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WATCH: Georgia-Clemson opener only adds to ‘now or never’ narrative

SystemSystem Posts: 4,306 admin
edited May 5 in General
imageWATCH: Georgia-Clemson opener only adds to ‘now or never’ narrative

Georgia opens the season against Clemson in Charlotte. It figures to be one of the most anticipated games of the season. And the result of that game will go a long way in shaping the "now or never" narrative that has developed around the program.

Read the full story here



  • reddawg1reddawg1 Posts: 1,440 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    Make no mistake the Clemson game is a test as to where the UGA program is at. Win and everyone becomes believers, lose and the media assessment is we're just not there yet. It would be hard to argue otherwise.

    At some point we have to make that leap from the almost there/knocking on the door/ outside looking in to being an insider. Clemson lost their starting QB. Imagine the nay- sayers against UGA if Lawrence was returning. Imagine some UGA fans perspective if that were so. No way they'd think we could win.

    I mean from the mouth of some it would seem like it's just a toss up between UGA and Clemson even with their 2nd year guy who has started what 1 or 2 games?

    In the mind of some on here we're just not there yet. Why not? We're starting a QB who projects to go in the 1st round in the Draft next year and yet doubt remains.

    Question for all: Is this just a carry over from the Richt days or is this where Kirby has brought the fans all by himself(just can't quite get over the hump) or we just don't have the talent to beat a Clemson or a BAMA? What is it fans? Coaching? Kirby or the players? Or is it just some people's lack of faith in the program and you don't want to get your hearts broken(you think) by believing we should march our way all the way to the NC Trophy next January?

    Go DAWGS!

  • Dawg365Dawg365 Posts: 1,109 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    Narratives are opinions, often based on limited information, emotion and agendas. If UGA loses to Clemson and gets additional motivation by starting the season with a losing record BUT later wins the Natty, give me a big fat L! If we start off with the W, get big heads and are less motivated-then I pray Clemson has the day. However, I would love to experience the elusive undefeated season and watch the Dawgs be world beaters. Anything is possible, but my money is on the W in September; after that, I choose to make no further predictions until I have seen this team play.

    Get it done in 21!

  • BillyDawg1BillyDawg1 Posts: 2,263 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    Saban only has 2 undefeated seasons, clearly we could lose to The tegers and still win a title by winning out.

    That being true, as Kirby has said, elite recruiting puts pressure on him to win it all. The longer he doesn't win those critical few games the louder questions will get.

    To date the best team Kirby has fielded had mostly Richt hold overs in key positions. In fact every key position except QB and LT was manned by Richt recruits. Is it bad luck, or some combination of game day coaching, game preparations and player development ?

    ESPN clearly danced around the question of how our secondary was coached last season during their draft coverage. We probably had the most physically gifted group of DBs in program history in 2020, all the key players had experience, yet statistically our pass defense was in the lower 50% in CFB.

    Lecounte being injured shouldn't have been a big issue given our recruiting, so I don't consider it a valid excuse. I think Kirby needs to stop spending time coaching QBs, something he has far more qualified people for and get back to coaching defense with a heavy lean towards the secondary. I'm also hopeful we have a better secondary coach now, fingers crossed.

  • UGA66UGA66 Posts: 2,531 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    No matter who Clemson fields as a team, they will be prepared and come at the Dawgs hard and fast from the get-go. That is their MO. Yes, they are vulnerable at QB, also without Etienne and several WRs. UGA is without Pickens. It will be a royal battle. I believe UGA has the edge....and will emerge victorious. JT will have a proverbial "field day." If coached up...UGA's enormous pool of talent should prevail. I, for one, am very encouraged. GO DAWGS!!!

  • kirkhilleskirkhilles Posts: 615 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    I would hardly call a loss to Clemson a season-ending event. Frustrating? Sure. Disappointing? Yeah, but not the end. We NEED to get to the SEC Championship game and a loss doesn't affect that. Winning the SEC gets us to the playoffs presuming we don't stumble along the way.

    In the end, it always comes down to Bama.

  • BillyDawg1BillyDawg1 Posts: 2,263 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    Kirby's situation is different from most coaches with his HC experience because he's recruiting with the notion of winning national titles.

    If he doesn't at least come very close soon recruiting will tail off and his job will only get tougher. That is what happens when a coach jumps straight into the fire.

  • rhclaghornrhclaghorn Posts: 102 ✭✭✭ Junior

    I would say we need to beat either Clemson - OR - win the SEC championship to have a shot at the playoffs this season. An undefeated regular season with a victory over a top ranked Clemson team could be enough to make the dance even without getting over the Bama hump. Perhaps beating Clemson is the more likely of the two paths, so the game is a pretty big deal in my mind.

