The Georgia Bulldogs rank 3 in the preseason AP poll

The Georgia Bulldogs rank 3 in the preseason AP poll

Coming off the Georgia Bulldogs first national championship season since the 1980, Georgia will look to do more of the same. With Stetson Bennett coming back for another year to lead the offense. Georgia will have a lot of new faces replacing the historic defense from last year, with five defensive players going in the first round of the NFL draft alone. 

Veterans like Nolan Smith, Jalen Carter, Robert Beal, and Tykee Smith will lead the defense this year. Meanwhile, the offense has a lot of players coming back and should be up there as one of the best in college football. 

With the tight end position being stacked this year ,with Brock Bowers coming back from a huge freshman season being the face of the position, while Darnell Washington and Arik Gilbert giving more depth to the tight end position with the loads of talent they have, and while maybe overlooked, Oscar Delp starting his collegiate career this year played really well in the spring game. 

With having the best tight end core in the country, they’ll have a lot of attention from the defense, which means the wide receiver core will also play an important role in spreading the field out and giving the tight ends more of a chance to get open. With Adonai Mitchell and Ladd McConkey leading the receiving core with guys like Dominick Blaylock and Kearis Jackson are people not to mess with also. 

The 2021 SEC Coach of the Year, Kirby Smart, coming off his first national championship as a head coach heading into his 7th year as the Georgia Bulldogs head coach, so far in his tenure as head coach, he has a record of 66-15 and 6-2 in bowl games (3-1 in the College Football Playoff). He has had an unbelievable run so far leading the Georgia Bulldogs. Bringing loads of new talent from recruitment, and this year was the exact same having the number three class in recruiting according to 247 sports. The burden of beating Nick Saban is finally over, but a new challenge has approached. Can they keep the success going? Time and time again we see teams such as Oregon, Florida State, Michigan State, Washington, and LSU have their run at the championship, but have yet to bring that type of success again. Georgia has made the College Football Playoff 2 times, 2017 (runner-up) and 2021 (national champion). Can Kirby Smart consistently make deep playoff runs? With the loads of talent coach Smart and the Bulldogs bring each year there is no question that Georgia could stay in contention year in and year out. 

Keeping Tood Monken as the offensive coordinator for another year is a major plus for the Bulldogs and the offense, and with the returning starters on the offensive side of the ball, with Monken’s play calling, the offense should be more prolific than last year. 

Todd Monken’s play calling has improved from an offensive standpoint since he joined in 2020. He has been able to make the best out of a difficult situation in 2020 and in 2021 with the quarterback battle that was between transfer JT Daniels (now at West Virginia) and Stetson Bennett. There are not enough words to describe what a transformation Monken has done to the offense.

As for the defensive side of the ball, with Dan Lanning leaving the defensive coordinator role after the season to take the head coaching job at Oregon, former Georgia Bulldog Will Muschamp and Glenn Schumann will be co-defensive coordinators this year leading the defense. Two great defensive minds to go with a defensive coach in Kirby Smart. Their task is to get the new guys coming into the system to get adjusted to the style of play.

 There are a lot of new faces on this Georgia defense, and all of them are extremely talented and don’t have a lot of experience, most of the returning take on bigger responsibilities for the Georgia Bulldog defense. 

While guys like Nolan Smith and Jalen Carter will be the leaders of this group, you have several new guys coming coming in such as Mykel Williams, Malaki Starks, Marvin Jones Jr. coming into the defense with loads of talent from the 2022 recruiting class, but little experience at the collegiate level but looking to make headway in the defense as soon as possible. There is so much talent at every single position offensively and defensively to make competitive battles for the starting jobs at each position. All of the defensive guys this year are hungry to prove that they are still one of the best defenses in the entire country. 

With the first game of the season against #11 Oregon will face a tough opponent right away. Georgia opening up as a  -17.5 point favorite over Oregon and by Caesars Sportsbook and a 91.5% chance to win according to ESPN’s Football Power Index, but looking on through the season you have some tough opponents on the road such as at South Carolina (9/17) and #20 Kentucky (11/19) and not to mention Florida in Jacksonville (10/29) and Tennessee at home (11/5). 

What should fans’ expectations be for the team? Well with a lot of new faces the fans should be optimistic about what the season faces. Early prediction have them facing #2 Ohio State in the College Football Playoff Semi-final game. With teams such as Alabama, Ohio State, Utah, Clemson, and others being competitive too. It should be an interesting year for the 2022 Georgia Bulldogs.