For the first time since the 2009 National Championship game, the Texas Longhorns are playing in a New Year’s Six Bowl. Their prize for their success? A matchup with one of the top teams in the country, the Georgia Bulldogs.
Georgia had a legitimate argument for playing in the College Football Playoff, but the CFP committee valued the Oklahoma Sooners’ conference championship than any of the Bulldogs’ accolades. So like the Longhorns, they find themselves taking their conference’s bid in the Allstate Sugar Bowl, while the Alabama Crimson Tide play for a National Championship.
The Bulldogs rank in the top 15 of nine statistical categories overall, as well as No. 3 overall in the S&P+. According to advanced statistics, Georgia boasts the No. 3 offense and the No. 16 defense in the country, paced by two dynamic running backs in D’Andre Swift and Elijah Holyfield and sophomore phenom Jake Fromm.
The Longhorns have already tied their most successful season since 2012, and with a win over their SEC opponent players and coaches may finally be able to answer whether or not Texas is back.
- The BON staff thinks that Texas will struggle with Georgia, but has advantages at some key spots.
- Texas has to find a way to be physical against a talented Bulldogs team.
“It’s a culture. That’s literally what we do,” junior wide receiver Collin Johnson said. “Smash-mouth football, that’s all we know. Just hitting and going out there and playing football the way it’s supposed to be played. That play was the epitome of that.”
- The Longhorn Republic podcast breaks down the X’s and O’s of the Georgia Bulldogs.
- Thorpe Award winner Deandre Baker will sit out the Sugar Bowl.
- Georgia’s ground game will challenge the Texas defense in new ways.
Two of the top six rushers in the SEC, despite each ranking outside of the top five in carries, Swift and Holyfield feature similar, yet complementary skillsets, which provides additional complications when attempting to game plan against them; successfully, at least.
- Freshman S Caden Sterns (knee) - will play
- Freshman DT Moro Ojomo (ankle) - cleared to play
- Freshman Al’vonte Woodard (shoulder) - doubtful
- Freshman WR Joshua Moore (shoulder) — out
- Sophomore OL Patrick Hudson (illness) — out
- Freshman TE Rob Cummins (knee) — out
- Sophomore LB/DE Marquez Bimage (shoulder) — out
How to Watch:
Time: 7:45 p.m. Central
Radio: Texassports.com, Longhorns IMG Radio Network. Broadcasts are also available on Sirius 132, XM 199, and App Ch. 953
Online Streaming: WatchESPN
Odds: Georgia -12.5