Oct. 8, 2011
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - Mark Richt won his 100th game at the helm of the Georgia football program with a 20-12 win over the Tennessee Volunteers on Saturday evening in front of a capacity crowd of 102,455 at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville, Tenn. Richt became the third coach in Georgia history to reach the century mark.
"This is a tough place to play and an even tougher place to win at," Richt said. "Our defense came out in the second half and did what they could to give us great field position and then the offense came out and did what they had to do. Tennessee came to play and this was a great, tough football game."
The Bulldogs, currently riding a four-game win streak, are now 4-2 on the season and 3-1 in the Southeastern Conference. Tennessee drops to 3-2 on the year and 0-2 in SEC play.
The offense put up 366 total yards behind sophomore quarterback Aaron Murray, who finished with 227 yards on 15-for-25 passing. Isaiah Crowell led the Bulldogs on the ground with 58 yards and two touchdowns. Freshman wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell finished with 126 yards through the air, including a career-best 71-yard grab. Mike Gilliard led the Bulldogs defensively with 12 tackles and a sack.
Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray was 18-of-33 for 251 yards. Backup quarterback Matt Simms saw action late in the game, scoring the Vols lone touchdown. Mychal Rivera led the Vols with five catches for 85 yards.
Georgia struck first, taking a 3-0 lead on its opening possession. During the drive, the Bulldogs converted twice on fourth down, helping set up a 35-yard field goal by Blair Walsh.
The Volunteers added a field goal of their own to tie the game at three with just under seven minutes to play in the first half. Using a fourth-and-eight conversion, the Vols knocked a 28-yarder through the uprights.
The Bulldogs responded on their next possession after Murray connected with Mitchell for a 43-yard reception. Three plays later, Walsh booted his second field goal of the night, this one from 23 yards out, that gave Georgia a 6-3 lead.
As time expired in the first half, Tennessee kicked a 43-yard field goal that tied the game at six.
A bad snap forced Tennessee to punt from its own seven-yard line on the opening drive of the third quarter, giving the Bulldogs a short field. Murray found Orson Charles on the drive for a 10-yard gain that gave Georgia a first-and-10 at the Tennessee 13-yard line. Crowell capped off the eight-play, 4:32 drive with a one-yard touchdown run that put the Bulldogs on top 13-6.
Crowell rushed for his second touchdown of the game, scoring from 17 yards out, putting the Bulldogs up 20-6 with 4:51 remaining in the third quarter. Mitchell set up the touchdown run with a 71-reception from Murray that made it first-and-10 at the Tennessee 22-yard line.
Tennessee made it a 20-12 game with 2:45 left in the fourth quarter. The Vols converted on fourth down for the third time in the game, setting up a one-yard touchdown run by Simms.
Georgia continues its road swing next weekend when it travels to Nashville, Tenn., to take on Vanderbilt. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m., and the game will be televised on Fox Sports South.