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University of Georgia football by the numbers

The University of Georgia Bulldogs will take on the Alabama Crimson Tide Monday night in a battle for the national championship. 

The game will be played at 7 p.m. Central Standard Time, 8 p.m. Eastern, at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Ahead of the big game, here is a by-the-numbers look at some of the Bulldogs' history.

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>> Georgia Bulldogs prepare for title game

1892: The University of Georgia played its first football game. A month later, the school became part of the South’s oldest college football rivalry when it played Auburn University for the first time.

1920: The Bulldogs officially became the name of the university’s football team, according to official team history.

10: The number of bulldogs who have served as Uga, the official mascot of the UGA football team. Each Uga has descended from Uga I, who sired a line of English bulldogs owned by Sonny Seiler, of Savannah, Georgia. The current mascot, Que, became Uga X in 2015. 

1964: Vince Dooley, UGA’s most winningest coach, was hired as head coach. Dooley coached the team through its 1988 season. 

201: The number of wins Dooley led the team to in his time as coach. 

808: The total number of wins the Bulldogs have amassed in their history.

>> Read more about UGA Football at Dawg Nation

6: The number of SEC championships the Bulldogs achieved under Dooley’s leadership. Dooley had a record of 201-77-10 in his 24 years as Bulldogs head coach.

1980: The year Dooley led the Bulldogs to the national championship.

13: The total number of SEC championships for UGA.

53: The number of bowl games the Bulldogs have played.

2: The number of national championships claimed by the Bulldogs.

92,746: The official capacity of Sanford Stadium in Athens, Georgia, where the Bulldogs play all their home games. 

>> Click here for additional coverage of University of Georgia football

1996: Sanford Stadium hosted the medal round of the 1996 Summer Olympics men’s and women’s soccer competition. 

2016: Current head coach Kirby Smart was hired to lead the Bulldogs. Immediately prior to his hiring at Georgia, Smart served as defensive coordinator for the Crimson Tide.  

4: The number of Georgia coaches in the College Football Hall of Fame. Those coaches are Dooley, Glenn “Pop” Warner, Wally Butts and Jim Donnan.

University of Alabama football by the numbers

The University of Alabama Crimson Tide will take on the Georgia Bulldogs Monday night in a battle for the national championship. 

The game will be played at 7 p.m. Central Standard Time, 8 p.m. Eastern, at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Ahead of the big game, here is a by-the-numbers look at some of the Crimson Tide’s unique history.

>> Read more trending news

1892: The University of Alabama football team, then known as the “Alabama Cadets,” played its first game. The university itself was founded in 1820.

1906: The UA team became known as the “Thin Red Line.” Its famous “Crimson Tide” label came the following year, in 1907, according to the Paul W. Bryant Museum.

1948: After more than 40 years of a rivalry so heated that they refused to play one another, the University of Alabama and Auburn University once again took to the field. The annual Iron Bowl between the two teams is one of the highlights of the year for fans on both sides of the stadium. 

1958: Legendary head coach Paul “Bear” Bryant took the helm of the Crimson Tide. Bryant ultimately coached the team through its 1982 season.

323: The number of wins Bryant racked up at Alabama. At the time of his retirement, he held the record for the most wins by a coach in college football. 

878: The number of official wins the Tide has earned in its history.

14: The number of SEC titles the Tide achieved under Bryant’s leadership. Bryant, known for his trademark houndstooth hat, had a record of 323-85-17 over his 25-year coaching career at the university. 

26: The Tide’s total number of SEC championships.

64: The number of bowl games the Tide has played.

16: The number of national championships the university claims, the most of any school in the SEC, the Bryant Museum said. The team’s most recent national title was in 2015 under current head coach Nick Saban.

101,821: The capacity of Bryant-Denny Stadium at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, where the Tide plays all its home games. 

2007: The year Saban was hired to lead the Tide. Immediately prior to coaching at Alabama, Saban was head coach at Louisiana State University.

2: Bryant and Saban are the only two college football coaches to win SEC championships at two different schools. 

