Top 25 College Football: Georgia 52, LSU 38
BATON ROUGE, La. ó Georgia coach Mark Richt once called the Tiger Stadium crowd the loudest he’d ever heard.
Knowshon Moreno may remember Death Valley more for the hush he caused with his tackle-breaking 68-yard touchdown run.
Moreno’s long score late in the third quarter gave ninth-ranked Georgia a three-touchdown lead, and the Bulldogs held on for a 52-38 victory over No. 11 LSU on Saturday that sent many Tigers fans to the exits early.
“I didn’t hear anything but somebody behind me trying to catch me,” Moreno said. “I was just running hard, trying to get an important score.”
The game showcased two of the best running backs in the Southeastern Conference, and neither disappointed. Moreno gained 163 yards, while LSU’s Charles Scott gained 144 yards and scored two touchdowns.
The Bulldogs (7-1, 4-1) had a big edge at quarterback, however, with the experienced Matthew Stafford calmly delivering clutch throws, none better than his 49-yard touchdown to fantastic freshman A.J. Green while the Tigers brought heavy pressure on third-and-10.
Stafford was 17-of-26 for 249 yards and two touchdowns passing and also ran for a 7-yard score in the fourth quarter while improving to 24-5 as a starter.
“Matthew is really maturing. He is standing in there when everything’s flying around him and focusing downfield and throwing strikes,” Richt said. “He’s really doing that as fine as I’ve ever seen him do it and as well as anyone I’ve ever coached.”
LSU’s tandem of first-year quarterbacks lacked the big-game savvy to match the performance of Georgia’s junior.
Redshirt freshman Jarrett Lee threw three interceptions, two of which were returned for touchdowns of 40 and 53 yards by Georgia linebacker Darryl Gamble. Lee was 14-of-28 for 287 yards and three touchdowns.
“The story is the mistakes,” LSU coach Les Miles said. “When you play a quality opponent, you can’t give them turnovers. You can’t uncover people in coverage. You can’t let runs that should be tackled go untackled. Our football team has to learn that. That’s my job. I promise you I will go about teaching it.”