ATHENS – Yes, D’Andre Swift is feeling much better, thank you very much.
For the second straight week, the electric sophomore running back ran nearly the length of the field for a touchdown and went over 150 yards rushing to lead the Georgia Bulldogs to victory. This time it was the Auburn Tigers who felt Swift’s wrath as he broke away for a 77-yard touchdown en route to 186 rushing yards to lead the No. 5 Bulldogs to a 27-10 win over the 24th-ranked Tigers.
Swift had 156 yards and two touchdowns — including an 83-yarder — against Kentucky last week.
The win was the fifth in the last six games against Auburn in the what’s known as the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry. After beating the Tigers in the SEC Championship Game last year, Georgia now leads the 123-game series 59-56-8.
The Bulldogs got a brief taste of playing from behind at home and didn’t like it. So they came roaring back with a second-quarter scoring flurry and then left Auburn gasping for air with a ball-control offense that saw Georgia keep the ball for nearly 40 minutes of the 60-minute game. The Bulldogs rushed for 303 yards on the night and finished with 516 yards of offense.
With the victory, Georgia improves to 9-1 (7-1 SEC) for the second straight season. The Bulldogs will play host to UMass next Saturday at 4 p.m.
Auburn falls to 6-4 overall and 3-4 in SEC play. They play at No. 1 Alabama next week.
Georgia will face the Crimson Tide (10-0) in the SEC Championship Game on Dec. 1 in Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Quarterback Jake Fromm was on target for Georgia, completing 13-of-20 passes for 193 yards and 2 touchdowns. He did throw an interception, however.
The Bulldogs trailed 7-3, 7-6 and 10-6 in the first half before mounting a rally before halftime. Georgia scored two touchdowns in the last 2:47 of the half to forge a 20-10 lead. Fromm led scoring drives of 59 yards and 69 yards and threw touchdown passes to Tyler Simmons and Terry Godwin, respectively.
The Godwin score came after Georgia called timeout with 21 seconds remaining in the half facing fourth-and-three at the Auburn 38. Fromm found Godwin running wide open across the middle of the field ahead of defensive back Jordyn Peters, and the senior wideout took it all the way into the West end zone.
That seemed to bode particularly well for the Bulldogs, who would receive the ball to open the second half. But they were unable to do anything with their first three possessions after halftime, the second ending with an interception by Jamel Deen deep in the Tigers’ territory.
Fortunately for Georgia, its defense came to play. Though the Bulldogs gave up some ground, they came through on the critical drive-killing third downs to keep the game at two scores. Auburn headed into the fourth quarter just 2-of-8 on third down.
Then, finally, Swift rewarded everybody’s patience. The star of last week’s win over Kentucky, Swift took a handoff up the middle on second-and-12 and turned it into a 77-yard touchdown and a 27-10 Bulldogs lead with 13:53 to play.