Five things to watch on G-Day

  ”It went real fast,” Mark Richt said. Not sure his players would agree with that assessment of time, but spring practice is almost over at Georgia. There will be a brief session in shorts today, then the G-Day game on Saturday, and that’s it.

   Here’s my list of top five things I’ll be watching on G-Day:

  1. Carlton Thomas at tailback. Ask a Georgia player which teammates have impressed/surprised them the most this spring, and you’re likely to hear about Thomas, the small, shifty tailback. It’ll be real interesting to see what he does against the No. 1 defense on Saturday and maybe a bit surprising, given all the talk, if he doesn’t dazzle a bit.

  2. The debut of the freshmen quarterbacks. It’ll be the first time playing in Sanford Stadium – not counting a couple of closed scrimmages with no one in the stands – for Aaron Murray and Zach Mettenberger. Bulldog Nation is eager for a first glimpse of them between the hedges, and they know it. Will one or both seize the moment?

  3. The development of the defense. The tribulations of last season left some scars on the defense, and this spring has been about restoring “attitude and edge, whatever you want to call it” – Richt’s words – as well as sound fundamentals. “I see a defensive team that is very unified right now and has got a little bit of a chip on their shoulder,” Richt said a couple of days ago. “They feel like they’ve got something to prove.” Word is, DT Geno Atkins has been absolutely dominant in closed practices, so his play surely bears watching Saturday.

  4. The crowd.  With this being Easter weekend, with the Masters going on, and with G-Day on television, how many people will show up at Sanford Stadium?  Georgia has been pushing hard for a huge turnout, partly because empty seats aren’t telegenic.

  5. The obvious.  With apologies for a quarterback-heavy list, I’m of course very interested to see Joe Cox in his long-awaited role as the program’s clear No. 1 QB  and to see how Logan Gray plays as he tries to stay in front of the freshmen for the top backup role.

   Please share your lists.



132 comments Add your comment


April 10th, 2009
7:05 am

Let’s see – the D gets burned by a high school quarterback and a walk-on receiver in a closed scrimmage; a 5′7″ running back no one knows about is the hit star of the spring against the D; we have no DE that has stepped up; and WM is still the D coordinator. Yep, sounds like the Dawgs are in for a loooonnngggt season once they play “real” competition next fall – let’s just hope the O can follow the lead of coach Searels and peak EVERY game to keep all of us interested and not focused on the non-development of the D.

And CMR, will you please quit letting St. Nick have all of the seemingly star quality players sign with AL for NEXT year?


April 10th, 2009
7:07 am

Joe Cox and the RBs.

Defense isn’t going to mean as much as Saturday during the season because defense is played with emotion. Yes you can do that in practice and hopefully we see some good tackling but let’s face it, whatever they do, it’s not the same as game time. Offense is execution, defense is execution and ATTITUDE.

Yep, scheduling wasn’t favorable for this weekend. And you didn’t even mention spring break where a lot of people are out of town. I would be impressed if it’s more than 30,000.

innocent bystander

April 10th, 2009
7:07 am

How will our corners play and can we get pressure from the edge? Obviously that’s a big part of your overall point about the defense.I hope Caleb King steps up myself. Here is a back so highly touted that when he was a recruit thought to be an Auburn lean waiving a red-shirt year appeared to be part of his commitment deal. Then the high school injury and now the waiting enters its third year. Let’s hope for Caleb’s and Uga’s sake that the wait is over. Nothing against Carlton Thomas. Tyson Browning gave us hope in our first loss to Nick Saban in LSU’s championship year with his dazzling catch and run. It would be wonderful if Carlton Thomas could do that two or three times a year. It’s a great luxury to have more than one great back.Richard Samuel and Dontavious Jackson will have their say as well.


April 10th, 2009
7:09 am

Not being on css for once, at least this year we won’t be made to suffer through Buck Belue’s ponderous explanation of steak ‘n lobster vs beanie weanies … will we??


April 10th, 2009
7:33 am

Where can i find a depth chart.

The mystery again is Kiante Tripp – tremendous talent – enigma


April 10th, 2009
7:41 am

UGAG will lose 5 games this fall and play in the Weedeater Bowl while we will be BCSing and holding great Tickle Piles!!!!

