All of us have looked at 2011 and scratched our heads. On one hand, the schedule sets up very nicely for the Dawgs to have a season that should be much better than last year's bucket of fail. On the other, we could start out 0-2 and no number of two touchdown wins will turn some people around. I can't think of a season since 2000 that I have looked at and thought we could be anywhere from 11-1 to 5-7, and I wouldn't be surprised at any of those outcomes.
I'll get to the Boise State and South Carolina games later. On paper, we should head into Florida no worse than 5-2. I know there are those out there that think we'll lose to Mississippi State or Ole Miss, but the Rebel Bears are worse than last season and Mississippi State needed the least inspired performance (until the bowl game) out of a Georgia team since the debacle in Knoxville in 07 to win. Not to mention, State lost their Dcoordinator, three of their starting linebackers and that monster in the middle of the line that kept Georgia from doing anything on the ground.
Tennessee legitimately worries me. That isn't to say I think we'll lose to them, but they have a ton of upside potential. They also still have a younger squad than Georgia Military. That and as good (or bad) as Bray might be, he has fewer weapons than Murray. And he isn't Murray.
So we go into Florida at 5-2. Putting aside Florida, who on the back end of the schedule worries you? Auburn? Kentucky? I mean this is the SEC, but we could be a legit 9-3, either way.
I realize this is a very quick whip around the schedule, but it isn't hard to see a world that 9-3 is the very worst we could finish. Would that be enough? If one of the nine is Boise State, does that change things? How about Florida? South Carolina?
I don't say this will be dispositive. I realize we have to show up to win, but the schedule is one that a coach under pressure to put up wins has to love. Can the renewed...whatever it is...pay off?