Junkyard Blawg 

Lifelong Bulldog Bill King offers a fan's perspective on UGA sports

It’s a Dawg’s world, whether you’re in London or Hoover

  • 10:58 am Friday, July 18th, 2014 by Bill King
Mark Richt was unusually confident meeting the media in Hoover. (Associated Press)

A week ago today, my wife and daughter and I were standing in line outside 221B Baker Street on a cool, rainy London morning, waiting for the Sherlock Holmes Museum to open, when the couple standing in front of us turned around.

Apparently noticing the G on my baseball cap and my daughter’s red sweatshirt, the woman asked, “Where are y’all from?”

“Atlanta,” I replied, and she smiled. “We’re from Augusta. Go Dogs!”

Turned out they were also parents of a UGA grad and were over early for the British Open.

I don’t know what the odds are of us queuing up right [More]

UGA vs. Notre Dame? Check. Now, bring on Texas!

  • 3:07 pm Saturday, June 28th, 2014 by Bill King
Gerogia Texas Helmets

With the long-rumored Georgia-Notre Dame home-and-home football scheduling deal finally a reality this week, a lot of UGA supporters are already planning on trying to be among the 8,000 Bulldog fans who’ll get tickets to the Sept. 9, 2017, game in South Bend.

With the two schools only having played once before (and that resulting in a national championship for the Bulldogs), a regular season pairing of Georgia and Notre Dame is a dream matchup.

And while it’s true such big-time scheduling deals offer enough complications (mainly loss of one home game) that you’re not likely to see them on an every-season [More]

World Cup stirs memories of when the Dawgs were fit to be tied

  • 10:55 am Wednesday, June 25th, 2014 by Bill King
Making or averting ties played a big part in Kevin Butler's UGA career. (UGA)

Long extinct in college football and most other sports played in this country, the triumph and tragedy of a tie score in a big game has reared its head again thanks to the quadrennial return of soccer’s World Cup tournament to our TV screens.

Other sports may want no part of it, but the tie is still honored in soccer. In fact, a win or a tie against Germany will be good enough for the U.S. to move on to the second round of the World Cup.

But thanks to Portugal’s stoppage time goal forcing the U.S. into a draw this past [More]

Junkyard Mail: Changes Between the Hedges, Bobo’s offense, Georgia-Florida and more!

  • 12:29 pm Saturday, June 21st, 2014 by Bill King

The players are working out in Athens, but otherwise we’re in college football’s summer downtime. Come mid-July, however, the first harbingers of a new season will arrive, including SEC Media Days July 14-17 (UGA takes the spotlight on the last day), and the annual Countdown to Kickoff, organized by Bulldog greats Jon and Matt Stinchcomb and David Greene, which is set for noon to 3 p.m. July 19.

This year, the fan festival will move from its longtime home at the Woodruff Practice Fields to inside Sanford Stadium, which will give the many kids who attend the chance to run around [More]

UGA ticket demand up in SEC’s ‘most beautiful’ stadium

  • 11:05 am Wednesday, June 18th, 2014 by Bill King

An off year in 2013 with a disappointing 8-5 record doesn’t seem to have dampened demand for UGA football season tickets.

Maybe it’s because the economy is in better shape, but the athletic association reported Tuesday that the Hartman Fund/Bulldog Club cumulative priority point cutoff score for 2014 is actually up from last year, when any contributor giving the $250 minimum donation per seat got tickets. This year, that’s not the case. Hartman Fund contributors requesting additional/new pairs of renewable season tickets with a cumulative score less than 1,001 won’t get them. (A limited number of nonrenewable single season tickets [More]

Junkyard Mail: Bulldogs fans’ 2014 football expectations mostly optimistic

  • 12:09 pm Saturday, June 14th, 2014 by Bill King
John Theus, Todd Gurley and Hutson Mason are all key components in the Georgia offense's 2014 prospects. (John Kelley / UGA)

This week saw 11 members of Mark Richt’s 2014 Georgia football team named to the Athlon Sports Preseason All-SEC Team: Tailback Todd Gurley, inside linebacker Ramik Wilson and placekicker Marshall Morgan were named to the first team, while flanker Malcolm Mitchell, center David Andrews and outside linebackers Leonard Floyd and Jordan Jenkins were second-team picks. Tackle John Theus and cornerback Damian Swann were picked for the third team, and defensive end Ray Drew and inside linebacker Amarlo Herrera were named to the fourth team. Gurley, Wilson and Floyd also were named to Phil Steele’s Preseason All-America Team this week.

Meanwhile, [More]

Too many tailbacks never a problem in the SEC

  • 11:26 am Thursday, June 12th, 2014 by Bill King

“What’s Georgia gonna do with all those tailbacks?”

That’s what a guy getting on the elevator the other day wanted to know, and I must say I was kind of relieved to have someone talking to me about Bulldog running backs rather than Tray Matthews and the troubled secondary.

If all Mark Richt and Mike Bobo had returning was the “Don’t call us Gurshall” duo of Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall, they’d be in excellent shape, barring a return of last year’s injury bug. But the tailback corps in Athens also includes sophomore Brendan Douglas, who did solid if not exactly game-breaker [More]

Matthews dismissal shows Mark Richt’s challenge: Balancing need for talent, desire for discipline (UPDATED)

  • 10:59 am Wednesday, June 4th, 2014 by Bill King

There are no clear-cut answers to Georgia’s continuing attrition problem, as Tray Matthews’ dismissal marks the latest departure from Mark Richt’s team.

In the short term, the Dogs still have a loaded, talented offense and the defense looks to be strong up front, but I expect every opponent on the 2014 schedule to test the depleted secondary by throwing long and often.

Mostly due to his inability to come back from a nagging hamstring issue, Matthews never became the dominant defender he’d shown flashes of in his first spring in Athens and, in fact, lost his starting safety job late in the [More]

Is opener against Clemson the home game Dawg fans are most excited about?

  • 11:38 am Saturday, May 31st, 2014 by Bill King

Friday’s announcement that Georgia and Clemson will kick off in Athens at 5:30 p.m. Aug. 30 with ESPN televising the game nationally means the Tigers and Bulldogs won’t have a second consecutive clash in prime time, but that’s not really surprising since this year’s game most likely won’t pit two Top 10 teams or a pair of Heisman-potential quarterbacks like last year’s did.

Still, it’s going to be one of the marquee events of college football’s opening weekend.

Mindful of how hot and muggy Athens usually is in late August, UGA fans are thankful that the unusual kickoff time means at least [More]

UGA’s game day experience: Loud music and cupcakes, but no beer

  • 11:11 am Thursday, May 29th, 2014 by Bill King

Athletic Director Greg McGarity talked some more about efforts to upgrade the game day experience at Sanford Stadium this week while attending the SEC’s spring meetings in Destin, Fla.

UGA already had announced that cellphone use inside the stadium should be much enhanced this fall. And, since the conference is loosening up rules on when recorded music and artificial sound can be played during games — letting schools crank up the P.A. between plays until the center is over the football — Georgia is enthusiastically scrambling aboard that bandwagon after experiencing what that sort of game environment is like last year [More]