Georgia vs Tennessee, the most anticipated regular season game of college football, is set to tee off at 3:30 this Saturday. For only the third time in Sanford Stadium history, the Bulldogs are hosting a top 5 matchup. The Vols recently jumped the Bulldogs in the first College Football Playoff rankings, but if you ask Coach Smart what he thinks about the polls, he will reply like he always does and say “rankings don’t matter.” Despite his comments, you can be assured that the Bulldogs are itching to get out there this Saturday and prove in front of a sold-out Sanford Stadium why they are worthy of that number 1 ranking.
Tennessee has been undeniably dominant this season, especially on the offensive side of the football. They have played numerous AP top 25 matchups and have prevailed in every game. Jalin Hyatt is the leading receiver in the SEC and has scored more touchdowns than Georgia Tech’s entire football team. Hendon Hooker has accounted for 25 touchdowns this season while only throwing one interception. Their offense in total is averaging 49 points a game which leads the country. The Tennessee run game is no joke either, as they run a multi-back system that is extremely efficient. On paper, it seems as if they are impossible to stop. Fortunately for us, this game is not being played on paper.
Tennessee will have to come into Sanford Stadium, one of the toughest stadiums to play in the country, and will have to outplay the defending National Champions. And, while all the talk is on Tennessee, their potent offense, and how wild Neyland Stadium looks with their adorable checkered board pattern, Georgia is sitting patiently waiting for the opportunity to show the country why they are deserving of the reputation as the best team in the country. As Coach Smart always says, “At the University of Georgia, you earn the opportunity.” In this case, Georgia has earned the opportunity to play the number 1 team in the country and expect the Bulldogs to be up to the challenge.
Now, what is the key to success for Georgia against the Vols? It’s numerous things, but all things Georgia is more than capable of doing. To start, keep their offense off the field. As addressed earlier, the Vols have the number 1 offense in the country. They want to run the ball to create space and take deep shots down the field. Georgia must keep the Volunteers in front of them and limit the big plays. Keep the crowd in the game at all times. Tennessee has only played two away games this season. There should be no environment rowdier than Athens and that is something Tennessee is not accustomed to seeing in 2022. On the offensive side of the ball, the Dawgs must establish the run. Tennessee has been impressive against the run this season, but Georgia is coming off their best rushing performance to date. The Bulldogs will need to keep their offense on the field, utilize the run game, and look to wear the Tennessee defense out. Georgia has proven they are capable of putting up points in a number of ways, so expect the Dawgs to spread the football around to keep UTK off balance.
Bulldog fans, this should be a fun one. Athens will be ready. It’s, yet again, another chance to show the country the strength and consistency of the Georgia Bulldog football team. As fans, let’s pack the house Saturday and show the country why Georgia is the face of college football.