The Big Letdown

By: Jeff Doke news services

When I was a freshman at Young Harris College, I was introduced to a south Florida-based parrot head musician named Del Suggs. The chorus of one of his songs said “when everything’s coming up roses, I get suspicious.”

Boy howdy, does that sentiment ring true right now.

As any lifelong Dawg fan will gladly tell you – whether you want to hear it or not – we’ve been through a lot over the years: Second & 26. Half a hundred between the hedges. No, make that the entire Steve Spurrier run.

The Dawgs have been close (or should have been close) so many times since 1980 that many of us have developed a healthy sense of skepticism. Can you blame us though? We survived Jim Donnan *AND* Mark Richt.

This year feels different, though. Undefeated through seven games. Undefeated in the SEC with our backup quarterback and a decimated receiver corp. A defense that has allowed only 4 touchdowns all year…and it would have been three if Mark Stoops’ bookie hadn’t gotten that call through. Georgia, no matter how badly we don’t want to say it out loud, looks unstoppable.

This year’s Georgia/Florida game shouldn’t be a trap game. So why is it making me so nervous?

The 2021 Floriduh Gaturs are not a good football team. Neither QB has proved to be outstanding, although both were described as such in the preseason.

Yes, they almost took Bama to overtime, but I’m standing by my belief that this year’s Bama is a paper tiger.

Dan Mulllen has already gotten a third L to supplement the two Ls you can’t spell his name without. Not only are they not at their usual spot in the top 2 spots of the SEC East, they’re in 4th, behind Tennessee AND KENTUCKY.

Let that sink in. Florida is behind Kentucky. In FOOTBALL.

I’m pretty sure this is mentioned somewhere in Revelations, I’m just scared to look.

I’m nervous about this game because records and rankings absolutely do not matter in this matchup. Let’s take a look at the last few times a highly ranked UGA team has gone up against an unranked Florida squad.

2017 – #3 Georgia 42 – Florida 7. Okay, this one worked out the way we thought, but just wait.

2014 – Florida 38 – #9 Georgia 20. I’m not sure, but I think this was the year Fred Taylor’s kid decided he had some of his old man’s talent. Not sure, I’ve blocked this game from my memory.

2002 – Florida 20 – #5 Georgia 13. Ron Zook’s first year as coach (yeah, I forgot him, too), and a team led by a QB most famous for almost breaking his fool neck headbutting a cement wall on national television.

If we were to flip the script, the last time an unranked Georgia squad beat a ranked Florida team was 1989.

Thirty-two years ago. When George Bush was still in office. The first one, that is.

This is why I am hesitant to embrace hope this year, much less this week. Weird stuff happens at the WLOCP.

True, the 2021 Bulldogs have started to be mentioned in “best of all time” discussions, and rightfully so. JT Daniels is trending towards playing, and let’s be honest, it won’t be a heartbreak if he doesn’t – you’d like to see the Mailman get some payback for last year too, yeah?

My mind says “we’ve got this.” My heart says “ease up off the gas there, pablo.”

My cardiology nurse, however, says “please stop watching Georgia football.” I should probably listen to her, considering she’s my wife.