The Georgia Bulldogs are 4-1 on the season and are still in control of their own destiny to reach Atlanta for another SEC Championship game. Over the last few weeks they have looked sharp and have overcome some tough opponents to be where they are now.
But after the season-opening loss to Clemson there were many fans who were worried about the play of their senior quarterback Aaron Murray. Both fans and critics were not restraining from letting us know just how overrated Murray is as a quarterback, often times highlighting his track record against top tier teams.
But after the loss to Clemson Murray has led his team to victories over two Top 10 teams, defeating both South Carolina and LSU in the first few weeks of the season.
Murray is simply one of the toughest players to judge in all of football. One week he will light up the scoreboard and defeat a great team and the next week he will make that one error that costs Georgia the game.
But still, something tells me that there is so much more than what meets the eye for Murray. His track record has been brought up many times and it is true, in the past he has struggled mightily against top tier teams.
But at the same time he has taken Georgia to two SEC championship games in his career and is on his way to leading them there for a third time. However, it is safe to say that if he gets the Bulldogs there for a third time he really does need to pull out the victory otherwise he will always be remembered as the guy who simply couldn’t get it done.
Personally, I have also been very critical of Murray over the past couple of years. Coming into the season I stated that Murray wasn’t good enough to get the win over teams like LSU and Alabama but that you could count on him to rack up 500 yards on teams like Kentucky and Vanderbilt.
But I will say that I have been watching him over the last four games and I have been impressed.
To start, he was very impressive in both wins over South Carolina and LSU, two opponents who were both ranked 6th in the country when they visited the Bulldogs. I thought that it was very extraordinary for Murray to respond to his critics about his track record against top teams by defeating both South Carolina and LSU.
But on top of that I must say that Murray has impressed me with his sheer desire to compete and lead his team to victory.
For anyone that was watching this past Saturday when Georgia narrowly escaped Tennessee with a victory, they would have seen a quarterback that had to pull one out of the hat and help lead his team.
Georgia has been beaten up by injuries all season long, and by the time that Murray went on his game-tying touchdown drive with five seconds left in the game he had a group of guys that were mostly at the bottom of the depth chart when the season started.
Three of Georgia’s top four wide receivers are injured this season, along with both of the Bulldogs running backs. Meaning that during that drive five of Georgia’s six offensive playmakers were not on the field, yet Georgia’s number 11 still got the job done.
I don’t think that Murray is the best quarterback in the country nor do I believe that he will be a star in the NFL, but I do believe that he is good enough to lead his team to a national title. It will be tough, but I think that Murray has been proving to both his critics and to himself that he is capable of winning the big game — now it’s just a matter of doing it.
Tyler Rollason is a Winder-Barrow High School graduate and mass communications major at the University of West Georgia. He writes a weekly sports column for the Barrow Journal. You can e-mail comments about this column to