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Post Lucky 13

Wednesday August 26, 2009

The preseason AP poll came out over the weekend, and I doubt anyone was suprised to see the Dawgs ranked #13. After all, #13 was Georgia’s position in the coaches poll released earlier this month. Even Phil Steele, who’s occasionally gone against the grain when it comes to Georgia’s outlook, pegged the Dawgs at #13. Georgia’s ranking in Chris Stassen’s preseason consensus, which annually aggregates the various preseason polls, is – wait for it – right there between #12 and #14.

What does #13 mean? Georgia’s #13 finish a year ago meant a 10-3 record, a second-place finish in the SEC East, and a New Year’s Day bowl in Florida. A year ago that was considered a disappointing result relative to the preseason #1 ranking.

Do you agree with the consensus that Georgia will finish 2009 in the same place they ended up last January? If the consensus is correct, Georgia’s three losses in 2009 would come against Oklahoma State, LSU, and of course Florida. Would that be a disappointment? Of course those aren’t the only three teams on the schedule capable of beating Georgia. Even Tennessee and Auburn, though down and sorting things out, are rivals with plenty of pride and firepower to present a challenge.

A 10-3 season might sound about right to a lot of people, but Kyle doesn’t buy it. I get where he’s coming from – the mid-teens isn’t really going out on a limb – but I also don’t see it as a given that the season will swing in one of two very different directions.

What is more likely to swing one way or the other are the expectations within the season.

Blutarsky had a great point a few weeks ago: if Georgia wins the opener, all bets are off. The Dawgs will have beaten a top 10 team on the road in front of a national TV audience. As much as many fans (and sadly even some coaches and players) would prefer to avoid the attention, pressure, and expectations of a year ago, there won’t be anywhere to hide should the team rise to the challenge in the first game.

Similarly, it’s pretty easy to guess how fans would react to a loss in the opener. Fire this coach or that (we can guess who’s likely to be at the top of the list). There would almost surely be a quarterback controversy. The South Carolina game would become a toss-up, and we’d see dire forecasts for a long, long season.

Either way, the preseason ranking and expectations are out the window as soon as we kick off next week.

One Response to 'Lucky 13'

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  • I believe we will lose 2-3 games but not necessarily those games in particular. We can win at OKST and maybe beat LSU at home, but we could easily drop a SEC road game.

    I think we will play Florida tougher this year but I still don’t see a W.