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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Making a list: The 10 most important people for Georgia football

Here’s the start of another feature on Le Blog, one we’ll update every now and then: The most important people for the Georgia football program, when it comes to turning things around in 2011.

The list below is a snapshot, and therefore has an emphasis on the events of the next few weeks, and then the lead-up to Boise State.

This time, I take the liberty of exempting from consideration the obvious (Mark Richt. Greg McGarity and Michael Adams) and assuming one person won’t be around much longer (A.J. Green).

Here you go:

10. Ray Drew: The Thomasville High School standout is listed at DE but could also play OLB at Georgia. His addition wouldn’t be as critical on an immediate basis as some other recruits, but he’s probably too good not to play next year.

9. Brandon Boykin: I would put the junior CB-KR higher on this list if there was a better chance of him leaving. And who knows, he still might.

8. John Jekins/Kwame Geathers/TBA: Clearly, the defense needs a classic, big nose guard. The staff has targeted Jenkins, the junior college standout from Connecticut. If they don’t get him, do they sign another guy who isn’t being mentioned right now? And if not, it may be up to Geathers, who didn’t play much as a freshman.

7. Cordy Glenn and Trinton Sturdivant (tie): With these two, the Georgia line has at least four experienced linemen for next year, along with center Ben Jones and guard Kenarious Gates. But without one or both, a few inexperienced guys will be starting.

6. Justin Houston: Not many people have given much chance that the SEC’s sack leader in 2010 would return for his senior season, and he’s still likely to go pro. But it looks like the UGA coaches are putting the full-court press on him to stay. If he did, that would be a huge lift to a defense that needs playmakers.

5. Mike Bobo: Whether fans like it or not, the play-calling sheet is still in Bobo’s hands. And his fate at this point may be tied with Richt’s.

4. Joe Tereshinski: The new strength coach is known around the team as a hard-you-know-what. Will Tereshisnki, and the cadre of former players he’s bringing onto the staff, be able to whip the team into shape?

3. Aaron Murray: It would be easy to take it for granted that Murray will have another good season in 2011, and be the foundation of the offense. But Georgia can’t take it for granted, and assuming Green isn’t back, Murray absolutely has to be just as good, if not better, for the program to improve.

2. Todd Grantham: Georgia’s defense has to get better next year, so it’s up to Grantham, both on the recruiting trail and in the offseason, to push his unit to the needed improvement in Year Two.

1. Isaiah Crowell:
Yeah, I’m buying into the hype. I was in an upstate South Carolina church last February when a kid named Marcus Lattimore announced he was signing with the Gamecocks. And look what happened. I don’t know if it’s a perfect comparison, but after watching Georgia’s running game in 2010, it’s hard to argue.


<--- Dawg Stephen Himself said...

I cannot argue with the list, and totally agree. The McGarity factor is huge. I know hes not on the list, but do not discount the help this man plans to give his coaches. if they dont succeed, its not because he didnt give them every opportuity possible.

Paul said...

No major quibbles. One minor. I think Grantham is number one. Georgia fielding an old school, Erk Russell type defense (at least in terms of heart, attitude and effort) will have the most significant and positive impact on this program in my humble opinion.

dawgjammin said...

I think stacy searles deserves to be on this list. Even if Glenn and Sturdivant comes back who's to say the OLine will be any better than the 2 previous years. He's also the running game coordinator and that has definetly been a sore spot the last two years.

From a team stand point, I don't think you can overlook the importance of leadership on the OL. These guys can set the tone for your whole team. If the OL is dominant,tough and physical the they can dictate the pace of the game. That is when you have yourself one hard team to beat.

Anonymous said...

Having Isaiah Crowell at the top is silly at best. The #1 factor for UGA is not an unproven college RB. There's no such thing as a can't miss athlete anymore, especially at RB. Cue Marlon Lucky (05) at Nebraska, Darrell Scott (08) at Colorado, Bryce Brown (09) at Tennessee/Kansas State - all of whom were the #1 RBs rated by Rivals (I acknowledge there's Scout and ESPN 150, however I am far too lazy to add those) and have failed miserably.

Joe McKnight (07) at USC was only productive for one year and then hampered by injuries. So that's a wash.

The only two #1 RBs in recent years that have actually "lived" up to the hype are Beanie (06) Wells and Lattimore (2010).

Let's also not forget ALL the hype and enamoration that came with recuriting Ealey and King. If I'm not mistaken, wasn't Caleb touted as the second coming of Herschel? Get a grip.

Ultimately, while I understand that Crowell COULD be extremely important to the foundation of this football team, listing him as the most important component of UGA's football team is awfully silly.

NCDawg said...

Wow. John Jenkins/Monster DT at #8. As much as I want Isiah, we have to plug the middle. When we go beat on the run, and we got beat often, we usually got beat up the middle. I'd mkae the DT #1.

Otherwise, it's a could list.

NCDawg said...

Oh crap! I misspelled Isaiah. That's not going to help us get him.

Sorry Mr. Crowell.

BulldogBen said...

I agree with #1 if only because Richt and the program need something, ANYTHING, positive to happen to help distance ourselves from the stench of 2010.

Also agree with Grantham. He needs to help close the deal on some of these recruits. I look at Stanford and what their 3-4 was able to do this year while plugging in a handful of freshmen. The right talent can help that unit out tremendously.

You should've had Jimbo Fisher on there as well. We NEED him to start taking away some players from UF.

OZAM said...

In the current situation at Georgia football there is only one IMPORTANT person and that is Mark Richt.

Unless and until he can pull the right strings, make the right decisions, and properly motivate both his staff and players the future does not bode well.

ReservoirDawg said...

