ATHENS, Ga. (AP) - The Georgia Bulldogs realize how fortunate they are.
Downright lucky, for that matter.
It's not often that a team will get not one, not two, but three chances to clinch a spot in the Southeastern Conference championship game from the highly competitive Eastern Division.
"We're so thankful," defensive end Quentin Moses said. "We know we're lucky to be put in this situation. Now, we've got to make the best of it."
The No. 14 Bulldogs (7-2, 5-2 SEC) were unbeaten three weeks ago, still a part of the national championship mix and poised to clinch the East. That all ended with a 14-10 loss to perennial nemesis Florida.
After an off week, Georgia caught a huge break when South Carolina knocked off the Gators. The Bulldogs couldn't take advantage, losing a 31-30 heartbreaker to Auburn later than night on a last-second field goal.
Will the third time be the charm?
It should be. Georgia hosts Kentucky (3-6, 2-4) on Saturday, trying again to earn a berth in the Dec. 3 championship game against a program that has lost eight straight to the Bulldogs. Then again, there's a bit of nervousness around Athens that a once-promising season could be on the verge of falling apart.
"We started out too good, we worked too hard to let this season slip away," Moses said. "We've got to finish strong and still try to make it a good year."
The normal powers in the East haven't stepped up to challenge the Bulldogs this season.
The Urban Meyer era got off to a rocky start at Florida, which managed to beat Georgia (when Bulldogs quarterback D.J. Shockley was out with an injury) but lost three other SEC games. Tennessee, the preseason favorite in the East and expected to be one of the nation's best teams, is struggling just to become bowl eligible.
In fact, if the No. 14 Bulldogs (7-2, 5-2 SEC) blow another one Saturday, Steve Spurrier and surprising South Carolina - the division's hottest team - would emerge from a three-way tie in the East to play in the title game.
For now, though, Georgia remains in control.