The Bulldogs broke the school mark for most penalties in a game, committing 18 for 129 yards Saturday to help Middle Tennessee State stay in the game. The Bulldogs had a whopping 13 for 99 yards in the first half alone, and got the record-breaker with 6:10 in the third quarter.
"It's not the sign of a disciplined football team," said Georgia coach Mark Richt, adding later, "we did enough foolish and undisciplined things that would certainly get us beaten some time in the future."
The school record for penalties was 14, set two years ago against Georgia Tech.
The multiple infractions hurt Georgia on both sides of the ball, most notably during the Bulldogs' second drive. Three holding penalties, coupled with an MTSU sack of quarterback David Greene, sent the Dogs backwards most of the drive before Georgia punted.
"We weren't very disciplined overall," Greene said. "The delay of game (in the second quarter) was my fault. We had a bunch of holding calls, late hits — you name it, we did it."
Four more Georgia penalties on the Blue Raiders' ensuing drive helped set up a Brian Kelly 42-yard field goal with 10:30 left in the second quarter that briefly tied the game.
STILL KICKIN': Georgia kicker Billy Bennett continued to move up in the record books.
The senior kicked three field goals Saturday for 62 in his career, moving him one ahead of Kanon Parkman for second place all-time. Kevin Butler holds the record with 77.
Bennett also had two PATs to move within two of Hap Hines for third place all-time, with 115. Bennett extended his PAT streak to 93, the second-longest currently in the nation.
The streak almost came to an end in the fourth quarter after Ronnie Powell's 1-yard touchdown run. Off a bad snap, Bennett attempted to throw for a 2-point play rather than kick it. Though the pass failed, Bennett's streak is still active.
Texas kicker Dusty Mangum currently leads the nation with 101 straight PATs heading into Saturday.
AREA TIES: The game was something of a homecoming -- for Middle Tennessee State.
Over a third of the Blue Raiders' roster is from the state, led by head coach Andy McCollum, who is from Marietta.
From the Middle Georgia area, sophomore defensive end Devarick Scandrett is from Forsyth and attended Mary Persons. Scandrett finished the game with one tackle and a 7-yard sack of Greene in the first quarter.
"It definitely feels real good to be here," Scandrett said. "We came in as an underseed team. We were able to perform and get some sacks. We couldn't come up with the win, but it was good to get back in Georgia."
INJURIES: The biggest loss for the Bulldogs on Saturday was wide receiver Fred Gibson, who pulled his hamstring on Georgia's final kickoff return. Richt didn't know the extent of the injury.
Georgia also lost tailback Tony Milton to a leg bruise in the first quarter. His status for next week is also unknown. Tight end Ben Watson didn't play because of an old ankle injury that flared up last week against Clemson.
Redshirt freshman defensive lineman Marcus Jackson had thumb surgery on Thursday. Richt hopes that doctors will be able to put a cast on the hand and have Jackson back in the lineup this week against South Carolina.
ETC: The announced crowd of 92,058 was a sellout. Thanks to the additions Georgia made to Sanford Stadium, it was the largest crowd ever to watch a football game in the state of Georgia. ... Quarterback D.J. Shockley lined up at tailback for one play in the fourth quarter and caught a 1-yard swing pass from Greene. It was only the second catch of Shockley's career; he had a catch against Kentucky last season. ...
Freshman Sean Bailey had his first career catch late in the fourth quarter, a 15-yarder from Shockley that netted a first down. ... Georgia is now 58-15-1 in home openers. ... Before the game, the SEC championship flag was raised in the east upper deck of the stadium. ... Redshirt freshman quarterback Joe Tereshinski III made his first appearance at Sanford Stadium. His father, Joe Jr., was the starting center on the Bulldogs' 1976 SEC championship team, while his grandfather, Joe Sr., was on the 1942 Georgia team that won the Rose Bowl as well as the 1946 squad that won the SEC and the Sugar Bowl. The youngest Tereshinksi made his first appearance for Georgia last week against Clemson at quarterback and long snapper.