Former Alabama quarterback and current ESPN host Greg McElroy acknowledged on the May 2 episode of “Always College Football” that Georgia has a talent advantage over the Crimson Tide and the rest of college football.
“Let’s start with the fact that Georgia, right now, is the standard of college football,” McElroy said. “That is not some secret. That is not some hypothesis. This is fact. They’ve won consecutive national championships. They are — right now, based on preseason prognostications — favored by many to win three in a row. When you look at Georgia over the last couple of years, they have done a remarkable job of replenishing talent.”
McElroy lauded head coach Kirby Smart and the rest of the Bulldogs’ coaching staff for being able to recover from the NFL’s raids on Georgia’s rosters. In the 2022 and 2023 drafts alone, 25 Georgia players were picked, including a record-high 15 this year.
“Many people, self included, had question marks going into last year,” McElroy said. “Would they be able to replicate the success of the year before? Not only did they do that, [but] in many ways, last year’s team was maybe even a lit bit better across the board at times than they were in 2021 — when they won the first championship under Kirby Smart.”
Greg McElroy Said Georgia Is ‘the Standard’
McElroy continued to tell fans of his alma mater that it is now Georgia that runs the world of college football, not Alabama.
“They’re the standard,” McElroy said of the Bulldogs. “They’re No. 1 right now. There’s no denying that.”
The 2010 BCS National Champion Crimson Tide quarterback did give a message of hope to Alabama fans — and fans of teams like LSU, Florida State and Ohio State, some of which are popular picks to be College Football Playoff teams in 2023.
“There’s no reason to try to pretend to the gap doesn’t exist. There is a little bit of a gap right now,” McElroy said. “But all that can change this upcoming year because you’re only as good as your last game.”
Alabama & Georgia Had Most 2023 NFL Draft picks
Tied with 10 NFL draft picks in 2023, Alabama and Georgia led the SEC in a typically dominant fashion for the conference when it comes to getting players getting paid.
247Sports’ Brad Crawford noted that even with Alabama leading the sport in drafted NFL prospects, it was a “down year” for the program during the 2022 season.
“Alabama often leads the country in NFL draft selections and boasts more first-round picks during Nick Saban’s tenure than any program over that stretch,” Crawford said, adding, “However, the Crimson Tide underachieved last season — by program standards — in failing to reach the College Football Playoff when you consider the wealth of roster talent.”
Crawford was in awe of Smart, though, and said that the team was gunning for a three-peat in 2023 — something that he hadn’t said about Nick Saban’s Crimson Tide.
“No wonder Georgia recruits at alarmingly high levels,” Crawford said, adding, “The Bulldogs get players paid. Kirby Smart churns out premier talent between the hedges and is gunning for his third consecutive national championship.”