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Georgia's Kirby Smart on Oregon HC Dan Lanning: 'He Knows We Have Better Players'

Adam WellsSeptember 4, 2022

Todd Kirkland/Getty Images

Georgia head coach Kirby Smart was feeling good following his team's 49-3 victory over No. 11 Oregon in Saturday's season opener at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Speaking to reporters after the game, Smart took a little dig at Oregon's roster while complimenting head coach Dan Lanning.

"He's gonna do a really good job at Oregon," Smart said of his former defensive coordinator. "He's relentless. They'll bounce back from this, and he knows we have better players. He'll never say that, but he knows we've got better players."

It was likely meant as a playful comment, as Lanning worked on Smart's staff with the Bulldogs for four seasons before getting the Oregon job in December.

One of the most-hyped games on the Week 1 schedule, Georgia had no issues in its first test as the reigning national champion. The offense scored touchdowns on each of their first seven drives and racked up 571 yards of total offense, including a career-high 368 through the air from Stetson Bennett.

ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo

Georgia is the 3rd team in the past 15 seasons to score a touchdown on each of its first six drives against a ranked opponent, joining Ohio State vs Michigan State last season (first seven) and South Florida vs Navy in 2016 (first six). <a href="https://t.co/ARholIUOKj">pic.twitter.com/ARholIUOKj</a>

Any concern that losing a record 15 players to the NFL draft would put a dent in the Bulldogs' talent pool was quickly dispelled.

Senior running back Kenny McIntosh, who ranked sixth on the team with 242 receiving yards last year, is nearly halfway to that total after one game in 2022 (117).

The defense held Oregon quarterback Bo Nix, making his first start after transferring from Auburn, to 173 passing yards on 37 attempts. He threw interceptions on consecutive possessions in the first half.

About the only positive takeaway for the Ducks is they did have success running the ball with 140 yards on 31 carries.

There was never any doubt Georgia was the more talented team coming into the game. Smart and his staff do a fantastic job recruiting every year. They have had multiple years to build up this program with star players and depth.

Lanning is in his first season with the Ducks. They will likely be fine the rest of the year when they aren't playing arguably the best team in the country.

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