Injury could put a dent in development of UGA defense

Lost practice time for Akeem Dent (far left) could hinder the development of Georgia's defense. (Pouya Dianat / AJC)

Lost practice time for Akeem Dent (far left) could hinder the development of Georgia's defense. (Pouya Dianat / AJC)

I’m just back from a brief family trip to Nashville, where we had a nice reunion with an old friend, saw a great concert (Paul McCartney) and began a day with the jarring sight of a guy at the hotel breakfast buffet strolling around in a bright orange UT shirt and green pajama pants. It was like passing a wreck on the highway; I had the urge to tell the kids to look away.

Catching up on the news, I see nothing really surprising came out of the Atlanta fan gathering, which is probably a good thing. And it’s also no big surprise that the NCAA wants to talk with only one UGA player. Most folks always assumed that. But at least now we know that coaches need to pay attention to whether they’re answering an e-mail or a text from a prospect. Mind-boggling.

Meanwhile, the news about inside linebacker Akeem Dent being sidelined four to six weeks because of toe surgery is a bit worrisome, especially since preseason camp hasn’t even begun yet. While he’s likely to miss only the opening game, the loss of practice time for him might hinder progress for Todd Grantham’s revamped defense in the middle — an area that already concerns me, especially against the run. It looks like this pretty seals the deal that Richard Samuel won’t be redshirting, since depth is an issue at linebacker.

Injuries pretty well derailed the Dogs season before last and were partly responsible for the running game getting off to a very slow start last year, so a lot of fingers are crossed that Mark Richt’s team makes it through August without a bunch of guys in green jerseys.

We all know how important it is that Aaron Murray stays healthy, but thinking about what would happen with injuries at a few other key spots is scary. Without Justin Houston harrying quarterbacks, the new defense would look more vulnerable. If Washaun Ealey and Caleb King both were to get banged up, Shaun Chapas might have to shift over from fullback. And while there appears to be a fair amount of talent behind A.J. Green, the drop-off there still would be considerable should he get hurt again.

Maybe those UGA researchers who unlocked the secret to producing four-leaf clovers should send a shipment over to Butts-Mehre, just in case.

Does the prospect of injuries worry you as much as it does me? What else is on your mind in this last week before preseason practice starts?

72 comments Add your comment

dawgmanwayx

July 28th, 2010
10:46 am

we need to recruit some linebackers this year. only 1 committed, and most of the in-state lb’ers are committed to other teams.

Amsterdam Sam

July 28th, 2010
10:47 am

Why fret over what hasn’t happened yet? All teams stand an equal chance at injuries, so let them play and don’t worry until something happens

Vick=Dog killing thug

July 28th, 2010
10:50 am

Injuries are part of the game. Dawgs have plenty of players. Ain’t no thang…

OEJ

July 28th, 2010
10:54 am

Its not that serious, hes probably going to mist the first 2 or three games. I think he should be back for the Miss St game. Either way I’m sure we have players to step up. Its a toe injury not a knee or shoulder injury. I’m sure he will bounce back.

bufbox

July 28th, 2010
10:59 am

Yes.. a little worried at inside LB. Gotta get Dent back in mix ASAP. Gamble gonna need come back to inside, at least short term. Another idea is get Robinson and Dowtin on field at same time. Dowtin slated to back up Robinson, but has some starts and more experience than the rest of the backups. Gonna have to use a duo of Robinson/Gamble… or Robinson/Dowtin… until Dent is back.

BurningRedBleedingBlack

July 28th, 2010
11:06 am

First welcome back BIll missed your articles, hope the trip went well. Bill i was also scared at first when i came across this new. Then i started looking into are depth more and remembered that Gamble was placed from inside to outside to help with outside, do you think they will move gamble back to inside. Gamble has great run stopping abilities, and hes not a rookie. With us signing RuebenFurloghi i feel moving Gamble to inside will be the answer. Plus Dent a young kid and Toe surgery should only take 4 weeks to heal if he doesn’t agravate it. I agree with you alot on the injury to all the other posistion, Hope that new coach they hired for stength and Condition pays off. As always GO DAWGS!!!!!!!!!!!

“If we score we may win, if they never score,we’ll never lose.

GeoffDawg

July 28th, 2010
11:07 am

We’ve had way more than our fair share of injuries the last couple of years. I’d say that we’re due for some good luck. *knock on wood*

BurningRedBleedingBlack

July 28th, 2010
11:08 am

bufbox, i totally agree i was thinking the same thing.

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BurningRedBleedingBlack

July 28th, 2010
11:12 am

GeoffDawg, your not kidding!!!!! It’s like when are we going to catch a break with injuries??? We need to pass that bad luck on to another team.

