ATLANTA - Shaking off a blowout loss to Auburn just three weeks ago, Jake Fromm threw two touchdown passes and No. 6 Georgia made its bid for a spot in the College Football Playoff with a 28-7 victory over the No. 4 Tigers in the Southeastern Conference championship game Saturday.
Auburn (10-3) was the hottest team in the country, rolling into Atlanta after wins over Georgia and then-No. 1 Alabama in its last three games. But the Tigers were stymied by two crucial turnovers, a blocked field goal and a Georgia team eager to make up for its embarrassing 40-17 defeat on the Plains .
Nick Chubb, Sony Michel and freshman D'Andre Swift provided a much more effective running game for Georgia than the first meeting, which opened up things for the freshman quarterback. Fromm completed 16 of 22 passes for 183 yards, including a 2-yard touchdown to Isaac Nauta in the second quarter and a 6-yarder to Terry Godwin with just over 13 minutes remaining that essentially sealed Georgia's victory.
The Bulldogs claimed their first SEC title since 2005 and capped an impressive rise in Kirby Smart's second season as coach. Georgia went 8-5 a year ago, but Nick Saban's former defensive coordinator insisted he was establishing a culture that would return the team to national prominence.
What's next for the Bulldogs? UGA will likely head to either the Rose Bowl or Sugar Bowl to play in a semifinal game, looking to take another step toward the team's first national title since 1980.
Here's a minute-by-minute look at the game from Channel 2 Sports Director Zach Klein:
Final: The Georgia Bulldogs win the SEC Championship game, beating Auburn 28 to 7.
10:34 4th quarter
Another Georgia touchdown! The Dawgs have now scored 28 unanswered points and lead 28-7.
Final 4 bound... pic.twitter.com/SvVO5NjJyj— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 3, 2017
12:12 4th quarter
Georgia forces a quick 3-and-out and gets the ball back on their own 25.
Since opening drive when they scored a TD.. Auburn:— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
13:06 4th quarter
Fromm makes the Tigers pay for the turnover. Touchdown Georgia! Godwin snags the TD and the 2-point conversion.
4-plays after fumble..Terry Godwin with the 7-yard TD.. then the 2-point conversion..— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
21-straight points for UGA
21-7.. 13:06 left in game
13:58 4th quarter
Another HUGE play by the Georgia defense and the Dawgs are in business after the turnover.
MVP.. so far..— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
13 tackles.. 10 solo.. fumble recovery.. 1 sack.. 2 tackles for loss pic.twitter.com/bLQ3In6fph
Start of 4th quarter
The Dawgs lead 13-7 and this raucous UGA crowd can start to feel it.
1:26 3rd quarter
Blankenship's second FG of the day gives Georgia a 13-7 lead.
4:48 3rd quarter
After punts on each side, Georgia has the ball starting at their own 20.
Since going 75 yards on their opening drive for a TD..— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
Auburn has been shutout by UGA and totaled 140-yards over their last 6-drives pic.twitter.com/1h4e7NrAzM
8:13 3rd quarter
Georgia blocks the Auburn FG attempt. Dawgs take over om their own 28.
Blocked!! pic.twitter.com/RViy9B9axz— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
Start of 3rd quarter
Georgia receives the opening kickoff.
The Dawgs take a 10-7 lead into the half.
Halftime..— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
UGA gets ball 1st to start 2nd half
4:59 2nd quarter
UGA takes a 10-7 lead on a Blankenship FG.
10:14 2nd quarter
Georgia turns the turnover into points! Fromm to Nauta on a 2-yard touchdown.
We have a ballgame..— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
Fromm to Nauta..
13:04 2nd quarter
HUGE momentum swing for the Dawgs. Sack-fumble and Georgia recovers. Fromm takes over on their own 16.
Fumble.. @DavinBellamy17 forces it,.. UGA recovers on 16 yard line— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
End of 1st quarter
Not a great opening quarter for the Dawgs. Auburn leads 7-0 and is driving.
6:16 1st quarter
Georgia picks up a few first downs but eventually stalls on its first possession of the game and is forced to punt. Auburn takes over on their own 25.
Going to be a long day if UGA keeps finding themselves in 3rd and long #UGA2ATL— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
9:54 1st quarter
Auburn strikes first. Stidham to Craig-Myers for a 6-yard TD on 3rd and goal. 7-0 Auburn.
Stidham can flat out ball (4-4, 28-yds, TD)... dude has zip and accurate..Impressive opening drive for Auburn..— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
12:30 1st quarter
Auburn is driving. Georgia had the chance to get off the field 3-and-out but a pass interference call extended the drive.
Flag thrown by ref 25-yards behind the play..— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) December 2, 2017
15:00 1st quarter
Auburn will receive the opening kickoff.
There are massive crowds inside and outside Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Both Auburn and Georgia seem to be well represented.
Georgia WR Javon Wims loosening up in ways 99.9% of people cannot.
Some of the first Georgia Bulldogs have taken the field. They seem loose.
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