Alabama may be the current defending national champion heading into this fall, but Georgia was the team predicted to win the SEC in 2021 by a panel of SEC publishers under the SI-affiliated FanNation program.
Yes, Georgia is coming off an 8-2 season in 2020, which included losses to Alabama and Florida. The Dawgs lost in Tuscaloosa after leading at halftime 24-20 and the Crimson Tide outscored Georgia by 21 points in a scoreless second half for the Dawgs offense.
The loss on the road was followed by a 44-28 loss in Jacksonville, Fla., to arch-rival Florida where the Gators jumped in front with a 24-point offensive explosion in the second quarter that helped them cruise to victory despite scoring just six points in the second half.
SI FanNation predicted that Georgia would win the East and defeat Alabama in Atlanta for the SEC title. It would be the Dawgs' first SEC Championship since 2017, when the Dawgs beat Auburn, 28-7.
Predicted Order of Finish
5. South Carolina
2. Texas A&M
3. Ole Miss
7. Mississippi State
SEC champion: Georgia
The 2021 schedule, apart from the season opener against Clemson, is rather favorable for the Bulldogs. The SEC East appears down headed into 2021, and Georgia's cross-over schedule sees a rebuilding Auburn football team and an Arkansas team that's predicted to finish sixth by the SEC publishers at SI.com.
While the main takeaway is that the publishers on the network think 2021 is the year that Georgia gets over the "Bama hurdle," head coach Kirby Smart is 0-3 against Alabama and has led at halftime in all three games. It's expected that it's going to be the Crimson Tide that Georgia will be facing in the SEC Championship Game in December, and for Georgia to be the pick here, only confirms the anticipation and hype surrounding the upcoming season for the Bulldogs.
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