Will Sahlie, sports editor
The turning point of the season is finally here.
Despite its loss at LSU, Auburn controls its own destiny as Amen Corner finally arrives.
So, how will Auburn fare against the No. 1 team in the country? That is the question all Auburn fans want to know.
On paper, the Tigers matchup well with Georgia. Auburn has stopped the run at a decent clip this season, and clearly that is the Bulldogs’ strong suit.
Nick Chubb and Sony Michel form the most lethal backfield duo the Tigers have faced this season. Georgia freshman quarterback Jack Fromm is a capable passer and can make throws that could potentially beat Auburn.
However, something feels different about this game. This is arguably the game in Jordan-Hare since 2013, and Auburn fans will make it an extremely hostile environment, something Fromm has not faced in his career.
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Expect Kerryon Johnson to continue to have the most impressive season of his career, and Jarrett Stidham to continue having success on deep throws.
I’ll take the Tigers in a knockdown, drag out battle that comes down to the final few drives.
Score prediction: Auburn 27, Georgia 23.
Nathan King, assistant sports editor
Auburn couldn't have asked for a more perfect situation to be in.
Well, in terms of making the College Football Playoff, that is. Auburn has dates with No. 1 Georgia and No. 2 Alabama in the next three weeks -- a perfect way for a two-loss team to sneak into the Top 4.
In terms of degree of difficulty, the back end of the season couldn't be worse for the Tigers. Beating rivals Georgia twice and Alabama once would be an astonishing finish, and it starts this Saturday.
Georgia is 9-0 for the first time since 1982, and will play for the SEC Championship in Atlanta for the first time since 2012. Led by true freshman QB Jake Fromm and No. 5 SEC all-time rusher Nick Chubb, the UGA offense is efficent as a heat pump, while the defense has stifled every opponent it's faced. So, where are the advantages for Auburn?
Jarrett Stidham will have to earn his stripes in this one. He's played well at Jordan-Hare all season, and will need a more-than-stellar showing to upset UGA. Both teams will likely stack the box to halt both talented tailback units, so it will be up to the first-year SEC quarterbacks to win this one through the air.
Georgia hasn't faced a front seven this talented all year. Jeff Holland and company have been terrorizing offensive lines as of late, a fad that will be priority No. 1 for Kevin Steele.
When it comes down to the basics, these teams are very similar: New QBs who are playing the biggest game of their lives, fantastic runningback play and elite defense. Georgia is the more proven squad this year, as Auburn seems to see-saw between SEC West contending and offensively inept.
This is the biggest game in Auburn since the "Kick Six" Iron Bowl win over Alabama in 2013. The crowd knows that and how important a win would be. Jordan-Hare will be defeaning, which it hasn't really been since 2014. The momentum and energy for Gus Malzahn's team should keep them in it for four quarters.
If there was a team to down UGA this year, it's Auburn. If there was a game in which the Tigers will untap their potential, it's this one. And if there was ever a game where Auburn needed Daniel Carlson, it's this one.
Score prediction: Auburn 30, Georgia 27.
Tyler Roush, sports reporter
It's a challenging task to take on an impressive offense, headlined by the SEC's fifth all-time leading rusher, and the nation's fourth best total defense.
But being at Jordan-Hare stadium is different, and for some strange reason the Auburn Tigers are favorited.
It's a strange world.
It's arguably the biggest game on campus in since 2013, where the Tiger also went on to win the SEC Championship with a berth in the final BCS Championship. Now would be the time for quarterback Jarrett Stidham to leave a mark on the SEC, playing well against the top-ranked team in the country provides several opportunities to show that you deserve the No. 10 ranking.
I feel like Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm will steal the spotlight, however, and bring his team over the top late in the second half.
Score prediction: Georgia 28, Auburn 20
Sumner Martin, sports writer
All eyes will be on Jordan-Hare this weekend.
For the second week in a row, the undefeated Georgia Bulldogs are the No. 1 team in the country in the College Football Playoff poll and, just last week, Kirby Smart's squad secured their spot in the SEC championship game.
Auburn, who is now No. 10 in the playoff poll, is coming off back-to-back road wins against Arkansas and Texas A&M.
The key to the game will most definitely be the quarterback play. Freshman Jake Fromm has proven himself as the leader of the Georgia offense since Jacob Eason's injury, completing 63.3 percent of his throws for over 1,400 yards and 15 touchdowns, while only throwing four interceptions. Auburn quarterback Jarrett Stidham has also been accurate, completing almost 67 percent of his passes, but has struggled against top defenses, like Clemson and LSU, this year.
Both teams can run the ball and both defenses are among the best in the country in stopping the run. There won't be much room for Nick Chubb or Kerryon Johnson in this matchup. The defenses are going to load the box and force Fromm and Stidham to beat them through the air. Whichever quarterback can make more throws down the field will lead his team to victory.
The Tigers have home field advantage and a great defense, and that should be enough to keep it close. However, this Georgia team is simply better. The Bulldog defense will keep Auburn in check, with Fromm converting on a few more key throws than his counterpart Stidham down the stretch.
The Bulldogs have won five out of the last six in this series, and I don't see that trend changing this year. They remain unbeaten Saturday.
Score Prediction: Georgia 23, Auburn 20.
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