5. Take advantage of Deandre Baker’s absence
The biggest news that did drop, as of Dec. 28, before the Sugar Bowl kicked off came by way of senior Georgia cornerback Deandre Baker missing the game entirely. Georgia is now missing its best cornerback, and potentially best defensive player altogether, for one of its biggest games of the season.
The difficult, but right, thing to do for the Dawgs and the fans is admitting that this is a good and fair decision made by Baker. He’s a bona fide early round 2019 NFL Draft prospect and can now take some time to prepare for the combine coming up next year.
However, the absence of Baker in this game presents a huge opportunity for the Horns. Baker is the best cornerback for Georgia, but the trio that has to takeover at the position now is very young and prone to making mistakes. Redshirt freshman cornerback Eric Stokes is going to be the most experienced, in terms of game action, of all the cornerbacks that head coach Kirby Smart can trot out there.
Facing junior Texas football wide receivers Collin Johnson and Lil’Jordan Humphrey looked to be a daunting task for this Georgia secondary as is. Doing it without the Jim Thorpe Award winner and First-Team All-American Baker is going to make it that much more difficult to deal with. The dynamic duo at wideout for the Horns, that combined for more than 2,000 receiving yards this year, might have a field day in the Sugar Bowl now.