Changes abound for the University of Georgia football program this fall, but Jeff Dantzler sees good things in store for the Bulldog Nation.
Dantzler, who provides radio play-by-play and commentary for various UGA sports, was in Forsyth County on Thursday for what's become an annual tradition around these parts — his address to the Lanier 400 Bulldog Club at the Reid Barn.
Before his presentation, he gave some thoughts on the 2010 Bulldogs.
The changes in Athens start right at the top, where former tennis player Greg McGarity was hired as the school's new athletic director last month.
"I think it could be the most unifying thing for people close to to the program since 1980," Dantzler said of McGarity's hire.
That would be a pretty high bar, considering the storied 1980 Georgia team brought Athens its last national championship.
"He is just an amazing guy, incredibly respected and well liked," Dantzler said.
There are also big changes on the field and along the sidelines. It will be sink-or-swim for redshirt quarterback Aaron Murray this year, as well as new defensive coordinator Todd Grantham, who is implementing a 3-4 defense.
"If you've got to break in a new quarterback, you've got 10 starters back around you, so that would be the optimum time to do it," Dantzler said.
"And with Todd Grantham coming in, I think with the new [defensive] coaches in there, there's some enthusiasm coming in."
How does Dantzler see all these parts working together in 2010?
The announcer noted that he was "right on it" at last year's meeting with his prediction of a 7-5 regular season — proof that though he bleeds red and black, he's not afraid to forecast a down year.
He's much more upbeat this season, predicting a 10-2 season in which Georgia beats rivals Florida and Georgia Tech, wins the SEC East and meets defending national champion Alabama in the Georgia Dome for the conference title.
And how does Dantzler expect things to shake out Dec. 4 in Atlanta?
"Well, we might just have to spring an upset on them," he said with a grin. "Let's say [Georgia wins] 29-28."