What are the Georgia Bulldogs chances of winning the BCS National Title this season? When analyzing Future odds, there are a few things that need to be considered, especially with college football.
The first thing I look at is schedule. You always have to assume the BCS is going too royally (enter expletive you use to describe the BCS) things up. You have to analyze the chances of a team going undefeated, and if not, the chances they can still make it to 1 or 2 in the polls with 1 loss. This typically requires a loss early in the schedule to a very good opponent. Lets look at how the Georgia Bulldogs stacks up this season.
Georgia Bulldogs Offense
The next thing I look at is returning QB. When you play college football, a returning QB makes the world of difference. You have to think about things outside of football. They understand the pressures of their students and classmates that they deal with in the classroom and walking around campus. They understand how to balance their playbook and classes (those that take them). They know how to lead the team and that can influence a team from winning one of the close early games, or losing. Georgia has Aaron Murray.
On offense, Georgia returns QB Aaron Murray as well as five other offensive players, two being offensive lineman. This is going to be Murray’s 3rd season, and he is the leader of the Bulldogs. Last year he passed for 3100+ yards and 35 touchdowns. Last year Georgia allowed 2.36 sacks per game, ranking them 85th in the country. It becomes a little bit more understandable when you see that they played: Boise State, South Carolina, Florida, Auburn, Miss St. and LSU.
This year, the offensive line should be much better, giving Murray more time to find good receivers. The Georgia Bulldog receivers are super talented, with 8 receivers returning that had a reception in 2011.
Because of this talent in the passing game, Georgia’s running game should open up. Even after losing Crowell, they have a deep core of RB that should take advantage of Murray widening the playing field. I have heard good things from Georgia camp, and they should have an ample amount of RBs to pound the rock.
So worst case scenario, I think their offense is as good as they were last year. I have many reasons to believe that it will be better though.
Georgia Bulldogs Defense
Their defense last year only allowed about 20 points per game. They also return 9 starters. I was almost going to mimic what Pezgordo said about Georgia’s defense which you can read here.
This defense is going to be the real deal. I thought that I would never, EVER see a defense that rivaled Alabama’s defense last year. I think this one will (as soon as suspended secondary players return). As I analyze the schedule, I don’t see too many teams that will put over 20 points on them, if any.
A look at the Georgia Bulldogs schedule
Week 1: Buffalo
This game is a no brainer. Buffalo may score 3 points, if they’re lucky. 1 win 0 losses.
Week 2: at Missouri
First real challenge of the season for the Georgia Bulldogs. This will be Missouri’s first game in the SEC, and they just won’t be ready. Georgia is too good on defense. It may be close, but Georgia takes this one probably by close to double digits. 2 wins, 0 losses.
Week 3: Florida Atlantic
Please. 3 wins, 0 losses.
Week 4: Vanderbilt
Game is at home, Georgia will be 3-0 after this one. Vandy just won’t be able to hang. Murray will sling it all over. 4 wins, 0 losses.
Week 5: Tennessee
I think Tennessee will surprise people this year. Once again, this game is at home. Tennessee won’t have the firepower to stay in this one either. 5 wins, 0 losses.
Week 6: at South Carolina
This is the first game I believe could go either way for Georgia. SC will have a good offense, with Lattimore leading the way. Last year I was on SC, this year I am on Georgia. I think Murray will be able to take advantage of SC’s secondary as long as the OL holds up. SC lost 5 defensive starters and Alshon Jeffrey on offense. I think Georgia takes this one by a FG. 6 wins, 0 losses (toss-up game).
Week 8: at Kentucky
7 wins, 0 losses.
Week 9: Florida
Game in Jacksonville. Georgia’s defense is too good for Florida’s offense with a new QB. May be close, but Georgia pulls it out. 8 wins, 0 losses.
Week 10: Ole Miss
As Chad Johnson says, “C’mon son!!!!” Ole Miss may have bit of a bounce back year this year with Hugh Freeze at the helm (at least more than people think) but there is zero chance they steal this one. They definitely will not steal this one from Georgia, at Georgia. I will possibly look at playing Ole Miss on this one. Spread will be huge and people will think Ole Miss is going to get crushed. Georgia will be coming off of big Florida game, and has Auburn the next week. 9 wins, 0 losses.
Week 11: at Auburn
This one is going to be rough. A lot of the future sits on this game I think. At Auburn is tough. I think Georgia comes into this one ranked top 3 in the nation. This will be Auburn’s 3rd home game in a row, but I think they could possibly be 6-3 at this point. Auburn returns 7 offensive starters, including a QB, and 9 defensive. Big upset spot for Georgia. I think Murray will be on another level, and will be a game changer. There won’t be a better defense in the NCAA than Georgia this year. 10 wins, 0 losses.
Week 12: Georgia Southern
Depending on this Georgia Southern team, I’d possibly play them as well here. No chance they win, but Georgia will be Top 3 in the country if they do as I assume, and coming off Auburn, with instate foe Georgia Tech next week, they will just want to get through this game. 11 wins, 0 losses.
Week 13: Georgia Tech
Game at home, should know if they’re going to SEC Championship already. Won’t want to lose this game. I think they’ll win it. 12 wins, 0 losses.
SEC Championship Game
Presumably against LSU or Alabama (one of these teams will have a loss already, since they play each other on November 3rd). Need a win, or depending on where the standings are, a VERY close game.
USC, Oklahoma/Texas is my bet. SEC vs. None SEC. We all know how this goes.
So things will be interesting for the Georgia Bulldogs. Let’s assume they lose a game in the season, to Missouri, SC or Auburn. They will still most likely be in the SEC Championship game, and a win over the SEC West Champ, would also catapult them in the standings. So even with a loss, there is still hope.
Georgia comes out 6th in the coaches’ poll. I think they could make their way to the Top 3 pretty easily. LSU (1) and Bama (2) play each other and Oregon (5) and USC (3) play each other, so there’s a loss for one of those teams.
Obviously a lot of Georgia’s hope ride on a few factors: Murray, the OL, the Secondary. This is their year and they know it. They drew an easy schedule, and this is their chance to prove themselves. In every regular season game, based on 2011 stats I have Georgia statistically favored in every one (does not take into account homefield, motivation, etc. – just stats).
You know who this team reminds me a lot of? Alabama 2011. They have a stout defense that I think will be ranked #1 by the end of the season. They have a better QB than Bama ’11, and a worse RB, and equal WR, if not better. They will find ways to shut down opponents and win games.
Ultimately, I think +1700ish is a worthwhile bet. I think they’re definitely a lock for SEC Championship, and they create their own destiny from there.
Thoughts? Opinions? Leave them in the comment section below or tweet @mtsabert.