SOGADOG

July 28th, 2010
11:13 am

Dont be such a worry wart. Dent is just as inexperienced in Grantham’s defense as the guy behind him, so does it matter that much? Dent’s replacement has just as much to learn as Dent and who knows, he may be better. Put aside the fear. If Christopher Columbus had gotten scared and turned around you would have never heard of him.

Dawg 39

July 28th, 2010
11:21 am

I agree that Gamble may have to come back inside. I expected Dent to be the defensive play caller & defensive captain (keeping everyone else where thay were supposed to be & doing what thay were supposed to do). Now Gamble is the logical choice to assume that role leaving us a little short at OLB. Just 1 more concern before the season starts.

Budweiser Bob

July 28th, 2010
11:29 am

Bill

Will you do me a favor please

Since I have to continue to pay over $1500 in tickets and parking every year and endure watching my hard earned money pay the coaching staff at UGA to get a beat down from FL every year:

When you get the opportunity to sit at the press conference for the new Athletic Director could you ask him if they would send us a real license plate instead of this cardboard crap that wont last a week on the road

I mean come on I should at least get something a T-shirt a metal license plate something!!

Help me out Bill

Budweiser Bob

July 28th, 2010
11:33 am

I mean I know asking to beat FL is, well, asking too much, now that we are asked to give 5 times the amount we used too when we did beat FL

But I guess UGA demands more from its fans but fans cant demand more from them

kb

July 28th, 2010
11:33 am

Perhaps former parade All American Akeem Hebron will step up. Replacing Janacek is a big bonus.

dawg fight

July 28th, 2010
11:39 am

What ever happened to Chase Vasser? Is he project to play any this year?

SSIgator

July 28th, 2010
11:50 am

What is this article? A set up as to why UGA goes 8-4 this year? Come on Bill, all teams have injuries and the better teams have back-ups to fill in for those who go down. Or is this the first in a series of articles that basically tell why UGA is not as good as everyone thinks they are this year and at the end of the year you can say you tried to tell us back in July? Play the games and the other will be self-evident.

ca dawg

July 28th, 2010
11:51 am

glad trip to music city was nice, bill: i grew up there and am headed back myself pretty soon.

it’s unfortunate but i’m not terribly worried. marc weiszer reported that robinson and dowtin would start inside but didn’t say anything about moving gamble back inside–the problem with that is that we’re just as thin outside as we are up the middle, even after losing dent. the only way we could move gamble inside is if stripling or morant show us something at OLB right away.

Holy Cow

July 28th, 2010
12:00 pm

SSIGator – never anything nice to say, always bagging on the Dawgs and the Ajc and whomever is writing the article – yet always on the blog. Go figure.

thUGA

July 28th, 2010
12:04 pm

Don’t forget the jail time. That could hamper practice as well

RedandBlackGirl

July 28th, 2010
12:06 pm

Git off me daddy, yur crushin my cigarettes!

Big Bad John

July 28th, 2010
12:31 pm

Don’t worry about he mule going blind, just load the wagon!

Big Bad John

July 28th, 2010
12:31 pm

dawgster

July 28th, 2010
1:03 pm

SSigator, just a classless gator, what else to say…can’t wait to hear the excuses from the gators whern their season starts to tankl..Go find a gator blog to spout off your remarks..At least if you are going to post on here try to come up with some original material…And just to add, all of the gator fans on here are not classless…just a select few that are always chestpumping…

jj

July 28th, 2010
1:03 pm

I like Dowtin. I’m surprised he’s not starting the way he finished off the year last year. He looks very promising. I’m not sure if he plays in the middle or not, but he seems to have some size and knows where to be. Gonna miss Curran getting 10 tackles a game.

Ocilla Dawg

July 28th, 2010
1:24 pm

Bill

Have you heard any injury updates on Justin “Bean” Anderson and others. Wondering if they will be ready for camp

IveyLeaguer

July 28th, 2010
1:25 pm

Have you seen Chapas run? If Ealey and King go down, it won’t be Chapas at tailback. Goodness gracious. Munzenmaier could get some snaps, but that’s about it.

Schuyler

July 28th, 2010
1:29 pm

Red panties are falling from the sky and are blanketing the Cesspool of the South!!!

here we go again

July 28th, 2010
1:34 pm

Once again, as is the case every year…..a few injuries could “hurt” this club. Toe injuries, shoulder injuries, arrests….is it any wonder why we can never field a team that can compete…..

Why are we perpetually thin at every position? Why do we always have so many injuries?
I for one am about tired of the injury excuse. Maybe the S/C staff should have been shown the door with Willie…..

We should bring back Warren Morris….he would glue people’s limbs back together and get them back into the game.

Or maybe bring in Rodney Hampton (The greatest player in my lifetime to ever wear #7 at UGA) he could talk about how he ran for 100+ yards one week after undergoing knee surgery.

