Good day, UGA. Welcome to your one-stop shop for all the relevant UGA football news and takes every Monday through Friday morning. Today, we temporarily quit moonlighting as amateur meteorologists and talk about some football.
Two QBs means no QBs
I’ve been so caught up in Hurricane Matthew news this week that I’ve somewhat neglected thinking about what’s gonna happen on the field. Let’s remedy that now, shall we?
The most interesting thing about South Carolina heading into this game, to me, is Will Muschamp’s plan to play two quarterbacks against the Bulldogs. Both freshman Brandon McIlwain and senior Perry Orth have started games this season, but neither has played well enough to beat out the other for the starting role.
“(McIlwain and Orth) are a little different in their skill sets,” Muschamp said, according to SEC Country. “We need to make Georgia work on that a little bit, too.”
From his comments, Muschamp seems confident that two signal callers will keep the UGA defense on its toes. But it seems to me like a case of him trying to spin a negative as a positive. Playing two quarterbacks is usually a sign that you have two players who aren’t good enough for the job, instead of having two guys who are too good not to play. In fact, the only time I can think of a two-QB system really and truly working was Chris Leak and Tim Tebow at Florida in 2006. Even then, it was apparent that Leak was No. 1 and Tebow was just there to inject his unique style into the game.
Needless to say, Orth and McIlwain are no Leak and Tebow. Orth started the first two games of the season and has thrown for 373 yards on 57 percent passing and no touchdowns so far. McIlwain started the last three games and threw for 567 yards on 53 percent passing to go along with 2 passing touchdowns and 2 rushing touchdowns. So, it seems like McIlwain should the be the clear starter, and that might’ve been the case had he performed well in last week’s loss to Texas A&M.
But McIlwain didn’t play well. He completed 9 passes for just 34 yards and threw an interception. Muschamp eventually yanked him, bringing Orth in for relief. The senior promptly created a quarterback controversy by going 11 of 18 for 138 yards in limited action. So, now it’s a big mess.
Despite how Muschamp tries to spin it, this is a very good thing for Georgia. If a team has two quarterbacks, it really has no quarterbacks. The defense will have to adjust slightly when McIlwain is on the field because he’s a threat to run, but just barely so far. (He’s only averaging 1.9 yards per carry.) Neither has thrown for more than 200 yards in a game this season, so the defense doesn’t have much to worry about, regardless of who’s playing. In fact, after playing Chad Kelly and Josh Dobbs the last two weeks, this matchup kinda seems like a godsend.
- Kirby Smart on calling out his players when necessary: “Honesty is the best policy.”
- Get more of the lowdown on what to expect in the South Carolina game from SEC Country’s Mike Wilson.
- Chip Towers has some more talking points for you ahead of the game this weekend.
- Towers and Seth Emerson discuss a wide array of topics, including UGA’s chances of winning out, on this week’s Zaxby’s Zound-Off.
- Jeff Sentell counted down the top five remaining targets on UGA’s recruiting board.
- Georgia players talk about their experiences with former Georgia/current South Carolina assistant coach Bryan McClendon.
- Jacob Eason is in a position to break all kinds of UGA freshman quarterback records.
On Wednesday, we speculated about where the game on Saturday will be played if not in Columbia, and that’s now all for naught. The game will be played in Columbia.
— Gamecock Athletics (@GamecocksOnline) October 5, 2016
When the game will be played is still in question, though. The most recent forecasts show Florida receiving the brunt of Hurricane Matthew before it turns east into the Atlantic. Though it still seems like coastal South Carolina will still receive rain, and lots of it. Columbia is also likely to get drenched. Because of this, USC associate AD Charles Bloom told WNKT, USC’s flagship radio station, that playing on Sunday or even Monday isn’t out of the question.
“If you can’t play it on Saturday night, I think that definitely has the potential of happening,” he said, according to The State.
At least part of this conundrum is solved now, but there’s still a lot to figure out. Stay tuned to DawgNation for the latest news on when the game will be played.
