Richt confirms Smith as punt returner (updated)

ATHENS — It was a good conversation piece for the off-season, but you can put aside the idea of A.J. Green as Georgia’s punt returner.

“As it turned out, Branden Smith looks to be our No. 1 [punt-return] guy right now and Carlton Thomas our No. 2,” coach Mark Richt said today. “A.J. can do it. There may come a situation where we say, ‘You know what, let’s put him back there and do it.’”

Or there may not.

Richt noted that punt returners can get “splattered” as soon as they catch the ball and that there’s risk of “an overzealous player deciding they’re going to knock out A.J. Green. So we’re not too thrilled to put him in that situation. If need be, he can do it, but as it turned out we feel Branden Smith is our best option there.”

Green, Georgia’s star receiver, said several times during the spring and summer that he would like to return punts, as he did in high school. But Green said last week that he expected Smith to win the job.

“He’s explosive, man,” Green said.

Smith, a sophomore from Atlanta, cheered the news that he will return punts.

“I’ve been wanting to play punt return ever since I got up here,” he said after practice Wednesday.

Smith said he takes a three-pronged approach to the job: “The No. 1 thing is catching the ball. No. 2 is holding on to the ball. And No. 3 is just do my thing. With my speed and the blocking up front, it should not be that hard.”

65 comments Add your comment

Pago Pago Dawg

September 1st, 2010
5:53 pm

We still think the gaytors will be tough even though Tebow is gone. They’re just re-load…don’t be fooled.

Clete

September 1st, 2010
5:54 pm

Clete

September 1st, 2010
5:54 pm

Clete

September 1st, 2010
5:55 pm

17 of 20

September 1st, 2010
5:55 pm

It doesn’t matter who is returning punts for Georgia, because they are Gator-Bait.

Mcdawghna

September 1st, 2010
5:55 pm

If he gets an opening he can outrun everyone in the stadium…..If he hangs on to the ball its probably a great move……

scdawg

September 1st, 2010
5:59 pm

RUN SMITH RUN

Between the Hedges

September 1st, 2010
6:01 pm

Has any one heard whats up with AJ and the NCAA. I read somewhere a family member confirmed he was at home but the NCAA has said nothing. just wondering Go DAWGS!

CONFEDERATE DAWG

September 1st, 2010
6:06 pm

IF IN DOUBT FAIR CATCH THAT BAD BOY AND KEEP THE D OFF THE FIELD!!!
COME ON DAWGS! LETS GET THEM GAYTORS!

11Dawg

September 1st, 2010
6:08 pm

I hope he’s gotten better at hanging on to the ball.

dawgfan

September 1st, 2010
6:09 pm

Between the Hedges, great question. I guess we’ll never hear anymore about it out of the AJC. I’m still waiting for Schultz’s update on the “dark cloud” hanging over UGA’s football program. I’ll probably be waiting awhile.

Washaun Ealey

September 1st, 2010
6:13 pm

We hit and run this state.

Oompa Loompa Dawg

September 1st, 2010
6:14 pm

Put that midget back there to receive punts. I hear he is pretty good at keeping low to the ground.

Between the Hedges

September 1st, 2010
6:14 pm

I think AJ is a great guy and would not lie about it, but taking this long concerns me.

dawgfan

September 1st, 2010
6:14 pm

There’s nothing dumber than a Georgia Bulldog.

metrodawg

September 1st, 2010
6:18 pm

BTH, I’m with you. Too much time for this investigation IMHO. This shouldve been resolved a while back. AJ wasn’t there, period. That seems like an open and shut case to me. Lets hope the stupid Fulmer Cup is not part of this issue and is biasing the ncaa.

Dances With Whiskey

September 1st, 2010
6:27 pm

What do UGA fans and GT fans have in common?

They are both obsessed with all things UGA!!! GATA DAWGS!!

Gratefuldawghead

September 1st, 2010
6:35 pm

AJ8 for Heisman

Nesbutt4Hyman

September 1st, 2010
6:36 pm

The only award Nesbutt will win is for having the fattest lips!!

Tech fans are so stupid and Islamic terrorists too!

Tide Roll

September 1st, 2010
6:39 pm

FIX THE OFFENSIVE LINE DAMN IT. All ya’ll talk about is how many starts they’ve had as if that makes them good. Jones, Davis and Boling don’t match up with SEC calibre defensive lineman in the red zone. At least use Bean on some short yardage stuff. This offensive line you’re bragging about got beat 49-10 vs. Fla.and completely dominated by Tenneesee. LOOK AT FLORIDA: NIXON, CARL JOHNSON, POUNCY, MAURICE HURT, GILBERT, and match them with DAVIS, GLENN, BURNETTE, ANDERSON, AND STURDIVANT. It’s so simple and yet you refuse do it. It was so simple to sign Cam Newton and develop Murray, and you won’t do it. So you let the kid go to Auburn and allow them to develop Barrett Trotter. Richt and Bobo are more interested in showing everyone what great QB coaches they are than winning ball games . It’ infuriating. How to ya’ll stand getting embarassed year after year. You had two first round draft picks in your backfield and we were up 31-0 at half! It’s your offensive line damn it.

