On a night when Georgia seemed unable to stop the conference’s worst running attack for most of the game and had little success running the ball itself, quarterback Aaron Murray carried the team on his back and notched another Bulldogs victory.
Murray gave a stellar passing display, completing 30 of 38 throws for 427 yards and four touchdowns.
Murray was masterful — he completed 15 of 19 for 243 yards in the first half — and yet the game that saw him take the Bulldogs’ career touchdown record could have been even bigger for him, with at least three passes dropped plus the QB missing a wide-open receiver on another play.
Two Georgia receivers broke the century mark, with Tavarres King catching nine passes for 188 yards and Malcolm Mitchell getting back in the offensive swing of things with nine receptions for 103 yards.
But, boy, was the rest of the game ugly for UGA.
Yes, as Mark Richt likes to point out, any SEC win is a good thing, but the Dogs’ performance Saturday against Kentucky left much that needs to be improved if Georgia is going to have any hope of keeping up with a red-hot Florida team in Jacksonville next week with the SEC East title on the line.
Helping out Murray’s success was Kentucky selling out against the run — Todd Gurley led Georgia rushers with 47 yards, while Keith Marshall and Boo Malcome had 23 yards apiece — and fielding some true freshmen in the Wildcat secondary. Murray won’t have that advantage next week facing the Gators.
The positive to take into next week, besides the showing of Murray and the eight Bulldogs who caught his passes at Commonwealth Stadium Saturday night, is the fact that the past two weeks of SEC play have worked out exactly as Georgia would have scripted it: South Carolina lost twice and the Bulldogs control their own destiny. If they beat Florida and win out, they take the SEC East again.
But that looks like a mighty tall order considering these disturbing trends: Todd Grantham’s defense had another first-half meltdown and allowed the lowly Wildcats to run for a hundred more yards than they usually get; Georgia’s own much-vaunted running game was mostly missing in action for the second consecutive game; the Dogs were flagged for eight penalties, including a couple of really stupid ones (an unnecessary late hit by Bacarri Rambo being the worst); and the Dogs’ kicking troubles continued, with one PAT missed and the field goal that gave Georgia a last-second first-half lead careening off a goal post before going through the uprights.
That’s a lot to fix in just one week.
Now, it’s your turn. What did you think of Georgia’s squeaker against the SEC’s worst team?
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— Bill King, Junkyard Blawg