The Georgia Bulldogs held off their arch-rivals, the Florida Gators, 17-9 on Saturday in Jacksonville. The win gives the Bulldogs control over their own destiny in the race for the SEC East title, a position that few saw coming after an embarrassing 35-7 loss to South Carolina a few weeks earlier. However, the Bulldogs were able to pull out the win, even though few will point to the game and say it was good football.
SB Nation's SEC blog, Team Speed Kills, has some thoughts on the game:
This game isn't likely to go down in the annals of great football games. There were a total of nine turnovers -- yes, nine. The teams combined for 526 yards. The winning team went 1-for-11 on third down, and its quarterback completed fewer than half his passes while throwing three interceptions against one touchdown.
But the style points don't count in the division standings, and this game was all about the division standings. It turned out that all those concerns about Georgia's offense lining up against the Florida defense didn't matter, because Florida's offense wasn't able to move the ball enough to make the Bulldogs pay. And Florida matched Georgia's three turnovers with a half-dozen of its own.
On Georgia's odd, and unlikely, path back to Atlanta for their second straight SEC title game.
And so begins one of the more unlikely runs to the SEC East title since -- well, since Georgia won the SEC East title last year. Despite a 28-point loss to South Carolina and an uninspiring showing against Kentucky, the Dawgs are firmly entrenched in the division driver's seat. If Georgia simply wins out against a relatively weak schedule, they will get the ticket to take on Alabama or LSU or anyone else who emerges from the SEC West.
The relatively weak schedule referenced in the quote for Georgia is Ole Miss at home, and Auburn on the road. Georgia ends the year with two out of conference games against Georgia Southern and Georgia Tech, so they will know their fate in the conference within the next two weeks.