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Georgia Football

CBS’s Gary Danielson: Georgia Bulldogs and Michigan Wolverines Are "About Even"

December 1, 2022

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ATHENS - The No. 1 Georgia Bulldogs and coach Kirby Smart are getting ready for the 2022 SEC Championship Game in Atlanta against the LSU Tigers. CBS’s Gary Danielson will be on the call, and he broke down that game, and more in a release sent out by the network. 

On the gameplans for LSU and Georgia:

I really believe that LSU has nothing to lose and they will try to open it up and go over the top of Georgia’s front seven because they’ll be really difficult to run against. Jayden Daniels took a beating last week and for their run offense to really go, he really has to be the center of it. I think we’re going to see more of the boot game, the quick passing game, the screen game, a few long shots – and that’s dangerous because they’re not used to playing that way – but they’re not going to be able to grind it out against Georgia.
On the other side of the field, I think Georgia is going to say, “let’s not do something where we have a chance to lose this game.” That doesn’t mean that they’re not going to throw the ball deep, because it’s not the end of the world to throw a 40-yard interception. But I don’t think they’ll take chances with Stetson throwing the ball over the middle of the field early in this game and risk a turnover. Georgia believes they’re the better team and if they play it conservatively, they will win and move on with the first seed and be able to play their next game. The motivation for Georgia in this thing is they really want to keep that number one seed and play another game in Atlanta and not have Michigan jump into that Atlanta spot. 

On whom will be the game’s difference maker:

If you’re LSU, it better be their quarterback. If it’s not, I don’t know what they turn to. For Georgia, the difference maker that they want it to be is their offensive line. They’re playing an incredible brand of football right now. They’re line believes nobody can stop them. They are gashing people with their tight ends in combination with their line. And their running backs are physical competent football players right now. If you look at it, Michigan and Georgia are mirror images of each other.

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On the keys for LSU to pressure Stetson Bennett:

It’s going to be a challenge, because the way that Georgia right now is dealing their offense, it’s like watching the old Joe Gibbs offense in Washington where they come at you six different ways to run their counter. Todd Monken has done a great job with this offense, but they have not played from behind a lot, which means it’s hard to pressure Stetson. Now Stetson has gotten a lot of credit this year, and deservedly so. This has been a Georgia offense built more around them controlling the ball and big plays from their tight ends, but they’ve never really had to play from behind 13 points and had to drop back a lot. That would be the gameplan for LSU to try and get ahead and force Georgia into a game where they have to drop back to pass and not use all of those play action passes. And that’s when Harold Perkins would really be tough for this Georgia team to handle. He’s tough for any team to handle and is one of the elite players we have in this conference.

On the CFP Rankings:

I don’t think there was a surprise from what I predicted the committee would do. If I was on the committee, I would be in that room talking about how close USC is to TCU and how close Alabama is to Ohio State. For example, if USC beats Utah could you make the argument that they deserve the third spot? Even if TCU goes undefeated, how do you measure the strength of what USC has done these last three games and winning the way they had played in that conference where they play everybody in the Pac 12 versus TCU and who actually deserves what spot is interesting. The next one is just how did they decide whether Ohio State or Alabama deserves the 5th spot. Obviously, it’s an important choice. I have to admit that if I had been in the room, I would’ve called it a tie. One team lost one game by a lot, at home, with everything riding on it including revenge. The other team lost two games on the road in close ones. I think it’s almost an eyeball test and those two teams to me are almost in a dead heat. And with two upsets, I very much think that Alabama is alive. I think that they could bypass a one-loss TCU team.

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Danielson’s favorite to win it all:

I think that Georgia and Michigan are about even in this thing right now. It’d be tough to split them up. That performance that Michigan had against Ohio State was something. If we just take a little bit of a step back to one week earlier, they could have very easily lost that game against Illinois. Everybody always takes the last look at a team and that’s the way they think they’re going to play every game going forward. Michigan got hot and I think that Ohio State’s gameplan against them was not very sound on defense.

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