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Dawgs vs Dogs of Miss.St 2017


Picture from t-shirts passed out to students at Ramsey center Thursday night.

For the first time in six years, the two SEC schools that associate themselves as Bulldogs will meet on the football field. A lot has changed since these two teams last met, on October 1, 2011 at Sanford Stadium. For example, the SEC has seen two members added to the conference: Missouri and Texas A&M). In addition, Alabama has claimed all 3 of the national championships for the SEC. Though, looking at Mississippi State as a football program, they’ve seen a series of great moments. The 2014 season will always be remembered by MSU fans, as College Gameday came to Starkville for the first time, beating Auburn which lead to being ranked #1 for multiple weeks. This was culminated by a trip to a New Year’s Six Bowl, heading to Miami for the Orange Bowl against Georgia Tech.
Looking back on the 2011 matchup, Georgia started off strong with an early touchdown pass from Quarterback Aaron Murray to high school teammate Orson Charles. Things were all Georgia the first half, as they built up a 21-3 halftime lead after a Malcom Mitchell touchdown catch as well as a Carlton Thomas 7- yard rushing touchdown. Georgia relied on burning the clock in the second half and safely secured a 24-10 victory over Dan Mullen’s Bulldogs. Though, it must be noted that Dan Mullen has the only Mississippi State victory over Georgia since 1974. Which happened the previous year on September 25, 2010 in Starkville with MSU winning 24-12.
Just like 2010, Mullen’s 2017 team comes into this game with a lot of confidence after beating #12 LSU badly last week, 37-7 in Starkville. Quarterback Nick Fitzgerald has a ton of confidence in his second year starting and would love to come into Athens and beat the team he grew up cheering for. (From Richmond Hill, GA) Fitzgerald is known a dual threat QB, which Mullen is known for coaching to their fullest potential. (Tim Tebow, Cam Newton, Dak Prescott) On the flip side, Kirby Smart’s defenses have struggled with mobile Quarterbacks during his time at Alabama & Georgia. For example, (Johnny Manziel, Nick Marshall, Tim Tebow, Chad Kelly). Given these examples, it will be crucial for Roquan Smith & Natrez Patrick to act as a spy on Fitzgerald, containing him from getting to the outside. Georgia did a very good job of this two weeks ago in South Bend against Brandon Wimbush. To put it in perspective, Wimbush rushed for 1 yard against Georgia while having 106 & 207 yards in the other two games this season. Georgia’s ability to cover from sideline to sideline as well as Trent Thompson & company’s ability to stuff the middle is why I believe Georgia has the slight advantage in this game. This will be Jake Fromm’s first action in SEC play, but the return of Sony Michel as well as the emergence of Terry Godwin & Javon Wims is why I believe Georgia wins a tight game 24-20.
God Bless & Go Dawgs!
Tyler Agee

UGA vs Samford 2017

This weekend the Georgia Bulldogs return to the familiar confines of Sanford Stadium to continue non-conference play against the fellow bulldogs of Samford University. Samford is a football team that comes from Birmingham, Alabama with a 2-0 record: wins against Kennesaw State 28-23 & West Alabama 49-41 (CBS Sports). They are most known for Bobby Bowden playing there, though current Florida State Head Coach Jimbo Fisher played for Samford as well.
Samford is led by head coach Chris Hatcher, a man in his third year with the Bulldogs after stints that included Valdosta State & Georgia Southern. In fact, Dawgnation wrote an article alluding to Kirby Smart starting his coaching career under Hatcher at Valdosta State in 2000. The article also notes how Kirby was referred for the job by former teammate Will Muschamp, receiving a salary of $8,000, compared to making over $8,000 per day at UGA now.
Given that Georgia is playing a FCS program, there are not any areas you look at and say Georgia must win this battle to win the game. Instead, most fans and the coaches view today’s game as an opportunity to clean up areas that are struggling. First, not having 127 yards in penalties like last week against Notre Dame is a start. I’ve never seen six hands to face/facemask penalties by one team in a game before. Another area for improvement is catching the football, not just the wide receivers but also the defensive backs, as Georgia dropped two potential pick sixes last week and have zero interceptions through two games. Finally, Georgia’s offensive line during run blocking plays needs to improve. They are still struggling to open holes as well as missing their assignments. Evidenced twice last week on third and short situations, where the left side of the line missed the Notre Dame defensive end.

