Tomorrow’s weather forecast for Athens, GA:
Essentially, it’s a slightly milder version of Kentucky. You remember Kentucky, right? More importantly, you think Kirby remembers Kentucky, right?
Fortunately, the stats favor Kirby’s mindset.
Georgia’s offensive line vs. Texas A&M’s box: Georgia has had a tough time running the ball of late but it has also gone up against some really good defenses. Texas A&M has struggled against the run this season, especially in the conference. The Aggies are allowing almost five yards per carry to SEC teams and they’ve surrendered more than 150 yards four times in six games. They’ve allowed over 225 yards twice, to Ole Miss and Mississippi State.
We all know that UGA wants to run the football and this seems like an exploitable matchup. It’s going to be a familiar look for the Bulldogs because TAMU is going to pack the box and do everything it can to win on first and second down. The Bulldogs averaged 4.5 yards per carry against Auburn when the Tigers brought the extra man down into the box and it’ll need similar success this week.
On the other side of the ball, I don’t think it’s any big secret that Smart wants to duplicate what worked against Auburn — make TAMU’s offense one-dimensional and put the load on Kellen Mond’s shoulders on a rainy day. In the games when Mond has thrown 30+ times, his passer ratings are 107.44, 134.17, 148.52 (against Arkansas, the only game in that group above his average PR), 125.65 and 126.86 and the Aggies have a losing record.
- Georgia offense: 5.02 (5th)
- Texas A&M offense: 4.69 (6th)
- Georgia defense: 3.08 (1st)
- Texas A&M defense: 4.95 (10th)
Auburn basically ditched its traditional run-oriented attack last week because Malzahn doubted his team could move the ball on the ground against the Dawgs defense. (He was right about that, by the way.) Does Jimbo take a similar tack in the rain?
Georgia stuck with the run against a formidable Auburn defensive front. Against SEC opponents, the Tigers give up about a yard-and-a-half less per rush than do the Aggies, so I don’t see Smart being any less committed to the ground game than the week before, especially considering the weather conditions.