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George Pickens caught 12 passes in Georgia's Sugar Bowl win over Baylor.

ESPN names 2 Georgia football standouts to All-Bowl Team

Georgia’s bowl game against Baylor was a success, as the Bulldogs came away with a 26-14 win to end the 2019 season. The win pushed Georgia’s record to 12-2 and ended up putting the Bulldogs at the No. 4 spot in the final AP Poll. 

And ESPN took time to recognize the efforts of two Bulldogs for their bowl game performance, as George Pickens and Richard LeCounte were named to ESPN’s All-Bowl Team. 

Pickens had the best game of his career against Baylor, as he hauled in 12 passes for 175 yards and a touchdown. He showed why he came to Georgia with such hype and why there might be better days ahead for the Georgia passing attack, given he will be just a sophomore in 2020.

Pickens was named the MVP for the game, capping his freshman season that also saw him named to the Freshmen All-SEC team. He led Georgia in receiving yards, catches and receiving touchdowns.

But it wasn’t all rosy for Pickens in 2019. He was suspended for the first half of the Georgia Tech game, then got ejected in the second half of that game for fighting. Pickens had to miss the first half of the SEC championship game due to the ejection. Georgia missed him badly, as the Bulldogs scored just three points in the opening 30 minutes against LSU. Pickens had Georgia’s only touchdown of the game in the 37-10 loss to the eventual national champion LSU Tigers.

“I’ve still got growing to do,” Pickens said. “But I can kind of tell myself that I’m improving every day.”

Related: Georgia Sugar Bowl star George Pickens: ‘Improving every day’

Pickens should be a huge target for new quarterback Jamie Newman, who transferred from Wake Forest after Jake Fromm announced he would be heading to the NFL.

“George is a great teammate, a great football player,” Fromm said after the Sugar Bowl. “What I love about George is he loves football. He loves going out, competing. I can say for him showing up at practice, he’s the same guy, same competitor every single day. And I know I love it.

As for LeCounte, his two interceptions were huge for Georgia in the win over Baylor. The defensive effort, without the likes of J.R. Reed and Tyler Clark, helped Georgia end the season with the nation’s No. 1 scoring defense in the country. Georgia also went the entire season without giving up a rushing touchdown to an opposing running back.

LeCounte gave Georgia fans some great news shortly after the New Year’s Day victory, as he announced he would be returning for his senior season. LeCounte will be the unquestioned leader of the 2020 Georgia defense, which should once again be one of the nation’s best.

Related: Richard LeCounte is the face of the Georgia football program for the 2020 season

Georgia will likely begin the 2020 season ranked in the top-10, given it has talents like Pickens and LeCounte returning while also bringing in another elite recruiting class. The Bulldogs open the season on Sept. 7, when they take on the Virginia Cavilers in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

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