Georgia hopes to improve tackling during final stretch

UGA saw its dreams of an unbeaten season run into the ground in Auburn over the weekend. The Tigers gashed the Bulldogs for 237 rushing yards in a 40-17 win.

Georgia’s defense has been its great strength all year, but coach Kirby Smart has been less impressed than the average spectator.

“I’ve been really concerned about our tackling all year,” he said Monday. “I haven’t been happy with it anytime. You measure tackling by how many one-on-one situations you get in and how many of those you win. And typically, our ratio has been the same all year. People measure things differently. There’s two guys standing there to tackle, and one of them makes it, that’s very different from a one-on-one situation.”

“We lost a lot of one-on-one situations throughout the year. When you go to tackle a back like (Kentucky’s Benny) Snell or (Kentucky’s Sihiem) King, the group of backs they’ve got, some good backs; we’ve got to improve in that area. It’s been that way all year long. Good thing is, we get to practice against some pretty good backs in our practices. We get to thud them, we get to tackle them. But we’ve got to do a better job for sure.”

Kentucky, a powerful running team similar to UGA, will provide an instant test to a recovering defense on Saturday. Smart warned that UK will be extra motivated and prove more than a worthy challenge.