The dreaded “trap game,” a term used in sports describing a game that could be overlooked on a team’s schedule. During the 2019 college football season, programs have to be careful of teams that could be more talented than their record shows.
In reality, these are actually well-coached, talented teams that may have a tough schedule or just don’t garner the amount of attention that large-scale contenders like Alabama and Clemson get.
With the 2019 Georgia football season growing closer, it’s time to take a look at a couple of potential “trap games” on a busy Bulldog schedule.
Last year the Kentucky Wildcats were a team that experts picked to finish in the bottom three in the SEC East, but by the end of the season Kentucky was runner-up in the SEC East. Head Coach Mark Stoops has built a strong young program at Kentucky, developing players like Josh Allen — the star defensive player for the Wildcats who was a first-round pick in this year’s draft.
This season, Georgia will host Kentucky on Oct. 19, the week after they host rival South Carolina and the week before its bye week. There are several reasons Georgia should be careful in preparations for the Wildcats.
First, they will be coming off an extremely physical game with South Carolina, a team that always plays Georgia with passion and physicality. Fatigue and injuries could plague the Bulldogs and hinder rotations on both offense and defense.
Also, Georgia could catch catch themselves looking forward to the bye week for rest and to begin preparations for the Florida game. Therefore, the Bulldogs must be mentally and physically prepared on Oct. 19, in Athens.
The other game that stands out as a possible trap game on Georgia’s 2019 football schedule is the Nov. 23 matchup against the Texas A&M Aggies.
In his second year as head coach, Jimbo Fisher will be tasked with an extremely tough schedule after achieving a nine-win season in 2018. Prior to facing off against Georgia in Athens, the Aggies will play against reigning National Champions, Clemson, and the runner-up, Alabama. Sprinkle in a couple tough SEC games and Texas A&M could have quite a few losses when they come to town. Their record or ranking could overshadow just how talented and dangerous the Aggies are on both sides of the ball.
Texas A&M ranked fourth in the SEC in total offense and eighth in total defense in 2018. They were a young team that lost to Clemson by two points, while beating the No. 6 ranked LSU in a seven overtime offensive shootout.
They also have Kellen Mond, a dual-threat quarterback and the self-proclaimed best quarterback in the SEC. Quarterbacks who are equally menacing both in the pocket and outside of it are often difficult to prepare for, and Mond is one of those players.
Come Week 13 of the college football season, injuries could start to pile up, Georgia could have one eye looking forward to a potential SEC Championship and College Football Playoff berth and the Aggies visit to Athens could be downplayed.