The time is finally upon us. The college football season is here.
No cupcake tune-up this year as the Tigers are jumping into the season head-first with a matchup against the Dawgs. It’s unfortunate that this game doesn’t get played more often, but it is what it is.
Georgia is affectionately known as the de-facto preseason national champions, and rightfully so, but make no mistake, this is one of the most talented teams in the country. The Bulldogs have blue-chip talent at every position on the field.
Most seasons, you know going in that to beat Georgia, you have to slow down that running game. The Bulldogs have featured a run heavy offense forever, but will that still be the case with JT Daniels at quarterback?
Honestly, I think the Bulldogs will be much more dynamic with Daniels as the trigger man, although you still have to very much respect that running game with Zamir White and James Cook, because those two guys can beat you in a hurry.
Despite Georgia being without some of its top pass catchers, receivers Jermaine Burton, Kearis Jackson, Arian Smith, Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint, and freshman Adonai Mitchell still give them legit weapons in the passing game. The Clemson secondary will be tested.
However, this Clemson defense will be up to the challenge. This is a group chomping at the bit to rid themselves of the bad taste that still resides in their mouths due to the Ohio State loss. Tyler Davis, or no Tyler Davis, this defensive front is going to wreak havoc on Saturday night in Charlotte.
This Georgia defense is elite too, though, so for those expecting a high scoring affair, you may be disappointed. D.J. Uiagalelei and the Clemson offense have their work cut out for them. The Dawgs had the best run defense in the country last season, and the Tigers struggled to run the ball at times in 2020.
Clemson doesn’t have to rush for 150-200 yards to win this game, though. They have to do just enough to keep the Georgia defense honest, and between Lyn-J Dixon, Kobe Pace and Will Shipley, I fully expect the Tigers to be able to do that, seeing as this offensive line has something to prove.
In a game in which the two defenses will rule the day, expect Uiagalelei and the Clemson receivers to be the difference. There are some questions surrounding the Georgia secondary, meaning Justyn Ross, Frank Ladson, EJ Williams and the rest of those guys will have opportunities to make plays.
In the end, the Tigers make one or two more plays than Georgia and the Clemson defensive line is just a little to much for immobile Daniels.
Clemson 21 Georgia 16
Freddie Huth: After an off-season full of hearing about how bad the offensive line was, how many points the defense gave up to Ohio State, and how weak the ACC is, you’ve got to think the Tigers want to come out and make a statement in a huge way. Georgia’s running game will keep it close but after Clemson’s pass rush makes them one dimensional and the first game jitters subside the Tigers pull away.
Clemson 34 Georgia 21
Ted Jackson: Georgia’s power run game will be hard to slow, and will keep this game close. JT Daniels will see the fiercest pass rush yet during his tenure as UGA’s starter. The Clemson running game may struggle a bit against a stout defense, but DJ Uiagalelei will pass for over 300 yards for the win.
Clemson 28 Georgia 21
Sam Clemons: I’ve looked at this one from all angles and I see an almost perfectly even match-up. However, I believe the sheer depth and experience of Clemson’s defense (even in light of the rumored absence of a key player) the committee of running backs and the talented stable of receivers should be enough for the Tigers to squeeze out a win, in a nail-biter.
Clemson 31 Georgia 28
Nathan Shipman: The offensive line and the whole defense have been preparing non-stop for the chance to redeem themselves. The quarterbacks want to pick up where Trevor Lawrence left off. The special teams have a potential holder of the year, kicker of the year, and punter of the year in their ranks and will show that is no mistake. The running backs want to prove that Travis Etienne is not the last good back to come out of Clemson. This top-five matchup will be close but with a little wiggle room.
Clemson 27 Georgia 14
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