12:30 PM ET, October 19, 2002
Sanford Stadium, Athens, GA
ATHENS, Ga. (AP) -- Mark Richt walked into the room with a smile.
"Finally,'' the Georgia coach said, "we got some offense going.''
David Greene passed for 319 yards and accounted for three TDs.
Sure, the opponent was lowly Vanderbilt, but the fifth-ranked Bulldogs weren't complaining after a 48-17 rout Saturday. Everything clicked: David Greene's passing, Musa Smith's running and Terrence Edwards on the receiving end.
"I don't care who you're playing,'' Richt said. "If you don't execute well, you're not going to move the ball downfield and score. We executed well. I'm thankful we did. It was getting very frustrating.''
Frustrating indeed, even though the Bulldogs are the last unbeaten team in the Southeastern Conference.
Georgia (7-0, 4-0 SEC) had been getting by with defense and special teams, winning four games by a total of 16 points. The offense came into Saturday's game ranked 11th in the SEC and 94th nationally in total yards.
That all changed against the worst defensive team in the conference. The Bulldogs piled up 606 yards -- the highest total in nine years and seventh-most in school history.
Greene threw for 319 yards and accounted for three touchdowns. Smith rushed for 102 yards and scored twice. Edwards caught seven passes for 163 yards, including a 65-yard touchdown on a perfectly executed trick play.
"This is what everybody has been waiting for,'' Edwards said. "Hopefully, we'll keep playing like this and get even better.''
The Bulldogs scored on their first eight possessions in their highest-scoring game of the season. They led 31-10 at halftime, piling up more yards in the first two quarters than they had in four previous games.
The performance was especially impressive since Georgia was primed for a letdown, coming off emotional victories over Alabama and Tennessee.
"I'm relieved that we didn't lay an egg,'' Richt said. "I'm relieved that we came out and played hard. And I'm very relieved that the offense started looking like we hoped they would look.''
Vanderbilt (1-6, 0-4) was relieved just to make it to Sanford Stadium. One of the buses carrying players and coaches was involved in a wreck, but no one was seriously hurt.
"We tried not to let it affect us,'' coach Bobby Johnson said. "I don't see that it had much to do with the game.''
The Commodores were simply no match for a Georgia team off to its best start since 1982.
Greene completed his first 11 passes, the streak broken on a drop late in the first half. That was one of the few mistakes by the Bulldogs, who passed and ran at will against the woeful Commodores.
Greene, who was averaging 208 yards per game, had 270 by halftime on 16 of 18 passing. He finished 20-of-23, throwing for two touchdowns and scrambling for an 11-yard score on his final play of the day.
Smith, who had TD runs of 1 and 14 yards, passed 100 yards early in the second half and got the rest of the game off. He wasn't slowed by a jammed neck, which caused temporary numbness in his arms the previous week against Tennessee.
Richt finally broke out some trick plays after conservative play-calling the first six games.
Early in the game, Tony Milton attempted to throw after catching a lateral pass in the backfield. Vandy foiled that bit of chicanery, but got burned on the opening play of the second period.
Greene fooled the Commodores with a play fake, turning his back to the line to hide the ball against his body while the defense converged on Smith. Edwards suddenly took off down the middle of the field, sprinting past safety Jonathan Shaub to haul in the 65-yard touchdown that put Georgia ahead for good.
Greene's first TD was a 35-yard pass to Fred Gibson, who was demoted to second team the previous week because he wasn't giving enough effort.
Gibson began another game on the bench but came in on Georgia's second offensive play. He finished off the drive by faking out cornerback Aaron McWhorter, then catching the pass in the left corner of the end zone.
Gibson wasn't able to finish, going out with an injured left thumb.
Jon Stinchcomb, Georgia's best offensive lineman, also left the game in the first half after hurting his left knee. He will undergo an MRI on Sunday but doesn't think the injury is serious.
D.J. Shockley, who missed the previous month with a broken foot, took over after Greene went out. The redshirt freshman went 7-of-9 for 94 yards and hooked up with Ben Watson on a 9-yard touchdown.
Vandy quarterback Jay Cutler, suspended the previous game after being arrested on campus, scored on a 1-yard run.
Kwane Doster rushed for 118 yards, including a 9-yard touchdown, but it wasn't enough to prevent Vandy from clinching its 20th straight non-winning season.
"Georgia mashed us on offense and defense,'' Johnson said.