Georgia's Kirby Smart discusses program's 'disease' after Sugar Bowl victory

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Georgia football coach Kirby Smart pumped the brakes on the hype train Wednesday night following the Bulldogs’ Sugar Bowl win over Baylor.

Georgia won the game, 26-14, behind a great performance from freshman wide receiver George Pickens. However, when assessing his team, he tempered the hype and said the future was bright only if the team continues to work on it and doesn’t get lost in the media.

“To be honest with you, the future is only bright if those guys continue to work because there's a disease that creeps in at Georgia where kids believe they're better than they are and they read their own press clippings,” Smart said.

Smart said the team chaplain talked about something similar before the game.

“He basically said that when you start reading about yourself and believing your own press clippings is when you start to fall,” Smart said. “Those kids that you just mentioned are tremendous players. But they'll only be as good as they can be if they stay as hungry as they are. When they're not hungry, you become average. Some of that, I think, has affected us in the past.

“We've got to find a way in this program to not let that creep in and [to] keep that same hunger you had as a young player. Because we've had it happen to several guys that were really hungry and then they become full.”


Georgia finishes the year 12-2 and runner-ups to the SEC champion LSU Tigers. The Bulldogs narrowly missed having a College Football Playoff berth but losses to the Tigers and South Carolina nixed that.

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