A pair of former running backs from the county were part of college football conference championships last weekend.
Former New Manchester standout Brian Herrien helped Georgia clinch the SEC Championship while former Alexander all-state standout Daetrich Harrington was part of Appalachian State’s Sun Belt Conference title.
Herrien, a sophomore running back, had two carries for 16 yards in the Bulldogs 28-7 win over then-No. 2 Auburn at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
Harrington had his best game of his college career in the Mountaineers’ 64-14 win over Louisiana-LaFayette at home. He had a team-leading 123 yards rushing and a touchdown on 17 carries. It was Harrington’s first collegiate 100-yard rushing game and second touchdown.
The Mountaineers earned a bid into the Dollar General Bowl on Dec. 23 against Toledo. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. on ESPN at Ladd-Peeples Stadium in Mobile, Ala.
Georgia had 421 yards of offense in the win. Herrien had a 13-yard run late in the contest for a key first down to keep the clock running.
The win avenged an earlier loss to the Tigers in Auburn last month.
It was the team’s only loss on the season.
With the Bulldogs win, they earned a spot in the College Football Playoffs and a No. 3 ranking. Georgia will play second-ranked Oklahoma in the Rose Bowl on New Year’s Day in Pasadena, Calif.
Defending champion Clemson is ranked No. 1 and will play No. 4 Alabama in the other semifinals games in the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans.
The winners will meet on Jan. 8 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the championship.
“I couldn’t be more excited for our team and especially our seniors with the selection of our team to participate in the College Football Playoff,” Georgia coach Kirby Smart said in a statement. “This is certainly a goal of every college football team, coach and player and we are extremely honored. It also presents a great opportunity for our fans who have been so supportive of our team throughout the season. Playing in a venue with such rich tradition will be a rewarding experience and it represents another step for our team and program.”
This will be Georgia’s second appearance in the Rose Bowl game. In its only previous appearance, the Bulldogs defeated UCLA, 9-0, on Jan. 1 1943. The win resulted in a national championship for the Bulldogs.
This will be Georgia’s 53rd bowl game appearance—fourth most of any team in the country. The Bulldogs’ all-time bowl record is 30-19-3. Georgia is making its 21st consecutive bowl appearance, which ranks as the third longest active streak in the country.
Oklahoma defeated TCU to clinch the Big 12 Championship last weekend.
On the season, Harrington has rushed for has played in eight games and rushed for 246 yards and two touchdowns on 50 carries.
Herrien has rushed for 265 yards and a touchdown on 61 carries in 13 games.