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From the Editor : Vance Leavy

Well Bulldog fans it doesn’t get any bigger than Saturday’s battle versus the LSU Tigers. And thanks to the ESPN GameDay extravaganza coming to Athens this sucker is going to be off the hook. It will have all the pomp and circumstance that makes college football the greatest sport on Earth. But most importantly, it will be the show on the field that will rein supreme. Les Miles brings his Bayou Bengals to the Classic City firing on all cylinders. As usual, the LSU defense is full of massive players with unreal speed and athleticism. And the same can be said on the other side of the ball, where the combination of Zach Mettenberger’s precise throwing and the power running game certainly have this fan and journalist wondering how in world our Bulldogs will stop them. Nonetheless, I like Georgia’s chances because of the 12th man that will have Sanford Stadium rocking before, during and hopefully after the game. Yes, sometimes the Bulldog Nation isn’t the loudest in the SEC, but here lately we are certainly trending in the right direction. A great example of this exuberance was this past Saturday’s game versus North Texas. I think we can all agree that the play wasn’t a thing of beauty, but despite that and a good bit of rain, Georgia fans remained behind the team, which most certainly helped when the score was tied 21-21. Our boys in red and black would respond with the final 24 points of the game to snuff out any thoughts of David slaying Goliath. A tip of the hat has to go to the Mean Green. They came to play in all phases. In fact, I would be willing to bet that Todd Gurley would admit that North Texas hit him harder than Clemson and South Carolina combined. But you know what? That was just what the doctor ordered as far as I’m concerned. By now, we all know that any LSU team is all about being more physical than its opponent. North Texas gave the Bulldogs a fierce fight that forced them to decide whether they wanted to answer the call and continue towards the making of a magical season. They answered in a big way and this Saturday’s CBS game of the week will be an even greater challenge. So what will it take to send Tiger Bait back to the Bayou with their tails between their legs? If you’re a loyal reader of BI, then you know our first requirement will be a healthy does of running the football. Todd Gurley is the best running back the University of Georgia has seen in decades. And what I like best is he is a beast that wants the ball even more as the game goes deeper. So let’s all hope that Coach Richt and Bobo also have this on the top their list. Next up, is the im-

mediate need to clean up the little things that make a football team complete. Yet again, this is something we at BI have been stressing all 11 years of publishing. Whether it’s shoring up all special teams or addressing clock management, there’s a ton of room for improvement. In 2013, the most frustrating aspect of what I’m talking about has been how our coaches and teams have closed out the second quarter and started the third. In the Clemson, South Carolina and North Texas game, Georgia was most fortunate to be getting the ball to start the third quarter, but in all three games they gave up points in the waning minutes of the second quarter to then go three and out to start the third quarter. They got away with this double whammy twice and didn’t once. You can bet the house that if this nasty trend isn’t righted on Saturday, Georgia will go home with a 2-2 record and will be virtually eliminated in the national championship conversation. Oh yeah, and please eliminate the silly first and second down turnovers. I have no problem being aggressive, but my goodness it’s demoralizing to give the other team the ball after only one or two downs. Finally, like in most top-notched SEC battles, the victor will be the team that gets the most push from their big uglies on both sides of the ball. On offense, our line just needs to hold their blocks long enough to give Aaron Murray and Todd Gurley the time they need to shine. We have the talent to make big things happen, but it will require thwarting LSU’s monsters just long enough. Defensively, it will all come down to leverage. Our interior is by no means massive, but I’m banking on line coach Chris Wilson’s early Fall Camp drills to be the difference. I was there on Day 1, when he forced his unit to execute a drill under a trampoline until they virtually were out of gas. All that work will come to pass Saturday. Now it’s time for me to exit stage left and let the cards fall where they may as far as giving free advise to our coaches and team. Give them hell guys, we are definitely behind you and look forward to you making us proud. Please enjoy this issue of BI. Inside you will find plenty of fans photos from the North Texas game. And don’t miss Murray Poole’s Q&A (page 5) with Coach Wilson’s wife. It was neat to learn that Wilson has quite the sense of humor and great to hear that the Athens community has been so welcoming to UGA’s newest coaching family. And for the Diamond Dog fans out there, be sure to check out Rob Sherrell going one on one with Kyle Farmer (page 21) who continues his pursuit of making it to the majors. And Loran Smith gives a great tribute (page 18) to the giving life that Bulldog and Athenian, Claude McBride lived. And our sports guys have plenty of tidbits to get you ready for the LSU game. Tick, tock … tick, tock. Finally on pages 12 and 13, be sure to see Cheri’s Q&As with Bulldogs and Golden Isles’ residents, Lexie Love and Stephanie Hooks. Our hope is that by reading their tips for enjoying the coast you will go ahead and make your plans to spend some time there in the coming weeks. Between the St. Simons Island Food Festival, the Brunswick Rockin’ Stewbilee, Georgia-Florida and the PGA Tour’s McGladrey Classic, there is a slew of fun to be had in the Golden Isles. Gotta run, but it is definitely time to put this silly hiccup of not playing well when appearing on ESPN’s GameDay to rest. Let’s show the nation how the Big Dawg eats! Man, it’s going to be fun.

LSU Cha Cha Cha Publishing Inc. Editor Vance Leavy

Creative Director Cheri Leavy

Sports Guru Jeff Dantzler

Sales Caroline Kinney, Rob Saye, Holly Stanfill,Shannon Smallwood

Multimedia Director Greg Poole

Sports Logan Booker, Murray Poole, Trent Smailwood

Layout/Design Cheri Leavy, Vance Leavy

Sports Photography Rob Saye

Columnists Carlton DeVooght, Al Hickson, Rob Sherrell , Loran Smith. Chad White

Interns Pierce Persons. Annie Trice

Delivery Hatton Abernathy, Martin Cameron Matt Clutter, Will Hayes, Zack Miller, , Champ Vance

LSU, September 24, 2013

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If Georgia is going to be a championship caliber team, much like the clash with South Carolina in which the Bulldogs prevailed, Saturday’s rumble with LSU is simply a game in which the red and black must prevail. Over the last few years, Georgia’s struggles against top ten teams have been well documented. In their last ten games dating back to last season, the Bulldogs have squared off with four teams ranked seventh or higher. Georgia beat Florida 17-9 in Jacksonville. The Bulldogs lost the heart-breaker of heart-breakers to Alabama 32-38 in the Southeastern Conference Championship Game. Turnovers and penalties contributed mightily to a disappointing 38-35 season-opening loss at Clemson. Then the Bulldogs “burned the boats,” and captured the absolute must win against South Carolina 41-30 the following Saturday between the hedges. LSU and Georgia have had many parallels and high profile showdowns during the 2000s. The last time the two met, the powerhouse Bayou Bengals were vastly superior, and mauled the Bulldogs 42-10 in the 2011 SEC Championship Game, completing one of the greatest regular seasons in college football history. The Bayou Bengals had also beaten eventual national champion Alabama, which won the rematch in the New Orleans Super Dome. The Tigers opened that season with a win over eventual Rose Bowl champion Oregon in Dallas. LSU blew out West Virginia in Morgantown. The Mountaineers went on to win the Orange Bowl. The week before the SEC Championship Game, LSU pounded eventual Cotton Bowl champion Arkansas. The Bulldogs opened that year with two straight losses to highly ranked foes, Boise State and South Carolina. But the schedule softened, the Dogs won 10 straight and got back to Atlanta, while putting a slumping program back on track. It is now two years later. While Georgia was oh-so-close a year ago to playing for it all, LSU was also on the doorstep of that special year. The Bayou Bengals lost 14-6 at Florida, then had their hearts ripped out on Alabama’s last minute drive in a 21-17 Baton Rouge Tide victory. This is a measuring stick of how far Georgia has come. It is apropos that LSU is the opposition. Georgia went 13-1, capturing the SEC title in 2002. The lone loss was to Florida. But there were two undefeated teams at the end of that regular season, so Ohio State and Miami played for the national championship. LSU went 13-1, capturing the SEC title in 2003. The lone loss was to Florida. There were no undefeated teams at the end of that regular season, and the Bayou Bengals got a spot in the national championship game, and beat Oklahoma. The site of the title tilt was right next door in New Orleans. The two had the same season in successive seasons, but things broke right for Georgia, while the Bulldogs had some Walter White, breaking bad with the

