Georgia Bulldogs Not in as Much Trouble as Some Think with South Carolina Game

J. BrownFeatured ColumnistSeptember 8, 2011

Have some faith between the hedges.
Have some faith between the hedges.Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Now don't let that title fool you. As Mark Richt has said, several times, "this game is very important." And by "very important" he might as well say "my job may or may not depend on this game, we'll see." Those ambiguous and general answers are causing all kinds of trouble for Mark Richt as the media looks to get him riled up before the game. But he's not budging.

And he's right not to.

Georgia came into the season with lofty hopes and expectations for the Boise game. And those fell flat. We saw a team that didn't exact instill fear or confidence. It was just there.

But it was one game, one loss, and against a top five team. After last year, perhaps expectations were too high?

With the highly touted Dream Team, fans expect Georgia to be contending with the best of the best, like Carolina did last year with Lattimore. But to expect a freshman, a 18-19 year old kid to do that isn't fair. Marcus Lattimore is (perhaps) a once every few years chance. And after only one game, some are ready to write off some of the freshman: They didn't block well, they didn't do this, they didn't do that.

Again: One game.

In all honesty, this next game is bigger and more important for Georgia. The South Carolina game has more weight and impact on a national stage than the Boise game did, sorry Broncos. But this is not a make or break game for the Bulldogs. This is a game to see if they really can pick themselves up, dust off, and then go at it harder than before. If the team can come out, fight hard and beat up the opponent, and still lose in a close game, I'll be okay with that because that would mean there was improvement.

There were a few flashes of brilliance in last week's game, we just need to see if flashes can be turned into actual flares, something the team and Bulldog Nation can rally around.

If it does happen that Georgia is 0-2 after Saturday, it's not going to be the end of the season. People are too quick to jump to judgement, too quick to call for someone's head, too ingrained into fast food mentality of "NOW DAMMIT!" I want to see the team win, probably not as bad as they do, but I'm not going to be one of those people who cries and cries wanting the coach's head because he lost his first game to a very good team (though I still don't totally buy into the Boise hype).

They have the team and the coaches (more or less) to win this one and surprise everyone.

The South Carolina game is a "very important game," just not the make or break game people want it to be. Everyone wants a return to prominence, but maybe we could be a little more patient about it. If it's a loss, a 10-2 season is still possible. People just lose faith too easily. Now granted, if UGA does lose, a 10-2 season does seem unlikely, but we're calling for the King's head way too early this season. Let's wait until we're six games in and see where we are, because even by then, we could be 3-3 and a 9-3 season isn't hard to imagine with the rest of the schedule...