The Hangover Part III: Georgia’s Slow First Half and Explosive Close against Ole Miss
Georgia followed up the season-defining win against Florida with a matchup at home against the much improved Ole Miss Rebels. The Rebels entered the game with a 5-3 record, fresh off a pair of decisive wins over Arkansas and Auburn and a close loss to Texas A&M (30-27) three games earlier.
What We Saw:
- Georgia opened the game with some sort of hangover from the World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party.
- The Dawgs trailed 3-0 at the end of one and were clinging to a 14-10 lead at the half thanks to a 40 yard TD pass from Aaron Murray to Tavarres King with three seconds remaining in the second quarter.
- The second half was all Bulldogs as Bobo’s offense scored 23 unanswered points.
What We Learned:
Georgia’s offense was prolific enough to overcome a slow start even against a respectable team. The first half was ugly and frustrating to watch, but the second half showed the same tenacious defense fans had clamored for and the offensive power that was becoming more and more expected.
What We Should Have Learned:
Aaron Murray can “ball” as they say. The fourth quarter of the Florida game carried into his performance against Ole Miss (21 of 28 for 384 yards, 4 TDs and 0 INTs) and he just kept rolling. Murray’s combined stat line against Ole Miss, Auburn, Georgia Southern and Georgia Tech was: 71 of 97 (73.2%) for 1137 yards, 13 TDs and 0 Ints. That’s a QB Rating of 215.88 – 40.58 points ahead of A.J. McCarron who lead the nation in passer rating for the season (Murray’s season total trailed A.J. by .5)
Marlon Brown went down with an injury. Although heartbreaking to see a senior who was just coming into his own lost, it proved to be a non-factor over the course of the season.
Long Term Impact:
Georgia’s second half against Ole Miss in many ways revitalized a team that was emotionally drained following an embarrassing loss to South Carolina, a tense bye week, a poor performance against Kentucky and a victorious weekend in Jacksonville. The Dawgs went on to comfortably handle Auburn, Georgia Southern and Georgia Tech to close out the year.
That’s all I got/