First, Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray announced he would return to the Bulldogs for his senior season.
Then, Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd announced he would return to the Tigers for his senior season.
Those twin decisions have set up a good ol' fashioned quarterback showdown Aug. 31 at the real Death Valley, a game already shaping up to be the marquee matchup to open Week 1 of the 2013 season. Yeah, yeah, there are nearly eight months to go, but it is never too early to crank up the hype machine.
Even for the players.
Shortly after Boyd made his announcement Wednesday, Boyd sent out the following tweet:
— Tajh Boyd (@TajhB10) January 9, 2013
Murray replied quickly:
— Aaron Murray (@aaronmurray11) January 9, 2013
OK, not exactly at the level of Jordan Lynch smack talk, but you can see both young gents are ready to get this game on, knowing full well what is on the line. Not only does this have the potential to be a top-10 matchup, featuring two candidates that no doubt will get preseason Heisman love.
Not only are there SEC/ACC implications, much bigger than the 2012 season opener in the Georgia Dome between Clemson and Auburn, and even the Chick-Fil-A Bowl between Clemson and LSU.
There are national championship implications, a phrase that has not been used in connection with Clemson in what? Decades?
Boyd understands this. "We have the opportunity to create something special here," Boyd said Wednesday.
Both quarterbacks have an opportunity to add to their already impressive resumes. Look at where they stand in the record books:
Boyd set the ACC season record for touchdown passes with 36 and for touchdown responsibility with 46. Only Johnny Manziel of Texas A&M had more nationally with 47.
Boyd is 21-6 as the starter. In 2013, he will attempt to become the first quarterback in school history to lead Clemson to 10 or more wins in three seasons.
Overall, Boyd holds 39 Clemson records.
Murray is 28-13 in three years as a starter.
He is the first Georgia quarterback to throw for more than 3,000 yards in three consecutive seasons.
In 2013, he has a chance to set multiple SEC records. Murray needs 1,438 yards to become the league's career passing yards leader; 200 completions to become the completions leader; and 384 attempts to lead in that category.
Well, it's on in 233 days.