Dogs, after topping Tennessee, set sights on Jackets

Coach Kirby Smart’s unbeaten and top-ranked Georgia Bulldogs will spend Thanksgiving week gearing up for their final game of the regular season, a Saturday night date with the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets in Atlanta. Kick time is 7 o’clock, with television on ABC.

From John Frierson, UGA Sports Communications...

Carson Beck threw three touchdown passes, wide receiver Dillon Bell caught one and threw one, and the No. 1-ranked Georgia football team rolled to a 38-10 win over No. 18 Tennessee on Saturday night in front of a crowd of 101,915 at Neyland Stadium.

Georgia (11-0, 8-0 SEC) was behind 7-0 in the blink of an eye after the Volunteers (7-4, 3-4) scored on the first play from scrimmage. But the Bulldogs answered with 24 straight points to take control of the game. Georgia out-gained the Vols 472-277, with Beck completing 24 of 30 passes for 298 yards. Defensive back Tykee Smith led a strong defensive effort with 10 tackles — one of seven Bulldogs with at least three stops.

With the win, Georgia completes a third straight undefeated run through SEC play. It’s the first time that’s happened in the conference since the Bulldogs did it from 1980-82. Saturday’s win extended Georgia’s school-record win streak to 28 games, tying it for the longest streak in SEC history.

The Bulldog passing attack was effective throughout, with Bell, wideout Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint and tight end Brock Bowers combining for 19 receptions. Rosemy-Jacksaint had career-highs with seven catches and two touchdowns; Bell tied a career-high with five receptions, for a career-best 90 yards and a score; and Bowers caught seven passes for 60 yards and a touchdown.

Tennessee jumped out to a 7-0 lead with a 75-yard touchdown run by Jaylen Wright on the first play of the game. The Bulldogs responded with an 11-play drive that ended in a 42-yard Peyton Woodring field goal, making it 7-3 with 10:01 to play in the first quarter.

After a quick defensive stop, Georgia took the lead on the ensuing drive when Beck pitched right to Bell, who lined up in the backfield, and Bell threw an 18-yard pass to Rosemy-Jacksaint all alone in the end zone. It was Georgia’s first touchdown pass by a non-quarterback since running back Kenny McIntosh threw one in 2021.

Georgia pushed its lead to 17-7 with 8:04 left in the first half on Beck’s nine-yard touchdown pass to Bell on the right side, capping a nine-play, 80-yard drive. The drive began with a 17-yard completion to Bell on the left side. A 21-yard Bowers reception later moved the ball down to the Tennessee 11.

After the defense forced a fourth straight punt, the Georgia offense went back to work late in the half. A 21-yard Bell reception on third-and-12 from the Georgia 27 kept the drive going. Later, Rosemy-Jacksaint had a 34-yard catch down to the UT 4. Two plays later, Beck found Bowers on a the right side for a 3-yard touchdown and a 24-7 lead with 1:31 left in the half.

Tennessee drew a little closer on the final play of the half with Charles Campbell’s 37-yard field goal as time expired, cutting the Bulldog lead to 24-10 at the break. Georgia out-gained the Vols 284-188 in the opening half, with Beck completing 17 of 20 passes for 210 yards and two touchdowns.

On its second drive of the third quarter, Georgia found the end zone for the fourth time in the game. On the first play, wideout Arian Smith took an end-around run 33 yards to the Tennessee 37. Later, Beck hit a crossing Bell for a 24-yard gain to the 10. And two plays after that, Beck connected with Rosemy-Jacksaint for an eight-yard touchdown and a 31-10 lead with 9:24 left in the third.

A 15-yard Kendall Milton touchdown run with 1:03 left in the third pushed the Bulldog lead to 38-10. Milton had 66 yards on 14 carries, and Georgia finished with 156 yards on the ground.

The Bulldogs wrap up their regular season next Saturday night at Georgia Tech. After that, they head back to Atlanta for the SEC Championship Game against No. 8 Alabama on Dec. 2.

Tim Bryant

Tim Bryant

Tim Bryant hosts Classic City Today, 6-10 weekday mornings on 98.7FM & AM 1340 WGAU in Athens.

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