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Georgia Football

BREAKING: Kirby Smart, Georgia Bulldogs to Face Ryan Day's Ohio State Buckeyes in Peach

December 4, 2022

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ATHENS - The No. 1 Georgia Bulldogs and coach Kirby Smart will face Ryan Day and the No. 4 Ohio State in the 2022 Peach Bowl.

ESPN made the announcement during its College Football Playoff rankings show Sunday. The matchup was anticipated as early as Friday night when the USC Trojans were soundly defeated by Utah. TCU lost Saturday in the Big 12 Championship Game, but will face No. 2 overall see Michigan in the Fiesta Bowl. 

The Bulldogs are coming off a 50-30 win over LSU in the 2022 SEC Championship Game. The last time Ohio State played there were thumped 45-23 at home against Michigan. The Wolverines outlasted Purdue to win the Big Ten Saturday night. 

This is Georgia's third appearance in the College Football Playoff. It is the first time the Bulldogs have gone into the competition ranked as the top seed. Both times previously, in 2017 and 2021, Georgia was placed as the No. 3 overall seed.

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A Rare Meeting

The game will take place on New Year's Eve in Atlanta. Kickoff times were not immediately made available, but the clash between the Buckeyes and Dawgs will almost certainly kick in primetime on ESPN. 

Ohio State and Georgia have not faced one another since Kirk Herbstreit's final game for the Buckeyes in the 1993 Citrus Bowl. The No. 8 Bulldogs beat Herbstreit and No. 15 Ohio State 21-14. 

The meeting of the two means two of college football's biggest three TV brands will meet. Alabama missed out on the CFP for the first time since 2019. It is the first time either Bama or Clemson have not made it into the CFP. The Tigers, despite winning another ACC title, missed the CFP for the second year in a row. 

Meanwhile, the Bulldogs were listed as close to a touchdown for the game in very early action. Michigan is viewed as just under a double-digit favorite to beat TCU. Oddsmakers claim the Bulldogs are significant favorites to win it all - listing their double the probability to win over Michigan. 

Bulldogs Capture SEC Crown: 

Top-ranked Georgia improves to 13-0 for the first time in school history after a 50-30 victory over No. 14 LSU in the SEC Championship Game to capture its 14th SEC title in school history. The 14 titles is the second most in the SEC.

*The 2022 senior class added to its school record for wins as it now stands at 47-5.

*The Bulldogs have won 15 straight going back to last season’s CFP semifinal/Capital One Orange Bowl win over No. 2 Michigan.  

*This is the 2nd SEC title in the Kirby Smart era (the first since 2017) as the Bulldogs are now 79-15 in his seven seasons at the helm. 

*With today’s win, Georgia improves to 9-2 all-time as the No. 1 ranked CFP team including 4-0 in 2022.

*Senior QB Stetson Bennett becomes the 4th Bulldog to earn SEC Championship Game MVP honors (David Greene, QB-’02, D.J. Shockley, QB-’05, Roquan Smith, LB-’17). The Bulldogs are now 4-6 in the SEC Championship Game and 2-3 versus LSU.

Bulldogs Tally 50 Points:

*Georgia carried a 35-10 lead to halftime and won 50-30 with 529 yards of offense on 73 plays. 

*The 35 points tied the mark for most in an SEC Championship Game first half as Alabama led Florida 35-17 in 2020.

*Georgia came in ranked 12th nationally in Scoring (38.2 ppg) and now outscored foes 279-67 in opening half and 115-23 in the 1st qtr.

*After an LSU TD in the first quarter to tie it at 7-all, Georgia responded with a 75-yard TD drive on seven plays to take a 14-7 lead.

*Senior QB Stetson Bennett (23-for-29 for 274 yards, 4 TDs) finished the 1st half 19-for-24 for 214 yards and 4 TDs to four different Bulldogs. (3-yarder to Brock Bowers, 22-yarder to Ladd McConkey, 14-yarder to Darnell Washington, 3-yarder to Dillon Bell). 

*Bennett now has 269 completions this season which ties the single season record, also by Eric Zeier in 1993.

*Sophomore Brock Bowers posted a team-high six catches for 81 yards and a TD while RS-sophomore Ladd McConkey had five catches in the first half for 69 yards and a TD. McConkey (knee) did not return in the second half.

*Following a Red Zone stop by the defense, Georgia put together a 95-yard drive on eight plays in 4:27 to make it 42-17. A key play in the drive was a 51-yard scamper by Kendall Milton while Kenny McIntosh capped the drive with a 2-yard score, his ninth of year.

*Georgia converted a two-point play when AD Mitchell tossed one to Darnell Washington to make it 50-23 with 13:13 left in the game. It was the first successful two-point play since Bennett ran in for one against Arkansas in 2020.

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