Budweiser Bob

July 28th, 2010
1:34 pm

Bill

Seriously

I really need an answer here

This cardboard tag cant even be used for a dust pan. I really want to feel Im getting my money’s worth here

Please see if you can get me a metal car tag, that shouldnt be too much to ask for the money I give

76-Dawg

July 28th, 2010
1:55 pm

Georgia has had more trouble with injury than most good teams because they don’t weigh, CONDITIONING , as high on the importance list as they should. When CMR got rid of the very inept defensive coaches they should have hired a great conditioning coach and not take such an important position for coaches so trivial

DawgFan24

July 28th, 2010
1:55 pm

Dont forget Dawg Fans, we are getting the LB transfer from USC, should be ready to go by next year! GOOOOOOO DAWGS!

rduck

July 28th, 2010
2:00 pm

just a thought from the other side of things.. Why is an injury to any one player on this team so hard to handle. This is the bunch that raves on their top 10 recruiting classes every offseason. Why is it that you guys sign all of these so-called can’t miss prospects but never have any depth? Could it be that the great Mark Richt and coach Gardner do not sign kids based on what the needs of the team are? Just a thought…

bufbox

July 28th, 2010
2:07 pm

@here we go again… heading into camp, we are in good physical shape… other than Dent, everyone is expected to participate. Don’t know what S/C could have done in their regimen to ward off a stubbed toe.

Budweiser Bob

July 28th, 2010
2:12 pm

Bill

Come on man

I have to watch us get crushed by FL even with 3 NFL prospects on offense.

Dont I deserve a metal car tag instead of cardboard for the $1500 dollars I have to give to watch this crap.

How2fish

July 28th, 2010
2:51 pm

Budweiser Bob what are you ten years old if you want a bloody metal tag go buy one. What are you waiting for Obama to set up a new federal watchdog group to ensure the proper allocation of metal tags..quit whining.

Fozzie Bear

July 28th, 2010
3:10 pm

Get it? Injuries could put a ” Dent” in the development of the defense! Waka! Waka!

Lowcountry Bulldawg

July 28th, 2010
3:19 pm

Who is worried about the conditioning? Good grief have you ever seen the mat drills? Collegiate football players are so conditioned that it is laughable to blame injury’s to “lack” of conditioning.

shane#1

July 28th, 2010
3:23 pm

Yeah, gotta keep them toes in condition!

shane#1

July 28th, 2010
3:36 pm

I have a metal tag with a cartoon Uga on one side. I got it from the State of Georgia. Guess I will go drink a beer and quit being a smart a$$, ’cause nobody likes a smart a$$.

Gator Lover

July 28th, 2010
3:47 pm

Have fun in Jacksonville this year. Dawg fans might want to be a little drunker than usual with Florida slaughtering UGA even worse than usual. It will be another glorious win for the Gators!

But it will be fun watching thousands of red panties falling from the sky. Feel free to take a pair home with you as a colorful souvenir.

Why

July 28th, 2010
3:48 pm

in the name of god would you pay money and spend valuable time at a McCartney venue?

Victoria's Secret

July 28th, 2010
3:50 pm

Victoria’s Secret has some extra nice crimson red panties for discriminating dawg fans. Check ‘em out. ;-)

Budweiser Bob

July 28th, 2010
3:51 pm

How2fish

I have put in a request to Obama for some federal aid so we can learn how to beat FL

Oh and I dont want to go buy a tag, its a slap in my face to recieve some cardboard tag for the money I have to give. Just save the money in postage and buying that imitation crap instead of sending that crap out.

Better yet take my money and invest in something that will beat FL

shane#2

July 28th, 2010
3:52 pm

Please note that I am not shane#1.

shane#2

July 28th, 2010
3:55 pm

It could be worse. At least they haven’t sent you any cardboard red panties.

Evansdawg

July 28th, 2010
3:59 pm

Again….even Georgia fans should take to the red panties. I don’t see whats so bad about people threatening to bring red panties to our games. Our own fans should embrace it and wear them on their heads the entire season. Why not? It could increase the bedlam in the stands. A good raucous crowd is good for the team. At least Damon wasn’t riding with a dude carrying his fruit of the looms…something I am certain Tebow has done before….or will do.

Budweiser Bob

July 28th, 2010
4:07 pm

Bill

Is it possible that I might recieve my request for federal aid, for the beat FL campain

What a mess

July 28th, 2010
4:23 pm

The excuses will be flying as soon as pratice starts and the real injury bug hits. Lets face it folks our football program is slipping and CMR is running out of gas.

Budweiser Bob

July 28th, 2010
4:43 pm

Yea and Im running out of money gambling or should I say donating my money to watch them lose to FL

Can I have my metal license plate now Bill