Kirby Smart has done as good a job as any coach in the nation the last three seasons.
Smart is in his third year at Georgia after spending seven seasons as Alabama’s defensive coordinator, where he helped the Tide roll to four national championships.
After a rough first season with the Bulldogs in 2016 (8-5), Smart led the team to the SEC championship last season and all the way to overtime of the national title game, where the Dawgs fell just short against Alabama.
This season Georgia, has again been dominant. They were ranked No. 2 in the AP poll through the seasons first several weeks. The team however, suffered a crushing loss to No. 4 LSU that would knock them down.
After getting back on track against Florida and knocking them out of the SEC East race, Smart’s Bulldogs have to beat Kentucky in order to win the SEC East.
They head into the game ranked No. 6 in the nation and with a record of 7-1.
Smart knows that it will not be easy despite being 2-0 against Kentucky while at Georgia so far.
At his press conference Monday, Smart had a lot of praise for Kentucky, specifically for head coach Mark Stoops and the team’s defense.
“I got a lot of respect for Mark and the job he’s done. I think it’s really remarkable, and it shows the patience of an athletic department to stick with a guy who I think is one of the best coaches in all of college football.”
Smart also praised Kentucky’s defense coordinator Matt House.
“Their defensive coordinator, Coach House, is doing an incredible job.”
As for the players:
“Their whole defense, I think it’s seven or eight defensive players, seems like they’ve been playing for four years. You look back at the tape two years ago when we were up there playing; all those guys are still there. They’re really good football players” Smart said.
The one player Smart touched on specifically was Josh Allen. Smart confirmed what everyone already knows, saying “they’ve obviously got one of the best pass rushers in the country.”
Coach Smart knows No. 11 Kentucky is no pushover and that this game will be one that the Cats have a great chance of winning if Georiga does not bring their best.