ATHENS — To most of those playing in Saturday’s game against Alabama, the previous result against the Crimson Tide means nothing.
Kirby Smart certainly sees it that way. For players such as Carson Beck or Kamari Lassiter, star players who were backups on the 2021 team, the win over Alabama does very little for their psyche heading into the SEC championship game.
“That game doesn’t matter at all to me,” Lassiter said. “That was two years ago, I was a freshman, I barely even played. That game doesn’t really matter to me or anyone else on either side. The only thing that matters is today really and trying to put your best foot forward to prepare for a game like this.”
But there are a few older players who did start and play key roles in Georgia’s 33-18 win over Alabama in the 2022 National Championship Game. Brock Bowers scored a touchdown on Georgia’s final offensive play of the game. Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint had a key block on that play of Kool-Aid McKinstry, who is still starting at cornerback for Alabama.
Sedrick Van Pran was Georgia’s starting center that day. He’ll do so yet again on Saturday for Georgia. All that experience will be invaluable in a game that Van Pran referred to as a “trench war.”
Yet what Van Pran remembers most from that evening was something that former Georgia running back Nick Chubb did.
“In the locker room after, Nick Chubb, I went up to him and thanked him for everything he did for the University,” Van Pran said. “I remember him telling me, ‘Nah man. Thank you. I can finally sleep again.’ That was one of the coolest moments I’ve had at Georgia with a legend like that come to me and be thankful for something we had accomplished as a team.”
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