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While Georgia was locked in mortal combat with Vanderbilt (and its coaches), I was watching white people attempt to do the electric slide in a hotel ballroom -- and I couldn't be more grateful.
Georgia coach Mark Richt says that he has addressed Saturday's post-game incident that erupted following the Bulldogs' 33-28 win over Vanderbilt. UGA defensive coordinator and Commodore's head coach James Franklin had to be restrained after they exchanged words at midfield.
"For me, personally, I like it at the end of a ballgame when everybody can just walk across the field and shake hands and say good luck for the next one," Richt said. "Unfortunately, it didn't happen this ballgame."
Apparently, Franklin was upset at Georgia safety Shawn Williams and appeared to say something and point in Williams' direction after the game was over prompting an angry reaction from Grantham who was also allegedly upset over several cut blocks by Vandy players throughout the game. After the game, Grantham vaguely commented on the post-game incident by pledging his love and support for his players but did not comment on what he said to Franklin or what caused the exchange.
So how do we piece together what happened at the end of Saturday night's game between Vanderbilt Commodores head coach James Franklin and Georgia Bulldogs defensive coordinator Todd Grantham? The two, both very clearly passionate and emotional coaches, were shouting while face-to-face and had to be pulled apart by players and other coaches.
To be fair, TV cameras locked in on Grantham, so he's the one who looks much, much worse here. Who knows what sorts of cussy faces Franklin may have been making that we'll never actually see:
Seth Emerson was the first to collect quotes from Franklin, Grantham and Mark Richt. Based on the slim accounts offered by the coaches and the Franklin video below, we can deduce that Vanderbilt was unhappy with the play of safety Shawn Williams and Georgia was upset about Vandy's blocking techniques.
"I hate the fact that at the end of the game we can't shake hands and get off the field like gentlemen," Richt said. Later he added: "We are grown men and we all need to act that way. But we're also competitors."
Here's Franklin addressing the to-do after praising Georgia's fans and Richt (but not quite Grantham, of course) with vigor:
Struggles on special teams have hampered Georgia the entire season. Saturday night in Nashville, they very nearly cost the Bulldogs a victory over Vanderbilt. This game saw a little bit of everything, including a post game shouting match between Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham and Vanderbilt head coach James Franklin. When the dust settled, Georgia had somehow survived against Vanderbilt 33-28.
The Bulldogs appeared to have the game well in hand when Bacarri Rambo intercepted a Jordan Rodgers pass with just 1:10 left in the game. Georgia was unable to run the clock out and lined up to punt with just 15 seconds remaining. As Drew Butler took the snap, Vanderbilt's Udom Umoh broke through the line and blocked the kick which was recovered by Kenny Ladler at the Georgia 20 yard line with just seven seconds remaining in the game.
On the next play, Jordan Rodgers' pass to Chris Boyd went just off the receiver's fingertips with just one second remaining on the clock. On second down, Rodgers completed a pass to Brandon Barden but he was stopped short of the goal line and the Bulldogs had the victory.
Then pandemonium nearly broke out in the post game hand shake as TV camera's caught an incensed Todd Grantham pointing and yelling in the direction of what appeared to be Vanderbilt head coach James Franklin. Coaches and security quickly fought to separate the two teams and usher them back to the locker room.
We are not sure what set Grantham off but he couldn't have been happy with his team's performance on defense. The Bulldogs surrendered 349 total yards to the Commodores with 200 of that total coming on the ground. Jordan Rodgers completed just four passes but ran 11 times for 80 yards.
Georgia had another dreadful performance on special teams. In addition to the blocked punt, the Bulldogs missed two field goals, allowed a 96 yard kick return touchdown, and once again fell victim to a fake punt that set up another Vanderbilt score. If not for the Commodores' four turnovers, the Bulldogs would have likely been in a world of trouble.
Aaron Murray threw for a career high 326 yards with three touchdowns and just one interception. Richard Samuel led the team in rushing with 53 yards on 15 carries. Isaiah Crowell sat out the first quarter for an undisclosed reason and was absent from the lineup for much of the second half. He finished with just 35 yards on 10 carries. Marlon Brown had the best night of his Georgia career hauling in four passes for 121 yards and two touchdowns. Michael Bennett recorded seven catches for 89 yards.
Georgia did nearly everything they could to give this game away but somehow found a way to survive. The Bulldogs will enjoy their bye week and then prepare for their showdown in Jacksonville against Florida.
