‘Academic issues’ sideline UGA’s Branden Smith (PLUS: another AD applicant)

ATHENSBranden Smith — expected to contribute to Georgia’s football team on defense, offense and special teams — is not currently practicing with the Bulldogs because he is “working through some academic issues,” coach Mark Richt said Monday.

Richt said the situation will be resolved “soon –- by the end of the week.”

Asked if he expects Smith back with the team, Richt would only repeat: “Branden is working through some academic issues right now.” Richt wouldn’t say what the “academic issues” are.

Smith, a sophomore from Atlanta, was not on the field for either of Monday’s two practices. He participated in Georgia’s first few practices of preseason camp last week but is believed to have missed practices on Friday and Saturday.

He would be a big loss for the Bulldogs.

As a freshman last season, he played in 13 games, seeing action in all facets of the game.

On special teams, he returned 16 kickoffs for 279 yards, a 17.4-yard average. On offense, he lined up occasionally in various spots — running back, quarterback and wide receiver — and rushed for 209 yards on 17 carries, including touchdown runs of 61 yards against South Carolina and 52 yards against Tennessee Tech.  And on defense, his primary role, he showed promise at cornerback.

He entered preseason camp in close competition with senior Vance Cuff for a starting spot at one corner.

Smith is the only player facing academic issues, Richt said.

Another AD applicant

Chris Welton, a sports marketing executive who was a starting defensive back on Georgia’s 1980 national championship team, confirmed that he has added his name to the list of applicants for UGA’s athletic-director position.

Welton’s application was submitted after the 49 that were revealed last week in response to an open-records request by the AJC.

Welton, who has finance and law degrees from UGA, was an associate at Atlanta law firm King & Spalding before an executive position with the Atlanta Olympics led to a career in sports marketing. Welton created a company that became the marketing agency for the International Olympic Committee, then sold that company to the IOC in 2004. He is now president of Helios Partners, an Atlanta-based sports marketing firm.

Welton wrote in his application letter that UGA “has only grown in stature and quality” since his days as a student there.

“Nonetheless, the University faces a number of issues relating to athletics requiring attention and skilled management,” Welton wrote. “While the Athletic Association has been extremely successful from a financial perspective, legitimate concerns exist regarding the performance of certain teams, academic performance of athletes and off-field behavior of athletes in particular.”

Etc.

Linebacker Richard Samuel and safety Quintin Banks missed Monday’s football practices. Banks is “day-to-day” with a swollen knee and Samuel might be out “a week or two” with an injured leg, Richt said. He didn’t have specifics of Samuel’s injury. . . . The Bulldogs on Monday held their only two-a-day drills scheduled for this preseason. The final half hour of the afternoon session was in a heavy rain. . . . Georgia’s first scrimmage of the preseason is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

167 comments Add your comment

hs

August 9th, 2010
7:10 pm

Palm City DAWG

August 9th, 2010
7:12 pm

OK, let’s not panic. Brandon will be back and will have a hell of a season.

TampaGator

August 9th, 2010
7:16 pm

Are summer classes at Georgia ending about now? He probably has to pass a class and is in the dorm working on it right now…at least I hope he is. Good, talented player…and I hope it works out well for him and Georgia fans.

Damon E

August 9th, 2010
7:20 pm

Richt needs to call Jim Harrick Jr. for ideas on some mickey mouse exam to keep this player eligible! Hurry—get his number from google and get that eligibility back!

dentaldawg

August 9th, 2010
7:20 pm

if it is academics, then he needs to man up, study hard, and not let down his team.

Octavious,Dontavious and Rantavious

August 9th, 2010
7:25 pm

uh oh………..

CONFEDERATE DAWG

August 9th, 2010
7:29 pm

UH OH! AGREED
DAG GUMIT

run the ball

August 9th, 2010
7:29 pm

In 3…2…1…Dawgs lose lineman for the season.

Hobnail Boot

August 9th, 2010
7:32 pm

Not what I wanted to hear….

TDone

August 9th, 2010
7:32 pm

Question on Smith’s Final Exam, “How many yards on football field?”

Hobnail Boot

August 9th, 2010
7:34 pm

Man, we need all of our CB’s. Don’t want to jump to conclusions but this is not what we need.

