Dawg Days in Athens, Georgia
Visited Athens, Georgia this past Saturday, where our daughter is a freshman at the University of Georgia, and attended our first-ever Bulldogs game. The pageantry of major college football is unforgettable, but both the opponent (Western Carolina, which lost its twelfth straight, and hasn’t won a game in literally a full year) and the weather were disappointing.
While this was an out-of-league game (and the opponent was completely out of its league, losing 45-16) the game time temperatures were definitely SEC-caliber. (Sauna-like, Extremely Clammy.) The remorseless sunshine, lack of breeze and metal benches combined to induce a sweat-fest of the highest order. The digital thermometer displayed on Sanford Stadium’s Jumbo-tron said 78 degrees. And I’m Herschel Walker’s long-lost twin brother. To borrow a title from author Thomas Mcguane, it was Ninety-Two in the Shade, should we have been lucky enough to find any.
Despite the blowout win, the ‘Dawgs didn’t look that sharp, and there are undoubtedly more losses in their future. They’ve already lost at home to one of their arch-rivals in South Carolina, they’re on the road next week to visit resurgent Alabama, and it’s doubtful they’ll have an answer for Florida on October 27th, specifically their wunderkind QB, Tim Tebow, who looked unstoppable when the ‘Gators demolished Tennessee the other day.
Perhaps a safer rooting interest is the Bulldog Golf Team, lead by Savannah’s Brian Harman, a junior who’s twice been Second-Team All-American, yet disappointed that he’s not been a first-teamer. Yet. I’ve played twice with Harman, on separate occasions before his matriculation. Altogether he made a dozen birdies in the two rounds. Not bad—averaging a birdie every third hole. The golfers are currently ranked #1 nationally (Golfweek Magazine) while the football squad has a tenuous hold on a Top 25 ranking. If there’s a national championship in the offing this year, it’s likely to come from the guys in spikes, not cleats.
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