If you're ranking the greatest inventions of all-time, Google Maps would certainly not outshine the Copper Still, Yeast, DVR or the Brasserie, but it's not too shabby. For bloggers looking to do a travel article about the toughest rough schedule in school history it's an irreplaceable tool.
Next year's UGA Football Schedule looks like this:
- vs Georgia Southern (Athens)
vs Central Michigan (Athens)
at South Carolina (Columbia)
at Arizona State (Tempe)
vs Alabama (Athens)
vs Tennessee (Athens)
vs Vanderbilt (Athens)
at LSU (Baton Rouge)
at Florida (Jacksonville "Home Team")
at Kentucky (Lexington)
at Auburn (Auburn)
vs Georgia Tech (home)
To quote my brother upon being confronted with these stats, "The earth only has a 24,901 mile circumference at the equator. When you factor in home games and a bowl game, I will travel 1/3 of the distance around the globe for football. That is hardcore. I'm fired up."
The mileage stats are obviously inflated by 3,827 mile swing to the desert that any right minded Georgia-based Dawg fan will be making via plane. The stats also don't include an SEC Championship Appearance (add 140 miles round trip from Athens) or a bowl trip to Miami (add 1,300 miles) or NOLA (add 900 miles). A trip to the SECC and National Title games would bring the total up to 8,806 miles.
The schedule's murderous section includes four consecutive SEC road games in Baton Rouge, Jacksonville, Lexington and Auburn. That's 3,164 miles in 23 days for the four game swing. Or 2,795 miles in 16 days for the LSU to UF to UK swing.
Any complaints about the four consecutive games away from Athens that the SEC stuck us with are appropriate. In a recent article, the AJC said that the ACC and SEC league offices work hard to "avoid putting a team on the road for two consecutive conference games." Apparently, four consecutive games is no biggie, but two is completely out of the question? Huh?
Those distances also don't include side trips a fan might make to places like New Orleans, St. Simons or The Grand Canyon. Mileage is strictly computed from 1 Selig Circle (the Butts-Mehre Building) to the opponent's stadium (which is visible in the maps below).
Check out this interactive map:
View Larger Map
If you play with the map, you can follow the complete travel route of the team. The map works better if you just go the big version here. If you want to adjust the map to change 1 Selig Circle to your home address, that's as simple as clicking on the "edit" buttons to the left of the larger map. But I digress.
If you're interested in shortening the time spent in the car, you could always pull the Dorsey Hill move. From Lewis Grizzard's column following the 1980 Cocktail Party:
God is a BulldogOl' Dorsey would definitely leave Baton Rouge headed straight for Jacksonville. That's a great way to shave 300 miles off your journey!
Jacksonville, Fla. - Dorsey Hill, the world's biggest Bulldog fan, left here Sunday afternoon, bound for Auburn, Ala., where Georgia's undefeated football team next appears.
"I don't think you can get from Jacksonville to Auburn," I had said to him.
"You can change buses in Waycross and Columbus," Dorsey answered.
"You aren't going home first?"
"Home?" He screamed back. "I haven't worked since Texas A&M, and I haven't slept since Clemson. You expect me to go back home when we play Auburn in only six more days?"
Over the coming weeks and months, we'll try and offer some travel suggestions for the Arizona State game. In the meantime, I'll say this...if you're planning on using frequent flyer miles to get out there then:
- A. I hope you're not with Delta or don't mind a layover.
B. Are flying from or through a city other than Atlanta.
There will probably be some grumbling about the travel distance and expense from Dawg fans this season...particularly the ASU trip. My response to that: We haven't left the Southeast since we beat Michigan in Ann Arbor in 1965. The Athletic Department gave us a few years to save up. lol. (Image: Sun Devil Stadium)
In all seriousness, most every hardcore Dawg fan that I know is planning on going to this game. I can't imagine what the demand for tickets will be, but it wouldn't shock me to see us take at least 10,000 to Tempe. I personally know more people who are at least tentatively planning on going to Tempe than Jacksonville.
I'm looking forward to this season with more anticipation than any I can remember. Although, I'm not looking forward to dozens and dozens of articles mentioning the 1965-2008 streak without leaving the South. But you gotta take the good with the bad.
After an '08 trip to Tempe, '09 trip to Stillwater, '10 trip to Boulder and '11 trip to Louisville, we should never have to listen to that again.
-- Who Travels and Who Doesn't - The Wizard of Odds
-- Future and Historical UGA Schedules - Sicemdawgs.com
NOTE: If you're a Phoenix or Tempe based travel agent with expertise in Tempe/Grand Canyon type programs. Give me a shout. I'll interview you and give you a plug. I'd like to recommend sites and destinations for Dawgs coming in early.