Senior safety Christopher Smith remembers that 27-point demolition from his freshman season, when Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow passed for 349 yards and four touchdowns.
“Last time we played them in 2019, they gave us a beatdown and left a bitter taste in our mouth,” Smith said Monday. “I was here for that. It definitely gives me a little extra motivation for this game, as well.
“... It definitely means a lot to me,” Smith said of the chance to finally win the SEC. “It’s definitely one of our team goals to be able to win the SEC. I’ve played in this game three times and haven’t been able to win, so hopefully fourth time’s the charm if we go put in the work and execute the game plan as best as possible, to go out there and get a win.”
This will mark Georgia’s fifth trip to the SEC Championship game since Kirby Smart arrived in 2016, but Smart is still hunting for his second win. Georgia defeated Auburn 28-7 in 2017, lost to Alabama 35-28 in 2018, lost to LSU 37-10 in 2019 and lost to Alabama again in 2021, 41-24.
The Bulldogs have a chance to make more history this season, and winning the SEC would check a huge box off the list for this group.
“It’s about that next step and having an opportunity to put a number on the wall that stays there forever,” Smart said. “It’s an SEC championship. You don’t belittle those. Those are hard to come by. They’re what you do what you do for. There’s such a respect, especially in this part of the country, for the Southeastern Conference, that winning a Southeastern Conference championship is extremely impressive for the quality of football and the number of NFL players that come out of our conference. I think our players take a lot of pride in that.”
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