The 2020 Sugar Bowl is almost here. The Georgia Bulldogs and Baylor Bears will meet in New Orleans in the final New Year’s Six bowl of the season. Matt Rhule and the Bears have put forth a great season with an 11-2 record. Both of their losses came to Oklahoma. For Georgia, they are coming off a 37-10 loss to LSU in the SEC Championship. It will be interesting to see how the Bears’ defense plays against Jake Fromm and the Bulldogs’ offense.
2020 Sugar Bowl Preview
Coming into the game, both teams want to end the season on a high note. This is Georgia’s second straight appearance in the Sugar Bowl. Last season, they lost to the Texas Longhorns 28-21. This time around, the Bulldogs are seeking redemption. Fromm has been less than 50% in terms of completion percentage in his last five games. Plus, the Bulldogs were injury prone the last couple of games too. Receiver Lawrence Cager is out for the season. That has been a big loss for Georgia and their passing attack.
Georgia Starters Out
The Bulldogs will be without at least five of their starters for the game. All-Americans Andrew Thomas and J.R. Reed are out. Thomas and right tackle Isaiah Wilson are skipping the Sugar Bowl in preparation for the NFL Draft. Reed is out with a foot injury. Defensive tackle Tyler Clark will miss the game for undisclosed reasons. Tailback Brian Herrien will also miss the game. Running back James Cook, who was arrested earlier this month, will play. The status of starter D’Andre Swift is still uncertain, though. Both Cager and Dominick Blaylock are out for the season with injuries.
How Georgia Can Attack Baylor
The Bulldogs’ offense has been great at times. Other times, not so great. Georgia’s success against Baylor all depends on the accuracy and decision-making of Fromm. Being under 50% in his last five games could become a concern. The future NFL quarterback needs to redeem himself in the Sugar Bowl. The senior has the ability to rush out of the pocket if pressured. Kirby Smart and the coaches should dial up a few rushing plays for Fromm to confuse the Bears’ defensive scheme. To take control, Cook could become a viable part if Swift doesn’t play. The depth at running back may be slim, but Cook has a career ahead of him. Despite the legal issues, Cook can still be a great player.
Then, the receiver outlook is somewhat slim too. Without Cager, Fromm will need to find another target. George Pickens is the leading receiver with 552 yards and seven touchdowns. Look for Fromm to target him a lot during the game.
Baylor Bears Perspective
Bears quarterback Charlie Brewer will be back for the Sugar Bowl. The Baylor signal-caller suffered an injury against Oklahoma in the Big 12 championship game. Baylor can attack Georgia in multiple ways. But it starts with Brewer and his ability to remain consistent in the pocket. The Bears are #7 in the rankings and are eager for a big bowl win.
Rhule has been thrown around in vacant NFL coaching positions as of late. The Bears cannot let this become a distraction during their final preparations. It will be interesting to see how Baylor attacks Georgia early on offense. Brewer has completed 65% of his passes this season. He has passed for 2,950 yards and 20 touchdowns with six interceptions. Denzel Mims leads the Bears in receiving yards with 945 on 61 receptions and 11 touchdowns.
For Baylor to cause an impact early, they must win the line of scrimmage. The Bulldogs will likely play man coverage a lot against Baylor’s receivers. Winning the one-on-one battle from the start could push momentum into the Bears’ favor.
2020 Sugar Bowl Final Thoughts
Georgia is 1-1 against Top-10 teams this season. Their lone win came in Athens against then #7 Notre Dame. The only loss was to LSU in the SEC Championship. Baylor is 0-2 against Top-10 teams. Both losses came to the hands of Oklahoma. This match-up will present great challenges for both teams. Georgia wants redemption from last year. The Bears want a 12th win. This game could be low scoring. Baylor pressures Fromm into throwing unnecessary throws and wins the line of scrimmage battle. Bears win 20-14.