Todd Gurley’s Suspension Shows what Georgia Football Stands For


Suspending Todd Gurley couldn’t have been an easy decision, but it shows what Georgia football stands for.

Be happy you’re not as old as I am, because if you think you have a legitimate gripe about how the Todd Gurley suspension went down, you won’t wanna hear my story because it will make you feel like nothing more than a whiner.

Try to follow me as I wind my way to my point.

More from Dawn of the Dawg

I’m watching Notre Dame at Florida State right now and am reminded of how Georgia football was born again.

The year was 1928, and the powerful Notre Dame football team was ruling the land. Georgia had been languishing in the essence of Southern football. I say ‘essence’ because while Georgia was holding their own in the southland, we didn’t smell like a national power, and the formidable teams of the time did not view us as a threat.

That was about to change.

Knute Rockne and the Golden Domers were the scourge of the football world, and so it was determined that if we had a Notre Dame man, he would lead us to national prominence.

That man was Harry Mehre. He was the center in front of the Four Horsemen, a teammate of George Gipp, and was a Knute Rockne disciple. GEORGIA FOOTBALL WAS BUILT ON NOTRE DAME PRINCIPLES!

Coach Mehre christened Sanford Stadium in 1929 with a win over defending National Champion Yale. In fact Harry was 5-0 versus the northern football powerhouse, and Georgia’s notoriety had been established.

Unfortunately, we forfeited that momentum in the Vince Dooley years. Ironic, isn’t it? Herschel Walker gave Vince the Prince a National Championship in a 1981 Sugar Bowl win over Notre Dame. Y’see, in all those years we had not been Georgia’s team, but a team serving solely as Dooley’s pension plan.

I’m not a numerologist, but when I think of the Prince, I see the number 7. With perennial championship quality personnel, Dooley, to me, always seemed to have the ability to put governors on those teams to finish right around 7 wins. I said at the time that when Herschel parted the sea and arrived on Milledge, Georgia put on the BVD’s; they were Beyond Vince Dooley. But, that’s a story for another day!

The point is this…Georgia used to stand for something, but the Dooley years robbed us of our momentum and reduced us to only a line item on the weekly schedule.

But Georgia football was reignited with the emergence of Mark Richt. For the first time since 1966, Bulldawg football stands for something. We are establishing the first memorable legacy since Harry Mehre left in 1936. The Wally Butts years were admirable but didn’t approach the prominence that had previously been anticipated.

Oct 18, 2014; Little Rock, AR, USA; Georgia Bulldogs head coach Mark Richt motions to the fans after the game against the Arkansas Razorbacks at War Memorial Stadium. Georgia defeated Arkansas 45-32. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

NO…! I did not like how Mark Richt preempted an NCAA decision on Todd Gurley, I thought it was a knee-jerk reaction, but I’m also hearing that Todd’s signing escapades were pervasive and the NCAA would have reacted sternly. I also recognize that, under Richt, Georgia football stands for something, and that something is perennial national championship contention.

It’s going to take a while; don’t forget, while ‘they’ had Bear, ‘we’ had Dooley. Legitimate national football championship teams are not born in a day, month or decade…they are nurtured, massaged and developed over time,

I didn’t agree with Coach, but I sure wouldn’t argue with him over this because over the last 12 years, Georgia football stands for something…something admirable and good.

We don’t wanna be a rag-tag outfit, we wanna be the crown jewel of Southern football. You may not be a fan of the Domers, but they do it the right way, and they’ve done it like that for so many years that many resent them. I, for one, would like to be known as a advocate of a team that goes about its business in similar fashion.

Good decision, Coach. Todd will return, and in the meantime, the depth you have recruited will keep us in striking distance. I’m proud of Georgia Football!