LEXINGTON, Ky. — — among Kenny McIntosh and Jack Podlesny, pinnacle-ranked Georgia was given all of the vital factors it wished on a day in which style points weren’t viable.
McIntosh rushed for a profession-high-quality 143 yards, which include a crucial nine-backyard rating overdue inside the 0.33 region, and the Bulldogs withstood Kentucky’s fourth-area rally Saturday for a sixteen-6 win and its second consecutive unbeaten season in the Southeastern convention.
The Bulldogs (eleven-0, eight-0 SEC, No. 1 CFP) clinched the Japanese division title ultimate week and sought another best end in league play. They got here away as simply the 0.33 SEC crew for the reason that 1992 submitted consecutive eight-0 league marks, following Alabama (2008-09) and Florida (1995-96).
Georgia’s achievement wasn’t clean in bloodless, windy conditions, and it settled for 3 Podlesny area dreams before McIntosh’s TD supplied a needed cushion.
“With those climate situations, we’re going to play those sort of video games like this,” coach Kirby cleverly stated. “but I’m truely happy with when our men’s backs are in opposition to the wall, how they come out fighting with what they do.
“without a doubt, we should’ve played higher, in all likelihood in the purple place. They may have stopped some drives defensively; we gave them multiple conversions on consequences. I ought to give Kentucky a number of credit for bouncing lower back and being a without a doubt bodily football crew.”
Georgia’s threat to pad the lead ended on downs at Kentucky’s 1. The Wildcats made it exciting with a 99-backyard power that ended with Will Levis’ eight-backyard touchdown skip to Barion Brown. Levis’ two-factor conversion bypass failed, and the risk to make it a one-score sport died whilst Matt Ruffalo’s field aim hooked left after a low, rolling snap.
Kentucky (6-five, 3-five) then turned it over on downs and lost for the fifth time in seven video games.
McIntosh rushed a profession-excessive 19 instances with a 26-yarder for the Bulldogs, who outgained Kentucky 365-297 and 247-89 on the floor.
“It changed into actual massive,” McIntosh stated of his TD. “We had been riding the ball the complete subject, but we knew that we had to rate on that drive to come out sturdy and get the ball rolling at the floor. We had preached at some point of halftime that we had to go out there and begin more potent and be physical on the line of scrimmage.”
The senior lower back’s previous nice turned into ninety yards on 16 attempts in opposition to Florida’s closing month.
“Kenny ran the ball properly tonight,” cleverly introduced. “possibly could’ve had extra, but he needed to percentage with some different men.”
Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett finished thirteen of 19 for 116 yards with an interception.
Levis completed 20 of 31 for 206 yards with an interception for Kentucky, which dropped its thirteenth in a row toward Georgia.
The Wildcats had been picked to finish 2nd behind Georgia in the East and have been ranked as high as No. 7 inside the AP pinnacle 25 in overdue September before spiraling downward with painful division losses to South Carolina, No. Five Tennessee and ultimate week’s stunning 24-21 home loss to Vanderbilt that snapped the Commodores’ 26-game SEC dropping streak.
‘DAWG DAY AFTERNOON
Georgia’s 2nd-ranked scoring defense (eleven.6 factors in step with game coming in) remained stingy in conserving Kentucky to just 119 yards before halftime and scoreless thru three quarters. Kentucky’s 99-backyard TD force after making a goal-line stand spoiled the Bulldogs’ shutout bid, but they constrained the Wildcats to just three of eleven on third down and 1 of 3 on fourth.
It wasn’t quite, however, Georgia have to hold its perch atop the AP top 25 and college football Playoff scores.
Georgia: Denied their typical offensive explosiveness with the aid of Kentucky’s stiff protection, the Bulldogs needed to accept whatever they might get. The numbers ended up respectable, converting 6 of 12 third-down possibilities and edging the Wildcats in time of ownership (30:02-29:58). Their stingy defense pitched a shutout for 3 quarters, highlighted by means of Kelee Ringo’s stop-region interception of Levis, and held off Kentucky’s closing-ditch tries to make it close.
Kentucky: With nowhere to go however up after an all-around disastrous performance against Vanderbilt, the Wildcats did everything they had to do to slowing down Georgia and come up with more than one essential protective stop. They nevertheless faced a 16-point hollow, although Levis did his part along with his arm and feet to get them at the board towards a bullish ‘Dawgs defense.
“After a hard loss every week in the past, getting them encouraged to compete at a high level (became our priority),” train Mark Stoops stated. “It took a whole lot of digging and soul-searching and the competitive nature of our players to reinvest and dedicate and to put in that sort of attempt. We got here up brief, but the effort, the preparation changed into there.”