CONFEDERATE DAWG

August 9th, 2010
7:35 pm

DAG GUMIT!
TAMPAGATOR WHY BEING SO CLASSY? OR YOUR BEING SARCASTIC?

jbts30228

August 9th, 2010
7:40 pm

TampaGator is always classy. In my opinion one of the best posters on these blogs.

tampadawg86

August 9th, 2010
7:40 pm

Dawg fans this is not good news if we lose him. He is a talented CB and just talented athlete. Lets hope the team rallies around him and help him get back on the field. This is a team sport. They should pull together when one struggles in their studies!! Goodluck Branden Smith! first and foremost get that college education buddy! Go Dawgs!

SD Dawg

August 9th, 2010
7:44 pm

@TDone: how many yards on on a football field?

@Run the ball: your right, we are due to lose a lineman or two or ten. just a matter of time

I would say I am shocked, but I am not. As fine of an institution as we have I am am forever amazed at how some of the guys struggle in school. Let’s be real, you know his schedule isn’t that difficult. Not really any excuses.

Roscoe P. Coltrane

August 9th, 2010
7:52 pm

I watched football Saturdays in the South hosted by Tim Brando yesterday

I found it very interesting that the running back from VT had 90 yes 90 pair of sneakers he collects in his closet not including all the clothes he had as well and I do mean a bunch a clothes.

Now 90 pairs of shoes and they were not the cheap kind you find at Walmart, priced at $80 comes out to $7200

Someone please tell me how this kid affords $7200 in shoes not including all the clothes he had when he does not hold a job and oh by the way, he bragged about how he loves to go shopping all the time

Where is the NCAA investigation on this

R

August 9th, 2010
7:53 pm

one thing that I don’t want to see Smith do this year is return Kicks. go dawgs.

CONFEDERATE DAWG

August 9th, 2010
7:54 pm

MAYBE CAMPS AND STUFF GIVE HIM SNEAKERS FOR FREE? I THINK THEY ARE ALLOWED TO DO THAT

Branden Smith next stop will be....

August 9th, 2010
7:56 pm

Georgia Military School!!! Just like all UGA Leghumpers that can’t make the grade.

gadawg

August 9th, 2010
7:56 pm

Roscoe the kid might actually have parents who give him an allowance. You don’t have to look far to find spoiled college kids.

John

August 9th, 2010
8:00 pm

Give the kid the benefit of the doubt. Coach Richt will make sure he is a STUDENT athlete.

R

August 9th, 2010
8:01 pm

hey tech fans, 30-24

superJACKET

August 9th, 2010
8:03 pm

.
Nesbitt for Heisman
.

no matter

August 9th, 2010
8:03 pm

@R…you might not…see him return…

Dawgtime

August 9th, 2010
8:04 pm

and the dawgs have dominated GT for 5 decades…..Calculate those numbers and come up with some pathetic excuses.

BAMADAWG

August 9th, 2010
8:04 pm

Tamps Gator, You are the classiest Gator Fan ever on our blogs. Always a good positive blog. But that don’t stop me from being a Gator hater

Dawgtime

August 9th, 2010
8:06 pm

Why do GT fans read UGA blogs? Well it’s kind of like ugly men buying Playboy magazines. You can look but you will never stand a chance. Go DAWGS.

R

August 9th, 2010
8:07 pm

no matter, i m guessing your a tech fan so you might not see GT beat UGA again for a long time. people are figuring out PJ’s offense. like i’ve always said, talent will eventually beat schemes.

wolfman

August 9th, 2010
8:07 pm

They are just now discovering that he has “academic issues”?

GADAWG88

August 9th, 2010
8:08 pm

I’m nervous… We need him…

GATOR CHOMP

August 9th, 2010
8:08 pm

Why am I not surprised here? Saint Richt knew this kid was a dumbazz when he recruited him.Thats why the MIGHTY GATORS never offered him.I will bet anyone of u losers that u mutts will finish no higher than 4th in the division put up or shut up cowards.GATORS or DIE!!!

I Could Have Put Some Lame Name Here

August 9th, 2010
8:09 pm

I guess it’s out of the question that the poor kids family can afford to give him money for shoes and clothes.

Contrary to what you may think, not all families of athletes are poor.

Athens, Georgia

August 9th, 2010
8:09 pm

… Joshua Nesbitt for Heisman …

luke08

August 9th, 2010
8:11 pm

Hey Tech fans 8 out 0f 9, stop talking!

