It's Saturday in Athens

It's Saturday in Athens

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Dawg's best friend in 2010? A Beaver, and a Turkey?

Does anybody remember 2004? NASA put a spacecraft on the Red Planet, Martha Stewart was sent to big-girl prison, Janet Jackson was dealing with a "wardrobe malfunction" on a grand stage, Facebook was still a collection of school mug shots your mother kept..... and most alarmingly, an SEC football team, the Auburn Tigers, went undefeated and did not even have the chance to play for a National Championship!!

If the Dawgs do not want to come face to face with a similar fate, they need to reach deep into the animal kingdom and befriend the Oregon State Beavers and the Virginia Tech Hokies.

Why the Beavers? Those big-toothed critters are hands-down the most important team for anybody with a sense of credibility in the NCAA. Ranked #24 in the AP poll, the Beavers open their season Saturday playing #6 TCU at the house that Jerry Jones built in Dallas. This will be the ONLY time TCU plays a ranked opponent all season. If TCU wins this game, they can pretty much sit back, watch the top teams knock each other off, and slip in the back door to play for the BCS Championship. Where is the fun in that? Every other conference out there has to beat up on each other, and overcome grueling road schedules to be considered worthy of the top. Man up TCU, and join a conference worthy of note, or schedule some teams in your own back yard, like Texas or Oklahoma to prove you are even worthy of a mention in my top 25. PLEASE Beavers, knock down these Horned Frogs of TCU not only for the Dawgs, but for the rest of the country.

Why the Turkeys? I mean Hokies.... (for those that have never know, a "Hokie" is defined by in the dictionary as an "emasculated turkey". Soak that in for a second Va Tech fans) Anyway, the Hokies, ranked #10 in the AP poll, open their season Monday night playing #3 Boise State in Washington, DC. After this game, the only other ranked team Boise State will play the rest of the season is.... those Beavers of Oregon State, on Sept 25th. So we are looking at a very similar scenario with Boise State. If they find a way to squeak by Virginia Tech, and likely beat Oregon State later on, they too can sit back, watch the top teams beat each other up, and slip through the back door to play in the BCS Championship. GROSS!!!

I do not think TCU and Boise State will play each other for the BCS. I believe either Texas or Ohio State will skate through their schedule undefeated, and get one of the spots in the game.

So if, and I do mean IF, the Dawgs surprise everybody and run the table this year (and trust me, it's not as unlikely as Kirk Herbstreit or Lee Corso would make you think), and neither the Beaver from Oregon State or the Emasculated Turkey from Virgina Tech do a little bit to help us out, we are staring at the exact same fate as those 2004 Auburn Tigers. We would likely play in the Sugar Bowl, against either TCU or Boise State, whoop them like we did Hawaii in 2007, and have NOTHING to show for an undefeated season.

So from this Dawg fan, I will scream "GO BEAVERS" and "GO EMASCULATED TURKEYS" during the month of September!

4 days til we tee it up between the hedges!!

Monday, August 30, 2010

It's (Almost) Saturday in Athens!!!

Four words sum up a passion shared by so many. "It's Saturday in Athens".

In 5 short days, 92,000+ Dawg fans, students and alumni will fill  the hallowed grounds of Sanford Stadium. Every year, somewhere around late May, I raise a glass to toast the day that signifies 100 days til kickoff. From that day on, you could ask me how many days and I will be able to spit out the answer without hesitation. The countdown gains serious anticipation after the Fourth of July, when you know you are within 2 months. Then in mid-July, we get a seriously needed fix, when coaches from all 12 SEC schools gather in Hoover, AL, at the Wingate Hotel to discuss the upcoming season at SEC Media Days. We  tune in to hours of coverage to hear coaches state the obvious. "We plan to attack the ball more this year", "I expect great play from our Offensive Line", "If we execute, we will be a good ball club". Every coach is trained (none more than Mark Richt) to tell their respective fanbases exactly what they want to hear, no matter how irrelevant and obvious it may be. Yet we listen, and we get excited about what we hear, because we simply cannot wait!

All of a sudden, August is here, and we get to read practice reports. Actual news of how our boys are coming together! Less speculating how they will do, and more knowing. We get to read stats from scrimmages, and break down how our QBs and RBs are looking based on 2 hours of situational contact drills. The next thing we know, it's mid-August, and the countdown is getting low. 25, 15, 10 days to go. At this point we have read everything we can possibly get our hands on to hold us over until the main dish. We cleared the magazine rack at the grocery store of every College Football Preview, Special Edition magazine or newspaper insert that has tempted our wallets. Sleep comes a little tougher. The guys on ESPN College Football Live are starting to make predictions and have news of substance. It's SO close....

In 3 days,  a holiday is truly upon us. 36 teams (4 of which are ranked) will be kicking off the start to their seasons. I will be parked in front of ESPN bursting with enthusiasm, and enjoying the theme song of ESPN's College Football coverage. This year, like last, we get to watch South Carolina, and Darth Visor take on Southern Miss. This wil be a good chance to check out UGA's first real test coming up on September 11th in Columbia, SC.

In 5 days, that countdown wil hit ZERO. Cars sporting their "G" flags will fill 316E heading to the promise land of Athens, GA. Red tents with that beautiful longated "G" will erect all over the world's most beautiful campus. The smell of hamburgers and hotdogs will fill the air, and Bulldawgs young and old will be enjoying the fellowship of one another in the perfect setting. College Gameday will be on everybody's TV sets across campus, just taking in the pregame show for the full slate of LIVE college football the day has to offer. Fans will congregate under the Sanford Bridge to take in the Dawg Walk. The stadium will start to fill about an hour before the 12:21pm kickoff, and the Lone Trumpeter will raise their horn in the Southwest corner of the stadium, sending a chill down the spine of any true dawg fan within earshot. This is not just an ordinary Saturday......... It's Saturday in Athens!!!!!

*This is the first blog entry for an experimental blog I plan on keeping up throughout the season. And by season, I mean 365 days a year, if you are anything like me. Please check back daily, and tell your friends if they want to read about the Dawgs, from a Dawg, then this is the place.