The fifth-year senior wiped away tears with a towel as he spoke to reporters in the bowels of EverBank Field Wednesday following Georgia’s 24-19 loss to Nebraska.
“You want to go out and represent Georgia and represent your teammates in the right way,” Lynch said. “I couldn’t do that.”
Lynch made a pair of fourth-quarter drops, the last inside the Nebraska 10-yard line on a fourth down pass with 25 seconds to play.
“Unfortunately the two most important plays of my career are the two throws that they threw to me and I couldn’t come up (with it),” Lynch said. “That’s on me. That’s kind of how it goes sometimes in sports.”
Lynch set a career-high with six catches for 69 yards.
Three hours after the game, he tweeted out: “Sorry for coming up short #DawgNation I love you all…”
“It’s tough, especially a senior, to go out feeling like you may have cost us the football game,” offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said. “By no means did Arthur Lynch cost us that football game. I thought he blocked well at the point of attack and made several key third-down catches to keep drives going….He played his tail off for Georgia for five years.”
Bobo has head coach aspirations—one day
Bobo declined to comment specifically about whether he’s interested in the Georgia Southern head coach opening.
“Right now I’m just disappointed that we didn’t get it done today, to be honest,” Bobo said.
He did address his aspirations to be a head coach eventually.
“I think we all, well I, aspire to be a head coach one day,” Bobo said. “Where at? I don’t know. I also aspire to win a championship here at the University of Georgia. We’ve been close so many times and I do feel like the ingredients are there. I do feel like Mark Richt is one of the best head coaches in the country. We’re able to get players and have guys that can make plays.”
Big day for Morgan
Sophomore Marshall Morgan tied a Georgia bowl record with four field goals.
He made all of his attempts and will enter next season having made 17 straight field goals.
The first-team All-SEC pick went 22 of 24 on the season after making field goals of 38, 28, 38 and 30.
“Everything went smooth,” Morgan said. “I mean, it was wet out there. The field wasn’t as we would have wanted, but we got it done.”
In the postgame news conference, Richt changed the subject after talking about the 99-yard touchdown pass against Georgia in the third quarter.
“I thought Marshall Morgan did good,” Richt said.
“Thanks, coach,” Morgan said.
“Just thought we’d acknowledge that he’s here,” Richt said.
Gurley racks up yards, but doesn’t hit 1,000 rushing
Georgia tailback Todd Gurley finished with 183 total yards, but fell just short of hitting the 1,000-yard rushing mark for the second straight season
He finished the season with 989 yards rushing after having a team-high 86 on 21 carries Wednesday.
“It is what it is,” said Gurley, who got into it with some Nebraska players because he said they held onto his jersey. “That’s not going to define me. Y’all know what I can do.”
He also finished with a team-high seven catches for a career-high 97 yards and a touchdown.
His longest run of the day was 16 yards on a wet turf.
“It was kind of bad just with the rain and everything,” Gurley said. “You just had to be patient out there, you just couldn’t go full speed like you wanted to.”
Gurley, sidelined for three and a half games this season with a sprained ankle, came out at times in the red zone to catch his breath, Bobo said.
“You can tell he’s still not 100 percent,” Bobo said. “It’s a big challenge for him to get back to where he’s full speed and able to finish games. He’s a difference maker right now and he’s not 100 percent healthy. We’ve got to get him 100 percent healthy and confident again and playing and cutting off that ankle.”
Fans don’t come out in droves
The Gator Bowl announced that there were 60,712 tickets distributed for the game, but there may not have been 40,000 actually on hand on the rainy day.
“It wasn’t as packed as Georgia-Florida, but it still at times felt like an SEC game or a big game like that,” outside linebacker Jordan Jenkins said. “You know you’re not playing for one of the higher bowls like the natty (national title game) so you know not as many people are going to come, but besides the field conditions I feel like it was a pretty good experience.”
Nebraska sold about 3,000 tickets and donated another 1,000 to a veterans foundation. It had an allotment of 12,500. Georgia sold about 7,500 of its 15,000 tickets.
Murray, LeMay departing
Georgia got a chance to say goodbye to two of its quarterbacks who didn’t play in the game.
SEC-record holder Aaron Murray, recovering from a torn ACL, wore jeans and a Georgia “G” jacket and chatted with Richt on the field pregame.
“He looks great already on the rehab and I do believe he’s going to go on and to do big things on the next level,” Bobo said.
SEC commissioner Mike Slive, who made his way Wednesday also to the Capital One Bowl in Orlando and the Outback in Tampa, talked to Murray on the sideline before the game.
Reserve Christian LeMay, who practiced with the team during the bowl, is transferring, Bobo confirmed.
“LeMay has decided to move on and I wish nothing but the best for him and his career,” Bobo said. “I do think he’s got a chance to be a very good player and hopefully the place he goes to and the system they run, he’ll be able to be successful.”
LeMay has told coaches at Jacksonville State (Ala.) that he will join the FCS program. Former Bulldogs safety Shaquille Fluker said he’s also transferring there.
This and that
Georgia senior offensive left guard Dallas Lee left the game with an upper thigh strain. Freshman Brandon Kublanow replaced him. Senior right guard Chris Burnette was sideline for a time with a hip flexor but returned.
Freshman J.J. Green had three kick returns for 93 yards, including a career-long of 48.
Safety Tray Matthews still wasn’t healthy enough to play on defense. He did play on special teams. With Josh Harvey-Clemons suspended, Corey Moore and Quincy Mauger started at safety. Devin Bowman got increased playing time as the fifth defensive back
“I thought Bowman did a great job,” defensive coordinator Todd Grantham said. “We put him on some man free stuff early in the game and they tried to take some shots on him. He was covering the guy. I think he’s practiced well. I was really pleased with his work.”