[...] Chip Towers of the AJC provides five things to watch on Georgia’s G-Day. [...]

Hunk Erdown

April 10th, 2009
7:54 am

We can trot all kinds of multi-talented, quasi-styled running backs and receivers out there until something works, but the big question is whether Joe Cox and the other QBs can step in post-Stafford and run the offense with confidence and efficiency. It would be great if Cox can win over Dawg Nation by showing that he can do the job without any lag in production, I personally don’t beleive that Stafford was so perfect that Cox won’t be able to appropiately fill his shoes and then some. One thing is for sure; they are different styled players, both with plenty of talent. I beleive it will be the intangibles that will either sink or float Cox’s boat; confidence, patience, leadership, etc.


April 10th, 2009
8:06 am

What about the kicking/punting game. We know that after a good start our FG kicking was questionable at best. Can Walsh recover and show something? We lose our punter with a big question about Butler. He was supposed to be worthy of a schlarship out of HS, but in 2 years could not beat out a walk-on for the punting job? And 2 important positions in the kicking gamw that is never talked about….. we lose our holder and long snapper. The long-snapper in particular can dramatically affect the timing of the punter and the kicker. I want to see the Frix kid snap. His dad snapped in the early 80’s.
If we want to be as good as we want to be, punting, kicking, holding, snapping better be improved.


April 10th, 2009
8:09 am

In response to yellowblood ,look forward to a rematch with LSU?That was brutal,but that’s what happens when you quit in abowl game.


April 10th, 2009
8:43 am


Voice of Reason

April 10th, 2009
8:49 am

lakerat- if a freshmen quarterback and a walk-on reciever were playing thn do you really think that the starting defense was on the field? And maybe instead of bitching about the d on that play you could be happy that Murray and Spellman, and Murray and Troupe(not a walk on) are showing some potential to be playmakers.

Voice of Reason

April 10th, 2009
8:51 am

oh, and we have only lost one recruit that we were wanting to Saban… I would call that letting them all go to AL. We aren’t going to get every player we want moron.

Voice of Reason

April 10th, 2009
8:52 am

correction: I would not call that letting them all go to AL.

Percy Harvey

April 10th, 2009
8:52 am

Payday is right around the corner- April 25…
go gator.


April 10th, 2009
9:11 am

Tim…you stole my list from “Counting Down to G-Day.” :) (first comment)

[...] Chip Towers of the AJC provides five things to watch on Georgia’s G-Day. [...]

Bulldawg Billy

April 10th, 2009
9:23 am

Percy H. will not be drafted too high, he is far too prone to injury.


April 10th, 2009
9:39 am


You must remember that when Butler came out of high school it was a battle in the fall for punting. Him and Mimbs were neck and neck… considering Mimbs ended up being one of the best punters in the SEC the last two seasons I think I can assume Butler has the chops to get it done. Also, Walsh didn’t miss a whole ton of field goals last season. He did miss a couple easy ones, but he WAS a freshman. I’m confident he’ll be a solid force back there this year. The only issue is that we have to get him away from kickoffs…

I personally want to see Kiante Tripp on the D-line, Izzy Troupe catch a few balls, and I’d like to see some production out of Aron White. He’s been in the program long enough to be a force now.


April 10th, 2009
9:53 am

Voice of Reason -

Yes, I would expect the first D to be on the field during a simulated scrimmage when the high school QB and a walk-on receiver are playing – very seldom do you have first O against first D during simulated scrimmages! (obviously you never played ball past the 8th grade).

Regarding AL and its recruiting/signing of GA high school talent, my intent was that AL is coming in and signing a lot of talent NOW, and thus getting a lot of exposure that other kids in GA pick up on and MAYBE want to be a part, too. Understandably, though, CMR may be hampered by the higher academic standards that UGA makes him adhere to (unlike AL, UGA standards are higher than SEC standards) so UGA may have to wait before offering to SOMEWHAT make sure that the kid will qualify if offered – AL and and others go ahead and offer and then hope that the kid qualifies; that is how AL last year, and Ole Miss this year, ended up signing more than the alloted number of players than they are supposed to sign…so if we know they are close to being qualified, why not at least go ahead and offer? So far, UGA has not signed ANYONE for next year – while AL has about 10 commits, and TX has over 20!

