Dawgs Thrash Clemson: News and Notes

ATHENS - News and notes from Georgia's 45-21 win over Clemson.

*Impressive Start: No. 12 Georgia enjoyed a successful season opener with a 45-21 win over #16 Clemson as the Bulldogs tallied 328 rushing yards including a record night from Todd Gurley, and the defense shut out the Tigers in the second half, limiting them to 15 yards on 22 plays and no points.

Georgia improves to 91-27-3 in season openers including 11-3 under Mark Richt. The Bulldogs now lead the series over Clemson 42-18-4. Georgia is 3-2 against the Tigers when both are ranked in the top 20. The Bulldogs are now 53-10 against non-conference teams including 37-1 at home under Richt.

*Gurley Ties NCAA Record With 100-Yd. Return And Sets School Record With 293 All-Purpose Yards: Junior TB Todd Gurley ran back his second career 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to knot the score at 21-all midway through the second quarter. Gurley took his first career return 100 yards for a score against Buffalo during his first game as a Bulldog in 2012. Tonight’s latest scamper marked the fifth 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in school history (current Philadelphia Eagle Brandon Boykin has the other three). Entering 2014 season, 348 players had tallied a 100-yard kickoff return in NCAA history.

Gurley also finished with his 14th 100-yard rushing game after going for a career-high 198 yards on 15 carries with three rushing scores. He scampered in for a 23-yard touchdown to tie the game at 7-7 at the 6:36 mark in the first period. Gurley then had an 18-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter before taking his final carry 51 yards for his third score. Gurley’s 293 all-purpose yards (198 Rushing, 100 KO ret., Minus 5 Rec.) is a school record (the old mark was 290, Rodney Hampton, 1987).

True freshman running back Nick Chubb got his first opportunity and finished with 4 carries for 70 yards, including a 47-yard scoring run. Senior QB Hutson Mason finished 18-for-26 for 131 yards. Mason put the Bulldogs up 14-7 at the 0:35 mark in the opening period with a 2-yard touchdown run.

*Tackles: Senior ILB Amarlo Herrera finished with a game-high 12 tackles and two sacks and 3.5 TFL. Sophomore OLB Leonard Floyd added seven tackles and two sacks. Senior MLB Ramik Wilson had seven tackles while junior JLB Jordan Jenkins had six stops. Junior DE Josh Dawson also tallied his first career sack to stall a fourth quarter Clemson drive deep in Bulldog territory.

*Marshall Ties SEC Record: At the 11:27 mark in the third quarter, Junior PK Marshall Morgan drilled a 27-yard field goal to tie the SEC record with 18 consecutive field goals made in his career. He tied former Tennessee PK Fuad Reveiz for the league’s all-time mark.

*Barber Productive: Junior punter Collin Barber had five punts for 45.5 yards with three inside the 20 and a long of 60 yards. Sophomore Reggie Davis had seven punt returns for 37 yards.

*Points Off Turnovers: Each team forced a turnover but failed to convert the miscues into any points. Michael Bennett fumbled the ball in the first quarter on the Tiger 9-yard line and Clemson recovered. But the Tigers then went three-and-out after ending up in a 4th-and-11 situation. At the 5:46 mark in the second quarter, redshirt freshman CB Aaron Davis snagged his first career interception on the UGA 48-yard line. The Bulldogs then ran three plays and had to punt.

*Starters: Six first-time starters took the field for the Bulldogs. Senior N Mike Thornton, freshman CB Dominick Sanders and redshirt freshman S Aaron Davis started on defense. Redshirt sophomore OG Greg Pyke, sophomore OG Brandon Kublanow and senior FB Taylor Maxey got the nod on offense.

Seven true freshmen have played for the Bulldogs through two quarters. In addition to Sanders and McKenzie, Sony Michel, Nick Chubb, Jeb Blazevich, Rico Johnson and Lorenzo Carter all took the field.

*Captains: Senior QB Hutson Mason, senior C David Andrews, junior DE Sterling Bailey and senior ILB Kosta Vavlas served as the captains against the Tigers.

*Up Next: The Bulldogs (1-0, 0-0 SEC) have an off-week on Sept. 6 before traveling to Columbia, S.C. to take on South Carolina (0-1, 0-1) on Sept. 13. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:30 on CBS.

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