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UGA Player Tweets About Rushing Field After First Score Versus Florida

You might remember Georgia’s first touchdown against Florida back in their 2007 meeting for what happened after the score:

 

Georgia Celebrates After TD Against Florida – 2007

 

Mark Richt told his team prior to the game that he wanted them to earn an excessive celebration penalty after their first score.  The motivational tactic drew a pair of unsportsmanlike conduct penalties — and the ire of UF coach Urban Meyer — but it also worked.  The Bulldogs won the game 42-30.

The following year, Meyer got his revenge.  During the final minute of a 49-10 Gator waxing of the Dawgs, Meyer used his last two timeouts.  The message from Meyer to Richt: “You’ll get out of this arena when I let you out.”

Now that scab’s been picked by Georgia fullback Alexander Ogletree by way of — surprise, surprise — Twitter.

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SEC Headlines 9/8/2012

1. $5 million slashed from the operating budget for University of Tennessee Athletics.

2. Advice for new South Carolina AD Ray Tanner - get ready for a full inbox.

3. So why exactly does Alabama play Western Kentucky?

4. At halftime tonight, Arkansas will honor the family of Garrett Uekman, a redshirt freshman tight end who died last November.

5. Urban Meyer, Ohio State, Florida and the “new” media covering journalism.

6. Sounds like last night was a hectic one in Columbia, Mo.

7. Tennessee basketball coach Cuonzo Martin likes the new NCAA rules covering texting and high school recruits. “If they don’t return a text, that means it’s been narrowed down. … Then you’re able to hone in on guys and go from there.”

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Florida Commit To Visit Ohio State

Florida linebacker commit Daniel McMillian from First Coast High School in Jacksonville, Fla., has decided to take an official visit to Ohio State this fall.

McMillian has been committed to Florida since Feb. 2, but Ohio State’s coaching staff – led by former Florida head coach Urban Meyer – has convinced McMillian to visit Columbus.

“I’m going to take the visit and give them a chance,” McMillian told ESPN RecruitingNation. “You only have one chance to do this stuff.”

McMillian, who’s considered the nation’s third-best outside linebacker by ESPNU, maintained he’s still committed to Florida.

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Florida’s Muschamp At The Podium – 7/18/12

Coach Boom is taking to the podium to kick off Day Two of SEC Media Days and Year Two of his tenure at Florida.  We’ll see how Will Muschamp handles questions about pressure, his roster, and possibly even Urban Meyer’s jump to Ohio State.

* Muschamp says the first year was disappointing, but he feels the “foundation” has been put down and the team is headed in the right direction.  “We’re building a program, not a team.”

* Florida will be more of a downhill running team.  Last year the line “wasn’t as good” and the backs were smaller.

* Muschamp points out that his team was outscored 72-22 in the fourth quarter in SEC games.  That led to a change in the strength program and the coach trumpets his new strength team.

* The coach continues with his long-winded, fast-talking opening remarks and says he’s willing to play both quarterbacks — Jeff Driskell and Jacoby Brissett — if necessary this fall.

* On his new offensive coordinator Brent Pease, Muschamp said, “Well, we better score some more points.”  He then wished Charlie Weis well at Kansas.

* UF will bring back 15 of their top 16 tacklers.  This year, with more experience, he thinks the squad will be better.  “We inherited a good, young team.”

* I don’t think Muschamp has taken a breath yet.  Good Lord, slow down.  I don’t envy the Florida writers who try to cover this guy on a regular basis.  He’s talking so fast that it makes him seem nervous.

* Referring to Caleb Sturgis making the All-SEC team, the coach said he told his team that the SEC’s coaches “must not think much of you.”

* No coach gave more stats, strengths, weaknesses, high points and low lights than Muschamp.  Unfortunately he did it all in the span of about 38 seconds.  Best tip: Read a full transcript when the SEC posts one later today.  Wow.

* Looking at the clock, what seemed like 38 seconds was really about 15 minutes.  Which gives you an idea of how much info Muschamp crammed in at a breakneck pace.

