Georgia Football: 5 Reasons Its SEC East Hopes Are Still Alive

Ross DurrenceCorrespondent IIOctober 2, 2011

Georgia Football: 5 Reasons Its SEC East Hopes Are Still Alive

0 of 5

    After the loss to South Carolina, many Georgia fans were clamoring for Mark Richt's removal.  Hope looked bleak, and it appeared Georgia was destined for another trip to a subpar bowl game.

    That was three weeks ago, however.

    Since the heartbreaking loss to the Gamecocks, Georgia has won three straight, including a clean sweep of the state of Mississippi the last two weeks.

    With recent losses by Florida and South Carolina, the SEC East race is wide open.

    Keep tabs on the Bulldogs, everyone.

South Carolina Will Lose at Least Two More SEC Games

1 of 5

    Marcus Lattimore has looked pedestrian in South Carolina's last two games, averaging less than four yards a carry against two subpar defenses.

    On top of that, the Gamecocks aren't exactly loaded at the quarterback position with Steven Garcia seemingly on the verge of a four-turnover game every time he takes the field.

    With back-to-back-to-back road dates with Mississippi State, Arkansas and Tennessee, plus a home matchup with the Gators, look for South Carolina to struggle mightily the second half of the year.

    My prediction?  Carolina finishes no better than 5-3 in the conference.

Georgia's Defense is Coming Alive

2 of 5

    Todd Grantham is earning his pay in Athens this season.

    Over Georgia's last four games, his defense has allowed an average of 10 points a game and given up only 225 yards per contest.

    Georgia's playmakers definitely look more comfortable under Grantham's system this season, leading to more picks and sacks early in the season.

    Just wait until Alec Ogletree returns.

Florida Could Have a Serious Quarterback Issue

3 of 5

    As if getting trounced at home by Alabama isn't bad enough, Florida suffered another huge blow near the end of the first half.

    Quarterback John Brantley went down awkwardly in what appeared to be an ugly leg injury.

    Freshman Jeff Driskel led a completely stagnant Gator offense in the second half, and if Brantley's injury is anything near serious, the Gators will be in serious trouble.

    Five weeks until the Cocktail Party.  The question is...will Brantley be back?

Georgia's Upcoming Schedule Looks Great on Paper

4 of 5

    Georgia's toughest games were front-loaded in their schedule.

    Left on the docket are four games in the state of Georgia, and two very winnable games in Knoxville and Nashville.

    The toughest remaining game for the Bulldogs is their annual date with Florida in Jacksonville, and should they win that, they will be front-runners to represent the East in the Georgia Dome.

    Thank the Lord the Dawgs don't have to play Alabama or LSU this season.

Isaiah Crowell is the Real Deal

5 of 5

    Isaiah Crowell was one of the highest touted recruits in recent history, and has made an instant impact in Athens.

    Through the first five games of his collegiate career, Crowell has surpassed the 100-yard mark three times and averages 103 yards per contest.

    He is electrifying in space, and appears to be getting stronger as the season progresses.

    Look to Crowell approach the 1500 yard mark come season's end.