The Waiting Season

The Waiting Season

ATLANTA: Han Vance on Georgia football: Spring is seen as a time to start anew with one foot in the past and another stepping into the future, looking for solid footing. Perceptions in springtime are often proven quite false once toe meets leather around September 1st and within the first month of the season, with further revelations as the relatively short football season itself unfolds.

A new football year has to start somewhere, and the University of Georgia Bulldogs, on a current two-game skid, seek renewal…now. False optimism aside, Georgia fell flat on their loud faces while doing way too much talking late last season, had the youngest team in the SEC in 2018 but played a fairly fluffy regular season schedule which resulted in a back-to-back repeat of 11-1.

Crashed with a thud.

It is Memorial Day in The A, as I sit here in recovery of the opening two weekend appearances of my book tour, for my fifth book. “RE: invent” (just $20 at www.silverstonepress.com) is a fun piece of entertainment about reinventing yourself, the art of constant self-invention. I modeled the book in structure on Pink Floyd concept albums and poured my heart into it for two years. Available now!

Another passion, American college football is a men’s sport played during summer and autumn, with its apex in winter. So, only one season sees no (real) football. That’s the one we are working our way through right now. Summer starts June 21st, fall is not until September 23rd, so a good chunk of the season is actually played in summer, while nothing but the bowls are winter.

With the arrival of the unofficial start of summer today, here in the Deep South I’m already excited about college football. Georgia is lookin’ pretty good.

Losing three of your four top wideouts, a 1,000-yard rusher, starting tight end, all-SEC center, highest-awarded defensive back in the nation (and school history), the only productive pass rusher, the defensive coordinator, offensive coordinator, the SEC championship game, Sugar Bowl, a #1 national recruited QB who will start at perennial power Ohio State is all cause for optimism…right?

Lots of losses, on and off the field, but Georgia looks good right now. That’s the trajectory of the program. But, also, Georgia always looks pretty good this time of year.

Dawgs have won 10-10-8-13-11 – Georgia won 52 games in a half decade, averaging 10 wins, with much of the optimism surrounding the program pointing to the last two seasons, where Georgia averaged 12 wins. Were it not for Bama averaging 14 wins while being just the 2nd-best program in the immediate Piedmont region, Georgia would be more widely-lauded as a dominant force already. Georgia isn’t there yet.

One great season, for me, does not have much resiliency-in-staying power. For 25 years, Georgia has had one really strong year every half decade, never getting all the way over the hump. Never living up to the promise of the one strong showing in the other four years of the term, either.

Five years is a good enough measuring stick, because with redshirting five years is the length of enrollment at school. It is also the average length of time it takes a graduate of UGA to matriculate. For a quarter century, if you went to Georgia, you could count on getting exactly one truly exciting football season. Room to improve.

If you look at the Kirby era alone, that’s still just 10 wins. With the difference (one game) in reaching an 11th win on average, a mythical national championship, left on the field.

~ Subscribe to Georgia Sports Talk on Youtube – it’s on this season.