two unbeaten. In that 2003 season, there was an epic showdown in Baton Rouge. The Tigers beat the Bulldogs 17-10 in one of the most physical, hard-hitting games anyone will ever see. Georgia six times in the first half penetrated the Tigers 35-yard line, but came away with only a field goal. With the game tied 10-10, the Bulldogs kicked off and Georgia was pleading for a block in the back call that did not come. LSU hit the big play and prevailed. The Tigers would go on to win a rematch in the SEC Championship Game 34-13, and go on to play for, and win that national title. Had Georgia won and history played out the same, it would have been the once beaten Bulldogs playing Ole Miss in Atlanta. Georgia would beat the Tigers the next two seasons, thrashing LSU 45-16 between the hedges in 2004, with David Greene tossing five touchdown passes. The Bulldogs crushed LSU in the 2005 SEC Championship Game 34-14, capturing the program’s second league crown in four years. Two seasons later, fate would converge on Georgia and LSU again. And it would be the Bayou Bengals who were most favorably touched by that oh so fickle finger. The Bulldogs were twice beaten, dropping a 16-12 decision to South Carolina and suffering a 35-14 thrashing at Tennessee. The Tigers lost twice as well, both in overtime, to Kentucky and Arkansas. LSU won the SEC west and made it to Atlanta. The Bulldogs lost out on the Georgia Dome, as Tennessee pulled out a last second victory over Vanderbilt and clipped Kentucky 5856 in triple overtime. The Volunteers remained twice beaten in SEC play and got to Atlanta, where LSU won. A regular season of chaos concluded with one of the craziest days in college football annals. LSU, which entered the day ranked No. 6 vaulted to No. 2 and earned a spot in the BCS Championship Game. Georgia was the hotter team, winning six – and eventually seven – straight after the loss to Tennessee. Had Georgia gotten to the Dome, the Bulldogs, healthier and hotter than the beaten up Tigers, who fell the week prior to Arkansas, would have been favored. The Tigers went on to blast Ohio State, in New Orleans again, to win the national title. Georgia humiliated Hawaii in the Sugar Bowl and finished No. 2. Like for Georgia ’02 and LSU ’03, it was the same season, but the football gods smiled on the Tigers. In 2007, Georgia and LSU had the same season again, but the football gods again smiled on the Tigers. Now here we are with Georgia and LSU clashing in a top ten battle with SEC and national stakes. As far as the latter goes, because of the Bulldogs mistakeladen season-opening loss at Clemson, Georgia has no margin for error. A loss to LSU, and a good season is still within reach. A win over the Fightin’ Tigers means a great one could be within the Bulldogs grasp, and perhaps in 2013, ten years after that day of destiny in Baton Rouge, fate will favor Georgia.


Poole Shots

by Murray Poole

Tina Wilson finds life in the SEC amazing

BEST STEAKHOUSE 1 9 % ! 2 3 2 5 . . ) . ' J E Z E B E L M AG A Z I N E R E A D E R S U RV E Y

The Wilson family - Caleb, Tina, Chris and Colby

Tina Wilson was an Oklahoma Sooner in college and that's where she met her future husband, now first year Georgia defensive line coach, Chris Wilson. After serving on the coaching staff of his alma mater in Norman for five years, the Wilsons then hit the trail of the Bulldogs, Chris first serving as co-defensive coordinator and then defensive coordinator at Mississippi State while coaching the defensive line. Wilson, who also had prior coaching stops at Colorado, Illinois State, Northern Illinois and Indiana State, then joined the staff of Mark Richt's Bulldogs in January of this year. At Georgia, the Wilson family instantaneously fell in love with the school and the Athens community but as Tina points out, it wasn't an easy move at first, due to her son and daughter being entrenched in school and sports in Starkville. "Chris came right after the bowl game," she recalls. "The kids and I, because both of our kids were in their basketball seasons with their schools, didn't come until that last week of March so that they could finish the last nine weeks at their schools. Our son Caleb, who is a junior at North Oconee, it was important for him to do spring football here rather than back in Mississippi, which wouldn't have done him any good. That was the main reason we moved; otherwise, we might have waited until summer." In both Mississippi and Athens, Tina Wilson quickly learned what football in the Deep South, and the Southeastern Conference in particular, was all about. "At Oklahoma, I kind of knew it as the Big Eight and then it went to the Big 12 and once we were back in Oklahoma in the coaching world, we played in the national championship and that was kind of the highlight," she said. "You hear about the SEC over and over and you have that respect but you don't really get it until you're in it and coaching in it. What I've figured out in the SEC there's really no such thing as a break. You're getting after it every week and the respect level for the SEC is just amazing," Tina said. "And of course all we heard about was how neat the city of Athens was and all the different opportunities that are here, the restaurants and the music and all. And I think we were looking forward to that because Starkville is a much smaller community. So that was definitely a nice experience for us." Tina then got another profound experience when she attended her first home game in Sanford Stadium, the Sept. 7 game with South Carolina."That night after the game, once everything settled down and we finally got to talk to each other, we talked about how loud it was. Chris was talking about how loud it was for him on the sidelines and he asked how loud it was where I was and I'm like, 'It was loud!' In this question-and-answer with Bulldawg Illustrated, Tina Wilson gives the Bulldog Nation a glimpse into her background and what it's like to be married to a college football coach at Georgia Years married, children?

We've been married for 18 years. Caleb is 17 and a junior quarterback at North Oconee. And Colby is 13. She plays basketball and soccer and Caleb plays basketball as well. The most gratifying part of being married to a college football coach?

Just the experience ... you know a lot of people look at it as a negative about moving around and seeing different things but I just think because of Chris and his opportunities it's exposed me and it's exposed our kids to so many different places and enabled us to meet so many different people. And I just think it teaches them independence where I feel like they can go anywhere in the

United States and can make it happen and be successful in what they're doing and, including me, we don't know a stranger and we're going to get to know people real quick and we're going to get involved in the community real quick. The most challenging part of being married to a college football coach?

I think and probably what I faced this year is that when your kids are smaller it's easier in my mind to move. Once they get older that's the hard part. And especially with Caleb, his football team in Starkville had just won their state championship and Caleb was the starting quarterback and we pulled the rug right out from underneath him. So I told Chris, we've got to get two years out of this gig. I'm not moving our son again. And he said, "yes ma'am!" Where did you grow up and what made it special?

I grew up in Rockwall, about 20 miles outside of Dallas. In Texas, we love our football and I was a huge Dallas Cowboys fan and that's all I knew. I wanted to go not too far away and my horses were in training in Oklahoma and so I chose the University of Oklahoma and back then, that's when Barry Switzer was the king. Chris and I started dating there (though both from Dallas, they had never met) and we've been together 25 years, married for 18 so me being a coach's wife, my friends in high school they laugh and say, "you know what, you are the perfect coach's wife because you always loved and enjoyed that sport."

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Other than rooting on the Bulldogs, what are some of your other passions?

I love to travel and I would say I'm my kids' No. 1 fan. I try not to miss any of their events. The business I do is called Cabi. I'm an independent consultant for women's clothing line. I work out of my home and I control my schedule. So I love being my kids' No. 1 fan and, obviously, being Chris' fan and supporting everything he does. But most of all, I love supporting his players. We have the D-line over for dinner and I hear people say all the time the players get so much from us but I tell them, they do just as much for our family as we do for them. I mean, they're like big brothers to my kids and we're just one big family.

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What do you like most about UGA and living in the Athens area?

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I would say the sense of community and just the sense of pride and, obviously, the beauty of this place. And everybody is just so friendly and so welcoming and you could just tell football it was close because people were starting to talk about it. You know, people don't know who I am so even in the grocery store you hear people talking about each other or in the car pool line. It's just a neat place, very welcoming. If your husband wasn’t a college coach, what career do you envision him having?

I jokingly say my husband could be a comedian if he ever stopped coaching football because he says the funniest things and he's not even trying to be funny. I could also see him commentating, like doing the ESPN stuff where you could still have fun up there like the Game Day guys. Chris can make people laugh and just has those people skills. Your favorite UGA football moment?

It definitely was the South Carolina game. Probably the very beginning, just hearing the crowd and that first kickoff and they're doing that cheer and the kids and I are looking at each other like, "we've got to learn these cheers." I just think that whole environment so it's gotta be (South Carolina) because that was our first home game.

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www.bulldawgillustrated.com • 5


No. 9 Dogs vs. No. 6 Tigers photos by Rob Saye

By Logan Booker/BI

fter paying nearly $1 million to bring North Texas to Athens last week, the No. 9 Dawgs might be willing to pay nearly $1 million to build a cat-proof fence around Sanford Stadium to keep the No. 6 LSU Tigers out this week. In a matchup worthy of ESPN College Gameday trekking all the way down south from last week’s location in North Dakota, the Dawgs will be facing their 3rd top-10 nationally ranked team in four games this season. Win, and the college football world may declare UGA a legitimate national championship contender, but lose, and the road ahead may have one of the middle-Florida bowl games as a best-case scenario.

