Rapid Reaction: Georgia wins season opener against Vanderbilt
There’s nothing better than having an offense that looks like it’s in midseason form on the last night of August. That was the case for No. 3-ranked Georgia on Saturday, as the Bulldogs looked on form in pounding Vanderbilt 30-6 in Nashville.
Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm was nearly perfect early, leading the Bulldogs on three touchdown drives on their first three possessions. All three drives were 75 yards or longer, and Vanderbilt had no answer for everything that new offensive coordinator James Coley threw at them.
There’s no doubt Georgia has a great offensive line and a stable full of backs. They were on full display early, much to the delight of thousands of Georgia fans in the stands. D’Andre Swift rushed for 147 yards on 16 carries to lead the strong Georgia run game.
In the first drive, their first four runs were all for 9 yards or more. They capped the drive with a 3-yard touchdown pass from Fromm to Demetris Robertson.
On the second drive, James Cook scored on an 18-yard run to make it 14-0. The third drive ended with 8:01 left in the second quarter on Brian Herrien’s 1-yard TD run. Three drives, three touchdowns.
From there, the scoring slowed but piling up yardage didn’t. Georgia topped 300 yards in rushing and added three field goals from Rodrigo Blankenship. In addition to Swift’s big night, Herrien ran for 65 yards on just 12 carries and the TD. Fromm was 15-of-23 for 156 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions.
Georgia’s defense had a great night, too, keeping Vanderbilt out of the end zone. They did so thanks to a much improved pass rush. Vanderbilt went with Riley Neal at quarterback in a last-minute decision but he was harassed all night long. That was a welcome sign for Georgia fans considering that the Bulldogs finished dead last in sacks in the SEC a year ago.
The Bulldogs cleared the first SEC hurdle in Week 1. It was the first time since 1994 that Georgia opened the season with a conference road game.