- Monday, 14 October 2013 02:00
- Author: Logan Booker
Photo: Logan Booker/BI
Aaron Murray will never win a BCS National Championship. There is a very real chance that Aaron Murray will never get the opportunity to play in a BCS bowl game. Odds are that Aaron Murray will never be able to call himself an SEC Champion. And for you, the fan, it is time to relax and enjoy your time left with one of, if not the greatest quarterbacks in University of Georgia football history.
After experiencing the nine month long
punch hammer wrecking ball to the gut that was coming four yards shy of what certainly would have been a BCS National Championship last season, I found the loss to Missouri (which handed Aaron Murray and the Dawgs the same fate as that Alabama loss last year) exceptionally easy on the stomach.
The very moment when the clock showed all zeroes in Sanford Stadium this past Saturday, and the score reflected Missouri having more points than UGA, it was already too late to dwell over what might have been or what went wrong. None of that speculation is going to help the team or your personal well being.
Instead, knowing there was not going to be any special replay, or any successful protest of any sort to reverse the score, I felt an odd sense of relief in knowing that all stress for this season had been lifted. And this time we have the chance to enjoy the artistry of Aaron Murray for half a season before we all get a little dusty-eyed on Senior Day in Sanford Stadium, and cheer him on at a bowl game during a warm-weathered, post-Christmas vacation.
After losing to Alabama in the fashion UGA did, the fans had to endure a full month of not being able to immediately play somebody else to gather any sort of moral retribution. And when we finally did, it was fun beating Nebraska, but a week afterwards we were all forced to watch our BCS crystal football lifted up into the air by a smirking, unhappy, Napoleon-type Nick Saban….. again.
It hurt. And it hurt badly.
Photo: Logan Booker/BI
But now, in 2013, the week after the wrecking ball came at us in a much gentler manner, there is solace in knowing we get to play Vanderbilt in just a few short days. There is a peace to be found in the fact that more memorable moments are going to be made over the next two months plus.
Aaron Murray and the Dawgs can now play as if they have nothing to lose, because they simply do not have anything to lose. They had their chance to do something very special this season, but for more reasons than one, that window of opportunity has closed itself.
You, like many others, can point to that injury bug that traveled with the team to Clemson, hitched a ride back to Georgia to play LSU, and stayed with the team for the trip to Tennessee. It sucked the life out of the offense.
You can also blame a defense that has trotted out a hoard of true freshman to run a secondary against some of the greatest quarterbacks in college football today, while playing a scheme none of them ever ran in high school. But all of that is moot now.
(If anything, regarding the defense, take a moment to realize that all those freshman playing now, should lead to some pretty thick skin by the time their junior and senior seasons roll around.)
While being in the thick of the BCS title hunt is fun, and is the ultimate goal of 120 eligible teams every summer, it proves to be extremely stressful. And the moment when that goal officially becomes unachievable… it hurts. But with so many games left, I foresee some really, really fun days ahead against rivals who we love to beat. The difference now, is a loss to those teams would not hurt nearly as bad on the national prominence scale.
Aaron Murray now has 112 passing touchdowns after racking up three more in the loss to Missouri. The all-time SEC leader, Florida’s Danny Wuerffel, completed 114. While I cannot wait to watch Murray sling the ball into the endzone next week in Nashville, I am secretly hoping he only has two passing touchdowns, tying Wuerffel’s record, and setting the record up to be broken in Jacksonville. That will be a special moment.
Photo: Logan Booker/BI
There will be many things that will happen between now and the BCS Championship game – which will not involve UGA yet again – that will make you laugh, smile, and cry over your love for the UGA program. Chances are, Murray will headline the majority of them. And for positive purposes.
Beyond the records, and there will be many when it’s over, Murray has been a model citizen during his time in Athens. I have little doubt that I will be telling my children and grandchildren about the memories that have been created when Murray took snaps wearing that beautiful red helmet. Some of his records will stand for a very, very long time, and you can always smile and remember the moments that have already happened, and those that are about to be etched into your brain, every time you see a record list graphic with his contagious baby-faced smile sitting at the top.
The 2013 National Championship was lost on Saturday. And there is nothing you, or this team can do about it. What was won, however, is the peace of mind I implore all of you to gain when it comes to the remaining seven or eight games on this year’s schedule. Enjoy them! Enjoy #11 taking his victory lap on a career that deserves a crown, even though the biggest of crowns will never rest on his head.