Another Bowl Debacle
Last year was worse. Last year was the worst. We lost to Central Florida, our seventh loss. We finished below .500 and scored only six points. But this was at least as gut wrenching, considering. On a day when the Big 10 won no games in regulation for the second New Year’s in a row. On a day when Tavarres King set the single game reception yardage record at the University of Georgia. On a day when Todd Grantham’s defense mostly dominated and had another first half shutout. On a day when a cornerback scored on a safety and a punt return and a touchdown pass and was named the MVP of the bowl. On a day when Blair Walsh became the all-time scoring leader in SEC history. On a day when UGA led 16-0 at halftime. On a day when Georgia’s opponent had a turnover on their first possession of overtime and scored no overtime touchdowns. On a day with so much promise, UGA lost…again.
10-0 against inferior competition with a 10-game win streak and an SEC East title, UGA did not start or finish the drill this season. An 0-2 start and an 0-2 finish leave a sour taste in the mouths of the Dawg Nation. Murray had a second half fumble on a run followed by two interceptions, for a second consecutive football game. Mark Richt has no special teams coach and showed loyalty to a 60% field goal kicker who went one for three in three overtimes. Mike Bobo’s blend of play calling combining shotgun handoffs for huge losses and unnecessarily conservative predictability with flashes of brilliance failed again on a big stage. The other early games were over, as this one should have been. Everyone was watching, as they were when Georgia had faced ranked teams: Boise State, South Carolina, LSU. Georgia somehow found a way to lose a game to Michigan State that should have been won.
Overhyped SEC Freshman of the Year Isaiah Crowell was gimpy again, and the running game was simply not there without him playing well. Murray choked in his home town. Richt idiotically passed on trying for yardage in the first overtime, and the 42-yard kick was missed. In the third overtime, the kick to extend the contest was blocked. For the first time in school history, a Big 10 team beat the Dawgs. And yet the mistakes and missed chances were all too familiar.