Why Carolina is Favored in Athens
Let’s look at four key players at S. Carolina: Junior WR Alshon Jeffrey is the best Gamecock wideout ever and had 1,500 yards last season while averaging 17.2 yards per touch. Our best wideout is a freshman. Sophomore RB Marcus Lattimore was the National Freshman of the Year, and he shredded UGA for 182 yards with 42 broken tackles. Our best runner is a freshman. Junior CB Stephon Gilmore is an NFL cover corner in waiting, from a school that has been known for good pass defense above all other limited achievements throughout the Spurrier era. Our starting wideouts had 3 catches against Boise State and were never open. Freshman DE Jadeveon Clowney was the top recruit in football; he rotates in to back up two proven productive defensive ends. Our line allowed 6 sacks in the first game. All of those players could be back next year, by the way.
Georgia is 0-1 this season and 0-0 in SEC play. Georgia is just 2-2 in its last 4 games against Carolina, including 1-1 in Athens. Calling this game a must win is a bit of a stretch when realistically this is more of a can we win? I’m not sure that we can because they are so much more proven than us at this point. Murray is 6-8 as a starter; we are a shabby 14-13 in our last 27 games.
If we lose as Vegas and most prognosticators predict we will, the Dawg Nation will yell and moan and groan, while UGA will have 10 much more-winnable games left on the schedule. Miss State in Athens is doable. Florida in J-Ville and at Tennessee are doable. Auburn, Ole Miss, Georgia Tech, Kentucky, Vandy, Coastal Carolina, New Mexico State. UGA could feasibly drop this game and go 10-2 or 9-3 and win the SEC East, but would we have the winning mentality to do so? Basically, a must win.