1893 Reporter

April 10th, 2009
9:59 am

Not that this is the topic of today’s post, but I wish to present a summary of a report I wrote for the daily paper back in 93. It is of relevance to Georgia and Georgia Tech athletic supporters.

The day was November 4, 1893. A little history for you. The first match between Georgia and Georgia Tech.

I remember it like it was yesterday. We were gathered at Herty Field with our finest clothes, hats and smokeable tobacco. The ladies wore their shiniest of scarves and fluttered about like butterflies. Excitement was in the Athens air awaiting our rival’s arrival and the battle that was to take place.

The Georgia School of Technology (that’s what they called Georgia Tech at the time) Blacksmiths led by coaches Stan “Devil” Borleske and “Cheap” Casey Finnegan arrived by train and entered our fair city with arrogance and disregard for our lady residences. A few of Athens prettiest ladies drew faint at the sight of these bothersome and boorish city foot-ballers. They arrived to play our dear honest and trustworthy Georgia boys coached by Ernest Brown.

And so the game began. At one time early in the last half of the game, a Tech player announced to the crowd that he was the man of the match and that he would take the local woman of his choosing. A stone was hurled at this player, striking him a cruel blow to the head. He immediately ceased such announcements. At another time, after the coaches of the Tech team lifted the skirt of one of our fairer lady observers, one of the Athenians drew a knife and threatened revenge. The Tech coaches hurried themselves back to the game offering apologies and coins. Because of their vile nature, the Techs were poked and gouged with canes on plays toward the boundary lines. Some of the crowd had the privilege of the gridiron equally with the players.

True, that day the Blacksmiths defeated Georgia 28-6 on four scores by Leonard Wood, a thirty-three year old who did not matriculate at the Technology school. Travesty was called and agreed up.

The Techs as they departed our fair field announced loudly and to all that they had used a heterogeneous collection of Atlanta residents – a United States Army surgeon, a medical student, a lawyer, and an insurance agent among them, with here and there a student of Georgia’s School of Technology thrown in to give the mixture a Technological flavor. The scoundrels!

For this callous yet frank admission, our dear fans defended the integrity of the University by hurling rocks and other debris at the offending Tech players and chased the ill-mannered Blacksmiths back to their awaiting train.

Ahh, the days. A loss is made better by a hurled stone. I had not hurled any in quite some time. I will take a loss every eight years just to launch a few at the scoundrels.

Pago Flyer

April 10th, 2009
10:01 am

The first thing we’re watching…Sanford Stadium filling up!?

we had a great gameplan but failed to execute

April 10th, 2009
10:07 am


How nice it is to see no mention in today’s blog of the beloved messiah who has forsaken us for the NFL.

people….this game tells us nothing. it is an intra-squad scrimmage that has now, thanks to the media, been turned into an over-hyped “preseason” game.

go to the game if you can….enjoy seeing football….and the nice spring weather….and quit wringing your hands about what will happen in the future. we won’t know what this team is made of until december.

However, in the spirit of the post….I will say that there is one thing I would like to see…A MASSIVE FIGHT BREAK OUT ON THE FIELD. Someone hits someone else too hard and the players start fighting.

That, too me would mean that the intensity level is where it needs to be…and might just signify that the lace panties have been stowed away.

But then, we can’t have such displays on national tv, can we? Just think of the repercussions…

The mighty Herbstreit, one of college football’s great triumverant from mount ESPN, will pronounce that the georgia program has some serious discipline issues and this will cause him to put us even farther below his beloved buckeyes in his preseason vote. That might just end georgia football right there.

We will lose recruits by the thousands….gasp…they would not want to play football at a school that puts a premium on toughness and intensity….

Dr. Adams will hold a national press conference with Damon Evans to issue a public apology (anyone want to bet that Smiling Mike gets his mug on ESPN…it was probably part of the deal)

CMR would say that this fight was definately not in the gameplan, and that the entire team will be disciplined by not allowing them to participate in their monday night knitting session.

Injuries would decimate the DL,LB,OL positions. Several players would be out for the season with stubbed toes and bruises. Georgia coaches would then need to ask the NCAA if they could have some “loaners” from Clarke Central and Athens Academy.

