Georgia vs. Missouri - Final Thoughts
It is funny, I didn't think this Georgia vs. Missouri would get the kind of publicity that it has received thus far. I thought the game might fly under the radar, but, then, Sheldon Richardson decided to give ESPN all it needed to make this a highlight game for Georgia, for Missouri, for the SEC, and for the Nation.
The game will definitely have an electric atmosphere and the eyes of the nation will be watching to see how one of the best defenses in the nation (on paper) will match up against Missouri's high powered and fast paced offense. To be honest, this is one of the most anticipated games for Georgia that I can remember in recent times. The conference and national implications of this game could spring board Georgia back to national relevance or back to SEC mediocrity.
With today being the last day before the game, I thought I'd give you some of my last thoughts and keys for the game.
Aaron Murray in the Big Game
What has been the knock on Aaron Murray? Yards Passing? No. Touchdowns? No. Offensive Efficiency? No.
The knock on Aaron Murray's career at Georgia is that he has yet to show up in the big game. What needs to happen is that Aaron Murray does not need to just show up and run the offense efficiently (he does), he doesn't need to just get Georgia in the right plays (he does), he needs to show up and he needs to be BIG!
Those long passes need to connect. Those sacks need to turn into positive plays. Those turnovers need to be nonexistent. Aaron and Co. need to throw for 300+ with 3 TD's and 0 INT's. That would be big, and that would be a statement for the 3rd year signal caller's maligned career.
Pressure on Missouri's Young OL
Sheldon Richardson really did not do his friends on the OL any favors, because I'm fairly sure John Jenkins, Jarvis Jones, and Shawn Williams are pretty excited to show the young OL for Missouri (3 new starters, including a true frosh) what old-man football really means.
If Georgia can get pressure with their front 4 and close the run lanes for Franklin and his backfield, Georgia will have the upper-hand. Missouri's not built to make a downfield attack. Their attacks are quick hits and runs. Taking away a major part of their offense would make Mizzou 1-dimensional in a way that they do not want to be.
Don't Get Shell Shocked
It is easy for a team coming into an electric environment to take one on the chin, have the stadium rocking, and fall apart piece by piece - see Auburn 2007 & 2011. What Georgia really needs to do is pull an Alabama vs. Georgia in 2008 - come into a stadium and make a statement right away.
If Georgia can strike first and cause some early trouble for Mizzou, I really think that those looming thoughts of, "Can we handle the SEC?" will begin to creep in to the minds of fans and players. Momentum can play a huge role in college football. Georgia needs to get the momentum and keep it away from Missouri.
I hope that all the Dawg fans in Missouri welcome our new brothers to the SEC in a warm, welcoming way. I hope Columbia will be as generous as Athens on a Saturday.
However, I hope our Dawgs welcome Missouri in an entirely different way. The Tigers may be our new brothers, but they are our very younger brothers, and younger brothers tend to run their mouths a little too much.
Time for big brother to shut their mouths.