GAMEDAY College Football

Orange Bowl: Georgia 34, Michigan 11

(AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

By RALPH D. RUSSO
AP College Football Writer

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. - With one overwhelming half at the Orange Bowl, No. 3 Georgia showed that a humbling loss to Alabama did not break the Bulldogs.

In fact, it might have made them even stronger.

Stetson Bennett threw three touchdown passes, Nakobe Dean led an angry defense and Georgia returned to its dominant ways, beating No. 2 Michigan 34-11 to advance to the College Football Playoff championship.

Georgia (13-1) earned a rematch with Southeastern Conference nemesis Alabama (13-1) in the title game Jan. 10 in Indianapolis.

It was a little less than a month ago the Crimson Tide rolled through the Bulldogs, shattering their air of invincibility after a 12-0 regular season in which they were hardly challenged.

If there was any question about whether the damage from that 41-24 setback would linger, the Bulldogs answered them quickly.

Georgia became the first team in the eight-year history of the CFP to score on each of its first five possessions and led 27-3 at halftime.

Michigan (12-2) entered its first playoff appearance off a milestone season, having ended a long drought against rival Ohio State on the way to winning the Big Ten.

"Let'er rip," Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh told ESPN moments before kickoff.

The Bulldogs most certainly did, playing like a team out to prove a point.

Georgia scored touchdowns the first two times it had the ball, moving it at will against Heisman Trophy runner-up Aidan Hutchinson and the Michigan defense.

Bennett found freshman tight end Brock Bowers free in the flats for an 8-yard touchdown pass to cap an 80-yard opening drive.

Georgia grabbed a two-touchdown lead, hitting Michigan with some of the trickery the Wolverines have used so well this season. Tailback Kenny McIntosh swept to the right and let loose a perfect pass to Adonai Mitchell for an 18-yard TD that made it 14-0 less than five minutes into the game.

The Wolverines had rolled to their first Big Ten championship since 2004 without trailing by as many as seven points this season.

The Bulldogs tacked on field goals on their next two possessions and Bennett connected on a 57-yard touchdown pass to Jermaine Burton streaking down the sideline to make it 27-3 with 1:38 left in the half.

And that was was pretty much that. The Bulldogs dominated in every way, outgaining the Wolverines 330-101 in the first 30 minutes.

The Georgia defense that was setting an historic pace, allowing less than a touchdown per game, before getting shredded by Alabama, smothered a Michigan offense built to bully opponents.

The Bulldogs were having none of that.

Dean, the Butkus Award-winning linebacker, was diagnosing plays before the snap and chasing down ball carriers from sideline to sideline.

Massive nose tackle Jordan Davis was collapsing the middle of a Michigan offensive line that won the Joe Moore Award as the best in the country.

Cornerback Derion Kendrick has two interceptions and was the defensive player of the game.

The Wolverines finished with 88 yards rushing after coming in averaging 223 per game. Cade McNamara was 11 for 19 for 106 yards passing.

Simply, it was no contest and now the Bulldogs will get a shot at redemption against Alabama, trying to win their first national title since 1980.

All the stands in the way is the most accomplished dynasty in the history of college football, the rivalry that Georgia coach Kirby Smart, a longtime Nick Saban assistant at Alabama, has tried to model his program after.

Georgia opened as 2 1/2-point favorite, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.


Scoring Summary
First Quarter UGaMich
UGa TD 10:49 Brock Bowers 9 yard TD pass from Stetson Bennett (Jack Podlesny Extra Point) 7 0
UGa TD 4:41 Adonai Mitchell 18 yard TD pass from Kenny McIntosh (Jack Podlesny Extra Point) 14 0
Second Quarter UGaMich
UGa FG 12:26 Jack Podlesny 43 yard field goal 17 0
Mich FG 7:16 Jake Moody 36 yard field goal 17 3
UGa FG 3:50 Jack Podlesny 28 yard field goal 20 3
UGa TD 1:38 Jermaine Burton 57 yard TD pass from Stetson Bennett (Jack Podlesny Extra Point) 27 3
Fourth Quarter UGaMich
UGa TD 11:11 James Cook 39 yard TD pass from Stetson Bennett (Jack Podlesny Extra Point) 34 3
Mich TD 4:25 Andrel Anthony 35 yard TD pass from J.J. McCarthy (A.J. Henning 2pt conversion attempt is GOOD) 34 11
Team Stats
  Georgia Michigan
First downs 21 18
  Rushing 12 7
  Passing 9 9
  Penalty 0 2
3rd Down Efficiency 10-16, 63% 9-15, 60%
4th down efficiency 1-1, 100% 0-3, 0%
Rushes-Yards 35-190 27-88
Passing Yards 325 237
Return Yards 18 16
Completions-Attempts-Int 22-32-0 18-36-2
Sacks-Yards Lost 0-0 3-20
Punts 2 2
Fumbles Lost 0-0 1-1
Penalties - Yards 5-70 4-30
Georgia Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
S. Bennett 21 31 307 3 0
K. McIntosh 1 1 18 1 0
Michigan Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
J. McCarthy 7 17 131 1 0
C. McNamara 11 19 106 0 2
Georgia Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
Z. White 12 54 4.5 0
D. Edwards 4 38 9.5 0
S. Bennett 3 32 10.7 0
J. Cook 6 32 5.3 0
K. Milton 7 21 3.0 0
L. McConkey 1 8 8.0 0
K. McIntosh 2 5 2.5 0
Michigan Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
H. Haskins 9 39 4.3 0
J. McCarthy 5 23 4.6 0
D. Edwards 4 16 4.0 0
B. Corum 3 10 3.3 0
C. McNamara 6 0 0.0 0
Georgia Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
J. Cook 3 99 33.0 1
B. Bowers 6 65 10.8 1
J. Burton 1 57 57.0 1
A. Mitchell 2 34 17.0 1
K. McIntosh 3 32 10.7 0
L. McConkey 2 14 7.0 0
Z. White 2 10 5.0 0
G. Pickens 1 9 9.0 0
K. Jackson 2 5 2.5 0
Michigan Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
E. All 4 63 15.8 0
D. Edwards 3 49 16.3 0
R. Wilson 1 42 42.0 0
A. Anthony 1 35 35.0 1
C. Johnson 2 18 9.0 0
H. Haskins 2 15 7.5 0
M. Sainristil 1 10 10.0 0
D. Baldwin 1 6 6.0 0
A. Henning 1 1 1.0 0
B. Corum 2 -2 -1.0 0
Georgia Interceptions
Player Int Yards
D. Kendrick 2 -8
Michigan Interceptions
Player Int Yards
Georgia Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
J. Camarda 2 91 45.5
Michigan Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
B. Robbins 2 89 44.5
Georgia Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Michigan Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
A. Henning 1 16 16.0
Georgia Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
K. Jackson 1 12 12.0
K. McIntosh 1 14 14.0
Michigan Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Georgia Missed FG
Player Length
J. Podlesny 45
Michigan Missed FG
Player Length




D1SportsNet