Paul Finebaum on how Georgia surpassed Alabama as college football's premier program

Paul Finebaum on how Georgia surpassed Alabama as college football’s premier program

Alabama caught some criticism following what many characterized as a sloppy 20-19 against Texas two weeks ago in Austin. It was a rough showing for the Crimson Tide, who committed the most penalties in the Nick Saban era in the last-minute victory. That shaky performance combined with Georgia’s impressive showing to start the year led to the Bulldogs jumping over the Crimson Tide in the Week 3 edition of the AP Top 25 Poll.

ESPN analyst Paul Finebaum explained why he thinks Georgia has replaced Alabama as College Football’s premier program.

“Just watch the NFL on Sunday and there are a lot of Alabama players that are no longer on that campus,” Finebaum said on GetUp. “They still have the two that matter (Will Anderson and Bryce Young), but so many have gone and they haven’t replaced some of the elite wide receivers. They haven’t replaced some of the elite defensive players. I think overall the biggest deficiency for Alabama today is the fact that Kirby Smart is at Georgia. He was Nick Saban’s most valuable assistant and he’s not been able to replace that. And I think a lot of the shift has moved to Georgia. He’s very comfortable, Kirby’s very comfortable with his staff. He has Will Muschamp there now.

And Nick Saban has good assistants; he has Bill O’Brien but he has never been able to replace Kirby Smart, and I think the shift has already happened. I’m not saying the dynasty’s over, I’m not saying any of that, Nick Saban’s is about to be 71 years old. But Georgia looks like a better program right now and they’re backing it up on the field.”

Smart has accrued a 69-15 record as Georgia head coach. In that time, the Bulldogs have posted four double-digit win seasons, won the SEC East four times, earned three bowl victories, captured one SEC championship and made the College Football Playoff twice.

Stetson Bennett is proving naysayers wrong this season so far. He had one of his best games in a Georgia uniform against Oregon, throwing for 362 yards and two touchdowns. The rest of the Bulldogs offense also shined as Georgia scored a touchdown on each of their first seven possessions. It was just the second time that has happened in a matchup between ranked teams. The line largely dominated against what was considered a solid Oregon defensive front. Wide receivers Adonai Mitchell and Ladd McConkey flashed and tight end Darnell Washington had plenty of highlights.

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Alabama is home this week for the beginning of its SEC play. The Crimson Tide faces Vanderbilt on Saturday at 6:30 pm CT. The Georgia Bulldogs also play at home against Kent State 11 am CT.

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