A plea to the UGA Athletic Association

The empty “Elite Eight” banner remains an eyesore inside of Stegeman Coliseum.

While the University of Georgia’s men’s basketball team has been competing at the collegiate level for over a century, the program’s history and tradition can be described as anything but “storied”.  In all of those years, the Dawgs have managed to reach the NCAA Tournament just eleven times – and two of those appearances – 1985 and 2002 – have since been vacated by the NCAA for rules violations (check out Jim Harrick’s Wikipedia for further details on 2002).

Georgia’s deepest runs in the tournament came in 1996, when Pertha Robinson carried UGA into the Sweet Sixteen before falling to Syracuse; and, the most glorious Bulldog postseason occurred in 1983 under the tutelage of Hugh Durham, who along with on-court leaders Vern Fleming and Terry Fair saw Georgia reach the Final Four for the only time in school history.

Other than these few and fleeting moments of success, the UGA basketball program has for the most part resided in mediocrity.  ESPN recently released a ranking of the top 309 basketball programs using a scoring system that they developed to analyze the past 50 years of competition – the network pitted Georgia at 171, just after American, Alcorn State and San Diego, yet immediately ahead of Mississippi Valley State, Akron, Lafeyette and Oregon.

Honestly, this ranking seems just about right for UGA.  In the past decade, the Dawgs’ have made just one showing in the polls (#24 in the AP during the 2010-2011 season).

Now don’t get me wrong – I am excited about the direction that Coach Mark Fox is moving this team, and I think that the Bulldogs have a brighter future ahead.

I am writing this entry as a plea to the UGA Athletic Association, begging them to please make an addition to one of the banners that hangs inside of Stegeman Coliseum.  Specifically, I am referring to the “Elite Eight” banner, which currently showcases a blank slate.  However, this situation can be rectified.  As aforementioned, the Dawgs did in fact play and win in the 1983 Elite Eight round, meaning that this banner is deserved of some ink.

While this request may seem meaningless and meager, I think that it would provide a small boost to the UGA fans, players and future recruits.  Having a blank banner is embarrassing to the school and the program, and I can’t imagine that it helps in any way, shape or form to bring in a recruit so that he may gaze upon its empty canvas.

5 thoughts on “A plea to the UGA Athletic Association

  1. I would have thought your open letter to the Athletics Association would have said that our UGA Basketball Arena has not been invited to host even one entry-level tournament game after 1971.

    41 years.

    We need a proper arena for our highly successfully women’s basketball program. And, for our gymnastics program, which appears to have fallen-off. And, our men’s basketball team cannot expect to recruit top players when the other arenas have twice the number of seats.

    The front of the building fell off the other day.

    You have to walk under wooden protection bridges to even get in.

    Good Lord.

    Buy us an indoor practice facility for football, and a basketball gym. This is UGA.



  2. good call Hoop. alternatively they could just make a banner for each NCAA season instead of the banners-by-round.

    it is sad to see how badly our hoopdawgs are trumped by gymnastics on the banner wall. nothing against the gymnists, but the situation reminds me of Phillips Arena, where Widespread Panic has more banners than the Hawks.

    finally, as I have mentioned here before, UGA needs to take the seats out of the student section, replace with benches like Sanford, and cram in more students.

    Go Dawgs!


    1. Yeah, I don’t understand the banners-by-round at all. It’s reminiscent of the old Sanford Stadium sign, which listed all the years UGA was SEC football champions. I’m sure you’ll remember — “1942-46-48-59-66-68-76-80-81-82-” with plenty of blank space after that final mocking dash. Stayed that way until they bowled in that end of the stadium. Just hang a banner for each notable accomplishment!


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