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Vanderbilt 31, Georgia 27

The SportsXchange

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Any thoughts Georgia had of returning to the SEC title game for a third straight year probably received a fatal blow on Saturday when Vanderbilt scored one play after a fumbled snap on a punt with under three minutes left to upset the 15th-ranked Bulldogs, 31-27.

The Bulldogs led, 27-24, but imploded when punter Collin Barber dropped the football, which the Commodores recovered at the 15-yard line.

From there, all it took was one run by Jerron Seymour, who scored on the first play for Vanderbilt, which scored 17 unanswered points in the fourth quarter, with 2:53 to play.

The Commodores recovered Brendan Douglas' fumble with 2:11 to play ended whatever chances the Bulldogs had of a comeback.

Georgia fell to 4-3, 3-2 in the SEC, while Vanderbilt went to 4-3, 1-3.

The Bulldogs led, 24-14, at halftime, but neither team was able to mount much offense in the third quarter other than a 23-yard field goal by Marshall to extend the margin to 27-14.

But this game was far from over.

The Commodores cut the lead to 27-21 with 10:38 to play on a two-yard touchdown run by backup quarterback Patton Robinette, who replaced injured starter Austin Carta-Samuels in the second quarter.

Later, the Commodores drew within three points with a little more than five minutes to play on a 40-yard field goal by Casey Spears before the fumble by Barber and touchdown by Seymour decided the outcome.

The first half featured a little bit of everything, but not all of it good.

For Georgia, losing defensive end Ray Drew for the rest of the game to the NCAA's new targeting rule and starting safety Josh Harvey-Clemons to an ankle injury were two blows the Bulldogs could ill afford in light of all their injury problems.

But even that paled to what happened later in the first quarter, when the Commodores lost starting quarterback Austyn Carta-Samuels for the rest of the game after he sustained an apparent leg injury on a sack by Jordan Jenkins.

Carta-Samuels was already feeling some pain.

On Vanderbilt's previous possession, the Commodores held a 14-10 lead before Bulldog cornerback Shaq Wiggins returned an interception 39 yards for a Georgia touchdown.

The Bulldogs extended the margin to 24-14 with 27 seconds left in the half on a two-yard scoring run by quarterback Aaron Murray, his second rushing score of the game.

Vanderbilt was feeling pretty frisky early on.

Trailing, 10-7, the Commodores faked a field goal and kicker Casey Spear took the snap and ran three yards for a touchdown and a 14-10 lead.

NOTES: Aaron Murray set the SEC record for career total offense on a seven-yard pass to tight end Arthur Lynch, enabling him to surpass former Florida great Tim Tebow, who held the old mark of 12,232 yards. ... The pick-6 by Shaq Wiggins was the first interception of his career. ... Saturday's game marked the first appearance for Vanderbilt on CBS in 12 years.
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