It’s hard to imagine anyone playing a tougher schedule than the one Georgia have had to go through in the first month of the season, and things seem to get only rougher with their matchup against LSU, trying to continue their undefeated stretch.
There’s a big focus on Zach Mettenberger, who always wanted to play for Georgia, but ended up having to transfer due to legal problems, ending up as the starter for the Tigers. For Mettenberger, there’s nothing but LSU at the moment, and he hopes that the weakened Georgia defense, compared to last season, is going to be his chance to earn his biggest win of his college career.
Georgia’s offense is ranked 6th in the nation with 574 yards per game; Aaron Murray is completing 72% of his passes, while Todd Gurley has run for 377 yards, averaging 6 yards per carry and scoring four touchdowns. There isn’t something too complicated about the Bulldogs offense, but there’s simply too much talent in it to make LSU feel too confident about travelling to Sanford Stadium.
Georgia can take a serious jump up the polls if they dispatch of LSU, putting them way ahead of the rest in the SEC East in terms of quality of wins, almost erasing their opening-season loss to Clemson, especially considering the rest of their rivals in the SEC East already have one loss to their name, and Georgia have the edge over South Carolina after beating them.
LSU are quite confident about their running game and Jeremy Hill after his performance against Auburn, but their rebuilding defense has had its bad moments this season against TCU and the other SEC West Tigers, meaning that Les Miles has plenty to worry about when he faces what might be the most talented quarterback-running back duo in the nation.
If previous meetings are anything to go by, Georgia have a lot of avenging to do, after losing 42-10 to LSU the last time they met (2011 SEC Championship game). For two teams that have gone very close to winning or going to the national champions game over the last two years (LSU didn’t really show up), a win here means they’re headed in that direction again this season, with both of them probably having to go through Alabama in any case, even if they win.
Prediction – LSU’s defense is giving up 19.5 points per game, but Georgia are a very different team. Zach Mettenberger hasn’t handled big occasions all that well so far, and the kind of noise and heckling he’ll be facing is probably going to take him off his game. As good as Jeremy Hill might be, Georgia are better.