Georgia vs. South Carolina: Latest Spread Info, BCS Impact and Predictions

Timothy RappFeatured ColumnistOctober 4, 2012

ATHENS, GA - SEPTEMBER 22: Aaron Murray #11 of the Georgia Bulldogs celebrates after a touchdown against the Vanderbilt Commodores at Sanford Stadium on September 22, 2012 in Athens, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

It doesn't get much bigger than when Georgia and South Carolina meet in a huge SEC East showdown.

The Bulldogs come in with one of the most balanced offensive attacks in the country, led by quarterback Aaron Murray and running backs Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall.

But South Carolina counters with one of the country's best defenses, namely up front, where defensive ends Jadeveon Clowney and Devin Taylor give opposing quarterbacks headaches. Oh, and there's also that Marcus Lattimore guy, who has given Georgia fits in his career.

Seriously, it doesn't get any better than this. Let's take a closer look at the biggest football game on tap for this weekend.


Where: Williams-Brice Stadium, Columbia, SC

When: Saturday, October 6 at 7 p.m. ET

Watch: ESPN; WatchESPN


Spread: Georgia (+1), according to Bovada

I know South Carolina is at home, but I really like Georgia in this game. While South Carolina's defense (namely the front seven) is really imposing, the offensive balance the Bulldogs bring into this game is really hard to defend. 


Over/Under: 53.5, according to Bet Online

Take the under. For as good as Georgia's offense is, they face a really steep task against an excellent South Carolina defense. Meanwhile, I expect the Bulldogs—with all of their big names back on the defensive side of the ball—will make life difficult for the Gamecocks.


Georgia Injuries (via USA Today)

G Hunter Long, Foot, Questionable


South Carolina Injuries (via USA Today)

Mike Matulis, Shoulder, Questionable


BCS Implications

This game is huge, plain and simple. The winner will be the frontrunner to win the SEC East (though Florida will have something to say about that), and remains squarely in the national-championship picture.

The loser isn't out of the running by any means, but the road to the top will have gotten a lot bumpier.


Keys to Georgia Win

The Bulldogs have to be able to stop Marcus Lattimore and the running game, plain and simple. South Carolina would love nothing more than to grind out this game by running the ball and playing tough defense, and they'll win if they can dominate possession and limit Georgia's offensive touches.

But if Georgia can stack the box, eliminate the running game, pressure Connor Shaw and force turnovers when he steps back to pass, the offense will be able to provide enough points to get the win.


Keys to South Carolina Win

Georgia is going to try desperately to slow down the South Carolina running attack, so this game will come down to the play of Shaw at quarterback.

If there is a way to beat Georgia, it's through the air, and Shaw can handle the responsibility. But if Georgia keeps the Gamecocks in long third downs and Shaw makes poor decisions or turns the ball over, I simply don't see the Gamecocks winning.

The defense is stout, but Georgia has too many weapons to be shut down completely. The defense can only keep this game close. I doubt they can win the game for South Carolina.



This is going to be a beauty of a contest. Georgia will end a three-game losing streak to the Gamecocks and will finally slow down Lattimore, winning 24-21.


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