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Georgia coach Kirby Smart had plenty to smile about on Friday night.

3 things on Georgia football schedule reveal: About time Bulldogs got a break!

ATHENS — All the hand-wringing, worry and conspiracy theories in Georgia went for naught Friday afternoon.

The preseason No. 4-ranked Bulldogs ended up with a fair schedule, adding SEC West bottom feeders Mississippi State and Arkansas.

RELATED: Closer look, SEC football opponents revealed

It was indeed a best-case scenario for Georgia, both in terms of the opponents, and even the storylines.

Kirby Smart gets to play old friend and former line coach Sam Pittman at Arkansas. while the Hogs still are somewhat depleted of talent.

Then celebrated offensive guru Mike Leach gets to come to Sanford Stadium at some point this season and match wits with Young Gun defensive coordinator Dan Lanning and the Bulldogs loaded secondary.

RELATED: Social media reacts to Georgia’s Friday opponent reveal

That’s fun stuff if you are a  Georgia fan.

That game at Alabama? Probably not so much.

And Auburn, the annual West Division opponent? Georgia fans know to never count out the Tigers.

Here are three observations from the SEC schedule release on Friday:

Sooey, Pig Phooey!

Pity Arkansas, and the ridiculously difficult schedule Pittman and his Hogs have been assigned this season.

The Razorbacks added a road game to Florida and the home date with Georgia on Friday on top of the challenges of the West Division.

Arkansas plays all six of the SEC teams ranked in the Top 13 of the Amways Coaches’ preseason Top 25 poll.

But if we’re being honest, other than Vanderbilt is there an SEC East Division team we believe the Razorbacks could beat?

Bully Bully

The last time Mississippi State came to Sanford Stadium things were different, and not just because it was pre-COVID-19 and there were fans.

Those Maroon Bulldogs were ranked No. 17 and folks were buzzing about what a great job Dan Mullen was doing despite not winning the West Division during his tenure in Starkville (Hey, he was close!).

This Mississippi State is in reload mode, and it looks to be a walk for Georgia. Oh, and some folks are still buzzing about Dan Mullen even though he hasn’t won the East Division his first two seasons in Gainesville (Uhh, not close yet).

UGA has won 11 of the last 12 meetings in this series, its last loss to State coming by a 24-12 count in 2010 in Starkville.

About Time?!

UGA athletic director Greg McGarity says SEC athletic directors should neither get the credit or the blame for their respective schools’ schedules.

That said, it’s fair to argue that it’s about time UGA got a fair shake on a league issue. Especially when one considers it was the Bulldogs who bit the bullet and played back-to-back road games with rival Auburn in 2012 and 2013 to help the SEC ease in Missouri and Texas A&M.

Then, last season, when five opponents — FIVE — had open dates before they played Georgia. Remember that South Carolina loss? Yep, the Gamecocks were one of the five.

Georgia’s two open dates last season were Tennessee and Florida — and the Vols and Gators also had open dates.

 

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