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Thursday Dawg Bites Is Soaking In One More High-Stakes SEC Title Game

Georgia v Georgia Tech Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images

Atlanta - Georgia - Alabama.

The combo of those three words has come to mean something large is at stake when Georgia and Alabama play in Atlanta.

So far, it’s been the definition of insanity for Georgia fans - doing the same thing over and over again with the expectation of different results. Sure, the 2021 loss was not gutwrenching, but faceplanting on national TV and casual fans wrongly labeling you a fraud is no fun.

Saturday may as well be what the 2012 game between the Dawgs and Tide was - a play-in for a national title game. Unless some bizarre things happen, a loss to Alabama ends Georgia’s three-peat hopes. Back in 2012, Georgia had to watch as Alabama, a few yards better in the Georgia Dome, easily pasted Notre Dame.

This time will also be the last of an era. If this were already an eight-team playoff, this game would not have the weight and urgency on it. That’s why ticket prices on the secondary market befit that of a national title game, not a conference title game.

In truth, this may be more of a must-win for Georgia as a program. If Alabama wins, the perception will be that one game in Indianapolis allowed Georgia’s run of dominance to begin, and that Alabama also ended it.

This goes against any Munsoning, but of all games against Alabama in Atlanta, this is the one Georgia most should win.

In 2017 it was a ‘glad to be here’ moment in the midst of the Rose Bowl euphoria.

In 2018, Georgia on paper was not the better team and the expectation was for the Tide to win easily.

Sure, the 2021 loss in Atlanta stung, but it wasn’t a must-win given Georgia already being locked into a CFP spot. Win or lose, Saturday will be the last of huge things being at stake in the SEC title game.

Is it time to pay more attention to the Hoop Dawgs? Wednesday night’s turn of events says yes. Georgia erased a 17-point deficit in the final eight minutes to win it on Justin Hill’s buzzer-beater in the 68-66 victory against Florida State, a team that’s an ACC title contender and NCAA team most years,

A sign of the times, indeed. Carson Beck returning for another year may come down to UGA’s financial incentives. Much like NIL, you can bellyache all that you wish about these kind of things being part of the game, but it’s the way that the game is played today, and the teams that utilize it best will be most successful. Yes, Dabo Swinney may have gotten some cheap rah-rah points for his takes against NIL and the transfer portal, but that didn’t help him beat Duke and Florida State.

Jordan Davis. He sings pretty good.

In the midst of having articles written by AI, SI.com, formerly the bastion of some of the best sports journalism, decided that winning a few early games and running off an offensive coordinator midseason among other things was worthy of being named Sportsperson Of The Year.

Go Dawgs!