Georgia senior defensive back Maurice Smith showed why the team pursued him as a graduate transfer in the offseason, after his pick-six en route to the 13-7 victory over Auburn.
On Monday, he was rewarded for his heroic efforts by the Southeastern Conference, being named the defensive player of the week. Smith’s play on Saturday marked his second interception of the season, and the first pick-six of his collegiate career. In addition to his interception, Smith collected three total tackles.
His defensive efforts were integral in holding Auburn to 164 total yards. Prior to Saturday’s game, the Tigers had averaged 494.1 yards of offense per game.
Smith’s honor gives Georgia three player of the week honors on the season. Nick Chubb was given an offensive player of the week honor after rushing for 222 yards against North Carolina, and Rodrigo Blankenship followed with co-special teams player of the week honors a week ago after converting on four field goals against Kentucky.
After the game on Saturday, Smith reiterated the gratitude of his big play.
“This makes it definitely worth while. It’s a blessing,” Smith said. “For me to be a part of this team and be able to help the team, I just love it. I was relieved [after the touchdown]. I had been wanting to get one for the longest time and I ended up getting it and God blessed me and the defense did a great job blocking.”