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Dawg Fans, Meet Uga IX

At Georgia, folks take their mascots pretty seriously.  When an Uga passes, he’s given a funeral — really — a few words are said and he’s laid to rest with several of his famous forebears.  So for those of you new to the conference who might be wondering “Why the hell is he writing about a mascot?” now you know.  It’s big dang doin’s in Athens when a new Uga is named.

All that’s missing is the puff of white smoke from the Vatican chimney.

And today, Georgia has announced a new Uga (he’s the one on the left of the photo).  Russ — a half-brother to Uga VII — has received a “battlefield promotion” and will henceforth be known as Uga IX.  According to UGA president Michael Adams:

 

“Like many great memorable Bulldogs, Russ has earned the opportunity to serve in this capacity.  I am confident that he will represent the Bulldog Nation very well and continue the grand tradition of Ugas.”

 

Uga IX, the half-brother of Uga VII, huh?  Sounds a bit like the English monarchy, which is appropriate since Uga is an English bulldog.  But it’s only a matter of time before one of these Ugas wants a divorce and breaks from the Catholic church.  Say, maybe that’s why there’s no puff of Vatican-esque smoke.

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UGA’s Richt Expects Some “Vinegar” When His Dawgs Play Vandy

At the end of last year’s Georgia-Vanderbilt game, there were some on-field fireworks between Commodore head coach James Franklin and UGA defensive coordinator Todd Grantham.  Franklin didn’t like what a gloating Bulldog player said to him after the contest.  Grantham didn’t like Franklin bringing his complaint to him.

Franklin went on to deliver his now famous “we are not gonna sit back and take stuff from anybody” speech in the postgame presser.  Grantham was later told to tone things down by Mark Richt and AD Greg McGarity.

That episode hasn’t been forgotten.  Asked yesterday by a Dawg fan if Richt might send Grantham to the pressbox for this year’s matchup with Vandy, Richt laughed and said:

 

“Yeah, he may need to go upstairs.  You know what, I think the Bulldog Nation likes a little piss and vinegar…

We all as coaches have to set the right tone and that kind of thing.  But it was an interesting exchange, I’ll say that.  I don’t think we’ll have much trouble getting jacked up to play the Vanderbilt Commodores this year, I’ll tell you that.”

 

Here’s guessing Franklin would say the same about his team getting up for Georgia this year.

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Moultrie Decides To Leave Starkville, Could Remain In College

Forward Arnett Moultrie won’t return to Mississippi State for his senior year.

Moultrie announced his intention on Wednesday to enter the NBA Draft and sign with an agent, which would end his college career.

“I have enjoyed my time at Mississippi State University and I will never forget the people I met and got to know,” Moultrie said. “Keep me in your prayers and I will keep Bulldog Nation in mine.”

There’s still a chance Moultrie could keep his college options open, according to Gary Parrish of CBSSports.com. Parrish cites sources saying Moultrie is considering, on some level, the idea of graduating from Mississippi State, entering a graduate program at another school and applying for a waiver to finish his career elsewhere.

Parrish also wrote on twitter he thinks it’s unlikely Moutlrie, who has yet to sign the paperwork with an agent, will decide to remain in college.

One thing is certain: Moultrie’s time at Mississippi State is finished.

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UGA’s Crowell Apologizes To Fans For Suspension

Georgia freshman tailback Isaiah Crowell has opened up with the media for the first time since his one-game (believed to be drug-related) suspension last week.  He cut straight to the chase:


“I just want to say I made a mistake and it will never happen again.  I want to apologize to my family, friends and the Bulldog Nation.  I want to prove to the fans that they can trust me.  That it won’t happen again.”


Mark Richt has said Crowell will be his starter on Saturday against Auburn.

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A Word on Game Day Manners

Georgia
Content provided by Dawg Sports.

Earlier this week, I received the following e-mail from a reader, which is reproduced in its entirety with the author’s permission:

Dear Mr. King,

By way of background, I am a life-long UGA fan, raised by two alums to bark proudly and root loudly for every Bulldog team since the early 70′s — good or bad, hurt or healthy, lucky or cursed. I became an official Dawg myself when I graduated from UGA’s law school. After several years of practicing law, I officialy “retired” to raise four future Dawgs, who currently don their red & black and continue the Saturday tradition of woof-woof-woofing. My family and I also read your blog religiously. I am, however, a simple housewife, with no national or state or local platform at which to raise a real concern about a growing taint on our beloved University. This brings me to the reason for this email: YOU DO. And I humbly ask you to devote a few quick sentences to address this embarassment.