Urban Meyer would stage an even bigger fight during FU’s spring practice….if the fight wasn’t big enough, he would have his players run stadium steps until they puked.

Paul johnson would watch the fight on tape to see who got beat up the worst. No doubt this person would be a defensive lineman or defensive back. He would then set his gameplan up to focus on this weakness.

Les Miles would study the affects that having a fight would have on his preseason ranking, and based upon that study, determine if having a fight would be in his best interest for positioning himself to play for the BCS championship.

Lane Kiffin would call a press conference to say that he has had so many fights in practice this year that the UFC is considering opening up a training camp in Knoxville.

And finally, somewhere in Heaven, a certain bald headed man would look down on the fight, pull the cigar out of his mouth, smile, and say, thats it boys….GATA!


April 10th, 2009
10:14 am

lakerat — Nice try on trying to pose as a frustrated Dawg fan. You are an idiot if you have never heard of Carlton Thomas — who played in the Under-Armour All-American game on ESPN as a High School Senior. Obviously, you do not follow college football, so it would wise to keep your postings to a minimum, lest you show your ignorance further.


April 10th, 2009
10:34 am

To the folks complaining about recruits leaving the state… need to remember, that UGA cannot get ALL the players from Georgia. Throw in GT and the two together COULD NOT get all the 1-A players from Georgia. Just chalk it up to good High School players and leave it at that.

That said, looks like a great weekend for the GDAY game….


April 10th, 2009
10:34 am

I think Percy could definitely have an impact in a role similar to Jerrious Norwood. He probably will not be touching the ball more than 10-15 times a game. Jerrious has crazy speed, like Harvin, and can take it to the house at any time. But every time he gets tackled, I wonder if he will get up missing a limb.

Charlotte Dawg

April 10th, 2009
10:34 am

Is it really a good idea to have D. Jackson playing in this full contact scrimmage right after he’s just been medically cleared? Shouldn’t we ease him in a bit more before throwing him in with the defense?

I’m just saying that we might need him down the stretch and it might be better to just to run fullbacks for this over-hyped event and stay as healthy as we can.

Bo Williams

April 10th, 2009
10:43 am

I know this can be perceived as being negative, but really, do UGA fans not have a life outside of football? Or is the yearly beatdown in round-ball so devastating, that they seek to lose themselves in “what can possibly be in next year’s football team.” Get a life, smell the roses. Don’t lock yourself in Stanford Stadium. UNC fans, for example, come to their Spring Game if they get the urge, or if there is nothing better to do in the Carolina mountains or at the beach. But most likely they are still enthrawled in basketball. And our fans don’t jump on the basketball bandwagon in the Fall until football season is over. We love our fb as much as UGA does. And you can count on Kennan Stadium being full the first football game, just like Stanford. Our fans and students simply have interests outside of the sports arena.


April 10th, 2009
10:55 am

JT -

Never said I was a “frustrated” Dawg fan – I am, however, a frustrated UGA season ticket holder and Hartmann fund contributor.

The only thing I heard going into spring practice at UGA was the competition between King and Samuel would not be competition since Samuel was hurt and the position was Caleb’s to lose. Then, the last I heard was they have a fullback (Munzenmeir) running at tailback and is causing a stir; then we hear about Thomas – and no, I was not familiar with a player 2 years removed from HS who has not even seen the field. And, at 5′ 7″, it is not too likely that he will see it much anytime soon once he plays against a “real” SEC defense – though I will admit that the kid from Oregon or Oregon State at that size was quite good last year. Only time will tell.

And I have season tickets to Clemson and GT, too, so I am really just a fan of local college football, though my UGA graduated kid does not like to hear me speak of the North Avenue Trade School (I only have those season tickets so I can see the UGA and Clemson games – plus get extra UGA game tickets to scalp and pay for my GT tickets).

Finally, with all that is happening this weekend, does anybody REALLY think that there will be 30,000 in the stands this Saturday?


April 10th, 2009
11:01 am

Sorry for this pitiful question, but what is the TV listing? Hospital stay has interfered with my UTD knowledge. Please help me out! Thanks!