After missing a couple of field goals early, Blair Walsh is now 4 for 6 on the night after adding two more to his total in the third quarter. Vanderbilt once again struck against Georgia's special teams with a 96 kick off return for a touchdown. Jordan Rodgers then went to work engineering a 75 yard drive that resulted in a Jerron Seymour touchdown to bring Vanderbilt to within 26-21.
Coming out of halftime, a 10 play 61 yard drive by the Bulldogs resulted in a 36 field goal by Blair Walsh that extended Georgia's lead to 23-7 temporarily. On the ensuing kickoff, Andre Hal took the Walsh kickoff and jetted 96 yards for a Commodore's touchdown to make the score 23-14. The Bulldogs would answer yet again with an eight play, 62 yard drive that once again resulted in a Walsh field goal. The quarter closed with the long Commodore drive and Seymour's touchdown.
Marlon Brown's touchdown catch with just 27 seconds left in the half gave Georgia a 20-7 lead over Vanderbilt at halftime. The Commodores have moved the ball unexpectedly well in the first half but haven't had much luck cashing in.
Vanderbilt's lone score was set up by yet another fake punt against Georgia's special teams. On 4th and 13, Ryan Fowler found Andrew East for 35 yards and a first down on the play. The Commodores punched it in thanks to a halfback pass from Zac Stacy to Jordan Matthews for 43 yards making the score 10-7. Blair Walsh would add a field goal for Georgia before Murray's touchdown to Brown finished off the scoring in the first half.
Aaron Murray finishes the first half completing 10 for 19 passes for 118 yards and two touchdowns. After sitting out the first quarter for an unspecified reason, Isaiah Crowell finishes the half with seven carries for 34 yards. Richard Samuel got the start in the game and finished with four carries for 31 yards. Marlon Brown has two catches for 34 yards and a touchdown.
The Bulldogs have done a nice job controlling Vanderbilt's conventional offense. Quarterback Larry Smith completed just 5 of 13 pass attempts for 24 yards and has been intercepted twice. Zac Stacy has 34 yards rushing on eight carries. The fake punt and halfback pass by Fowler and Stacy accounted for 78 of Vanderbilt's 176 total yards in the first half and it's lone touchdown.
Georgia Bulldogs kicker Blair Walsh missed five field goals in 45 attempts from 2009 to 2010. So far this year, he's missed eight of his 17 tries, including a one-of-three showing so far against the Vanderbilt Commodores. Despite that, the Dawgs lead, 10-0, after a blocked punt led to a 20-yard touchdown dart from Aaron Murray to Tavarres King.
All around, a reasonable special teams performance, I guess?
Georgia's defense has held firm, allowing only one significant drive that ended in a Brandon Boykin interception in the end zone. The Dores have 82 yards, with starter Larry Smith completing five of 12 for 24 yards. Murray isn't any better, going four-of-10 for 46 yards.
True freshman wide receiver Chris Conley will continue to start in place of injured wide receiver Rantavious Wooten, who went down against Ole Miss three weeks ago. With the absence of fellow wideout Malcom Mitchell as well, Conley's presence - he had a key 17-yard reception in the second half to extend a drive against Tennessee last week - has been a huge relief for quarterback Aaron Murray. Here's the complete list of injured Bulldogs:
Running back and return specialist Warren Norman, Vandy' s leading rusher a year ago, has been sidelined with various injuries through the season, enough for head James Franklin to redshirt Norman for the remainder of the year and preserve the junior's two remaining years of eligibility. Here's the rest of the injured Commodores:
Georgia's cushion against the Vanderbilt Commodores has jumped two points since opening at (-9.5), the Bulldog's largest favored spread of the season. After being three-point dogs in each of their first two losses, UGA has been favored in all four of their wins. The 11.5 point spread is Georgia's biggest on the road this year, after covering 10 points in a win at Ole Miss.
After flirting with legitimacy in a 3-0 start to the season, Vanderbilt is fast regressing to its storied conference doormat status. The Commodores were blown out by a combined 55-3 to South Carolina (-15) and Alabama (-30). Vandy's best chance of being favored in a conference game this year would come November 12 against Kentucky.
For more on the Bulldogs, visit Dawg Sports, and for more on the Commodores visit Anchor Of Gold. For up to the minute updates on every line this weekend, visit SB Nation's college football odds page.
Your weekly lede about Mark Richt's hot seat is warm, yet certainly not hot. After beating Tennessee in Knoxville for the first time since 2005, Georgia's win streak is at four games. Richt's job security is akin to ice cubs in hot soup, but as your grandmother might say, a loss in Nashville and you'll still scald your tongue.