A

Know the Opponent LSU is coming into Athens at 4-0 (1-0 in the SEC) after handedly knocking off Auburn at home last week. Auburn has now won its first four games for the seventh time under head coach Les Miles, which speaks volumes of the success they’ve had early on in the season. It may be a shame that this game is scheduled with a September date, as opposed to a November one. LSU brings with them the most balanced offense the Dawgs will have seen this season, with former Georgia Bulldog Zach Mettenberger at quarterback -who has a big throwing arm- and one of the nation’s best running backs in Jeremy Hill. Hill ran for a career high 184 yards against Auburn last week, and his confidence will surely be high coming into Athens. Mettenberger, who was asked to leave

Georgia after an incident stemming in a south Georgia bar back in 2010, has matured into one of the nation’s better pro-style quarterbacks, and will likely look to exploit the young talent the Dawgs will trot onto the field in the secondary. After losing a slew of players to the NFL last season, LSU has once again reloaded all across their depth chart, and could be the best team the Dawgs have faced this season. The Offense Aaron Murray had a career day this past week against a Conference USA defense, which included a 98-yard touchdown pass for his 100th as a Dawg. It will not be as easy this week, as LSU boasts one of the best defenses in the SEC, and the nation. Running backs Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall are going to have to find success in the running game early in order for Aaron Murray to successfully run some play action, or just to keep the secondary guessing in order to open up some receivers. There may not be many long plays this game, as the offense needs to successfully chip away at the LSU defense, and focus on keeping the first down sticks moving down the field with them. The Defense The Georgia defensive front had a bit of a hay-day against North Texas last week, keeping consistent pressure on their quarterback while only allowing

seven rushing yards. However, the LSU offensive line is not the North Texas offensive line, but the defense should be able to at least minimize the damage from the run game. LSU running back Jeremy Hill is a run-it-straight-at-you style runner, and will rarely even attempt to cut it out to the sides. This boasts well for Georgia, as they have been beaten countless times on plays to the outside this season. The secondary got a nice tuneup last week by facing pass-happy North Texas, but will face a far more talented passing game in LSU. The freshman starters will need to put trust in their linebackers to stop the run, while shoring up their coverage on the wide receivers, or Zach Mettenberger will pick them apart all day. How the Dawgs will win In order for the Dawg fans to ring the chapel bell deep into the night this coming Saturday, the offensive line is going to have to play to their potential and open up holes for the running backs. This will allow the Dawgs’ offense to control the clock, as well as open up plenty of options for Aaron Murray’s arm to catch the LSU defense not being honest. If this does indeed happen, the Dawgs’ front seven on defense is going to have to do whatever they can to put pressure on Zach Mettenberger, disrupting any rhythm he may find himself in. If and when all these stars align this Saturday, you can expect a close game throughout, with the Dawgs having the edge due to more worthy weapons on the offensive side of the ball.

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Georgia 45 - North Texas 21

Andrea Barger and Allison Maxwell

Phil Coburn and Eleanor Coburn

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Will Porter and Lillian Porter

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Georgia 45 - North Texas 21

All-American Captains - State Rep Demetrius Douglas, Blake Sailors, Amarlo Herrera, Todd Gurley and Aaron Murray

Emma Meeks and Craig Meeks

Cade Hodgin, Cope Smith, Reese Cross, James Groves and Jase Smith

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& Tony tidwell cd release (americana)

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BI

Georgia 45 - North Texas 21

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LEARN how to make your brand sing (in music city, no less) The Southern C Summit Series is headed to Ruby Nashville! Presented by The Southern C – The Social Network of the South - (www.thesouthernc.com) this intimate niche gathering brings together the best of the Southern blogging community, businesses and brands for learning and networking. Offering rich content, conversation and collaboration opportunities, the Summit Series also features educational sessions and panel discussions led by well-known ;W]\PMZV VIUM[ [WKQIT UMLQI TMILMZ[ IVL WVTQVM QVÆ]MVKMZ[  <PM LIa _QTT conclude with a private tour of the Southern Living Idea House at Fontanel followed by “Cocktails & Conversation” with Editor-in-Chief Lindsay Bierman.

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THREE GREAT DAYS ONE GREAT EXPERIENCE October 31 to November 1 A tradition in the Golden Isles for more than thirty years, the Georgia-Florida Golf Classic is the largest golf tournament in the area and takes place over three days leading up to the big game. Register as an individual or a four-man team and compete in flights for great prizes and year-long bragging rights. This year will include a Rockinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Seafood Feast - bringing back traditional Low Country Boil and Oyster Roast.

Register to play with celebrity former players including Rodney Hampton, Keith Henderson, Willie McClendon, Jimmy Orr, Travis Taylor, Ben Troupe, Terry LeCount and others. And this year join the SouthernPigskin.com FanFest as we wrap up the tournament results. Come celebrate the traditions of the Georgia-Florida rivalry with an event like no other - all on Jekyll Island! Registration now open, go to jekyllisland.com or call (912) 635-2368 for more information.


BULLDAWGS GUIDE TO THE GOLDEN ISLES Tips to Enjoy the Coast With Stephanie Hooks, UGA Graduate 34th Annual Georgia Florida Classic, Jekyll Island (pictured with the legendary Johnny Paulk, Georgia Golf Hall of Fame Member and Director of golf at the Jekyll Island Golf Club)

Tell us why Jekyll Island is so special. Jekyll Island is special because of its history and natural beauty. And, as a resident, I think itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sort of like Mayberryâ&#x20AC;Śvery laid back, easy to get around and get along. With fewer than 600 residents, you pretty much know almost everybody. Simply put, Jekyll Island is like no other; and you either â&#x20AC;&#x153;get itâ&#x20AC;?, or you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t.

What should every visitor to the Golden Isles make sure they do before they leave? Explore the Village on St. Simons, experience Christ Church, take a Segway tour on Jekyll through the maritime forest, and visit the Georgia Sea Turtle Center.

Tell us a little bit about the fun on Jekyll Island for the GA/FLA celebration. Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll enjoy three days of fun leading up to the big weekend with our 34th Annual Georgia Florida Classic, featuring parties, good music, lots of seafood and just a good â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;ole rowdy time disguised as a golf tournament! About 400 golfers compete for great prizes, and top flight winners have their names inscribed on the Johnny Paulk Cup.

What is one of your favorite restaurants in the Golden Isles to take visitors, and why? Describe your day entertaining house guests in town. How do you show off our area? Take us from sun up to sun down. Begin the day watching the sun rise on the beach; have a cup of Starbucks and awesome homemade sticky buns on the porch at CafĂŠ Solterra at the Club Hotel; walk off the carbs in the beautiful historic district, or ride a few of Jekyllâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 23 miles of bike paths; go over the bridge â&#x20AC;&#x153;into townâ&#x20AC;? for lunch at Indigo Coastal Shanty downtown; buzz into Market on Newcastle to see whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s new; cross Torras Causeway for a driving tour of St. Simons Island; stop at Fuse for frozen yogurt; drive north for a quick peek at Darien and its historic waterfront; back to Jekyll for happy hour on the beach, or to Rah Bar for drinks, seafood and sunset; then after dark, a Red Bug safari to gaze at wildlife (NOT wild life).

Without a doubt, Crane Cottage of the Jekyll Island Club Hotelâ&#x20AC;Ś history, ambiance, consistently excellent fare, and top-notch service.

Where is the best spot to have your photo taken in the Golden Isles? Driftwood Beach.

WHERE DAWG FANS LOVE TO WATCH THE GAME. Experience the sport the way UGA fans LOVE it â&#x20AC;&#x201D; in the Dawg House. See some of golfâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s biggest names play on one of the most stunning golf courses in the country. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t miss your chance to feel the LOVE. Buy your tickets today.

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12 â&#x20AC;˘ Bulldawg Illustrated

Compiled by Cheri Leavy


BULLDAWGS GUIDE TO THE GOLDEN ISLES Tips to Enjoy the Coast With Lexie Love, UGA Graduate Tournament Coordinator McGladrey Classic St. Simons Island (pictured with Uga in the Dawg House at the tourney) When were you at UGA and what do you love about Athens and UGA? I transferred to UGA from Bama my junior year, and graduated three years later in 2011. I love that Athens really has the best of both worlds, it feels like a small town but you get the perks of a big city with its amazing music, restaurants and downtown shopping. I also just love the history there, my grandfather went to UGA and we grew up going to football games with him; the town itself holds a lot of great memories for me. Tell us why your hometown of St. Simons Island is so special. I love everything about this Island, the people the beach the beautiful river and marsh views. I also love the relaxed feel here, I lived in Dallas for about a year and when I got back it was nice to just slow down and appreciate the beauty around me. Where is the best spot to have your photo taken in the Golden Isles? I may be partial, because I have a great view from my office, but the Avenue of the Oaks is a great backdrop for photos. What do you order at Southern Soul Barbecue? I usually order the weekday worker, unless they have the smoked bologna special! Share a little about your involvement in the upcoming McGladrey Classic November 4-10. Tell us about the golf tournament and events surrounding it. We all work as a team to make The McGladrey Classic great each year, but my main focus is the Volunteer Program, it takes almost 1200 volunteers to make the tournament possible, we could not do it without them! This year, like the past, we will have a lot going on during tournament week. For the first time, we will be open to the public at no charge on Monday, November 4th for Community Day, this will give folks the chance to watch our Monday Pro-Am. We also hold Youth Day on Monday, from 2-4 with tons of great activities for kids. We are thrilled that Toby Keith will be here performing on Wednesday night! Thursday-Sunday, tournament rounds start! Tickets can be purchased through our website at www.mcgladreyclassic.com Compiled by Cheri Leavy

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www.bulldawgillustrated.com â&#x20AC;˘ 15


A look at the Tigers from New Orleans New Orleans radio personality Scott Alexander, an old friend and SEC veteran, gives us his take on Saturdayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s clash of titans. Scott played basketball for Dale Brown at LSU, has been a television producer, an agent, and currently is the most popular talk show host in the Big Easy. Talk about the job that LSU â&#x20AC;&#x201C; with Saban and Miles both â&#x20AC;&#x201C; has done recruiting the state of Louisiana and how that has keyed the programâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s great success.

