The No. 13 Georgia Bulldogs used a strong defensive effort to take a 34-0 shutout win over No. 23 Missouri in front of a sold out Memorial Stadium and a nationally televised CBS audience in Columbia, Mo., on Saturday, Oct. 11. The win put the Bulldogs at 5-1 on the year, including a 3-1 mark in Southeastern Conference action. Missouri dropped to 4-2 on the year and 1-1 in league action. The win was the first time Missouri had been blanked since 2002.
The Georgia defense forced five turnovers, including four interceptions to keep Missouri off the board. Quincy Mauger led the take away parade with two interceptions. The Bulldogs also had three sacks on the day, led by Leonard Floyd and Lorenzo Carter with one each. Ramik Wilson, Amarlo Herrera and Tim Kimbrough led the team with four tackles each. Herrera was one of six players to record a tackle for a loss.
Nick Chubb recorded his first 100-yard rushing game, finishing with 143 yards on 38 carries and a touchdown. Brenden Douglas added 65 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries. Hutson Mason led Georgia’s passing attack, going 22-for-28 for 156 yards and a touchdown. Michael Bennett was his top target, hauling in 53 yards on five catches.
Georgia opened up to a 20-0 lead in the first half after scoring on the four of the first five possessions of the game. The defense started the day strong, forcing Mizzou to punt on its opening drive. On the ensuing possession, Mason orchestrated an 11-play, 45-yard drive that resulted in a 47-yard field goal by Marshall Morgan that put Georgia up 3-0. The drive was highlighted by a 12-yard pass from Mason to Chubb that gave the Bulldogs a first down inside Mizzou territory.
Georgia got another chance on the next Missouri drive, as Mauger picked off Maty Mauk at the Missouri 47. The Bulldogs were unable to get any points off of the interception, but were given a second chance on the next drive. On the second play of the drive, Damian Swann intercepted Mauk. The Bulldogs were able to put points on the board after a six yard pass from Mason to Jeb Blazevich set up a 29-yard field goal that made it a 6-0 game.
The Bulldogs added seven points after a 13-play, 71-yard drive. Mason spread the ball around on the drive, hitting three different receivers before taking the ball in on an 11-yard touchdown run that made it a 13-0 game after the Morgan PAT.
Mason and the rest of the Georgia offense kept the pressure on, scoring a touchdown on its next possession to make it a 20-0 game. Malcolm Mitchell and Bennett recorded catches of five and 11 yards, respectively, to put the Bulldogs at midfield. Facing 2nd-and-11, Chubb scampered for 18 yards and a first down. Georgia kept the Tigers guessing by mixing both run and pass plays to get inside the Mizzou 10. On 1st-and-Goal, Mason put the ball where only Bennett could get in in the back corner of the end zone for a touchdown that made it a 20-0 game. The teams had a couple more chances in the first half, but the Bulldogs maintained its 20-0 lead going into halftime. It was the first time since 2004 that a team had held Mizzou scoreless in the first half.
The Bulldog defense continued to disrupt Mauk in the opening possessions of the second half, as Mauger and Dominick Sanders recorded interceptions on each of Mizzou’s first two drives. It was the third and fourth interception of the game for Mauk and the Tigers. Following Sanders’ pick, the Georgia offense kept the ball on the ground, as Chubb tallied 28 yards before Douglas ran the final 18, including a 15-yard touchdown run that ended with him leaping over the defender and into the end zone, putting Georgia up 27-0 following the extra point.
It was all Chubb on the next offensive possession for the Bulldogs. Working with a short field after taking over near midfield, Chubb rushed for 43 of Georgia’s 52 yards during the 10 play drive that ate over six minutes off the clock. The drive was capped off by a nine-yard touchdown run by Chubb, his first touchdown of the day, that made it a 34-0 game.
Mizzou got the ball back after the touchdown, but the Bulldogs forced a three-and-out. On the ensuing possession, Georgia stuck to its ground game and held the ball for the final 6:24 of the game. Douglas was the work horse on the final drive, getting seven touches for 27 yards that sealed the 34-0 win.
