No. 3 Georgia faces No. 2 Oklahoma for first time in Rose Bowl, Will Georgia expose Oklahoma, or is SEC vs. Big 12 narrative dead, No. 3 Georgia faces No. 2 Oklahoma for 1st time in Rose Bowl watch online.
A spot in the College Football Playoff national championship game. The Bulldogs are making their first playoff appearance and have not won a national title since 1980. Second-year coach Kirby Smart guided Georgia to a big jump from 8-5 in his first season to Southeastern Conference champions. First-year coach Lincoln Riley led the Sooners to their third straight Big 12 championship and second playoff appearance in three seasons. The Sooners have not played for the national championship.
Few who live, work and breathe college football in the Southeast would ever entertain the thought that the Big 12 measures up against the SEC, unless we’re talking about Vanderbilt, because they don’t count. But Stoops retired in the offseason after thumping Auburn 35-19 in last season’s Sugar Bowl. His Sooners also jumped on Alabama for 31 first-half points and won 45-31 in the Sugar Bowl in 2013. (Nobody needs to remind Georgia coach Kirby Smart, who was Alabama’s defensive coordinator.) Stoops was 4-0 against the SEC down the stretch of his career, and he won a national championship (2000). But this week, the narrative gets new life. A physical, run-heavy Georgia team faces an Oklahoma team that seems straight.
Oklahoma’s offensive line against Georgia’s defensive front. QB Baker Mayfield draws most of the accolades for the Sooners, but the Heisman Trophy winner operates behind one of the best offensive lines in the country. Future high NFL draft picks man both tackles in All-American Orlando Brown and Bobby Evans. Georgia has run stuffers up front in their 3-4 defense in DE Trenton Thompson and NT John Atkins, but most of the pass rush comes from linebackers Roquan Smith, Lorenzo Carter.