ORLANDO, Fla. — The 2019 college football season opened with the same question we’ve been trying to answer the last four years: Can anyone stop Alabama or Clemson?
The Tigers and the Tide have owned the No. 1 spot in the AP Top 25 the past 55 game weeks dating back to Nov. 1, 2015, per ESPN’s Brad Edwards.
Further, Clemson and Alabama have met in the College Football Playoffs the past four years.
Georgia football starts this season No. 3, but ESPN GameDay analyst and former Bulldogs legend David Pollack believes UGA can interrupt the Alabama-Clemson show this season.
“It’s Georgia, you’ve got Kirby Smart who has stacked recruiting class on top of recruiting class,” Pollack said on the College GameDay set at Disney World on Saturday.
“I think that their defense is going to be as good as you’ve seen their defense in the last couple of years, because they have a legitimate pass rush.”
The Bulldogs’ confidence and returning talent, Pollack said, is key.
“They’re not scared,” Pollack said . “If you go against Tua (Tagovailoa) and Trevor (Lawrence) you have to have a quarterback, Jake Fromm has been there and done that, you’re going to have to have skills, they have running backs, they’ve got the best offensive line in the country.
“I think Georgia is the next team on the cusp right now.”
Desmond Howard said Texas A&M could also derail Alabama and/or Clemson when they meet during the regular season.
“But,” Howard said, “Georgia, too, because I like Georgia.”
Howard picked the Bulldogs to beat Alabama in the SEC Championship Game and then beat Wisconsin in the College Football Playoffs before losing to Clemson in the CFP title game.
Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso and Michael Irvin all picked Alabama to beat Georgia in the SEC Championship Game.
Pollack, meanwhile, also said he believes D’Andre Swift will be the Bulldogs’ player garnering the most attention this season and be a factor in the Heisman Trophy race.
“I don’t think it’s Jake Fromm, I think it’s Swift,” Pollack said when preseason Heisman Trophy talk came up on the set on Saturday. “He’s got the ability to make those ‘Wow’ plays and he’s got an offensive line that are just a bunch of hulking dudes.”
That said, Pollack picked Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence to win the Heisman Trophy.
Pollack, himself an award winner with the Lombardi, Lott, Bednarik and Ted Hendricks Awards, pointed out the Tigers’ have never had a Heisman winner and will need to score more points this season.
Georgia football fall camp