When you mention the name Todd Grantham around a Georgia Bulldog fan these days, you hear a lot about him being the man who will return the Georgia defense to a "GATA" brand of football.
For those of you who aren't aware of what "GATA" means, it's an acronym for "G et A fter T heir A --es" or, the more PG version, "G et A fter T hem A ggressively."
It's a term that was born during the days of Georgia coaching legend Erk Russell . Russell once roamed the sidelines of Sanford Stadium as the Georgia Bulldogs' defensive coordinator.
He is considered by many fans to be the symbol of how a defense should be—the father of the "Junkyard Dawg" (JYD).
He was also the man behind the stifling Georgia defense that would eventually win the National Championship in 1980.
He is still thought of fondly by many a Georgia Bulldog fan, both old and young, because was a hard-nosed, take no shorts kind of coach who expected, and often received, the very best that his guys had to offer.
In his 17 years as coordinator, Russell coached the defensive unit to 27 shutouts.
Georgia's opposition was held to less than 17 points in more than half of the games he coached (135 out of 192), and no opponent ever scored more than 28 points on an Erk Russell led defense.
Is Todd Grantham going to be the difference for Georgia?
Since his departure, there have been few who could come close to that kind of dominance.
Brian Van Gorder (2001-2004) was great, but his early departure did not sit well with many, and his replacement, Willie Martinez, didn't pan out.
Enter Todd Grantham.
He's a no-nonsense guy with a nose for defense. It's impossible to listen to him and not feel like you want to go out and hit something afterwards.
He inspires the very essence of "GATA" already—without having coached a down—and if he ends up being anything close to advertised, Georgia is well on it's way to regaining their SEC respect.
So, with Alabama being the 'King of the Hill' right now, and Georgia being the underdog with what many feel as a chance in hades of making the SEC Championship game this season, it seemed only fitting to post the video you see below. Even the mighty ones have been known to fall.
Here's to a season where, hopefully, Georgia can make that happen...a girl can dream, right?
(This article appears courtesy of The Lady Sportswriter )