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Georgia is the Top Program in College Football

It's easy to be hyperbolic in this era of hot takes, but this is simple a truth. Georgia is the premier program in college football.

Saturday in Atlanta saw Georgia steamroll LSU, on their way to an SEC Championship. Kirby Smart and the Bulldogs added another trophy to their rapidly expanding collection, but that wasn’t the only title earned this weekend.

In a week that saw two of the top four teams lose in their conference championship games, Georgia treated their conference title opponent like just another annoyance, ahead of the College Football Playoff. The team from Athens, defending national champs, now-SEC Champs, isn’t just the best team in the country; it’s the best program.

CBS Sports’ Rick Neuheisel said it best, “Georgia is the new Alabama.”

Yes, they’re still a few national titles away from matching what the Crimson Tide and Nick Saban have done, but it’s all about trajectory. Georgia isn’t a flash in the pan. Since Kirby Smart arrived in 2016, Georgia has been to two College Football Playoffs, soon to be three. They’ve been to two CFP National Championship Games, winning one. They’ve played in five SEC Championships, winning two, and losing two to the eventual-national champions. They haven’t lost a regular season game since November of 2020, becoming just the third SEC team ever to go 8-0 in conference play in consecutive seasons.

Smart and his staff are arguably the best talent evaluators and developers in college football. Just this past spring, Georgia set the record for most picks in a single NFL Draft when 15 players from their national championship team were selected.

You’d think that much lost talent would lead to a regression, right? Wrong. Georgia is now 13-0 for the first time in the history of the program. 2022’s team was able to do what 2021’s couldn’t; win the SEC Championship. They have a chance to become the second team in FBS history to go 15-0 (2019 LSU).

While Georgia has been on their run, other’s have slowed. Alabama has lost two games in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 2013-2014. Clemson has five regular season losses in the past two years. Ohio State has been passed by rivals Michigan.

Kirby Smart has built a monster in Athens, and he’s done it the way his mentor Nick Saban built his; elite recruiting, suffocating defense, and explosive, yet controlled offense.

The recruiting is obviously what makes everything else work. After beating Florida in 2021, Smart famously remarked “There’s not a coach out there [that can] out-coach great recruiting.”

It’s a simple truth. No matter how good your offensive game plan is, it’s not better than Jordan Davis, Roquan Smith, Nakobe Dean, or Jalen Carter.

Defensively, where Smart butters his bread, the program’s core belief is that they should be able to hold any team to 13 points, even with the proliferation of offense at all levels of football.

Smart has built Georgia into the monster many thought it could be. Just look at the current roster. Georgia is 13-0, on their way to the College Football Playoff, and they only have one offensive starter, Stetson Bennett, that will run out of eligibility following this season.

Before that, they’ll try to defend their College Football Playoff crown, and become the first team since 2011-12 Alabama to do so. 

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