With each passing year, it seems there is an increase in the number and volume of crass voices among Dawg fans at the games. Now, I remember attending contests when Sanford Stadium still sold beer and the alcohol flowed as openly as it flowed freely. But even in that era, the loud profanity and rude outbursts were limited to a FEW, select, usually sloshed individuals, whose impaired judgments were tolerated and humored, but always kept in check by the rest of the crowd. I would also add that my ears are not overly sensitive to salty language…..like I said, I used to practice law. But a visit to any current game will clearly reveal that we are on a quick descent into Neaderthal Hell. Every section of the crowd is now peppered with growing numbers of self-centerd “fans” who lack any semblance of self-control, any demonstration of the basest level of human decorum, or any indication of possessing even a passing thought that everyone within ear shot is not interested in their foul-mouthed running commentary. Perhaps the most disturbing part of this experience is that the harshest, vilest venom is not reserved for the opponent, but for our own team and its coaches.

Sadly, my last two trips to Jacksonville and my subsequent enjoyment of that great and time-honored tradition have been marred, not by classless Gators, but by Georgia fans who can’t seem to shut their traps for longer than 20 seconds at a time, despite the efforts of those few around them courageous enough to stand up to the barbarians at the gate. Sadly, they have not had the excuse of inebriation, but instead stand condemned by nothing but their own lack of social skills. Somebody needs to put them in a time machine and hit “re-do” on their upbringing before the final shreds of the reputation of Bulldog Nation is left flapping in the breeze. This past Saturday, our party stretched nine seats on the Club Level and from one end to the other, for three rows behind us and one in front, it was impossible to escape the angry cursing. A very, very small sampling: when Boykin dropped a kickoff, one women in her late 60′s screamed, “You dumb piece of sh*$!” When Richt ran into the tunnel at half-time, a grey-haired man, blood vessels bulging on his neck, yelled “You g^#-d@*^ idiot! You better get your family packed before we get to Athens!”  When Orson Charles dropped a pass, a chorus of f-bomb laced comments were hurled his way. I could go on, but it pains me to even type this garbage and you get the point. 

To further expose their true colors, when our guys failed to crumble and began storming back in the fourth quarter, they were cheering loudly, unapologetic to have their ticket punched for the Fair Weather Band Wagon. It took no small amount of self-restraint on my part to not turn around and say,” Who’s the piece of trash now, you losers!” But, that’s the point — not that you don’t feel like saying it, but that everything that pops into your head doesn’t necessarily need to make a bee-line to your mouth.

For the love of Pete, these players are someone’s children! They are barely out of puberty, playing under the spotlights of a national stage. I think some grace is in order here, and really shouldn’t be a problem for those who have any. It is pathetically ironic to listen to them rail against a lack of discipline of the team while making an embarassing spectacle of themselves indulging their own unrestraint. I can’t even imagine for every mistake they made during their work week, someone completely inexpereinced in their field was standing by to shreik, “You a$& hole!” Even if you think you would make a better coach than Mark Richt, the man is a human being, not an animal (although, admittedly, waking up every day and seeing one in the mirror can apparently cause you to forget.) And then there’s the fact that my own 15 year-old child, who is sitting right under their noses, within clear view and uninhibited ear-shot, would have to leave the game and give up the seat we paid our hard-earned money to purchase in order to escape their disgusting and unending diatribe.

Now, before I hear that it was probably a lot worse on the other side of the field, I will respond to this point with two points of my own: (1) That is pure speculation; and (2) when we start looking to UF, Urban Meyer and Gator Nation as the gold standard for the acceptability of our behavior, it’s time to start looking for the four horsemen of the Apocolypse. We teach our children that they do not have to be perfect, but they do need to be faithful. It’s not that people can’t make mistakes, but how are your actions characterized when people think of you? What’s on the inside spills out when you get bumped, so let the inside be honorable, for character is best measured under pressure rather than calm. The University of Georgia and her graduates (at least the ones I have always been around) are not perfect, but they are characterized as intelligent, educated, upstanding, and gracious. If someone doesn’t speak up soon, that reputation will become the exception rather than the rule.

OK, consider my two cents registered and my humble request for help made. I will leave with this simple thought: Your support for your school is BEST demonstrated by representing her well.  

