Wonder what could have been of this season had Georgia not let road games at LSU and Auburn get so far away from them that their furious comebacks didn’t matter; if a season opener against UTC was a win and not a loss. Makes you wonder just how on the bubble these Dawgs would be without those costly slip-ups.
But “what could have beens” are for a hypothetical world we don’t live in. The world we live in is one where UGA must win four games in a row in Nashville to get to the NCAAs, and South Carolina, stumbling down the stretch, probably doesn’t have to win any.
Still, this has to be considered the best win of the basketball season for Mark Fox and UGA. A road 74-72 win over the Chickens, who have now lost four of their last six games after starting the season 21-3, is nothing to sneeze at. UGA has swept the best team South Carolina has trotted onto the hardwood in a decade.
These sorts of things can happen. Remember last season when a woeful South Carolina team swept NCAA-bound UGA? That was last year, and this is this, and the two teams are in different situations completely. This was a good win for the Dawgs to be sure, but any win at this point in UGA’s season right now is a good thing. This thing looked all sorts of sideways after UGA lost four of five games - including a miserable stinker at Auburn - in the of middle February.
Don’t get confused - beating an NCAA team is not the same as being an NCAA team, but winning beats losing every day of the year. The big thing to take away from this win is that all of the end-of-game fight Georgia has shown this season finally resulted in a win.
“People can count us out, but we don’t quit,” J.J. Frazier said after the game.
No, they don't quit, but they haven’t always won with late-game surges, either. Tonight that was the difference - UGA continued to fight, and the deficit wasn’t so large that they were within reach of winning.
“We need to be determined - not desperate,” Fox said after the game.
He’s right, and the Bulldogs will have to be that way four wins in a row in Nashville if this season is to be saved.