Entering Homecoming

Entering Homecoming

Han Vance on Georgia football: Even a close win would be seen as a major red flag for (5-1, #10) Georgia Saturday at 6:00 p.m., as the Dawgs host the 3-3 Kentucky Wildcats.
Main photo today of the Garden Club of Georgia, by Michael Santini.

Happily on-hand with Merv Waldrop, Travis Carter, Stan “The Rookie”, Eric Perkins and Daniel Xavier Buhr in Bluegrass Country last year, when Kentucky had their best football team since Paul “Bear” Bryant wore the houndstooth in bright blue and white. Great time, amazing trip and a football meeting for the de facto SEC East championship. Our beloved Bulldogs won big before completing an 11-win season with a Sugar Bowl loss to Texas after a heartbreaker to the Tide in Atlanta, while Big Blue surged to high heights for them, a 10-win campaign culminating in a Capital One Bowl win over a strong Penn State. They had the resume to get a bigger bowl than Florida or LSU last year but were relegated out of the New Year’s 6 by a CFP committee – they choose – which favors traditional football name brands way too much.

Problem at Kentucky now is that they lost their starting quarterback to injury – he had an amazing record as a starter – and previously their top two players to matriculation. When you lose legit NFL talent at running back and off the defensive edge at a basketball school like Kentucky, it shows.

Problem with Georgia besides the obvious pigheaded stubbornness to adjust of the coaching staffs of the last four years and the seemingly bad promotion instead of a new hire of offensive coordinator, James Coley, who has point-blank struggled mightily to start several games well or to score enough in consecutive games, could be one of Old College superstition. It seems.

{Photo of: E-Perk n “dude” in happier, see also undefeated, times}

Athens-area raised Marietta resident E-Perk, aforementioned funny man Eric Perkins, must always, he has noted, drink some type of super manly blush wine mimosa and then the one-time wideout and TV star, with clever Dan The Man on the Weather Channel from the Lexington trip last year, shall have to inadvertently and profusely apologetically hit a child with an errant football, for Georgia to win. While I made sure to witness the consumption of said mimosa at the tailgate last week, as I quaffed a delicious (Kentucky) Maker’s Mark and ginger, the tailgate passing game was let’s say not as off as Coley’s calls and the offensive UGA offensive execution on most drives, for the too quickly-arriving home nooner.

Sadly, them Chickens went and won.

Georgia is just 5-5 over 10 with Mighty Carolina. It’s a real rivalry, again.

…Damn you, still, Steve Spurrier.

Shame on me for not checking the “facts” I hear the professionals who do only one job, for money, say on TV. This was not the first 20-pointspread Georgia loss since 1995. This was the first such since 1994, Homecoming. I was wrong, by association and belief. Kirby was not even at Georgia yet, then. It was Goff’s next-to-last year, when he should have gotten canned by Dooley but pulled out a tie against unblemished and back on TV off major probation Auburn, to break their long mark of consistent cheating-based “perfection.” Damico was in town for Homecoming weekend to party with me that year, I recall. I’d moved into “Pulaski” with my pretty, mature girlfriend, Tiffany Shineman (a big booty Double Dawg).

Dawgs started 3-1 and then lost a heartbreaker 29-28 at #11 Alabama, which I watched at the Georgia Theatre back when Munson was piped in and the Jager specials freely flowed. Goff bounced back with a usual Georgia decimation of rival Clemson 40-14 Between the Hedges. Poor Vandy had to face a surging GEORGIA. The Commodores won 43-30. They almost hit half a hundred in Sanford before Steve could.

Ray Goff, the guy that recruited Kirby Smart, finished 2-1-1 from there, losing in the Swamp 52-14. We do NOT want to go back. …Conservative athletic director at the time, Vince Dooley, knew programs can bounce back and kept Goff, who was eligible for a bowl, although they all passed.

Not saying any of this would happen, and it surely won’t all happen, and after Ol’ Georgia wins it all still this year none of it will. These are not my suggestions, not all of them, anyway. Here’s some out there names for you: Bob Stoops as head coach, nobody has said yet. I was the first writer to publicly say Mike Bobo is all-but-available as offensive coordinator right now. But I especially want this one: Mark Richt as athletic director. I’d maybe like to see prince Dooley as UGA President instead of Jere who I heard is a bad tipper and likes his meat burned to a crisp. But, especially the AD post. Greg McGarity is ready to exit on his own soon he has publicly said, and Georgia could use an athletic director who knows football and understands Athens and the insanity of our football fanbase better. McGarity played tennis and spent most of his career as a Gator boss, y’all. I’m not so sure he was such a great hire. Richt, Kirby’s former boss on the 2005 SEC champions – they are still friends – was a very bad cultural fit for super-crazy South Florida, which he’d put in his (somewhat troubled) youthful past at a Southern FSU, where he directed the nation’s best offenses with total autonomy under Bobby Bowden. He’d be a great ambassador for Georgia, of the highest character. He’d move.

The 16-game winning streak at home and 15-game winning streak over the SEC East are gone. The East has never been this bad, y’all, and Georgia Tech – the last school to win in Athens before South Carolina – will mark my words be a good football program again in three seasons counting this one.

Advantage Saturday, Georgia. I’m still sticking with my 11-1 seasonal prediction.

Went super huge this week at BHB and can’t keep that up, reasonably. Thank you for reading me.

Happy Homecoming to my fellow alumni. 1785 forever!

Finally, gonna go alumnus Kirby by the numbers:

Homecoming games 2-1
CFP 1-1
SEC championship games 1-1
Bowls 2-2
New Year’s 6 bowls 1-1
Postseason games 3-3
Cocktail parties/Florida 2-1
Vs. SEC West 4-5
At SEC West 0-3
Vandy 2-1
Tenn 3-1
Mizzou 3-0
Kentucky 3-0
S. Carolina 3-1
Tech 2-1
Miss St 1-0
Ole Miss 0-1
LSU 0-1
Auburn 3-1
Bama 0-2
National championship games 0-1

$: Want me to – NOT LIKE THIS, OF COURSE – write or do branding work for your business, email me at hanvance@yahoo.com. Thank you! I’m looking for opportunity; rates are reasonable. References.