I'll be in Athens on Friday, actually, and hope to visit Chubb's, a new place north of the city in the town of Ila. Pulaski Heights is definitely worth a second look from me, but not this time out. Should Ort. see this thread, he'll probably wax eloquently about Harry's Pig Shop, which is indeed very good, and one of the very few places I've visited that serves both Brunswick stew and hash over rice.
Sadly, Bill's in Hull closed recently. Their chicken mull was amazing.
But yes, whichever you pick - and the map that Chickenplucker provided has links to my stories, and there are Urbanspoon badges on each of them - triple-check the hours before you plan. Some great places, like Paul's in Lexington, have very oddball hours. If you only have a Tuesday or Wednesday free, your options will be very limited.
If it was me, on a Saturday, then Paul's would be my first choice, followed by Zeb's, and Hot Thomas. I'd also consider Harry's, Fresh Air, Bar-B-Q Shack, and Scott & BJ's as very reasonable options. And if, by highway, you mean I-20, then Crowe's in Madison and Holcomb's in Greensboro are close by.