KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The bye week came at a great time for third-ranked Georgia, which heads to Tennessee on Saturday after a week off following a 23-17 victory over No. 10 Notre Dame on Sept. 21. The Fighting Irish were Georgia's first true test this season, and while the Volunteers have dropped three of their first four games, head coach Kirby Smart believes the Bulldogs will remain on track in part because of the leadership provided by junior quarterback Jake Fromm.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, ESPN. LINE: Georgia -25.5
"I can see him going and talking and communicating to young wideouts, to help guys get lined up, challenging guys to play with more energy and effort and toughness," Smart told reporters Monday when discussing Fromm, who has completed 76 percent of his passes this season and is 27-5 in his career as a starter. While the Bulldogs have established themselves as the team to beat in the SEC East, the Volunteers are trying to find their way after losing to the likes of Georgia State and BYU in the season's opening month. Tennessee also was idle last week following a 34-3 loss to Florida in its conference opener, and head coach Jeremy Pruitt told reporters Monday he does not plan to name a starting quarterback for Saturday. "We're not going to give Georgia a scouting report of what we're going to do this week," Pruitt said. "We're going to rep the guys we feel like give us the best opportunity to have success."
ABOUT GEORGIA (4-0, 1-0 SEC)
The Bulldogs average 42.8 points per game, rank 15th in the nation in total offense per game at 508.8 yards, and lead the SEC while ranking 12th nationally in rushing yards per game (253). Junior running back D'Andre Swift rushed a career-high 18 times for 98 yards and a touchdown against Notre Dame, and on the season is averaging 7.9 yards per carry. The Bulldogs are second in the SEC and sixth in the country in points allowed per game (10.0), as junior defensive back DJ Daniel made five tackles and broke up the final Notre Dame pass at the Georgia 7-yard line with 48 seconds remaining.
ABOUT TENNESSEE (1-3, 0-1)
Junior quarterback Jarrett Guarantano has thrown as many interceptions (four) as touchdowns against FBS opponents, and was benched for part of the second half against Florida in favor of freshman Brian Maurer (4-for-13 for 44 yards in two games). Senior Jauan Jennings leads the Volunteers with 19 receptions for 281 yards and four touchdowns. The Volunteers are second in the SEC in passing defense (190 yards allowed per game) and have intercepted six passes, two by sophomore linebacker Jeremy Banks.
1. Georgia graduate transfer TE Eli Wolf caught nine passes for 86 yards and a touchdown for Tennessee from 2016-18.
2. Tennessee junior K Brent Cimaglia has made 11 consecutive field goals, and his career 77.1 percent success rate is second in school history (Alex Walls, 77.9 percent).
3. The all-time series is tied 23-23-2, but Georgia has won the past two matchups by a combined score of 79-12.
PREDICTION: Georgia 38, Tennessee 10