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Depleted Georgia Routs Kentucky

October 27, 2002|From Associated Press

Georgia played without three of its best players on offense, and it was hard to tell the Bulldogs missed them.

David Greene and D.J. Shockley combined to throw a school-record six touchdown passes Saturday, sending the No. 5 Bulldogs to a 52-24 rout of Kentucky at Lexington, Ky.

The Bulldogs (8-0, 5-0 in conference) produced 529 yards despite missing leading rusher Musa Smith, second-leading receiver Fred Gibson and offensive tackle Jon Stinchcomb. All were injured in the previous game against Vanderbilt.

"It made other guys step up and make big plays. This is the best game our offense has played," said Greene, a sophomore who improved to 7-0 as a starter in road games.

Georgia quarterbacks had never thrown even five touchdown passes in a game.

Greene finished 16 for 32 for 251 yards and four touchdowns, and Shockley went 10 of 14 for 102 yards and two touchdowns.

Georgia Coach Mark Richt replaced Greene with the more mobile Shockley about every third possession.

"It was perfect," Richt said. "I believed both players could play and they both had great performances. I'm thankful they both played well on the same day."

Terrence Edwards caught five passes for 127 yards, becoming Georgia's leader for receptions in a career. He also had three touchdown catches.

The Bulldogs are trying to win their first conference title since 1982, when they started 11-0 and lost to Penn State in the Sugar Bowl. They can clinch the Southeastern Conference East with a victory over Florida on Saturday.

"We still haven't done anything," Richt said. "Our goal is the SEC East and it's not in our hands yet."

Kentucky (5-3, 1-3) lost to a top 10 opponent for the 40th consecutive time.

Jared Lorenzen, who had thrown for a combined 905 yards in his previous two games against Georgia, started six for seven but finished 13 of 27 for 208 yards.

Georgia beat Kentucky for the sixth time in a row, but by the widest margin since a 40-7 victory in 1992. The previous four meetings in Lexington were decided by an average of four points.

*

No. 19 Alabama 34, No. 16 Tennessee 14 -- Santonio Beard ran for two touchdowns and the Crimson Tide (6-2, 3-1) took advantage of six turnovers in a victory at Knoxville, Tenn.

The Crimson Tide (6-2, 3-1) hadn't beaten Tennessee (4-3, 1-3) since 1994, when former Tennessee quarterback Peyton Manning was a freshman. It was a span of seven games.

It was the Volunteers' worst home loss since 1994, when they were beaten, 31-0, by Florida.

All Alabama needed was a strong running game, led by Beard and Shaud Williams. Of course, the Volunteers helped immensely with their mistakes.

Not even the return of quarterback Casey Clausen, who missed the last game with a shoulder injury, could help Tennessee. Clausen was hurt Oct. 5 against Arkansas and returned to practice last week.

Tennessee's struggles started early when Clausen fumbled a lateral to Derrick Tinsley. Alabama's Gerald Dixon recovered it and ran 66 yards down the sideline for a touchdown with 11:23 to go in the first quarter.

*

Arkansas 48, Mississippi 28 -- Fred Talley ran for 136 yards, and Arkansas' special teams scored twice at Fayetteville, Ark.

Arkansas (4-3, 2-3) got 24 points following Rebel turnovers, including kickoff fumble recoveries by Lerinezo Robinson and Thomas Crowder.

Ole Miss quarterback Eli Manning, who completed 42 of 56 passes for 414 yards, threw his first touchdown in an SEC game since Sept. 21 against Vanderbilt, but he also committed three turnovers.

The Rebels (5-3, 2-2) missed an opportunity to tie Louisiana State, which lost, 31-7, to Auburn, for the SEC West lead. Louisiana State (6-1, 3-1) leads Auburn (5-3, 3-2) by a half-game and Ole Miss by one game.

Arkansas took a 41-14 lead with eight minutes left in the third quarter. Crowder tipped a bouncing kickoff away from Rebels' return man Ronald McClendon in the end zone and scored.

*

Vanderbilt 28, Connecticut 24 -- Jay Cutler ran for two touchdowns and threw for another for Vanderbilt at Nashville, Tenn.

The Commodores (2-6) ended a five-game losing streak while Connecticut (2-6) dropped its third consecutive game.

Cutler scored the winning touchdown on a seven-yard run with 1:14 remaining as Vanderbilt erased two fourth-quarter deficits.

Safety Jonathan Shaub sealed the victory with an interception with 41 seconds left.

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