MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Georgia didn’t just get beat last Saturday in Auburn, Alabama.
They got destroyed.
They were humbled.
They were embarrassed.
We knew before that game that Georgia could lose to Auburn and still win out and be a national champion. But, that? We didn’t expect that. We didn’t expect 40-17. We didn’t expect that every single thing they did would go wrong.
However, it was just one loss. Head coach Kirby Smart said after the game his team would be judged and defined on how they respond to this loss to Auburn, and he’s right. If they pout and feel sorry for themselves, they’ll lose to Kentucky. We must see how this team will respond to something that had not happened to them before last week. For the first time, Georgia will have to rebound after a loss. They have got to learn from what happened in that game and then forget about it. They have to know you can’t get beat on the line of scrimmage, and that’s what happened Saturday.
Remember when Smart got the job? He said Georgia had to improve the line of scrimmage. We thought he had done that through the first nine games, but Auburn showed us more work is needed. Auburn showed us that Georgia’s lines of scrimmage may be good, but they may not be great – at least not yet. But all season, Georgia has learned from what has not gone right. Even though they’ve won all but one game, things haven’t gone perfect for this team. And now, they have got to realize they will have to play better against a great team or they will be embarrassed again.
Georgia might have to play Auburn again – in the SEC Championship game. If Auburn plays as well as they did last week against Georgia when they play Alabama next week, we will see that rematch. Whether it’s Auburn or Alabama in the SEC Championship game, if Georgia plays the way they did last week, Bulldog fans will be leaving at halftime.
There’s still a ton to play for. Let Georgia get back on track this Saturday against Kentucky and then win in Atlanta against Georgia Tech. Then let’s see if they learned from last week’s game when they play for the SEC Championship. Let’s see if they get better by losing. If this team wins out, they’ll be the national champions. And maybe, just maybe, losing one game will inspire the Bulldogs. The running game can’t be shut out like it was the other day. The defense can’t be neutralized like it was the other day. And the coaches can’t be out-coached, like they were the other day.
Fix these problems – all of them – and this will be a special season. Win out and we might think the best thing that ever happened to Georgia – was losing to Auburn.