Before Nick Saban took the LSU coaching job in 2000, the Tiger faithful watched future superstars Marshall Faulk, Warrick Dunn, Ed Reed, Reggie Wayne, Peyton & Eli Manning among many others continue to leave the state for greener collegiate pastures. That all changed when St. Nick arrived to the Baton Rouge campus. Much like Mark Richt at Georgia, Saban made it clear that he was putting up a fence around the state of Louisiana. And three years later the Tigers won their first National Championship in 45 years featuring a dominant defense with homegrown talent such as Laron Landry, Corey Webster, Marcus Spears, Marquise Hill and Craig Steltz. The offense on that Tiger squad also featured several future NFL stars from the Pelican State including receivers Michael Clayton & Devery Henderson and All-Pro offensive lineman Andrew Whitworth. When Saban left for the NFL following the 2004 season, Les Miles picked up the recruiting blueprint and followed it perfectly. Although it's easy to make fun of the Madhatter's in-game decisions, interview gaffes & general bumbling behavior, one cannot argue with LSU's record. The Tigers have the most wins of any BCS Conference school over the last dozen years. Only Boise State has more wins in Division-1 football Do the LSU faithful have love/head-scratching relationship with Miles?

Yes of course! The love/head scratching relationship between Les Miles and the LSU fans is nothing short of legendary in Baton Rouge. Even though Miles has the best winning percentage of any coach in school history, there are STILL many among the faithful who believe he hasn't done enough and want him gone. It's incredible. Who do you think will play in the SEC Championship Game?

After winning three of the past four national championships (but ironically only two SEC championships in that span), it's hard to pick against the Alabama Crimson Tide. LSU has split the last six meetings against the Tide, so the tilt in Tuscaloosa will likely tell the tale in the West. In the East, it looks like the Georgia Bulldogs for the 3rd straight year especially if they get by Florida in the World's Largest Cocktail Party. Oh, the NCAA said I'm not supposed to say that anymore.

Who do you think plays for the national title?

Georgia and Oregon What non-SEC team has impressed you the most so far this year?

Oregon has easily been the most impressive non-SEC team but they will have their hands full with the Stanford Cardinal and a much improved PAC 12 Conference. What is your take on Georgia?

Considering that the Bulldogs have the most complete running back in the country, a quarterback who is about to rewrite the SEC record books, and top ten recruiting classes every year, I would say that they are pretty darn good. And besides that, the Todd Gurley/Aaron Murray show is one of the most entertaining in the country. These Dawgs have a real shot at the 2013 National Championship...and I wouldn't bet against them. Are there any areas that stand out to you that will decide the game?

The LSU-Georgia game has all the makings of a classic. Zack Mettenberger comes back to the school where it all began for him. After a rough first year as LSU's starting quarterback, Mettenberger has emerged under the tutelage of new Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron as one of the top signal callers in the SEC. His play will be absolutely pivotal if the Tigers expect to have a chance to win. Stopping Todd Gurley will be the key for the Tigers. Everyone knows that Murray will likely get his normal 300 yards through the air, but if the Tigers can slow Gurley they might have a shot. Any chance of a rematch in Atlanta or is the schedule too tough for both the rest of the way?

I think there is a reasonable chance for a rematch in Atlanta. Of course, LSU would have to get by the Tide in Tuscaloosa, but if you look at the recent history of the two teams, that hasn't been much of a problem for the Tigers. And with Texas A&M and Florida coming to Death Valley, there's always a chance. If Georgia were to lose, the road to Atlanta for the Dawgs is still right in front of them. Losing to a team from the West Division is always advantageous because if the Bulldogs can win the rest of their SEC games, they will be in Atlanta. And with Florida as the remaining threat on the schedule, once again, I like the Dawgs chances. What are some past Georgia/LSU games that stand out to you?

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There are so many great UGA-LSU games that stand out to me, but the first that always comes to mind was my favorite college road trip of all time in 1987. Since that sojourn, I've told everyone who'd listen that Athens, GA is the best college town in America...hands down. Perhaps it didn't hurt that after a little late game magic with LSU quarterback Tommy Hodson pulling a rabbit out of his helmet and Georgia wide receiver John Thomas missing an easy game winning touchdown catch, LSU escaped with a lucky 26-23 victory. The four Bulldog-Tiger games played between 2003 and 2005 resulting in a 2-2 split along with deciding a couple SEC Championships were certainly memorable for both fan bases, but that classic in the late 80s will always be my most memorable. â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Jeff Dantzler

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Roaring Tigers #3 Odell Beckham Jr., WR/PR/KR 6-0, 193 Jr. New Orleans, La. (Newman H.S.)

Talk about bloodlines, one of the most electric athletes in college football, was bound for greatness at LSU from Day One. His father Odell Beckham Sr. played running back for the Tigers from 1989 – 1992. His mother, the former Heather Van Norman, was a part of five national track championship teams (Indoor and Outdoor), won three individual NCAA titles and was a six-time All-American at LSU. Surprise, surprise, Junior is a DUDE! Last season, he turned LSU’s thrilling comeback victory over Ole Miss with a game-tying, fourth quarter 89-yard punt return for a touchdown that certainly made Billy Cannon himself proud. His 743 receiving yards were tops on the team a year ago, and 43 catches ranked second. The SEC’s most dangerous return man has now fully blossomed as a receiver, meaning big trouble for opposing defenses. Beckham is averaging over 100 yards per game through the air, and this fleet star is a favorite deep target of quarterback Zach Mettenberger. The “Computer Buster” returned a missed field goal 109 yards for a touchdown against UAB. The NCAA statistics can’t go beyond 100 yards and there was no category for field goal return touchdowns.

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#9 Ego Ferguson, DL 6-3, 309 Jr. Mims, Fla. (Hargrave Military Academy)

When Nick Saban took the job in Baton Rouge in 2000, he began signing great defensive linemen. Les Miles has kept it up. Under the latter’s watch, there was Glenn Dorsey, then Rickey Jean-Francois, then Drake Nevis, then Barkavious Mingo and now there is Ego Ferguson. He is a single – digit beast. And with that name, was there any doubt this big-time recruit would be a big-time player. Ferguson and Anthony Johnson are tremendous, and a big reason that LSU lost two firstround picks off the D-Line from last season and still have the best D-Line in the SEC. He is the team’s leading tackler. A defensive lineman. That is doing work. Ferguson was the SEC Defensive Player-of-the-Week in the Tigers rout of Kent State, as he racked up 8.5 tackles and a sack for a 15-yard loss. He is powerful, strong and quick. Georgia’s offensive line will have its toughest test of the season thus far – yes, even more difficult than the JaDaveon Clowney-led South Carolina front. Just like Georgia did with Clowney, the Bulldogs must locate Ferguson on every play. #8 Zach Mettenberger, QB 6-5, 235 Sr. Watkinsville, Ga. (Oconee County H.S.)

Things were not going great for Mettenberger in his first season as LSU’s starting quarterback last season. He began his career at Georgia – where his mother Tammy works in the football office – and was dismissed from the team. Mettenberger then played for Butler Community College and signed with LSU prior to the 2011 season, when he was a back-up to Jarrett Lee and Jordan Jefferson. Then in November of last season, things began clicking for him. He played very well in the Tigers unforgettable 21-17 loss to Alabama in Baton Rouge. From then on, he was a big plus behind center. Now with Cam Cameron running the offense and coaching the quarterbacks, Mettenberger is truly flourishing. He is the type of quarterback with the tools that coaches drool over. He is big and strong with a cannon of an arm. Now under Cameron’s tutelage, and with the strong close to last season to build on, he has greatly improved his accuracy and touch. Mettenberger’s statistics through the first part of the season rival any of the other more high profile quarterbacks in the Southeastern Conference. You can bet there will be some nerves and funny feelings coming back home, and you can also bet there is no game he would rather win. — Jeff Dantzler

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Tigers in a thumbnail : Coming off last season's 10-3 record (6-2 SEC), the Tigers of Les Miles returned some seven offensive starters but just three defensive regulars from a unit that lost 10 players who declared early for the NFL draft. But as they venture between the hedges this Saturday, the Bayou Bengals have roared off to a perfect 4-0 start and are 1-0 in the SEC after toppling Auburn 35-21 this past Saturday night in Baton Rouge. The first three victories came over TCU (37-27), UAB (56-17) and Kent State (45-13).

