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SEC 2009 // Dawg Days

This is simply an overview of each of the Georgia Bulldogs' games this season; predictions come Thursday.

9.5 :: at Oklahoma State
This might be one of the toughest openers for any team in the SEC, with the possible exception of Alabama (Virginia Tech). You might remember Oklahoma State as the "other" team in the Big XII South, if you can truly call a team that amassed 6,340 yards (487.7 per game) the "other" team. About that offense: QB Zac Robinson (204-of-316, 3,064 yards, 25 TDs, 10 INTs, 166.84 rating), RB Kendall Hunter (241 rushes, 1,555 yards, 16 TDs) and three of the top five WRs return.

9.12 :: vs. South Carolina
The plot for this game has really become almost predictable now. Georgia fans predict how badly their beloved Dawgs are going to annihilate the Gamecocks and the hated Steve Spurrier. South Carolina plays Georgia in tight game down to the very end. Roughly 80 percent of the time, Georgia wins anyway. About 20 percent of the time, the Gamecocks emerge victorious. Again, only once in the last five years and twice in the last nine has this game been decided by more than a touchdown.

9.19 :: at Arkansas
The closest the Dawgs come to a "breather" before mid-October might be a game against an SEC team likely bound for a bowl. These teams have played fewer than a dozen times, so there aren't any hidden animosities running underneath the surface.

9.26 :: vs. Arizona State
The Sun Devils disappointed last year, at least in part because their offensive line was almost as bad as South Carolina's. That's likely to improve with four starters coming back. But QB Rudy Carpenter is gone, and there's little reason to believe Arizona State can do much better in Athens this year than they did in Tempe last year, when the Dawgs won 27-10.

10.3 :: vs. LSU
Last year's 52-38 drilling of the Bayou Bengals, when combined with Florida's 51-21 victory two weeks earlier, were the first true signs that LSU was in deep, deep trouble. The tilt between Georgia and LSU could be a leading indicator this year, as well, with the Bengals likely to come into the game 4-0 (at Washington, vs. Vanderbilt, vs. Louisiana-Lafayette, at Mississippi State.)

10.10 :: at Tennessee
The Vols managed just 209 yards, including one rushing on 15 carries, in last year's game. Meanwhile, the Dawgs rang up 458 yards ... and won 26-14. This is a tricky game for Georgia. They don't have quite as much billboard material as some of the other foes facing the Vols this year, and the trip to Knoxville caps off a brutal first half of the season. This one could be close.

10.17 :: at Vanderbilt
Last year's 10-point victory should be enough to get the Dawgs past losing to the Dores in 2006 and almost losing in 2007. It could be a trap game, but I seriously doubt it.

10.31 :: vs. Florida (Jacksonville, Fla.)
The World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party Cocktail Party Cocktail Party has been injected with fresh venom after Georgia's celebration in 2007 and Urban Meyer's prudent use of timeouts last year. If the Gators are as good as we're giving them credit for being, they should roll into this game undefeated. (The only significant obstacle before the Georgia game is a trip to Baton Rouge.) And unless South Carolina or Florida State surprises, this could be the last best chance for someone to knock them off before the SEC Championship Game. Not that the Dawgs would take any special joy from depriving Florida of the first undefeated season in school history. Not at all.

11.7 :: vs. Tennessee Tech
This could be the first game of the year in which Georgia fans can truly go to sleep on Friday night without any doubt of the outcome. And it could be the last.

11.14 :: vs. Auburn
The Dawgs have won their last three games against the Tigers by a combined 99-48 score, though last year's four-point margin against an eventual 5-7 team that got Tommy Tuberville fired was less than inspired. Coincidentally, Auburn will have also just eaten a delicious cupcake (Furman). But the Tigers could be fighting for a bowl, or at least the right to go to a bowl not held in Shreveport.

11.21 :: vs. Kentucky
If Kentucky is going to continue its recent trend of beating the Dawgs once a decade, Georgia need not worry until 2016.

11.28 :: at Georgia Tech
The seven-game winning streak against the Jackets is over, and Georgia might just come into this game as an underdog for the first time in a while. Emphasis on might. Tech gets two weeks to prepare. But the Dawgs will have revenge on their mind.


MONDAY: Georgia Looks for Direction
LATER TODAY: The Secret Life of Evil Richt
WEDNESDAY: The Depth Chart; Does Mark Richt Do Best When Expectations Are Low?
THURSDAY: Predictions
FRIDAY: Feedback and Conclusions