Despite being at Georgia for five years, the 6-foot-3, 209-pound quarterback only had one season to leave his mark at Georgia.

Hutson Mason’s one full regular season as starting quarterback for the Georgia Bulldogs has come to a close. How will he be remembered?

The beginning of Mason’s impact on Georgia got off on the right foot last season when he filled in for an injured Aaron Murray. In two starts (vs. Georgia Tech and the Capital One Bowl) Mason threw for a combined 619 yards and three touchdowns, including a 20-point comeback win against the Yellow Jackets on the road.

But the 2014 season — Mason’s time to shine — wasn’t as glorious.

Mason could have been the X-factor for the Bulldogs. Everyone knew what Todd Gurley could bring to the table, but if Mason panned out as a reliable quarterback … watch out for the UGA offense.

Early on Mason wasn’t much of a factor, however. In his first five games he never eclipsed 200 passing yards and his average arm strength appeared to be a liability in games against supposedly inferior opponents like Tennessee and Vanderbilt. He wasn’t filling up the stat sheets.

Unfortunately for Mason, even when he did well he still couldn’t quiet the critics.

In Georgia’s second game of the season against South Carolina, Mason’s stat line is very respectable — 16-for-22, 191 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions. With a 1st-and-goal at South Carolina’s four-yard line, questionable play calling and a terrible intentional grounding mistake by Mason put the ‘Dawgs out of a position to score a touchdown.

UGA missed the subsequent 28-yard field goal and South Carolina ran the clock out to win 38-35.

Mason turned a corner, however in the following weeks. Georgia went on a tear winning five in a row and Mason was very efficient throwing the football. He didn’t make many mistakes which led to a 8:3 touchdown to interception ratio during that stretch.

Despite a surprising loss to Florida, Mason proved his value to the offense when the ‘Dawgs were forced out of their comfort zone down multiple touchdowns. He threw a career-high 41 times but still managed a 63.4 completion percentage, 319 yards and one touchdown.

Head coach Mark Richt said Mason was still a first-year starter and it was merely a learning process for the fifth-year senior.

“I think Hutson’s deal this year was knowing he only had one shot at it and wanting to be perfect, wanting to not make a mistake, wanting to make the most of it,” Richt said. “I think it kept him from being free to cut the ball loose like he had done all along in all the practices we watched.”

“And then when he finally said, you know what, I’m going to get back to dropping back, hitching up and ripping the ball, he’s done extremely well,” he added.

Mason’s time at Georgia was a bit unfair. Not only did he have just one season to prove his worth, but he was tasked with following a Georgia legend in Aaron Murray. Mason was never going to be Murray, no matter how well he played and the expectations of similar passing success were too unrealistic for someone like Mason.

He had the opportunity leave a lasting impression on Georgia fans in his final home game. Ironically enough, Mason was forced to lead another game-winning drive down the field against Georgia Tech and 12 plays and 69 yards later, it appeared that he had done just that when he hit Malcolm Mitchell for a touchdown with just 18 seconds remaining to go up three points over the Yellow Jackets.

Mason’s legacy, albeit brief and largely unimpactful, was going to have a happy ending. He was going to be the hero.

And then in a matter of seconds, it was taken away from Mason. A squib kick by UGA led to a game-tying FG by Georgia Tech and the Yellow Jackets prevailed in overtime when Mason’s interception sealed the defeat for the ‘Dawgs.

Mason’s shortcomings weren’t always his fault as questionable coaching decisions plagued several outcomes this season, however, the deck seemed stacked against him from the beginning. It would have taken a heroic season for Mason to be remembered among the lexicon of Georgia quarterbacks, but unfortunately for him, that didn’t happen.

Instead, he’ll probably be viewed as a bridge from one quarterback to another.

Mason did as well as he could considering the situation, but I’m not sure that it was good enough.