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A look at the LSU offense: With their strong nucleus back, the Tigers have plenty of weapons on offense.

Ex-Georgia Bulldog and Oconee County native Zach Mettenberger (6-5, 230) has gotten his senior season at LSU off to a splendid start, having thrown for 1,026 yards and 10 touchdowns in the four outings to date. with just one interception. Junior Odell Beckham, Jr. (6-0, 187) is an explosive football player who can punish an opponent in many ways, with his pass catching (20 for 389 yards) and kick returning. In the romp over UAB, he had an incredible 331 multi-purpose yards and tallied four touchdowns on three pass receptions and a 100-yard return of a missed field goal. Junior Jarvis Landry (6-1, 195) is LSU's leading receiver with 24 catches for 364 yards and six touchdowns. After pounding Auburn for a career-high 184 yards (152 in first half) and three touchdowns, bruising sophomore Jeremy Hill (6-2-235) leads the Tigers in rushing with 351 yards on 42 carries, an 8.4 yards-per-carry average and 117 yards per game, since rejoining the lineup following off-the-field trouble. Junior Terrence Magee (59, 212) follows with 219 yards and a 7.6 average and senior tailback Alfred Blue (6-2, 220) and senior fullback J.C. Copeland (6-1, 272) also present a "load" for opposing defenses to handle. Paving the way up front are returning offensive linemen La'el Collins, Trai Turner and Vadal Alexander. A look at the LSU defense: As mentioned, the Tigers were jolted hard on this side of the ball by early exits

to the National Football League. But LSU does have three solid starters back in senior linebacker Lamin Barrow (6-2, 232), senior strong safety Craig Loston (6-2, 205) and sophomore cornerback Jalen Mills (6-0, 185). And the Tigers also have a formidable run stuffer and pass rusher in junior defensive tackle Anthony Johnson (6-3, 304). Barrow is the team's leading tackler after the four games with 22 stops while junior tackle Ego Ferguson (6-3, 308) and sophomore DB Micah Eugene (5-11, 190) follow closely with 21 tackles each. What Tigers head coach Les Miles says: "We took such a strong lead initially (21-0 at half over Auburn), but I just didn’t like how we finished. We can play better, and we need to control these games. I see a lot of schools in this conference having difficult games. Frontward, we need to take care of our business and do that, and we’ll be pretty good. We’re undefeated and looking forward to the next one against Georgia. I can tell you, this football team will enjoy the competition. It'll be a great challenge, looking forward to it." Game Prediction : In our June preview issue, I said that the Bulldogs would handle the Tigers by 38-24

between the hallowed hedges. The way unbeaten LSU has played to date, that margin now looks way too much. Assuming Georgia will ignite the Todd Gurley-led running game again this week, I'll stick with the Dogs but just by a Marshall Morgan field goal, say 31-28. — Murray Poole

ZZZDWKHQVKHDOWKRUJ www.bulldawgillustrated.com • 17


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intheirshoesathens.org intheirsho oesathenss.org 18 • Bulldawg Illustrated

Claude McBride was a ‘Dog. He was also a ‘Dawg, which means that he spanned several eras— from Wallace Butts to Vince Dooley primarily, although he continued as the Bulldogs’ team chaplain until 2000. He was a versatile man who touched many lives. He was a minister, a journalist and a columnist, a comedian and a cheerleader. He was an artist and a humanitarian. He was a man of good works and good deeds. He reached out to others. He was a man of goodwill. He was his brother’s keeper. When he arrived on campus in 1950, he was already a rabid football fan. He became a member of the Redcoat Band and the Debate Club. For three years, he was a varsity cheerleader while enrolled in the Henry Grady School of Journalism, graduating in 1954. It didn’t matter what he was doing, whatever his assignment, Georgia was always on his mind. When he served in the pulpit for the Milledge Avenue Baptist Church for many years, seldom did a Sunday go by without some commentary on the Bulldogs. If the Bulldogs lost the previous Saturday, his was an attitude of promise. In Claude’s life, he always felt that Georgia would “get ‘em next time.” With any victory, he was over the top when it came to celebrating. One of his pleasurable affiliations was to provide the invocation to the meetings of the Touchdown Club of Athens. If the Almighty had any doubts about preferential rooting interests, all He had to do was tune into Claude’s preachments. He was always asking for support from above. After all, Claude was not only one of God’s servants, he was a Bulldog. He felt no reluctance to ask for divine intervention for his favorite team. Some of his invocations had the Touchdown Club members splitting their sides with laughter as he sounded forth on behalf of his favorite team. He was always praying for Georgia to win. “Let the Big Dawg Eat one more time,” he might say. He was not opposed to castigating the name of rival coaches for whom he had earthly antipathy. “Like that Evil Genius wearing them Gamecock feathers, coming over here and trying to spoil our season.” Claude was such a devoted fan that he could not enjoy his supper after a game if things did not go well on Saturday wherever the Bulldogs played. His rabidity, however, had class. He didn’t really hate Steve Spurrier. He just liked to poke fun at the ole ball coach and stir up the feelings of his Bulldog friends. Claude was not capable of hating anybody. He had a generous smile and a friendly heart that welcomed one and an all with open arms. One of the signature accom-

plishments, mentioned in his obituary, was that he was a member of the Pulitzer Prize winning team at the Columbus Ledger which braved real threats with coverage of the corrupt government in Phoenix City, Alabama. A Pulitzer is high honor, indeed, but Claude would never bring it up in conversation. You had to draw his recollections out of him and he reacted with an “Aw Shucks,” disclaimer. The lead reporter of the team was Ray Jenkins who went on to become the editorial page editor of the Baltimore Sun and was a member of press staff of the Carter White House. Claude was not interested in tracking down criminals in print and bringing them to justice. He loved his fellow man and wanted to find a way to make them see the importance of the golden rule. He wanted to make friends and gather them into his circle of goodwill like a hen gathering her chicks under her wing. When he left Milledge Avenue Baptist to join the staff of the University of Georgia Alumni Society, Claude was never more in his element. In his alumni role, he could spread the word of all things Bulldog all across the state. He became a Johnny Appleseed in red and black, always sowing the seeds of love of alma mater and bringing good tidings of the University throughout the hinterlands. Nothing Claude enjoyed more than for some distant, rural community inviting him to speak to a small group of Bulldogs. It didn’t matter how far he had to drive and how small the gathering would be—Claude was always eager and willing to fulfill every request involving the University of Georgia. One of the events Claude cherished was homecoming when the Redcoat Alumni got to perform on the field at halftime. The alumni cheerleaders were invited back, too, and there was Claude in his cheerleader sweater with the big red “G.” He wore that “G” proudly. The only one bigger was the one on his heart.


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JD’s 5 keys to victory photo by Rob Saye

1.

Handle the Tigers Defensive Front – It all starts up front in the trenches. In the Bulldogs 41-30 victory over South Carolina, Georgia handled the Gamecocks stellar defensive front. This is an even better bunch. LSU lost a pair of first round draft choices and three starters overall off the defensive line. The Tigers haven’t missed a beat. Led by Ego Ferguson and Anthony Johnson, LSU’s defensive front gets the push, makes stops, forces penalties and creates turnovers. Georgia’s offensive line struggled in the opener at Clemson but got well vs. South Carolina. The growth and improvement of the unit must continue or the Bulldogs offense is going to have a tough time.

2. Avoid the Disaster Turnover – Most of Georgia’s disaster plays have come in straight dropback situations. In the win over South Carolina, the Bulldogs led with Todd Gurley and a dynamite run-

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ning back. Aaron Murray was outstanding, and hit big plays on the move. Getting Murray rolling out by design, moving that pocket, maximizes what he can do. Murray is a good runner and throws well on the move. Against Clemson, the Bulldogs lost the turnover battle, and it was a big reason Georgia lost the game. The Dogs won the turnover battle against South Carolina and won the game. Now comes a third top ten team in four games. A big factor in LSU’s tremendous success through the years has been the ability to score non-offensive touchdowns. Murray can’t hang throws and the Bulldog ball-carriers must protect the football. If not, it’s the wounded baby Zebra with a pack of hungry Lions on the Discovery Channel.

