Georgia football: What Auburn and Gus Malzahn had to say after that 27-6 loss
The Georgia football team posted one of its most impressive victories of the Kirby Smart era Saturday night at home against No. 7 Auburn.
It was a top 10 matchup that answered a lot of looming questions that had been looming for the Bulldogs.
DawgNation pulled a few of the most interesting things the other half of Deep South’s oldest rivalry had to say regarding that 27-6 win. Georgia scored the first 24 points of the game and has now bludgeoned a pair of SEC opponents by a 59-6 margin over its last six quarters of play.
Gus Malzhan didn’t dawdle around the key points of the game when he met the media after afterward. He used a phrase that gave Georgia “credit” for the win a total of six times during his approximate nine-minute post-game press conference with this media.
Auburn coach Gus Malzahn
His opening comments on the game: “First of all give Georgia credit. Very good football team. They won the line of scrimmage. We really got whipped on all three phrases. We got outcoached. You look at first downs they averaged seven yards. I think we had two.“
“Third downs once again we had trouble getting off the field. The big stat to me is rushing yards. We only rushed for 39 yards. Then we got into a situation we got behind we had to throw it a lot. Had trouble protecting. Give them credit. Our guys competed in the second half but we didn’t get it done. This will be a learning experience for our team. I will say this. We will continue to get better. We will learn from this. We’ve got eight SEC games left. I think we have the potential to have a lot of improvement. We will improve. But I just told our team it is what it is. Give them credit. They got after us. We didn’t play well. They played well. We’ve got to learn from it and we got to do a better job next week. That’s what we will do.”
On the line of scrimmage: “You got to give them credit. They got after us upfront. They averaged seven yards on first down. We averaged two. Like I said, the rushing yards. We’ve got to do a better job in that area, too. That was part of the reason.”
On how Stetson Bennett IV was able to settle in: “Yeah, I thought he played well. They had the running game going anytime you get the running game going [you have] the play-action. We had trouble getting pressure on him. He did a good job directing his offense and throwing the ball down the field.”
On how the Bulldogs stopped the Auburn run game: “They are stout upfront. I have to look at the film to see exactly but they were stout up front. Early on we weren’t getting push you know but we’ll need to look at that. We’ll do better but you’ve got to give them credit.”
“They are a really good defense. They have got a lot of veteran guys. We had trouble moving them at times.”
On how his team moved the ball better with tempo and getting into a two-minute offense in the second half: “I think so. I mean obviously, we’d like to punch it in. We did get some rhythm going at times and it was better. But still, I think we’ve got to run the football better than we did. You play a good team and they make you one-dimensional – that’s kind of what I talked about before the game – we’re going to have to be good running the football and passing the football against a defense like that.”
“They made us one dimensional. Our guys competed in the second half. They fought. I’m proud of that, but we got to do better and we will.”
On whether Georgia opened his eyes more with their movement up front running the ball on offense or how they harassed Bo Nix and his offense: “They are a veteran group and we’re not very veteran. We learned a lot. Like I told our guys, we are going to learn a lot from this game and we’ll use that moving forward.”
“We had mostly new starters on the offensive line and they got tested tonight. We’ve got a lot of new starters on the defensive line. They got tested tonight. But we’ll grow from it. But when that happens you have to got to give the other opponent credit. That’s what they did.”
On the recent history of not being able to beat Georgia on the road in the last 15 years: “Yeah, of course, I was just thinking about this year. Just feeling disappointed that we didn’t do a better job. But like I said, they are a good team and we’ll learn from it.”
On his message to his Auburn team after the game: “Well, I think sometimes you have just got to man up and you got to see it like it was. Like I said in my opening statement, they got after us. They got after us in all three phases. They out-coached us. Its a team loss but also we’ve got a young inexperienced team that can grow and we will grow. They competed. I just said this is adversity. We’ve got eight more SEC games. It is going to be a grind. Our team has the potential to improve greatly and we will. Just keep your head up and take it like it is. They got the best of us but we’re still capable of being a good team and I really believe we will be moving forward.”
