at Athens, Ga. • Sept. 23 • 10:30 a.m. (MT) • LFS (and in Colo. on KTVD)
Head Coach: Mark Richt (6th season)
2006 Record: 3-0
The UGA offense took a blow earlier this month when veteran quarterback Joe Tereshinski was lost to an injury (he's out several weeks). In Tereshinski's absence, the reins have been handed to true freshman Matthew Stafford. The Dawgs plucked Stafford out of Big 12 country in February when the No. 2-rated QB prospect by Scout.com, from Dallas, Texas, signed with Georgia. Stafford has completed 51.2 percent of his passes, while throwing three picks and one touchdown in 41 pass attempts.
Georgia passers spread the ball around – six players (running backs, wide receivers and a tight end) have caught three balls or more. (Starting split end Mario Raley is doubtful for the game with an elbow injury.)
UGA's offensive line averages 316 pounds across and is led by four-year starter and all-SEC tight tackle Daniel Inman, who will face off against CU defensive end Abraham Wright (5 sacks) in some situations.
Player to Watch: The 6-3, 228-pound Stafford led Georgia to a 34-0 victory in his first start last week. Can the Colorado defense — which has played well the past two games — rattle the rookie?
UGA also boasts a solid and productive group of linebackers, led by strongside ‘backer Danny Verdun Wheeler, who leads the team with 15 stops. Rover Tra Battle is a veteran in the secondary.
Player to Watch: Moses, who should have NFL scouts drooling with a good season, had 11.5 sacks in 2005.
Placekicker Brandon Coutu is among the best in the country, and has hit all seven of his field goal attempts, including a 55-yarder.
UGA 2006 Statistical Leaders
PASSING: Matthew Stafford 21-41-318, 1 TD, 3 INT
RUSHING: Danny Ware 23-159/6.9, 2 TD
RECEIVING: Kenneth Harris 5-82/16.4
TACKLES: Danny Verdun Wheeler 15
SACKS: Charles Johnson 1.5
INT: Kelin Johnson 1
PUNTING: Gordon Ely-Kelso 9/46.4
PR: Asher Allen 4/13.5
KOR: Thomas Brown 4/22.5
NOTES: Under Richt, the Bulldogs have been one of the best teams in the country, finishing in the Top 10 of the AP and Coaches' polls each of the past four seasons. They're 55-13 under Richt, the sixth-best winning percentage in the country since the 2001 season. That includes a 7-2 mark against ranked foes.
Prediction: The Buffs give Mason Crosby a couple of attempts, but it's not nearly enough.
Georgia 23, Colorado 6