Playoff Update + Deeper Comparison of UGA Quarterbacks
Han Vance on Georgia football: Stetson Bennett IV will quite probably be the starter for Georgia football next season, as he has a year of eligibility remaining and right around no legit chance at ever making any team in the NFL.
The diminutive and scrappy passer, fairly dubiously listed as rounded up to a full 5-11, has an above average 17 touchdown passes to five interceptions this season with a good 64% completion percentage, after just completing a bad 55% last year with a bad six interceptions to eight touchdowns ratio. He deserved benching last year. Not this.
He is 9-0 this season after going just 3-2 last season in starts. He did not start his Arkansas opening win of 2020 and was pulled in his blowout loss to Florida, struggling and hurt (with a strain). He is improved and yet he has obvious physical limitations in seeing over tall defensive lines. He has also rushed for an overhyped by many 233 yards with one touchdown and one long run (30 yards).
If a coach’s decision quarterback change was impending, it should/would have been made games ago. Georgia is so Stetson’s team, now, but it is solidly still to-be-determined if he can and will beat powerful teams with very good records over a full season: he never has had any such wins in his whole career, and the CFP (12/31 and 1/10) will surely feature one-loss teams (Michigan, Alabama, Oklahoma State, Notre Dame are the legit remaining candidates) and quite possibly an undefeated one, Cincinnati, who led a peaking Georgia 21-7 in the state of Georgia, at the Peach Bowl, in the 4th quarter, their only loss in two years. (They deserve to get in.) JT overcame them. (May again.)
I now have a projected: Georgia-Cincy-Michigan-Oklahoma State, but Georgia has to beat Bama (to avoid slipping from #1; UGA is projected to get in as a non-champion but I’m still a little nervous about that, personally, since I think only conference champs should ever qualify – and that includes independent Notre Dame, who Cincy beat at ND – get in a conference!). Cincy still has to beat an 11-1 Houston who lost their opener then won 11 straight. Every five years or so, they are tough. Michigan has to overcome its own elated success and get past a per usual scrappy two-loss Iowa. Oklahoma State – who benefitted from an obvious pass interference non-call at home in the Bedlam Series, where they almost always lose – still has to beat a two-loss Baylor, again.
If one-loss Bama beats Georgia, they are on-pace to repeat as champs. Only once has Bama gone undefeated and won the CFP, and that was a shortened 2020 (13-0). The only other year Saban went undefeated – while winning 6-of-12 Nattys (7 overall) at Bama – was pre-CFP. The CFP champs always had a loss before Clemson-LSU-Bama of the last three years, each undefeated. Bama has only repeated once. The years Bama came into the Natty 14-0, they lost (twice) to Clemson — Georgia’s best win this year. I was there.
FOLLOW US AT: All College Report -subscribe on YouTube: All College Report
Ep2 party DAWGS in Charlotte
Ep3: the Classic Athens episode
Ep5: GEORGIA…It’s above Florida
Ep7: Epicenter Atlanta
Begin the begin again: Stetson’s best wins: 2020 no good teams by year’s end at all. 2021: Kentucky (9-3) and Arkansas (8-4). Losses: 2020 (8-4) Florida and at Bama by 15+ each; 2021: none.
JT hits an elite 72% of his passes in 2021 and has never lost at Georgia. He threw a very good 10 touchdown passes last year with just two picks, while he has an above average seven touchdown passes to three interceptions ratio this season (after completing 67% last season and going 4-0). Daniels is 7-0 as a starter at UGA, having defeated better teams in all things considered bigger games, beating in neutral site contests a tough Cincy and a defensively-tough Clemson coming off a CFP.
The rumors of Clemson’s compete collapse in 2021 were not only early, they were also exaggerated. They are 9-3 with three losses to ranked teams and beat up the best Wake Forest team ever, shutting out South Carolina 30-0 Saturday.
