This time they saw American dynasty Georgia take a great group of Horned Frogs from TCU and turn them around. 65-7 Inside SoFi Stadium, turn them into something terrifying like prey. They saw Georgia reclaim its first national championship of the College Football Playoff era (and first overall in 10 years), becoming the fourth team to go 15-0, and go 29-1 over two seasons. April raided their roster for 15 players, including five defensemen, in the first round of the draft.
They saw the collective generosity, even if they didn’t see the competitive drama.
“I believe [Georgia fans] Get the message I’m going to say,” said seventh-year Georgia coach, former Georgia player and Georgia MVP Kirby Smart. “They can’t take it for granted. You can’t take opportunities like this for granted. And they came out full force. They better never get tired because we need them.
Two thousand miles from Athens, Ga., they saw things they never tired of. They saw the Bulldogs’ rough-and-tumble bunch sprinkle the field with both the elegant plays and sloppy stops needed to elevate their college football to the best it’s ever seen. After nine days a 42-41 to escape Ohio State In the Beach Bowl national semifinals, they saw a beautiful rush that prompted TCU coach Sonny Dykes to find “a lot of pride in their performance in the way they played.”
They actually saw something — reminiscent of others who decorated their repeat titles with romps, like Nebraska in the 1996 Fiesta Bowl (62-24) or Alabama in the 2013 Bowl Championship Series title game (42-14). They saw reinforcement of the heightened reality that the best American football comes from the Southeast, a region of eight straight national championships from four different universities.
Starting Monday night, Georgia players ran across open fields of their own creation and 25-year-old quarterback Stetson streamed through the gap for a 21-yard touchdown run from Bennett IV. That opened the scoring when Ladd McConkey caught a 37-yard touchdown pass from Bennett that McConkey ran with no worries, and Brock Bowers made accurate catches and racked up seven catches for 152 yards, a masterful catch. Third quarter touchdown.
If you need Georgia to show it can get down the field in a hurry, it can do it with drives like four plays for 70 yards, five for 57 or four for 55. You can play it effectively if you need to. It can be done with 11 plays for 92 yards or 11 plays for 66 yards. If you wanted schemes to get people open, they had them, and if you wanted precision passes like Bennett’s 22-yard touchdown pass to a well-guarded Adonai Mitchell to make it 38-7 at halftime, they had them.
“[They] Executed some of our misalignments and continued to score on them,” TCU linebacker Dee Winters said. “We beat ourselves up, overthinked, tried to run to the ball and things of that nature.”
In the defense of that security, people often suffer from personality disorders in the presence of greatness. Georgia racked up 589 yards with a nice balance of 254 (on the ground) and 335 (in the air), and Bennett was floating in the quarterback-rating clouds long before landing at 226.9, which Smart called “awesome” and “probably his best game. His career,” and Bennett He went 18 for 25 passing for 304 yards and four touchdowns, rushed for 39 and two more scores, and earned his second consecutive Offensive MVP in national title games.
“And,” Smart said, “when you have a quarterback who can make defenses and check things out and know what the defense is doing and still beat you with his legs, you have a top quarterback.”
This is a high-profile quarterback from Georgia who committed to Georgia in 2017, transferred from Georgia to Mississippi Junior College in 2018, and then transferred back to Georgia in 2019, all while being overlooked by his own coaches. All these years later, he became a quarterback with two titles who was on the sideline in his final college quarter with quiet nerve endings.When he called time to give Bennett a screen call, Bennett said, “The huddle, I said to all the guys, ‘What are we doing? We Why don’t you play?’” Then he understood the reason and got emotional.
All the while, though, something artistic happened elsewhere in sports statistics, even if it was the artistic kind that caused injuries. A TCU team (13-2) that has only once gained fewer than 377 yards in a game has suddenly gained 188 in its dizzying season. A darling of the finalist who rushed for a dreamy 263 yards. Defeated Michigan in the Fiesta Bowl semifinals Suddenly rushed to 36. 32 beautiful first downs went to Georgia, nine bitter ones went to TCU. TCU’s best player, Wide receiver Quentin Johnston, caught a pass for three yards. Saw a pioneering early excuse TCU star quarterback Max Duggan Surrounding him is a group of tough defenders: Jalen Carter, Naseer Stackhouse and Smail Mondon.
“I mean, they were good up front,” Duggan said. “They had some good blitzes, some good pressure. I held onto the ball a little bit, couldn’t make the read, and caused problems for the offensive line myself. It was kind of on me. But . . .”
But: “They had some good plans.”
“As a kid, you know, you always dream of moments like this,” said Georgia defensive end Javon Bullard, who intercepted two passes.
All of this sent Smart, the former defensive back and defensive backs coach, into a conversation with his defensive scouting team, and it was as if he saw something bigger and faster and stronger than TCU had ever seen. The former Georgia defensive lineman, who once coordinated the defense of another dynasty, Alabama, went 81-15 during Smart’s seven-season tenure — and the red-and-black is raining across football country now. His latest Georgia team will find “consistency of performance [that] Hard to find,” Smart said, and he appreciates it. Those who see Georgia, especially those in Georgia red and black, know that they have rarely seen a state in all the years of art.
“It seems like the last three to four months,” Bennett said, “we’ve been looking to see if somebody can beat us, and we’ve run out of games.”
Then he concluded: “No one can.”