We've been here before.
Mercedes-Benz Stadium has held its share of glory and heartaches for the
Georgia Bulldogs, especially when Alabama is on the field. We all know about
the fourth quarter double digit lead that UGA lost in the final minutes to
the Crimson Tide.
But, this season has seemed different starting with the impressive
opening day 10-7 win over Clemson. The defense has been the star of the team
holding one opponent after another to less than 7 points per game while the
offense tacked on 40.
I have to admit, I've been apprehensive multiple times throughout the
season. And each time, in retrospect, there didn't seem to be a reason to be
When Georgia hosted South Carolina, there was concern since the Gamecocks
have played them tough over the years. But, a 40-13 victory quickly removed
Two weeks later, it really looked difficult as the undefeated
Arkansas Razorbacks came to Athens. But, UGA easily dispatched Sam Pittman's
hot team with their second straight shutout 37-0.
After Alabama lost at Texas A&M, Georgia ascended into the #1 spot
in the country and never let go. They headed to Auburn, who had been playing
well. But, no problem with another win 34-10.
Another hot SEC team came to Athens with undefeated and 11th ranked
Kentucky. But, the defense again held a good team in check winning 30-13.
There was more concern as the Dawgs headed to the annual
hostilities in Jacksonville to take on the team that came close to beating
Bama earlier in the season and had beaten Georgia in 2020 on the way to an
SEC East title.
Again, no problem with a 34-7 domination. Within a few weeks, head
coach Dan Mulen would be out of a job.
Another hot team was Tennessee displaying one of the most explosive offenses
in the country. The Vols got up early. Then, the Bulldogs took over and
never looked back en route to an impressive 41-17 win.
Now, they take their 12-0 record into the SEC Championship Game to
exorcise the Crimson Tide demons. For the first time in a dozen years,
Alabama enters a game as an underdog.
On the surface, they have not looked impressive, needing 4
overtimes to barely hold on to beat Auburn 24-22 the previous week. Similar
close calls with narrow win margins have occurred at Florida (31-29) against
LSU (20-14) and Arkansas 42-35. Except for LSU, whom UGA didn't play, all of
those teams were dominated by Georgia.
Does that translate to a win for the Bulldogs. It should. But, its
Alabama. And as someone said, until Georgia can prove they can beat the
Tide, its hard to say they will. I'm thinking, like the Braves, this is
their year. Georgia 31, Alabama 17.