(Click here for lots of notes from last night’s Greater Atlanta Bulldog Club meeting.)
Georgia linebacker Akeem Dent, a projected starter, had surgery early this morning on an injured toe and is expected to be sidelined for four to six weeks, UGA said.
That timeline means Dent will miss most, if not all, of preseason practice and makes him questionable for the Sept. 4 season opener against Louisiana-Lafayette.
Georgia said Dent injured his left big toe in an off-field accident last week. Details on the injury were not released.
Dent had outpatient surgery performed at St. Mary’s Hospital in Athens by orthopedic physician Dr. Joe Johnson, the UGA football team’s foot and ankle specialist.
The surgery came on the morning after coach Mark Richt told the Greater Atlanta Bulldog Club that the team seemed set to enter preseason camp “the healthiest we’ve been since I’ve been at Georgia.”
Dent, a senior from Atlanta, came out of spring practice No. 1 on Georgia’s depth chart at strong-side inside linebacker. which Georgia calls the “Mike” linebacker. Sophomore Mike Gilliard and senior Akeem Hebron were Nos. 2 and 3 on the depth chart behind Dent at that position.
At the weak-side inside-linebacker spot, called the “Mo” position, redshirt sophomore Christian Robinson emerged from spring practice as the starter, with junior Marcus Dowtin No. 2 and junior Richard Samuel, a converted tailback, No. 3.
Dent’s injury will lead to some shuffling between the two inside-linebacker spots in preseason practice, which begins next week. If Dent misses the season opener, Robinson and Dowtin likely would start at the two ILB positions.
Dowtin started four games last season, including the wins over Georgia Tech in the regular-season finale and Texas A&M in the Independence Bowl. Dowtin was third on the team in tackles for the season with 57, more than any other returning player.