ATHENS — Georgia exploded for five touchdowns in the second quarter to pull away for the victory after a shaky start in its home-opening game against Murray State on Saturday.
The No. 3-ranked Bulldogs (2-0) scored the 63-17 win over the FCS Racers (1-1) before a capacity crowd of 92,746 at Sanford Stadium.
Quarterback Jake Fromm was 10-of-11 passing for 166 yards and a TD before coming out of the game in the second quarter. Fromm played seven series before being relieved by Stetson Bennett.
Bennett finished 9-of-13 passing for 124 yards with two touchdowns and an interception that was returned by Murray State for a touchdown.
Redshirt freshman Zamir White led UGA in rushing with 72 yards on eight carries, and he scored a touchdown. Freshman receiver George Pickens had his breakout game, four catches for 78 yards and a TD.
Legendary UGA coach Vince Dooley and College Football Hall of Fame back Herschel Walker, who led the Bulldogs to the 1980 national championship were both on hand. The field was officially named in Dooley’s honor before kickoff.
Here’s how the game broke down:
Georgia 63, Murray State 17, (7:42): Stetson Bennett 1-yard rush (Rodrigo Blankenship kick). Drive: 3 plays, 30 yards, 1:27.
Georgia 56, Murray State 17, (10:49): Dominick Blaylock 25-yard pass from Stetson Bennett (Rodrigo Blankenship kick). Drive: 12 plays, 75 yards, 5:29. Key play: Kenny McIntosh 6-yard run on third-and-1 to UGA 40.
Georgia 49, Murray State 17, (1:18): Gabriel Vicente 26-yard field goal. Drive: 1o plays, 66 yards, 4:04. Key play: Jacob Bell 50-yard pass from Preston Rice to Georgia 14.
Georgia 49, Murray State 14, (5:22): Demetris Robertson 15-yard catch from Stetson Bennett (Rodrigo Blankenship kick). Drive: 8 plays, 75 yards, 4:11. Key play: Matt Landers 12-yard catch on third-and-3 from the Murray State 31.
Georgia 42, Murray State 14, (9:33): Nigel Walton 35-yard interception return (Stetson Bennett).
Jake Fromm 10-11, 166 yards, 1 TD
D’Andre Swift 6 carries, 67 yards, 2 TD
Eli Wolf 4 catches, 73 yards
Mark Webb 5 tackles
Nolan Smith 1.5 sacks
Georgia 42, Murray State 7, (2:11 ): Zamir White 5-yard run (Rodrigo Blankenship kick). Drive: 4 plays, 36 yards, 1:34. Key play: Tyler Simmons 42-yard punt return to Murray State 34.
• Stetson Bennett takes over at quarterback 3:45 mark of second quarter.
Georgia 35, Murray State 7, (6:11): George Pickens 15-yard catch from Jake Fromm (Rodrigo Blankenship kick). Drive: 3 plays, 80 yards, 46 seconds. Key play: George Pickens 43-yard catch to Murray State 36.
Georgia 28, Murray State 7, (9:07): D’Andre Swift 10-yard run. (Rodrigo Blankenship kick). Drive: 4 plays, 41 yards, 2:18. Key play: Eli Wolf 24-yard catch on third-and-4 at Murray State 35.
Georgia 21, Murray State 7, (13:51): J.R. Reed 14-yard fumble return for TD. Key play: Mark Webb fumble-inducing hit on TD play.
Georgia 14, Murray State 7, (14:24): Brian Herrien 2-yard run (Rodrigo Blankenship kick), Drive: 7 plays, 78 yards, 2:38. Key play: D’Andre Swift 40-yard run to the Murray State 38.
• Ben Cleveland in a right guard, Cade Mays replaces Jamaree Salyer a right tackle.
Murray State 7, Georgia 7, (6:36): DaQuon Green 60-yard catch from Preston Rice (Gabriel Vicente kick). Drive: 3 plays, 72 yards, 1:26.
• Jake Fromm suffers his first sack of the season on UGA’s second possession. A Murray State twisting linebacker gets him.
Georgia 7, Murray State 0 (13:37): D’Andre Swift 3-yard rush (Rodrigo Blankenship kick). Drive: 4 plays, 56 yards, 1:23. Key play: James Cook 19-yard pass from Jake Fromm to start drive, first offensive play of game.
• Jamaree Salyer gets the start at right tackle in place of injured Isaiah Wilson (ankle). Cade Mays is at right guard, Trey Hill at center, Solomon Kindley a left guard and Andrew Thomas at left tackle. Charlie Woerner started at tight end and the starting receivers were Tyler Simmons and Matt Landers. James Cook got the start at tailback.
ATHENS — Plenty of Georgia football players will be shuffling on and off the field amid temperatures expected to be over 100 degrees on newly-name Vince Dooley Field.
The No. 3-ranked Bulldogs’ depth is one more reason why their 4 p.m. game on Saturday against Murray State figures to become lopsided quickly.
Georgia doesn’t figure to let up. Backups and reserves will look to make the most of their opportunities and fuel competition for playing time in future games.
Bulldogs tight end John FitzPatrick explained just how healthy that competition is for the Bulldogs, with teammates genuinely rooting for one another instead of tuning out when not in the game.
“There’s no individual aspect of it, it’s just all for the team, and that’s what I like about this place,” said FitzPatrick, who rooms with Tennessee transfer Eli Wolf and also competes with senior starter Charlie Woerner.
“You go to any position group, you’re going to see that. No one is against each other. (Eli) is pushing me, telling me what to do on a certain play, and I can help him on a certain play.”
LAS WEEK’S RECAP