* The coach believes Missouri and Texas A&M will do well in the SEC.  Offensively, Mizzou is “exotic.”  He says they’re a tough preparation for a defense.  He also is talking up the Tigers’ coaching staff.

* He says A&M’s coaches put up “video game numbers” at Houston.  He said they took 106 snaps in the first half of their spring game which shows their tempo.

* Muschamp wouldn’t comment on Dante Phillips, the DT signee who was cleared by the NCAA but not admitted by UF.  He released the player to sign elsewhere, so he said he could not comment.  (Phillips’ new Twitter name, for the record, is @knoxvillebound.  You do the math.)

* Asked what he learned in Year One, Muschamp pointed very much to the injury to John Brantley in Week Five that helped to unravel the season.

* New O-coordinator Pease has “always been on the list” of possible hires that Muschamp keeps.

* “In all league, it’s all hard.”  Asked about scheduling, Muschamp wouldn’t complain about having to play eight-straight league games.  He said he can’t control it so he doesn’t worry about it.  Good for him.

* Muschamp said he talked to Charlie Weis “yesterday” about last season.  Doesn’t sound like there’s any bad blood there.

* Asked about playing LSU every year, Muschamp said that he thinks “Florida/LSU is good for our league.”  Muschamp said he would not necessarily be in favor of a nine-game schedule because of the Florida State school.  He said every coach selfishly wants what’s best for his own school which is why the league needs a commissioner like Mike Slive who builds a consensus and who everyone follows.

* Funny moment… when Muschamp was asked about Florida’s consistency, the questioner mentioned that UF hasn’t had a losing season since 1979.  “Yeah, I heard that a few times.”

* Muschamp says A&M is an SEC-like atmosphere.

* The coach says he doesn’t have a lot of social media rules, but Florida does monitor it.  “Unfortunately we’ve got some knuckleheads here or there” who’ll put things out there that have to be taken down.  Muschamp’s buddy Jimbo Fisher banned Florida State’s players from Twitter yesterday.

* Asked about the Georgia/Florida game being played in Jacksonville, Muschamp quickly called it the “Florida/Georgia game.”  He said the game needs to stay in Jacksonville and then said, “Coach Dooley never complained about it being there.”  Zing to Mark Richt and the UGA brass.  Muschamp might have played at Georgia, but he’s clearly a Gator now.

 

Our overall grade for Muschamp’s “performance” based on comfort, friendliness, openness… we’ll give him a 5 on a scale of 1-5.  In terms of breaking down his team — openness — he deserves a 6.  He’s not “entertaining” like a Steve Spurrier, but he is definitely full of energy.  Makes you wonder how many Red Bulls he guzzled this morning.

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Coaches Name Preseason All-SEC Team

The SEC’s coaches have named their preseason All-SEC squads and the schools with the most representatives shouldn’t surprise.  Alabama and LSU each had 11 players across the first-, second-, and third-teams with LSU placing a league-high seven players on the first unit.

You can read the full list here, but here’s a breakdown by school of who was represented:

 

  School   1st Team   2nd Team   3rd Team   TOTAL   Offense   Defense   Special Teams
  Alabama   4   4   3   11   6   5   0
  LSU   7   3   1   11   4   4   3
  Arkansas   4   3   2   9   6   1   2
  Florida   1   4   3   8   1   5   2
  Georgia   2   2   4   8   2   6   0
  S. Carolina   2   4   2   8   2   5   1
  Texas A&M   2   0   4   6   3   2   1
  Auburn   2   2   1   5   2   2   1
  Tennessee   1   2   2   5   3   2   0
  Miss. State   1   2   1   4   1   2   1
  Missouri   0   0   4   4   2   2   0
  Kentucky   1   1   0   2   2   0   0
  Ole Miss   0   0   2   2   0   1   1
  Vanderbilt   0   1   1   2   1   1   0

 

Observations:

* It’s a bit surprising to see Texas A&M with six selections and Missouri with four.  As we all know, most of these ballots are filled out by school’s sports information directors with a final once-over — occasionally — provided by the coaches.  Being newcomers, I expected fewer players from those schools to be listed since no one in the SEC has really seen much of them.  Someone went digging through some preseason magazines it seems.

