Posted: 2:14 pm Saturday, November 11th, 2017
By Jay Black
WSB Sports Director Jay Black blogs live from Jordan-Hare Stadium. Check back often for news and notes from the UGA Radio Booth.
7:07 — FINAL SCORE: Auburn 40, Georgia 17
7:01 — TOUCHDOWN GEORGIA: Riley Ridley catches a 14 yard pass from Fromm. It’s 40-17 with 2:19 left.
6:44 — Touchdown Auburn: Johnson a 55 yard catch from Stidham on a screen. It’s 40-10 Auburn with 6:13 left.
6:38 — Fromm started this game 3-for-3 for 56 yards on the first drive. He’s 5-for-19 for 77 yards since.
6:32 — Field goal Auburn: Carlson hits a 37 yarder. His fourth of the game. Auburn is up 33-10 with 10:06 left.
6:21 — END OF THIRD QUARTER: Auburn 30, Georgia 10 — So many unforced errors and missed chances. Georgia fans have complained about special teams problems for years and years. This is turning into a meltdown, capped off by Mecole Hardman (who had been terrific with his returns) fumbling on the first punt of the third quarter.
But just as big of a concern is UGA’s miserable rushing performance. Georgia has been constantly rushing for 200 yards a game, but today they are stuck at 23. Captain Obvious tells me you cant win doing that.
Georgia’s defense has hung in there, while being stuck in several bad spots. UGA has 8 TFLs and Auburn is only 2-for-10 on third downs, but the Tigers have hit on every opportunity.
UGA has scored 21 points in the fourth quarter here before (2013, before the prayer) but right now that seems a huge hill to climb.
6:19 — Kerryon Johnson is the first person to run for 100 yards against UGA this season.
6:18 — Georgia once again can do nothing with great field position. 4th 3 and out of the game. Auburn ball after punt at its 3.
6:09 — FIELD GOAL GEORGIA: Blankenship hits a 47 yarder. Auburn leads 30-10 with 5:23 left in third quarter.
6:01 — This is the most points Georgia has allowed since losing to UT 34-31 last year.
6:00 — Touchdown Auburn: 32 yard screen from Stidham to Ryan Davis. It’s 30-7 Auburn with 8:12 left in third quarter.
5:57 — Georgia has no answer when it desperately needed one. Dawgs punt and its returned to midfield and Sony Michel is hit with personal foul. AU Ball at UGA 35.
5:49 –Georgia’s special teams mistakes have led to two TDs by Auburn and a missed field goal. Throw in the missed post play with Wims and I think that’s a lot of points.
5:46 — Touchdown Auburn: Stidham with a 7 yard TD run. It’s 23-7 Tigers with 11:57 left in the third quarter.
5:44 — Mecole Hardman fumbles a punt at the Georgia 23. Auburn ball.
5:17 — HALFTIME: Auburn 16, Georgia 7 — Instant analysis: I could throw out a bunch of stats (and will) about the first half of this game, but this is pretty much the ones you need to know.
Rushing yards: Auburn 76, Georgia 19
Rushing yards in second quarter: Auburn 20, Georgia -5
Penalties: Georgia 5-55 yards: Auburn 2-15 yards.
I hope you continue reading, but that’s pretty much what you need to know. Georgia can not win averaging 2.6 yards per carry and that doesn’t count the sacks (if you do, it’s a 0.9 yard average).
“We’ve got to move people,” said Kirby Smart when asked by UGA sideline reporter what they must do to improve the rushing game. The Dawgs longest carry is seven yards (Mecole Hardman and Sony Michel). I never played football, but even I know that’s not going to cut it.
UGA keeps getting stuck in third and long and Auburn pass rushing is laying into Jake Fromm. He’s been sacked three times, a season high. Two of those came on third downs. Fromm has completed a couple of miracle passes to Javon Wims. He’s 4-for-8 for 86 yards. He should have had another completion, but Riley Ridley dropped a sure TD pass, that wasn’t the best throw, but I know he wishes he had it.
Georgia just keeps missing opportunities. Mecole Hardman has had two great returns but Georgia didn’t get anything from it. Then the special teams unit jumps over the punt shield, which is a penalty, to keep an Auburn drive alive. Stidham hits Slayton for a 43 yard score for Auburn’s only TD.
Speaking of which, Kirby Smart on why he didn’t take an endzone shot right at the end of the half. “Probably should have thrown it. But we thought they would be in a prevent. We just wanted to get a dadgum field goal out of it.”
