I don’t think he’s handing out a C-minus to Clemson here ($$).
Georgia has finished each of the past two seasons first in defensive SP+, so it says something that we just witnessed the best defensive performance of the Kirby Smart era in Athens.
Even when you take Clemson’s own issues into account — new starting quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei was facing an elite defense (that had eight months to prepare) for the first time, star receiver Justyn Ross was shaking off rust after missing 2020 — this was staggering. The Tigers hadn’t been held under 5.4 yards per play or 21 points in 42 games, and they managed just 3.0 and three, respectively, in Charlotte. Clemson receiver Joe Ngata caught six passes for 110 yards, but 54 other Clemson snaps gained just 70. Uiagalelei was sacked seven times. The Dawg defense even scored the game’s only touchdown, a 74-yard pick-six from Christopher Smith.
Georgia’s defense was so dominant that it’s hard to know what else to take away from the game.
Unless he’s grading on a curve, of course.