ATHENS -- Fifth-ranked Georgia moved one day closer to its Saturday showdown with sixth-ranked South Carolina.
Georgia (5-0, 3-0 SEC) conducted a two-hour practice Wednesday, and afterwards Bulldog coach Mark Richt said the physical part of practicing for the week is over. Earlier in the day, it was announced that redshirt sophomore wide receiver Michael Bennett would be out for the remainder of the season after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his right knee during Tuesday's practice. Currently, Bennett leads the team with 24 catches for 345 yards and four touchdowns.
"First of all, Michael getting hurt was a very said thing," said Richt. "I was thinking we had quite a good practice and then on the very last play he gothurt. The good news for Michael is that he's a sophomore and has two more years to go. He will be back full speed by next season. I think it happened to (USC tailback Marcus) Lattimore about this time last season, and he's recovered. However, now we have to play the rest of the season without Michael, and it's an opportunity for the other guys.
"I think we'll be fine, but we're losing a guy that helped the toughness of that unit," Richt added. "Michael blocked well; he caught the tough passes; he practiced hard, and not to say the other guys aren't, he just was a big part of the team."
The Bulldogs lead the SEC in scoring at 48.2 points a game while the Gamecocks rank second in scoring defense at just 11.2 points a game. Georgia has scored 32touchdowns this season while the Gamecocks have surrendered just five. South Carolina's offense is averaging 36.6 points a game, which ranks sixth in the league.
Saturday's game in Columbia will be televised live nationally on ESPN with the kickoff slated for 7 p.m. It will be first time in the series history that both teams are ranked in the top 10, and the teams first met in 1894. Georgia leads the all-time series 46-16-2 including 19-8-2 in Columbia. The Gamecocks (5-0, 3-0 SEC) have won the past two meetings.
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