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Over the weekend, the preseason AP Poll was released. At the top of that poll, Alabama reigned supreme. Of a possible 60 first-place votes, the two-time defending BCS champs received 58. As far as those other first-place votes, one went to Ohio State, a team that many people are predicting will face Bama in this year’s final BCS title game.
The other first-place vote went to Georgia. It wasn’t cast by someone living in the Peach State, either. It was cast by longtime LSU beat writer Glenn Guilbeau. When contacted by Chip Towers of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, here’s what he had to say about his decision to tab the Bulldogs for the national crown:
“I was surprised (more didn’t). Georgia easily could have won it all last year and they return most of their offense and (Aaron) Murray from that team. And I think it’s good that they don’t return that defense. Sometimes it’s better when you don’t return players from a bad unit, you know? So I think that’s a good thing, too. And I just think it might be their turn. I think that’s what happens; sometimes it’s just a team’s turn.”
All championship teams need breaks here or there. For Alabama, can they get those breaks for a third year in a row? The odds would suggest no. And what team has always been thisclose to winning a title? Georgia. Which means that the odds might be in Mark Richt’s favor this year. They could be due. It could be their turn, as Guilbeau says.
After all, just last season they finished one five-yard pass away from knocking off the Tide head to head and taking their place in the BCS Championship Game against Notre Dame.
So while most everyone is jotting down Alabama at the top of their picks list, there’s no shame in tabbing someone else to win the SEC and finish #1 in the country. If Georgia’s offense lives up to its billing and its defense improves as the year goes on… the Dawgs are as good a pick as any.