Georgia’s Playoff Hopes Still Alive After South Carolina Loss

Georgia Football Jake Fromm (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Georgia Football Jake Fromm (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images) /

Over the weekend, the Georgia Bulldogs lost a home game to the Gamecocks of South Carolina in a double-overtime thriller, depending on what side you cheer for. After the loss, the Bulldogs tumbled down the rankings to 10 in the nation, striking a massive blow to their playoff hopes.

Coming into Saturday’s game with South Carolina, the Georgia Bulldogs were ranked 3rd in the country with a strong home win against Notre Dame a few weeks before this Saturday. Many difficult tasks laid in front of Georgia, Auburn, Florida, possible SEC Championship Game, but Georgia needed to take care of the Gamecocks in Athens before any of that. Unfortunately, Georgia did not take care of business against South Carolina.

After a sloppy, low-scoring game from both sides, Georgia fought back to score a late touchdown that would send the game to overtime. Jake Fromm, having easily the worst game of his college career, threw an interception to open overtime. South Carolina would miss the game-winning field goal to extend the game to its second overtime. South Carolina would score this time, converting a field goal to open the second overtime. Rodrigo Blankenship, the automatic kicker for Georgia, would miss his second field goal of the day to end the game.

The loss to South Carolina is a devastating blow to the Georgia Bulldogs and their playoff hopes. There are games on the schedule Georgia could lose, Florida, Auburn, Notre Dame, Alabama, that could have looked like a “good loss” to the playoff committee. The loss to South Carolina, an average team, when Georgia looked pretty average themselves, is a loss that could haunt Georgia as the season progresses.

The one big thing to take away from this loss, for Georgia, is there playoff aspirations are still alive. With the loss, Georgia will have no room for any error, but that’s kinda what they were going through already. College Football holds such little margin for error, for the top teams, that not much has changed for Georgia after the loss. If Georgia can finish the season without another loss, which would include wins over Florida, Auburn, and the SEC title, Georgia will be in the CFP at the end of the season. So, the loss hurts, but it’s not a season-ending loss for the Bulldogs.

Losing to South Carolina will leave a stain on the season for Georgia, but not a stain that can’t shake. Perhaps, you positively spin this, this loss will lead Georgia to be more focused down the stretch of the season when they need to be playing their best football. That’s the optimistic way to look at it, away I’m sure Kirby Smart isn’t looking at this… Regardless of what happened last Saturday, Georgia’s goal is still alive and well.