Georgia Tech vs. Georgia matchup

• Where: Bobby Dodd Stadium

• TV/Radio: ABC; 750 AM, 790 AM, 106.7 FM

What it means to me

"I knew it was a rivalry when I was in middle school, but I didn't understand the intensity until my senior year in high school when I started getting recruited by both teams. I used to talk to people in college at different schools who talked about how big of a game this was. The fans from where I was from talked about how big this game was and how this was the biggest game in Georgia for each team."

-- Georgia Tech wide receiver Demaryius Thomas, who is from Montrose.

"I've known of the rivalry since I was little. I used to watch it on TV. But I wasn't really a big part of it until I got here. I don't know what it is about them. We don't get along."

-- Georgia defensive end Justin Houston, who is from Statesboro.

Apples and oranges

Georgia coach Mark Richt's salary ($3,096,576) plus the combined salaries of assistants ($2,029,816) totals $5,126,392

Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson's salary ($2,300,000) and the combined salaries of assistants ($1,680,000) totals $3,980,000

Matchup close-up

Georgia's linebackers vs. Georgia Tech's rushing game.

• Georgia Tech: Quarterback Josh Nesbitt, B-back Jonathan Dwyer and a cadre of A-backs have helped Tech become the second-best rushing team in the country, behind only Nevada (373.18 vs. 314.09 yards per game). Nesbitt and Allen were the primary engines at the beginning of the season but Dwyer has taken over the past four games with more than 500 yards.

• Georgia: Led by linebacker Rennie Curran, the Bulldogs' linebackers have steadily improved throughout the season, so much so that Georgia has quietly moved up to 32rd in the nation in total defense (327.36 yards per game.) They must stay disciplined, find the ball and keep Tech's linemen away from their legs if they hope to handle Dwyer and company.

The numbers game

• 3: When Tech beats Georgia once, it usually defeats them again. Three times in the past 25 years, Tech has snapped Georgia's winning streak and then won at least once more. It happened in 1998-2000, 1989-1990 and 1984-1985.

Distant replay

• What: The blowout

• When: Nov. 30, 2002

• What happened: Georgia posted its largest win in series history, 51-7.

• Quotable: "Two years ago, there was among Georgia fans a real fear that their team might never again get it right. Two years later, there's the real possibility that the Bulldogs could play for the national championship.

"How has the course of a program turned so quickly and completely?

"The easy answer is to credit Mark Richt, and this is one of those times when the easy answer seems correct. ‘There was a fresh start,' Jon Stinchcomb said, ‘a new coaching staff, a new motto.' Under Ray Goff and Jim Donnan, Georgia seemed destined to fail. Under Richt, the Bulldogs see no reason why they shouldn't win anything and everything."

-- As told by Mark Bradley, AJC

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