Thirty minutes of dominating football was enough for Georgia to coast to a 63-16 victory over New Mexico State.
It was the seventh consecutive victory for the Bulldogs, who used five second-quarter touchdown passes from Aaron Murray to jump out to a 49-3 halftime lead before most of the offensive starters were rested in the second half.
The five touchdown passes is a new Georgia record for touchdown throws in a quarter, and all five were to different receivers.
“It’s been like that all year for us,” said Murray, who ended the day 18-for-23 for 238 yards. “We’ve had guys stepping up and make catches. Coach Bobo’s done a great job of calling plays that allow me to use the whole field.”
In fact, nine different players scored touchdowns for the Bulldogs (7-2, 5-1 SEC). Two of them, Brandon Boykin and Branden Smith, are normally starring on the other side of the ball as defensive backs.
“It wasn’t all me,” Smith said of his 56-yard dash that opened the scoring. “The whole line did an awesome job of blocking. They opened it up for me. I just used my speed.”
It was the first time Georgia topped the 60-point mark since 2004, when they scored 62 against Kentucky.
Missing four tailbacks due to injury or suspension, the Bulldogs were drastically understaffed behind the quarterback. The brunt of the rushing duties fell to 5′6″ Brandon Harton, who had run for just 33 yards this season prior to this game. The redshirt sophomore made the most of his starting debut, racking up 99 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries.
“It was everything I could have hoped for, just making positive plays and contributing to a win, and helping my team whenever I could,” Harton said.
New Mexico State (3-6), didn’t have much to cheer about during the game. Running back Kenny Turner was a one-man show, totalling 221 all-purpose yards and scoring the Aggies’ two fourth-quarter touchdowns.
The game was a good warm-up for the Bulldogs’ next game, a home showdown against the Auburn Tigers next Saturday. Georgia is tied with South Carolina for first in the SEC East but must finish with a better record to win a chance at the SEC title as the Gamecocks hold the tiebreaker between the teams.