Kirby Smart more comfortable when ‘hay’s in the barn’

As a player and coach, Kirby Smart has been a participant in a fair number of big games. When asked earlier this week if he felt jitters as a player and what that feeling transitioned to as a coach, Smart said he doesn’t recall much about his playing days, but as a coach he’s feels less stress as the game nears.

“I can’t remember much about being a player,” said Smart as No. 4 Georgia continued preparation for its meeting Saturday with No. 1 Alabama for the SEC championship. “I was excited, I guess nervous; I don’t know, I’m nervous about everything. I’m competitive, want to do well. Work hard at it. Certainly once you prepare, there’s only so much you can do.

“I get the most comfortable the closer the game gets because I realize there’s not a lot you can do, but I’m more intense leading up to because I want to get all the hay in the barn. When the hay’s in the barn, there’s not a lot I can do. Let the players go play. Show confidence in the players.”

One player who might feel a little more at home at Mercedes-Benz Stadium this time around is quarterback Jake Fromm.

“I know what is going on,” said Fromm, who is 23-3 as a starter at Georgia and has thrown for 2,615 yards and 24 touchdowns this season. “I know the trip to Atlanta and what the environment is going to be like. Playing in big games is fun and what you dream of. I am ready to go out and go get it.”