  • E_RocE_Roc Posts: 644 ✭✭✭✭ Senior
    edited May 5

    I've never understood the "he did it with the last guy's players" argument. Yes, Richt had all those guys, and did nothing with them. Smart led them to an SEC championship and to within a blown coverage of a national championship. So we get a side-by-side comparison showing the results of effective coaching, and somehow it's a mark against the guy who provided it?

  • BillyDawg1BillyDawg1 Posts: 2,263 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    I think it's valid and fair to point out all of those players who took us closer to a national title than we'd been since Jan 1 1981 were identified and signed by Richt's staff. Brown was a superb judge of RB talent and as a DC Pruitt was as good as anybody at recognizing and developing talent. If it's not relevant, why hasn't Kirby got back to where we were in the 2017 season ? he has the best average recruiting in CFB over the past 5 years.

    Of course offense has been our biggest issue, we should be better but I'd sure love to have Pickens and 3 backs like Chubb, Michel and Swift this season.

  • E_RocE_Roc Posts: 644 ✭✭✭✭ Senior
    edited May 6

    You imply that Smart and his staff are deficient in evaluating talent, while also pointing to the amount of talent he's brought in and had to work with as a reason to doubt his coaching ability. Which is it?

    The fact remains that that previous staff, for all its ostensible prowess, was taking the program nowhere, and you're using Smart's success where the previous coach failed as a basis for doubting him. It still seems to me like backwards reasoning.

    As for the question as to why Smart has gone 3 whole seasons without getting back to the national championship, maybe that's because it's difficult and he's not yet at such an elite level that getting there every year is a reasonable expectation. That seems to me like a much more sensible explanation. I'm not denying that having guys like Chubb and Michel as seniors goes a long way toward making a championship run. But that's generally true regardless of which coach signed them, and going as far as to subtract credit from Smart's achievement in getting the most out of the team that included those guys simply because they arrived before he did is quite a stretch.

  • E_RocE_Roc Posts: 644 ✭✭✭✭ Senior
    edited May 6

    Just to be clear, I'm not pursuing this argument out of any sense of devotion to Smart. The rationale you're presenting has been around for as long as I can remember, and I've never been on board with it. That includes when people would say it about Richt using Donnan's players. It's about giving the coach who actually produced the result the credit for it. I just don't see how you can suggest that a coach who produced enough underwhelming results to get fired is mostly responsible for an increase in success that is achieved after he is no longer involved in the program. It simply makes no sense.

  • donmedeirosdonmedeiros Posts: 2,352 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    Agree. It's like if I bought 2 days of great groceries and cooked some of them that same day. Ughh, if you know anything about my cooking. Then a 4* chef comes in and cooks the groceries I bought and the meal is delicious.. Should I get the credit?

  • reddawg1reddawg1 Posts: 1,440 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    Coach Richt and Kirby both had 52 wins in their 1st 5 seasons. Coach Richt had 49 wins his last 5 seasons at UGA. He wasn't fired for being an underwhelming coach, unless you figure winning 10 games a year a bad thing. He was fired because he could never get us to the Natty.

    By the same token the way some judge CMR, Kirby may one day be viewed as underwhelming considering his prowess at recruiting classes. Just say'n. To whom much is given, much is expected.

    I believe in Kirby, just like I did CMR, until he proves otherwise. But honestly, so far, other than great recruiting, he hasn't been any better at coaching them up than CMR was his first 5 seasons. I believe it could be argued that CMR did more with less talented players his first 5 seasons recruiting wise seeing how Florida , Tennessee, Auburn and South Carolina all had more competitive teams than they have been during Kirby's time so far..

  • ultimatedawgultimatedawg Posts: 427 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate
  • BillyDawg1BillyDawg1 Posts: 2,263 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    We're typing in circles. It's not about not giving Kirby credit for 2017, it's about what he's done and not done with the top classes he's recruited. There will always be fans who knee jerk defend and knee jerk criticize, I don't think I'm doing either, I think I'm stating facts and being open minded about Kirby's tenure so far.

    I'm very optimistic where the program is headed, but I'm I as confident Kirby will win titles as I was at the end of the 2017 season ? no I'm not.

  • emanresuemanresu Posts: 1,676 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    Kirby will be at Georgia minimum 20 years and will win at least 3 National Championships or as many as 5. He's already had Alabama steal 1 from under his nose and cost himself a chance at another 1 when he failed to tailor his Offense around Justin Fields and went with the safer but limited Jake Fromm and I don't think he'll make that mistake again. Again the jury is still out but I see Kirby as the modern games Bobby Bowden with the way he recruits and he'll fall into 3 National Championships at Georgia before he's done.

  • donmedeirosdonmedeiros Posts: 2,352 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    "fall into" doesn't suggest you think very highly of him as a coach - almost as if they'll win several NC's in spite of him. No one is that lucky...if they do win several natty's. to whom would you give the credit?

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