The 9-2 Georgia Bulldogs Needed a Break
9-2 is a very respectable won-loss record. However, due to very high preseason expectations, injuries, a challenging schedule, and an underachieving defense, 2008 has been a frustrating season for the Georgia Bulldogs.
After playing six straight weeks, the 9-2 Bulldogs needed a break before hosting Georgia Tech on Nov. 29. It has been a disappointing season for Georgia, which started No. 1 in the nation, but is now looking at a trip to the Capital One Bowl. Georgia got blown out by Alabama and Florida. In these last two weeks, the Bulldogs edged Kentucky and Auburn.
Did you know that the Bulldogs lead the SEC in total offense with 429 yards per game and 31.2 points per game? QB Matthew Stafford, RB Knowshon Moreno, and WR A.J. Green lead the SEC in passing, rushing and receiving respectively. WR Mohamed Massaquoi is having an outstanding season, too, ranking third in the conference in receiving yards.
This disappointing Georgia defensive unit ranks 10th in the SEC, giving up 23.8 points per game. Georgia’s defense has all the talent except an intimidating pass rusher and therefore, the Bulldogs have struggled against the pass. LB Rennie Curran leads the SEC with 98 tackles.
WR A.J. Green has caught game-winning touchdowns the past two weeks, leads the SEC in receiving yards (887) and receiving yards per game (80.6). QB Matthew Stafford is completing 61 percent of his passes and leads the SEC with 254.7 passing yards per game. Stafford has thrown 17 TDs and eight interceptions. RB Knowshon Moreno leads the SEC in rushing (113.1 yards per game) and has run for 15 TDs. LB Rennie Curran leads the SEC with 98 tackles.
RB Caleb King has not had a carry in the last two games and RB Richard Samuel gained just four yards on three carries against Auburn. WR Mohamed Massaquoi ranks third in the SEC with 66.4 receiving yards per game, two spots behind teammate A.J. Green.
Georgia Tech just finished an impressive dominating victory over Miami. Georgia will have their hands full when these Yellow Jackets invade Athens, GA, next week. Will the Bulldogs’ underachieving defense be well-coached and therefore, be well-prepared to contain Georgia Tech’s effective option offense? I hope so, but I’m also sad to report that I can’t count on it.
The Silver Fox Early Forecast: Georgia Tech 24, Georgia 23
But don’t bank on my initial prediction either, which I expect to revise after feasting on turkey and the trimmings.
Sources: ajc.com, onlineathens.com, and rivals.com
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--Gordon T. Watts
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