Ge­or­gia thinks it’s ready for LSU

The Detroit News - - Sports -

Ba­ton Rouge, La. — LSU run­ning back Nick Bros­sette said he’s been look­ing for­ward to play­ing Ge­or­gia “for a long time now,” and would search the in­ter­net for a tele­cast of the last time the Bull­dogs played in Tiger Sta­dium.

The video from 2008 shows a Ge­or­gia squad that fea­tured Matthew Stafford, A.J. Green and Know­shon Moreno — and which hardly looked in­tim­i­dated by the en­vi­ron­ment in Death Val­ley while post­ing 52 points in a twotouch­down vic­tory.

A decade later, the Bull­dogs (6-0, 4-0 SEC) re­turn with a No. 2 rank­ing, an un­blem­ished record and a ros­ter full of pro­duc­tive play­ers who, on one hand, ex­pect their tough­est chal­lenge of the sea­son so far, and on the other, sound very con­fi­dent they’ll han­dle it — even though none of the teams they’ve played so far are cur­rently ranked.

“We’ve been tested,” Ge­or­gia tight end Isaac Nauta said. “We believe that some of the best com­pe­ti­tion we’re go­ing to play is in prac­tice.”

Ge­or­gia quar­ter­back Jake Fromm is threat­en­ing to eclipse for­mer Ken­tucky quar­ter­back Tim Couch’s 1998 SEC sin­gle sea­son com­ple­tion per­cent­age record of 72.3. The Bull­dogs have a host of pro­duc­tive run­ning backs who’ve com­bined to av­er­age 245 yards rush­ing per game. And Ge­or­gia’s de­fense is among the stingi­est in the na­tion, al­low­ing 13 points per game.

“We just have to be Ge­or­gia foot­ball,” re­ceiver Terry Good­win said. “We haven’t played our best yet.”

Maybe not, but the Bull­dogs have bull­dozed their com­pe­ti­tion so far. Their slimmest vic­tory mar­gin has been by two touch­downs at Mis­souri .

Odds mak­ers have listed Ge­or­gia as slightly more than a touch­down fa­vorite at No. 13 LSU (5-1, 2-1), which was ranked fifth be­fore tum­bling down the AP Top 25 af­ter its first loss of the sea­son at Florida last week­end.

“Our team is fired up for an op­por­tu­nity to play in an awe­some place to play,” said Ge­or­gia coach Kirby Smart, who coached the sec­ondary at LSU un­der Nick Sa­ban in 2004.

Buck­eyes hit the ground

Ohio State quar­ter­back Dwayne Hask­ins Jr. has been light­ing up the score­board with touch­down passes. Next up is Min­nesota, and the No. 3 Buck­eyes will try to get their run­ning game back on track.

Star tail­backs J.K. Dob­bins and Mike We­ber com­bined for just 3.2 yards per carry in the last two games.

The fo­cus will in­volve more push from the of­fen­sive line when the Buck­eyes host the Go­phers (3-2, 0-2 Big Ten) to­day.

Short-yardage sit­u­a­tions have trig­gered some stress on the Ohio State side­line.

Hask­ins leads the na­tion with 25 touch­down passes and is on track to break school records this sea­son. He’s also a drop-back guy and less likely to grind it out in short-yardage sit­u­a­tions for the Buck­eyes (6-0, 3-0).

“Third-and-1 is tough right now,” Buck­eyes coach Ur­ban Meyer said.

John Baze­more/Associated Press

Ge­or­gia tight end Isaac Nauta says Ge­or­gia faces some of its tough­est com­pe­ti­tion in prac­tice.

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