Alabama football fans have rightfully complained the Georgia Bulldogs have had easier schedules than the Crimson Tide. In the upcoming 2023 season, Georgia has its wheels greased on a path to a three-peat. On the 2023 schedule, CBS Sports seems to agree.
Before delving into the strength or weaknesses of 2023 SEC schedules, Alabama football fans don’t need to overreact. Yes, Georgia had an easy path to the Playoff last season. But the Bulldogs were college football’s best team. They were also the best in the 2021 season as well. So when Alabama football and other SEC football fans complain about Georgia’s schedules, it can come across as whining. Better to congratulate the Dawgs and move on.
The moving on gets bumpy quickly when looking at 2023 schedules. By any reasonable measurement, the Bulldogs’ 2023 schedule is a joke. No accusations are being made here that maybe the SEC did the Dawgs a favor in hopes of college football’s first-ever three-peat in the Poll Era.
But if Georgia somehow fails to make it to Atlanta, it will be an epic failure.
Based on the most recent of numerous 2023 preseason rankings, provided by ProFootballFocus(PFF), the Georgia Bulldogs play one top-10 team in the regular season. Alabama plays the same team, No. 9 Tennessee. Alabama Football plays three top-10 teams. Along with Tennessee, Alabama plays No. 5 Texas and No. 8 LSU.
Alabama also plays No. 18 Arkansas, No. 19 Kentucky and No. 23 Mississippi State. Georgia’s other preseason-ranked opponents are Kentucky and No. 22 South Carolina. In the first eight weeks of the college football season, the Bulldogs leave the state of Georgia twice. Those road games are against SEC lightweights, Auburn and Vanderbilt.
According to CBS, the Alabama Crimson Tide does not have the SEC’s toughest schedule. The Crimson Tide is at No. 4. The three toughest SEC schedules belong to the Florida Gators, Ole Miss Rebels and South Carolina Gamecocks. Ole Miss has the misfortune of having to play Alabama, LSU and Georgia.
Also according to CBS, the easiest 2023 SEC schedule belongs to the Georgia Bulldogs. The CBS schedule rankings from toughest to easiest are listed below.
- Florida Gators
- Ole Miss Rebels
- South Carolina Gamecocks
- Alabama Crimson Tide
- Auburn Tigers
- Tennessee Vols
- Missouri Tigers
- LSU Bengal Tigers
- Kentucky Wildcats
- Arkansas Razorbacks
- Texas A&M Aggies
- Vanderbilt Commodores
- Mississippi State Bulldogs
- Georgia Bulldogs
Complaining about Georgia’s 2023 schedule is fair. The Dawgs will play what will likely be a tough game in Knoxville. If they beat Tennessee, their entry into the Playoffs should be a lock. Even a blowout loss in the SEC Championship game would not knock UGA out of the Playoff.
By comparison, Alabama’s tougher schedule probably means a loss. Unlike Georgia, a one-loss Alabama would need to win the SEC Championship game to advance.
Maybe the 2023 SEC regular season will play out differently. Or maybe, the Georgia Bulldogs have close to an unfair advantage.