JT played a nearly flawless game I just rewatched last week against those same Chickens, cementing his place as UGA’s starter. …But he reaggravated a lat strain (he had in the Clemson game) then, and with this great defense, Kirby wanted a healthy Mailman – who he simply relates to more: they are both not all that talented overachieving white boys from country south Georgia [Kirby is originally from Alabama, actually] peaking at playing well in college. This is the final destination.
JT Daniels is not close to a similar creature. The 6-3 Cali guy with a lightning release, huge arm and IQ (provably, by the way) well above both our head coach and starting quarterback, skipped his senior year of the best at football ELITE high school in the country, to start for USC – as a child. At 17, he was the second Trojan freshman opening starter ever.
Georgia fans are speculating he will transfer, and he may. He seems to dig college life, and all. But sources say he can go 2nd round NFL right now.
JT has Georgia’s best win of the 2020 season (played early 1/1/2021 – this Peach is 12/30/2021 at night for all my fellow ATLiens who just love college football – I’ll go, been to many) in Cincy and 9-3 Clemson is the biggest, look at where they are ranked now – that means BEST – win of 2021. The CFP committee NEVER considers (supposedly) where teams were ranked when you played them. It’s ONLY where they are ranked now. But if you insist on looking at it as then-not-now matters, JT still has by far the best win: Clemson (#2). He still may have to save Georgia’s season and DEFINITELY should have gotten in earlier and done so in 2020.
Bama is an underdog for the first time in the CFP era Saturday (4p ATL – The World Capital [UNDISPUTED!!!] of College Football), while Kirby is 0-3 vs the Tide (0-5 vs LSU/Bama).
Georgia looks better, but they don’t give out big shiny football trophies for beating basketball school teams like Kentucky up.
In the Kirby era, Georgia has not scored at all in the 4th quarter of any of these Bama games. And this is the building…
Bennett padded his (good) 2021 stats with severely outmatched UAB, Vandy and Georgia Tech and little Charleston Southern, in extreme blowouts, Missouri was fairly similar, while rivals Auburn, South Carolina, Tennessee and Florida were – you see now at the end of the year – simply pretty bad football teams, look at their weak records.
Tennessee last year – fired coach / Auburn last year – fired coach / South Carolina last year – fired coach / Florida this year – fired coach … is the Mailman a crazy coach killer? Oh no, that’s what you guys called the talented Justin Fields on his way to making two CFPs (to Kirby’s one ever), beating Clemson badly in a CFP, after barely losing to their best team, then, of course losing to Bama again, when his dominant RB (from Marietta) was knocked out early, then soon jetting off to the cold cash millions of the first round of the NFL Draft. He’s good, like better than the Mailman, even.
Kirby does not know more about quarterbacks than the NFL guys, guys. He just doesn’t. That’s not near smart to think a limited experience at offense, career defense guy like him could.
He has been historically flaky at that spot, too, showing no loyalty at all to any QB except his (other guy like him in more ways than not) guy Fromm: Lambert was benched without losing. Eason lost his job to injury. Fields never started a game at UGA then scored 50 touchdowns his first year as a starter. Mathis was pulled after being Kirby’s choice. Bennett was benched. Daniels lost his job to injury. Some of these were no-brainers: but some of these were maybe not so smart. I will question until he accomplishes something truly valuable, outside of one conference championship in 2017.
This year it’s definitely Natty or total bust! Winning an SEC would be quite good but not great at all without a big title, with this much momentum.
Georgia has never won any close, big game in which Stetson Bennett IV was our starting quarterback, and he has matter of fact fallen apart, mentally and or physically, in his biggest two games, as Florida and Bama were SEC East and West champions last year. They WAY outscored and outplayed him, specifically at the quarterback position. That was the difference in those ballgames.
He is facing the best quarterback (Heisman favorite) and best head coach (ever) in the country.
Are Kirby and his former walkon passer ready for this bright lights BIG CITY moment?
I hope so.