3. Rattle Mettenberger – LSU has a strong offensive line as usual. The Tigers have their usual stable of big, strong, tough, powerful backs who can grind it out and break the long one. There is Odell Beckham, one of the fastest players in the league, and his wide receiver Jarvis Landry. Now the Tigers have the big-armed, confident quarterback they’ve been looking for. Zach Mettenberger is one of the most improved signal callers in the game. Georgia must get to him. Georgia must get pressure and get Mettenberger out of his comfort zone. He’ll certainly have a variety of emotions coming back home. Georgia must not let him feel welcome and confident in the pocket, or that young secondary is in big, big trouble.

4.

Tackle and Hit – Georgia’s defense is athletic. The effort and hustle has been there. But the Bulldogs have to make that next step. Now is the time. If this is a championship caliber season, this is a game Georgia has to have. To do this, the defense has to progress, and do so with urgency. LSU’s backs specialize in ripping through arm tackles. The Bulldogs must hit, wrap up and bring down the Tigers standout runners. And missing a tackle with Beckham or Landry in the secondary means a long and quick touchdown for the Tigers. Again, it starts in the trenches. Georgia’s defensive line can’t get pushed around. The Bulldogs must do the pushing and take the fight to LSU.

5

. Beware Beckham – This is a long touchdown making stalwart. Odell Beckham Jr. is an offensive version of the “Honey Badger.” He has scored touchdowns on plays of over 50 yards via receiving, punt returns and a missed field goal return that went 109. Georgia has done a good job on punt and kickoff coverage. But the Bulldogs have given up too many big plays in the passing game. LSU will try and get Beckham the ball deep, on receiver screens and of course in the return game. He is the definitive game-changer. It starts with pressure of course, but the Bulldogs secondary must be on their “A-game.” And when it comes to coverage, maintain lane discipline and wrap up. Or he is gone. — Jeff Dantzler

Butler’s players of the game Kevin Butler, former University of Georgia legendary kicker and a member of the Georgia radio broadcast team, will each week during the 2013 football season select his offensive, defensive and special teams players of the week for Bulldawg Illustrated. Here are Butler’s selections and reasons why for the Bulldogs’ 45-21 win over North Texas Saturday. OFFENSE – Freshman receiver Reggie Davis, whose

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first catch as a Bulldog was a 98-yard touchdown pass from Aaron Murray, the longest offensive play in Georgia history. It was also Murray's 100th touchdown pass of his career. Davis had two catches on the day, for a total of 134 yards. “A tremendous game from a freshman weapon," said Butler. "His 98-yard catch was the first of his college career and we should expect a lot more from the speedy receiver. With the loss of Malcolm Mitchell, Reggie's breakout game comes at the perfect time to put Georgia's opponents on notice that Aaron Murray has yet another great weapon." Freshman outside linebacker Leonard Floyd, who registered the first two quarterback sacks of what is expected to be a promising Georgia career and finished with six total tackles against the Mean Green. "Two sacks by Leonard gives us yet another athletic force that complements Jordan Jenkins and Garrison Smith as a growing and maturing defense learns how to put pressure on the opposing quarterback," said Butler. "Look for him to make some noise against LSU this week."

DEFENSE –

SPECIAL TEAMS – On an afternoon where the Bull-

dogs had several costly miscues on their special teams, sophomore punter Collin Barber enjoyed an outstanding game as he punted five times for a

20 • Bulldawg Illustrated

photo by Rob Saye

49.8 average including one 61-yard kick. “Collin has a tremendously strong leg with a real good hang time and the two punts he had inside the 10, those gave the defense a great opportunity to turn around and give our offense a chance to put more points on the board," said Butler. "Collin's performance continues to get consistently better and hopefully the Georgia coaching staff can focus on the other concerns of specialty teams, which are many. And Collin Barber is our one bright spot of the special teams' play." — Murray Poole


BI

Rob Sherrell : Farming it Out - former Dog, Kyle Farmer

You grew up in Atlanta and spent the last four years in Athens. You were recently drafted by the Dodgers. Now you're living in Utah playing for the Odgen Raptors. Can you compare life in Ogden with Atlanta and the Classic City?

baseball games nor had any idea what was ever going on with the team. If you only count the run of the mill injuries and the talent we lost in the draft, we were very unlucky to say the least. Throw in two pivotal players breaking their necks and you've got a dire situation well outside the parameters of athletics. Can you talk about what Coach Perno meant to you?

It's a lot different. Like you said before, Athens is the best place in the world for anybody in particular. The community's awesome. The fan base is awesome. The town is unbelievable. Out west is a lot different. We don't have many fans here though we occasionally draw a good crowd. I don't have a car so I walk to the field everyday. It's all business. I'm here to play baseball and hopefully make it up to the next level.

I'll go back to high school. I was at a baseball camp at Georgia. The first person that came up to talk to me was Coach Perno. He told me I had a great opportunity at UGA. He struck me as kind of a father figure. My dad, who played at Ole Miss, told me to go to the place that I wanted. So when it came to the first day that coaches could call you, Coach Perno called me at 8 a.m. that morning. He was the first call I got. Coach Perno is one of the greatest guys I'll ever play for. He is a player's coach and he was put in a very tough situation with Chance and JT. Chance was my roommate all four years and I've played JT since I was 12. No coach should ever have to deal with that. It changes your mentality about life. I mean two guys you recruited are paralyzed. There were some times we broke down pretty deep. We'd sit in the dugout talking for hours about it when no one else was there.

One great thing about Athens is the eye candy. How do they compare to the lovely ladies of Ogden? Is there a pinup calendar or anything else we can reference?

Well you know I was lucky to find a very beautiful girl named Katie Daniel. I started dating her my sophomore year. But Athens does not run short on the eye candy. But I was searching for a good one and I think I found one. Like I said before, I have to have blinders on because I'm here for one reason and that's to play baseball. But there really aren't as many good-looking girls out here as there are in Athens. So I guess that means you don't have to carry around an extra bat to beat away the minor league groupies ala Bull Durham?

Yeah, a little bit. But I love calling a game. I love being part of the action. When I was a shortstop at Georgia, I would pretty much call the game in my head. So I'm kind of used to that.

You know I kind of thought that was going be the case. I watched Bull Durham and you know my dad played in the minors. But I've not had to beat them away with the bat yet. Maybe it's going to happen at the next level.

When you're back there do you occasionally go little league on the hitter and give him any heckling like "Betty Crocker makes a better batter than you"?

Over the last 11 or 12 years, UGA has had three All-American shortstops, Jeff Keppinger, Gordon Beckham, and yourself. How does it feel to be part of such a long line of greatness at the position?

I have a lot of respect for Gordon and Jeff Keppinger. I watched them a lot and I love the way they play. I heard many great stories about both of those players. But you know coming in as a freshmen, I wanted to kind of create my own stories. They were definitely big shoes to fill, but I wanted to leave my own legacy. They both went to the college world series and obviously I wish I would've had the chance to do that, but I'm very humble to be considered in the their category. They're both playing in the majors right now. They're playing in the infield and I'm now behind the plate. Hopefully, I'll get a chance to play against them one day and talk to them again. Many people may not know you're now catching. And the crazy thing is this wasn't some nutty experiment some loose cannon GM came up with. Several teams worked you out there and felt this was your best position. I know former major league catcher and one-time Atlanta Brave Damon Berryhill is your manager. Can you elaborate on how much of an asset your coach is when you're trying to learn an entirely new position that your coach was successful in at the big league level?

Yeah, he's a great coach. He's a player’s coach. He didn't think I really had a clue about catching. Then he saw me catch and call a game and the coaches were like, "Wow! You don't look like a shortstop. You look like a catcher". I was very surprised about that because I felt like I had no idea what I was doing. He gives me a lot of pointers and we talk about Atlanta a lot. He loves to fish as I do. So he's given me an opportunity to play by putting me out there every other game. I mean he could have me in the bullpen catching pitchers all day. So I'm very thankful for that. When you're calling a game and a coach comes out and wants to know if the pitcher has any gas left in the tank, does the pitcher say to the coach, "Don't ask him! He doesn't know what the heck he's doing"? Do you get any of that?

‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡

No, but it is pretty funny because I'm playing against some guys I played against in college. Last time I played against Jacob Morris that went to Arkansas. He came up to the plate and was like "What in the world are you doing behind the plate?". I told him he was asking the wrong person. Then I saw another guy, Zane Evans, I played against him all my life. When he comes up, I always tell him here comes the curve ball when a fast ball is coming. Well once you learn all you can from Berryhill and make it to the big leagues, LA will be perfect for you since you're already a movie star. You were the high school quarterback in a little movie called The Blind Side. How was that experience?

