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Bye week barometer: Bulldogs earn low marks despite 5-1 start - The Red and Black : Sports

Bye week barometer: Bulldogs earn low marks despite 5-1 start

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Posted: Saturday, October 13, 2012 12:29 pm | Updated: 8:51 pm, Sun Oct 14, 2012.

Editor's Note: With the bye week giving them time to reflect, The Red & Black's two football beat writers, Ryan Black and Benjamin Wolk, sat down with sports editor Nicholas Fouriezos to discuss the Bulldogs' season. 

Since midterms are still in the air, the first question is simple: What grade would you give the Bulldogs after their start to the season?

Ryan Black: B-

I think B- is a fair grade considering what Georgia has done this season. The Bulldogs started 5-0 while setting records on offense to help them rise to No. 5 in the country. Other parts of the team have not been quite as stellar, as the defense has been uneven at best and mediocre at worst, while special teams unit has battled issues of its own on its coverage and extra-point units.

Of course, the grade would have been higher if not for the loss to South Carolina last week. Heck, it would have been higher if it had at least been a more "competitive" loss. Getting dominated against the only ranked team they have played in six games, however, and the Bulldogs are not going to get an "A" from me.

Benjamin Wolk: B-

This Georgia football team is almost impossible to put one grade on. Throughout four games, the Bulldogs had a solid argument for an "A" grade. Then came Tennessee. The shaky defense against the Volunteers left some big question marks heading into South Carolina, and we all know how that one turned out. Coming into the year, this team was expected to have a prolific defense with an unreliable offense. Until South Carolina, it was a complete role reversal — unsteady defense with a high-powered offense. Add in South Carolina and the enigma of Georgia football becomes even more complicated. With that said, being 5-1 at the halfway point, and the only loss coming against the now-No. 3 Gamecocks, the Bulldogs have played solid football that just hasn’t been complete.

Nicholas Fouriezos: C+

I'm the lowest of my colleagues on the Bulldogs. Here's why: the Bulldogs have done exactly what was expected of them, barring the loss to South Carolina, and have done nothing to convince me that this season is any better than last year. Last year was a good season, but the Bulldogs had to sneak into the Southeastern Conference Championship game after South Carolina dropped two-conference games. They defeated bottom-dwellers Missouri and Tennessee in the SEC East this season, in less-than dominating fashion (Missouri had a lead in the third quarter, and was very much in the air until some fortunate plays went Georgia's way, Tennessee was also a game where the Bulldogs should have been much more dominant). 

A "C" grade is passing — and that's what the Bulldogs are doing, getting by enough to garner some accolades, but not enough to win anything substantial. Sure the schedule hasn't tested them all that much, but in the one game that they could have proven something, they dropped the ball. And maybe that's exactly where this team stands. Either way, beating Florida would go a long way to improving their season, but I just don't see it happening.

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