Overpowering the country's last unbeaten team, black-clad Georgia took out its frustration at getting passed over for a shot at the BCS championship with a 41-10 rout of Colt Brennan and the Warriors on Tuesday night.
Next Monday, on the very same Superdome field, Ohio State will meet LSU in the national title game. The No. 4 Bulldogs feel they're as deserving as either of those teams, and they'll certainly get no argument from Hawaii, which came to the Big Easy with a perfect record and left all beaten up.
"We're No. 1," Georgia safety Kelin Johnson proclaimed. "We're supposed to be in the national championship game. The nation knows it, everyone knows it."
Added linebacker Marcus Washington as he celebrated on the field: "We're the best in the land. We should be playing next week."
When a powerful offense meets a powerful defense, traditionally the cliche "defense wins championships" is used. That cliche certainly applies here. Knowshon Moreno ran for a pair of touchdowns in the opening quarter and the Bulldogs' defense made life miserable for Brennan, a Heisman Trophy finalist and catalyst for the nation's highest-scoring team. He was sacked eight times, threw three interceptions and lost two fumbles, one of them recovered for a Georgia touchdown.
After getting slammed to the Superdome turf one last time by Geno Atkins, Brennan staggered to the sideline, his night mercifully done. The junior had the worst showing of his career in a game played to the finish, going 22-of-38 for just 169 yards, less than half of his 348-yard average this season.
"This is not how I wanted my career to end," the senior said.