A bit overplayed, but nonetheless awesome.
Well, a pleasant surprise is always nice when talking about Georgia football. Winning on the road in a hostile environment on a big stage should never be downplayed, especially when the "experts" trendy pick goes the opposite way of your favor. I was glad to see us respond and keep up the intensity, despite a few of the "Hey, we're Georgia" mistakes that constantly seem to plague us in big games (special teams touchdowns after we grab momentum, TOs in the redzone, poor tackling leads to large gain, etc. ad nauseum). Having a guy like Jarvis make plays in pivotal situations really helps keep the opponent from getting things rolling, in spite of small lapses in the gameplan.
Jarvis wasn't the only guy out there making plays, though...
I saw really good games from John Jenkins, Amarlo Herrera, Abry Jones, and Malcolm Mitchell. While John's name didn't get thrown around much, his ability to take on multiple blockers and blow up the pocket were really the key to stopping any running threat from Franklin or any of the running backs. The result there was good gap discipline and a nice cleanup game from Abry. He doesn't get much praise, but Abry is a very solid defender.
Amarlo is becoming a hell of a player. If you have any doubts, there were several wow plays from him in the passing game. He had a PBU and a tackle for a loss on a swing pass that were very nice. I wasn't going to say Mitchell would be an excellent corner before I saw it on the field, but he's the real deal. Think of how we'd be hurting right now were he in Tuscaloosa.
Offensively there were some bright spots. Marlon - can't deny what a great game he had, as well as TK. Murray was okay overall, though did get a lot hotter in the second half. If we're going to be a big-time football team, he has to be more consistent (in his defense, the right side of the line struggled for a large portion of the game). I'd have to say that I was very impressed with Andrews and Gates along the o-line. I can't remember a snap that Gates didn't dominate his guy and, if I had to guess, he probably graded out the highest on the line.
All that being said, player of the game has to be Richard Samuel. It's hard not to give it to Jarvis, as he pretty much won the game for us, but Richie's play on the fake punt completely changed the game. I feel bad for the guy because he hasn't been able to find a home on the team, but you can't say enough about his value and the fact he's a DGD.
Overall, we played well considering what wasn't on the field in light of the suspensions. Speaking of that, I caught a little slip from Richt that "we'd be getting a few guys back" this week. I'd estimate that Commings, Rambo, and Vasser will see the field Sattidy night, but I'm hearing that the 'Trees won't be back until after Vandy.
I don't think there's any concern over the health of Geathers and Jenkins, as they both came back in after their respective injuries, but I'd anticipate seeing a lot of the younger guys against FAU, if it's not a ULM/Arky type slugfest.
I think there's still a lot to hope for this season if Murray can level the keel. The defense sure looks up to the billing, even though we're missing almost a 1/3 of the starters.