The Georgia Bulldogs (10-1) will reignite their rivalry with the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (5-5) this Saturday, as they try to stay relevant in the CFP race. Game time is set for noon EST from Atlanta’s Bobby Dodd Stadium. The game will be featured on ABC.
The Bulldogs regained their moxie last weekend against Kentucky, blowing out the Wildcats 42-13. The running game that shut down the week before in a shocking manner versus Auburn was back on full display.
The power of Nick Chubb and shiftiness of Sony Michel led to the Bulldogs gaining 381 yards on the ground.
This has allowed them to cover up the inexperience of quarterback Jake Fromm, even though the freshman QB has a bright future.
Their defense responded well to the beating they took at Auburn by giving up sub-20 points for the ninth time this season.
The Yellow Jackets are hoping to control the clock with their own ground game, a triple-option offense that’s effective but not enough to cover up some defensive issues. They have to win to become bowl eligible, and that will be a tough mountain to climb with Georgia’s strong run defense.
After a 43-20 loss to Duke, the Yellow Jackets look as weak as ever on their defensive front. That’s not a good sign going up against such a vaunted run game. They’ll come in as 11-point underdogs.
Georgia has played several middle-of-the-road teams this year, and laid waste to all of them. Their running game has stomped through everyone not named Auburn, and that won’t change Saturday. Georgia Tech is 41st against the run, but the Bulldogs have played better (South Carolina 40th, Miss State 23rd) and still dominated.
The game is as important as ever at the line of scrimmage, and the Bulldogs have a definitive advantage there. The Jackets have always built strong o-lines during Paul Johnson’s tenure. But the Bulldogs have a top-5 defensive line to combat Tech’s one and only offensive source. If desperate, don’t expect QB TaQuon Marshall (38% completion percentage) to do any damage through the air.
At least Georgia QB Jake Fromm will be able to keep the Jackets in check. The Bulldogs should be able to skate by once again without having to try and utilize him much. But don’t be surprised if they do air it out a little more in the hopes of getting the freshman better prepared for Alabama the week after.
As for next week’s SEC Championship Game, don’t expect UGA to be thinking ahead. The Yellow Jackets beat the Bulldogs by one point last year in Athens. All the defensive starters, and several others on offense, were playing in that game and are out for revenge.
The Yellow Jackets still have enough defensive talent and time of possession to keep this game close for a half. But don’t expect them to stick around for very long when Chubb and Michel are still fresh in the 4th quarter. Add in D’Andre Swift (7.6 YPC), and there’ll be plenty of energy in the run game after the Jackets D has run out of it.