Georgia continues its road swing next Saturday, Oct. 18 when it travels to Little Rock, Ark., to face the Arkansas Razorbacks at 4 p.m., on the SEC Network.
*Historic Shutout: With the 34-0 win over #23 Missouri, Georgia posted its first road shutout over a ranked team today since 1982 when it blanked 20th-ranked Florida 44-0 in Jacksonville, and that’s a neutral site contest. Today marked the first time in school history that Georgia did it on an opponent’s home field. The other shutouts over ranked teams came in Athens or in bowl games including beating #18 Missouri in the 1960 Orange Bowl in Miami. Today was the ninth shutout under Coach Richt and the fourth in the SEC. With the win, the Bulldogs improve to 5-1 overall, 3-1 in the SEC.
*Next Man Up: Freshman TB Nick Chubb exploded for a career-high 38 carries for 143 yards and one TD, which gives him his first 100-yard rushing game, during the first start of his career. This is the most carries for a Bulldog since Verron Haynes went for 207 yards on 39 carries during the 2001 Georgia Tech game. The 38 carries ranks in a tie for sixth most in a game by a Bulldog. Also, Chubb had a career-high four catches for 31 yards.
*Defense Flexing: The Georgia defense blanked the Tigers, holding them to 147 yards of total offense on 43 plays. In the first half, they held the Tigers to just 76 yards (25 rushing, 51 passing) and forced three turnovers in the first half. Missouri had only four first downs in the first two quarters, and two of those came on the final drive of the half.
*Mason On Target: Senior QB Hutson Mason finished (18 ties season best, 22 career best) 18-for-23 (78 percent) for 156 yards and a touchdown. Mason capped off Georgia’s third scoring drive with an 11-yard scoring run to put Georgia up 13-0. This marks Mason’s third touchdown run of the year. The Bulldogs went up 20-0 on a 9-yard fade to senior receiver Michael Bennett. This is Bennett’s third touchdown catch this year and 16th of his career, which is tied for sixth in the school history.
Georgia’s offense ran 87 plays to Missouri’s 43, and the 87 ties for the most ever under Mark Richt while the 58 rushing plays is the most ever in the Richt era. The Bulldogs dominated the clock, holding the ball for 42:23.
*Points Off Turnovers: The Bulldogs now have a +9 turnover margin thanks to four interceptions and a fumble recovery. The Tigers came into the game with a +5 turnover margin. The last time Georgia had four interceptions in a game was in the 41-10 victory over #10 Hawaii in the 2008 Sugar Bowl. It was the first fumble Missouri has given up this year after coming in with two fumbles on the year. Six different members of the secondary have the eight picks for the Bulldogs this season. Georgia had seven interceptions in 2013. Georgia has scored 34 points off 13 turnovers while opponents have tallied three points off four Bulldog miscues.
Quincy Mauger picked off Missouri’s Maty Mauk at the 7:27 point in the opening period. The Bulldogs went 3-and-out on the next possession. On the next Tiger series, Damian Swann tallied his second interception of the year and fifth of his career on a tipped ball. Morgan drilled a 29-yard field goal after the turnover to put Georgia up 6-0. Sophomore OLB Leonard Floyd hit Mauk as he passed late in the second quarter and junior DE Sterling Bailey jumped on it. Georgia was forced to punt again on its next try.
At the start of the third quarter, Mauger snagged a tipped ball for his second pick of the game. The last time a Bulldog had two interceptions in a game was Swann with two in the 2013 Outback Bowl. Georgia had to punt again after this possession. Dominick Sanders recorded his first career interception at the 5:37 mark in the third quarter.
*Through The Uprights: Junior PK Marshall Morgan put the Bulldogs up 3-0 on a season-long 47-yard field goal at the 8:54 mark in the first period. Morgan then connected on a 29-yard field goal late in the first quarter. He is now 7-of-9 on the year.
*Starters: True freshman TB Nick Chubb got his first career start. Sophomore CB Brendan Langley started his first game this season and fifth overall in his career. Langley switched to offense during the offseason but returned to defense last week and had xx stops on Saturday. Senior C David Andrews made his team-leading 33rd consecutive start. Also of note, junior receiver Justin Scott-Wesley played for the first time this season following a 2013 knee injury.
