In the six years I've been writing about Georgia Football, I've always found myself working with mere crumbs of inside knowledge. In fact, my sources are the ones who have sources. Going one step further, I take the pulse of the Bulldog Nation through the blogs that I read (on the right) and the message board(s) that I visit (on the right). That's not to say I rip off the information I talk about, it's just that I'm not breaking news and I'm totally comfortable with that. It's nice being the guy who prefers commentary above scooping, particularly since I'm a heavy procrastinator.
When I say I take the pulse of the Bulldog Nation, that's exactly what I'm talking about. It's just a gauge to see if I'm in the majority or minority on any given issue. There's usually little information to talk about (thankfully this offseason has produced no police blotter storylines *knocks feverishly on wood*), and so we all kind of chime in on the same stuff. I typically find myself in the majority on most views, with a little bit more optimism than some. However, I like reading stuff that I agree with and I love reading stuff that I disagree with. It challenges my views and makes me an all-around better college football and UGA fan, at least in my opinion.
So why all that explaining and so little getting-to-the-point? It's because my point is that lately, I'm frustrated knowing that we all pretty much feel the same way. It's frustrating because there are DOZENS of UGA bloggers or twitterers (myself included) and you know how many of us know with a certain degree of accuracy what's going to happen this year?
If you encounter a UGA fan that knows for a fact (or with at least 90% confidence) that we're going to win 10 games or lose six, he or she is lying directly to your face. That person is blowing so much sunshine or smoke up your butt that you will either fart rainbows or signal an American Indian what you ate for dinner last night. There used to be a science to this from 2002-2005. UGA was always going to have a stout Defense, QB play was going to be consistent and we were going to milk the clock like it had an udder.
Since 2005, there's no formula. From Willie's maddening Sobakawa Soft Zone to Bobo's Quest for Balance in Running and Going Through the Air, we as fans have been stuck in this perpetual shrugging of shoulders when asked what we really think is going to happen to our team that upcoming season. Honestly, how many of you out there felt like the lightning in a bottle that existed in 2007 would even last until 2008? After the first arrest you should've known something was up. Speaking of 2007, everyone wants to look at the Florida game as our turning point. That's a load of crap. We were a forced fumble and a game-winning kick at Vanderbilt away from having a season that defied the logic of losing to them in 2006.
You'll notice that the title of this post mentions the science before the frustration. We haven't even spoken about the science. You know why? It doesn't exist. You want a formula to what a normal UGA fan thinks? Here it is:
Two parts "optimism"
One part "show me on the field"
Three parts "we're working harder in the weightroom this offseason than we have in years"
One part "why are our players on twitter?"
Half part "thank God we have the bye week before Florida"
Half part "...but we can't seem to win below the state line"
One part "when will we have a new Uga?"
One part "Michael Adams sucks"
Boom. UGA fans in a nutshell (again, myself included). How can anyone come up with a level-headed analysis with all that going on? The answer: You can't.
That's the problem right now. From The Good Senator to Tyler Dawgden at the Georgia Sports Blog and everywhere in between, there's this constant state of knowing what to fix, but not sure if the coaches are going to fix it, and it's MADDENING. Mackie thinks we'll beat Boise State but lose to South Carolina? Why? Because in his words:
"until I see them play September 3rd I have no idea how this team looks."Amen.
September 3rd is the date to remember, folks. It's a bigger game than I can put into words. Well, at least words that will do it justice. It's bigger than a day. It's an event. It is the time we'll find out whether 2011 is closer to 2002 than 2010.
Before that...we'll your guess is good as mine.
Until next time kids.