Mar 23, 2011

UGA Returning Percentages 2011 Edition: Rushing

Yes I am reusing my photos.

So now football practice has resumed and it's springtime, which means there's really not going to be any real news other than funny little anecdotes and interviews with players/coaches for a while.  That means it's time for the fun stuff: NUMBERS.

You may remember last year when I looked at the numbers of what percentage of yards, touchdowns, tackles, sacks, and other fun stats were returning for Georgia's team. Maybe the most exciting fact I found was that UGA was returning EVERY rushing yard from 2009 to 2010.  Of course, that changed slightly when only days later running back Dontavius Jackson decided to transfer, leaving us 38 yards shy of that achievement.  But still, I thought that the returning rushing experience was a great sign for how the team would perform in that area in the fall of 2010, and I even found an interesting pattern that showed a correlation between large returning rushing percentages and success in the following season.  Needless to say, that didn't turn out to be the case in 2010.

But why not look at it again for this year?

Going into 2011, UGA is once again losing very little from the rushing department (percentage-wise).  This is mostly due to Georgia losing no running backs, but both experienced fullbacks (Shaun Chapas, Fred Munzenmaier) have departed, along with AJ Green and Logan Gray (both having a handful of rushing yards last season).

Even with those four players leaving and taking a total of 118 yards with them, the numbers look very, very nice.

  • UGA is losing about 6% of the 1854 rushing yards from 2010, which means a return of 94%.
  • Shaun Chapas did have 2 rushing TDs in 2010 which accounted for 9.5% of the 21 total rushing touchdowns, so without those, UGA returns just over 90% of rushing scores.

Now of course in 2010, the returning rushing percentages didn't account to much, which was unusual according to recent trends.  We'll have to wait and see if things will be different this season, and we have yet to see how Ken Malcome or new recruit Isaiah Crowell might contribute to the rushing numbers.

Mar 18, 2011

Bulldog vs. Husky: Real Puppy Fight (YouTube Video)

A quick YouTube search reveals many previous battles between Bulldogs and Huskies.  This is clearly a long, underrated rivalry in the history of dogs.

The Fake "Dawgs" Must Go Down Tonight

As you may or may not know, the University of Washington likes to refer to their mascot, the Huskies, as "Dawgs."  Firstly, the word "dog" is no where in their mascot name.  As many have said, they aren't the "Huskiedogs."  Washington fans like to claim that the "w" in "Dawgs" stands for Washington.  Then I ask them what the "a" stands for.

Second, their live mascot (named Dubs) isn't even a real husky.  It's a malamute.

What are these people trying to pull here?  Their mascot is a farce.

Of course, no one outside of Washington really calls them the Dawgs (while it's universally known that the true Dawgs are UGA), and it's likely that not many know of the malamute named Dubs, while Uga is the most popular mascot in the country.  And clearly "Dawgs" is a word modeled after the Southern pronunciation of "Dogs," as in part of the word "Bulldogs."

In a match between the real Dawgs and the Huskies MalamuteDawgs, there can only be one true Dawg.  Let's do this UGA.

Mar 17, 2011

Aaron Murray: Football Assassin (YouTube video)

I'm being told by multiple sources that this is a video of Aaron Murray attempting a QB trick shot on the beach in Key West for spring break.

My question: Did he fail.... or succeed?

Mar 13, 2011

Haters Gonna' Hate: UGA a 10 seed in NCAAT

I will admit, I don't know too much about the NCAA tournament selection process.  But I did find it strange how the "experts" and media types were going back and forth on Georgia.  Almost every prognosticator seemed to say UGA would either be one of the last four teams in, or one of the last four out.  But it turns out that none of them were correct, and Georgia ends up as a 10 seed, facing 7th seeded Washington in Charlotte on Friday.

I'm surprised, but only because I've been hearing bad things so frequently the last few days about this.  I don't care whether it's deserved or not; I'm just happy to see the Dawgs earning a spot in the big tournament for once.

Mar 12, 2011

Georgia Football: What's the Level of Excitement?

