Auburn football opponent preview: Georgia Bulldogs

Auburn football luring former Georgia linebacker commit Joseph Phillips was Hugh Freeze "sending a message" to Kirby Smart says Auburn Daily's Lance Dawe (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Auburn football luring former Georgia linebacker commit Joseph Phillips was Hugh Freeze "sending a message" to Kirby Smart says Auburn Daily's Lance Dawe (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /

This one is gonna SUCK to write, and it may suck to read for Auburn football fans.

This isn’t one of those games I’m writing about and trying to find an angle where the Tigers will have an edge. It’s one where I’m trying to find hope against an unstoppable building dynasty.

Today, we continue our preview of the Auburn football schedule with game number 5 on the calendar: the Georgia Bulldogs.

I’ve heard it through the grapevine that this team may or may not be one of the best staying powers that we’ve witnessed since the turn of the century. But we have no proof. It never happened.

ANYWAYS…. Let’s get this over with. Georgia is coming into the 2023 season with the number one 2024 recruiting class and is the two time defending College Football Playoff Champions. This team hasn’t lost more than 3 games since 2016, when they finished a measly 8-5 in Kirby Smart’s first year.

They have now THREE times in the last six years gone to the CFP National Championship Game: 2017, 2021, 2022. The three years they didn’t, they finished 11-3, 12-2, and 8-2. They’ve won the East now five of six years, with Florida having the outstanding Eastern Division title in 2020.

Lets talk about it.

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Coaching Staff

Kirby Smart, he of the unkept bowl cut and terrible golf swing, leads the Damn Bad Dawgs for his eighth year. His record as Georgia’s head man is astronomical for a first time head coach. He’s 81-15 with four seasons of at least 12 wins. Couple that with two national championships and currently the top recruiting class of 2024, and it’s clear that everyone’s favorite Mario character is building something historic in Athens.

Mike Bobo, the legend himself, is in his second stint as Georgia’s offensive coordinator. He certainly wasn’t the replacement Georgia fans wanted for beloved playcaller Todd Monken, but he’s a Georgia boy through and through. SEC fans were certainly glad to see this one chink in the armor, as Bobo’s sequencing has been known to come under fire in big games, say the 2021 Iron Bowl.

Glenn Schumann and Will Muschamp return as the co-defensive coordinators. While Schumann is a young up and comer, Coach Boom has been there, done that in the SEC. Head coaching stints at Florida and South Carolina as well as defensive coordinator stints with Auburn football (two of them actually), LSU, and Georgia make him one of the most seasoned coaches in the conference. This has been and always will be Georgia’s strength under Kirby Smart.

Georgia on offense

Mike Bobo was promoted to the position of offensive coordinator not long after Todd Monken left for the friendly confines of the Baltimore Ravens to coach Lamar Jackson. Bobo, who was the primary offensive coordinator under Mark Richt, has traditionally been a pro-style, under center offensive coordinator. He wants to win the line of scrimmage but also likes to air it out.

If you need any proof of that, just look at Aaron Murray. He STILL owns most of the career SEC passing records. Even Bo Nix attempted more passes than ever under Bobo. His game is a pro-style passing game rooted in intermediate and downfield concepts. While he has a quick game that is signature to most pro-style offenses, he is very adept at attacking the middle of the field and down the field.

With Auburn football, Bo Nix threw a lot of all curl concepts in the short game while throwing crossers and post patterns down the field. His QB’s passing charts will likely be the most diverse in the conference. We’ve heard that the base of the offense will continue to be more of a pro-style spread as was the case under Monken, but I want to see it more against actual competition to believe it.

Bobo’s work as a QB coach is notable. He turned Aaron Murray’s noodle arm and low mobility into the SEC’s all time passer. He turned Bo Nix from a liability to a serviceable game manager, who then went to Oregon and became a Heisman candidate. His Colorado State QBs all had big numbers. It’s just what he does.

Where Bobo has come under fire during his career has been an over-reliance on the passing game. There are many games that Georgia and Auburn would have won had they ran the ball a little more and controlled the clock. Even with teams like Auburn who have struggled up front in recent years, just a few more runs would have resulted in wins against teams like South Carolina and Alabama, and ultimately would have salvaged the 2021 season.

Georgia doesn’t have the Oregon or Clemson game for an immediate test this year. We’ll know early on just how good the offense will be after Stetson Bennett’s graduation. Brock Bowers should be the WR1, WR2, and WR3 all season. He’s the best tight end in college football and will likely be a top 10 draft pick next April. If the offense is good, we’re gonna be hearing three-peat until someone beats them.

Georgia on defense

This section won’t take long. Georgia has two good defensive coordinators and a wash, rinse, and repeat squad of talent. Every year they hit the field, the defense is unbelievable. If you score 30 on this team, you’ve already won half the battle.

With the start Georgia has to their schedule (UT-Martin, Ball State, South Carolina, UAB), Auburn football will be coming into the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry against a team I’d put big money on not having allowed more than 21 points in a single game. And that MIGHT happen once. MIGHT.

If Auburn’s new-look RPO-heavy offense can create some mismatches, they’ll be able to score. The new offensive line should help versus years past, but we’ll need big games from Peyton Thorne and Co. if we want any chance of putting up points.


Georgia is elite. That top recruiting class will only widen the gap. As long as Kirby doesn’t get in trouble, he’s gonna sit in Athens until he dies. Georgia will likely be a double digit win team four out of five tries until then.

I’m not saying they’re gonna win every national championship until then. I’m not even saying they’ll win every other national championship. But they aren’t going anywhere.

As always, War Eagle everybody.

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