Georgia stakes claim to dynasty, beats TCU 65-7 to claim back-to-back championships
INGLEWOOD, Calif. — The Georgia football dynasty is officially underway.
The Bulldogs scored the most dominant championship game victory of the modern era, blowing out TCU by a 65-7 count before the crowd of 72,628 at SoFi Stadium.
Georgia became the first program since the inception of the CFP (2014) era to repeat as national champions, and it is only the fourth team in the modern era to win back-to-back titles following Alabama (2011-2012), USC (2003-2004) and Nebraska (1994-1995).
UGA out-gained TCU 589 yards to 188, pulling out most of the starters in the fourth quarter, and taking a knee to run out the clock.
Smart’s 2022 Bulldogs represent his first perfect, 15-0 team, and this marks the program’s sixth consecutive finish in the top seven.
It only seemed fitting that Georgia Hall of Fame player David Pollack proclaimed the Bulldogs have “taken over college football” with Alabama head coach sitting next to him during a halftime segment on ESPN with UGA up 38-7.
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Bulldogs quarterback Stetson Bennett, nicknamed “The Mailman,” delivered one final time in epic fashion at SoFi Stadium.
Bennett, a 25-year-old former walk-on quarterback, was 18-of-25 passing for 304 yards and 2 touchdowns, and also rushed for 39 yards and 2 touchdowns on 3 carries.
Bennett’s six touchdowns accounted for tied a record set by former LSU quarterback Joe Burrow in the 2019 CFP Championship Game.
Kirby Smart called a timeout with 13:25 left to give Georgia fans an opportunity to give him a standing ovation as he exited the game.
The Bulldogs’ defense, meanwhile, sacked Heisman Trophy runner-up Max Duggan six times and forced three turnovers.
Duggan finished 14-of-22 passing for 152 yards with two interceptions, and he rushed 10 times for -38 yards.
The Bulldogs were in command by the midway point of the game, up 38-7 with the Horned Frogs (13-2) only score coming on the heels of a 60-yard pass that was the result of a rare blown coverage.
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“We were aggressive, but it’s a 60-minute game,” Smart said during his halftime interview. “We have not had our best moments in the third quarter and they have, so we’ve got to challenge our team to come out, play really physical, and play aggressive.”
Georgia did just that, extending their lead to 52-7 with two more touchdowns after a rare three-and-out series to open the third quarter.
The Bulldogs’ demolition sent statisticians racing for the record books, where they found USC’s 55-19 win over Oklahoma following the 2004 season ranked as the most lopsided win of the post-BCS (1998-current) era.
Until Monday night, that is, when Georgia football took over the championship game records books and staked their claim atop college football.