Post-War Blues

I got stones in my passway, and my road seem dark as night.
I got stones in my passway, and my road seem dark as night.
I have pains in my heart, they have taken my appetite.

Lots of questions will be raised after this game. Namely, is the defense really unable to make tackles and stop the run or is Marcus Lattimore a special player? For our sake, I hope it’s the latter. After all, we’ll only have to face him two more times, provided that he goes pro early. Otherwise, a pretty good blueprint on how to defeat this Dawgs team was drawn up earlier today in Columbia, South Carolina.

Conversely, we’ve got a very good pass rush. Justin Houston is, at times, unblockable, as evidenced by his three sacks. I believe that he will quickly start to see double-teams as the season progresses, which might open opportunities for some of the other guys. Cornelius Washington, I’m looking at you here. And by the way, how awesome a name is Cornelius Washington? I mean, this guy’s a 6’4″ 250 pound man named Cornelius Washington. Might as well call him Bad Motherfucker. With Coach Grantham’s aggressive, blitzing scheme, we should be able to make many opposing quarterbacks a bit uncomfortable at times. Now if we can shore up the tackling and run defense, we’ll be in good shape. No problem, right? Right?

On the other side of the ball, how much do you think we missed having A.J. Green on the field today? I stopped counting at four three-and-outs by our offense. Part of this disappointing stat was due to our apparent inability to block effectively at the point of attack. While Washaun Ealey picked up some good runs early on, the consistency just wasn’t there. Much of the blame for this will be placed on our supposedly dominant offensive line. However, it’s fair to say that missing our starting fullback, Shaun Chapas, who left the game in the first half with an ankle injury, contributed to our ground game woes. And here’s where we missed A.J. the most. South Carolina’s defense was able to play the run first without the threat of A.J. running wild in their secondary. Which brings me to some positive points for our offense.

When Aaron Murray was asked to stand in the pocket and deliver a throw down field, for the most part, he did so with poise and accuracy not usually found in a redshirt freshman quarterback starting in his first conference game on the road. It remains to be seen how his decision-making will be affected when he faces real pressure because, while our offensive line wasn’t able to block well enough for a consistent ground game, it made up for this by blocking extremely well in pass protection. Murray had pretty much all day back there to go through his reads. This is very encouraging but I hope that Murray doesn’t start to feel too comfortable in the pocket. Someone, at some point this season is going challenge our pass protection and I’m a big fan of Murray playing instinctively. He’s shown his ability as a scrambling quarterback and I’d hate for him limit that because he feels like he can take all the time in the world to complete a pass. But he’s a smart kid. From what I’ve seen, we’ve got ourselves a very good quarterback for hopefully the next four years.

The blues is a low-down shakin’ chill, yes preach ’em now.
Is a low-down shakin’ chill.
You ain’t never had ’em, I hope you never will.

This was a tough loss and I’m sure Washaun Ealey is feeling pretty sick right now. His fumble on the goal line as we were driving to get the game to within one point proved as costly as his fumble on the goal line last season against Kentucky as we were driving late to tie the game up. We left some points on the field today and we learned quite a lot about ourselves. The season will only get tougher but so too, I believe, will the boys.

Oh, one more thing: Tech lost today as well!

Go Dawgs!

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