April 10th, 2009
11:05 am

Bo Williams, thanks for the comments and input but there is just one small problem: Nobody gives a good holy crap what interests UNC fans. Not a soul. Get over yourself and have a wonderful day doing whatever it is that interests you. Good grief, you ACC fans sure are high on yourselves.

I disgress. If Lakerat is a Georgia fan then I am Elvis freaking Presley. That’s all I have to say about that. You can smell this hater’s routine from a mile away.


April 10th, 2009
11:20 am

Huh? Then you ain’t nothin’ but a hound dawg! And your nose ain’t too good if you are a Dawg cause you are smelling the wrong stuff!!!


April 10th, 2009
11:20 am

My concern about Joe Cox is that his arm wasn’t strong at all as a RF Freshman when he played a little. Granted it is two years later and that is something that can be improved on… I like his leadership and loyalty and I know he has some talent. When he played he seemed to throw the passes over 30 yards up for grabs as wounded ducks.

I’m not bashing him and I believe/hope that he will improve and be able to run the offense well with what he has around him. He won’t be asked to take too many shots down field which I’m guessing is still not his strength.

I liked Stafford a lot, but he didn’t have much accuracy on his long passes last year. Stafford could deliver a strike on the medium range passes and I’m hoping Cox is 90% as good at that.

Sanford Drive

April 10th, 2009
11:50 am

You don’t have to have a strong arm to be a great college team. Just ask John Parker Wilson. That kid is terrible, but he had an hour-and-a half to dump off a ten yard pass because his O-line was so good. Cox (or whoever) will be fine.


April 10th, 2009
11:56 am

Carlton Thomas – #8 RB on espn’s rankings two years ago.

Only reason why you didn’t know about him is we also signed the #5 RB that year Richard Samuel.

Its similar to Mettenburg – the kid is the #14 QB in the nation. There are a ton of teams in the SEC and ACC who would kill to have a QB that highly rated on their squad. Too bad he’s the 4th lowest rated QB on the UGA roster…

Dawgilama Deux

April 10th, 2009
12:02 pm

Lakerat, the G-Day Game is designed to stack the #1 Offense against the #1 Defense. And, it’s like that throughout Spring practice. So, your assertion that #1’s battle #2’s is incorrect. As for the season, you are correct. Your #1 offense/defense get’s looks from the Scout Team (usually comprised of #2’s, #3’s, and #4’s) emulating the opposing team’s various schemes.

As for Carlton Thomas, any real fan knows plenty about him. He was very highly recruited and he’s coming of a redshirt. This is the exact same scenario that played out for Knowshon. Knowshon got the same practice-hype as Thomas. Would you have made the same comments about Knowshon? I’m certainly not saying Thomas is Knowshon, but the scenarios are similar. AND, you really show your ignorance by measuring Thomas’ effectiveness by his physical stature. Ever heard of Darren Sproles? How bout Chris Rainey, Jeffrey Demps, and Brandon James for Florida? They’re good enough to start for the National Champions. Don’t be stupid, lakerat.


April 10th, 2009
12:08 pm

d11, that was the best comment of the day. I do like that Buck, but if I heard about beenie weenie one more time………..

Its probably more fun to predict the 5 things we will see in here AFTER the G-day game.

I would think a heavy dose of cliches’ are going to be in order.


April 10th, 2009
12:32 pm

There is a lot of hatin’ going on on this board. But the worst kind of poster is not the haters, but the dumb haters. Like Braveshater. Hey BH, We are all sorry that you havent gotten laid in 6 months and that you cant afford season tickets even while living at home with your Mom, but take your anger somewhere else and pls spare us your displayed ignorance. Everyone who reads your post is just a bit dumber for having done so. I think Tech is looking for some fans like you.

Corrine Brown (D) FL

April 10th, 2009
12:41 pm

Is Coarch Meyers gunna be at da G-GAME? What bout Percy Harvey?



April 10th, 2009
12:45 pm

No way Drew Butler deserved a scholarship . Been watching him in pregame for 2 years. My daughter can punt better than that. Don’t you remember the media push by his


April 10th, 2009
12:53 pm

lakerat, unless you’re a freak of nature, you have 2 ears and 1 mouth. Please use them proportionately.

