The Georgia Bulldogs are the athletic teams of the University of Georgia. The Bulldogs compete in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I and are members of the Southeastern Conference (SEC). The official mascot is Uga and Hairy Dawg.
College football is American football played by teams of student athletes fielded by American universities, colleges, and military academies, or Canadian football played by teams of student athletes fielded by Canadian universities. It was through college football play that American football rules first gained popularity in the United States.
Sports are an important part of the culture of the United States. Three of the nation's five most popular team sports were developed in North America: American football, basketball and ice hockey, whereas soccer and baseball were developed in England. The four Major leagues in the United States are the National Basketball Association (NBA), National Football League (NFL), Major League Baseball (MLB), the National Hockey League (NHL); all enjoy massive media exposure and are considered the preeminent competitions in their respective sports in the world. Three of those leagues have teams that represent Canadian cities, and all four are among the most lucrative sports leagues in the world. The top professional soccer league in the United States, Major League Soccer, has not yet reached the popularity levels of the top four sports leagues, although average attendance has been increasing and in fact has matched or surpassed those of the NBA and the NHL.
Professional teams in all major sports operate as franchises within a league. All major sports leagues use the same type of schedule with a playoff tournament after the regular season ends. In addition to the major league-level organizations, several sports also have professional minor leagues, active in smaller cities across the country.
American football (known as football in the United States and gridiron in some other countries) is a sport played by two teams of eleven players on a rectangular field 120 yards long by 53.33 yards wide with goalposts at each end. The offense attempts to advance an oval ball (the football) down the field by running with or passing it. They must advance it at least ten yards in four downs to receive a new set of four downs and continue the drive; if not, they turn over the football to the opposing team. Points are scored by advancing the ball into the opposing team's end zone for a touchdown, kicking the ball through the opponent's goalposts for a field goal or by the defense tackling the ball carrier in the offense's end zone for a safety. The team with the most points at the end of a game wins.
American football evolved in the United States, originating from the sport of rugby football. The first game of American football was played on November 6, 1869 between two college teams, Rutgers and Princeton, under rules resembling rugby and soccer. A set of rule changes drawn up from 1880 onward by Walter Camp, the "Father of American Football", established the snap, eleven-player teams and the concept of downs, and later rule changes legalized the forward pass, created the neutral zone and specified the size and shape of the football.
Mark Richt (born February 18, 1960) is the head coach of the University of Georgia Bulldogs football team. His previous affiliations include fourteen years at Florida State University where he served as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, and one year as offensive coordinator at East Carolina University.
Hairy Dawg is the costumed mascot of the University of Georgia Bulldogs. Hairy Dawg made his first appearance at the 1981 Sugar Bowl and has been an official mascot of UGA since. Hairy Dawg attends all Georgia Bulldogs football games and most home athletic events (including Georgia Bulldogs basketball, Georgia Lady Bulldogs basketball, Georgia Bulldogs baseball, Georgia Gym Dogs, tennis, volleyball, equestrian, and soccer). Forbes ranks Hairy Dawg No. 3 in their list of "America's Top 10 Sports Mascots".