Editor's Note Issue SEC Championship
by Vance Leavy
Well the time has finally arrived as our Bulldogs find themselves one victory away from earning a spot in the national championship game. Man, I don’t know about you, but I’m still digesting that what I have dreamed and wanted for decades is within four quarters of reality.
This is a great time for everyone in the Bulldog Nation, but the question now for all of us is whether our team, our coaches and fan base can avoid getting caught up in the emotion of the situation. Yes, the 2012 season has been special, but walking out of the Georgia Dome Saturday night with a victory is going to require playing flawless football in all phases.
And if you go by what’s being said in the national media and the odds makers in Las Vegas there’s very few that are even giving our Bulldogs a chance. And personally, I absolutely love that.
Once the Tech game was in hand this past Saturday, I was finally able to begin discussing my thoughts on whether Georgia could take down the mighty, Alabama Crimson Tide.
I most certainly think it can be done and believe one of the biggest reasons why is how last year’s SEC championship ended. Despite going toe to toe with LSU in the first half, our team was blown out of the building by game’s end. Call me crazy, but I think that terrible feeling from a year ago will have our boys in red and black vowing not to leave the Georgia Dome feeling empty again.
At the beginning of this season, our seniors came up with the motto “Our Team, Our Time, No Regrets.” And for 11 out of 12 games, they have lived up to their pledge. And for that, I join Knox Cleveland who is pictured on this page in saluting them for their awesome efforts this season. And now, I call on those guys to dig deeper than ever before when the ball is kicked off on Saturday.
Surely by now, everyone should know that a Nick Saban led football team means discipline. The question is whether our guys are ready to match the Crimson Tide in that department. Again, I like our chances because I’m absolutely convinced that this team will not be embarrassed in the Georgia Dome this time around.
Beyond playing with discipline as a team, it will take some outstanding individual efforts as well for a Georgia victory.
Despite breaking record after record while in Athens, Aaron Murray’s ability to play well in big games is still in question. Well, the stakes won’t get any bigger as the winner Saturday gets their shot at the crystal trophy in Miami in January. This is a great opportunity for #11 to finally get that monkey off his back. But personally, I think a solid performance by him will be more about what he doesn’t do, than what he does do. Without question, the stellar Alabama defense will be swarming our quarterback. And when this happens, will he live to play another down or will he be careless with the football?
On the other side of the ball, we in the Bulldog Nation need Jarvis Jones to have another blockbuster performance. Can you imagine what the Georgia Dome will sound like if he causes an early turnover? Kaboom… Kaboom!
Well I have to wrap things up now, but certainly hope you will enjoy this special extra SEC issue of BI. Jeff Dantzler did most of the writing for this one, despite being on the road with the Lady Bulldogs. And his computer was on the fritz, so he definitely deserves some accolades for digging deep for his love of the Dawgs. And please make sure you don’t miss Rob Sherrell’s one on one interview with D.J. Shockley (page 14). He was the perfect fit for this issue as he was the last Georgia quarterback to hoist the SEC Championship trophy in the Georgia Dome.
And finally, after a long layoff, our guys Gruff and Grump are back with a column (page 15) that will have you ready to pack your car and head to the dome immediately. G&G thinks we do in fact have more talent than Bama and are ready to shock the world Saturday night.
Let’s do this thing … Go Dawgs!