Notes from the Arkansas game

News, notes, and comments from the Arkansas game.

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  • Brian VanGorder told his defense after Arkansas took their opening possession in for a touchdown that they "had better play better or next week will be a bad week." Meaning that the defense had better show up for the rest of the game or they would be punished in practice.
  • The defense responded by only allowing a field goal in the second half. Even that kick needed some help from Old Lady Luck. Arkansas tallied three points with help from the goalpost. The kick shanked in off of the left post and fell over the poll. Georgia did not have the same luck earlier in the game.
  • Arkansas' offense did two things great yesterday. They found the weak link in the Georgia secondary, Bruce Thornton, and they exposed him. Every chance that he got, Houston Nutt called a play that went either to Thornton's side or was a where Thornton was in one on one coverage.
  • The other positive for the Hogs was that their offensive line made huge improvements over their play from last week. The Hogs were able to pick up blitzes effectively and their line threw outstanding blocks for their running game and gave good protection until their back had to leave the game with a shoulder injury.
  • But at some points the Hogs still struggled without help from Georgia. The Dawgs were called for several personal foul calls. At one point in the game the Dawgs continuously committed penalties that extended an Arkansas drive. It showed that Georgia had three weeks off before this game.
  • David Greene was on most of the day. The freshman was 20 for 37 with 298 yards and two touchdowns. He is still acclimating himself to the speed of the college game. He had a few passes that were off target. One reason was that it appeared Greene was not getting as good of protection that he has enjoyed in the past. In order to beat Tennessee, Georgia's line needs to show improvement. Greene, known for staying in the pocket, needs time to find his receivers.
  • Greene did not get discouraged early with Georgia's slow start in the passing game. Instead he stuck with it and wound up with a pretty big day for himself.
  • Georgia's kicking game is becoming a concern for me. Jonathon Kilgo's punts were not as crisp as usual on Saturday and the converge for those punts was poor. Arkansas used a punt return to score their only touchdown of the second half. The touchdown was enough to give Arkansas a chance to win the game, but the defense squashed any Arkansas effort to score in the 2nd half.
  • Billy Bennett's 55-yard field goal is his new career long. His previous long was 49-yards. The play was a momentum swinger for the Dawgs, from the point where Bennett "stuck it up in there 55 yards". After the kick, Bennett came to the sideline where he received a smile and a hug from his Head Coach Mark Richt.
  • Bennett's low trajectory allows him to kick longer distances better than most kickers. It also allows team's to block his kicks easier. Needless to say, protection is mandatory in order for Bennett to perform to his highest level.
  • With Reggie Brown out for the remainder of the season, it was good to see young receivers Michael Johnson and Fred Gibson step up and show signs that they can replace Brown.
  • Richt is almost forgotten by the television cameras. He is sort of non-descript on the sideline. Not in the same way that Jim Donnan was, that loafing around with your hands crossed thing, Richt's sideline style is different. It seems Richt has a more personal relationship with his players when compared with Donnan.
  • Georgia looked good at the end of the first half driving the ball. Greene intelligently spiked the ball on 1st down and then a ball that appeared caught by Edwards was ruled incomplete. Bennett was not able to convert another 55-yarder, but Georgia looked pretty good moving down the field late in the second quarter.
  • Edwards had a powerful night with six receptions for 122 yards and a touchdown. Edwards' finest catch came after a Arkansas field goal in the second half. The play set up a touchdown for the Dawgs, and ended Arkansas' chances to win the game. The Dawgs did no go to Edwards early, but they did get to him often. And just like a wrote a few weeks ago, Edwards assumed responsibility for his poor play against USC and held himself accountable for it in practice. He obviously worked hard in the time off.
  • This was one of the sloppiest games that I have seen recently. Arkansas and Georgia combined for the most penalties in a Georgia game in more than a decade.
  • Munson added, "the Dawgs are standing here with a baseball bat and hitting themselves in the mouth over and over and over again" about the multiple penalties in the game. The name of this game was how sloppy is was, between multiple field goals hitting the goalpost, more than 20 combined penalties, and the over all length of the game showed that Georgia was a little rusty.
  • Larry Munson said, "I am convinced that Old Lady Luck is not in the stadium" He was right, but Georgia still won.

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