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Aaron Murray brings maturity this year.
This is only the second time that Boise State and Georgia have met. The first meeting was in 2005 in Athens, and No. 13 Georgia easily took the match from No. 18 Boise State 48-13
Likewise, the Broncos have not had that much luck against SEC opponents in their history, going 0-4 with losses to Arkansas twice, Georgia and South Carolina.
This game also marks the first game that Boise State will be playing in the Mountain West Conference, defecting from the WAC where they won eight league titles with a record of 75-5 against league opponents.
Under head coach Chris Petersen, the Broncos have logged three undefeated seasons, although last season they dropped one to go 12-1, along with NCAA accusations against several sports, including football. The outcome of those violations is yet to be known.
The Broncos come into the Georgia Dome Saturday night ranked No. 5 in the AP preseason poll.
Georgia has had its troubles lately as well. Last year’s team was marred by player arrests, suspensions and a losing season, with the Bulldogs going 6-7. Also, this year, there has been some speculation about their No. 19 preseason national ranking. Some feel they don’t deserve it. Lots to prove here for Georgia.
The Bulldogs head coach, Mark Richt, is definitely on the hot seat to produce a winning team this year, and so far his preseason hasn’t been disrupted with player missteps as we’ve seen at LSU and Ole Miss, and like there was for the Bulldogs last year. But let’s talk about the matchup.
The game should be a quarterback duel.
Boise State’s Kellen Moore has experience to burn over Georgia QB Aaron Murray.
Moore was fourth in the voting in last year’s Heisman contest, and is a contender again this year. His numbers are more than impressive and the list of awards too lengthy to mention.
Murray, on the other hand, has a discipline and maturity that helped him weather last season, where he put up some impressive numbers despite the lack of wins.
Given his experience, Moore nudges Murray aside as the better quarterback, but Murray could have the motivation to overcome the underdog position he finds himself in. That goes a long way in sparking a great performance
Elsewhere on the field, watch for some fireworks in the big-play department.
The Bulldogs have been talking smack, or TwitterSmack could be a better way to put it.
Kick returner Brandon Boykin Twitter-dared the Broncos Coach Petersen to kick the ball to him, which could go either way. However, Boykin has return records of his own, only one shy of an SEC record for touchdowns.
The Broncos could have some fireworks of their own with sophomore receiver Geraldo Boldewijn. He’s been looking good in preseason camp and shares the starting position with freshman Matt Miller. On the other side of the offense, junior Mitch Burroughs and senior Tyler Shoemaker have speed to burn and could blow up the Bulldogs secondary.
Georgia’s running game will be a key element to watch with Richard Samuel getting the start, but sharing those duties with Isaiah Crowell. Crowell was a coveted recruit and should bring some sparks to bear as a freshman. He has been beat up a bit, but should play, according to the Injury Report.
With Boise State looking for national recognition and Georgia needing a comeback year, this is going to be a close, high-scoring game, with a lot on the line for both teams.
As they feel each other out and get used to game conditions, expect a slow start, but once the offenses get moving, hold on.
This is probably the game of the weekend—exciting, loud and you can bet some good tailgating going on outside the Georgia Dome. What a great way to symbolically kick off the college football season.