NCAA Football

15 thoughts received the letter “W” and that’s what matters

15 thoughts received the letter “W” and that’s what matters

What a day and night of college football. I guess you could call last night’s 16-6 win “stop playing with food” football games. Once again the defense did what it was supposed to do and for the second straight season we have a perfect conference record. Every season seems to have an off day, which we just witnessed. Call it “survival Saturday,” which is certainly true for us and the other three CFP contenders.

Let the schadenfreude flow…

1. If it wasn’t for Clemson beating Miami (FL) yesterday, that is Orange Trifecta of Suck™ would be perfect. Vandy beats Florida and Tennessee, proving that their defense and latest helmet color choice is absolute garbage. I think Spencer Rattler scored another touchdown.

Vandy, you now have the third longest winning streak in the conference behind Georgia and LSU. Come on Dores! Here’s Florida’s last play of the game (or, should I say, last two plays because the refs didn’t keep the clock running when they should have).

Never underestimate the ability of an SEC officiating team to screw things up…

Tennessee, I hope you enjoyed your short 4 day stay atop Mount Kirby and your rapid ascent to relevance. But please be honest with yourself. Offensive football is definitely good, Edwina…but you have to play defense to take home the shine. Either way, I’m sure millions of Vol Twitter Warriors slept well last night. But Suckerlin’s 63 points? Bwahahahahaha!

Troll hard or go home…

2. Back to our little slop… So last night we threw a bunch of field goals and couldn’t get a single damn yard in what seemed like a million tries and had some stupid penalties. There were times when I had nightmares/flashbacks of Carlton Thomas running down the middle of 3rd and 7 last night. Look, this isn’t the first time we’ve faced this problem in 2022. I doubt it will be the last. But fix it, coaching staff. Seriously.

3. I think the weather definitely had an effect on the passing game, but when you throw a deep ball that was picked off (after you started subbing to the other team) it was reckless and possibly the worst pass of your career Stetson, you may be forfeiting the right to air it later. Now I really don’t think so, but the plan was to run the ball, throw when needed, and get out of Dodge with a win. However, no one opened it. I’m not sure what to think about the how or why of the overall offensive game, but this is the second bad game on the road this season, but we still won. I’ll take it. Am I worried? Not at all.

4. Why am I not worried? I think Georgia and especially Tennessee has been a little guilty of some bias lately. Kentucky lost last week at Wendy’s in a game in which the ‘Cats looked lifeless and lethargic all night, so it may have been tempted — despite the coaches’ warnings — to take its foe a little less seriously. I think in our case, to a greater extent, we had a very conservative win-and-go game plan from the beginning. Too conservative, but it was what it was.

Tennessee likely viewed its opponent in a similar light and was still patting itself on the back for putting 60+ on Mizzou last week. South Carolina looked absolutely rotten against Florida a week ago, losing a completely unwatchable game in The Swamp. Spencer Rattler was way down the QB metrics list, Carolina was without its top 2 running backs and certainly looked vulnerable.

Allow renowned Rhodes Scholar Eric Ainge to pontificate:

On the interwebs, stupidity is forever.

This is why college football is the best sport. A 12 game playoff will hurt him because games like last night just won’t carry the same weight.

5. Honestly, the Kentucky game was the ONE game on our schedule that I was most excited about. After the cocktail party we had to go up to Tennessee again and then two tough road trips where the lesser teams would probably lose one of those games for a variety of reasons. We’re at a point in the season where guys are exhausted and with the distraction of the postseason looming, staying focused is a challenge. This team is very good. It’s not great yet, but if we can get AD Mitchell back for another run at Natty, things will really start looking good.

6. So, individually, we have to give kudos to Kenny McIntosh, who ran hard all night (with or without blocking) and proved why he’s our most reliable back, with 19 carries for 143 yards and our only TD. Kenny may be on the verge of getting fully fit. Daijun Edwards had a tough 50-yard return and Kendall Milton ran hard when he got his chance as he works his way back from what was described as a groin injury.

