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September 16, 2010

Fran Tarkenton on the Dawgs

Before the ULL game, Georgia legend and former co-host of That's Incredible, Fran Tarkenton was asked on his Atlanta radio show about the 2010 Bulldogs. He's always very candid and this time was no exception. When he was asked about Grantham, he laughed and said (paraphrase):

"Fans love it when a new coach comes in and promises that the players will suddenly tackle better and run faster. Remember, the 3-4 defense is not a magic elixir. It's been around since the early 1970s. At the end of the day, you still have to make plays."

Basically, he was insinuating that our optimism as fans preseason was overblown. Upon further reflection after Saturday's game, Tarkenton's comments about the defense seem even more valid because (not to put words into his mouth) you can't talk your way to victory. You have to go out and make plays.

He went on to say (and remember this is all pre-ULL) that UGA has too much talent to go worse than 8-4. If the defense does evolve and Murray emerges, we could win 9 or 10 games. As I said yesterday, I absolutely believe that he was correct there.

However, this team with this many kids who struggle with motivation can't start at 0-2 in the SEC heading into Starkville. Mullen might be the most overrated coach in the league right now, but that team still has hope. And when hope and enthusiasm faces self pity and disinterest, hope often overcomes its talent.

We need a win in the worst way on Saturday.



John said...

I know I'll catch all grades of abuse for saying this, but it sure seems like this season has started badly and is going downhill fast.

First we had all the off-field incidents during the spring and summer (including Damon and the dismissal of our starting qb), then the AJ Green situation (which is still not resolved and seems to have the potential to actually get worse), the poor play of the offensive line, the loss to SC, Mike Bobo seemingly forgetting three-fourths of the playbook, Chapas gets hurt and now B. Smith suffers a concussion in PRACTICE. I mean seriously, it just keeps getting worse. Things are not good.

I know most people seem to think everything is hunky-dory and all this stuff is going to magically fix itself. I hope that happens. I really do.

Irwin R. Flecther said...

I think Fran's quotes ring pretty true after the game.

Maybe I'm losing my mind, but I wasn't shooting myself over the defense on Saturday. What I couldn't figure out was how we could have so many 3 and outs after the Defense would get stops. It's like the offense isn't ready to go unless we see a kickoff.

That's the scary part to me that is similar to last season...the games where the defense played relatively well (LSU, Okie State, Arizona State)...we would get into the ruts on offense of going 3 and out at key points where we could shift or take control of momentum. I'm just crossing my fingers and hoping that Bobo doesn't need to feel that he 'has to win a shootout' in order to make the types of play calls that get the offense moving. I can't remember the last time we played a game where the game was tight thanks to the defense and we played aggressive on offense. Its like it takes us getting down points or trading quick scores to get us going.

AthensHomerDawg said...

Now Fran is relevant? Maybe if I wanted to avoid an SEC investigation into a software company...but who cares what Francis thinks?

AwesomeDawg said...

AthensHomerDawg...Why would we not take Fran's word? He appears to know football. And given his quotes, looks like he is spot on to this point in the season. The Dawgs still have tackling issues, even with Willie gone. Do the Dawgs have talent to win 10 games? I do not think so, but I take Frans opinion as more of an expert than my own observations. That being said, I see this team having a ceiling of 8 wins, not 10. I am not positive that the offense (players + CMB + CMR) is capable of winning Saturday vs the Hogs.

Carter Burger said...

Hey AthensHomerDawg, have you played for the Dawgs? No? Have you taken an NFL team to the Super Bowl? No? Well Tarkenton has and not to mention being selected for the Pro Bowl 9 times, a two time All-Pro team selection, NFL MVP, NFL Offensive player of the year and has his jersey number retired by Minnesota. I'm sure he's forgotten more about football that the rest of us will ever know. His resume speaks for itself when discussing the game.

I hate like hell that our season depends on beating a team like Arkansas, but in reality, it does. If they play the Hogs like they played the 'Cocks, the Dawgs are looking at another Bubba & Earl's Bait Shop Bowl appearance. And in reality, after seeing how they played USC last week, I'll be surprised if they do...and will be glad my wedding day is on the UGA/FLA gameday so I won't have to watch the massacre that's coming on the 30th.

Anonymous said...

Poor tackling was a huge issue for Grantham when he was in Cleveland. Go back and look at some of those Browns games. It was terrible.

Joe said...

not everyone was overly optimistic..

you were very cautious during the offseason.

btw great work on the blog so far during the season..

Carter said...

Fran has been on Fox Sports Radio a few times and offered more pointed criticism of Brett Favre than anyone else I've heard in the mainstream media. And he has a lovely head of hair. Kudos on both of those!

Glad to have you "back", Paul. Hopefully your ladyfriend and your career will allow you to post regularly. You are the OG UGA blogger, after all.

Anonymous said...

Fran who? How many Super Bowls did Tarkenton win? Let's see......

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