The answer depends on which Georgia fan you ask. From what I have seen and people I have talked to, the opinion seems to be split right down the middle. Boise State is the annoying little brother around college football that the majority of the nation hates, while South Carolina is the perennial preseason National Champions according to their fans.
The question is which is actually more important?
Let’s start with Boise State, a team that has ended up near the top of the country several years in a row. They always play one or two tough games that they can “get up” for and then cakewalk through the rest of their schedule. I’ll start off by saying that it’s not entirely their fault they play such a weak schedule, and they have tried to make it tougher.
The Broncos are coming into another season where no one thinks they will beat the top BCS school on their schedule, the Georgia Bulldogs. The game is virtually a home game for the Bulldogs and the top-five Broncos just don’t have a chance according to most people.
The Broncos have an outstanding coaching staff that gets the absolute most from their players. They have Kellen Moore(pictured right) at quarterback who has rarely appeared rattled at any time during his career, and is a senior who is looking for one more miraculous run before graduating.
Regardless of what many think, the Broncos know how to win games and should not be taken lightly. They beat the Oregon Ducks two years in a row in 2008 and 2009 and followed that up by beating Virginia Tech last year in a virtual home game for the Hokies. The Broncos can very much win this game.
I don’t think it will happen though. At some point, the pride that rebuilt this great Bulldogs program has to fought for and there may not be another game that can have such a negative impact on our pride than this one.
The last, and only, time we played Boise State was in 2005. We won the game 48-13 and it wasn’t even that close. We were bigger, faster, stronger, and just purely better. Sounds the same this year, right?
The problem is the high level of coaching that the Broncos have and Moore is better than Jared Zabransky.
The Bulldogs are built this year with new and much improved leadership from guys like Aaron Murray and Christian Robinson. I just can’t see us losing to the Broncos, but it is possible.
Now, what about the South Carolina game? It has been dubbed by many as the SEC East championship game. The winner will definitely control its own destiny in the East being that it is the second weekend of the season. By default this should be the more important game, right?
Mark Richt has said that the goal for him every season is to win the SEC, and then everything else will take care of itself as far as the National Championship is concerned. He would be right, as the last SEC champion to not win the NC was the Georgia Bulldogs of 2005, and that team was probably the best in the country.
Marcus Lattimore(pictured left), as an 18-year-old freshman, embarrassed the Bulldogs last season. The line would give him a hole and he was guaranteed to break one tackle. He rushed 37 times for 182 yards and two touchdowns as the Gamecocks defeated us 17-6.
The Bulldogs could get nothing going offensively last year and Lattimore made sure that we didn’t get much time to work out any kinks.
Our defensive line is going to be a lot bigger this year with John Jenkins(pictured right) and Kwame Geathers switching out at the Nose Guard position, and both weigh in at over 340 pounds. That alone will make it a little harder for Lattimore to get rolling like he did last year.
The game is also in Athens, a place where we last lost to South Carolina in 2007. It is of vital importance that we come out of this game 1-0 in the conference, and we need to do it with some impressiveness. A win would still be a win though, and I would take anything.
So I think we will in the South Carolina game? Hard to say, but I think if we do we have a very good chance to put up some a big time record this season. This is particularly true if we win the Boise State game.
Florida and Tennesse are down, but they are still Florida and Tennessee. Most fans almost chalk up the Florida game as a loss, and I can’t blame them, and some are thinking that the Tennessee game in Knoxville may be our toughest game of the season. I try to be more optimistic, but I don’t take any game for granted anymore. Both teams can beat us, but I also feel confident that we can beat them.
If we beat Boise State and South Carolina, there is no doubt in my mind we win at least 10 games and the SEC East. If we lose to Boise State and beat South Carolina, I think we win the SEC East. If we beat Boise State and lose to South Carolina, we keep our pride but will need a lot of luck to win the SEC East.
So, which game do I think is more important? It’s really hard to say. Boise State is important for not only our pride but for the SEC, even if we are considered a middle-of-the-pack SEC team right now. South Carolina is a game that could decide the SEC East and could give us a very good chance at the SEC Championship, the ultimate prize in the best conference in the country.
I really have no idea, but I just hope that we win both and can get ourselves back to the top of the conference.
So, which do you think is more important for the Bulldogs?