November 1, 2007

Dawgs prepare to host Troy

The 10th-ranked Georgia Bulldogs are just two days away from Saturday's kickoff against Troy but the euphoria created from the team's 42-30 win over Florida has yet to subside.

That's got Head Coach Mark Richt concerned.

"I think there's probably still a little bit of surge of energy left over, but what goes up must come down," Richt said. "Ideally, you want it to come down the middle of the week and raise it back up the weekend."

If not, Richt said the joy being experienced by Georgia fans could well turn to sorrow if the Bulldogs (6-2) aren't mentally prepared.

Fullback Brannan Southerland doesn't believe there will be any problems.

"Everybody was still very excited when we came out here Sunday, but on Monday, there were a lot of us having to take the Regents Test. I think we've been able to take a deep breath and collect ourselves," Southerland said. "I think we'll be OK."

Richt says the Bulldogs had better be.

The Trojans are no slouch. Troy (6-2) is the defending Sun Belt Conference champions and enters play on a six-game winning streak after losing to Arkansas (46-26) and Florida (59-31) to start the year.

Among its six victories was a 41-23 trouncing of Oklahoma State, the same Cowboy team beaten by the Bulldogs in their season-opener, 35-14.

"People have talked an awful lot about emotion, and fire and attitude and all that. And yes, it's absolutely critical," Richt said. "But I think we can't forget the most important issues of protecting the football and to keep getting better fundamentally and make sure we understand the game-plan. Just being fired up does not mean you're going to win. That's not the case."

It was the case against the Gators.

Lost in the all the hoopla surrounding the celebration following Georgia's first touchdown was the fact that the Bulldog offense executed the best it has all year.

If you include Matthew Stafford's two long bombs for touchdowns to Mohamed Massaquoi and Mikey Henderson, the Bulldogs were a perfect 6-for-6 in red zone opportunities and only missed points when kicker Brandon Coutu was short on a long field goal attempt in the second quarter.

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