Bulldawg Illustrated intern Savannah Richardson, a senior in the Grady College of Journalism at UGA, takes a look at Saturday’s game between Georgia and Auburn. Who gets ‘The Bone’ for having the edge in Saturday’s SEC Championship?
OFFENSE DAWG BONE: TIE
Georgia gets the Dawg Done this week because it will redeem itself after its worst offensive performance of the season. The last time Georgia played the Tigers, the offense had no motivation or momentum. Jake Fromm must keep his composure and lead this team. Georgia must find a way to move on this tough defensive front, and I believe they do. However, for this to happen and Georgia to win the game, it’s offensive line must give Fromm time to make decisions and keep the momentum on the Bulldog’s side. With Auburn’s Kerryon Johnson questionable for the game, I felt comfortable giving the Dawg Bone to the Bulldogs. If Fromm and Georgia’s offense find a way to stay on the field and keep the momentum, they’ll defeat the Tigers.
DEFENSE DAWG BONE: AUBURN
The Defense Dawg Bone goes to Auburn’s defensive line. As one of the best in the country, it’s hard not to pick them. The unit stopped the top two SEC rushing offenses to 46 and 211 yards on the ground. Led by Derrick Brown and company, the Tiger defense only allows opponents to complete 33 percent of third downs. If Auburn’s defensive line continues its success as it has the last few weeks, they will shut down Georgia’s offense and win the game.
SPECIAL TEAMS DAWG BONE: TIE
It’s hard to give either the special teams bone when both teams have weapons like Daniel Carlson and Mecole Hardman. Hardman is the No. 1 kickoff return player in the SEC averaging 27.33 a return. Nationally he ranks as the No. 11 kick off return player. He sets up Georgia for better field position offensively and should break one to the house soon.
Carlson is a special team’s coordinators dream. He’s made 77.8 percent of his field goals with a long of 54 yards. Carlson’s confidence when he kicks is what coordinators want all kickers to have. He’s made 4-7 from 50 plus yards and averages 9.7 points a game so look for the Tigers to use him if they need to.
COACHING DAWG BONE: Georgia
Kirby Smart reaches Atlanta in his second season, with a team that is hot. He’s gotten this group of seniors to buy into his process after losing their head coach, having multiple coordinators and just not having an identity. Smart doesn’t let this team quit; he’s taught them that they are as good as the rest, and despite one loss, it doesn’t define them. There is a mentality about this team that will set up the future of Georgia football and it’s all thanks to the bond between Smart and these seniors. I said it before, Kirby Smart will get the coaching Dawg Bone for the rest of the season and he’s shown why.
OVERALL DAWG BONE: Georgia
After completing the revenge tour in Atlanta last week, the Bulldogs added one more to that list. Georgia’s suffered one loss this season, an embarrassing one against the Tigers a few weeks back. I expect an all-out grudge match and one of the best SEC Championships the college football world seen since 2012. Georgia gets this Dawg Bone because it’s on a neutral site, where Georgia fans will unite and make Mercedes-Benz Stadium a second home. Vengeance is this week’s word, and I expect the Bulldogs to come out mad and ready to eat some Tiger meat.
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