At the University of Georgia the expectation is to win championships. Not only SEC Championships but also National Championships. After back-to-back SEC East titles, an SEC Championship victory, Rose Bowl victory and National Championship appearance the Dawgs give the impression of being ready to take the next step. In recruiting and winter workouts there appears to be an air of confidence coming from the Butts-Mehre. With Signing Day in the books and the key additions coming through the infamous Transfer Portal, I will give you three reasons for extraordinary expectations in 2019.
#1 – ELITE Offensive Line
The 2019 edition of Pittman’s Great Wall of Athens is without question the top offensive line unit in the country. Offensive tackles Andrew Thomas and Isaiah Wilson are both sure fire 1st Round NFL Draft picks in 2020 while Cade Mays may be the best backup offensive tackle in America. On the interior offensive line the Dawgs are stacked with depth with the return of Solomon Kindley, Ben Cleveland, Trey Hill, Jamaree Salyer and the arrival of 5-Star recruit Clay Webb. In 2018, this unit struggled to reach the high expectations but that was in large part due to a combination of injury and inexperience. However, those injuries may have been a blessing in disguise as the Dawgs learned a great deal about young players like Mays and Hill and created tremendous depth. This unit is not only monstrous, but also athletic, intelligent and extremely powerful.
#2 – There Is NO QUESTION Whose Team This Is
In 2020, this is Jake Fromm’s team. There is absolutely zero question who is QB1 in Athens and Fromm is ready to take this team to the promise land. Early in 2019 it was abundantly clear that Fromm was pressing with Justin Fields nipping at his heels. It must have been an uncomfortable position for a young man that as a true freshmen led the Dawgs to their first National Championship appearance since 1982, to have a five star quarterback sign that was deemed to be the type of transcendent talent it would take to finally bring another title to Athens. Fromm looked uncomfortable and uncertain and it showed on Saturdays. Then, in the off week between the debacle at LSU and The World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party the staff made the decision to make it known that this was Fromm’s team. Fromm played every snap against the Gators and never looked back. In 2020, the entire Bulldog Nation should expect to see many Brady-esque performances out of Fromm.
#3 – The Return of the SAVAGES
In 2018, the “Savage Pads” made their debut in Athens but after the loss of Roquan Smith, Lorenzo Carter, Davin Bellamy, John Atkins, Trenton Thompson and others the UGA defense took a step back. Still a solid unit, the Dawgs defense did not have the same bite. However, with outstanding back-to-back recruiting classes on the defensive side of the ball the Junkyard Dawgs will be let off the leash in 2019. The Dawgs have made tremendous strides since Coach Smart arrived in Athens with recruiting players with tremendous length, speed and physicality and it will pay off on the field this season. I firmly believe this will be the best unit Kirby Smart has put on the field during his tenure at UGA.
What has you fired up for 2019?