On how his quarterback Bo Nix handled the Georgia pressure: “Well, like I said, especially in the second half when we had to throw the football and we were behind they’ve got good pass rushers and even if you’ve got veteran guys upfront it is tough.”
“But he competed. He fought. You saw him making plays and moving around. The thing about our offensive line is they’ll learn from this experience. They’ll improve. They are some competitors and they will bounce back.”
On what has made it so tough to beat Georgia in Athens of late: “Well you know as a coach, I’m just thinking about what happened recently. We just, like I said, they got after us. They were the better team. They got out early on us and we had some bad field position and they scored. We got behind and its tough to get behind a team like this defensively. That’s what they did and they made us one-dimensional.”
Auburn QB Bo Nix
On the pressure from the Georgia defense: “Overall the game was very fast. I thought they did a really good job of having a great plan for us. They are a really good defense. We knew they were going to bring some pressure. Part of that is on me. I didn’t slide the right way. I didn’t get it protected and then I just got to get the ball out when the guys are running open.”
On how the early deficit made his offense one-dimensional: “Anytime you find yourself down 21 points really that quickly in a game it is not a good way to start. We just tried to come out in the second half and throw all our bullets at them. Throw the ball around a little bit. We had some successful drives and then we just stalled.”
On how Georgia won the line of scrimmage: “It is tough. Georgia was a really good team. We knew they were going to be a really good team coming in. We knew we were going to have to play really well. They played just about as good as they could play and we played about the worst as we could play and it showed on the field.”
“We just got beat. That’s really all you can say about it.”
On how this Georgia defense is better than the one he saw last season: “I just think that’ss what it is. They had a bunch of returners and they all had a year under their belt so if you give a good team [with] good players a year to continue to develop, it is going to be better than what they were last year.”
“I thought they had a really good plan for us. They came and played hard and that was really the difference in the game. They just played harder than we did and it showed.”
Senior ILB K.J Britt
On how big of an impact was the disqualification of junior safety “Smoke” Monday: “A big deal. You hate to see it. I just hate to see it. I wish we could have played with him. The energy and the confidence that he brings to the defense is really something we feed off of. Just not having him out there tonight just showed us what we really were missing. But it is just the next man up. Got to keep playing. But we hated to lose him. It was unfortunate.”
His thoughts on the Georgia offense: “They did a good job.”
On how frustrating it was to watch Georgia repeatedly dent his defense all night: “Real frustrating. We feel how it looked.”
Junior safety Jamien Sherwood
On the halftime adjustments put in place to slow down Georgia: “They hit us with some pass concepts in the first half so our halftime adjustment was just working on those pass concepts. I would say we played the pass pretty well when they threw the ball. There were a couple they hit. Like a few of them. That’s just what they are going to do. I will just say they just did a good job running the ball. They just played a great game at that point.”
On what he learned about Georgia starting QB Stetson Bennett IV: “Before coming into the game we didn’t know too much about him. He played a good game first against Arkansas. He had some good plays so we really didn’t know too much. We were just going to respect him. We were just going to have to play football against him.”
“But you know after I heard he was a former walk-on at some point. To be a walk-on and to play in the SEC and make plays like that, I will congratulate him. He played a great game tonight. Good luck to him for the rest of the season.”
The stories so far on DawgNation.com
- Stetson Bennett and the “Jumbo” package impress against Auburn
- Why third downs demonstrated why Stetson Bennett outplayed Bo Nix
- WATCH: Kirby Smart makes light of wizardly improvement of offense in 27-6 win
- Georgia football SEC Week 2 roundup: What DawgNation needs to know
- Injury report: How’s James Cook coming out of the Auburn game?
- Fan feedback: DawgNation praises Stetson Bennett IV
- RECAP: Georgia dominates No. 7 Auburn in a statement win
- Instant observations: Georgia 27, Auburn 6
- Game ball: Kearis Jackson’s career night ignites offense
- Social media gushes of Stetson Bennett and the Georgia offense in the first half
- What was the recruiting tale of the tape between Georgia and Auburn?