3: The number of Alabama coaches in the College Football Hall of Fame. Besides Bryant, those coaches include Frank Thomas and Eugene Stallings.

>> Click here for more coverage of University of Georgia football

>> Georgia Bulldogs prepare for title game

>> Read about UGA Football at Dawg Nation

Alabama’s Nick Saban has remarkable record against former assistants

Nick Saban’s coaching tree stretches far and wide.

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At Monday’s national championship game in Atlanta, Kirby Smart will be the sixth former assistant to face Saban as the head coach of an opposing team.

Before being named Georgia’s head coach in 2015, Smart spent 10 years on a Saban coaching staff at Alabama, LSU and the Miami Dolphins.

>> Related: Saban admits beating Georgia won’t be easy

In 11 games against former assistants, Saban is a remarkable 11-0. In those games, Saban teams have outscored opponents an outlandish 427-111.

>> Related: The National Championship game: What time, what channel, odds, livestream for Alabama vs. Georgia

The list of pupils includes Derek Dooley (Tennessee), Jim McElwain (Colorado State, Florida), Will Muschamp (Florida), Mark Dantonio (Michigan State), and Jimbo Fisher (Florida State).

Georgia football: The top 5 National Championship Game storylines

The top 5 National Championship Game storylines

Alright, folks. The time for reminiscing on the Rose Bowl has passed (for now). It’s time to focus squarely on what’s next: the National Championship Game against the Alabama Crimson Tide. It seems like we should have more than a week to prepare ourselves for such a monumental matchup, but we get what we get. So let’s waste no more time and get right into it. Here are the top 5 Georgia storylines heading into Atlanta.

>> Read more trending news 

The Teacher vs. The Pupil— Ever since Kirby Smart was hired by Georgia, college football fans have been anticipating the day he met his mentor and former boss, Alabama coach Nick Saban, on the field. But most folks expected that first meeting to come in an SEC Championship Game, not the National Championship Game. And this first — of possibly many — between Smart and Saban also brings with it the opportunity for Smart to achieve something no former Saban assistant has done before: Beat the man they used to call boss.

A potential changing of the guard … or at least a step in that direction — Even if Georgia is able to claim the national title, it will still be the second-best program in the SEC. The four national titles and five SEC titles Saban has won in Tuscaloosa has given the Tide a nice cushion at the top. But considering this is only Smart’s second season at the helm in Athens, the fact it took Saban three seasons to win his first at Bama and the way Smart is recruiting, it’s safe to say the Dawgs have their sights set on becoming the top program in college football.

A chance for Georgia’s seniors to go out on top — One of the most important moments of the 2017 season happened eight months before kickoff against Appalachian State. This season wouldn’t have been possible if Nick Chubb, Sony Michel, Lorenzo Carter and Davin Bellamy bolted for the NFL after their junior season. Between their production on the field and leadership off it, they’re the four most important players on this team. They came back to win something big, so it would be fitting if they left Athens after winning the biggest game there is.

>> Related: Trump plans on attending Georgia-Alabama championship football game

Revenge is a dish best served cold (and dry) — The last time Georgia and Alabama met on the field was on a rainy day at Sanford Stadium in 2015, and the Tide destroyed the Dawgs 38-10. I’m sure there are plenty of members of this Georgia team who haven’t forgotten the misery brought on by both the rain and soul-crushing loss. I sure haven’t. It may be two seasons later, but the National Championship Game will be a chance to serve up some revenge on the biggest possible stage. At the very least it should be dry this time.

Home away from home — The only way to improve the setting of the National Championship Game, from a Georgia perspective, would be to play it in Sanford Stadium. But making the 60-mile trip to Atlanta is a close second. Although it ain’t nearly as close as Athens, Tuscaloosa ain’t too far either, and Alabama will be well-represented. Inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium, it’ll probably be a 50-50 split. But outside it’ll be all Dawg. Every Bulldogs fan in the metro area, and many out of it, are gonna show up to the Benz in hopes of maybe scoring a ticket, or at least being in the vicinity when and if the Dawgs make history.

