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A lot for Dogs to bark about..


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A lot for Dogs to bark about

By Terence Moore | Sunday, June 22, 2008, 10:01 PM

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Now the baseball team is causing the loudest barking around Athens for its resiliency before and during the College World Series. Remember that red-and-black miracle earlier this spring, when Georgia won the SEC basketball tournament out of nowhere?

There were other impressive things involving Georgia athletics since the start of this academic year. We ll get to them after mentioning that the sum of those things makes the Bulldogs of Mark Richt, Matthew Stafford and Knowshon Moreno favored to become the elite of the elite during the Bowl Championship Series.

Without a doubt, said Georgia baseball coach David Perno, over the phone from Omaha, Neb. That s where his streaking team will open the best-of-three championship round tonight at 7 p.m. at Rosen-

blatt Stadium in search of the fourth national championship overall for the Bulldogs athletics department since April.

Added Perno, Baseball, being the last sport [in the academic year], it can ignite things for the following year. It can lead you right into football, and, obviously, you know the importance of football at Georgia.

It s always about football at Georgia. For the moment, it s also about baseball at Georgia.

Prior to that, Perno s Bulldogs had to survive a shocking loss to Lipscomb during their own regional, and then they had to take two of three from North Carolina State during the super regional. After reaching Omaha, the Bulldogs slew No. 1 seed Miami before taking care of Stanford.

So Georgia will end the month as nothing worse than the nation s second-best college baseball team.

That s OK. It s just that becoming the nation s best college baseball team is more Georgia-like these days. In April, the Bulldogs won it all in women s gymnastics, and they did the same after the equestrian team events. Then, in May, they took the national title in men s tennis.

If you re counting, Georgia s various sports teams have 11 top-10 finishes during this academic calendar season. In other words, it sounds like coaches and players for the Bulldogs motivate each other. Either that, or they scare each other into success since nobody wants to become the mediocre oddballs on campus.

Iron sharpens iron, and there s nothing but great and class coaches over there [throughout UGA], said Perno, in his 12th year overall as a coach for the Bulldogs baseball program, including the past seven as head man.

Added Perno, You have coaches at Georgia with a lot of tenure, from the gymnastics coach, Suzanne Yoculan, Andy Landers [women basketball], Manny Diaz [men s tennis]. & These are pioneers. They re just phenomenal. You can learn a lot from them, and they definitely know how to win.

Perno forgot to mention Perno, because Perno is a prolific winner, too. He played on Georgia s baseball team that took the national championship in 1990. He later reached the College World Series as a Bulldogs assistant coach, and now he s reaching it for the third time as their head man. I mean, given this baseball thing, and that basketball thing, and all of those other things involving UGA teams, is there any doubt the college sporting gods are preparing to slip on football cleats this fall in Athens?

Georgia athletics director Damon Evans responded quickly over the phone while chuckling, I hope so.

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Scott Van Pelt actually just compared us to Boston..LOL. Talked about how great it must be to be a Dawg fan right now with our baseball team, miracle basketball team and upcoming football team. Didn't even bring up those gymnastics, Tennis, and Equestrian titles. Gave his props to Athens but not sure we are on that Boston level.

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