Georgia’s defense is hanging in there. The Tigers have 201 total yards and could have more than 16 points. But UGA has gotten to Stidham a few times, but only have one sack.
Kerryon Johnson is advertised with 76 yards on 15 carries.
Georgia’s defense is playing good enough to win this game, but right now the offense and the discipline are not.
5:16 – Georgia wastes another chance. Blankenship misses a 42 yard FG.
5:13 — Georgia’s defense does what is necessary to force its second 3 and out of the game. Good return by Hardman to AU 26. 22 seconds.
5:09 — UGA has allowed 3 sacks. Most this season.
5:06 — Hardmann was wide open on the flea flicker, but Fromm never had a chance. Third sack for Auburn.
5:02 — FIRST DOWNS: Auburn 13, Georgia 4
5:02 — Story of the game, Georgia gets zero points out of its best kick return of the year and Riley Ridley running wide open. Auburn keeps the ball after a flag and capitalizes with a TD.
5:01 –Touchdown Auburn: Slayton a 43 yard catch from Stidham. Tigers lead 16-7. This is Georgia’s largest deficit of the year.
4:56 — These drives are going quick here. Auburn goes 3 and out. Punt Auburn keeps the ball after UGA is flagged for jumping over the punt shield. 5 penalties 55 yards in this game for Georgia.
4:53 — Dawgs fail on 3rd down and one for another 3 and out. But UGA bumps into the punt returner. 15 yard penalty so AU ball its 30.
4:48 — UGA’s defense forces its first 3 and out. Walker with the sack. UGA ball after punt on its 34.
4:45 — Georgia is averaging 0.9 yards on the ground, sacks included. UGA is averaging 2.8 yards per carry sacks not included.
4:42 — Dawgs pay the price for missing the TD pass. Fromm is sacked again to end the drive. 3 and out. Punt coming after an AU time out.
4:40 — Riley Ridley can’t haul in a wide open TD pass. Not the best throw but Ridley got all his fingers on it.
4:39 — Georgia first drive: 70 yards. Since: 10 yards.
4:38 — This is the first time Georgia has trailed since the 3:35 left in the fourth quarter against ND. That was 29 quarters of football.
4:37 — Field goal Auburn: Carlson hits a 30 yarder, his third of the game. Auburn leads 9-7 with 12:03 left in half.
4:33 — Kirby Smart takes a timeout because UGA had 10 players on the field on third down and 10.
4:27 — Dawgs waste the good field position after the return. UGA goes 3 and out. Nizialek’s punt is downed at the AU 9.
4:22 — END OF FIRST QUARTER: Georgia 7, Auburn 6 — So far we are getting exactly what we expected. Two evenly balanced teams that can move the ball, but come up with big stops. Total yards through one period. Auburn leads 82-80. UGA’s first TD drive was terrific with Jake Fromm going 3-for-3. But UGA didn’t throw it at all on their second drive, with their only pass play ending up as a sack.
Auburn is running the ball very well, getting seven yards a carry for 56 yards. Kerryon Johnson is as advertised, with 47 yards on six carries. But UGA has played the pass well and has been in Stidham’s face all game. The sophomore is 5-for-9 for 26 yards. UGA hasn’t been able to sack the slippery QB though, which has helped the Tigers save field goals on both their drives.
Georgia needs to run the ball better from here, which I suspect it will. But so far, this is what we expected.
4:21 — That’s Mecole Hardman’s longest return of the season. 47 yards.
4:18 — The good news, Georgia’s pass rush is all over Stidham. He’s been hit at least four times. But no sacks yet.
4:17 — Field goal Auburn: Carlson hits a 37 yarder. UGA still leads 7-6 with 1:20 left in first quarter.
4:07 — UGA’s second drive is not as successful. Georgia with four straight runs and Jeff Holland gets his 9th sack of the season to end it. AU Ball at its 39 after a punt.
4:05 — Nick Chubb passes Bo Jackson for fourth on the SEC’s all-time rushing list.
4:02 — Carlson is 4-for-7 from 50+ yards this season.
4:01 — Field goal Auburn: Carlson hits a 54 yard FG. It’s 7-3 Georgia with 8:19 left in first quarter.
3:54 — What a well executed and prepared first drive for UGA. Fromm 3-for-3 for 56 yards. Including 28 and 26 yard passes. That was well thought out.
3:51 –TOUCHDOWN GEORGIA: Nick Chubb one yard TD run out of the Wild Dawg. UGA leads 7-0 with 11:21 left in the first quarter.
3:42 p.m. — UGA calls heads and losses the toss. Auburn defers, so Georgia ball.