Since 1995 - Insightful commentary on the Georgia Bulldogs

Post 7-0

Friday November 9, 2007

A touchdown on Georgia’s opening drive at Auburn last year was, to be honest, surprising. The Dawgs had lost three of four and were up against a strong defense that had had its way with teams like Florida. The Dawgs came out sharp, converted third downs, completed long passes for once, and jumped on the home team. They kept it up, bolstered by some big plays from the defense, and the Georgia offense stayed on the field almost all day.

It’s no shock that Georgia’s two losses this season have come in games in which Georgia has stumbled out of the gate on offense. Georgia remained dull and ineffective on offense for the rest of those games. They’ve won twice when the opponent has scored first, but those opponents were more forgiving Ole Miss and Troy. Georgia’s most impressive wins of the year – Oklahoma State, Alabama, and Florida – have all had touchdowns on Georgia’s opening drive. It wasn’t that the early scores gave the Dawgs the lead for good; in fact, all three of those teams came back to tie Georgia. Instead those early touchdowns demonstrated, much like the Auburn game last season, a focus and ability to execute on offense that remained with them during the rest of those games.

There’s another reason why an early score against Auburn could have a bigger impact than just a lead on the scoreboard. It would cut at the heart of a season-long trend. Auburn has been a first half team and has led at halftime in every game this season. They score less and give up more points in the second half:

AU 148 104
Opp 63 76

Georgia is the opposite, scoring more points in the second half and giving up fewer even after 24 second half points by Troy.

UGA 127 150
Opp 118 81

There will surely be a lot of emotion at the beginning of this game. The stats say that falling behind early doesn’t necessarily mean the end for Georgia, but if an offense led by a sophomore and a redshirt freshman can somehow direct all of that pregame energy and make things happen early against a stingy first half defense, you’ve got to like Georgia’s chances.

One Response to '7-0'

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  • One more very important reason for a first time down the filed score by the Bulldog offense has to be—getting the Dog Fans off their fannies. The Bulldog faithful have just gotta be “up and at em” thru-out the game. The (relatively) quiet lapses and lulls here and there throughout the Troy game threw cold water on some burning embers of enthusiasm. We need fewer such hush-up moments when Auburn comes calling Saturday night. Coach Richt knows well that this Georgia team responds (very well based on the infamous entire team celebration after a first score in J-ville) in Spades when they are emotionally pumped up. The pumping can come from their on efforts, ala Vs. Florida, or.. much preferrably.. from the shouts, cheers and “that-a-dogs!” from the cheerleaders and fans. The team and our coaches would rather hear it from the fans (remember Coach Richt waving on the cheers in the latest, vs. Troy, game?). –Roy S.