Or, how Bulldog Nation stopped worrying about a 60-yard touchdown on a blown coverage and learned to love Todd Grantham.
Everything about Georgia's opening Saturday has to include the caveat "...but it was Louisiana Lafayette," but even so, Georgia's shiny new 3-4 defense put forth a bravura performance. The D played a crisp, clean game for basically the full 60 minutes, holding ULL to just five first downs and 128 total yards, including only 14 net rushing yards. The Ragin' Cajuns would leave Sanford Stadium having crossed midfield only twice the entire afternoon -- once on a drive they started at their 47 after a long kickoff return, and the second time on this one-play "drive":
That was Lafayette's lone score and the Dawgs' one truly lousy play of the afternoon -- yet in a weird way, it got Georgia fans as amped up about their defense (jn a positive way) as they've been in a long, long time. As you'll see at about 1:45 in the above video, first-year D-coordinator Todd Grantham responded to the blown coverage by openly ripping his entire secondary a new one on the sidelines, and then just when it looked like he might have gotten over it, he found safety Bacarri Rambo and went back for seconds.
Sure, it's kind of silly to say "Ooh, our coach is awesome because he yells at people!", but think about it: Of all the times Georgia's pass defense got flambeed over the past few seasons, can you remember former coordinator Willie Martinez having that visceral a reaction to any of them? Or, heck, a reaction at all? If Grantham is still willing to get that prickly over sloppy play even on an afternoon when his Dawgs were otherwise grinding their opponent into powder (and helping the team to the largest margin of victory it's enjoyed since Mark Richt first came to UGA), then the mentality in Athens is clearly changing for the better. I think Bulldog Nation will take it.