September 26, 2006

Creatures of the Night

The Georgia Bulldogs (4-0) travel to Oxford, Mississippi
to face with the Ole Miss Rebels (1-3) Saturday night. Kickoff is set for 9:12 p.m.
ET, which would be the latest kickoff in Georgia football history. The previous record was set in 1997 during the Vanderbilt game in Nashville when the game kicked off at 9:09 p.m. ET.


The Georgia Bulldogs are 11-3 in games away from Sanford
Stadium that kickoff after 5:30 p.m. under head coach Mark Richt. Since
the start of the 2004 season, Georgia is 7-1 in late games with their only loss
coming in last year's Sugar Bowl to West Virginia.


Some of the Georgia players prefer the atmosphere and
the added prep time allotted by night games.


"For night games we eat, sleep, and watch film before
the game on Saturday, so we have a lot of extra time to prepare," said
senior safety Tra Battle. "It gets more intense for the night
games because the fan base has more alcohol in them at night games and they
are a little bit more rowdy, so that always adds to the excitement of the game."


Senior linebacker Danny Verdun prefers to get
the game over with early and to have the rest of Saturday off to enjoy.


"If I had to chose I would rather play at one or
two in the afternoon, so we could go over there and get back home" said
Verdun. "When you have late games you have to pass the time before the
game and you sit around, try to sleep, go to meetings, get nervous, and pace
around, but I think night games can be good especially when we are at home."


The team will travel back from Oxford after the game and
they are not expected to return to Athens until 6:30 a.m. Sunday morning. A few
of the players and coaches voiced their concerns about the late return.


"It just throws the whole sleep schedule off completely
getting back at 6:30 Sunday morning, I could not tell you how bad that will
mess up my sleep schedule and I will probably have to sleep all day after church
on Sunday," said junior cornerback Paul Oliver.


On the plus side for the Bulldogs, they will be back
in Sanford Stadium next week for their first home night game when Tennessee
(3-1) rolls into Athens. The Tennessee game will be a 7:45 p.m. ET kickoff on
ESPN.



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