of promising receivers as well  If Georgia can plug some holes on the offensive line, and find a way to win against highly ranked opponents, the Bulldogs have the potential to become a full fledged college football powerhouse. Continue reading

Georgia Bulldogs Quarterback “Controversy” – A Change Doesn’t Always Do You Good

While browsing the Atlanta Journal Constitution last week, I was stunned to learn that some Georgia fans feel the starting quarterback position in Athens should be more open ended going into the summer. In Bill King’s latest “Junkyard Blog,” King addresses the concern that some of Bulldog Nation has with Murray turning the football over too much last season.

I will concede that Aaron Murray certainly has things to work on this off-season. However, the same can be said for every other quarterback at any level of football. To think that the University of Georgia football team would somehow be better off with Murray on the bench is absurd. The combined number of starts between back-up quarterbacks Hutson Mason and Christian LeMay at the University of Georgia is zero. Both young men have a lot of potential, but that alone is not enough to supplant a two year starter. The Bulldogs will be replacing a healthy portion of their offensive line this fall, and Murray’s starting experience will be a valuable asset in helping the young Georgia offense grow.

Regardless of experience, the statistics that Aaron Murray put up in his first two seasons leave little doubt about who should be the starting signal caller for the Bulldogs. Murray has thrown for 6,198 yards and 69 touchdowns in his career between the hedges. The frustration with Aaron Murray comes from the number of turnovers he committed last season. The rising junior threw 14 interceptions, and fumbled the ball away at crucial moments a year ago. There is no substitute for maturity and the Dawgs are confident that Aaron Murray will cut down significantly on the number of balls he throws to the other team in his third year.

It is obvious that everyone in and around the Georgia Bulldog football program is hungry for a national championship. Championships come with patience and hard work, not by making hasty decisions and keeping your quarterback on a short leash. Change for change’s sake is never a smart move. All of Bulldog Nation needs to be united in support of Aaron Murray. After all, USC quarterback Matt Barkley is the only returning starter in the country to put up better numbers than Murray in 2011. As long as he takes care of the football Aaron Murray is poised to re-write a lot of Georgia passing records starting this fall.

Georgia Bulldogs G-Day Game 2012

The Georgia Bulldogs found themselves between the hedges for the first time in 2012 last Saturday afternoon. The occasion marked the first real opportunity for all of Bulldog Nation to forget about the bitter ending of last season and shift their focus to the present. Georgia’s off-season has been tumultuous thus far, but the G-Day Game provided a much needed opportunity for the Bulldogs to refocus.

Rather than offer a dry analysis of a glorified scrimmage, I would like to share some notes and observations from watching last weekend’s broadcast.

Aaron Murray is the unquestioned leader of the Georgia Bulldog offense. However, both Hutson Mason and Christian LeMay appear to be developing into great quarterbacks as well. Both young men could probably start elsewhere if they decided to transfer. Christian LeMay is a gifted athlete, and he could be capable of providing a spark in certain packages for the Bulldogs in the coming campaign.

Isaiah Crowell appeared to be running hard and hitting the hole quicker than he did during his freshman season. Crowell must stay patient, and avoid taking big hits so that his body is better able to withstand a full schedule next year. A few weeks ago Isaiah Crowell said that he had Heisman aspirations. That is an admirable goal, but Mr. Crowell should focus on staying out of trouble and healthy first. Continue reading

Georgia Bulldog Football – Pro Style Offense A Recruiting Asset.

Matthew Stafford threw for over 5,000 yards in 2011.

Players like Matthew Stafford do not come along very often. ESPN draft expert Mel Kiper predicted that Stafford would be the first pick taken when he entered the NFL draft before Stafford even made his first start as a Georgia Bulldog. While Matthew Stafford’s father is a Georgia alum, Bulldog Nation possesses an X-factor that helps bring standout offensive players to Athens, the pro style offense.

Georgia’s offensive attack allows players to get a taste of what they will be expected to do if they make it to the NFL. The Bulldog offensive repertoire has helped springboard tremendous athletes such as Terrell Davis, Garrison Hurst, and the recently retired future NFL Hall Of Famer Hines Ward to playing on Sundays.

In an era of college football where fast paced, no-huddle offenses are en-vogue it is refreshing to see the University of Georgia staying with what brought them to the dance. While teams such as Oregon and Auburn have adopted a hurried approach to moving the football, Georgia rarely deviates from their playbook. Although when the Bulldogs do throw a curve ball it is usually effective. Such was the case last season, when defensive back Brandon Boykin scored Georgia’s first touchdown of 2011 on a 70 yard touchdown run.

With national signing day growing in spectator popularity each year there is more emphasis on where a particular athlete chooses to play college football than ever before. Quarterbacks who choose to come to the University of Georgia know they are likely to learn a system similar to what they could end up running if the NFL comes calling. Georgia is currently loaded at the signal caller position with starter Aaron Murry, while Hutson Mason, and Christian LeMay compete for the back-up role. Hutson Mason plans to redshirt in 2012, in hopes of having the opportunity to run the Georgia Bulldog ship when Aaron Murray’s UGA football career comes to a close.

Ultimately Georgia runs a pro style offense because it is what gives them the best chance to win. The Bulldogs are looking to get to the top of the Southeastern Conference, and the obvious way to do that is to be better than the competition. The pro style offense helps entice high profile recruits to enroll at UGA because they know that being successful in Athens will likely translate to a successful football career long after their Dawg days are over.