*Captains: Georgia’s captains today were David Andrews, Ray Drew and Damian Swann.
*On Deck: Georgia travels to Little Rock, Ark., next weekend to face Arkansas at 4 p.m. ET (SEC Network)
HEAD COACH MARK RICHT
“We are very excited about the victory, you just don’t expect that coming in here to Missouri, where you find a football team on both sides of the ball, special teams, they are just an outstanding team. For us to have that type of performance is pretty exciting for me, so I am very thankful for the win, and looking forward to playing Arkansas next week.”
On how emotional were the guys for the game…
“I thought we practiced really well this week. We gave the team the news just prior to practice on Thursday. We thought it would be in everybody’s best interest to just get used to practicing and playing without Todd, obviously, it was just prior to going on the field, but I thought everybody handled it well. You know, football is a team sport, and those guys know it, and as you said it has a lot to do with emotion. I thought our guys did a great job listening to our coaches and trying to do it the way we were coaching them and they added a lot of energy and emotion to the game. Whether it was because of what happened earlier in the week or not, I don’t know that answer, but I am just proud of the effort that everybody put in.”
On the locker room celebration…
“Well I missed most of it, CBS got me, ESPN got me, we have to walk a half mile to get back to the locker room and everybody was already in the locker room. I tried to jog in. My femur started getting mad at me so I had to walk. I think I missed most of the good stuff, but they were in good spirits. Just proud of them all.”
On when was it known the team would be without Todd Gurley and how that affected preparation…
“We didn’t know really until Thursday, but I prefer not to talk a whole lot about that right now. I rather just talk about this game and what everybody else did.”
On Todd Gurley being out…
“We basically knew about it when you all found out. Coach Richt called a team meeting. I mean he didn’t tell us the details, all of it is just speculation. Todd is a big part of our offense, and I know he is one of the best players in the country. But we had a chip on our shoulder as far as we don’t have Todd and everyone thinks that the world is falling apart. So we took it upon ourselves that we need to show everybody that there are 10 other guys on our offense that are making this thing go, and 11 other guys on defense. It was a very big inspirational win, and a lot of emotions went into it.
On getting into a rhythm passing…
“It’s all about getting comfortable and getting into a rhythm. I always felt that if I can get into a rhythm, then I finally feel that I am in the flow of things and from the start of the game today, I felt like I was in a rhythm and the rest of it was just out there playing ball. That is really where you are most effective, not thinking much. A lot of that has to do with the new mindset that I have as far as not over thinking things and not over doing things and not trying to get everything right just playing off instincts and reacting. That’s what got me here and that’s what got me at the highest level.”
On what worked so well for you guys today…
“We just went out there and competed. We know that a lot of everything is going to be on defense.
On coming together as a team…
“No, it’s just the fact that we all came together and played as a team. That’s how every game is. As long as you stay together as a team, you have the greatest opposition.”
On starting at running back…
“Coming in behind Todd made me a little nervous, but I’ve been playing football my whole life so I just kept doing what I was doing. Everybody just told me that they believed in me and to play hard. It kind of just hit me in the face Thursday. We all got the news at the same time and we had to just keep practicing hard to come out here and do what we did today.”
On his 38 carries…
“I feel pretty good right now, but tomorrow we’ll see. I was ready for whatever they threw at me. You have to keep running your feet and go low so they can’t hit you hard.”
On being productive out there today in a new position…
“It’s been fun. Nothing’s really changed since the switch. I just have to be an athlete, and I’m happy to be able to contribute to the team anyway I can.”
On being surprised on his amount of playing time…
“I wouldn’t necessarily say I am surprised, probably more happy and anxious than anything. I really enjoyed it, and wherever they put me, I just have to make plays.”
On whether or not the position change was his idea or the coaching staff’s…
“It was a mutual thing. They asked me how I felt about it, and like I said: whatever I can do to help the team, I am willing to do. So they threw me out there and gave me the opportunity. I was prepared, so I guess I did well.”
