Georgia needed big theatrics to be able to get back. It turned into kicker Jack Podlesny as he built his career up to 53 yards to set Georgia’s 24-21 win over Cincinnati Bircats.
The Bulldog grabbed the ball with 1:28 left and headed for the Cincinnati 36-yard streak thanks to a series of catches from Kenny McIntosh. After two straight parts, Podlesney flew the trout there and drilled the biggest kick of his career: 03 seconds left. Converted 21-19 deficit into 22-21 lead.
DAWGS is on top 🔥
Jack Podolsky hits his career FG 53-yard race to crown the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl’s return to Georgia! pic.twitter.com/eMPZjKbW3f
SportsCenter January 1, 2021
Cincinnati’s last match of the game ended safely and sacked by Aziz Ogoulari, who had 3.0 of Georgia’s 8.0 bags in the game.
It was the first loss of the season for Berkats, while Georgia finished 8-2 and certainly in the top ten.
An interesting decision by Kirby Smart
Kirby Smart made another controversial kick decision in the final quarter of the match at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
With the Bulldogs facing fourth and three at the 43-yard streak, Smart took a time out. Then instead of going at it, Smart chose to return the ball to the Cincinnati attack.
The Bircats team, who fought off most of the second half offensively, did enough to force Georgia to use their deadlines. The Bulldogs discontinued but it was still a strange decision from Smart.
The decision by Smart reminded many of the SEC 2018 tournament game in Georgia, when Georgia performed a mock kick in fourth and 11th place with Justin Fields. The match was tied at 28 at the time. Crimson Tide went on to score and win the match, sending Alabama to the College Football Playoff.
However, Georgia’s crime did enough to save the decision as the Bulldogs managed to win.
GT Daniels is less than stellar but much too late
There was a lot of hype surrounding JT Daniels. I saw why this was the case because he had two 50 plus yards complete in-game. And he designed a late-scoring campaign to give Georgia a win when it mattered most.
But this was by far Daniels’ least impressive game as a Bulldog. He cast an expensive intercept in the final zone that kept the points off the board for Georgia. Then he got confused when Georgia was out of the red that Cincinnati had taken back, one of two steps for Daniels that day. These two turns were more than in the previous three matches he had started with Georgia.
There were also two instances of situational football where Daniels was unable to deliver the play. The first came fourth and first when Daniels couldn’t communicate with Keris Jackson. Daniels then missed a two-point transfer attempt in Georgia’s first score in the fourth quarter.
But in the final round of Georgia, Daniels completed five attempts of seven passes from 44 yards to put Georgia in range.
Consistently, he completed 26 of 38 pass attempts at 392 yards. He got a touchdown pass to Pickens in the game.
Three grabs, 71 yards and a drop.
The first quarter wasn’t bad for George Pickens. pic.twitter.com/YfkI4QjIRd
Georgia Bulldogs (@UGAAthletics) January 1, 2021
It wasn’t quite a bad game for Daniels. Not only were the most powerful efforts of the midfielder in transport. This was his fourth start to the Bulldogs after he lost more than a year to an ACL injury.
Half time sandwich
When the Georgia crime took its last meaningful first-half shot, it led 10-7. When the Bulldogs took their first shot in the second half, they were down 21-10.
Bircats swung the match by playing them at the end of the first half and the start of the second half. Cincinnati led the length of the field and scored just six seconds before the first half. Rider scrambled around and managed to find his narrow end Josh Weil for a landing that looked like it came straight from the back yard.
Desmond Ryder entered the chat. pic.twitter.com/CGIiJd3E1C
– Barstool Sports (barstoolsports) January 1, 2021
Bearcats grabbed the ball to open up the second half and wasted little time increasing the lead. Cincinnati Running Back Jerome Ford was able to make Lewis Cinema miss safety and race to the final zone. The 79-yard run was the longest in Georgia’s defense since the 2003 SEC Championship match.
Ex Alabama galloping back Jerome Ford with 79 yards off the landing opposite Georgia at Peach Bowl pic.twitter.com/g4y1sr80Le
Matt Zenitz (mzenitz) January 1, 2021
By two points, Cincinnati began attacking the Georgia and Daniels offensive line. The Bulldogs were unable to respond, with their first two drives reaching the Cincinnati 25 only to score a zero on both drives.
The offensive line is fighting
The two groups that Georgia were unable to enter the game were the secondary and the offensive line. You can find out based on how these two units are played in Peach Bowl.
Secondary had a tough time against Ridder, throwing 206 yards and two drops. The Bulldogs were starting Tyrique Stevenson in the corner due to DJ Daniel and Eric Stokes choosing to announce the NFL draft. Marc Webb wasn’t available either, which is why Latavious Brinni started.
The Bulldogs got a massive pass late in Stevenson to force Cincinnati to make the final bet.
The offensive line was probably worse. The Bulldogs had to adjust their line of attack due to the absence of Tree Hill and Ben Cleveland. The Bulldogs went with Xavier Truss in the left tackle, Jamaree Salyer in the left-hand guard, Warren Erickson in the middle, Justin Schafer in the right-hand guard and Warren Maclendon in the right tackle.
Average negative impulse rate in Georgia currently stands before contact. With no space for jogging, only two of the 8 rounds designed for them worked. The Dogs were injured in the back court in half of their attempts. I would have taken care of these stats if I were them …https://t.co/QSNTiXpKkV pic.twitter.com/UKykGsnWJm
– SEC StatCat (SEC_StatCat) January 1, 2021
The Bulldogs only ran 45 yards in the game, with only 28 of them having in the first half. With Georgia lagging behind, this allowed Cincinnati to pressure Daniels. Bearcats had 3.0 sack in the game.
It wasn’t the first time Georgia’s offensive line suffered this year, as the performance brings back memories of the Mississippi state match when Georgia ran just eight yards. Bulldogs also happened to be wearing black T-shirts that day.
Georgia has recruited very well in both of these positions. But that doesn’t seem to matter against the Bearcats, as Cincinnati has clearly outpaced Georgia in both regions.