Kentucky finally a spark on offense last week and moved to 3-3 with a win over Arkansas. Georgia will be fuming and ready to bring everything in Athens here after a major upset loss against South Carolina dropped the Bulldogs from the ranks of the unbeatens.
By Steve Wright
Here are the three keys:
Figure out the QB situation
This one is interesting. Clearly Lynn Bowden – a slot receiver playing quarterback – was the spark that the Wildcats offense needed against the Razorbacks. He rushed for almost 200 yards and scored a pair of touchdowns in the win last week, but he was only able to pass for 78 yards on 7-of-11 passing.
Against Arkansas this worked, but Georgia is a different beast. They have been sensational against the run and allow just 73.3 yards per game. Does this mean that Sawyer Smith, a more traditional style passer, is a better bet than Bowden in this game? That is for Mark Stoops to figure out.
Stop D’Andre Swift
Georgia has playmakers all over the field. They should really, given the number of 4* and 5* recruits that Kirby Smart has taken to Athens over the last few seasons. If is D’Andre Swift, though, that must be stopped by any squad looking to beat Georgia.
Swift is fourth in the SEC in rushing, but he leads the league in yards per carry at a 6.4 yards per carry clip. The 5-foot-9, 215-pounder is able to score from anywhere on the field and he was lethal against Kentucky last year when he went for 156 yards and two scores at almost a first-down worth of yards per carry (9.8 ypc). He has to be stopped for the Cats to have any sort of shot here.
Turnovers and havoc plays
The Bulldogs will be expected to win this one. They would have been favored anyway, but many are predicting a big bounce back after the loss to the Gamecocks. The one aspect working in the favor of Kentucky is the Georgia have been horrific starters this season. They get down in games early and they then grind teams down, but that didn’t work against South Carolina.
For a team this talented they aren’t massively explosive. That will give Kentucky the chance to stay in the game early. If during that opening stretch the Wildcats can get a turnover or two, maybe some sacks or key TFLs then the Bulldogs will get frustrated and we can see another big time upset.