Sunday, September 29, 2013
What we learned: Week 5
By David Ching
ATHENS, Ga. -- Here are three things we learned about No. 9 Georgia in Saturday's 44-41 win against No. 6 LSU.
Murray's got guts: If you want confirmation on why it's a good thing to have a fifth-year senior quarterback, watch a replay of Aaron Murray leading Georgia's offense on the Bulldogs' final scoring drive. LSU had just taken its first lead since the opening quarter and all Murray did was go 4-for-4, driving the Bulldogs 75 yards in six plays and reclaiming the lead with a 25-yard touchdown pass to Justin Scott-Wesley. It was a thing of beauty for one of the nation's best quarterbacks.
Defense still has work to do: Let's start with a compliment. Georgia knew coming in that slowing down LSU's running game was its first duty. The Tigers finished with 77 rushing yards on 36 attempts and had just 13 rushing yards on 15 tries at halftime. Otherwise, it was a fairly putrid performance by Todd Grantham's defense. LSU ran 73 plays for 449 yards and Tigers quarterback Zach Mettenberger looked like an All-Pro, passing for a career-high 372 yards and three touchdowns.
Gurley makes it go: Say what you will about Murray's brilliance -- and he was once again outstanding -- but the Bulldogs are a much scarier team with a healthy Todd Gurley. Georgia's All-SEC tailback left the game with an ankle sprain early in the second quarter having already rushed for 73 yards on eight carries. Keith Marshall did an OK job in Gurley's absence, but Georgia is simply not as explosive when defenses don't have to worry about Gurley's combination of speed and power. Gurley watched the second half from the sideline with his left foot in a walking boot and Georgia coach Mark Richt said after the game that he was unsure when to expect Gurley back.