-- Anybody else a little nostalgic that we might be watching the final quarter of football in the Tommy Tuberville era at Auburn? I'm a little misty eyed. Reminds me of the time I accidentally snubbed him at SEC Media Days and then we called him Tommy Snubberville the rest of the week. Good times.
-- Burns completes a pass to Rod Smith on third-and-five for a first down. Smith is from Snellville. Here's what he had to say about whether he considered going to Georgia: "I never wanted to go to Georgia. That never went across my mind. I didn't really like Georgia. That was probably the last school on my mind."
-- Fannin breaks his second long one of the day -- a 35-yard TD. Approximately 63 Bulldogs had a chance to bring him down, but no one did. This has been one ugly game. SCORE: Auburn 13, Georgia 10.
-- You know what's funny? If Tuberville wasn't nearly out of a job, he probably doesn't go for it on that fourth-down play and Auburn doesn't score that go-ahead TD. But since he had zilch to lose, he goes for it on fourth-and-one from his own 19, gets it, and is on the verge of pulling the upset. Craziness.
-- Auburn was flagged with a questionable pass interference call. Then Tubs spent 5 minutes arguing and got a delay of game flag. Georgia has the ball at the Auburn 40.
-- A.J. pretty much disappeared after a big first quarter, but he played some great defense to prevent Stafford from throwing a pick.
-- Another catch by Knowshon converts a third-and-five. Georgia has a first down at the 18. Had he not gotten it, it would have been interesting to see if Richt sent Blair Walsh out.
-- Stafford finds Green in the end zone. The throw was high -- and it needed to be to keep from being intercepted -- and Green went up and got it. Six-play, 60-yard drive for Georgia. SCORE: Georgia 17, Auburn 13. That missed PAT for the Tigers looms pretty large now.
-- And the Blair Walsh Project is at it again. The kickoff goes out of bounds, giving Auburn the ball at the 40. Unbelievable.
-- Montez Billings beats Ramarcus Brown for a 25-yard gain to the Georgia 40. I'm really just not sure how I feel about the defensive effort today. I guess you can't argue with 13 points, but it still hasn't been a particularly impressive performance against an offense that is far from elite.
-- Nice stop by the Georgia D on a third-and-2. Ben Tate went nowhere, with Gamble and Wynn getting credit for the tackle. Auburn is going for a 37-yard FG try for some reason which I can't quite figure. The Tigers' D hasn't stopped Georgia often today. That's a lot of confidence Tubs is showing in his D with only 4:13 left to play.
-- Ah, nevermind. Tommy changed his mind during a timeout, and Auburn will go for it. Burns goes to Billings in the end zone -- a bit of an odd call on fourth-and-2. Now it's up to the Georgia offense to seal the deal.
I'm going to head down to the field. There's only one elevator from the press box and it doesn't hold many people, so it's now or never for me. I'll have more post game.
-- Personal foul No. 6 on Georgia to start the half. It was offsetting with Auburn, though.
-- Dawgs defense forces a three-and-out. That's three of six Auburn drives in which the D has forced a three-and-out.
-- Bruce Figgins makes a catch for 15 yards. That's just his second catch this season.
-- I'm liking how Georgia is finding Knowshon on passing plays a bit more lately. He has five catches for 86 yards in the past two games. He had just 157 receiving yards prior to that all season.
-- A run up the middle on third-and-seven. Interesting. Georgia will go for it on fourth-and-9 rather than try a long field goal. That's two weeks in a row Richt has chosen not to send Walsh out on a 50-plus yarder. Of course, that's also two weeks in a row Georgia came nowhere near converting, too.
-- Georgia Sports Blog seems to think we're looking at a noon kickoff next week. Can't say I'm thrilled about getting up that early again, but at least I won't have to worry about writing on deadline. Kind of a bummer for UGA fans, though, that the final three games of the season were all early starts.
-- Georgia has outgained Auburn thus far 254-118, yet is up by just 1. Ug-ly.
-- Logan Gray is the deep man again. I'm guessing we won't be seeing Prince on punt return again today.
-- Knowshon is over 100 yards for the day.
-- Shaun Chapas failed to pick up a first down on a fourth-and-1. Believe it or not, that was his first carry since the Vandy game. Stafford keeps it and picks up the first on fourth down.
-- Can't say I was a fan of the fade pass to Durham in the end zone on third down. And now the Blair Walsh Project continues... and it's good! SCORE: Georgia 10, Auburn 6.
-- After being scorched on the ground for three straight weeks, Georgia has allowed just 39 rushing yards so far.
-- Georgia just burned its second timeout of the half as Auburn is going for it on fourth-and-inches from its own 19. Dangerous play call, but Burns' QB keeper barely gets the job done.
END OF THE THIRD QUARTER (already? really?): Georgia 10, Auburn 6.
Some stats of note at the half:
-- First quarter time of possession: Georgia 9:46, Auburn 5:14. Second half TOP: Georgia 4:39, Auburn 10:21.
-- Georgia has run 16 times and thrown 11.
-- Georgia was flagged for FIVE personal fouls in the half.
-- Say what you want about Auburn this year, but they are tough in the first quarter. They have now outscored their opponents 59-13 in the opening quarter this year.
-- Here's the conversation I assume goes on in Mike Bobo's head on third down: "Gotta get 10 yards here. What to do, what to do. You know, I could really go for a nice ham-and-cheese sandwich right now. I hope I remembered to DVR "According to Jim" this week. I like this song the band is playing. It has a nice rhythm to it. Oh, crap, gotta get a play in. Quarterback draw! Go!"
