ATHENS — Kirby Smart has been an opposing player or coach at Auburn 11 times, twice as a Georgia safety, three times as the UGA head coach, once as an LSU assistant and five times as an Alabama assistant.
It’s always loud and exciting, and Smart expects nothing less when he leads the No. 1-ranked Bulldogs into Jordan-Hare Stadium at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday.
“It will be one helluva environment,” said Smart, who is 8-3 as a player and coach in Jordan-Hare Stadium. “They do an incredible job with their fan base.”
The last time Georgia traveled with a two-time defending national championship program into Auburn, the famous “Kick-Six” happened and the Alabama program Smart was once a part of was dethroned in a 34-28 loss.
Smart doesn’t like that two-time defending champ Georgia (4-0, 1-0 SEC) is playing its first road game this late into the season, much less having to do it at a place like Auburn (3-1, 0-1).
“I would not want to draw it up that way,” Smart admitted on Saturday night. “I really believe in playing at a neutral site or getting a road game, but there’s not a lot of control I have over that, either.”
Fact is, Smart has far less control over scheduling than other national championship coaches, as evidenced by the decision by UGA administration to continue playing the program’s biggest rivalry game out of state and hundreds of miles away from Sanford Stadium.
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