Athens – Let’s stipulate that Georgia cannot possibly be as energized for this week’s game as it was seven days ago. Let’s also stipulate that Georgia has more talent than Ole Miss and is playing at home. It wouldn’t be surprising if the Rebels took an early lead and held it awhile. It would, however, be positively stunning if Ole Miss led after four quarters.
It’s also worth noting that Florida, which lost to Georgia, trailed Missouri 7-0 at the half in Gainesville today. (Hey, wasn’t it just yesterday than even some Georgia fans considered Florida too good to lose?) But the Gators have since forged ahead 14-7. Which doesn’t mean they’ll hang on and win. It does, however, underscore the peril inherent in post-big-game blahs.
Not to put too fine a point on it, but motivation — especially the motivation of 20-year-old amateurs — is an ephemeral thing. The Bulldogs have had a week of being slapped on the back. (Surely some of those backslappers harbored private doubts pre-Jax.) It would be human nature to follow an impassioned performance with a lesser one. That said …
The longer games go, the less passion matters. Contrary to popular belief, games tend to be won by the team that plays better, as opposed to harder. Again we note that Georgia has better players, which leads us to predict: Georgia 31, Ole Miss 20.
But you know me. I’ve been wrong a time or two. I’ll be here to watch and report, and I’d appreciate your company. And I thank you, as ever, in advance.
By Mark Bradley