Even after taking care of business against Tennessee, the Georgia team still wasn’t looking ahead to the even bigger contest against Alabama
“Enjoy the win tonight. Tomorrow, we start worrying about Alabama,” wide receiver Kearis Jackson said.
Quarterback Stetson Bennett didn’t offer much more following the win over Tennessee.
“It’s exciting any time you get to play somebody you don’t usually play,” Bennett said. “I guess we usually have played them in Atlanta in the past few years but it’s still exciting.”
To Bennett’s point, this will be the first time since the 2015 season that Georgia and Alabama play each other in the regular season. The previous two times the teams have met, they’ve both been in Atlanta, with one game serving as a national championship and the other as an SEC championship game.
This will be the first time since 2007 that the Bulldogs and Crimson Tide will meet in Tuscaloosa, Ala. Coincidently, that was also the last time Georgia beat Alabama, as Nick Saban has won the last five games he’s coached against Georgia.
Since Smart took over in 2016, he’s been responsible for the last two losses. Georgia led in the fourth quarter of both of those games but couldn’t finish off the Crimson Tide.
Following the 44-21 win over Tennessee on Saturday, Smart was slightly more elaborate in how he was going to start prepping for the game against Alabama.
“I’ll be up first thing in the morning, watch this tape, figure out how we can get better,” Smart said. “You know, a lot of people will brush this game off and try to go to the next one. You can’t do that because what are they going to do all week? They’re going to watch our tape deeper than we’re going to watch our tape.”
Some of those areas include offensive execution, as the Bulldogs struggled on short-yardage situations. The Bulldogs were stuffed twice on fourth and short, with one of those coming on the goal line.
The Bulldogs were also gifted great field position at the start of the second half against Tennessee. But the Bulldogs couldn’t produce touchdowns on those drives, as they had to kick two field goals.
Fortunately for Georgia, Alabama has some major defensive issues to work on as the Crimson Tide gave up 48 points and over 600 yards of offense against Ole Miss.
Smart is expecting Alabama to heavily review what the Bulldogs did and didn’t do against the Volunteers ahead of Saturday’s game between the No. 2 and No. 3 teams in the country.
“When you go in and watch the tape and move on, they’re watching your tape from Sunday to Friday,” Smart said. “So you better watch it and try to anticipate what they’re going to see.”