5 Reasons Georgia Will Win It All

Article courtesy of Sportingnews.com —

5 Reasons Georgia Will Win It All:

DT Geno Atkins, Jr. Few in the land can play defensive tackle like Atkins. Just don’t expect him to tell you about it. “He’s so quiet that you don’t think he’s focused or into this thing,” says Willie Martinez, Georgia’s defensive coordinator. “But you click on a film, or it’s game day, and he’s right there.” His stats scream superstar: 41 tackles (14 1/2 for loss), 37 hurries and 7 1/2 sacks in 2007.

RB Knowshon Moreno, So. The best tailback in the South, Moreno began his march to greatness with a 188-yard, three-touchdown effort in a victory over Florida last season. “He is the fuse to their offense,” Kentucky defensive coordinator Steve Brown says. He might also be a Heisman Trophy candidate — we’re betting Moreno has big games against Arizona State, LSU and the Gators during Georgia’s championship run.

QB Matthew Stafford, Jr. Stafford (6-3, 237) arrived from Texas with an imposing figure and a heck of a fastball. Over the past two seasons, says an SEC coach, “he has learned how to pitch.” Thanks to better touch on his throws and better decision making, Stafford went from seven touchdowns and 13 interceptions in 2006 to 19 and 10 last season. If those numbers improve further in 2008, watch out.

CB Asher Allen, Jr. For 25 games, Allen had one interception on his resume. Then he picked off Hawaii’s Colt Brennan twice in the Sugar Bowl, showing a flash of the playmaking ability he’ll use to help the Georgia defense this season. A longtime threat as a return man, Allen will cover receivers from South Carolina’s Kenny McKinley to Tennessee’s Lucas Taylor. A few more interceptions against those guys will lift the Dawgs toward a national title.

LB Rennie Curran, So. Curran was a bit player for the first two months of last season. “Then,” defensive coordinator Willie Martinez says, “the coaching staff got smarter and started playing him.” Curran started on the weak side in five of Georgia’s final six games. He collected nine tackles for loss and three sacks and earned a handful of freshman All-American honors. This year, look out — he won’t be scrambling to learn the defense.


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