7. Stetson Bennett was 13/19 for 116 and the aforementioned dreaded “what are you doing?” to choose Dominique Blaylock led all receivers with 2 catches for 38 yards, including a 35-yarder that was the lucky result of a dangerous pass that could have ended in disaster. Still, Steth sidestepped the ball out of harm’s way. The tight ends were barely involved, probably should have been more involved. Bennett missed an open Darnell Washington early in the game on a forward drive. It was just an all-round night that we had.

8. Defensively, how can you be critical of an effort that only allowed your opponent to score 6 points? Well, it wasn’t perfect, but the defense won. Will Lewis threw for 206 yards with one touchdown and the Dogs held Kentucky to 89 yards. On Kentucky’s first possession, Lewis pulled Kentucky out of a deep hole on a very well thrown ball that was misplayed by Kelly Ringo. Kentucky didn’t score on their first drive, but if we had forced a punt there, we’d probably have a very short field and maybe a run? Of course, Ringo redeemed himself again with a brilliant interception to derail a long British drive in the 2nd quarter.

9. Smael Mondon had a magical night with 11 tackles and 4 solo. Michael Williams is getting better every game. It will explode next year, believe me. Malaki Starks and Jamon Dumas-Johnson each recorded 8 tackles.

10. Even though Kentucky didn’t break the 300-yard mark, Georgia gave up 3 (by my count) touchdown passes. Two of those were pick-and-roll types, especially the second when Kentucky tried to make the game a lot more interesting in the 4th quarter and ended up missing a field goal. To the Wildcats’ credit, they really pressed us in the 4th quarter, but our defense didn’t break.

“It was bent but not broken. We did not stop them. They ended up in the red zone and those fourth downs were the difference in the game, you know? Our ability to stop them on fourth down was great, but our inability to get off the field on some of the third downs hurt some.” – Head Coach Kirby Smart

11. Kentucky has become a more efficient offense with Chris Rodriguez back in the lineup after missing much of the early season. This guy is a load. Once again we get a “best shot” for everyone.

12. Jack Underwood was perfect on the night he needed to be, throwing balls from the 3-on-3 game. They’re usually short, but swings are tough at Kroger Field. Stetson Bennett handled a botched snap on the Pod’s first attempt, which could have failed. Brett Thorson had a much better night on his 2 punting attempts, both of which resulted in long fields for the Cats offense. Cold and windy weather can wreak havoc in this phase of the game. We managed everything.

13. Georgia was bullied a bit by Kentucky’s defensive front. When it looked like we were going to run away with the game, we didn’t. But great teams overcome themselves in times like this. I believe we are on the cusp of being great, and it really could be any Saturday.

14. Yes, this game worried me, but not to the point where I lost sleep. It has been cold and until we get LSU in 2 weeks we are really playing on a string. November was tricky because the slate was loaded (at least on paper back in October). Right after Florida is the Game of the Century against Tennessee in Athens, then a trip to Starkville and Lexington. It will be good to be home next Saturday at noon. I hope the crowd is really loud because, well, it’s Tech.

15. Speaking of tech, what happened last night? I didn’t watch a minute of that game and didn’t realize they beat North Carolina in Chapel Hill until this morning. Either way, they think they have hope. Let’s crush him.

BONUS THOUGHTS:

  • Twitter has become a repository for all of Tennessee’s keyboard warriors talking about how they are this and what. I could post a million tweets about this. Today, 90% of Tennessee’s tweets are downright nasty. It is glorious. After all, we survived the Great Orange Rebellion.
  • Texas A&M battled UMass before eventually winning the game. Things got so bad in College Station that the Aggies turned to artillery.

Did it really happen? It really happened.

  • More perfection from Jimbo Fisher’s Reign of Terror:
  • My final four CFPs at the time of writing:

1. Georgia

2. Oconee County*

3. Jimmy Sexton

4. Vanderbilt

*Not really a college, but a state of mind. And home.

That’s all I have. I could take away Twitter for days and not be happy with the content that destroys our competitors. And remember, Doug fans: there is none pleasure I like it schadenfreude!

AS ALWAYS, DOUG!





#thoughts #received #letter #matters

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