The University of Georgia will know it’s post season destination by this evening when the final College Football Playoff rankings are released. Having two losses and ranked number 8 coming into this week, it would seem that the Dawgs would be poised to bump up a spot or 2 in the final rankings, however it won’t be enough to place them in the coveted top 4. The only 2 teams that Georgia lost to, without JT Daniels and many defensive starters, just played a barn burner in the SEC Championship game, Iowa State lost to Oklahoma in the Big 12 Championship game and Cincinnati was unimpressive in their win versus Tulsa.
If logic prevails when the 13 committee members meet and decide the outcome of their final top 25 rankings, then UGA will finish 6 or 7. More importantly, Georgia will likely be headed to Atlanta to play in the Peach Bowl against Cincinnati. There is arguably no team in the country that is playing with as much balance as the Dawgs are right now, outside of Clemson. Even Alabama, when playing decent competition, is giving up tons of points and yardage. Clemson and Georgia, since JT Daniels has taken the helm at quarterback and provided both accuracy and a downfield stretch to the Georgia passing game, are stifling opponents on defense and seemingly scoring at will.
Every year when deciding the destination of teams for Bowls, especially the New Years 6, and even more during a pandemic, location and ease of travel are taken into consideration. It seems to be a consensus that asking the Bearcats to make the trip from Cincinnati to Atlanta and Mercedes-Benz Stadium basically being in UGA’s backyard is the most logical scenario. If the matchup does occur, Cinci will be bring their undefeated record in the New Years 6 matchup.
This is not exactly the matchup that every Georgia fan envisioned at the beginning of the season, but there will be intrigue. Georgia is likely going to be without several upperclassmen who decide to opt out and start their preparation for the NFL Draft. There is going to be plenty of opportunity for young, hungry Bulldogs to make a name for themselves in the bowl game. Azeez Ojulari burst onto the scene in the Sugar Bowl a couple of years ago against Texas in this scenario, however Dawg fans will hope for a better outcome in the game as a whole. JT Daniels and company will also be challenged as Cincinnati is ranked 5th in the country in total defense and only allows 15 points per game.
Can Kirby Smart and company keep the momentum going to end the 2020? They’ll get a chance to show if there is in fact a true gap in talent between the SEC and the group of 5 and games like this also lend themselves as an examination of whether an expanded playoff is warranted or not. Regardless of all of that, Georgia would like to bring in the new year with a win and have a lot to build off of with a high powered offense returning, young talent on defense emerging, and depth having been replenished with a number 3 ranked recruiting class, with transfer portal additions to come.