GM is the man. Lets face it folks- if we were to fire Richt this year there aren't any alternatives. GM understood early in the year that Richt would be on the hot seat next year and schedule Boise. Which not only improves our bottom line, but allows him to judge Richt's improvement in the first 2 weeks of the season after those chump gamecocks. If Richt has a rough start I think GM will start making calls. On the other hand.... I think this is just what Richt needs. He has lost some of the fire he showed as a new HC. I think that all of the Fulmer cup talk had him distracted and focusing on things he should never have to deal with in a top notch athletic program. He should have the time to focus on football. Richt and GM have talked about this and developed a plan that will give Richt the best chance to succeed. I think next year Bobo's calls will be largely dependent on Richt with him being more prepared for his opponents. Richt knows he can't afford to change OCs now so he'll be very involved and if he turns things around I wouldn't be surprised if he makes a change next year or soon after. I could be wrong about this, but I believe Georgia football will be back where it belongs next year. If we sign the dream team, the next few years could be something very special.

Anonymous said...

Georgia needs lineman on both sides of the ball. I'd like to see Georgia play more like the Falcons. The Falcons control the line of scrimmage every game, they lead the league in time of possession and it shows in the win column.

Curt in Thomasville said...

Ray Drew goes to Thomas County Central. If any of their fans read this blog they are probably having a fit.

Anonymous said...

Welp, we've already lost out on Xavier Dickson in the Under Armor game to Bama. I'd say a recruiting coordinator needs to be added to the damn list.

Willb said...

The Falcons are a great example of how Ga should play!

They are not flashy but they do everything very well.

Does anyone else feel a 180 difference between watching a Dawgs game and watching a Falcons game? Watching the Falcons I feel confident and very much so enjoy watching them.

While I love the Dawgs way more than the Falcons watching a Dawgs game is the most nerve racking thing I can do. I am constantly screaming and throwing things at my TV set just waiting for a fumble or something bad to happen. If Michael Turner fumbles or Matt Ryan throws an interception I accept it as a small mistake. On the other hand if Caleb King fumbles it pisses me off like crazy for some reason.

It's weird I can also watch the Falcons win a close game and feel fine about it but not the Dawgs. Watching Ga play Tech this year almost gave me a heart attack. Seriously I think it almost did! It's not good for my health.if the Falcons win a game by such a margin as we won the Ga Tech game I am very happy about it but with the Dawgs I almost feel like we lost the game.

I just hold Ga to higher standards I guess. I don't think you can expect any college team to play at the level of an NFL team like the Falcons but I still expect the Dawgs to play at a much higher level next year.

CSA said...

From the AJC:

Quan Bray committed to Auburn
Xzavier Dickson committed to Alabama

The "Dream Team" concept evidently isn't winning over our recruits.

Anonymous said...

Attention UGA Nation!! We are in trouble!! CMRs press conference was very unconvincing today.. A coach in his 10th year says he feels like its gonna be like his first year!?! .. He's robbing UGA for 3 million a year!!! WAKE UP DAWG NATION!! The whole staff needs to go!! Asap! Geeeeez! We are not getting Crowell,Drew etc etc.. Why go to a program that's not gonna have a HC this time next year!! WHY??

Anonymous said...

I was hoping CMR was going to tell us that he was taking a PAYCUT next season.. TROUBLE!! WE ARE IN TROUBLE!!! Example: We recruit Cam Newton as a tight end cause the staff can't see him playing QB in the S.E.C.. REALLY? So Cam is not a QB but our staff sees Richard Samuel as a S.E.C running back?! REALLY?? I REPEAT!! WE ARE IN TROUBLE!! CMR needs to transform into a new age coach and stop thinking its the 90s!! Bring back the white socks and white shoes and most importantly,GET THAT DAMN WATER GIRL OFF THE SIDELINES!!

Anonymous said...

We are so soft.. Example: That UCF player punches Slowshon aka "fat face" in his face and he does nothing!! SOFT!! I don't blame the recruits for not coming to UGA! You are who you hang with... I wouldn't wanna be hanging around suckas like Ealey.. Would you??? WE ARE IN TROUBLE!!! The GREAT ATHLETES of our wonderful state are leaving us people! We need a new image and some new blood! Bud Foster! Brian Van Gorder!

BuLLdawg said...

Mark Richt puts 11 men on the field, that's it.

Boise State – WIN
South Carolina – LOSS
Coastal Carolina – WIN
@ Ole Miss – WIN
Miss State – LOSS
@ vols – WIN
@ Vandie – WIN
Florida – LOSS
New Mexico – WIN
Auburn – LOSS
Kentucky – WIN
@ Georgia tek – WIN
SEC Championship Game – watch on TV - DNP
Crappy bowl game - WIN

14-game season, we will not play SEC Champ Game
13-game season, remaining
LOSSES – 4 – South Carolina Miss State Florida Auburn
WINS – 9 – Boise St CoastCar Ole Miss vols Vandie N Mex KY Ga tek bowl
9 – 4 in a 14-game season for the better teams
Good for # 32 in the nation in won/loss is what 9-4 is
Obviously, about # 7 in The SEC at 4-4 and 1 DID NOT PLAY SEC Champ
6 Consecutive Years in Row in succession not even play SEC Champ game

Anonymous said...

Just a quick correction. Houston was not the SEC sacks leader in 2010, Nick Fairley was with 10.5 sacks vs 10 for Houston.

Anonymous said...

Crowell is a joke. 9 carries for 22 yards last night. No blocking period no speed. UGA will be the joke of SEC again if this 185 lb jv back starts

Anonymous said...

How is STACY SEARELS not on this list??

Where's that o-line production? Probably up there with disappointments and he needs to be on the list!