A 7:30 kickoff should allow fans yet another Saturday of extended tailgating, something Georgia fans haven’t experience with 3 or more consecutive night games since 1994 ( The coaches and fans hope the game will be out of reach by the third quarter so that the younger guys can get meaningful snaps to showcase themselves. Though, I have a feeling the starters will still be in the game during the 4th Quarter. Under Offensive Coordinator Jim Chaney, Georgia has yet to score over 35 points in a game during his 15 games as coach at Georgia. Those 35 points occurred against Louisiana Lafayette last year and 7 of those 35 points came by a punt return, not an offensive score. Fans are hopeful this is the game Georgia finally scores over 40 points for the first time in 25 games (48-6 vs Southern in 2015) though I’m under the “I’ll see it when I believe it”. I see the final score being a Georgia win along the lines of 35-7.

God Bless & Go Dawgs!
Tyler Agee

UGA @ Notre Dame 2017

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Picture From UGA Football Live Twitter Account

September 9th, 2017 at 7:30 PM in South Bend, Indiana: Georgia @ Notre Dame, a game that has been circled on the calendars of Georgia fans since the home and home series was announced in June 2014, is finally upon us. For many Dawg fans, this game was viewed as a once in a lifetime trip to one of college football’s most iconic stadiums. From Touchdown Jesus, to the Golden Dome, and of course the Play Like A Champion Sign, Notre Dame has a certain prestige that few programs can match. Also, acknowledge the fact that these two programs have only met on the gridiron once before; a thrilling 17-10 victory for Georgia on January 1, 1981 at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans where Georgia claimed the 1980 National Championship. A game where Scott Woerner intercepted two passes, Herschel Walker scored two rushing touchdowns, and one crucial fumbled kickoff return by Notre Dame on their own one-yard line. If Georgia wants to win this time around, it will most likely need a different recipe for success.

True Freshman Quarterback Jake Fromm has unexpectedly been handed the keys to the starting job this weekend in South Bend. As you all know, Jacob Eason sprained his LCL in the first quarter last week against App State, resulting in Fromm subbing in to throw for 143 yards and 1 touchdown. Though, this week will likely present Fromm’s toughest challenge in his entire athletic career. Any first start is difficult, but few have been of the likes of a primetime game in front of 77,000 fans on the road at night. Some Quarterbacks have had successful wins in their first start being on the road, Hutson Mason: UGA at Georgia Tech 2013, Matt Flynn: LSU at Mississippi State 2007, while others have struggled, Jordan Jefferson: LSU at Arkansas 2008, Brad Kaaya: Miami at Louisville 2014, Cole Stoudt: Clemson at Georgia 2014 to name a few. So, what does Fromm have to do join the first category rather than the latter? First, I think Fromm must manage the game from the standpoint of knowing the plays and calling audibles at the line of scrimmage. The crowd will be deafening, unlike anything he heard playing high school football in Warner Robins. Second, I think it’s important for Fromm to use up-tempo offense where he can get in rhythm throwing short patterns like the slant route from last week. Finally, Fromm must be disciplined with his eyes during his progressions. There cannot be any instances on locking in on his first target like last week, because triple coverage against Notre Dame results in an interception, not a touchdown like App State.

