Who’s going to win this week? UGA or Alabama? Let’s tweak that a smidgen and apply a simple filter to the roll call of predictions. We’ll list them in three categories: 1) UGA commits; 2) Alabama commits and 3) uncommitted recruits.
Yes, it is a Southern thing. When folks talk about SEC football, the parameters of which school they root are quickly addressed. That’s akin to politics and party affiliation.
Present all sides. It seems so simple it almost feels revolutionary. It would be a shock if a UGA or a Bama commit picked his team to lose this week. The most interesting parts of their answers are the reasons why. These young guys already know football.
That said, the thoughts of 4-star prospect Demetris Robertson frame the thinking about Saturday’s game. Robertson was committed to Alabama for almost a year. He also loves UGA. That’s his home-state school. He is the guy to ask about this week’s game.
“I’ve never picked against Bama so it is hard,’ Robertson said. “If UGA can get a push up front on the Bama front four consistently, then they will take it. If not, its Bama’s game for the taking. It is going to come down to UGA’s offensive line versus Bama’s defensive line.”
That’s as good a take as anyone on ESPN’s Gameday will offer up on Saturday morning, but he couldn’t give a final score.
“I wouldn’t bet on either of the two losing or winning that game,” Robertson said. “They are both good teams.”
That is an intelligent and a measured response. No wonder the guy currently has Stanford as his leader.
Who wins? UGA or Alabama?
2016 DB Chad Clay, Peachtree Ridge (Suwanee, Ga.): “21-17 UGA. UGA’s defense is going to play well and I think the momentum they have coming in (will be big) and they are playing at home.”
2016 WR Davion Curtis, Temple (Temple, Tex.): “We are going to win because there are some good things going on in Athens and (with) the football program. The score will be 34-27.”
2016 WR Randercous Davis, Mays (Atlanta, Ga.): “”34-28. It will be a close game, but both offenses are high-powered so they will score. But if UGA limits turnovers and mistakes it will come out on top.”
2017 ATH Deejay Dallas, Glynn Academy (Brunswick, Ga.): “I don’t know how this game is going to turn out honestly.”
2016 OL Aaron Dowdell, Creekside (Fairburn, Ga.): “35-28 UGA because they won’t be able to stop our run game.”
2016 RB Elijah Holyfield, Woodward Academy (Atlanta, Ga.): “UGA all day 30-27. Nick and Sony.”
2016 DB Tyrique McGhee, Peach County (Fort Valley, Ga.): “I got my boys. They are going to get the ‘W’, but it is going to be a good one, though. I give the score at 27-14.”
2016 DB Chauncey Manac, Clinch County (Homerville, Ga.): “Georgia 28-21. Alabama’s defense is going to get tired of trying to tackle Sony and Chubbs when it gets to the fourth quarter.”
2017 WR Devonta Smith, Amite HS (Amite, La.): “I have Georgia by three.”
2016 WR Charlie Woerner, Rabun County (Tiger, Ga.): “UGA 24, Alabama 20. Not going to even try to say what’s going to happen. It is just going to be a good game.”
2016 DB Malek Young, Coconut Creek (Fla.): “UGA wins 20-17.”
2016 RB B.J. Emmons, Freedom (Morganton, NC): “No prediction.”
2016 TE Miller Forristall, Cartersville (Cartersville, Ga.): “I’m taking Bama 24-17 because Bama’s front seven will win the battle of two extremely talented lines.”
2016 ATH Shawn Jennings, Dadeville HS (Dadeville, Ala.): “21-17 Bama. I feel like Bama plays better as an underdog and they have something to prove this week.”
2016 DL Quinnen Williams, Wenonah HS (Birmingham, Ala.): “I’m picking Alabama over UGA 21-17. I think it will be a close low-scoring game. Alabama run game and defense will be the difference.”
2017 CB Malcolm Askew, McAdory HS (McCalla, AL): “28-17 Georgia. Georgia will be in sync. I don’t think Alabama will be. It will be ALL GEORGIA ALL GAME LONG!”
2016 OL Landon Dickerson, Hickory HS (Hickory, NC): “42-35 Georgia. Georgia has showed me their offense has really developed and I believe after watching them they are in the running for a national championship.”
2017 DB DeAngelo Gibbs, Peachtree Ridge (Suwanee, Ga.): “24-21 UGA. Bama needs a quarterback.”
2016 ATH Mecole Hardman, Jr., Elbert County (Elberton, Ga.): “I’m neutral. LOL.”
2018 QB Trevor Lawrence, Cartersville (Cartersville, Ga.): “38-21 UGA. Georgia has a better offense.”
2017 ILB Nate McBride, Vidalia (Vidalia, Ga.): “34-28 UGA. I think Georgia has a better and faster team this year.”
2016 TE Isaac Nauta, IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.): “Georgia by a touchdown. I think they are going to do just enough in every aspect of the game to pull it off.”
2016 WR Tre Nixon, Viera (Viera, Fla.): “I have Georgia winning by 10. I don’t know what the final score will actually be, but I have Georgia winning by 10 because of the three-headed monster in the backfield. Just being able to consistently being able to pound the ball at Alabama and run the ball consistently.”
2017 DB William Poole II, Hapeville Charter (Atlanta, Ga.): “38-35 UGA.”
2016 ATH Demetris Robertson, Savannah Christian (Savannah, Ga.): “I wouldn’t bet on either of the two losing or winning that game. They are both good teams.”
Jeff Sentell covers UGA recruiting for AJC.com and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Follow him on Twitter for the latest on who’s on their way to play Between the Hedges.