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PREVIEW: Georgia not taking Appalachian State lightly

Georgia receiver Rantavious Wooten and the Bulldogs got a huge win last week against Florida but can’t look past Appalachian State. (Reuters)

Georgia receiver Rantavious Wooten and the Bulldogs got a huge win last week against Florida but can’t look past Appalachian State. (Reuters)

ATHENS — A big win over rival Florida kept Georgia alive in the SEC East division race.

The Bulldogs (5-3, 4-2 SEC) have now turned their attention to today’s nonconference matchup at home against Appalachian State.

“You can’t look past any game,” Georgia receiver Michael Bennett said. “That North Texas game we didn’t play as good as we could have, and hopefully we’ll jump up on App State and not let up.”

Georgia can use the game to get Bennett and running back Todd Gurley back in the flow of the offense before closing out league play with games at Auburn and at home against Kentucky. Both played big factors Georgia’s 23-20 win over Florida. Bennett had a team-high 59 yards receiving on five catches, while Gurley accounted for 187 yards and scored two TDs.

Georgia coach Mark Richt said he expects Gurley, coming off a sprained ankle that sidelined him for month, to play again today.

“If he’s healthy enough to play, he will, and we expect him to be healthy,” Richt said. “We still have to practice a couple of days, but it’s a game. Whoever our starters are, we’re going to play them. I think you get your conditioning in practice, mostly. We’re going to play him according to what is best for the team at that time.”

Georgia’s much-maligned defense also put a strong effort against the offensively-challenged Gators. Georgia finished with four sacks and held the Gators to 319 yards of offense. Florida averaged just 4.6 yards per offensive play.

“We were handling the run game pretty good,” Richt said. “The goal, obviously, is to get them off the field and force kicks and things of that nature. We’ve done a better job of that the last few weeks, and I think that’s why it’s all starting to come together. Hopefully we can continue that momentum.”

Junior linebacker Amarlo Herrera also thinks Georgia’s defense is starting to come together.

“We’ve started getting the other team off the field quicker and giving our offense better field position,” Herrera said. “We still have a long way to go. The excitement will get here sooner or later but we’re still just working hard.”

UGA receiver and Camilla native Justin Scott-Wesley will face a suspension next season for his arrest last week on possession of less than an ounce of marijuana.

The penalty for a drug offense, per Georgia school policy, is one game (one-tenth of competition).

Scott-Wesley, who is sidelined for the season after tearing his ACL on Oct. 5 vs. Tennessee, addressed the arrest on Twitter.

“I won’t apologize,” Scott-Welsey tweeted. “You deserve more than that. I will let my actions moving forward speak for me.”