Obviously, there are other units from Georgia that must play well, in fact it is most likely necessary for them elevate their play to take the load of Fromm’s shoulders. It all starts up front with Georgia’s offensive line, because without them opening holes for Chubb and Michel, Georgia has no shot of winning. It is still unknown whether Right Guard Solomon Kindley will play, if not Georgia will rely on two upperclassman Kendall Baker or Dyshon Sims. Georgia should have the advantage in this area, as Notre Dame is breaking in new defensive lineman as well as their Coordinator Mike Elko from Wake Forest. Yes, their first game was against Temple, but all reports are the defense looked improved from last year’s D Coordinator Brian VanGorder (former UGA D Coordinator 2001-2004)

Finally, instead of doing keys to the game; I’m going to focus on something no sports analyst I’ve seen, has brought up this week regarding Fromm starting. Fromm is a similar quarterback to what Georgia has had for the last 15 years, under center utilizing play-action pass with occasional shotgun work. That contrasts what Eason did in high school in Washington as well as most of last year, having Chubb run from the shotgun mainly. Having watched Nick Chubb, the last 3 ½ seasons I can say very confidently he does a lot better from the I-formation with a fullback in front of him. I believe there is a reason, last year, Chubb’s best game was his 222 yards 2 touchdown performance in the opener at the Georgia Dome against North Carolina. Do you know who started that game? Greyson Lambert, a

Quarterback who lined up under center with Christian Payne right behind him most of the game. Yes, Eason threw the ball better in that game which helped prompt him into the starting role from there on out, but I firmly believe Chubb having to alter his style to running primarily out of the shotgun caused his per rush average to go from 8 yards to 5 after that game. So, with a Quarterback under center more frequently this upcoming Saturday, I would not be surprised to see an improved rushing attack from Chubb, topping at least 100 yards.

Yes, Georgia will be losing ground at the Quarterback spot in experience this Saturday, but I firmly believe this small change in formation could be the key ingredient to Georgia upsetting the Irish on Saturday night. Notre Dame right now is favored by 4 ½ points in Vegas, though the line has moved down from 6 ½ from Tuesday. With that being said, my head tells me Georgia will find a way to win, but my heart knows it’s very difficult to insert a true freshman Quarterback on the road for his first start and win. I see Notre Dame winning the game along the lines of 21-13. Obviously, I hope I am wrong, having invested time and money to fly north this weekend to see the Dawgs play at Notre Dame Stadium in person. No matter what, I am excited to see this historic campus and stadium under the lights. It will be a once in a lifetime trip, so I am going to soak it all in with all the other Georgia fans who are making the trip.

God Bless & Go Dawgs!

Tyler Agee

UGA vs Appalachian State 2017

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Photo by ESPN

The 2017 football season kicks off for the Georgia Bulldogs under the lights this Saturday evening against the Appalachian State Mountaineers at 6:15 pm. In fact, this will be Georgia’s first opening home game to start after 6pm since the 2007 opening game against the Oklahoma State Cowboys, which the Dawgs won 35-14. Starting that day for Georgia at Quarterback, was a true sophomore Matthew Stafford, a five-star recruit who had an up and down freshman season. Stafford went 18/24 for 234 yards and 2 passing touchdowns that day against the Cowboys a decade ago. The reason for mentioning this is ten years later Georgia is in a similar predicament. Again, the starting Quarterback for the Dawgs will be a true sophomore quarterback who was a five-star recruit in high school: Jacob Eason. Comparing numbers, Eason had a better freshman campaign, 16 passing touchdowns to Stafford’s 7, 8 interceptions to Stafford’s 13, and yards, 2,430 to 1,749. Though the one area Stafford has the edge was a 9-4 record, including 3 straight victories over ranked opponents (at #5 Auburn, #16 Georgia Tech, & vs #14 Virginia Tech in the Peach Bowl) to Eason’s 8-5 record.

On Saturday against the Mountaineers Eason should face an easier opponent than Stafford did ten years ago, though App State should not be taken lightly. As everyone knows, the same day Stafford beat Oklahoma State, Appalachian State had the college football upset of the century with a 34-32 win at the Big House over #5 Michigan. As well as last year, as App State almost beat #9 Tennessee in Neyland Stadium, losing in Overtime 20-13. Coming into this year, App State returns 6 starters on defense that only allowed 18 points a game last year headlined by Eric Boggs who posted 3 INT’s. In addition, their offense is headlined by senior Quarterback Taylor Lamb, who is from Georgia and whose Grandfather worked in the Georgia Athletic Department for many years. Lamb is 27-5 as a starter, with experience playing in SEC stadium environments, so it’s crucial for Georgia to take this player and team seriously.