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Recoup and recover

Between the physicality of the Rose Bowl, the length of the game, the emotion toll of a hard-fought victory and the cross-country flight from California to Georgia, I’ve been a bit worried about how drained Georgia’s players will be by the time Monday rolls around. Count Kirby Smart in that camp as well. From Chip Towers of DawgNation:

“I talked with the players immediately afterward about not burning any more emotion or energy on that game and keep moving on,” Smart said on a College Football Playoff championship teleconference call Tuesday afternoon. “Alabama had a little more sound victory, so they probably didn’t burn quite as much emotion, although I know it was emotional to beat a team that beat them last year. The focus going forward will be on preparing for Alabama and a great program that Coach Saban has got.” …

>> Related: The National Championship game: What time, what channel, odds, livestream for Alabama vs. Georgia

“You emphasize rest, recovery. You emphasize what we talk about all the time, which is getting your sleep, getting your dark hours, getting off your phone,” Smart said. “… We’re starting school this week, too, so that’s another deal on top of our kids that they get to deal with. When you start dealing with a lot of outside influences on your kids’ time, you’ve got to be smart as a coach and understand you’ve got to get the most out of them, but we’ve got to be smart with our practice time and our recovery time.”

A special season

As amazing as Sony Michel and Nick Chubb played as lights out as the defense was in the second half of the Rose Bowl, neither was the ultimate difference in defeating Oklahoma. That would be special teams. Three special teams plays completely changed Georgia’s chances: Tae Crowder’s quick move on the squib kick, Rodrigo Blankenship’s 55-yarder and, of course, Lorenzo Carter’s blocked field goal.

>> Related: Alabama’s Nick Saban admits beating Georgia will be very difficult

But the Dawgs’ special teams prowess wasn’t limited to just the Rose Bowl. Their improvement in that facet of the game over last year is one of the major reasons they find themselves on the cusp of a national championship. From Seth Emerson of DawgNation:

Read more here.

Trump plans on attending Georgia-Alabama championship football game

President Donald Trump is planning to attend the national college football championship game between Georgia and Alabama on Monday in Atlanta, according to three people with direct knowledge of his plans.

>> Read more trending news 

Nick Ayers, a Georgia native who is Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff, and his wife Jamie Ayers will host the Trumps. First Lady Melania Trump is also expected to attend the game, which will be held at Mercedes-Benz Stadium under stepped-up security.

It’s not immediately certain whether two other top Trump allies in Georgia – Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and U.S. Sen. David Perdue – will join them.

Trump and his aides have focused their attention on the college football playoffs even as he continues a war of words with the NFL over players who protest social injustice during the national anthem.

>> Related: Who is Mary Beth Smart, Georgia football coach Kirby Smart’s wife?

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders opened her press briefing Tuesday by congratulating the SEC schools “from two great states, both in the heart of Trump country” for bowl victories that propelled them to the championship.

Trump carried both states in 2016 – Alabama by nearly 30 points and Georgia by about five. But Alabama voters dealt Trump a blow in December by electing Democrat Doug Jones to the U.S. Senate over Republican Roy Moore, who Trump endorsed.

When pressed on Moore’s defeat, Sanders said she was simply trying to congratulate “two great football teams in the greatest conference in the country.”

>> Related: Nick Saban on wife Terry: ‘I don’t know why she puts up with me, but I’m very fortunate’

As the room erupted into laughter, she added: “Which I’m sure that most of you will all agree, even those that don’t live in one of those lucky states.”

Nick Saban on wife Terry: ‘I don’t know why she puts up with me, but I’m very fortunate’

As soon as he finished his postgame news conference after a Mississippi State game last year, Alabama coach Nick Saban made a beeline to the most important person in his life.

>> Read more trending news 

It was brief, but Saban and his wife, Terry, shared a kiss and a couple of words before the coach darted from the room to rejoin the team.

