11 15 2004 Notebook

ATHENS -- Georgia is out of the national championship picture, out of the Top 10 and all but out of the running for the SEC East championship.

Now the Bulldogs, who started the season No. 3 in the country and dropped to No. 11 following Saturday's 24-6 whipping at the hands of Auburn, have nothing to worry about except in-state rival Georgia Tech. And that game doesn't come around for another two weeks.

"It's our last home game, it's senior day, it's a game against our in-state rival," Coach Mark Richt said. "All those things really ought to help us get excited about playing that football game."

Georgia (8-2, 6-2 SEC) had national championship hopes entering the season and was picked by several national analysts to play for title. Now, its only remaining goals are to finish with 10 victories and in the nation's top 10. The Bulldogs are No. 10 in the coaches poll.

"If we could win from here on out, we could certainly finish in the Top 10," Richt said. "I think that's a worthy goal."

The Tigers (10-0, 7-0) won so convincingly that they moved into a tie with Oklahoma for the No. 2 spot in the Associated Press poll on Sunday. And Richt offered no more excuses Sunday than he did after the game.

The Tigers outgained Georgia 404-279 and were never threatened after halftime.

"Their offense was probably as much of the story of the day as their defense was," Richt said. "They were just very, very much in sync and played beautifully."

Georgia still could play in a BCS bowl game, but that would require Tennessee to lose to both Kentucky and Vanderbilt and for the Bulldogs to beat Auburn in the SEC Championship Game. Those chances seem so remote that Richt didn't even address them Sunday.

Due to their off week, the Bulldogs won't practice today. They will gather for meetings, though.

"We'll look at some film and try to get that game behind us," Richt said.

Georgia will return to the practice field on Tuesday and work out again Wednesday. They'll probably practice again Thursday and then take a long weekend, Richt said.

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