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Georgia photo by Tony Walsh / Georgia defensive linemen Devonte Wyatt (95) and Malik Herring (10) helped hold Tennessee running back Ty Chander and the Vounteers to minus-1 rushing yard during Saturday's 44-21 win by the Bulldogs.

Moving on from Saturday's football game between Georgia and Tennessee and forgetting about it are two different things.

For Kirby Smart's Bulldogs, the 27-0 second-half surge that turned a 21-17 deficit into a 44-21 thumping of the Volunteers served notice that No. 3 Georgia may have the more complete team entering this week's challenge of facing No. 2 Alabama in Tuscaloosa. For Jeremy Pruitt's Vols, the result inside Sanford Stadium proved there is more work to be done before playing a 60-minute game against the elite teams of the Southeastern Conference.

"We have a lot of things that we need to get better at," Tennessee fifth-year senior quarterback Jarrett Guarantano said. "Every single player on the team needs to get better, including myself. Our team's goal is to go 1-0 every week, and now we're on to Kentucky. We'll learn from this one and get better from this one.

"This one hurts like you know what, but there is nothing we can do about it now."

Georgia now has four consecutive wins over Tennessee and has triumphed in nine of the past 11 series meetings. The Bulldogs, however, have lost five straight to Alabama, including gut-wrenching defeats in the 2012 and 2018 SEC championship games and in the title contest of the College Football Playoff for the 2017 season.

Smart was asked Saturday night how quickly he and his staff would move on to the Crimson Tide.

"A lot of people might brush this game off and go to the next one, but we can't do that," he replied. "They're going to watch our tape deeper than we're going to watch our tape. They'll be watching this tape Sunday through Friday, so we better watch it to anticipate what they're going to see."

Alabama, which outlasted Ole Miss 63-48 Saturday night in the highest-scoring regulation game in SEC history, and Georgia are the SEC's lone 3-0 teams entering the fourth weekend of head-to-head league matchups. The Tide opened Sunday as 5-point favorites for the 8 p.m. EDT game on CBS.

Tennessee, meanwhile, opened Sunday as a 7-point favorite. The No. 18 Vols (2-1) will host the Wildcats (1-2) at noon on the SEC Network with hopes of resuming their successful ways after Saturday's scissoring of an eight-game winning streak.

"You've got to have the mentality to get better and the attitude of learning from it," Vols sophomore linebacker Henry To'o To'o said. "This is not a loss. It's a lesson, so as long as you can turn a loss into a lesson and carry that on, you'll be perfectly fine."

Contact David Paschall at dpaschall@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6524. Follow him on Twitter @DavidSPaschall.

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