No football practice Wednesday. Georgia practices Thursday and Friday, then completes spring ball with the G-Day game on Saturday. Meanwhile, some items from a full notebook:
At least two Georgia coaches, Mark Richt and Rodney Garner, have visited Montez Robinson, the linebacker dismissed from the team on Sunday, in Clarke County Jail.
“He’s just hurting. He’s suffering,” Richt said of Robinson. “But we’re helping him understand that he can still have a bright future from this point forward if he does what he’s supposed to do, what he needs to do.”
Said Garner, the assistant coach who recruited Robinson to Georgia: “I’m disappointed [and] hurt, but like I told him [Monday], he can’t let this define him. He made a mistake, he’s got to deal with it, and he’s got to learn from it. He still can achieve every goal he has.”
Robinson was kicked off the team after being arrested Sunday on a misdemeanor charge of simple battery/family violence, his third arrest in five months. A judge set bond at $10,000 on the charge, but Robinson will remain in jail at least until a probation-violation hearing.
Both Richt and Garner said Robinson has the ability to resume a major-college football career elsewhere at some point.
“Obviously, he’s got to take a detour route to get there, but if he’ll keep his nose clean from this day forward, he’ll be able to play at pretty much any school he wants to when he comes out of junior college,” Garner said. “That’s what he’s got to do -– focus on getting his life together, getting his academics together, doing the right thing, learning from this.”
Garner said Tuesday night that the first-team defensive line at the moment has DeAngelo Tyson at nose, Demarcus Dobbs at right end and Abry Jones at left end. Garner added that his group also must get “quality snaps” from backups Kiante Tripp and Brandon Wood.
It’s been a particularly challenging spring for the D-line, which is transitioning to the new 3-4 alignment with only one player (Dobbs) with prior UGA starting experience.
“We’re making some progress . . . but we’ve still got a ways to go,” Garner said. “We’ve got to improve fundamentally. We’ve got to continue to develop players, and we’ve got to continue to develop them within the system we’re putting in.
“That’s the biggest challenge for my guys -– none of them have ever been, I guess, starters other than Dobbs, and he’s in new waters. DeAngelo and Abry, they’ve been role guys. Now you got to step up to the plate and be the guy. It’s different being a guy and the guy.”
Garner got a reminder Tuesday of all the experience lost on the D-line from last season’s team.
“Geno [Atkins] happened to be out there at practice,” Garner said, “and I was, like, ‘As bad a headache as you were, I’d sure love to have that headache back.’”
Richt had some major praise for cornerback Vance Cuff’s spring.
“He has gained a lot of confidence and has made a bunch of great plays this spring,” Richt said Tuesday night. “I think he’s played the best of the corners in the spring.”
Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham seems increasingly intrigued by converted tailback Richard Samuel’s potential to contribute at inside linebacker this year.
“We’re really working to try to progress [Samuel] because he does show up as far as his ability to run and chase,” Grantham said. “We’re trying to work with him to see if we can find a role with him as we move forward with our team.”
Grantham said a key challenge for Samuel is “diagnosing blocking schemes.”
“He has a feel for where the ball is going, but is it a downhill run, is it a wide play?” Grantham said. “With Richard, it’s more the recognition of blocks and where I need to fit based upon the call. And that just comes with experience and reps.”
And finally, speaking of Georgia’s lack of depth at outside linebacker, Richt said: “If you’re a recruit and you want to play outside linebacker in a hurry, sign up. We need help.”
Click here for a story on Todd Grantham’s first spring in 12 years coaching in college.