By Walter Geiger
These are heady times for fans of the Georgia Bulldogs. The state’s flagship football team is undefeated at 7-0 and ranked #1 in the land for the second straight week.
The Dawgs are off this week so there is little chance of them falling from that lofty perch in the next polls.
Since he replaced Mark Richt as head coach, Kirby Smart has been building for this moment. He is a Dawg through and through. He was defensive back at Georgia. He is married to a former Lady Dogs basketball player.
He thinks like we fans think. We want to win it all and we want to win it all every year.
Smart has overseen vast improvements in the football facilities in Athens. They are now second to none. But, most importantly, he has recruited like a man possessed. To paraphrase the late, great Red ‘Bulldog’ Haywood, Smart has five stars stacked up like cordwood over yonder.
The pundits predicted Georgia would fall in its first true road test at Auburn two weeks ago. Instead the Dawgs rolled 34-10. The only hardship faced by UGA on The Plains was the postgame traffic nightmare.
Obviously, there is no engineering school at AU. My third grade school patrol buddies could have done a better job of traffic control.
This past weekend, the Kentucky Wildcats came to Athens undefeated. They left with a 30-13 loss on their record. UK was the Dawgs’ toughest test to date, however, and they will make some noise as the season progresses.
The Dawgs have reached this juncture with what is the best defense in the land. It just suffocates opponents and brings back memories or Erk Russell head butting his defenders in pregame warmups with blood trickling down his forehead.
The offense is directed by Todd Monken whose unit has been decimated by injuries. His schemes have made stars out of freshmen A.D. Mitchell and Brock Bowers, redshirt freshman Ladd McConkey and gutsy backup quarterback Stetson Bennett.
The road ahead for the Dawgs includes the annual Georgia-Florida game in Jacksonville Halloween weekend. After hanging with Alabama in a close loss, the Gators (4-3) have lost to Kentucky and LSU. LSU fired their coach after he beat the Gators.
The Gators gave up 49 points to the Tigers Saturday in Death Valley. Georgia has given up only 46 points all season.
The last test of the season will come in Knoxville Nov. 13 against the Volunteers (4-3).
The UT fans littered their own field with water bottles, mustard containers and even an orange golf ball after losing to Ole Miss and the beloved Lane Kiffin Saturday night.
Authorities should have made the fans clean up after themselves. They were already dressed for roadside litter pickup in that hideous orange.
The other remaining games for UGA are Missouri and Charleston-Southern at home and Georgia Tech in Atlanta. None of the three poses much of a threat.
An undefeated season is out there for the taking!
Heady times indeed.