Saturday, September 17, 2011

Dawgs Win Big


With today’s 59-0 victory, the Dawgs posted their first shutout since the Vanderbilt game in 2010 and sixth overall in the Mark Richt era and second under current defensive coordinator Todd Grantham. Georgia beat the Commodores 43-0 in that contest. Georgia’s 59 points today was the most since the Dawgs trounced Kentucky 62-17 in Lexington in 2004. The Dawgs’ 59-point margin of victory is the most under Richt and the most since 1994 when they crushed Northeast Louisiana here 70-6. Georgia is now 42-7 against non-conference teams under Richt. This was the first-ever meeting with Coastal Carolina.

Sanford Stadium did not sell out on Saturday for the first time since the Georgia Tech game in Nov. 25, 2000, which was Jim Donnan’s final home game as head coach. Today broke a streak of 64 straight sellouts. The official attendance for Saturday’s game was 91,946. A capacity crowd for the facility is 92,746.

Senior PK Blair Walsh set two career marks versus the Chanticleers. With Walsh’s eight PATs in the game, he is now the school record holder with 152 career PATs. Billy Bennett (2000-03) had the record at 148. Walsh finished with 11 points in the game., and he recovered a fumble. At the beginning of the second quarter, Walsh drilled a career-long 56-yard field goal to put the Dawgs up 38-0. This is the longest field goal for Georgia since Brandon Coutu connected on a 58 yarder in 2005. In his career, Walsh is now 9-of-14 from 50 or more yards, which is second only to Kevin Butler’s 11.

Redshirt sophomore quarterback Aaron Murray was 18-for-26 in just more than two quarters with 188 yards and three passing touchdowns. Both junior Tavarres King and freshman Malcolm Mitchell hauled in their second touchdowns of the year. King finished with a career-high six catches for 65 yards with 2 TDs while Mitchell had six catches for 43 yards. Murray also shot in for a 1-yard scoring run. Backup QB Hutson Mason also snuck in for his first career touchdown run from one yard out and ended the afternoon 6-for-9 for 68 yards.

In his first career start, freshman RB Isaiah Crowell had a 27-yard scoring run in the first minutes of the opening quarter. This is Crowell’s third touchdown this season after he scored one rushing and one receiving last week versus #12 South Carolina. Crowell finished with 86 yards rushing on 16 carries and had one catch for 12 yards.

Junior LB Michael Gilliard paced the Dawgs with eight tackles today in his first career start. At halftime, senior CB Brandon Boykin led the team with four tackles, including two tackles for loss. Boykin ended up with four tackles total and had one catch for nine yards on offense and one kickoff return for 47 yards.

Junior FS Bacarri Rambo had an interception and a 43-yard return before fumbling later in the play in the second period. This is Rambo’s team-leading second of the year and the fourth of the year for the Dawgs. Late in the third quarter, redshirt sophomore CB Jordan Love forced a fumble that Blair Walsh recovered. Hutson Mason hit junior TE Orson Charles for a 33-yard scoring strike on the next play. Junior Ty Frix then recovered a fumble on a punt to give the Dawgs the ball back deep in Coastal Carolina territory. Junior TB Carlton Thomas finished that possession with a 17-yard TD run. Georgia has now forced four INTs and two fumbles and converted them into 17 points.

The Chanticleers were unable to convert Rambo’s fumble into any points. Opponents have now scored 28 points on five Bulldog miscues.

The Dawgs had three first-time starters against the Chanticleers. Freshman Damian Swann got the nod at CB for the first time in his career. Junior ILB Mike Gilliard made his first career start, filling in for injured senior Christian Robinson. The third first-time starter was freshman RB Isaiah Crowell. Junior SS Shawn Williams started his third consecutive game, but his first at ILB for the injured Alec Ogletree.
Also of note, sophomore OLB T.J. Stripling returned on special teams for the first time since injuring his leg at Colorado in 2010. Four true freshmen – OT Watts Dantzler, OG Hunter Long and OG David Andrews and OLB Ray Drew – also played for the first time in their careers.

Georgia’s captains on Saturday are senior C Ben Jones, senior FB Bruce Figgins, senior TE Orson Charles and senior CB/KOR Brandon Boykin.

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