Thoughts on UGA's 2014 schedule

The SEC released its 2014 football schedules on Wednesday. Here are a couple of quick observations about Georgia’s:

1. Still no Alabama. I wondered whether this might be the year Alabama would return to Georgia’s schedule. Still not to be. Georgia’s two cross-divisional conference games will be at Arkansas on Oct. 18 and at home against Auburn on Nov. 15. UGA athletic director Greg McGarity said this week that the league could come up with a regular rotating schedule for league games in the near future, much like what existed in the past prior to the most recent conference expansion.

2. Placement of the bye weeks: Georgia’s two open dates will be very well-placed. The Bulldogs open the season at home against Clemson on Aug. 30 and then will enjoy a week off before visiting South Carolina on Sept. 13. Later in the season, they have two back-to-back lengthy road trips to Missouri (Oct. 11) and Arkansas (Oct. 18) before an open date. The opponent coming out of the bye? Florida on Nov. 1 in Jacksonville.

3. Another long home drought: Local retailers and restaurateurs have complained in the past when Georgia’s schedule bunched up home and away games. Such will be the case next fall. Georgia will play at home four times between the opener with Clemson and the Oct. 4 game against Vanderbilt (the two middle home games are Troy on Sept. 20 and Tennessee on Sept. 27). After Oct. 4, the Bulldogs will not play at home again until Auburn visits on Nov. 15 -- a six-week gap between home dates.

4. Solid home schedule: Overall it will be the best home ticket for Georgia in many years, though. Longtime rivalry matchups against Clemson, Tennessee, Auburn and Georgia Tech among the seven home games? McGarity and company shouldn’t have much difficulty selling those.


Aug. 30 Clemson

Sept. 6 Open

Sept. 13 at South Carolina

Sept. 20 Troy

Sept. 27 Tennessee

Oct. 4 Vanderbilt

Oct. 11 at Missouri

Oct. 18 at Arkansas

Oct. 25 Open

Nov. 1 Florida (Jacksonville)

Nov. 8 at Kentucky

Nov. 15 Auburn

Nov. 22 Charleston Southern

Nov. 29 Georgia Tech