Athens — Georgia’s defensive players seem excited and energized –- but still pretty much in the dark –- about the transformation to new coordinator Todd Grantham’s 3-4 scheme.
Some defensive tackles are wondering if they’ll become defensive ends, and some defensive ends are wondering if they’ll become linebackers.
“All we know is, we are putting on an audition for everything,” Cornelius Washington said. “So we do the best we can and let the coaches make the coaching decisions.”
Washington appeared in all 13 games (and started one) at defensive end last season, showing a knack for pressuring the quarterback. He seems to have the makings of an outside linebacker in the 3-4.
But he said he hasn’t been told what position he’ll play or when a determination will be made.
He added that such uncertainty could be good for the team right now.
“I feel like it lets everybody have an audition, lets everybody at least be able to show what they can do,” Washington said. “I don’t feel like this season there is such a thing as a freshman player because everybody has an audition and I guess in a sense everybody is a freshman.”
His guess is that a number of players will get looks at a number of different spots during spring practice, which will begin March 4 and run through the G-Day Game on April 10.
“I feel like we got a lot of guys who can do a multitude of different things, so I’d say [Grantham] is going to try us out at a whole lot of different things and see who fits the best,” Washington said. “We have a whole lot of guys who are willing to do whatever it takes. I just feel like we got to get the job done, and [the coaches] will make the decisions they have to make.”
Whatever his spot in the 3-4, Washington is a fan of the alignment. “It makes it harder for the quarterback to see what’s coming,” he said.
Washington, by the way, said his weight is up to 256 from the 224 at which he arrived in Athens.
A few other things:
– 99Dawg asked on the blog yesterday for an update on offensive lineman Trinton Sturdivant, who for the second consecutive year is rehabbing from season-ending knee surgery. Offensive line coach Stacy Searels said last week that his understanding is that Sturdivant’s rehab is “coming along great” and that he’ll be “ready to go” in the fall.
– Wednesday night’s 82-63 basketball loss at Auburn dropped Georgia to 0-8 in true road games this season. If you missed it, Travis Leslie had a double-double in the first half and finished with 19 points and a career-high 17 rebounds. But Trey Thompkins, who entered the game as the SEC’s second leading scorer and fourth leading rebounder, had more fouls (5) than shot attempts (4), fouled out with 8 ½ minutes to play and finished with just six points and four rebounds in 13 minutes of action. The Dogs won’t win many games, if any, with Thompkins on the bench.
– From earlier today: New linebackers coach Warren Belin’s salary.
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