Georgia-Tennessee: A Tale of Redemption

Wes HoltzclawCorrespondent IOctober 7, 2009

GAINESVILLE, FL - SEPTEMBER 19:  Head coach Lane Kiffin of the Tennessee Volunteers watches the action prior to the game against the Florida Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on September 19, 2009 in Gainesville, Florida.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

For the first time in 25 meetings, the Georgia Bulldogs and Tennessee Volunteers will meet with neither one of the two teams being ranked in the top 25.

Both teams are coming off heart-breaking losses and will be seeking some redemption to turn their seasons around.

Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin came into his first season letting his mouth get the best of him by bad-mouthing other SEC coaches.

So far his Vols have not been able to back up his big talk as they have started off the year 2-3 (0-2 in the SEC).

His team suffered their second SEC loss to a team, Auburn, that is led by fellow first year SEC coach Gene Chizik.

It was Chizik, not Kiffin, who was supposed to have all the trouble in his first year, especially since he was only 5-19 in his two years at Iowa State. Instead, he has the Auburn Tigers at 5-0 competing with Alabama for the SEC West lead.

After losses to Florida and Auburn, Kiffin will now have to try for his first SEC victory against Georgia and coach Mark Richt.

Mark Richt has had his success against Tennessee in his first eight meetings against the Vols going 5-3, including 3-1 in Knoxville.

Georgia, like Tennessee, is also seeking some redemption after a devastating 20-13 loss to No. 4 LSU in Athens.

For Georgia, this season has been a tale of two teams.

The Dawgs 3-2 (1-1 in the SEC) are 3-0 when the offense shows up and 0-2 when the offense decides not to play.

Who is going to show up in Knoxville?

If the offense starts clicking early, the Dawgs will have a chance to win, but if they struggle like they did the first half against LSU it could be a long day in front of 100,000-plus rabid Volunteer fans.

The defense showed signs of improvement last week against LSU. They totaled six sacks and held the Tigers out of the end zone for three and half quarters keeping the Dawgs in the game with opportunity to come out on top.

Unfortunately, they simply ran out gas after being on the field for most of the game.

That cannot happen in Knoxville if the team hopes to improve to 4-2 on the year.

Whatever team shows up it should be an exciting game with one team coming out of this game with a sense that they can make this season into a respectable year.

The losing team, well, the season will be pretty much over with no shot at postseason play.