I was. I was at a buddy's house one night and I got a call from a kid who went to the high school where they were filming the Blind Side. He was like "We need a QB that knows what he's doing". And I had played QB at Marist. I was like sure I'll do it and he told me to be there at 5:30 in the a.m. I thought Oh Boy! So I get up and headed to the field. I'm in full pads, they give me a playbook, and tell me to run the plays. So I got hit probably 20 times in a row on the same play. I've got a lot of respect for actors and actresses now because it takes a lot of patience, especially in a football movie. It is kind of funny because they were talking about it in the press box one game here in Ogden and all of the players came up asked me about it. They didn't believe it until I showed them the YouTube clip. They thought it was pretty funny. So yeah, LA would be a great fit for me. I know your favorite place to eat in Atlanta is The Big Easy Grill. What's your favorite place in Ogden?

It's a place called Icky's. It's like a little sports bar. My host dad is the general manager there. So I go there all the time and get some food. He hooks me up with a good price and it's a lot of fun. They've got all kinds of food. But you can't beat the Big Easy though. UGA lost a great coach this year when Coach Perno was fired. It was sort of amusing to hear some of the voices that wanted him gone the most were people that never went to

When you look at our team this year, you hear a lot about the offense. However, you need defense to win in the SEC. If you had to name one guy on defense to lead this team and be the playmaker, who would it be?

I'm a big Damian Swann fan. He grew up in Atlanta and grew up playing baseball. He wanted to come to Georgia to play baseball. I actually helped recruit Damian. He came to Athens and one of our assistant coaches said we needed to show him around. So we drove him around campus with his family. He's a great athlete. He can fly around that football field. I always imitate him when he makes an interception. That pumps me up. He flies around, he hits, he's mean, and he's also smart. Sticking with the defense and talking to you as a very successful high school QB, which level do you see as our biggest weakness?

Everything starts with the D Line. I think those guys are going to have to push through some tough times. But we also lost Jarvis Jones. So the linebackers took a big hit there. The defense has some work to do. We just have to see how they respond to adversity. But I think the defensive line is the most vulnerable right now. Go ahead and tell me how you see the Dawgs ending the regular season and who they'll play in which bowl?

I'm going to say they'll end up ranked second and play Ohio St for the National Championship. Who's gonna win that one?

Who do you think? It ain't Ohio St. In 2012, you played on Team USA's baseball team. That's something your dad also did. How special is that to have in common with him?

I mean my dad has probably thrown me about five million baseballs in batting practice. He's the one that's gotten me better and he's coached me my entire life. I give all the credit to him and he taught me all I know. He went to Ole Miss, he played for Team USA, and he played minor league baseball with the Triple A Braves. We talk about it all the time. When I played for Team USA, he was ecstatic. He wants what's best for me. He's come out to Ogden twice to see me play. He loves to watch me play and compete. So I always have someone to fall back on if I have any questions about baseball or life in general.

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Jeff Dantzler’s 2013 rankings

2013 Dawgs roster

Top 10 Non-SEC - This past weekend did not offer a cornucopia of showdowns on the college football sched-

ule. Stanford’s win over Arizona State was the lone top 25 vs. top 25 match-up. It’s a different story this week. Along with the two big SEC showdowns (see below), Ohio State locks up with Wisconsin and Notre Dame hosts Oklahoma. You know the Sooners want revenge from last year. 1. Oregon – The Ducks haven’t missed a beat in 2013, averaging over 60 points per game, and millions of plays and yards. Oregon was off this past week, and now jumps into PAC-12 play. Is Stanford the only team that can bat them? 2. Clemson – The Tigers opened Atlantic Coast Conference play with a pedestrian 26-14 win over North Carolina State. Tajh Boyd missed a lot of open looks, but the Clemson defense looked strong – except on that final ‘Pack drive that had a lot of folks squirming. 3. Stanford – The Cardinal didn’t exactly set the world on fire in their first two wins over San Jose State and Army. But David Shaw had his team ready for the PAC-12 opener in the lone top 25 vs. top 25 match-up, racing to a 29-0 lead over Arizona State and winning by two touchdowns. Up next is Washington State in Pullman. 4. Florida State – Jameis Winston is a potential future Heisman Trophy winner. The Seminoles have played a weak schedule, but have definitely passed the eyeball test. That big battle with Clemson in Tiger Town is looming. 5. Ohio State – Kenny Guiton, in for injured Braxton Miller at quarterback, threw six touchdown passes in the first half in a 76-0 rout of Florida A&M. More than one Buckeye fan may be saying that Miller shouldn’t be a sure thing to take back over under center. 6. Oklahoma State – After sweating out a 59-3 win over Lamar, the Cowboys took this past Saturday off to get ready for Big XII play. Oklahoma State can score, and the Cowboys seem to be better on defense. West Virginia looks pretty bad, so the ‘Pokes should roll in Morgantown. 7. Washington – The Huskies cranked out a blowout victory 56-0 over Idaho and now Arizona comes to town for the PAC-12 opener. Steve Sarkisian is getting this sleeping giant of a program back on track. 8. Louisville – Teddy Bridgewater had a tremendous statistical day and is a guy who is mentioned in the Heisman and potential top five pick talk. Michael Dyer, the former Auburn star, is a big part of a strong running attack to compliment Teddy B. 9. Miami – In a meeting of schools that play in two of my favorite cities, the Hurricanes blew away overmatched Savannah State 77-7. Miami still is not all the way back, but Al Golden is building something in Coral Gables. 10. Oklahoma – Blake Bell is more than just the “Bell-Dozer.” He has shown he can throw the football as well. Oklahoma may be better than a lot of prognosticators thought. It looks like the Sooners and Cowboys are the two best in the Big XII. SEC 1-14 - It was a week where games that used to mean everything both had 17-point lines. LSU beat Auburn by 14 and Florida beat Tennessee by 14. Things get dialed back up this week, as LSU goes to Georgia in a top ten vs. top ten show-down and Ole Miss visits Alabama. Could the Rebels possibly do it again, and pull off another road upset over college footballroyalty? 1. LSU – The Fightin’ Tigers look like the best team in the Southeastern Conference. LSU jumped out on Auburn 21-0 and then held on in the rain for a 35-21 win. Now comes one of those mega-showdowns with the Dogs in Athens. 2. Alabama – As is almost always the case with Nick Saban’s Tide, after a monster win, they underwhelm against a lesser opponent. This will make it easy to get their attention for the big showdown with Ole Miss Saturday on the capstone. 3. Texas A&M – The Aggies rolled past SMU, as Johnny Manziel had another fantastic performance. The schedule sets up nicely for Texas A&M, but that defense has to get a lot better. Arkansas may be able to hang around for a bit, but the Aggies are just too explosive. 4. Ole Miss – The open date came at a great time for the Rebels. Even though Texas is down, for Ole Miss to win in Austin is signature. Now comes the biggest challenge – Bama in Tuscaloosa. Ole Miss’s offense gave Bama some real problems last year. 5. Georgia – The Bulldogs have a juggernaut coming to town Saturday, as red hot LSU visits Sanford Stadium. Georgia’s special teams was a disaster against North Texas. The Dogs will have to put it all together to topple the Tigers. 6. South Carolina – It’s a tricky spot for the Gamecocks, as they play Central Florida in Orlando in high noon. Steve Spurrier will work extra to make sure his boys are ready. Then Kentucky comes to Columbia as SEC play hits full stride. 7. Florida – The Gators bounced back from the loss to Miami and an open date with a 14point win over Tennessee in the swamp. Florida lost Jeff Driskel for the year with a broken leg. Tyler Murphy did a good job out of the bullpen. The Gators visit Kentucky Saturday. 8. Auburn – It was looking ugly for Auburn down in Death Valley. It was rocking in Baton Rouge, as LSU raced to a 21-0 lead. But Auburn didn’t quit. The War Eagle Tigers hung around, and fell by 14. 9. Missouri – The Tigers could be one of the most improved teams in the SEC. They have played a relatively light schedule to date, but Mizzou is chalking up wins, including a 45-28 win at Indiana. The Tigers should make it 4-0 Saturday against Arkansas State. 10. Arkansas – The Hogs perfect season was spoiled by a 28-24 loss at Rutgers. Alex Collins is an outstanding freshman tailback, and they’ll have to lean on him against Texas A&M and Johnny Football this Saturday. 11. Vanderbilt – The Commodores moved to 2-2 with a 24-7 win over UMass at the Patriots Stadium in Foxboro. Vandy should make it 3-2 on the year, as UAB comes to call. That season-opening loss to Ole Miss still stings. 12. Mississippi State – After a crushing loss at Auburn, Mississippi State rolled past Troy to make it 2-2 on the year. The Maroon Bulldogs are off this week then head to Baton Rouge. MSU may have found an answer at quarterback. 13. Tennessee – Reality has set in on Tennessee. The Volunteers were ambushed in Oregon, then came back across country to take on the Gators. It was a good start, but turned into yet another double digit loss. The Vols have an outstanding offensive line. 14. Kentucky – The Wildcats host Florida Saturday. Kentucky just doesn’t beat Florida. The ‘Cats had this past Saturday off after hanging around against rival Louisville. Kentucky does have some juice at tailback.

