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Are Georgia football and Ohio State inevitable? Why you can’t ignore a few underdogs

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Are Georgia football and Ohio State inevitable? Why you can’t ignore a few underdogs


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  • Georgia football doesn’t present as having much weakness, but Bulldogs’ schedule is loaded with Texas, Alabama, Ole Miss and Tennessee.
  • Ohio State boasts an impressive roster, but Buckeyes will transition to new starting quarterback Will Howard.
  • Will Georgia even win the SEC? Texas’ arrival makes the conference even tougher.

Either Georgia or Ohio State will be preseason No. 1. But just how heavily are those teams favored to win the national championship?

The SEC will be even more of a juggernaut than usual, following the arrival of Texas and Oklahoma. Georgia’s schedule will include games against Clemson, Texas, Alabama, Ole Miss and Tennessee. That’s a rugged road before the playoff arrives. Ohio State is loaded but will transition to a new starting quarterback.

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On this edition of “SEC Football Unfiltered,” a podcast from the USA TODAY Network, hosts Blake Toppmeyer and John Adams consider this question: If you were predicting the national champion and could either take Georgia and Ohio State or the field, which would you choose?

It’s a tough question, because Georgia and Ohio State are deserving frontrunners, but navigating a 12-team playoff presents more potential pitfalls.

TOPPMEYER: Why 12-team College Football Playoff is blessing, curse for Tennessee, Florida, LSU

ADAMS: Looking for a college football dark horse? I’ve got one.

Here’s the analysis:

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Toppmeyer: I’d take Georgia and Ohio State. Although I think as many as about 30 teams could be considered preseason playoff hopefuls, I only consider six to be serious national championship contenders: Georgia, Ohio State, Texas, Oregon, Ole Miss and Alabama. My top three champion picks would be Georgia, Texas and Ohio State. So, if you’re giving me two of those three, I’m taking that duo over the field. Georgia lacks an obvious weakness. Ohio State will have a new quarterback, but starter Will Howard previously played well for Kansas State. If the Buckeyes are hitting their stride behind Howard come postseason, they’re plenty loaded elsewhere. I’d feel more confident in this pick if I could have Georgia and Texas rather than Georgia and Ohio State, but as long as I’m getting Georgia and another top-tier team, I’m taking that over the field.

[ WANT MORE OPINIONS FROM TOPPMEYER AND ADAMS? Sign up for the SEC Unfiltered newsletter for exclusive columns delivered straight to your inbox ]

Adams: Give me the field. Georgia is really good, and quarterback Carson Beck will be a Heisman Trophy contender. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Bulldogs won a national championship. But, I don’t think this is Kirby Smart’s best squad, and there are other teams I like from the SEC, too, like Ole Miss and Texas. Ohio State doesn’t sweeten the pot enough. I don’t trust Ryan Day to navigate a 12-team playoff, and I’m made more skeptical of the Buckeyes because of the quarterback transition.

Later in the episode

– A look at John Calipari’s quest to build an NCAA Tournament roster in Year 1 at Arkansas. Calipari is considering an unusual strategy as he approaches this season.

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Where to listen to SEC Football Unfiltered

Apple

Spotify

iHeart

Google

Blake Toppmeyer is the USA TODAY Network’s SEC Columnist. John Adams is the senior sports columnist for the Knoxville News Sentinel. Subscribe to the SEC Football Unfiltered podcast, and check out the SEC Unfiltered newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox.

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Georgia

How Georgia aims to become the Silicon Valley of the South

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How Georgia aims to become the Silicon Valley of the South


AUGUSTA, Ga. – Semiconductor production is booming across the nation, including right here in Georgia.

Semiconductors power nearly every piece of technology you interact with throughout the day.

Sens. Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock recently announced $75 million in funding to strengthen semiconductor production in the state.

It’s part of legislation dedicated to rebuilding America’s place as a global manufacturer.

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“This is going to be part of the industry of the future,” said Heather Boushey, chief economist for President Joe Biden’s Invest in America Cabinet.

That future is already here. Most Americans do not need to understand the science behind semiconductors. They just know they power everything from phones to computers to the ability to read this story.

“From smartphones to automobiles to washing machines, chips are all around us,” Warnock told a crowd gathered at Absolics in Covington on Friday.

The gathering included city and county leaders, Warnock and Ossoff, and Korean business partners from Absolics parent company SKC.

“We have allowed strategic, advanced manufacturing to whither in this country,” Ossoff said, which is why the $75 million infusion, part of the 2022 CHIPS and Science Act, is a big deal.

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More than a thousand people will be biking into Thomson on Friday for Bicycle Across Georgia.

In 1990, the United States produced 37% of all semiconductors. Now, it’s at 10%, a fraction of what economic rival China produces.

“In 2021, when inflation spiked, we now know that one-third of that was because of semiconductor shortages,” Boushey said.

Remember when cars were impossible to find during the pandemic? It was because of a semiconductor chip shortage.

“That puts the American economy and our national security at risk,” Boushey said.

Georgia Senator Jon Ossoff

Over $50 billion has been dedicated to reigniting the semiconductor industry and its supply chain.

Ossoff and Warnock see Georgia as a crucial player.

“It’s good to see Georgians not only help to decide the direction of our nation’s future but to be doing the work to make it possible,” Warnock said.

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And as the chip industry continues to boom, Georgia has its eye on becoming the “Silicon Valley of the South.”

“All of this is the product of sound economic and national security policy,” Ossoff said.



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In Georgia, an Animal Shelter Worries It's Become a 'Foreign Agent'

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In Georgia, an Animal Shelter Worries It's Become a 'Foreign Agent'


By Felix Light TBILISI (Reuters) – For more than a decade, Sara Kemecsei’s animal shelter has cared for the stray dogs of the Georgian capital. By soliciting small donations of $5 or $10 apiece, mostly from abroad, she offers shelter and finds new homes for some of an estimated 500,000 neglected …



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