To piggyback off that, the three keys to the game must start with Georgia’s offensive line. It has been the most talked about unit this offseason as there will be three new starters on the offensive line. Left Tackle is set with Isaiah Wynn, a two-year starter, followed by new Left Guard Pat Allen out of Maryland, Lamont Gaillard at Center moving over from Right Guard, New Right Guard Solomon Kindley or Dyshon Sims, and Right Tackle true freshman Andrew Thomas. The reason for mentioning these five big uglies is if Georgia can’t get the run game going with Chubb & Michel, it opens the door for App State to control the time of possession and stay in the game. The second key is turnover margin, as in any game. Just use App State’s first game last year, where Tennessee fumbled the ball in Overtime but recovered it in the endzone for a touchdown, that ended up being the difference in the upset quest. Finally, Georgia’s defensive line push needs to be up to par on Saturday. Georgia’s defensive line is expected to be a strength with Trent Thompson poised for a potential All-American season as a junior after a three-sack performance in the bowl game against TCU. Though, App State has a more balanced offense approach compared to the horned frogs, averaging 251 yards rushing last year.

With all that being said, I expect Georgia to be focused for the first game as they finally get to play an opponent after a long 9-month hiatus. The Vegas point spread is 13 ½ points and I expect Georgia to cover, winning 34-17 in a game where the starters should play into the 4th quarter.

God Bless & Go Dawgs!

Tyler Agee

UGA vs GT 2016

For the 111th time, the Georgia Bulldogs will face off against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets for the state title of best team. For Georgia, it is about the seniors last game at Sanford Stadium and wanting to go out with a win. For Georgia Tech, it is about reclaiming the Governor’s Cup trophy and winning in Athens for a second straight time. Both teams come into the game with a 7-4 record as well as well as going 4-4 in conference play. In addition, the Dawgs and Yellow Jackets have each faced two common opponents on their schedule this far, North Carolina and Vanderbilt. Georgia and Tech each went 1-1 in those games, winning against the opposite teams. Georgia opened their year with a 33-24 win against North Carolina while Tech lost in Chapel Hill to the Tar Heels 48-20. On the other hand, Tech beat Vanderbilt at home 38-7 while Georgia lost 17-16 back in October.
Looking at the series history of the Dawgs and Jackets, Georgia has done well in this series of late. Winning 13 of the last 15 meetings or 20 of the last 25 games. During that span, Georgia has two separate 7 game winning streaks (1991-1997 and 2001-2007). Though it should be noted that 4 of Georgia Tech’s 5 wins since 1991 have come at Sanford Stadium in Athens. Including the last meeting in 2014, with Tech winning in Overtime 30-24. It happened after Tech kicker Harrison Butker kicking a game-tying 53 yard field goal at the end of regulation and Georgia Quarterback Hutson Mason throwing a pick in Overtime to seal the victory for Tech. Last year’s game in Atlanta was a low-scoring affair with Georgia prevailing 13-7 behind Sony Michel’s 149 yard performance and Georgia’s defense forcing 3 turnovers. The last play of the game was a Malkom Parrish interception, which ended up being the last play for head coach Mark Richt, finishing 13-2 in the state rivalry. For Kirby Smart to have similar success, let us look at the 3 keys to the game.
The first key will be Georgia’s ability to control time of possession much like the Auburn game, in fact Georgia Tech’s defense is on the field for an average of 10 more plays a game than their offense. So, Georgia’s ability to convert third downs to keep the chains moving will prevent Justin Thomas and company from finding a rhythm. It also helps that Georgia Tech’s offense is 112th in the country in first downs, with only 195 on the season. The second key will be Georgia’s ability to contain Tech’s A backs which line up on the edge. Georgia has done well on stuffing the run up the middle but not so much on the edge. Tech’s motions with their A backs can cause confusion, especially when both run to the same side as one acts as a lead blocker for the other. So, Georgia will need good games from both Davin Bellamy and Lorenzo Carter in order to win. Finally, Georgia needs to continue to do well in the passing game against Tech, who has the 88th pass defense in the country as well as being 108th in the country in sacks with only 16. Look for Eason to connect with Riley Ridley and Javon Wims on the deep ball, both whom Eason is more comfortable with in the 12th game.
With all of that being said, I expect both teams to run the ball a lot, meaning the clock will be running more, thus each possession is crucial. The line for the game is 4 ½ for Georgia which seems about right, look for Georgia to win a close ballgame 21-17 and improve to 8-4 on the regular season. With a win against Tech, Georgia would improve to 2-2 on the season against their 4 biggest rivals (Tennessee, Florida, Auburn, and Tech). Georgia has beaten at least 2 of the 4 in every year since 2001, so Georgia needs a victory on Saturday to keep the streak alive. In fact, it would be the 4th time in the last ten years (2006, 2009, 2015, & 2016) that Georgia would start off 0-2 (losses to Tennessee and Florida) and finish 2-0 (wins against Auburn and Tech). So lets hope Kirby Smart starts off on the right foot and beats Georgia Tech in his first year.

