Tonight, I have to ramble again…
Is this going to be like a sad 1982, where we wish we somehow could forget an utterly unfortunate ending to the Herschel era? Where Dooley got out-coached by Joe Paterno and Herschel had his only career off game then bolted school. Because we won’t, I repeat will NOT EVER have this many returning defensive contributors – the most in school history in 2017. Rich’s top recruits are finally leaving school and are all coached up by Kirby before the rest of the country can even catch up or get all the way up for Georgia every week. And, please get ready to count Roquan “The Human Missile” amongst those gone, because he can’t improve draft status like the guys who stayed after last year. And he is by far and away our single best football player. It’s now or never in many ways, like this one: I don’t want to hear any of you say, “Wait for next year.”
Or is this going to be a different sort of tragedy? One like 1946 where it isn’t, I repeat IS NOT settled on the football field because of some twisted perceptions. That year, Georgia, who had the strongest overall decade of any program and had won it all in 1942 (sure 1943 was a downturn, when the guys were away at WWII) was voted out of the national championship – VOTED, which is what the committee does, only under direct peer influence in the room. Blowhards yelling at each other now decide the fate of your ultimate happiness as fans. This, um, ain’t no justice league, y’all. There may be crying in football. Notre Dame was blemished. They got the crown. Army was blemished. They got a piece of the crown. We won out and got nothing. And, again we were an established program coming off much more success than Georgia has had recently, with our nice guy Trippi back from the war, a hero on and off the field. We were a feel-good story and all that. We got nothing.
Who are you pulling for Saturday in the series formerly called CATHOLICS vs CRIMINALS? Because if Miami beats Notre Dame, the Canes/Clemson winner looks like a sure lock for the CFP, while it debases our only outstanding win to-date. Beat Auburn and have Bama beat Auburn and we have both beaten a four-loss team, that lost to Clemson, herein meaning that gives us exactly no style points whatsoever. And, it won’t be an easy out, either. They have scored the most ever in a six-game stretch in their long storied SEC history. I’ll get to them Thursday.
We don’t want Richt. If you have any belief in karma whatsoever in football, or knowledge of modern football history regarding “The U”, when they are undefeated entering bowl season, they are not who you want to play. Ohio State upset them once in overtime on a questionable call, and they went for two the first time they got there and didn’t get it. The rest of the times they won crowns, like way more crowns than we have. Richt’s bowl record was tops in the SEC at the end of his tenure, and the Canes, his school, would get way up for him against the school that fired him. Do we want Clemson? Who has lost one game only for three straight years and have the coaching playoff pedigree that undid Saban? Not really.
So, we want Notre Dame to win, right? That’s only fine if we win out, because if Georgia and Notre Dame have a loss apiece, the committee favors the team with the strength of schedule – that’s probably going to be Notre Dame, getting an undefeated opponent this week and having then taken out Miami, USC, Michigan State, NC State…I know, I know. We beat them at their place with a true freshman getting his first career start. They will know that, too. So what? You think that will save you in a room full of cross-regional fans that have seen the might of the new Fighting Irish on NBC every week. They’ll say, Georgia lost late, and who do you think would win if they played now, and God will be on their side, in the eyes of the committee. It’s messed up. We need a real PLAYOFFS!!!
Take out Bama and I’d still expect to see them again. They aren’t under the scrutiny that we are, as they are media darlings who have been there year after year. We are currently respected based on 9-0 and Notre Dame’s respect. So yeah, it’s as big as any game can be for us Saturday, with a garbage SEC East crown already in a sack.
The SEC is not getting or deserving the respect it had even a few years ago. The league went 6-7 in bowls and may have no second tier of quality this year if Auburn falters, as projected by Vegas point spreads. Bama, who won 1-of-4 national titles after a truly dominant 3-of-4, is probably getting in unless they lose two games. I’ve asked this before but it gets more relevant every single week – can Georgia lose a game and get in?
Win out and it won’t matter.
Look at these potential committee problems:
1. Clemson/Miami – if Miami is undefeated or (National Champ) Clemson has one loss again
2. Notre Dame – if one close loss to a strong team
3. Oklahoma or TCU – if just one loss and finally a Big 12 championship game
4. Alabama or Georgia – if both have one loss but relatively few true quality wins
5. Wisconsin – still undefeated
6. Washington – just one loss like last year
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