The so-called experts aren’t giving TCU a chance, installing Georgia as a nearly two-touchdown favorite in Monday’s NCAA Football National Championship Game. Listening to them, you would think that a second straight national championship is a formality for Kirby Smart’s Bulldogs.
My first thought is that we should know better by now. These same talking heads, writers, and odds makers did not give the Horned Frogs a single vote in the preseason. Everyone waited for TCU to fail. Few felt they had a chance against Michigan in the National Championship semifinals.
All the Horn Frogs do is win. They truly know how to win. If the game is close, they will win. Six of the school’s wins this year have been by a single score. TCU outplayed Michigan on both the offensive and defensive fronts. They have an opportunistic defense as evidenced by their two pick-sixes against the Wolverines.
I am here to say that Georgia is much more beatable this year than it was last season. The Bulldogs were very fortunate to get by shorthanded Ohio State it their semifinal matchup. It needed everything to break right in the fourth quarter. If Marvin Harrison Jr. doesn’t suffer a head injury late in the third quarter, or safety Lathan Ransom doesn’t slip, leading to a 76-yard Arian Smith touchdown catch midway through the fourth quarter, the Bulldogs’ season may have come to an end.
In other words, Georgia is beatable.
The Bulldogs secondary is clearly an issue. Ohio State and C.J. Stroud compiled for 384 passing yards and four touchdowns against it. TCU quarterback Max Duggan and game-breaking wideout Quentin Johnston will be tough for the Bulldogs to handle. Duggan, like Stroud, was a Heisman finalist. He directs a TCU offense that averages over 40 points a game.
I agree that Georgia should be favored. This is a team that has now won 16 straight games and 30 of their last 31. Yet, counting out TCU would be a mistake. The Horned Frogs outplayed a good Michigan team. They belong. They’ve proven it time and again this season.