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#pounditSunday, April 21, 2024

Kirby Smart made brilliant coaching move with clutch timeout

Kirby Smart calls timeout

You might be able to sneak things past some people, but not Kirby Smart.

The Georgia Bulldogs coach showed on Saturday one of the reasons why he has turned his program into a national powerhouse. Not only is he an excellent recruiter and defensive wizard, but he is plugged-in on gameday and can make some great in-game moves.

Take for instance what he did in the fourth quarter of the College Football Playoff semifinal against Ohio State.

Ohio State was leading 38-27 and had a 4th-and-1 at their 34 with just under nine minutes left. Buckeyes coach Ryan Day called for a fake punt that looked like it would work, which would have been a game-changing play. But the play was called off because Smart recognized a fake was coming and called a timeout just before the snap.

Here is another look at the play:

Had Smart not called a timeout, Ohio State would have had a first down and momentum. They could have continued to milk the clock and they might have added more points. Instead, the Buckeyes punted, and Georgia responded with a 76-yard touchdown on the next play to make it 38-35.

Without that timeout, Georgia probably doesn’t come back to win the game.

Those watching were able to recognize what a huge decision that was from Smart.


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