It usually seems like the first day of spring football practice is big news.  This year, the coverage appears to be lacking, and so does the interest.  Granted, usually the basketball team isn't actually in contention for the NCAA tournament, and there is a 2 week hiatus between the first practice and the next.  But is it possible that there's a lower excitement level in general toward Georgia football at the moment?  Did a 6-7 season bring a feeling of cautiousness, perhaps even nervousness, about the coming year in Georgia football?

I started thinking about the type of season that produces the most excitement from a college football fan base, and that would have to be a nearly undefeated season, with a win in a BCS bowl, and returning stars.  In other words, 2008 was the optimal year for excitement in UGA football.  They were coming off an 11-2 season, a blowout win in the Sugar Bowl, and returning huge names in Stafford and Moreno.  Add to that the recruiting hype of a player like AJ Green, a #1 pre-season ranking, and the cover of Sports Illustrated, and you have about the maximum excitement level attainable.

A down year can bring excitement too: the excitement for change, improvements, and (obviously) doing better than the year before.  I got that feeling after 2009's 8-5 year, which was followed by a QB battle in the spring and the implementation of a new defense.  It wasn't the excitement of going into 2008, but it was still decent.  But is there a point where the losses become too many, and it's difficult for fans to feel the usual self-induced hype of a coming season?

We might have reached that point.  There's still anticipation, a growing star at quarterback, new recruits, and plenty of improving to do.  But the general feeling for now might be a cautious optimism.  Great things can happen in 2011, but we'll have to wait and see.

Mar 11, 2011

Georgia Loses to Alabama, but it Isn't Over Yet

Because the fact of the matter is, no one knows where UGA is going to go.  I've heard plenty of prognosticators say that even with a loss to Alabama, Georgia should still be in the NCAA Tournament.  That may be so, and perhaps as long as there aren't any huge bubble busters coming in the next two days, UGA should be in.  

I find it most relaxing to just sit back, think positively, and wait to see what happens.  As a Georgia fan, the easiest route is to be angry over a very frustrating loss, throw your hands up, and scream about how, "Well now we've done it!  We're going to the NIT!  And we deserve it with how we played!"  But a frustrating loss doesn't change that Georgia has a very good résumé, won the "must win" game against Auburn, and gave up a big lead to lose in overtime against the Tide.  

I have no idea what the committee will do and how things will shake out, but I'm not going to worry too much about it.  Before Thursday's game against Auburn, the general consensus I heard was, "Georgia really needs to win this game to feel good about the NCAA tournament, but if they lose, they still have a decent shot."  Then after handily taking care of Auburn, I heard about the Alabama game, "Georgia really needs to win this game to feel good about the NCAA tournament, but if they lose, they should still have a good shot to get in."  Which tells me that it's all up in the air, and we'll see how it shakes out.  That's all we can do.

Mar 4, 2011

Should UGA Hold Open Tryouts?

Of course it isn't necessary.  Georgia has no problem filling up the roster with highly rated athletes and hand picked walk-ons to fill any gaps.

But Vanderbilt is in a different situation, and they've decided to now make possible the dreams of most college-aged sports fans.  They held a football walk-on tryout on February 15, and 17 students showed up to see if they have what it takes.  

I know it makes no sense at a program like UGA, but imagine how awesome it would be for the 30,000 or so students (minus about 60% females) to have a chance to wear the silver britches.  Even if none of them made the cut, it would still make a great reality show.  Make it happen, Mr. McGarity, and I will produce the reality show for free.  Title ideas?

Here are a few:
The Next Top Dawg
Mark Richt's: "The Arena"
Georgia Football Idol (with judges Mark Richt, Greg McGarity, and Mike "Big Dawg" Woods)

PS: Follow me on Twitter, because it's all the rage these days (or so I hear).

Why Tomorrow's Game is BIG for Bball Dawgs

The 20-9 (9-6 SEC) Bulldogs will take on Alabama in Tuscaloosa tomorrow at 1:30 PM.  Why is this game big, other than still needing to win to feel comfortably in the NCAA tournament?

The last time Georgia's basketball team won 10+ games in the SEC?  The 2002-03 season, where they went 11-5 in SEC play.

And the last time Georgia won 21 games in regular season play?  The 1996-97* season (21-7 regular season record).

*The 2001-2002 season if you count the win over Georgia Southern.