UGA Football

Georgia guarding against recent history over Auburn

Georgia running back Nick Chubb (27) takes a carry in last year’s game against Auburn.
Georgia running back Nick Chubb (27) takes a carry in last year’s game against Auburn. AP

This season, Georgia’s seniors finally recorded a win over Florida in four tries. The opposite has been true in regards to the program’s rivalry with Auburn.

Georgia’s senior class will look to go 4-0 against Auburn when the two teams line up at Jordan-Hare Stadium Saturday. The Bulldogs have won the past three games, with the last two being close. The Bulldogs blew the Tigers out 34-7 in 2014, defeated Auburn 20-13 win in 2015 and recorded a 13-7 upset in 2016.

With Georgia enjoying that kind of recent success against Auburn, head coach Kirby Smart made sure to reiterate this week that previous games don’t equate to future wins. That is something he wants his players to guard against.

“Our message has always been that the past doesn’t affect the present and that message is still true,” Smart said. “What would any game in the past against Auburn have anything to do with this game? I don’t know that it does because I don’t think their team is anything like it was the last three years and I don’t think our team is anything like it was. The past doesn’t affect the present. The present will affect the present. What we do in the present matters a lot.” 

But the fact Georgia’s seniors could go unbeaten against Auburn is something running back Nick Chubb said would be nice back at SEC Media Days.

As a freshman in 2014, Chubb had an excellent outing against the Tigers. In that game, Chubb rushed for 144 yards and two touchdowns. He didn’t play against Auburn in 2015 due to a knee injury and rushed for 101 yards against the Tigers in 2016.

“It would be great to kind of retire from Georgia beating Auburn four years in a row,” Chubb said in July. “It’s great to win every game.”

While looking back at recent wins over Auburn is frowned upon for motivation, defensive tackle John Atkins noted that the seniors can point to previous seasons as reasons to keep the focus entering the game.

In each of the past three years, Georgia has lost at least three games. With the Bulldogs sitting at 9-0 and No. 1 in the nation, that is something Atkins doesn’t want to lose.

“Right now, our freshmen are undefeated. They haven’t lost a game,” Atkins said. “We’ve all been through the 8-5 season (in 2016), and stuff like that. We talk them, and tell them it’s not over. We’ve still got to practice.”