Could Saturday’s game against Tennessee be a case of déjà vu all over again? Urnge Nation wouldn’t mind.
Former Tennessee wide receiver Jayson Swain didn’t have any trouble deciding who to yell for during Saturday night’s Auburn-Georgia game.
“I was kind of rooting for Georgia to beat Auburn,” he said on Monday afternoon. “I wanted the Bulldogs to be feeling good about themselves this week. I wanted everybody down in Athens telling them how great they are.”
If anyone understands how hard it can be to perform at your best two weeks in a row within the Southeastern Conference — and it would be hard to perform better than Georgia did in last Saturday’s 27-6 dismantling of then-No. 8 Auburn — it might be Swain, who was a key member of a Tennessee team that upset a similarly gifted Georgia bunch between UGA’s famed hedges in 2004, winning 19-14 to snap a 17-game Bulldogs home winning streak.
Played on October 9th of that year — this weekend’s game between the Vols and Dawgs will be Oct. 10 — Georgia was coming off a resounding 45-16 rout of defending SEC champ LSU.
Tennessee, on the other hand, was trying to bounce back from a 34-10 loss to Auburn, which might explain why the Dawgs were 12.5-point favorites. Beyond that, the Vols were ranked No. 17 to UGA’s No. 3.
Now fast-forward to this season. No, UT isn’t coming off a double-digit loss, but rather a 35-12 victory over Missouri. But they are ranked 14th to Georgia’s — drum roll, please — No. 3. And the first betting lines released on Monday had the Bulldogs favored by 13 points. Twilight Zone music, anyone?
In ’04, the Dawgs swallowed the rat poison after blowing out Nick Saban’s defending national champs the week before and looked like it against the Vols.
“I can’t explain it,” said Greene, who threw a school-record five touchdown passes against LSU. “I couldn’t explain it last week, and I can’t explain it today.”
Will Smart remind his charges of the risk of history repeating? Probably until they’re sick of hearing about it.