Georgia Bulldogs Face More Questions and Challenges at Quarterback

Kimberley NashSenior Writer INovember 4, 2009

JACKSONVILLE, FL - OCTOBER 31:  Brandon Spikes #51 and Ryan Stamper #41 of the Florida Gators chase after quarterback Joe Cox #14 of the Georgia Bulldogs at Jacksonville Municipal Stadium on October 31, 2009 in Jacksonville, Florida.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

After the travesty that was Georgia-Florida 2009, heads began to slowly roll in the Bulldawg Nation.

The simmering seat of Willie Martinez mushroomed to a full boil. The constant faith that was had in coach Mark Richt turned to seething disdain. The la-di-da attitude that was had about coach Mike Bobo became a "git er' done" firestorm of "why is this guy still here?" and "send him back to Jacksonville State." 

It wasn't pretty. 

However, unless you live in a bubble, you already know at least two things for sure: 1) No changes in the coaching staff are likely to be made before the end of the season and 2) Coach Mark Richt isn't going anywhere anytime soon.

The certainty ends there. 

The coaching staff can only take so much of the hammering before you get to the players wearing the jerseys on the football field. 

The coaches can't make plays. The coaches can't make on-the-fly mental adjustments. The coaches can't block or make tackles. All the coaches can do is send the guys on the field with the plays and the schemes and say "execute." If they don't, well, you get another round of "what's wrong with Georgia football?"

Most recently the talk has centered around whether or not a quarterback change is needed. Joe Cox looked awful on Saturday as he just chucked passes up at will and managed to put more of said passes into the hands of Florida's defensive backs than he did Georgia wide receivers. 

This has been a common issue with Cox lately as his weekly decline has continued and he becomes more inept by the minute. Even worse is the fact that coach Richt is holding so firm to the line of "this is OUR starting quarterback."

Really, coach? This is the guy you want to go down in flames with this season? This is the guy you want to rest your reputation on? Cox? Seriously?

Now, if there is anything that we know about coach Richt, it is this: He's loyal to a fault. 

It is both his best and his worst trait, as he never seems to know when enough is enough. Sometimes a spade is just a spade and it's time to ask the dealer for a better card to play your hand. 

The next "option" at quarterback is Logan Gray. Well, Gray showed that he may not be any more qualified to play than Joe Cox. His short series against Florida netted three passes—one of which was an interception. 

Some might say that you have to account for the stellar Florida defense and the overall youth on the offensive side for Georgia. It was just a case of a better team kicking the tar out of a rebuilding one—nothing more. 

Maybe, but, Gray has been unimpressive all season. In his one-play mode, he has accounted for more yard losses than gains and has caused some negative momentum shifts in his team's favor whenever he has made an appearance. 

Yet, he is the only other quarterback on the team with knowledge of the playbook—which after what we've seen this year may as well be set on fire.

That said, would a quarterback change really net that much of a difference? Joe Cox has gotten progressively worse but Logan Gray hasn't proven to be that much better so it's kind of like saying, pick your poison: slow and accuracy challenged, or quick and full of questions. 

Maybe coach Richt isn't exercising loyalty so much as he is just keenly aware of exactly what Georgia is working with, and Cox is the best of the bunch—that is a scary thought in and of itself.

At this point, it does seem necessary to begin playing Logan more since he is the next guy on the hot seat come 2010. We don't need him looking like a spring chicken come next fall.

Some are considering getting Aaron Murray into the mix as well but it is not a given that he is as ready as the romantics believe him to be. He looks good because of his top recruit status, but we don't want to throw him into the fire this late in the season with nothing to play for except a low-level bowl and perhaps a win or two.

Leave Aaron on the bench. 

Georgia's season has been a disappointing one but it may have been premature to expect more than seven or eight wins when you considered the relative youth and inexperience on both sides of the ball. 

As for the question of who to start, Gray or Cox, well flip a coin—doubt it makes much of a difference at this stage. 

That's not negativity, Dawg fans, I still love my red and black. That's just saying that at this point, neither guy is likely to be all that different from the other.