The Dawg Bones: Georgia vs. Kentucky

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The Dawg Bones: Georgia vs. Kentucky

George Pickens (1)
George Pickens (1)

DAWG BONE OFFENSE – PUSH

The Georgia offense was abysmal against the Gamecocks. The play calling lacked imagination, the execution was non-existent and the adjustments were nowhere to be found. It was also shocking to see the offensive line dominated by the South Carolina defensive line. Meanwhile, Kentucky came up with a very creative game plan against Arkansas with star wide receiver Lynn Bowden playing quarterback. The Wildcats were run-heavy and imposed their will despite the fact the Arkansas defense knew what was coming.

On Saturday, the Dawgs will need to show more creativity because Kentucky will come in with the same game plan as South Carolina. Load the box to stop the run and take away the short and intermediate passing game and force the Dawgs receivers to create separation downfield. The scenario will be the same for the Kentucky offense who will face a UGA defense focused on stopping the run. It is impossible to give either team an advantage on offense.

Bulldog D-lineman Julian Rochester (5) applies pressure to Wildcat QB - Georgia vs. Kentucky, Saturday, November 18, 2017
Bulldog D-lineman Julian Rochester (5) applies pressure to Wildcat QB – Georgia vs. Kentucky, Saturday, November 18, 2017

DAWG BONE DEFENSE – GEORGIA

The one unit that showed up ready to play for the Dawgs on Saturday was the defense. Despite the offense turning the ball over four times the defense only allowed 10 points in regulation. Meanwhile, the Kentucky defense played very well against the pass but was vulnerable against the run allowing over six yards per carry.

Georgia takes home the Dawg Bone on defense because they are the one unit that has played well every week this season. The veterans have been consistent and Nakobe Dean, Nolan Smith, and other freshmen are beginning to make a name for themselves. This unit has a ton of speed and the tackling has continued to improve every week. Meanwhile, Kentucky’s defense has been solid this season but has not lived up to preseason expectations. Their lack of speed at the linebacker position and inability to stop the run are liabilities.

Jake Camarda (90)
Jake Camarda (90)

DAWG BONE SPECIAL TEAMS – PUSH

On Saturday, what could go wrong did go wrong including Rodrigo Blankenship having one field goal blocked and missing the game-tying field goal in overtime. It was also extremely disappointing that the Dawgs did not give Blankenship the opportunity to kick the game-winning field goal on 3rd Down before time expired. Also, disappointing was a fair catch on every punt return. The one thing that did go right was Jake Camarda booming the ball on numerous punts. Kentucky has struggled on field goals but their punting has been elite through the first six weeks. Lynn Bowden, Jr. is a weapon on both kick and punt return teams. Therefore, Kentucky and Georgia split the Dawg Bone.

Kirby Smart during the 2018 Georgia-Florida game
Kirby Smart during the 2018 Georgia-Florida game

DAWG BONE COACHING – PUSH

Georgia and South Carolina share the coaching Dawg Bone. There is no question that Georgia was not prepared for the game against South Carolina. The team was flat in warm-ups and it carried over into the start of the game. As stated above, the offensive game plan lacked imagination and the adjustments were non-existent. Meanwhile, Mark Stoops and Kentucky came up with a great game plan to defeat Arkansas with a wide receiver playing quarterback. Until Georgia shows creativity on offense and instills a killer instinct it is difficult to give the Dawgs the coaching advantage against any opponent.

DAWG BONE OVERALL – PUSH

If the South Carolina game taught us anything, it is that you can’t win on talent alone. There is no question Georgia has more talent than Kentucky and on paper, this should be a blowout. However, the game is played on the field and Georgia is a beaten, battered and deflated team. The Dawgs still control their own destiny and on Saturday we will find out if the Dawgs are ready to fight or if they are going to fold. Nobody, including Coach Smart, will know until the clock strikes zero on Saturday in Athens. For that reason, it is impossible to give the Dawgs the Dawg Bone.

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Matthew “Huck” Pasek was born into a family of Georgia Bulldogs. Huck’s father, Gary, graduated from UGA in 1976 and became a high school chemistry teacher at Peachtree HS in Dunwoody, GA where he coached alongside Georgia High School football legend T. McFerrrin. Gary’s love of football, especially Georgia football, was passed along to his son. Huck lives in Belmont, NC with his wife, Whitney, and works in Financial Services Litigation. In his spare time he is an avid golfer, movie fanatic and habitual traveler to St. Simons Island with his wife “just to get away”. The moniker ImYourHuckleberry arose from his favorite movie, Tombstone, and character Doc Holiday’s famous line, “I’m Your Huckleberry”. Matthew was never one to shy away from a confrontation or debate, thus the nickname instantly stuck.