God Bless and Go Dawgs!
Tyler Agee


For the second straight week, the Louisiana Lafayette Rajin Cajuns travel to the state of Georgia for their game. Last week, Lafayette won down in Statesboro 33-26 against the Georgia Southern Eagles. The number two is a common theme here, as this will be the second matchup between these schools all-time. The previous meeting was to kick off the 2010 season, with UGA winning 55-7 in Aaron Murray’s first game as Quarterback. Finally, two of Louisiana Lafayette’s losses this year have come in multiple overtimes, so they are just a few plays away from being over .500 rather than 4-5 overall.

Now to the keys of the game, the main key will be the secondary of Georgia limiting the Rajin Cajuns in the vertical passing game. Quarterback Anthony Jennings has seen his fair share of SEC defenses, having been the former starting quarterback of LSU. Jennings number one target is Wide Receiver Keenan Barnes, who already has 6 touchdowns on the year. So look for Malkom Parrish to cover Barnes as much as possible to eliminate that threat. The second key will be Georgia’s ability to call plays away from Cajuns Freshman Linebacker Joe Dillion, who already has 6 sacks on the season. He’s arguably the best middle linebacker Georgia has faced since Vanderbilt’s Zach Cunningham, and we all know how that turned out. Finally, Georgia will need to continue to stuff the run up the middle. Louisiana Lafayette’s leading Tailback is only averaging 4.8 yards per carry. So if the Dawgs continue their positive trend of late, I do not see this being a very close game unlike every other game this year. There is room to be cautious, as Georgia only beat Nicholls State by 2, but I think Georgia will be more focused this time around for a noon kick. I see Georgia winning this game by a score of 35-14. Hopefully the fans enjoy seeing the black jerseys for the first time since the 2008 Alabama game, and lets hope the outcome is far better than that night.

God Bless and Go Dawgs!
Tyler Agee

UGA vs Auburn 2016

Before we talk football, I hope we all remember this is Veterans Day weekend, so thank you to all of the men and women who have served in our military. Festivities for veterans day weekend include a flyover before the game which is always a very cool moment.

Now to the game, the Georgia Bulldogs welcome a top ten opponent in the Auburn Tigers to Sanford Stadium. A place the visiting Tigers/War Eagle/Plainsmen/whatever mascot has not won since the 2005 game. In that game the Tigers converted a 4th and 10 to Wide Receiver Devin Aromashadu who took the ball all the way to the Georgia one yard line. The Tigers converted a game winning field goal to win 31-30, though the Dawgs clinched the SEC East the next week. For the more recent meetings, Georgia has won the last two games against Auburn. Last year at Jordan-Hare Stadium, Georgia came from behind in the second half to win 20-13 behind two Isaiah McKenzie touchdowns. That win catapulted Georgia to the lead in the all-time series 56-55-8. Winning ten of the last fifteen matchups against Auburn helped Georgia catch up. The most famous of those ten wins this century would have to be the 2007 game where Georgia ran out in black jerseys for the first time. That was the loudest I’ve ever heard Sanford Stadium as the Dawgs fed of their energy to win 45-20 behind tailback Knowshon Moreno’s two touchdowns.

