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ATHENS – Kirby Smart and the Georgia Bulldogs finished first in the College Football Playoff Committee rankings again this week.
The ranking came as no surprise after the No. 1 Dawgs on the road and Kentucky went 16-6. Georgia sacked former No. 1 Tennessee 27-13 in a one-sided affair at Sanford Stadium three Saturdays ago. This game is the most watched college football game of the year. Ohio State fought but won in Maryland. Michigan and TCU went undefeated with late FGs to win the game.
Georgia Back at #1 in CFP Rankings
The no. 1 Dawgs take on Georgia Tech Between the Hedges on Saturday. The game begins at 12 p.m. on ESPN. Georgia is a 35.5-point favorite to beat the Jackets, UGA’s win over State closed the SEC East for the fifth time in six years. The win over Kentucky marked the second straight season the SEC No. 1 Dawgs went undefeated. No. 2 Ohio State hosts No. 3 Michigan this Saturday at 12 p.m. on FOX. No. 4 TCU houses the State of Iowa. This game starts at 4:00 p.m. on FOX.
“They know Georgia is in it,” ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit said of the Bulldogs last Tuesday night.
Much of the top of the College Football Playoffs remained flat this week after a rocky week from the first rankings.
4th week of the 2022 College Football Playoffs
2. State of Ohio
11. Penn State
12. State of Kansas
15. Notre Dame
16. State of Florida
17. North Carolina
20. Ole Fraulein
21. State of Oregon
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Evaluation of the ranking
*In 2022, at No. 3 on the CFP ladder, the Bulldogs checked in last in the first ranking that season. Last year, Georgia was No. 1 in all five CFP regular-season rankings and No. 3 on pick day.
*Georgia rose from #3 in the preseason poll to #2 after the first week and then to #1 in the Associated Press (AP) poll ahead of the South Carolina game in mid-September.
*After defeating the Gamecocks 48-7, the Bulldogs also took first place in the Coaches poll. The Bulldogs were a consensus No. 1 for the next two weeks. Then Georgia fell back to No. 2 in both AP/Coaches polls after their 26-22 away win in Missouri on Oct. 1. The Bulldogs reclaimed first place in the AP Poll after a 42–10 win over Auburn in week six.
*Georgia has been ranked #1 or #2 in 26 of the last 28 AP polls, with #3 the other two weeks.
SENIORS SHOULD LEAVE A TRACK
Top-ranked Georgia (11-0) enters Tech competition for a second straight perfect regular season. The Yellow Jackets (5-6) are high after a 21-17 win over No. 13 North Carolina (9-2) in Chapel Hill. Georgia became only the third SEC team since 1992 to have back-to-back 8-0 seasons in conference play after beating Kentucky 16-6 away. Tech overcame a 17-0 deficit in the second quarter to end UNC’s hopes of making the college football playoffs.
Behind frontrunner Kenny McIntosh, who had career-high 143 yards (including a touchdown), three field goals from Jack Podlesny and a strong defense, the Bulldogs went straight to the SEC Eastern Division title in Lexington. With the top two quarterbacks out, Georgia Tech relied on the duo of Zach Gibson and Taisunh Phommachanh as they shared game time in the win against UNC. Meanwhile, tech defense pressured Heisman Trophy nominee Drake Mayo all day, and the Tar Heels put on their worst offensive performance of the year. They were in the top 10 nationally in score (40.1 ppg) and total attack (505.5 ypg). UNC finished with 17 points and 365 yards.
The Bulldog seniors are recognized before the tech game. This Bulldog class has the opportunity to set the school record for most career wins. They reached the mark of the 2021 national champions last Saturday with their 45th place finish. The 2021 class finished 45-8 while the 2022 seniors are 45-5.
Georgia coach Kirby Smart is now in his seventh season leading the Bulldogs at 77-15. Tech interim coach Brent Key has now had two away wins against ranked sides in his first seven games. The first away win back then came over No. 24 Pittsburgh, a 26-21 decision, in his first game at the top.
The Bulldogs lead the Tech Series 69-39-5 including 31-14-1 at Dooley Field at Sanford Stadium. Georgia has won their last four encounters with Tech and upset the Bulldogs 28-27 in Athens in 2016. The teams did not play in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which saw only conference competitions. Last year in Atlanta Georgia finished a regular season 12-0 with a 45-0 shutout by Tech. The 45-point margin of victory was the widest in series history, matching the 2019 result in Athens when the Bulldogs drove to a 52-7 win.
REVIEW: BEST DOGS BLANK GEORGIA TECH 45-0
Georgia scored at least a touchdown in all four quarters to beat Georgia Tech for a fourth straight season. While Jack Podlesny started the goal with a 38-yard field goal in the first quarter and Daijun Edwards ended the loss with a 3-yard scoring run in the last quarter, the Bulldogs scored a total of six as UGA held a final 12-0 score scored season. Stetson Bennett finished the game 14-20 for 255 yards and four touchdowns, and Brock Bowers had 100 receiving yards on three catches and two touchdowns. Georgia beat the Yellow Jackets 463-166 and Georgia Tech never made it past the Bulldog’s 27-yard line. Former Bulldog and current Philadelphia Eagle Nakobe Dean was the team leader on defense with six stops.
*Georgia is aiming to complete its sixth undefeated regular season in school history and second straight under Kirby Smart. These special seasons took place in 1896 (4-0), 1946 (10-0), 1980 (11-0), 1982 (11-0) and 2021 (12-0).
*The Bulldogs are looking to go unbeaten at home for a fifth straight season under Smart.