It’s no secret that the Georgia Bulldogs have struggled mightily – both on and off the field – so far this year. Currently 2-4, the Dawgs have hit some rather unsavory benchmarks to help remember the relatively young 2010 season: First three consecutive losses since 1990, first 0-3 SEC start since 1993, and 11 player arrests, to name a few.
Some have blamed the much talked about 4-game suspension of Georgia’s marquee player, WR A.J. Green, as the primary reason for the team’s rather lackluster performances. Others have cited the fact that a new defensive coordinator (Former Dallas DL coach, Todd Grantham) and an entirely new defensive scheme have necessitated growing pains simply too great to overcome. Still others have suggested that the game has passed head coach Mark Richt by somewhat, and that he’s been far too slow to adapt and change to a college football landscape that’s radically different from his days as Florida State’s Offensive Coordinator, and even his earlier part of his more recent years as head coach in Athens.
Perhaps most curiously, however – albeit jokingly, I assume – some Georgia fans have scapegoated the stand-in mascot, “Russ,” as the source of the woe in the Classic City (he does have rather noticeable liver marks, after all).
Russ took the place of Uga VII last season, after the latter’s untimely death. Filling in nicely, Russ witnessed an upset victory over bitter rival Georgia Tech and a Liberty Bowl win against Texas A&M prior to suffering the debacle of the 2010 season.
Regardless of how much Russ’ legacy may be maligned or appreciated, a new era of Georgia Football begins this Saturday when Georgia formally introduces the next in a long line of storied – all white? – English Bulldogs for the homecoming game against Vanderbilt. Say hello to Uga VIII, after the jump…