Warm regards,

A Loyal Bulldog Law Mom

To me, this issue is related to the need of tailgaters to clean up after themselves on North Campus. The practical reason for needing to bag and dispose of our own trash afterward is that, if we don’t treat the campus respectfully, we will lose the privilege of using it every Saturday, but the more important reason for doing so is that we owe it to the University of Georgia to treat everything about that venerable institution with the respect it deserves.

I am sure that we all have been guilty of our own overzealous and obnoxious moments as fans, but we have to remember that we are representatives of all the groups to which we belong in everything we do; when we wear our team apparel to the stadium on game day and behave boorishly, it is a reflection on the university. All of us owe it to the institution to put the best possible face on the University of Georgia. Let each of us sweep in front of our own doors, and all Bulldog Nation will be clean.

Go ‘Dawgs!


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Dawgography – Law Dawg – Why yes, kind sir, this week could indeed have been worse for you.

Georgia
Content provided by Dawg Sports.

 

I must confess to being not much of a blogger.  I’ve followed the goings-on here at Dawgsports nigh on a year now but prefer mostly to watch from the sidelines.  But this week, I think I need to make an exception.  I’ve heard a lot of depressive commentary in the wake of our latest Cocktail Party setback.  What is to follow is certainly not meant to devalue the emotional outpouring that must be taking place throughout the Bulldog Nation this week.  I sympathize with each and every one of y’all, I really do.  But if there is a fan out there in a greater state of malaise than am I, I’d love to shake his/her hand and then offer them a Cocktail drink of their own choosing.  Here’s why.

I was born in Titusville, FL- the product of a Space Coast family.  In fact, Granddaddy was on console when Neil Armstrong took his one small step for mankind.  Looking back, I could have been destined to be a Seminole or even <shuddering> a Gator.  But in what was probably the greatest single even that has shaped my life, a lovely southern belle from Athens, GA made her way to Cocoa Beach for spring break and met a long-haired hippie out cutting class in the hopes of grabbing a few waves.   After a whirlwind courtship and marriage, it turned out that the momma and poppa of that southern belle wanted their little girl (and their first grandchild) back within arm’s reach.  So Mom and Dad Law Dawg with ‘lil one-year old Law Dawg in tow made the eight hour drive due north to the Classic City. 

We moved around a little bit after- most notably, stints in Monroe and Winder- but were never more than a 30 minute drive from campus.  Growing up in Florida, my dad was never much of a college football enthusiast.  I surmise that the lack of Gator and Seminole success during his formative years has a lot to do with that.  That left it to mom and her family to begin my Bulldog education- and begin it they did. 

My own formative years were spent mired in the post-Dooley era.  Watching those Goff and Donnan coached teams, I quickly became acquainted with and subsequently became a master of the fine art of poor-mouthing.  It is hard to envision anyone who came of age during those trying times as aspiring to anything greater than a pessimist of which Larry Munson could be proud. 

After high school, I applied to one college, and one college only.  I got to the University of Georgia in 2001.  My first game after matriculating was also the second of the Mark Richt era.  We lost a heartbreaker to South Carolina, 14-9.  But then again, I distinctly remember it not being really that heartbreaking.  At the time, I considered it pretty much par for the course.  I remember us beating Arkansas the next week and it just so happened that my biology lab got cancelled the following Friday.  So a couple of buddies and I jumped in the car and headed to Knoxville to watch us get hammered by play Tennessee.  We all remember how that turned out.  We finished up 8-4 that year.  But despite some spotty clock management that would have made Les Miles proud late in the year, for some reason, this didn’t feel like a Goffian 8-4.  Who knows- maybe it was the fact that I was 18 years old living the dream in the greatest city in earth.  Maybe it was P 44 Haynes.  Or heck, maybe it was just all those chili dogs with no legs from the Varsity every other night.  But this felt different.  We went 13-1 the next year and I saw each and every game live and in living color that year, from what is still the loudest I’ve ever heard it in Sanford Stadium against Clemson to ringing in New Years against FSU on Bourbon Street.  We would go on to post back-to-back 10-2  seasons in 2003 and 2004. By the time I was allowed to walk through the Arch without fear of not graduating and/or having the ability to produce baby Law Dawgs, 50 football contests were played; the Dawgs went 41-9 in those contests.  I also managed to make it to every campus in the SEC, save Starkville (I can’t recall playing the Bizzaro Bulldogs during my four years) to watch my Dawgs play.

