The Bulldogs return four starters on the offensive line. Senior LT John Theus, junior C Brandon Kubla-now, junior RG Greg Pyke and senior RT Kolton Houston all started in Georgia’s opener after only three-year starting C David Andrews graduated. Andrews was drafted by the New England Patriots and made the 53-man roster. Sophomore Isaiah Wynn started at LG against ULM for his second career start.
Georgia’s defense is led by second-year coordinator Jeremy Pruitt. In game one this year, Georgia held ULM to 14 points as the Warhawks ran 51 plays for 255 yards. The game was terminated with 9:54 left due to lightning. Pruitt has six starters back from a defense that posted two shutouts and held #23 Missouri and #9 Auburn to a combined seven points in 2014. Senior OLB Jordan Jenkins ranks as the top returning tackler (2014 totals: 70 stops, 9.5 TFLs, 5 sacks) while junior OLB Leonard Floyd had a team-high six sacks, 8.5 TFLs and 55 tackles last year. In the win over ULM in this year’s season opener, Floyd was the co-leader with eight stops, including 1.5 tackles for loss, and Jenkins had seven stops with a sack. Jenkins is the SEC’s active leader in sacks (16) and TFLs (30.5). The Bulldogs had three first-time starters on defense last Saturday. Senior ILB Jake Ganus, who transferred from UAB, and true freshman DB Rico McGraw started and they had three tackles each. Sophomore CB Malkom Parrish also got his first start and finished with two stops.
So far this season, in their first 2 games the Georgia Bulldogs have outscored their opponents 82 to 28.
The Bulldogs hold a 47-18-2 edge over the Gamecocks. However, South Carolina has won
four out of the last five games, including a 38-35 victory in 2014. Georgia handed the
Gamecocks a 41-30 loss the last time the teams played in Athens in 2013.
The Gamecocks opened the 2015 season with a 17-13 win over North Carolina in Charlotte on September 3, then fell to Kentucky in their home and SEC opener last week by a 26-22 score. Georgia opened with a 51-14 win over Louisiana-Lafayette, then opened conference play with a 31-14 road win at Vanderbilt.
South Carolina went 2-3 on the road in 2014, and are 14-8 in their last 22 true road contests. Five of the eight road losses in that stretch came to teams ranked in the top 11 in the country: at No. 8 Arkansas in 2011, at No. 9 LSU and No. 3 Florida in 2012, at No. 11 Georgia in 2013, and at No. 5 Auburn in 2014. They also lost at No. 23 Clemson in 2014.
Carolina starting quarterback Connor Mitch will be sidelined for at least a month after suffering a sprained right shoulder in the loss to Kentucky. Mitch is also suffering from
a hip pointer he suffered in the win over UNC.
Former walk-on Perry Orth, who spent part of the summer working in a local grocery store, is slated to make his first career start at Georgia. Orth, who went on scholarship prior to the start of the season, had completed 3-of-5 passes in his career before being thrust into ex-
tensive duty last week against Kentucky. He responded by completing 13-of-20 passes for 179 yards with one touchdown and one interception. His 33-yard fourth-quarter TD pass to
Jerell Adams was the first scoring pass of his career.
• Bulldogs are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS loss.
• Bulldogs are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games on grass.
• Bulldogs are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games overall.
• Gamecocks are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games following a S.U. loss.
• Gamecocks are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 conference games.
• Gamecocks are 2-7 ATS in their last 9 games in September.
The Bottom Line: Georgia is too much of a cohesive team to even blink.
Selection: Georgia -16.5