Win #700 a big one for Dawgs

ATHENS – Georgia coach Mark Richt believes Saturday's upset victory over Auburn joins last year's SEC Championship Game win over LSU as the Bulldogs' most complete game of his tenure.

For the Georgia players, it's just as sweet, too.

"With everything going how it was, for this team to come in here and do what we did to a pretty good team, it's right up there with the SEC Championship wins and big victories in general," junior cornerback Paul Oliver said.

Georgia (7-4, 4-4 SEC) whipped the formerly fifth-ranked Tigers 37-15 in a game that could have been even more lopsided. Auburn (9-2, 5-2) fell to No. 15.

The best part for the Bulldogs is they get a week off to let their first meaningful victory of the season sink in a bit. Georgia has its only open date of the season Saturday and will return to the field Nov. 25 against No. 18 Georgia Tech in Sanford Stadium.

"This off week is going to be huge for us," quarterback Matthew Stafford said. "We're going to be slugging along. We've had a rough road. This is going to be good for us, and then we're going to get back and work hard toward Tech."

The Bulldogs will practice a maximum of two days this week and perhaps only one, Richt said.

"I definitely want them to get some rest, get caught up on some school work if they need to," he said.

The break may be bad timing for Stafford, who finally seems to have found a rhythm. The true freshman had his best collegiate outing against the Tigers, throwing for 219 yards and most impressively completing all his passes to Georgia players.

"It's sweet," he said. "It's something you dream about as a kid, and hopefully there's more to come."

Richt compared Saturday's win to the Bulldogs' 2001 victory at Tennessee, in which freshman quarterback David Greene led a last-minute touchdown drive for a 26-24 upset victory.

"That one had a lot more drama at the end, but the significance I think is the same for both those games," he said, "especially when you want to talk about a freshman quarterback and how he has progressed."

Georgia won 22 of the 28 SEC games and two SEC East championships the rest of that season and the three years that followed.


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