It's a huge win for Clemson and the loss really puts Georgia in a tough spot in terms of being in the national championship discussion. Here are five quick takeaways for the Dawgs from tonight's game.
The outcome of this game might have been different if Todd Gurley had been 100% healthy. He suffered a thigh injury in the first half and missed a good portion of the 2nd and 3rd quarters. When he was in the game, Clemson had no way of stopping him. He finished with 154 yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries. Imagine what those numbers might have been if Gurley had been able to carry the ball 20 or 25 times.
2. Aaron Murray lost the quarterback battle.
This game featured two of the best quarterbacks in the country in Aaron Murray and Tajh Boyd. Unfortunately for Georgia, Boyd was the better of the two players. He was very effective in the running game and had some beautiful passes against the UGA secondary, finishing with five touchdowns. Murray had an excellent second half, but struggled in the first half, particularly when he lost a fumble deep in his own territory.
3. The offensive line has major concerns.
The offensive line was supposed to be one of Georgia's biggest advantages leading into this game. Instead, Clemson was able to get penetration into the backfield and constantly put pressure on Aaron Murray. The line also had multiple problems with holding penalties. If Clemson was able to have so much success against the line, it's scary to think what Jadeveon Clowney and the South Carolina defensive line might be able to do next week. This is something that needs to be fixed. Quickly.
4. Josh Harvey-Clemons owes the UGA secondary an apology.
The Georgia secondary was a huge question going into the opener. The concerns turned out to be accurate as Clemson's receivers had great success moving the ball down the field and finding holes in the secondary. One Georgia player who could have helped prevent this was unable to because he made a stupid decision during the offseason. Josh Harvey-Clemons would have likely been on the field as the starting safety in this game but he was suspended for violating the team's drug policy. Hopefully Josh enjoyed getting high because he might have cost his team a win.
5. Scheduling games like this doesn't make sense.
What would Georgia have gained from beating Clemson? It would have been a great win on the road, but it's not like the Dawgs need non-conference wins on the resume to help their strength of schedule. Instead, Georgia is now 0-1 and likely has to go undefeated in the SEC to have any chance to reach the BCS Championship. They also now go in to next week's game against South Carolina with both running backs banged up and multiple guys on the defense nursing injuries. I know the fans don't like it, but scheduling teams like Sam Houston St. is much smarter than opening the season against teams like Clemson.
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