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Week 12 circled in red and black for Dawgs

11/15/2011

There's no need to spend a lot of time studying the college football schedule this week, especially if you're looking for those games that make you rub your hands and count down the minutes until the weekend.

In fact, good luck in finding very many at all.

But make no mistake. Week 12 most definitely matters in the SEC, and specifically to Georgia.

The Bulldogs can wrap up the Eastern Division championship by winning at home Saturday over Kentucky, which is saying something considering the climate in and around Athens back in September.

Even though Steve Spurrier has all but conceded the East title to Georgia, you can bet there will be more than a few television sets in the state of South Carolina tuned into the Georgia-Kentucky game on Saturday, too. The Gamecocks would win their second straight East crown if the Wildcats can upset the Bulldogs.

The tricky part is that South Carolina kicks off against The Citadel about 20 minutes prior to Georgia’s game.

Either way, something says the Head Ball Coach won’t have one of his graduate assistants watching the Georgia-Kentucky game from an office inside Williams-Brice Stadium and texting him scores.

Barring the biggest upset of the season in the SEC, this Saturday will be Georgia’s time under the sun.

The Bulldogs have won eight straight games since opening the season with back-to-back losses to Boise State and South Carolina. The talk of coach Mark Richt being on the hot seat has dissipated, and this is a football team playing with a purpose right now.

As sophomore linebacker Alec Ogletree said last week following Georgia’s 45-7 trampling of Auburn, “We’re definitely enjoying the ride.”

After two forgettable seasons in a row, including last season’s 6-7 finish that marked Georgia’s first losing season since 1996, the entire Bulldog Nation is finally enjoying the ride.

It’s a ride that’s been that much sweeter for the players and coaches because of everybody who jumped off the bandwagon back in September.

“After that South Carolina loss, people were throwing us out with the trash,” Georgia senior cornerback Brandon Boykin said.

But no more, not after eight straight wins, including the Bulldogs’ most complete performance of the season last week against Auburn.

Georgia hasn’t been to the SEC championship game since 2005, which was the last time the Bulldogs won an SEC title.

So rest assured that Week 12 is circled very heavily in red and black.

It’s been a long time coming for these Dawgs.