On what he is continuing to work on…
“Really my press technique. The way we play, we play a lot of man, so that’s something that I am going to have to continue to get good at. Once I get that down, I think I’ll be alright.”
MIZZOU HEAD COACH GARY PINKEL
On Saturday’s loss…
“Obviously we’re remarkably disappointed. I’m responsible. We’ve had good weeks of practice, and I thought our preparation was good. I didn’t see anything different. We just had our struggles. ”
On offensive struggles….
“It’s about execution and obviously we’re struggling right now. We turned the ball over five times; I don’t ever remember in my career if we’ve turned the ball over five times before. That magnifies things tremendously and obviously puts a tremendous amount of pressure on your defense. With a combination of all those things, it wasn’t a very good day.”
On the importance of turnovers…
“For years we’ve been talking about it and generally we’ve been very, very good with it. We work just as hard now as we’ve ever worked, but we’re just going through this and obviously, if you have that stat that extreme on one side, it’s very difficult to win any game. Five-to-nothing on turnovers – most likely you don’t have a chance to beat anybody. ”
On looking ahead…
“Half the season is left so there’s a lot out there, but we’ve got to get some things fixed. There’s an urgency to get things fixed and playing better and I think that’s without question. Georgia is a very good football team who played well and I think you have to give them credit, but obviously I’m very disappointed we didn’t play better.”
SENIOR DE MARKUS GOLDEN
On how the Mizzou offense and defense support each other throughout the game…
“It’s football. If the offense isn’t doing too well, we have to go out there. They had to head out a couple of times when we weren’t doing too well. It’s a team sport.”
On whether or not the defense was worn down…
“No, not at all. They just came out and did their thing. They came out and scored and made some good plays. They were very effective. Anytime you have the best pass-rushing team coming at you, you have to get the ball out and they did. They did their job. They did what they were supposed to do.”
On what he said to the team after the game (as a captain)…
“We’re going to fix it. We just have to get it together. This is just one game and we have to move on. That’s the good thing about football – you get to move on and you get to play again. You get to go to practice tomorrow.”
SOPHOMORE QB MATY MAUK
On whether he felt good going into the game…
“I thought we had a great week at practice and came out and executed all week. We came into the game, and I’m not sure what happened but it’s something we have to fix. They did exactly what we expected them to do and yeah, they beat us, but it’s really us beating ourselves again.”
On whether a game like this shakes his confidence…
“No, not at all. The game is already over, and there’s nothing we can do about it. That’s how you have to look at it. We’re going to come in and watch film tomorrow, but now our main focus is getting better this week and work on being consistent, executing our offense, and having a great game against Florida.”
JUNIOR DE SHANE RAY
On what the defense can do to help prevent losses like this…
“Our job never stops. As long as we continue to go out and execute to the best of our ability, we’re doing all we can as a defense. ”
On whether or not he thinks the team will have trouble bouncing back from this loss…
“Not at all. We’re going to take this, take a look at the film, and get ready for another week.”
On how the Georgia offense was playing versus what they had seen in film…
“They didn’t do anything that they haven’t already been doing. They stuck to their traditional Georgia style of play. We have to make the plays. It’s that simple.”
SENIOR TB MARCUS MURPHY
On message to Maty Mauk…
“I’m with him. Every game is not going to be your best game. One game could be your worst game, but we’re out in this together. It’s not just him. It’s all of us. It’s the offense and the defense and the special teams group. We just have to come back and stay focused on our ultimate goal. We have to come out ready for next week.”
On week off making the team flat…
“I don’t really think it was the week off. We prepared for this game all last week. We just came out flat today. I really don’t know how to explain it. We didn’t come out like Mizzou usually does, and we can’t play like that. We’ll get beat by anybody in the country.”
On feeling this game would eventually turn around…
“We were focused the whole game. We were pushing for that spark, that big play. It just never came. We had a couple drives we could have got things going, but we turned the ball over. We have to be more consistent as an offense and moving the ball downfield.”
Courtesy of UGA Sports Communications