|Todd Gurley and Georgia had no problems with the Georgia Tech defense. (US Presswire)|
GEORGIA WON: "Clean Old-Fashioned Hate" proved to be a clean old-fashioned bludgeoning Saturday, as Georgia scored touchdowns on its first three possessions and never looked back on its way to the largest margin of victory in the series since a 51-7 win in 2002. Aaron Murray was as sharp as he has been all season, finishing 14-of-17 for 215 yards with two touchdowns and no picks, and tailbacks Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall combined for 163 yards and four scores.
WHY GEORGIA WON: Of course, as spectacular as Murray and the Dawgs offense were, for most of the season it's been only marginally more difficult to whip cream than the Georgia Tech defense, which finishes the season having given up an average of 44 points to their three FBS nonconference opponents. (Remember, too, that the first two of those -- Middle Tennessee State and BYU -- aren't exactly offensive juggernauts.) But no one would call Tech's triple-option offense a pushover -- the Jackets entered the game third in the FBS in rushing and 13th in yards per play.
No matter: a week after tuning up for the option against Georgia Southern, the Dawgs put on a bend-but-don't-break clinic against the Jackets. Tech's first drive set the tone: nine methodical, well-executed, successful rushing plays to move the ball to the Georgia 2-yard line ... at which point Bacarri Rambo stripped Robert Godhigh clean and returned the ball 49 yards to set up the Dawgs' second touchdown. Early in the fourth quarter, the Jackets already had drives that ended at the Georgia 2-, 21-, 42-, 19-, 24- and 27-yard lines ... and a grand total of three points.
The moral of the story? A precision scheme and well-drilled execution can go a long way -- like, for instance, inside the 30. To go farther, it helps to have athletes like Rambo, Jarvis Jones, Alec Ogletree, etc. And those athletes were all on the Georgia defense.
WHEN GEORGIA WON: With 2:49 left in the second quarter, Murray hit Rhett McGowan for an 11-yard touchdown pass, capping an easy-as-easy-gets 6-play, 63-yard drive that put Georgia up 28-3. Between the Jackets' inability to score quickly and Georgia's ability to score at will, the game was over.
WHAT GEORGIA WON: Not much -- just the right to advance to the BCS Championship Game with a win in next Saturday's SEC Championship Game against Alabama*. Between that little accomplishment, it coming against the hated Jackets, and the lopsided score, Saturday went every bit as well as any Georgia fan could have hoped.
*Assuming Alabama doesn't suffer the worst bit-spitting of all time vs. Auburn.
WHAT GEORGIA TECH LOST: The Jackets, amazingly, can still qualify for a BCS berth by defeating Florida State in the ACC Championship Game next week. But the Georgia game is still the biggest rivalry date on the Tech calendar, and Mark Richt is now a Jackets-infuriating 11-1 in the series. ACC accomplishments or not, this one is going to sting (if you'll pardon the pun).