Now towards this matchup, the biggest key will be Georgia’s ability to load the box to stop Auburn’s Kamryn Pettway. Pettway has run for at least 123 yards in every game he has played in except the LSU game. Georgia will have to force Sean White to beat them through the air. The second key will be Georgia’s ability to convert touchdowns in the red zone. Last week against Kentucky Georgia had to settle for 3 field goals, which will not cut it against Auburn, who has the 16th best red zone defense in America. Finally, Jacob Eason is going to have to convert the deep ball this game. Auburn’s Defensive Line is stout, so they’ll be stuffing Nick Chubb and Sony Michel I expect based on Georgia’s Offensive Line. So Eason will have to win this game on his own, even if he doesn’t convert them all, hopefully Auburn will be called for a few pass interferences. Auburn is 6th in the country in fewest penalty yards per game so hopefully Eason will exploit them this week.

When it’s all said and done, I expect Auburn to cover the spread of ten points and win 31-20. I think Georgia has been doing well on the interior rush defense but expect Pettway to follow his tendency to bounce it outside and break a few long runs. I fully expect Auburn to control the time of possession and put the game away in the second half. If Georgia does lose, it would be the first time since 1962 that Georgia has not won a SEC home game in a season. That type of statistic does not speak well of Kirby Smart’s first year as head coach as well as the overall state of the program. As always, I hope I am wrong when I pick against Georgia, but my faith in the upset happening is only about 20%.

God Bless and Go Dawgs!
Tyler Agee

UGA vs Florida 2016

The 2016 edition of the World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party takes place tomorrow at 3:30 PM along the banks of the St. John’s River. It’ll will be Kirby Smart’s first time being a head coach in the rivalry after going 1-3 as a player (1995-1998) and 0-1 as an assistant coach at Georgia in 2005. Smart will be facing an old co-worker, in Jim McElwain, who worked with Kirby as an assistant coach at Alabama from 2008-2011.
McElwain is 1-0 in this annual rivalry after a 27-3 win last year in Jacksonville. Smart will have his work cut out for him to start off 1-0 in this series, as Vegas has the Dawgs as a 7 ½ point underdog. Though, this is familiar territory for UGA in this game as they’ve been the underdog quite often since 1990 when Steve Spurrier took over for the Gators. Three times in the last twenty years Georgia has won the game outright when being at least 7 ½ point underdogs. In 1997, the Dawgs rode the coattails of tailback Robert Edwards four touchdowns in a huge upset win 37-17 against the defending national champion Gators. Ten years later on October 27, 2007, history repeated itself, as Georgia infamously rushed the field in the first quarter after running back Knowshon Moreno’s 1 yard TD run. Moreno carried that momentum for the rest of the game with 188 yards and 2 more touchdowns in a huge upset win 42-30. It was the only time Mark Richt beat Urban Meyer as well as the only time Heisman trophy winner Tim Tebow lost to Georgia. Finally, exactly five years later on October 27, 2012 the #10 Dawgs upset the undefeated and #2 Gators 17-9 in my favorite Cocktail Party game. UGA forced six turnovers from the help of “Gator Killer” #29 OLB Jarvis Jones, including his game clinching forced fumble on UF’s Jordan Reed on the UGA goal line with 2 minutes left in the game. This picture says it all from the 2012 game. (
Now the three keys to the game, it all starts with how Georgia fares in the passing game versus the Gators secondary. Freshman Quarterback Jacob Eason will want to avoid the freshman tendency to stare down receivers as the Gators Jalen Tabor and Quincy Wilson are known for making interceptions. I personally think it’s key for Georgia to win the matchups in the slot. Tight End Isaac Nauta could pose as a mismatch for Florida, so look for the Tight Ends to be targeted more than usual. The second key is which UGA secondary player lines up against UF receiver Antonio Callaway. Antonio can run past anybody as he showcased in last year’s game with a 66 yard touchdown catch. I expect a safety to help in double teams on Callaway so that history does not repeat itself. Finally, Georgia is going to have to make Florida QB Luke Del Rio uncomfortable in his first cocktail party game. In Luke’s last outing two weeks ago, he threw 3 interceptions in a 40-14 win against Missouri. So, it is possible for Mel Tucker and Kirby Smart to look at that film and decide to dial up different split coverages during a play to confuse Del Rio.
With all that said, I expect Florida to do what they typically do, beat Georgia in Jacksonville. I see this as a low scoring game along the lines of 24-13 based on both defenses being better than the offenses they are going against. I just cannot convince myself UGA will beat Florida after losing at home to Derek Mason and Vanderbilt. This will be my third trek down to Jacksonville for this rivalry, in 2010 I saw Aaron Murray and Georgia lose in OT 34-31 in Urban Meyer’s last year. Then I was at the game last year known as the “Faton Bauta game” in which Georgia again lost 27-3. I’ll be cheering on the Dawgs tomorrow from EverBank Field hoping “third time’s the charm”.
God Bless and Go Dawgs!
Tyler Agee

