1980 No Longer


Georgia starting quarterback Stetson Bennett IV kisses the CFP National Championship Trophy. (Photo by) @georgiafootball on ig

On Jan. 10, quarterback Stetson Bennett IV and the Georgia Football 2021-2022 team etched their name into UGA and college football history forever. 


The tide had been the one hurdle that Kirby Smart and his team had not been able to overcome, but that hurdle was cleared Monday night. A defensive battle was fought going into halftime with Alabama holding a field goal lead by the score of 9-6. Georgia finally broke the ice with a one yard touchdown run on the tail end of a 67 yard run for #4 James Cook. Bama would take the lead after scoring a touchdown after getting great field position after a controversial call ruling that Stetson Bennett IV fumbled the ball with Alabama recovering in bounds. The Tide were up 18-13 after a failed two point conversion but the momentum had once again swung in their favor. A methodical drive down the field ending in a 40 yard bomb hauled in by freshman wide receiver AD Mitchell (#5) gave the Dawgs a one point lead after they too failed to convert a two point conversion. A hold by the Georgia defense and a seven play 62 yard drive, resulting in a catch and run for a touchdown by freshman all-american tight end Brock Bowers (#19)  put the Dawgs up 8 points for a score of  26-18. The official dagger in the heart was a pick six by Georgia cornerback Kelee Ringo (#5) with 54 seconds left. The final score was 33-18, marking the first time in four decades that UGA won the national championship.


Bennett IV was in tears on the sidelines as the realization that they were gonna win set in. After walking on, being benched last season, and being buried in the depth chart this preseason, a wave of emotion took over the south Georgia and prior Forsyth county resident. 


 Georgia fans had seen it all since the last time they won a championship. In 2008, Alabama started the fear of wearing black jerseys for Georgia fans. In 2012, Georgia came up a few yards short of the endzone and a probable national championship win. In 2017, there was the loss to Alabama in double overtime and the infamous “2nd and 26”. In 2018, Alabama and Jalen Hurts stormed back to win in the SEC Championship. In 2020, Alabama beat them in the regular season in Tuscaloosa. And just on Dec. 4, Alabama once again overcame an early 10-0 lead to beat Georgia 41-24 in the SEC Championship. 


On Jan. 15, Georgia hosted a massive celebration and parade in Athens. The streets were lined with thousands of people, cheering on the national champions. Inside the stadium, coach Kirby Smart gave a few words of appreciation and reflection along with seniors #99 Jordan Davis and #69 Jamaree Salyer. Even the SEC commissioner Greg Sankey and Georgia’s governor Brian Kemp attended. The stadium was sold out and it was estimated that around 200,000 were in Athens for the festivities.