Georgia's Aaron Murray better prepared for this year's Florida game
When Florida and Georgia meet on Saturday, Bulldogs QB Aaron Murray expects to be much more prepared for the hype surrounding the annual rivalry. Murray, the former Tampa Plant standout, admits that last year he might have let his emotions get the best of him early.
“I was definitely very excited,’’ Murray said this week about last year’s game. “Growing up, I wasn’t a big Florida fan, but obviously living in Florida means you are going to watch the Georgia-Florida game. Going from seeing it on TV and then getting in the stadium and being part of it, I definitely had some jitters. I didn’t start off the right the way I wanted to offensively, but we pushed through and had an unbelievable second half. I’ve definitely matured and I understand what the environment is going to be like. I think I’ll be able to handle it better this year.''
Murray was 18-of-37 for 313 yards, and had three interceptions. But he also had three touchdowns and helped the Bulldogs score 24 second half points before Georgia fell to the Gators 34-31.
Georgia coach Mark Richt said for Murray's sake he's tried not to dwell too much of last year's game.
"I think the less said the better,'' Richt said. "We’re trying to focus real hard on not the fact that it’s in Jacksonville, not the fact that it’s even Florida. We’re looking at the team we’re playing as far as their personnel, their scheme. If you are a quarterback, what’s really important? It’s not important if it’s your hometown, it’s not important if it’s in Jacksonville. It’s important to know if there is enough crowd noise that you are going to have to deal with that. It’s important to know what jersey numbers they wear and what positions they play and what types of tendencies they have in the red zone or third down. Those are the things we are focusing on, not so much that it’s Florida, not so much that it’s his home state team. I want him to focus on what’s going to help him win when the ball is snapped. That’s where our conversations are going.”