Immediately after the Georgia win against Notre Dame, coach Kirby Smart had one word to describe the events that unfolded: Wow.

“That’s what college football’s all about, man,” he told CBS sideline reporter Jamie Erdahl. “I hate that somebody had to lose that game because I have a lot of respect for the way they played and the negative things they heard, and to come out and play really physical as a team, and so did we. We persevered. I’m proud for our university. I’m proud for all the people in this community that support us. A great team effort.”

Smart said Georgia has 37 players who play 25 or more snaps on defense and the difference was “perseverance” on defense.

“They played hard tonight,” he said.

Two years ago, the win at Notre Dame was remembered as a game-changed in the program under Smart. This one also won’t be forgotten anytime soon.

“It was a big win because we had to come from behind,” Smart said. “We’ve got a lot of things to fix to get better down the road, but I’m proud of the way our guys competed. … No butterflies now. I had butterflies about five minutes ago.”