I Could Have Put Some Lame Name Here

August 9th, 2010
8:11 pm

I’m sure that he will get his self together, it will be for him and not for teh team as it should be. The benefit of the team will be a secondary benefit.

Score Check

August 9th, 2010
8:12 pm

Yes the Jim Harrick Jr era was a mess and an embarrassment. That being said I can assure you that comparing P.E. Exams with normal class exams is a bit of a joke anyway. Let me get this straight: Scholarship Basketball players who had been playing the game since they were what 8, 9, 10 years old have a joke of a final exam in a P.E. Basketball class. And the nerds are still talking about it. Wow. It shouldn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out those players already knew the fundamentals of the sport.

I once had a P.E. class on Bait & Fly casting and never got near the water. OMG!! Another academic scandal. Alert the Media!!

R

August 9th, 2010
8:12 pm

leave it to gaytor chomp to something unintelligent. hey moron look at this you dumba$$.

http://rivals.yahoo.com/uga/football/recruiting/player-Branden-Smith-76867;_ylt=AmtDtCov12DKvYa9MbJuUsgGuZB4

R

August 9th, 2010
8:14 pm

looks like fla did offer him YOU MORON!!!!!!

Dawghater

August 9th, 2010
8:15 pm

You mean he couldn’t take that basketball class that had the hard exam? How many halves are in a game! What is a 3 point shot worth! Dawg fans don’t like it much when others read how lame their football players academics are! Try looking up the degrees these kids are taking other than the QB, punter and field goal kicker! Study hard? Give me a break. Heck, most could just show up for these classes and pass!

R

August 9th, 2010
8:17 pm

gaytor chomp, i know one thing for sure, CMR doesn’t recruit the type of players that steal a dead girl’s credit card then charge $5,000 on it. classy move there

Hey, Gator Chump

August 9th, 2010
8:22 pm

Here’s a list of schools that offered Branden Smith a Scholarship:
Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Michigan, Notre Dame, South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia.

You see Gator Chump: Urban Crier and the gay_turds offered him as well.

http://rivals.yahoo.com/uga/football/recruiting/player-Branden-Smith-76867;_ylt=ApmBCxW9nBuT63kdbC7ZlysGuZB4

Durango Dawg

August 9th, 2010
8:29 pm

This Kid should have tutors galore, to help him pass.
In this day and age of mega million dollar college football, when you have a player of this calibur, Coaches should never let a player, fail a class.
That being said I guess they can’t be a baby sitter 24/7 either.
Smith get your acdemics in order, please.

Football Fan

August 9th, 2010
8:36 pm

Would Georgia fans spelling his name Brandon please spell it Branden? Geez.

dds3434@aol.com

August 9th, 2010
8:40 pm

I just find it hard to believe that people’s lives are so empty that they get their kicks from posting trash talk on opposing teams blogs. Unbelievably pathetic and sad.

Hattie

August 9th, 2010
8:52 pm

Question on Smith’s Final Exam, “How many yards on football field?”

Does that include the end zones? :-)

ga gator

August 9th, 2010
8:53 pm

No panic, that’s why most kids take classes during the summer. Hope he plays well in all games except against the Gators, but from all I’ve read he is a quality kid.

AltamahaDawg

August 9th, 2010
8:53 pm

TDone how ironic to try to joke about a stupid question but end up just showing your ignorance in the process. How many Yards? is that long, wide, square???are they just laying around in a pile?

Santa Cruz CA Bulldog

August 9th, 2010
8:56 pm

Branden Smith, study hard and ask for help.
I remember my Freshman year, soooo many temptations and you have to learn, college isn’t high school.

dagnabit

August 9th, 2010
8:58 pm

dds; Iagree. Go over to a Tech blog and read the number of dawgturd comments.

dawgfan

August 9th, 2010
8:59 pm

Of course the AJC writes of a “big loss” when there has been absolutely zero evidence that UGA will lose anything. Its just as plausible that he’s studying for a big test and will be back on the field as soon as its over. But that doesn’t stir the pot and get the sad and pathetic haters hacking away at their keyboards does it?

Techies can say what they want about me, but I would NEVER wish any kind of bad on one of their players like they do ours. Its YOU I hate Techies, not your players. Tech fans are dirtbags.