-- The Auburn band is currently playing "Surfin' USA" during a time out, which I can only assume is meant to be ironic given that I'm freezing right now.
-- The officiating in this game is not good. A late hit flag was thrown on Reshad Jones after he dragged Burns out of bounds. That kind of thing is only a personal foul in the NFL!
-- Four penalties for 40 yards on Georgia already. It's pretty easy to see why fans are so frustrated with this team.
-- Jarius Wynn got a nice hit in on Burns and shockingly didn't draw a flag. That defensive highlight, however, was completely undermined by a 12-yard gain by Ben Tate for a first down.
-- Burns is hit, fumbles and Geno Atkins recovers at its own 36. It's absurd that Georgia so desperately needed a play like that, but it was definitely needed.
-- And a three-and-out. That was nice. Thanks for coming out, folks. Tip your veal, try the waitresses.
-- The D forces a three-and-out of its own. Kade Weston had the tackle of Burns on third down. Weston is someone whose name hasn't been mentioned in too many games this year. I figured he would have a nice season with Jeff Owens out, but he has battled knee injuries of his own all year and just hasn't contributed much on Saturdays.
-- Logan Gray replaces Prince Miller as the punt returner. Fair catch. Seems like that always happens when Gray is in the game.
-- For those of you watching the game at home, the Albany Herald's Paul Dehner invented a Raycom drinking game to help you find some enjoyment in Raycom's terrible broadcasting.
-- Knowshon bolts 35 yards and finally finds the end zone. Believe it or not, that is Knowshon first career receiving TD at Georgia. He now has 127 total yards in the game. SCORE: Georgia 7, Auburn 6.
-- Hey, another personal foul on Georgia. Seriously, wasn't there some discussion a few weeks back about cutting down on penalties? I could swear I remember someone talking about that.
-- And another personal foul. That's six flags for 70 yards so far today.
-- Tripp Chandler has a knee injury and is doubtful to return.
-- On a third-and-5, Auburn calls... a quarterback draw! Touche, Mr. Tuberville.
HALFTIME SCORE: Georgia 7, Auburn, 6. That was fun. We should do it again some time.
-- Richard Samuel never fields a kick cleanly.
-- Matthew Stafford was able to find AJ Green a lot quicker this week than last. He picks up 17 yards on Stafford's first pass of the game.
-- Three plays. Three first downs.
-- Stafford must have decided he liked that fade pass to A.J. last week. He ran it again on third down from the four. Green hauled it in but was out of bounds when he gained control of the ball.
-- Yikes. If Auburn wins this game it will be entirely due to Georgia's special teams. Blair Walsh's kick was blocked. That's the sixth unsuccessful field-goal try in his last nine attempts. I wonder what Andy Bailey is up to these days.
-- I'm extremely interested to see what kind of a game Georgia's defense plays. Auburn's offense is not good, but it is improving. The Tigers have racked up 774 yards of offense in their last six quarters.
-- Asher Allen and Montez Billings found themselves in a scuffle at midfield. Both were flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct.
-- Auburn's offense didn't make much noise on its first possession. Kodi Burns was able to pick up a first down, but the coverage on him has looked significantly better than what Georgia was able to do with Randall Cobb last week.
-- The Tigers got a nice bounce on their punt, giving the ball back to Georgia at its own 6.
-- Knowshon has 80 yards already. We're 9 minutes into the game. I'm not a math whiz by any means, but I'm fairly certain that projects to a 3,000-yard afternoon for him. I'm rounding up, of course.
-- And a penalty negates a first down. Shocking.
-- I'm 90 percent certain Mike Bobo bet the under in this game.
-- Fantastic kick coverage by Darryl Gamble to pin Auburn at its own 6. He made that play completely on his own. Meanwhile, two Auburn players had Ramarcus Brown pinned on the ground during the play, and Mark Richt ran onto the field while the play was still in progress to yell at the ref for ignoring it.
-- Georgia is averaging nearly nine yards per play, has held the ball for more than eight minutes, has racked up 141 yards and seven first downs.... and has zero points.
-- Something tells me Georgia's pass defense stats are going to improve this week.
-- On two drives so far, Auburn's offense has tallied 16 yards. Of course, the score is still zeroes.
-- Muffed punt by Prince Miller, recovered by Auburn. This has to be about the worst two-game stretch of special teams in a long time for Georgia. Auburn gets the ball at its own 48. (BTW, there was a roughing the kicker flag on that play that would have given the Tigers a first down anyway.)
-- Burns to Mario Fannin, who makes Georgia's tacklers look dumb and rumbles into the end zone. This is absurd. I'm expecting Auburn to crank some Soulja Boy soon.
END OF FIRST QUARTER: Auburn 6, Georgia 0.
PREGAME: Greetings from Auburn, Ala. Traffic on the way in was unpleasant, and suffice it to say there are a few drivers who don't think very highly of us now.
The most productive thing I've done so far this morning has been to come up with good team names if the NBA were to expand to Europe. The top ones include the Spanish Armada (or possibly the Spanish Inquisition), the Belgian Waffles and the Dutch Ovens. I don't think that last one's going to catch on.
This is as good as it gets when I have to wake up this early. I need coffee.
- Couple quick notes:
Tripp Chandler is starting at tight end in place of Bruce Figgins.
Reps from the Independence Bowl are here to scout Auburn. So that's good for Tigers fans. One more win, and you can punch your ticket to Shreveport!
They posted the lyrics to the "Star-Spangled Banner" on the scoreboard at Jordan-Hare as the band played the music. The final line was displayed as "the home of the brave?" Why the question mark? I'm Ron Burgundy?
Saturday, November 15, 2008