Georgia’s motivation against Auburn comes from last year

caption arrowCaption
Kirby Paul Smart was born Dec. 23, 1975 in Montgomery, Alabama. Smart graduated from Bainbridge (Ga.) High School. His HS coach was his dad, Sonny Smart. Smart played football at Georgia from 1995-98 and graduated with an undergraduate business degree in 1998. He earned a master's degree from Florida State in 2003. Smart was a first-team All-SEC choice as a senior at Georgia in 1998. A safety, Smart intercepted 13 passes while playing for the Bulldogs. Smart intercepted six passes as a junior and five as

Although Auburn is out of the SEC picture for 2018, Georgia has no lack of motivation to prepare for the Tigers. Is there anyone out there that has forgotten last year, when Auburn throttled then-No. 2 Georgia 40-17 in the regular season only to have the Bulldogs do the thrashing in the SEC Championship game a few weeks later?

For running back Elijah Holyfield, the only motivation required is the knowledge that the next game is awaiting. When asked if the loss last year to Auburn was a motivational factor, Holyfield said, “We have enough motivation with what we have going this year. We have a chance to play for many more things down the road and we are just looking forward to playing the game Saturday against a good team, executing and playing our best.”

But Holyfield is well aware of recent history where Auburn is concerned.

“They definitely (humbled us) last year, so we try not to look over people, and Auburn’s a school where you can’t do that,” he said.

Offensive tackle Andrew Thomas said the Bulldogs will be tending to their business during practice this week, just like they do every week.

“Every week we have to come with the same approach,” Thomas said. “When you become lackadaisical, that’s when you can slip up as a team. We’re just working to get better because (to get) where we want to be, we have to win out. … It’s the same thing every week – it’s an SEC team, a great team. And that’s what we’re going to focus on.”

Defensive lineman Jonathan Ledbetter, who recorded five tackles and a sack in Georgia’s 13-7 victory over Auburn in 2016, said that he just likes playing against Auburn.

“You’ve got two good teams playing each other, competing and playing their hearts out,” he said. “It’s a physical game always and one of my favorite games of the season. I’m looking forward to it. I’m always looking forward to a challenge.”