Bo Williams, your comments are borderline sacrilegious. For your penance, throw 5 Hail Marys and send $1000 to the UGA Athletic Association.

uganda fan

April 10th, 2009
12:55 pm

The article in the Athens says Butler wants to be better than Mimbs . No way…leg is not strong enough. I predict a mid 35 yard avg for him. Remember his dad kicked from a 2 inch block in college. Coutu was better than Butler. No way Drew can come close to the avgs at UGA set by Andrews, Walden, and

big dawg

April 10th, 2009
12:59 pm

man, hearing from some of these so called dawg fans is really depressing…i can hear it now come sat night….if the O plays good, the defense must suck and vice-versa…look people,its just a scrimmage game, the point is to try and find a few diamonds in the rough, they already know,for the most part, who will be where come fall, despite what they’re telling the media…they’re not gonna come out and say just yet who’s starting where. as a coach, you’ve got to keep ALL THE KIDS thinking that they have a chance to play. kids are very sensitive human beings, we all were at one time!!

as far as those concerned about cox at qb, don’t be…i for one kinda like having a 23 yr old running the offense.. i will say this, one thing i’m looking for is dropped passes, or hopefully lack thereof. over the last few yrs, man have we dropped some balls..

and yes, the defense will be much better this year,no worries there.

big dawg

April 10th, 2009
1:02 pm

i agree with ya on Butler..another wasted scholly was for Bryce Ros…but, remember, daddy donates alot of both cases,,and it is a business!


April 10th, 2009
1:05 pm

For a university that supposedly hates everything ESPN, you sure do go out of the way to get them to expose you (whine about the lack of Moreno hurdling highlights, bring GameDay to athens, Damon Evans wanting to televise the spring game).


April 10th, 2009
1:08 pm



go gators

April 10th, 2009
1:10 pm

Here comes the debut of Turnover Cox. I can’t wait to play that boy, so we can rack up 50+ points w/ our defense alone. He’s a horrible, horrible quarterback and Georgia will suck this year.


April 10th, 2009
1:14 pm

Dawgilama Deux -

Not meaning to be stupid, but sometimes I just appear that way. I guess I should live by the old adage be silent and be thought stupid, rather than try to write objectively and prove myself stupid, or something like that.

However, in my defense, while I am old, and the G-day game does try to play 1 v 1, it is NOT 1 v 1 the whole time during all of the pre G-Day scrimmages. The reason is that you WANT to instill confidence in your offense and defense and that is why you play 1 v 2/3, etc. Plus, in the case of UGA, with all of the injuries we have had and are still incurring, you do not put your best players intentionally in harms way during the scrimmages – 11 on 11, full speed to the ground is tough enough when playing 2nd stringers, and it is during those times when injuries mostly occur.

RE: Carlton and other smallish backs, he has yet to prove himself. You brought up Knowshon, so I will respond. All through his RS year CMR talked about possibly bringing him in to play; he did not, but the thought was there, especially after Thomas Brown went down with an injury late in the season. Obviously, however, there was no thought about bringing Carlton up, even after King was proving to be not so spectacular; so, even though he may have been hyped in HS, and may still prove to be great, he was not on the radar or under consideration for playing time at all last year. Hence my comment that he came out of no where.

My only point, which seems to have been missed by everyone re: my lack of “prior” knowledge of Thomas, is that before the spring started he was NOT on the radar (all the talk was about King and Samuels and whoever is coming in in the fall, and then Munzenmeir started playing well as a running back), but now Carlton seems to be the “go to guy”; as mentioned earlier, only time will tell.

Regarding those other “small” guys you mentioned, Sproles has done well; the 3 FL guys are not all that, or else it would not take 3 of them to play one position, even if they are effective – their effectiveness is more a result of the system rather than, necessarily, their abilities.


April 10th, 2009
1:16 pm

Bulldawg nation! We will be ready to play football this year trust me. We’ll be night and day compared to last year. Are comfort level we be back to normal. Are O-line will dominate again and i see us having a year like 2007. Decent start, strong finish. especially with the bye week right before we play those banged up lizards. Revenge in the flats will taste so nice. GGGOOOOOO DAWGS SIC EM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dawgilama Deux

April 10th, 2009
1:42 pm

Lakerat, sorry I called you stupid…it was unnecessary.