JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Arthur Lynch began choking up. It was the final game of his college career. It was the final play. It was not the way he wanted to go out.
Two drops, including on Georgia's critical last play. It would have converted a fourth-down inside the 10, instead it fell off Lynch's hands and chest, and Georgia lost 24-19 to Nebraska.
"It was one of those things, you've gotta move on," Lynch said, his eyes welling up. "You really want to go out and represent Georgia, and represent your teammates the right way."
The senior tight end reached down briefly to wipe his eyes.
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"I couldn't do that," he said.
He was asked if teammates and coaches came up and said anything to him after the play or the game.
"Yeah. But again, it's one of those things, you can't really say anything," he said. "People are like, Oh don't worry about it. But it's all you can really worry about. As an athlete you try to perform to your highest level at all times, and unfortunately two of my most important players of my career are two plays I couldn't come up with.
"That's on me. That's just kind of how it goes sometimes in sports. It's kind of like in the Auburn game: Are we gonna expect a hail mary like that? No. But at the end of the day things happen, and some people make plays, and some people, whatever you wanna call it, choke, drop balls. And for me, I just couldn't come up with the play to make up for my team."
Among the people coming to Lynch's defense was Georgia offensive coordinator Mike Bobo, who said Lynch had "nothing to hang his head about."
"A senior that's poured his life into this program for five years, and played his tail off, and wanted to go out with a win and wanted to play well. And he played well," Bobo said. "i know he had a couple drops, but he made a ton of third-down catches in this game to keep drives alive. I'd take an Arty Lynch every year. The type of guy who's not really about himself, he's about the team, he played his tail off. ...
"He's gonna be a remembered Bulldog for a long time and have a special place in our hearts for him and how hard he plays."
The drops, though glaring, came in what was otherwise one of Lynch's finest games. He had a career-high six catches, along with 69 yards.
A first-team All-SEC player this season, Lynch has also been known for being one of the most visible members of the team in the media. And after the loss on Wednesday he was one of the first players who came out for postgame interviews.
Not only did Lynch not dodge the media, he turned several questions about other things into an opportunity to talk about his game. When asked about Hutson Mason, the tight end brought it back around to his drops. When asked whether both teams were having problems with the wet field, he did the same.
"At the end of the day we're Division I athletes, we're on scholarship, we've gotta make plays no matter the situation. And unfortunately for myself, the plays that I needed to make the most, I couldn't make them."