UGA vs Vanderbilt 2016

The Georgia Bulldogs return home this week to face the 2-4 Vanderbilt Commodores. Since 1990, Vanderbilt has been the Homecoming game for Georgia every even year except 2012 (Ole Miss). Twice during that span the Commodores have spoiled Homecoming with upset wins in 1994 43-30 and 2006 24-22. The game ten years ago came down to a go ahead Field Goal as time expired for a Vandy win after UGA’s Tony Taylor had the go ahead pick six earlier in the fourth quarter to make the score 22-21.
A more recent recap of the series shows that Georgia has won the last 2 meetings, 31-14 last year, and 44-17 in 2014 here in Athens. The 2013 matchup would be voted as the most interesting game in the last 5 years when Georgia led 27-14 only to lose 31-27. Many UGA fans will argue how targeting lost them the game that day in Nashville. It was the first year of the rule and back then even if the targeting penalty was taken away, the offense still received an automatic first down. With the Dawgs up 27-24, Vandy faced a 4th down late in the game. QB Paton Robinette threw a pass over the middle and UGA Linebacker Ramik Wilson struck the receiver to knock the ball loose. Georgia was celebrating a turnover on downs and a close fought win on the road, however Wilson was flagged for targeting the receiver. The replay officials overturned the targeting call but Vandy was still awarded a 15 yard penalty and first and goal. Needless to say the Commodores scored a Touchdown to win the game 31-27, another “how did we lose this game?” question in 2013 (at Clemson, at Auburn, and vs Nebraska in Bowl Game also fit that category in 2013.)

For Derek Mason’s squad to upset UGA on Homecoming like it did ten years ago, they will have to excel in the 3 keys to the game. One, Vandy Linebacker Zach Cunningham will have to stuff the Georgia running game. Zach lead the Dores in tackles, tackles for loss, and sacks last year as a sophomore. Last week UGA’s offensive line was able to get to the second level of blocking USC’s linebackers which is why the Dawgs had over 300 yards rushing. For Vandy to not let this happen again, Cunningham is going to have to lead the Vandy Defense or Chubb may run for more than his 189 yards in last year’s game. Second, QB Kyle Shurmur needs to connect on deep ball opportunities to avoid Georgia stacking the box against tailback Ralph Webb. Shurmur has connected with freshman receiver Kalijia Lipscomb for two of his three touchdown passes so far this season. Lipscomb will have the opportunity to get passed UGA’s corners who have let receivers get behind them in every single game. Finally, Vanderbilt will need to have a trick play up their sleeve for momentum’s sake. Maybe a fake punt or onside kick to sway the momentum from the home team, because if not it could get ugly. UGA may only be a 13 ½ point favorite in Vegas, but the talent gap between the two teams is large.

I expect Georgia to follow the same game plan as last week, run the ball and make the opposing average quarterback hurt you. Georgia is at home and desperately wants to get above .500 in conference play, which is why I see UGA winning 35-10. Though, you always have to be aware of noon kickoffs at home with the crowd piling in late and the team coming out not energetic. Just say the words “Nicholls State”
God Bless and Go Dawgs!
Tyler Agee