Wednesday, January 2, 2008
Georgia 41, Hawaii 10
As my regular readers know, I am a Georgia Bulldog football fan. So, I was pulling for the Bulldogs 100% as they played the Hawaii Warriors in the Sugar Bowl on New Year's night.
Still, I regretted that Hawaii was not playing someone else because I would have been rooting for them against any other opponent. They provided a good story. They went 12-0 during the regular season and were thus the only undefeated major college team. They were led by the most prolific passer in the country, Colt Brennan, who according to media reports has turned his life around after some difficult times. They are coached by June Jones, whom I remember fondly as a backup quarterback and later head coach of the Atlanta Falcons.
Besides, the Warriors should have been playing someone else in the Sugar Bowl because the Dawgs should have been playing elsewhere. With due respect to the teams that are playing in the BCS Championship Game, when the dust settles, it is going to be hard to deny that the two best teams in the county at the end of the year were Southern Cal and Georgia with Oklahoma perhaps coming in right behind them. It is a shame that UGA and USC aren't playing for the national title. Failing that, it is a shame that they did not play in the Rose Bowl. That would have been best post-season matchup of all, I suspect.
But, the system is what the system is and when you get right down to it, Georgia has no one to blame but themselves. If they had beaten either South Carolina or Tennessee, they would have played in the SEC Championship Game and had they won that game they would have played in the national title game.
What matters today is that Georgia got the job done in outstanding fashion in the Sugar Bowl. Their balanced offense scored the most points ever scored by a Georgia team in a bowl game. The real story, though, was their defensive dominance. They sacked Brennan eight times, intercepted him three times, caused him to fumble twice, and harassed him all night long. And nine of the eleven defensive starters will be back next year. All in all, it was a find performance by the Bulldogs.
I do regret that the UGA fans chanted "Overrated" at the Hawaii team. The Warriors deserve a lot of respect for their accomplishments this year. Georgia fans should have enough class to be grateful for the effort put forth by their own team without attempting to degrade the opponent.
Now, I had predicted that SEC teams would go 9-0 in bowl games. It's not going to happen as their record is now 6-2 with LSU's likely win over Ohio State still to come. Florida lost a close one to Michigan which sent Lloyd Carr out on a winning note. Arkansas did not show up against Missouri.
Georgia's season is now over and the expecations for 2008 are already sky-high. It should be interesting.