To be clear, Rennie Curran was not happy to see Tim Tebow carted off to the hospital in the middle of Florida's win over Kentucky last weekend. There's nothing fun about that.
But the medical issues aside, the Georgia linebacker absolutely loved the hit delivered by Wildcats defensive end Taylor Wyndham.
“That was a vicious hit," Curran said. "Those are the kind of hits you dream about as a defensive player where the guy doesn’t see you coming and you get him right under his chin. There’s no better opportunity than that. It sucks that he had to go into the hospital. You never want to see that happen to any guy, but those are the kind of hits that you just lick your lips for those opportunities as a defensive player.”
Curran's not trying to sound like a bad guy, it's just the mentality that a good linebacker has to have. You're not looking to kill a guy, but you do want the quarterback to fear for his life. It's a fine line.
“Defensively you want to go out there and have fun," Curran said. "The greatest thing in the world for the defense is to intimidate, for the offense to have that fear and to let them know that they’ll have to look around and watch their back. Especially for that quarterback, when you’ve got him rattled and wondering if his line can hold up, that’s a great feeling as a defense. You never want to put a guy in a situation where it can affect the rest of his life, but at the same time you want to play fast, you want to play physical and you want to play hard-nosed.”
That's all Wyndham was doing, Curran said, and in a similar situation, the Georgia linebacker would have loved to deliver the same type of hit.
The really good shots -- the memorable ones where everyone takes notice, regardless of the presence of medical personnel on the field -- those hits are what make football great.
“I’m just like, ‘Oh, boy, this is going to be beautiful,’" Curran said of the lead-up to a big hit. "As a player, that’s what you dream about. That’s what you play for is shots like those where you can make everybody go, ‘Oooh.’”
Curran said he hopes to have a chance at one of those hits in this week's game against LSU. With quarterback Jordan Jefferson willing to roll out of the pocket and freshman Russell Shepard occasionally entering the game at QB to run the football, there should be plenty of opportunities. And should one of those send the QB to the sidelines, Curran won't be too upset about that either.
“We look at it as an opportunity to get a good hit on him and hopefully take him out of the game," Curran said. "We’re going to be hungry no matter what quarterback is back there taking snaps.”
A few links for today...
-- I have a story in the Telegraph on the intriguing matchup of A.J. Green against LSU's Patrick Peterson and Chad Jones.
-- Green got some serious compliments from Arizona State's safeties coach following last week's game.
-- Idaho State has lost 19 of its last 20 games and has been outscored so far this season by a combined tally of 191-42. They'll be headed to Athens next year, and Blogging Pantsless offers a few reasons why that's a good thing.
-- Eric Zeier remains awfully confident about this Georgia team, and while I'd argue he's probably playing the role of company man a little bit, I tend to agree with him. There's a lot of room for improvement, which means you can complain about the past or be encouraged about the future (or both).
-- Three players from Georgia will be looking to impress in their home state for LSU this weekend.
-- Bleacher Report finds three areas of concern that Georgia must improve if the Dawgs hope to beat LSU.
-- Mark Richt says it's still too early to say if Washaun Ealey will redshirt. I say if he were close to playing, they'd have used him by now. Either way, Ealey is eagerly awaiting his opportunity.
-- Leonard Pope found a new home with the Kansas City Chiefs.
-- And finally, I thought this was interesting: The New York Times recently ran a story on former Georgia basketball player Tim Bassett, who talked about the racism he faced while playing for the Bulldogs in the 1960s. Bassett was among the first black athletes to play at Georgia, and his stories underscore how bad things were -- particularly from former Kentucky coach Adolph Rupp. It's a really interesting read.