"The question I've been hearing the most is, can we live up to the expectations we have this year," safety Thomas Davis said.
The No. 3 Bulldogs finally get to begin answering that question this
week. Georgia begins the season Saturday by hosting Georgia Southern at
3 p.m. in Sanford Stadium. The game will be televised by Fox Sports
"You can see the guys beginning to sense it and to smell it,"
Mark Richt said.
Richt said he felt a renewed enthusiasm from his team during Monday
night's practice, the first game-week workout of the season. Tuesday the
team held its first weekly news conference of the season, another sign
that the opener is not far away.
"I can't even speak it in words," fullback Des Williams said.
everybody is tired of battling each other. We're ready to take it out on
"Everybody is pretty excited to see how all of our talent and all of
our preparation is going to come together."
The hype for this season began to build months ago as the Bulldogs
were ranked high in all the summer rankings. The Sporting News even has
picked Georgia to win the national championship, and the Bulldogs are in
the top five nationally of every other major poll.
"I'd have to guess there are at least 15 teams that have a real
legitimate shot (at the national title) when you just look at the talent
level," Richt said. "Now things just have to go their way."
Georgia's players were happy Tuesday to have something to discuss other
"Talk can only go so far," center Russ Tanner said. "All
the polls and
rankings don't mean anything if you don't go out there and perform."
This is the third all-time meeting between the Bulldogs and the Eagles.
Georgia won both the previous games, 34-7 in 1992 and 29-7 in 2000.
The Bulldogs are coming off back-to-back seasons that were the best
since the 43-4-1 record Georgia posted from 1980-83. This group has gone
24-4 with two appearances in the SEC Championship Game the last two
"We've been waiting on this moment to get here since we finished
playing last year," junior safety Thomas Davis said.
Many observers feel this team could match the national title team of
1980. This is the first time in the program's history the Bulldogs have
been ranked in the preseason top five.
"I'm glad our team is finally getting a chance to show what they're
about," Richt said.
Can Georgia Live up to the Expectations?
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