For his part, Richt is as even handed about Georgia's recent success - and the rise of an increasingly powerful defense - as he was about his job security during an 0-2 start.
"The more success you have and the more confidence you gain, you just feel better," Georgia coach Mark Richt said of the win streak. "But you can't feel like we're arrived anywhere. We really haven't done much other than put ourselves in position to do some special things. We've just got to keep fighting and grinding. But it is good that everybody is beginning to gain more and more confidence in what we're doing and in each other."
Game date, time: Saturday, October 15, 7pm ET
Location: Vanderbilt Stadium, Nashville, Tenn.
Radio: WSB AM 750
The Georgia Bulldogs might be getting back a key piece of their defensive puzzle before the match up with the Florida Gators on Saturday, October 29th. Alec Ogletree, who has been out with a broken bone in his foot suffered in the first quarter of the Bulldogs season-opener against Boise State should be ready to play according to Georgia head football coach Mark Richt. via Atlanta Journal Constitution.
"Ogletree is looking really good," coach Mark Richt said during his weekly news conference earlier Tuesday. "We don’t think there is any question at all that he’ll be ready for the Florida game."
Ogletree, an inside linebacker in Georgia's 3/4 defense was a star of preseason camp after switching from strong safety, where he started last year. Georgia's defense has been alright with Ogletree so far this season as they are currently ranked sixth nationally, and third in the SEC.
For more information and coverage on the Bulldogs visit Dawg Sports.
An overmatched opponent has both our commentators feeling victory in Nashvegas this weekend. No, really!
The Georgia Bulldogs take on the Vanderbilt Commodores on Saturday at 7pm ET in Nashville.
According to the odds, it could be a rough week for SEC hosts.
Georgia Bulldogs stud freshman wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell had to leave the game against the Tennessee Volunteers upon injuring his hamstring late. After the game, he insisted the injury wasn't serious, and coach Mark Richt said he hopes Mitchell can make it back in time for the Florida Gators game.
That's three weeks away, but the Dawgs get the Vanderbilt Commodores before enjoying their bye week. So it's more like half a week away. Not so bad!
UGA will need Mitchell in order to continue its run at the SEC East crown. He entered the game as the team's leading receiver and Aaron Murray's favorite target, then added 126 yards that included a 71-yard sprawl in the fourth quarter. That was the play during which he hurt himself, matter of fact.
Bobby Johnson never succeeded in turning Vanderbilt into a powerhouse, but by the latter half of his career in Nashville, he'd at least turned the Commodores into a team too dangerous to overlook. After a pair of 2-10 seasons, though, Vandy appears to have regressed to doormat status, and it hasn't helped that they're now on their third coach in three years. Former Maryland offensive coordinator James Franklin has taken the reins from Robbie Caldwell, who stepped in after Johnson's abrupt retirement in the summer of 2010. Franklin inherits an experienced roster, but that roster has all of one SEC win to its credit over the last two seasons, so an immediate turnaround doesn't appear likely in Nashville.
BETTER KNOW THE COMMODORES
Coach: James Franklin, first year
Last season: 2-10, 1-7 SEC; finished 6th in the SEC East
Returning starters for 2011: 21 (11 offense, eight defense, two special teams)
Key returners: RB Warren Norman, LB Chris Marve, TE Brandon Barden, CB Casey Hayward
Key losses: DT Adam Smotherman, QB Jared Funk, C Joey Bailey
Best-case scenario: Georgia stomps Vandy badly enough that Aaron Murray is sitting on the bench sipping Powerade midway through the third quarter. Hey, even last year's Georgia team managed to pound the Commodores 43-0 -- they should be able to pull off a similar feat this time. If the Dawgs can beat Vandy and Tennessee and get revenge against either South Carolina or Mississippi State, they'd likely be no worse than 5-2 (4-1 in league play) heading into the bye week, with all five games left on the schedule being winnable.
Worst-case scenario: The Dawgs slog around for four quarters and escape Nashville by the skin of their teeth, picking up another SEC win but inspiring little confidence as they prepare for a late-season stretch that includes Florida, Auburn, and Georgia Tech. In their current state, Vandy doesn't look like much more than a tune-up, but the current state of the program is such that Mark Richt can ill afford getting played close in games his team should be putting away early. If Georgia doesn't enter the Vandy game holding a winning record, a blowout win may be vital to restoring some morale and confidence as the Dawgs head into a late-season schedule loaded with bitter rivals.
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