Sept. 1, 2012
Postgame Notes - #6 Georgia (1-0) vs. Buffalo (0-1) (September 1, 2012)
Season Openers: With today's 45-23 win, Georgia's all-time record in season openers is 90-26-3, including a 10- 0 mark when starting a season at home under Mark Richt. Under Richt, the Bulldogs now own a 45-8 mark versus teams from outside the Southeastern Conference, including 31-1 at home.
Making An Impression: True freshman TB Todd Gurley tied a school, SEC and NCAA record with a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the first quarter. This was the first time the Bulldogs have had a 100-yard return since Brandon Boykin accomplished the feat versus Kentucky in 2010. Boykin had three of them in his career. Gurley's return was the 43rd 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in SEC history. Gurley also had a 27-yard return late in the second quarter to finish with two returns for 127 yards. Gurley scored a 10-yard touchdown on his second career carry to give Georgia a 7-0 edge. He added a 55-yard TD scamper in the fourth quarter. Gurley finished with eight carries for 100 yards to become the first true freshman to have at least 100 yards and 3 TDs in a season opener since Danny Ware in 2004 against Ga. Southern. Ware had 18 carries for 135 yards and 3 TDs.
Going Deep: Junior QB Aaron Murray hit senior FLK Tavarres King for a 63-yard touchdown reception to give the Bulldogs' a 24-6 edge in the second quarter. This was Murray's 60th touchdown pass of his career and King's 13th career touchdown reception. King finished with 6 catches for 117 yards, which is the fourth 100-yard game of his career. Murray finished 15-of-26 for 258 yards and 3 touchdowns. Another of Murray's completions was a 38-yard touchdown to junior Rantavious Wooten. It was Wooten's fifth career TD reception.
Blocked Punt: Sophomore FLK Chris Conley blocked a punt early in the second quarter to give the Bulldogs the ball at the Buffalo 23. It led to a 35-yard field goal. This was the first blocked punt for the Bulldogs since Orson Charles had one at Vanderbilt in 2011 and was the 20th blocked punt since Mark Richt took over as head coach in 2001. Conley had two catches for 20 yards today.
Also On Special Teams: True freshman PK Marshall Morgan connected on a 35-yard field goal to give the Bulldogs a 17-6 edge. Morgan was 1-for-2 on field goals and hit all six extra point attempts. Redshirt sophomore P Adam Erickson punted for the first time in his career. The Athens native had 3 punts for a 30.0 average as he is serving as the "pooch" punter. True freshman Collin Barber also lifted a 57-yard punt on his first and only attempt. It marked the first time since 1985 that Georgia opened a season with a punter and placekicker without any collegiate experience. That year, punter Cris Carpenter and placekicker Steve Crumley were redshirt freshman.
Leading Tackles: Junior OLB Jarvis Jones tallied 8 tackles, including 1.5 sacks and 2.5 tackles for loss. Sophomore CB Damian Swann had a career-high 8 tackles to go along with one punt return for 30 yards.
Starters: Georgia had five first-time starters versus the Bulls. On offense, true freshman RT John Theus, sophomore C David Andrews and redshirt freshman FB Merritt Hall got the start while redshirt sophomore FS Connor Norman and redshirt freshman CB Devin Bowman lined up on defense. True freshman Marshall Morgan kicked off to start the game and kicked the extra points.
New Faces: RT John Theus, TB Keith Marshall, TB Todd Gurley, PK Marshall Morgan, OLB Jordan Jenkins, FB Quayvon Hicks, TE Ty Flournoy-Smith, CB Sheldon Dawson, SS Josh Harvey-Clemons, OLB James DeLoach, P Collin Barber, OLB Josh Dawson and C Preston Mobley were the 13 true freshmen to play for the Bulldogs. This marks the most true freshmen to play in the season opener in the Richt era. The previous high was 11 in 2008.
Injuries: Redshirt sophomore TB Ken Malcome suffered an injured left hand in the third quarter and did not return. Theus left the game in the fourth quarter with a left knee injury. Senior SE Marlon Brown (left hamstring strain) and sophomore CB/SE Malcolm Mitchell (left ankle sprain) did not dress out.
Up Next: No. 6 Georgia (1-0) travels to Columbia, Mo., to face Missouri in the Tigers' first SEC game on Saturday, Sept 8. The matchup will be featured on ESPN2 at 7:45 p.m. ET.