* If not for placekicker Caleb Sturgis, Florida would have been without a first-team selection for the second-straight year… which speaks to the lack of star talent left for Will Muschamp by Urban Meyer.

* LSU had four first-team players on defense: Sam Montgomery (DL), Barkevious Mingo (DL), Tyrann Mathieu (DB) and Eric Reid (DB).

* You’re preseason All-SEC quarterbacks — according to the coaches — are Tyler Wilson of Arkansas (first team), Aaron Murray of Georgia (second team), and AJ McCarron of Alabama (third team).

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Ohio State Cancels Series With Georgia

Georgia fans looking forward to a home-and-home football series with Ohio State are going to be disappointed.  According to UGA athletic director Greg McGarity, the Buckeyes nixed the 2020 and 2021 games “due to the Big Ten-Pac-12 game was added recently.”

The Big Ten and Pac-12 have reached an agreement for each league’s schools to meet on the gridiron once per year.  For Big Ten schools, that will mean nine guaranteed games against BCS foes per season.  For Pac-12 schools, that’ll be at least 10 BCS foes on the docket per year.

Adding in one area, means subtracting in another, apparently.  At least for Ohio State… which apparently isn’t as interested in playing 10 BCS foes in a season as their counterparts in the Pac-12 are.

Just another reason for Dawg fans to dislike Urban Meyer.

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Muschamp Happy About The Direction Of UF’s Program

Will Muschamp inherited a tougher situation than most people imagined when he took over the Florida football program.  First, he would have to deal with expectations created by Steve Spurrier and Urban Meyer, two men who won three national/BCS crowns between them.  Second, he would have to restock a roster that had been built to fit Meyer’s spread offensive system.  Third, he would need to instill some off-field discipline back into the Gator program… something that was sorely lacking under Meyer.

Add all that up and it’s no wonder Muschamp’s first year turned out about the same way Meyer’s final year in Gainesville had — average.  But that doesn’t mean the second-year coach isn’t pleased with the progress his program is making:

 

“We are where we are.  We’re 15-11 the last two years.  I think we’re on the upswing.  I think we’ve recruited well.  I think our upcoming junior class has some really good players in it.  I think our senior class has got some mature guys that are ready to have a good year.

I think our upcoming junior class for the most part played for the first time last season… I’m excited about where things are headed at this point.”

 

Muschamp told The Gainesville Sun that he’s “excited about where we’re headed” in part because his team should actually be able to run the ball a little bit this season.  In the SEC, that’s a rather key component of a pro-style offense.  ”The cohesiveness offensively and being more physical and running the ball, we are better than we were at any point last year because of experience, because of knowledge, because we’ve kept some continuity with some things terminology-wise.”

Left unsaid:  The fact that the Gators’ top two running backs in 2012 will no longer be 5-9, 175 pounds (Chris Rainey) and 5-7, 191 pounds (Jeff Demps).  Those guys could fly — especially in Meyer’s spread-option attack — but to be featured in Muschamp’s power, pro-style attack?  Fuggedaboutit.  (NSFW)

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Muschamp Defends Meyer At UF, But We’re Not Buying His Argument

File this one under: What’s he supposed to say?

At a Gator booster club gathering last night, Florida football coach Will Muschamp took up for the man who preceded him in Gainesville.  When a UF fan asked him about The Sporting News’ recent hit job on Urban Meyer — a Matt Hayes-penned piece claiming the coach lost control of the program, allowed drug use to take place, and played favorites when it came to discipline – the current Gator coach said of the former Gator coach:


“I think Urban Meyer did a great job at the University of Florida.  He won two conference championships.  He won two national championships.  And I don’t know how you can do that without discipline.  That’s my opinion.  I wasn’t here at that time, but I know that I am very proud to be part of a program that he was a part of, and he did a great job at Florida.”