After a few years off in the real world, my quarter-life crisis hit and within the span of two months, I had taken the LSAT, made trips to several of the law schools to which I had been accepted, and narrowed it down to two- one in the city where I had spent my entire life and the other in the only place that in all my college campus travels, I could see coming even a remote #2 to Athens- Oxford, MS.  Ole Miss had a summer program where you could come in early and take two summer classes prior to your full enrollment.  Not knowing if law school was going to be right for me, I jumped at the opportunity to test the waters.  Three wonderful years later spent in class, the Square, and the Grove (not necessarily in that order), I had met the future Mrs. Law Dawg, earned a law degree with honors, and accepted a legal position in central Florida with the federal government. 

Here’s where things get relevant to this week.  My colleagues are Gators.  My neighbors are Gators.  My boss is a Gator.  My bank teller is a Gator.  My accountant is a Gator.  Heck, even the damn kids trick-or-treating on my block are Gators.  “Eh, that’s bad but not sympathy worthy,” many of you are retorting.  “Let’s queue up the violin and bring out the whine and cheese,” say others.  Just wait for it. 

Mrs. Law Dawg is a wonderful girl.  She is attractive, intelligent, witty, charming, and a host of other superlatives that I will not bore you with.  For fifty-one weeks out of the year, I am the luckiest guy in the world.  That said, Mrs. Law Dawg it turns out, is not indeed a Dawg at all.  Before coming to Ole Miss to pursue her Juris Doctor, she matriculated in a steamy, southern town of about 125,000 in the middle of Alachua County. 

That’s right.  Mrs. Law Dawg is a Gator.  The course of true love never did run smooth.  Maybe Shakespeare had to drive home from Jacksonville too. 

So raise a glass, Bulldog Nation.  One ain’t enough, jack, ya better make it three. 


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The World’s Largest Outdoor College Football Poetry Contest: A Fan Poll Before the Georgia-Florida Game

Georgia
Content provided by Dawg Sports.

I feel guilty for failing to give credit to each example of artistic expression to have appeared here this week; although I linked to the first few such poems in this week’s Too Much Information, additional fanposts were posted here between the time Too Much Information was scheduled and the time it actually appeared. However, since Bulldog Nation has been working overtime in this department, I thought I would call adequate attention to the fine job all of you have done by putting it to a vote. The winner, as always, will receive a Samsung Smart TV the satisfaction of a job well done.

Before we begin casting our ballots, let’s review the bidding:

May the best artistic expression of support for the Georgia Bulldogs and contempt for the Florida Gators win!

Go ‘Dawgs!

Poll
Which of the following was the best artistic expression of support for the Georgia Bulldogs by a Dawg Sports reader appearing here this week?








  0 votes | Results


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Taking Bulldog Nation’s Temperature: What Outcome Do You Expect in Saturday’s Georgia-Florida Game?

Georgia
Content provided by Dawg Sports.

As the site activity here at Dawg Sports attests, Bulldog Nation is looking forward to this weekend’s SEC East showdown in Jacksonville with great energy and enthusiasm. We all recognize how big a deal this game is for the Georgia Bulldogs‘ division championship chances, for pride, for our head coach’s long-term job security, for kicking a rival while he’s down, and for getting the pendulum swinging back the other way in a rivalry we used to own.

I have just one question for you, though. How confident are you of victory?

Vote in the poll below, and, should you be so inclined, feel free to explain your vote in the comments.

Go ‘Dawgs!

Poll
What outcome do you expect in this Saturday’s Georgia-Florida game?





  24 votes | Results


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What Have You Done Differently to Bring the Georgia Bulldogs Good Luck?

Georgia
Content provided by Dawg Sports.

We all have our superstitious sports rituals, and seldom more so than (i) when our team is playing especially poorly, (ii) when our team is playing especially well, and/or (iii) when our team is preparing to face a big rival. For four weeks, Bulldog Nation labored under the yoke of the first condition; today, we have the luxury of confronting the reality of the second and third situations.

We all know what the coaches and players have done differently, from changes to the practice regimen to changes in the lineup, from symbolic gestures like Mark Richt leading the team onto the field to fundamental concepts like protecting the football.

It is emotionally unsatisfying to suppose that it all comes down to blocking and tackling, though; these are not robots, after all, and there is a reason why we speak of players having heart and teams playing with intensity: intangibles matter.

What, then, have you done differently since the losing streak ended? What are you doing differently this week to send the Georgia Bulldogs the best mojo you are able to muster as they steel themselves for gridiron battle against the hated Florida Gators?

Let us know in the comments below.

Go ‘Dawgs!


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