The Georgia Bulldogs get a shot at revenge against Alabama in the college football national championship, and the stage shouldn’t be too big for them. Kirby Smart has his team prepared for a battle, and it’s an opponent they’re used to seeing. They’ve been close recently but haven’t been able to seal the deal. Now, they’re looking for their first championship in over 40 years.
How many national championships does Georgia have?
Georgia has six national championships to its name. Herman Stegeman, George Woodruff, Wally Butts, and Vince Dooley all brought titles back to Athens. Butts and Dooley both won two each, with Dooley winning the most recent one in 1980. Mark Richt had Georgia football in a good place from 2001-2015, but the Dawgs couldn’t quite get to the national championship game. However, when Kirby Smart took over in 2016, that all changed.
Smart managed to improve the recruiting to an even better level, but he also elevated the play on the field. It’s no surprise where his program is at this point, and now he just needs to find a way to take another step.
Georgia wins its first title under Kirby Smart
Georgia fans aren’t a stranger to heartbreak, unfortunately. First, there was the loss in the 2012 SEC Championship Game. If only Aaron Murray didn’t complete that pass. A win over Alabama would have vaulted the Bulldogs into the national championship to face Notre Dame (a team that Alabama thrashed 42-14).
Next, Smart’s Bulldogs won an all-time thriller in 2017 over Oklahoma in the Rose Bowl to send them to the national championship against the Tide. Georgia had them right where they wanted. After a field goal of their own, Jonathan Ledbetter and Davin Bellamy sacked Tua Tagovailoa to push Alabama back to the 41-yard line. Unfortunately for the Dawgs, Tua found DeVonta Smith for a touchdown the next play.
Their luck changed when the Dawgs held off Alabama to win the 2021-22 national championship 33-18. They faced similar adversity in this one, but stood strong defensively and made some explosive plays on offense. It was their first championship since 1980.
A win over Alabama could lead Georgia into a dynasty
Georgia football continues to be a contender in college football, but Kirby Smart’s taken it to another level. Top-five recruiting classes yield NFL talent that gets them to the national championship. In their way is the current dynasty of the sport.
Getting that weight off Smart’s shoulders wasn’t easy, but now he could turn into a dynasty of their own. If Smart continues recruiting elite classes and producing freak athletes that make incredible plays, they’ll be a force to be reckoned with in college football.
Recruiting at a high level and developing that talent into a potential juggernaut make them a force to be reckoned with this year. The first step was to take down Alabama and Nick Saban. From there, the number of titles should increase.