Athens – If we had to rank the five biggest wins of the Mark Richt Era, two would involve Auburn. The breakthrough clincher at Jordan-Hare Stadium in 2002 would be No. 1, natch, and the upset of the fifth-ranked Tigers four years later would be, I submit, No. 5. (Behind the Verron Haynes game in Knoxville, the Gator Stomp game in Jacksonville and the 2005 SEC championship over LSU.)
I mention this because a victory tonight would be huge for Georgia. It would make no impact on the BCS standings, but it could serve to jump-start the end of a season gone flat. And it would be huge because to lose to Gene Chizik in Year 1 after losing to Lane Kiffin in Year 1 would be unthinkable.
This is one of those games I figured Georgia would win when I made my predictions back in May, but Georgia isn’t as good as I thought it would be and Auburn is a tad better than I assumed. I’ll stick with the Bulldogs — no sense being wrong twice — and I will take this moment to toot my own sousaphone.
I picked Georgia to lose four games, and many among you called me crazy. Last I checked, Georgia has lost four games. I have picked every game correctly save one: I had Georgia winning in Knoxville. (And, on an unrelated matter, I also picked Georgia Tech to win the ACC title, which the Jackets can and will do two weeks hence.)
So there. It’s settled. I are a genius.
Traffic is pretty heavy for a night game — traffic for night games tends to be staggered coming in and clogged beyond measure going home — and driving in I was greeted by a strange sight. Auburn fans had lined up in the middle of East Campus Road to await the infernal Tiger Walk. This presents a problem to motorists (like yours truly) attempting to drive down East Campus Road.
I actually had to honk in the attempt to part the masses, and one Auburn guy got mad at my cheekiness. But I’m in a forgiving mood, and I’ll just chalk it up to basic culture shock over being in the big city. As we know, there are no cars in Auburn, Ala. Just tractors.
And with that, I’ll open the floor (if not the road) for discussion. I’ll be here all night, perhaps literally if Auburn folks don’t clear the streets. And I invite your participation. And I promise not to honk.