Junkyard Blawg 

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

Georgia-Clemson: It doesn’t get any better!

  • 11:28 am Friday, August 29th, 2014 by Bill King
The play of John Theus and Georgia's offensive line will be a key to a win over Clemson. (Jason Getz / AJC)

“Are you ready for the new season?”

“Dawgs gonna do it against Clemson?’

Those are the typical greetings I’ve been getting around the office the past week or so, and the answsers are:

“Definitely” and “I think so.”

I hedge on the second because, like all Georgia fans, I’m wondering just how much better a largely inexperienced Bulldogs secondary will be with Jeremy Pruitt, late of national champion FSU, at the helm in place of the departed Todd Grantham.

My answer to a friend on that question yesterday: Well, at least they should all be on the same page of the playbook, which in itself [More]

Preseason concerns about Dawgs shift as injuries mount

  • 11:35 am Wednesday, August 13th, 2014 by Bill King

As Mark Richt’s Bulldogs approach the midway point in preseason practices, I decided to take stock of what parts of Georgia’s team have this fan feeling pretty good and what areas have me somewhat concerned.

The concerns actually have shifted a bit from before practice started. Yeah, I’m still taking a wait-and-see attitude on Jeremy Pruitt’s rebuilding project in the secondary as well as the reshuffling of the offensive line. And those still could prove to be the major points on which the Dogs’ early part of the season turns.

But as injuries have mounted and lingered, I’ve become more concerned about [More]

August in Athens: ‘Red and Black Christmas’!

  • 11:05 am Thursday, August 7th, 2014 by Bill King
The UGA Bookstore has a Georgia-Clemson game T-shirt. (Olivia King / special)

Ah, Athens in August.

With school not yet in session and no classes to schedule around, Mark Richt and his staff have been moving right along with preseason camp, including starting two-a-days. And that’s meant …. Isaiah McKenzie turning heads with his open-field moves … Richt providing a little Dawg porn when he has the team run quick three-on-three Oklahoma drills with the media (and their camera phones) watching while Todd Gurley goes airborne (in practice!) … the daily media injury watch to see who limped off the field, who’s in what color jersey, who didn’t dress out and whether Hutson [More]

Junkyard Mail: How much should 2014 Dawgs rely on the run?

  • 12:49 pm Saturday, August 2nd, 2014 by Bill King
Hutson Mason opens fall practice under the watchful eye of Mike Bobo. (Brant Sanderlin / AJC)

It’s officially football season, now that Mark Richt’s Bulldogs have started preseason camp, so let’s see what’s on the minds of fans in some of this week’s Junkyard Mail. …

Jimmy Howard writes: Bill, I know all about the benefits of a balanced offense, and Mike Bobo has shown in recent seasons that he understands well how a strong running game sets up a strong passing game. But with Todd Gurley, Keith Marshall, Brendan Douglas and elite newcomers Nick Chubb and Sony Michel at tailback, plus a changeover at quarterback, do you think maybe Georgia will (or should) rely on the [More]

Bulldog Nation confidence check: All over the place

  • 11:17 am Thursday, July 31st, 2014 by Bill King
UGA offensive coordinator Mike Bobo. (John Kelley / UGA)

The level of confidence on the part of fans as Mark Richt’s Georgia Bulldogs report for preseason camp today varies greatly.

There are those who think a healthy offense loaded at tailback and receiver will be unstoppable despite a change in quarterbacks, and that the defense can’t help but be better than last year, meaning another trip to the Dome in December.

At the other extreme are the worriers who lament the unsettled offensive line, all the personnel losses from an already suspect secondary, the departure of Aaron Murray and the Dogs’ spotty history in special teams. A lot of those folks [More]

Junkyard Mail: Getting Dogs’ secondary on track, Clemson game, honoring Dooley and more!

  • 11:59 am Saturday, July 26th, 2014 by Bill King
Can Jeremy Pruitt turn the Dogs' dysfunctional secondary around in one season? (University of Georgia)

Bulldogs reserve linebacker Davin Bellamy, a redshirt freshman, was arrested early Saturday morning on charges of DUI and speeding, which means Jordan Jenkins may not get quite as much relief as expected at outside linebacker during the Clemson and South Carolina games.

So, yet another off-season arrest for Mark Richt’s team, and I’m not sure what’s left to say about that other than I’ve given up trying to figure out why so many college players these days keep doing dumb things that they know are going to cost them playing time.

Anyway, let’s dive into some Junkyard Mail. …

Andrew in Charleston, [More]

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]

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]

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]