Memories fresh for Bulldogs
ATHENS, Ga. - A.J. Green was watching the game on television, still a few months away from enrolling at Georgia. He knew the Bulldogs had it when Matthew Stafford let go of the pass.
Mikey Henderson got a step on the Alabama defender. The ball arrived just in the nick of time.
"I was watching at my house," said Green, now a freshman receiver for the Bulldogs. "That was a crazy game. It was fun, though. When they put Mikey out there, I said, 'Throw the fade to him. He's going to outrun them anyway.' As soon as Stafford threw it, I knew it was going to be a touchdown."
That was a year ago. The Bulldogs turned their season around with the overtime win in Tuscaloosa, Ala., going on to finish No. 2 in the nation. Alabama took a turn for the worse, barely nudging above .500 by the time 2007 was done.
Today, these Southeastern Conference powerhouses will get together for another of their infrequent meetings, and the stakes couldn't be much higher.
For No. 3 Georgia, it's a chance to justify its place as a national championship contender. For the eighth-ranked Crimson Tide, it's a chance to show coach Nick Saban has stirred the ghost of the Bear after last year's tantalizing tease.
"These are the kind of games that you should come to a place like the University of Alabama to play in," Saban said.
Georgia (4-0, 1-0 Southeastern Conference) opened the season No. 1 but slipped a couple of spots, the voters not impressed with a win over outmanned Georgia Southern and a squeaker against South Carolina. But the Bulldogs always knew their schedule - one of the nation's toughest with remaining games against five top 25 teams - would ensure they got their proper due.
It might happen this week. Top-ranked Southern California's shocking loss at Oregon State gives the Bulldogs a chance to leap back to No. 1 with an impressive showing against the Tide.
"They've got a ton of momentum, and I feel like we do, too," said Stafford, the SEC's top-rated passer ."It's going to be fun."