ATHENS- The smell of football is in the air and thanks to Kenny Chesney is in my ear every five to ten minutes on country radio with his newly released single “Boys of Fall”. The other noise in the air that is hovering over Athens and the rest of Bulldog nation is the buzz of college football season which will get kicked off nationally on Thursday, but will get underway Saturday for the Dawgs. Much of the chatter is surrounding the question of how well Georgia’s redshirt freshman quarterback Aaron Murray will fair this season?
When it comes to Aaron Murray you are in one of two camps. You think that he is going to do very well surrounded by a veteran offense, or he is going to struggle just like he has in much of the spring and fall practices. Rather then talk about his failures in scrimmages and passing drills, I am going to look at the quarterback that he is going to try to model himself after.
David Greene has been the only freshman quarterback in recent history that has had success his first year leading the Dawgs. The 2001 SEC Freshman of the Year was able to command the Bulldogs with his ability to control the game and rely on his running backs to wear the defense down. While Matthew Stafford was extremely talented but each of his three seasons the dogs had at least two losses. The past decade, Georgia has one SEC championships behind quarterbacks with more leadership then talent.
There are exceptions to every rule, but the biggest question I have for any young quarterback is does he have the ability to lead a team when they are staring defeat in the eyes? I believed in Matthew Stafford because I feel for all the bells and whistles that he brought to the table. But, David Greene proved on the road against 5. Tennessee that he had the ability to rally a group of guys.
In an AJC.com article by Jeff Shultz, Aaron Murray and Mark Richt talk about Murray’s similarity to Greene.
With a win Saturday, Murray will prove that he has the ability to play at the college level. After Sept. 11ths game at South Carolina, we will find out if Murray has the ability to lead a team on the road in a hostile environment. I hope the Murray and Greene comparison holds true because I believe that is what the Georgia offense needs.
During last years preseason, Joe Cox was said to be the second coming of DJ Shockley. If Aaron Murray mimics the play of David Greene, Georgia fans may have made their predictions a couple years two early. If Murray plays well, the highly recruited quarterback from North Carolina, Christian LeMay, may in fact find out how DJ Shockley felt as he waited for David Greene to lose his job.
- Zack Price