Notes: Dogs seek taller cornerbacks; Grantham praises Garner; full pads Saturday
(UPDATE: For a report on Saturday’s practice, please click here.)
There was no football practice Friday. The Dogs will hold their fourth session of spring ball Saturday in Sanford Stadium, their first in full pads. Meanwhile, a few notes and quotes:
- The overhaul of Georgia’s defensive staff and scheme naturally affects the type of players the Dogs are looking to recruit. “I mean, you got different body types, because you got to get outside linebacker types and your defensive end and nose types,” said Rodney Garner, defensive line coach and recruiting coordinator. He added that new defensive coordinator Todd Grantham and new defensive backs coach Scott Lakatos “like taller corners. So we want bigger corners, too. So it’s really just trying to find exactly what [Grantham] wants to fit his scheme.”
- Grantham said Garner, the only holdover from the previous defensive staff, “has meshed very well. Rodney is a conscientious guy. He’s worked hard to understand what we want to get taught. I think he works his guys extremely hard in practice. I think he has done a good job so far with the guys, and I have been pleased with the progress — not only him but, really, I’ve been pleased with the way the coaches have worked and the way the players have responded.”
- It takes good players to have a good defense, yes, “but everybody also has to understand their role,” Grantham said. “‘What is my role on the team? What do I do to contribute?’ Right now, everybody is working hard to define their role to me. They’re showing us their abilities. They’re showing us how much they want to play. They’re showing us how they can learn, showing us how they’ll hustle to the ball. Because to me we’re going to put guys out there who are physical and give effort. And if we do that, we’ll beat you.”
- It’s not just the players learning a new defensive scheme. None of the coaches — not Garner, not Lakatos, not Warren Belin — has ever coached in Grantham’s 3-4 system before. Said Garner: “Football is football, but it’s . . . definitely a much different scheme than what we did. The terminology is totally different. So it’s a lot to learn, a lot to grasp. We’re putting a lot in at a time, so it’s a lot for us [coaches] too. We’re trying to learn it and get it taught to our kids. We’ve got to get this package put in. Coach Grantham is going full speed. He’s trying to get everything in so we can be good at it. . . . We’re all in there trying to learn exactly . . . his terminology, how he wants to call it, everything.”
- Several of you have asked about Trinton Sturdivant’s comeback from his second torn ACL. He’s not participating in spring practice, but he is still expected to be back for preseason camp in August. Same goes for Justin Anderson and Tanner Strickland, missing the spring because of shoulder injuries.
- And to end on a positive note, Mark Richt had this to say after Thursday’s practice: “I’m really encouraged right now. It’s early, but I’m encouraged right now.”
If you missed it: Richard Samuel has changed positions . . . again.