Muschamp has said the right things about Meyer before.  Last year at SEC Media Days he said that Meyer had been “first class” and that he’d listened to his predecessor’s advice “more than anyone else.”

The closest he’s come to really saying anything that could even be slightly construed as negative toward Meyer’s regime was last October when he said UF lacked the players to install a power running game.

Facts, however, are facts.  Muschamp can talk all he likes about UF having discipline under Meyer, but when he booted star corner Janoris Jenkins after two quick pot arrests last spring, the player said he’d still be on the team if his old coach were still around.

So if Meyer had discipline, it’s safe to say — based on Jenkins’ comments — that Muschamp is trying to instill even more into the Florida program.

And while discipline issues can indeed destroy a team that needs a mix of chemistry and talent to win, an uber-talented team can win with thugs, miscreants and rule-breakers on the roster.  See: Miami Hurricanes, 1980-90s.  Many wins and titles.  Many arrests and embarrassments.

Florida had a once-in-a-generation talent in Tim Tebow surrounded by a fleet of 4- and 5-star prospects for four of Meyer’s six years in Gainesville.  But the success he had on the field with that player and that roster don’t prove by any stretch that the coach actually maintained discipline off the football field.

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UGA’s Richt Won’t Change How He Handles Discipline Issues

Kicking off the annual spring handshakes and fundraising “UGA Days” tour in Augusta last night, Mark Richt let it be known that he’s not going to change the way he disciplines his team… even though a number of players are facing suspensions for Georgia’s first few games:


“Did anybody here go through college?  Did anybody maybe do something stupid, and not have the whole world know?  I know I did…

I don’t know if any person ever went through life without messing up.  When a mistake is made, there needs to be a consequence, there needs to be a discipline, there needs to be a learning experience from it.  I’m not gonna change the way I discipline.  Some people may think it’s soft.  A lot of people think you might be losing control of your program because you have a lot of suspensions from the season.  But the reality is that’s how you keep control of your team, by disciplining your team.  If you notice, we’re not going to have any partiality between the kids that walk on or are starting.”



A shot at Florida after last week’s piece on admitted player of favorites, Urban Meyer?  Perhaps.

The coach continued:


“I don’t like disciplining a starter.  I don’t like disciplining a walk-on.  But when they get out of line you want the punishment to stick.  And the punishment that sticks the most is playing time.  That’s what I’ve learned over the years.  And then you’ve gotta educated them.  You’ve gotta have them understand why what they did is wrong, and how it hurts them.”


Richt went on to explain how several former Bulldog players have benefited from discipline and from second chances in the past.

Seth Emerson of The Macon Telegraph — who provides a full transcript of all the coach’s comments — correctly points out that many of the current suspensions faced by UGA players stem from the school’s strong drug policy and that there’s not much wiggle room for Richt on that front in the first place.

Fair enough, but that doesn’t change the fact that if I were a parent looking for a coach to a) treat my son like his own, b) get him ready for the pro game, and c) win a whole lotta games that my son and I could both enjoy… Richt would be pretty darn high on the list of guys I’d hope to have visiting the ol’ living room.

Things usually end poorly for coaches.  It’s rare that a guy stays at the same school for 20+ years and then walks away on his own terms with the majority of the fanbase begging him to stick around a while longer.  Sooner or later, things will probably end badly for Richt at Georgia, too.

But when the history of UGA football is someday written, here’s betting the Richt era will be one that’s looked back on with much fondness and pride.  Perhaps more fondness than some Georgia fans currently realize.

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Cartoonist Takes A Shot At Meyer’s UF Legacy

Last week it was The Sporting News’ Matt Hayes who was getting his licks in at former Florida coach Urban Meyer.  This week it’s a cartoonist for The Pensacola News Journal.

Enjoying it all — and bringing it to our attention — reknowned Meyer-hater Mike Bianchi of The Orlando Sentinel.

Click the headline of this story for a bigger view of the “Urban Meyer Legacy.”

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