ATHENS, Ga. -- After back-to-back midseason losses, Georgia is not only looking to stay in the race for the Eastern Division, but is also looking to hand Auburn its second loss and snatch any ideas of BCS contention away from the Tigers.
Georgia will travel to Auburn to meet the Tigers in the 117th version of the “Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry.” Georgia has won five of the last six matchups against the Tigers and similarly to earlier in the season, Georgia will also reacquaint itself with former Bulldogs.
Georgia will return members of its depleted offense this week. The Bulldogs are looking to get back wide receiver Chris Conley this week, who was injured in the last seconds of the Bulldogs loss to Vanderbilt. Senior tight end Arthur Lynch will also come back for Georgia this week after suffering from bruised ribs against Florida.
Auburn is a three-point favorite this weekend down on the Plains. If Georgia wants to remain in talks for the Eastern division title, they must first knock off its oldest rival, the Auburn Tigers.
Quarterbacks: Nick Marshall, who was formerly a defensive end at Georgia, is now putting Auburn’s offense on his back. This season Marshall has 1,301 total yards with more than half of those yards coming on the ground. He has also completed 58.5 percent of his passes and has eight touchdowns. Georgia’s senior quarterback Aaron Murray is one of the nation’s most decorated quarterbacks. Murray has 2,477 yards, 20 touchdowns and has completed 63.3 percent of passes. Murray will have tailback Todd Gurley along with receivers Michael Bennett and Conley to sling the ball to.
Georgia’s defense: Auburn boasts a stout running game, and defensively the Bulldogs have to stop it. The Tigers also have an explosive backfield; every single player back there is capable of making big plays, including Marshall who has tallied 734 yards rushing this season. Junior linebackers Amarlo Herrera and Ramik Wilson will be key in Georgia’s defensive success in limiting Auburn’s run.
Todd Gurley: Sophomore tailback Todd Gurley is known to dominate in big games. Simply put, Gurley has 567 yards just against Clemson, South Carolina, LSU and Florida. Now that he’s healthy, look for him to plow through Auburn’s defense.