At noon on Saturday, the #6 Georgia Bulldogs open their pursuit of an SEC championship against an out-of-conference opponent, the Buffalo Bulls, between the hallowed hedges of Sanford Stadium. I’m looking forward to “Hail to Georgia,” the DawgWalk, and the “Battle Hymn” with Larry Munson’s gravelly voice heard before the first game in Sanford Stadium since his passing last Fall.
When Buffalo Has the Ball
Buffalo is going to attempt to run the ball and try to control the clock with Branden Oliver, who averaged over 100 yards rushing per game for a team that finished 3-9 last season. I just don’t see how the Bulls will be able to muster much in the running game against the starting 11 of the Georgia defense sporting one of the top 5 front 7s in college football. I think it’s pretty clear Georgia should be able to control the Buffalo running game without committing safeties to the line of scrimmage. I imagine Coach Grantham is not going to show a lot of looks on defense for Missouri on film especially with starters potentially suspended for Saturday’s game.
When Georgia Has the Ball
I said in my offensive preview that I thought David Andrews might be the most important player entering the season on the offense at center. I look for Mike Bobo to try to establish a four-headed monster at tailback with Boo Malcome, Keith Marshall, Todd Gurley & Richard Samuel. Success depends on the guys up front, and Andrews will be responsible for getting the right calls on scheme and protection for the line to operate as a cohesive unit. I hope that we’ll see an explosive offense without showing a lot on film other than that we’re going to run the ball until someone can prove they can stop it.
What Will Happen
I don’t think the outcome of the game is really in doubt. Georgia should win and win comfortably. The final margin depends on how interested the Georgia starters are in being there and how long the staff keeps players on the two-deep in the game. I look forward to seeing the freshman tailbacks and the play of the offensive line and to watching how good Malcolm Mitchell is at corner. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Bulls get a cheap score in the first half due to a special teams lapse or a big play against the defense. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see a first half performance like we saw last year against New Mexico State where we were dominant and focused from the opening kick-off. I think it’s probably going to end up somewhere in between.
If you’re going to the game, make sure you take a look at the Redcoats’ video and learn the words for Saturday.
Final Score: Georgia 48, Buffalo 10