On Twitter, Amelia Parrish had a good suggestion for any Georgia fans who are on the fence about traveling to Columbia.
— Amelia Parrish (@abparrish083) October 5, 2016
The coast is being evacuated and Columbia is the closest major city, so no surprise it’s full of people trying to escape the storm. By not attending, Georgia fans can help those who evacuated access more lodgings and keep traffic congestion down in nasty weather conditions. Wouldn’t you rather be dry and watch on TV rather than sitting out in the rain anyway?
Winner winner chicken dinner
UGA women’s golf team won the Windy City Collegiate Classic for the second year in a row. It shot a 10-under 854 as a team to beat Stanford by four strokes.
“This victory is a big statement early in the year for us on where we are and how we can compete on a national level,” head coach Josh Brewer said.
Best former nicknames in college football
Oregon has the tall task of stopping the Washington Huskies this weekend. (By that, I mean Oregon is hopelessly doomed to defeat at the hands of the Washington Huskies this weekend.) But maybe the Ducks will be inspired by the historical twist in this week’s edition of their countless alternate uniforms.
— ESPN CollegeFootball (@ESPNCFB) October 3, 2016
Typically I’m not a fan of Oregon’s alternate uniforms, but the combination between the name “Webfoots” and the Oregon flag on the helmet make these pretty sweet. I didn’t know this, but apparently Webfoots was the first nickname for Oregon sports. For those interested, a webfoot doesn’t refer to a duck, but rather it was a pejorative for people who worked in wet conditions — as many did in the Willamette Valley in the late 19th century — used ironically by Oregon fans.
This got me thinking about other schools’ former nicknames. Lots of people think Georgia used to be the Goats, but I don’t believe that was ever the actual nickname. It was only used a bit because someone brought a goat mascot to the first UGA football game. (If I’m getting my history wrong, please let me know in the comments.) Regardless, I decided to rank a few of the best former nicknames in college football.
- Washington Sun Dodgers — From 1919-22, Washington was known as the Sun Dodgers. It always rains in Seattle. Get it? The name was changed to the Huskies after mounting pressure from angry Seattleites.
- Akron Zippers — Akron became the Zippers in the 1920s, but changed it to the Zips in the ’70s. Zipper became synonymous with the thing used to fasten your pants, and nobody wanted their team named after something so closely associated with crotches.
- Ole Miss Flood — Ole Miss changed from the Flood to the Rebels in 1935 in an attempt to be sensitive to those affected by flooding in Mississippi. Nice try, Ole Miss, but you replaced it with a nickname associated with the Confederacy. So, a big swing and a miss there.
- Memphis Teachers — Technically, it was the West Tennessee State Teachers College Teachers, before changing to the Tigers in 1939. The school kept the nickname in its transitions to Memphis State College and eventually the University of Memphis.
- Georgia Southern Blue Tide — From 1924-41, Southern was the Blue Tide. I wish it would’ve kept it just so Alabama didn’t have a monopoly on tide-based nicknames.
UGA Basketball: A New Hope
Georgia men’s basketball is only 68 season tickets away from breaking its record for most season tickets sold for a season. It seems fans are buying into this year’s squad and preparing to turn up at Stegeman Coliseum in a big way. And more home support will only help the team as it has big tests in Athens against Kentucky and Texas, just to name a few home opponents.
The current record is from the 2002-03 season, Jim Harrick’s final season in charge of the Bulldogs. That team finished 19-8 overall, 11-5 in the SEC. Not a bad record by any means. But that season ended in controversy over the sham basketball course taught by Harrick’s son, assistant Jim Harrick Jr. (See if you could’ve passed the final!) Let’s hope that isn’t an omen of things to come this year.
Volleyball match back on
The volleyball match between UGA and USC that was supposed to be played this weekend in Columbia has been rescheduled for Friday at 7 p.m. in Athens. Because of the change, UGA will now plays its scheduled home game against USC in Columbia instead of Athens on Nov. 6.
Over the hump
This week’s almost over, and I’m already looking ahead to Saturday like …