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FLK CB QB CB TB CB TB CB SE CB QB CB LB FLK CB SE QB CB QB FS SS QB PK QB TB QB DL FLK CB SE CB TB DB RB SS WR TB CB FS SS TE FLK SE FS WR FLK ILB CB FLK P OLB OLB RB FB SS TB CB SE FLK ILB RB SS OLB TE LB RS ILB OLB TE ILB FB ILB DE FB FB OLB SN LB ILB ILB DE OL DE DL DE OLB OG SN C OT OG OT C OL OG SN OG OT OT OG OL OT OT OL OG OG TE WR SE TE LB TE TE SE TE DE TE OLB TE P DE PK N PK RS N DL P

FR SO JR FR SO FR SO JR JR FR SR SR FR RS FR FR SR RS FR JR SR SR SR FR SO JR FR RS SO FR SR RS SO JR JR SR FR FR SR JR SR JR JR SO SO JR SR FR FR SR JR JR JR SO RS FR SR FR SR RS FR JR RS SO RS FR RS FR FR RS FR JR JR RS FR FR SO RS FR SR SR FR SR JR JR JR SO RS FR RS SO FR JR JR SR FR SR FR RS SO SO FR JR JR RS SO SR RS SO RS SO FR SR FR FR SO SR RS FR FR JR RS SO FR JR JR SR FR JR RS SO FR SR FR RS SO RS SO JR SR SO RS FR SR SO SO RS SO RS FR FR JR FR JR

6-0 5-11 6-3 6-1 6-1 6-1 5-11 5-11 5-10 5-10 6-4 5-11 6-3 6-2 5-11 6-1 6-3 6-2 6-1 5-10 5-10 6-3 6-3 6-3 5-9 6-2 6-5 5-10 6-0 6-5 6-1 5-6 6-0 5-11 6-1 6-0 5-10 5-11 6-1 6-5 6-5 6-1 6-0 6-0 6-2 6-3 6-0 6-0 6-3 6-2 6-3 6-3 6-0 6-1 5-10 5-9 6-0 6-3 6-1 6-1 6-0 6-2 6-3 6-4 6-0 5-11 6-2 6-6 6-2 6-1 5-10 6-0 6-5 5-10 6-2 6-3 6-3 6-2 6-2 6-2 6-3 6-3 6-3 6-3 6-3 6-3 6-3 6-0 6-2 6-7 6-4 6-8 6-4 6-2 6-2 6-0 6-5 6-6 6-5 6-6 6-3 6-5 6-6 6-3 6-7 6-5 6-3 6-0 6-3 6-0 6-4 6-5 6-4 5-11 6-6 6-4 6-5 6-3 6-5 5-11 6-4 5-9 6-4 5-10 6-4 6-1 6-4 5-10

184 190 203 217 232 181 219 178 191 165 219 179 233 179 171 205 216 185 208 201 195 205 200 202 183 200 235 176 194 208 192 180 200 202 217 175 188 177 207 212 228 190 180 196 197 190 214 195 206 200 225 219 198 235 189 180 180 201 171 222 236 214 235 227 228 226 220 237 207 229 217 226 276 220 257 218 241 225 232 244 289 290 299 311 282 246 299 240 295 278 295 300 312 285 314 218 261 298 327 326 320 280 273 290 307 300 234 159 205 213 220 234 225 206 254 305 254 265 229 177 275 162 321 164 336 290 322 171

Goose Creek, S.C. N. Memphis, Tenn. Jesup, Ga. Tampa, Fla. Tarboro, N.C. Marietta, Ga. Raleigh, N.C. Atlanta, Ga./Grady Merritt Island, Fla. Tyrone, Ga. Columbus, Ga. Athens, Ga. Snellville, Ga. Lithonia, Ga. Ocala, Fla. Locust Grove, Ga. West Palm Beach, Fla Perkinston, Miss. Tampa, Fla. Duluth, Ga. Woodstock, Ga. Kingsland, Ga. Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Marietta, Ga. Kingsland, Ga. Matthews, N.C. Chamblee, Ga. Belle Glade, Fla. Habersham, Ga. Cayce, S.C. Meridian, Miss. Reidsville, Ga. Marietta, Ga. Augusta, Ga. Kissimmee, Fla. Valdosta, Ga. Fayetteville, Ga. Kent, Wa. Jefferson, Ga. Valdosta, Ga. Lawrenceville, Ga. Valdosta, Ga. Calhoun, Ga. Newnan, Ga. Matthews, N.C. Cleveland, Ga. Tarpon Springs, Fla. Alpharetta, Ga. Dallas, Ga.. Cartersville, Ga. Salt Lake City, Utah Gainesville, Ga. Orlando, Fla. Hinesville, Ga. Grayson, Ga. Roswell, Ga. Rossville, Ga. Albany, Ga. Calhoun, Ga. Orlando, Fla. Germantown, Md. Griffin, Ga. Marietta, Ga. Alpharetta, Ga. Indianapolis, Ind. Alpharetta, Ga. Marietta, Ga. Decatur, Ga. Tignall, Ga. Snellville, Ga. Hephzibah, Ga. Suwanee, Ga. Thomasville, Ga. Statham, Ga. Blackshear, Ga. Dallas, Texas Jacksonville, Fla. Dublin, Ga. Tampa, Fla. College Park, Ga. Perry, Ga./Perry Marietta, Ga. Atlanta, Ga. Newnan, Ga. Gainesville, Ga. Hamilton, Ga. Buford, Ga. Buford, Ga. Johns Creek, Ga. Moultrie, Ga. Buford, Ga. Newnan, Ga. Memphis, Tenn. Cumming, Ga. LaGrange, Ga. Calhoun, Ga. Valdosta, Ga. Jacksonville, Fla. Grantville, Ga. Baltimore, Md. Athens, Ga. Buford, Ga. Tarpon Springs, Fla. Jesup, Ga. Dalton, Ga. Adamsville, Ala. Fairmount, Ga. Tallahassee, Fla. Alpharetta, Ga. Lexington, S.C. Eastman, Ga. Atlanta, Ga. Thomson, Ga. Camilla, Ga. Valdosta, Ga. College Park, Ga. Dartmouth, Mass. Millen, Ga. Newnan, Ga. Sandersville, Ga. Tucker, Ga. Atlanta, Ga./Marist Griffin, Ga. Louisville, Ga. Millen, Ga. Stone Mountain, Ga. Thomson, Ga. Athens, Ga.

Tramel Terry Sheldon Dawson Parker Welch Paris Bostick Todd Gurley Brendan Langley Keith Marshall Damian Swann Michael Erdman Shaq Wiggins Greg Bingham Blake Sailors Shaun McGee Blake Tibbs Reggie Wilkerson Curtis Wyatt Faton Bauta Kennar Johnson Aaron Murray Connor Norman Austin Herod Brice Ramsey Marshall Morgan Hutson Mason J.J. Green Christian LeMay Davin Bellamy Rantavious Wooten Jesse Jones Jonathon Rumph Shaquille Fluker Brandon Harton Quincy Mauger Brendan Douglas Marc Deas James Eunice Alex Parsons Tristan Askew Lucas Redd Josh Harvey-Clemons Jake Star Malcolm Mitchell Rhett McGowan Tray Matthews Uriah LeMay Jamal Payette Kosta Vavlas Jon Bailey Chris Conley Collin Barber Matt Stagg Chase Vasser A.J. Turman Chris Young Devin Gillespie Kyle Karempelis Devin Bowman Kenneth Townes Clay Johnson Ryne Rankin Dominic Bryan Corey Moore Brandon Burrows Jared Chapple Tim Kimbrough Merritt HallFB Tommy Long T.J. Stripling Drew Wilson Reggie Carter Corey Campbell A.J. McDonald Ray Drew Taylor Maxey Quayvon Hicks Dillard Pinkston Nathan Theus Johnny O'Neal Ramik Wilson Amarlo Herrera Clint Kirk Brandon Kublanow Garrison Smith De'Andre Johnson Sterling Bailey Jordan Jenkins Josh Cardiello Wright Gazaway David Andrews Xzavier Ward Dallas Lee Eddie McQuillen Hunter Long Michael Scullin Chris Burnette Trent Frix Aulden Bynum John Theus Kenarious Gates Greg Pyke Thomas Swilley Kolton Houston Zach DeBell Glenn Welch Watts Dantzler Mark Beard Greg Mulkey Reggie Davis Michael Bennett Jack Loonam Leonard Floyd Hugh Williams Jordan Davis Justin Scott-Wesley Jay Rome Toby Johnson Arthur Lynch James DeLoach Cole Trolinger Ethan Jackson Josh Dawson Patrick Beless Chris Mayes Thomas Pritchard John TaylorDE Mike Thornton John Atkins Adam Erickson


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Isssue 9, lsu, 2013