Friday, October 15, 2010
The VOLS, VIII and the DORES
Although we’ve been quiet for the most part this week, it has been a good week here at the BEAST. Coach Richt and the boys took care of the Vols without messing around last Saturday and that was just the start to an exciting week. Still flying from the DAWGS beat down of the Vols, some time last Sunday I realized that Big Bad Bruce was going to step up and claim the charmed life that awaits him as UGA VIII and I have been excited ever since. Throw in that this week Vanderbilt rolls into Athens (hopefully without hitting anything along the way) for Homecoming and I’ve been smiling pretty much all week.
I don’t buy into all that talk the beating the Vols is no big deal and that was one barb that was under my skin all week. Couldn’t break my stride, but it did bother me a bit until I realized that it brought me back to all the reasons that actually make it a big deal from where I sit in the first place.
The two games I most fanatically want the DAWGS to win every year are the tussles with Tennessee and Florida. This is tied primarily to my age and the time period I was a student at UGA. During those days, it was the Evil Genius and The Great Pumpkin that were ruining my fall Saturdays and my deep-seeded contempt for those two programs remains fiery and vicious to this day. Against this background, factor in that Tennessee had won three of the last four meetings, all three with ugly, blowout-type final scores and I was aching for a DAWGS win last weekend.
As for a more current motivation to be proud of our boys and their win last week, how about this….football games are hard to win. Any win against any opponent should be savored and not taken for granted. Besides, based on the way Georgia had played the month prior, it’s hard to believe that anyone was overly confident heading into that game. The bottom line is this…you just never know when the spark/break/moment will come that turns a season around. In 2007, if not for a late fumble and Georgia recovery deep in DAWGS territory on what looked for the world to be a game-winning drive for Vanderbilt in Nashville, the Sugar Bowl and ending the season with a #2 ranking would have never happened. Just last year, in a game that seemingly most DAWGS fans immediately dismissed, it was against Vanderbilt that Georgia finally settled on the offensive line starting five and began to find the running game that would carry the DAWGS down the stretch of the season. At the time, there were fans that didn’t want to hear about any successes in the rushing game because Vandy was somehow an opponent of no-count status. In retrospect, that was the moment that led to a glorious win on the plains in which Ben Jones ate the turf and Washaun Ealey and Caleb King declared to the world that “We Run This State!” So don’t tell me any successes the DAWGS had against the Vols last week don’t count for anything. For this DAWG, Saturday’s win over Tennessee was glorious. In case you’re wondering…Yes. I am holding out hope that the DAWGS can make me two-for-two this year in my most valued games.
Moving right along, I am absolutely pumped that Big Bad Bruce will take the up the mantle of UGA VIII this weekend. Forget the succession of kings, queens and princesses…this is the only succession I care about. Knowing that UGA VI’s grandson and a true, bloodline heir will be taking the collar makes me very happy. Everything just feels more right in the world. And Big Bad Bruce is a good looking dog too! Kid looks like a tank. I feel really good about the future with VIII at the reins and I believe he is going to be a fantastic ambassador for the University of Georgia and the members of the DAWG Nation.
To wrap up my thoughts from the week, I will just leave you with this. Vanderbilt is Vanderbilt and I suspect we all believe that our DAWGS should show up, play well and get the Homecoming victory tomorrow. With that said, I will never take any team or win for granted, but Vandy is a chance to continue to bail water and pick up some steam as we enter the final two months of the season.
Get after ‘em DAWGS and keep climbing as we make our way closer to the top of this hole that we find ourselves in. For everyone that will be heading to Athens and at the game, have a fantastic day and take a moment to remember what coming home is all about.