Terry attends Saban’s news conferences on the road. If you’re close enough, you can hear her quietly cheering when Nick makes a point she agrees with.

Saban said he appreciates the support she’s given him through the years.

“Well, I think that’s the thing you have to have appreciation for,” Saban said. “Sometimes when — you probably don’t even know what an old, rusted-out Volkswagen is, like 19-whatever that would have been — 60s — and go through the struggles you go through, personally and professionally. And to have a partner that has been supportive and an asset to the organization in every way is something that is really appreciated.

>> Related: Saban has a remarkable record against former assistants

“She’s been a great partner. I don’t know why she puts up with me, but I’m very fortunate.”

>> Related: Who is Mary Beth Smart, Georgia football coach Kirby Smart’s wife?

The Alabama Crimson Tide take on the Georgia Bull Dogs in the NCAA Championship Monday night at Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

Who is Mary Beth Smart, Georgia football coach Kirby Smart’s wife?

The first lady of Georgia football is a Bulldog star herself.

>> Read more trending news 

Mary Beth Smart, wife of head coach Kirby Smart, was a star player on the Lady Bulldogs in the early 2000s. Her name still resides on the annals of Georgia women’s basketball. 

A full profile of the former Mary Beth Lycett appeared in DawgNation. Here are some highlights:

• Mary Beth Lycett was an exceptional basketball player. She was named Miss Georgia Basketball her senior year at Morrow High and played for Andy Landers’ Lady Bulldogs from 1999-2003.

>> Related: Saban has a remarkable record against former assistants AJC Sports

• She started 41 of 51 games over her final two seasons in Athens. She remains listed among Georgia’s all-time leaders in 3-point shooting percentage, free throw percentage and minutes played.

• Mary Beth and Kirby did not attend UGA at the same time. She is is 5 1/2 years younger than him. They met when he returned to Georgia to work for Mark Richt as running backs coach in 2005. Mary Beth was working in the athletic association’s business office at the time and he had to call her to arrange his travel to Athens for the interview.

• Mary Beth and Kirby started dating in 2005 and were married in Athens in summer 2006 at St. James United Methodist Church.

• She is an avid tennis player. She ran the Chicago Marathon in 2014.

• Kirby and Mary Beth Smart have three children, twins Julia and Weston (born in 2007) and their youngest son, Andrew. 

>> Related: Georgia football: The top 5 National Championship Game storylines

• Following Kirby’s hire as Georgia football coach in 2015, the Smarts moved into a 1920s cottage on a three-acre lot a few miles from Athens.

Suite deal? Someone’s selling a national title game ticket for $94K

A thrilling, historic double-overtime victory against Oklahoma has the University of Georgia headed to meet Alabama for the national title Monday at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

>> Read more trending news

Someone’s betting that a diehard fan is willing to pay $94,000 to be there.

Stubhub, the site where people can resell event tickets, has many tickets for sale – but the “cheap seats” start just under $2,100

One eye-popping offering, though, is approaching six figures. A little research finds we’re actually talking about a suite (although it’s officially listed as “one ticket”), but still. That’s a pricey night out. 

Bargain hunters, on the other hand, can try Vivid Seats, where tickets start at a mere $1,854.

Alabama fan attends game after RV catches fire. Her reaction? 'Roll, Tide'

Alabama football fans are passionate about their team. One Crimson Tide fan had to make a choice before Monday’s national semifinal game when her recreational vehicle caught fire near the Superdome: Stay with the vehicle, or attend the game?

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You know the answer: She attended the game and was not disappointed as Alabama defeated top-ranked Clemson 24-6 in the Sugar Bowl to earn a spot in Monday’s College Football Playoff National Championship Game in Atlanta.

Police said the RV caught fire around 11 a.m., WVUE reported. The blaze temporarily closed traffic in the area, but the New Orleans Fire Department quickly extinguished it, WVUE reported. No one was injured, police said.

The fan did not want to be identified, but did comment about the incident, WVUE reported.

“Roll, Tide,” she said.

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