46 out of 86

September 1st, 2010
6:52 pm

Gayter Football……The Tradition of Wake Forrest…….The Ego of Alabama.
Overrated Media Darlings. First SEC Title 1996….Big Mouth Cheats !

mickdog2010

September 1st, 2010
6:55 pm

dawgs vs bama for SEC!!!! 17 of 21 !!!!!

Champs

September 1st, 2010
6:58 pm

Tide Roll,

You are embarrassing yourself and all of us UA alumni and fans. This blog is about UGA’s punt return duties. What the hell do you keep babbling about? Please just stop. Branden Smith is likely the fastest guy in the SEC. If you can teach him to catch and hold the ball consistently, he’s the logical choice.

GTJedi

September 1st, 2010
7:03 pm

We are having a Yoda dress up contest on the GT campus Saturday if any UGA fans are interested?

Between the Bushes

September 1st, 2010
7:05 pm

What do UGA fans and GT fans have in common?

Neither went to UGA.

kb

September 1st, 2010
7:05 pm

Tide roll, same old tired comments. Dawgs 3-1 vs tide past 4 meetings 2 wins in Tuscaloosa.

Coastal Dawg

September 1st, 2010
7:07 pm

I think it’s hilarious on another article, when the defensive players make a mistake or dog it for a play, Coach Grantham yells at them ‘8 and 5′. Meaning that when they don’t play well it gets them to a record of 8-5. At least one team we play early in the season has its high water mark at 8 wins. All depends on your perspective.

Go Dawgs!

midland Dog

September 1st, 2010
7:12 pm

Tide Roll
Nobody gives a s—- about what you say! Are you on medication or do you need to be?

jack e. row

September 1st, 2010
7:19 pm

Tide roll, so you decided not to wait for a discussion on our excellent offensive line, and instead the blog is about returning punts! Do you even read the article or just jump on whatever opinion you think is more important! What a Maroon!!

Mike Unt

September 1st, 2010
7:29 pm

Tide Roll, let me guess…You would of played college ball if your high school coach didn’t hate you, right?

tide roll

September 1st, 2010
7:45 pm

i love all men..

GATOR SPIT

September 1st, 2010
7:45 pm

sew? god this is pathetic

GATOR SPIT

September 1st, 2010
7:46 pm

maybe more revealing!! Richt takes a pee pee along with Grantham at his side! i am soooooooooooo impressssssseddddddddd!

Bulldog huff

September 1st, 2010
7:52 pm

thats just tide trolls way of sayin ?Its great to be a gawga bulldog!!!Go dawgs!!

tide roll, everytime you come in here...

September 1st, 2010
7:53 pm

bringing the same ol crap in here it just makes you look dumb as hell. ( YOU NEED TO GET A LIFE !!!!!…..SERIOUSLY !!! What a moron you are. I hope they banned your sorry a$$ from this forum. My dog has better sense than you !!! what a piece of dirt you are.

gss303

September 1st, 2010
7:56 pm

SEC football is in a league of its own…..
no contenders anywhere

and that goes for all the Gaytors Jerks ...

September 1st, 2010
8:00 pm

out there too. What a bunch Dirt bags !!!!

Robert Hall (suspended 1 game only)

September 1st, 2010
8:34 pm

I smacked my woman up and sent her to Grady. I only got one game suspenshun. I be gettIn my management dugree an playin ugainst the a see see. Glad I be gettin my manugmint dugree.

RomeDawg

September 1st, 2010
9:09 pm

Tide Roll is all about the offensive line. I have seen other post about it. Kinda….odd. The “Washaun Ealey” message was pretty darn funny, though.

World Chumps Baby!

September 1st, 2010
9:22 pm

Who said inbreds and thugs are never winners….

Standings are final UGA takes the 2010 Trophy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

http://www.sportsargumentwiki.com/index.php?title=Fulmer_Cup

hunker down

September 1st, 2010
9:35 pm

boogity boogity boogity!

hunker down

September 1st, 2010
9:38 pm

roll tide is obsessed with bean Anderson

you say what?

September 1st, 2010
9:39 pm

You may be a fat A$$ Roll Tide… But your Mama’s a Dog!

Gators Rule the SEC East

September 1st, 2010
9:41 pm

Hey Doggies, just remember your days of almost reaching the top are over, you have no QB, no RB (unless he can bring his scooter on the field)…. all you have is a WR.

You will never be better than UF, so FU dogturds.

For all those touting how easy Urban is on the Gator players, get a life, your coach’s discipline is a freakin joke. He will bring down the hammer hard on players who will never see the field, but will only send a “message” to his starters that they are “AT LEAST” suspended for the game against sisters of the poor. Why even say “AT LEAST” when you mean “AT MOST” geeesh …. St. Richt is a joke.

Enjoy your title in the Fulmer Cup, UF didn’t even make the top 10…. you win doggies. Now go yak and lick it up you disgusting dog turds.

Go Gators….Chomp….Chomp….Chomp….

you say what?

September 1st, 2010
9:42 pm

You may be a PinHead Gator but your Mama’s a Dog!

Jeff in Calhoun

September 1st, 2010
10:06 pm

Sorry, but I can’t think of anything other than Kady Perry in that Teenage Dream video I just saw! LOL

UGA wears red panties

September 1st, 2010
10:14 pm

Unless Damons in the room

The Exterminator

September 1st, 2010
10:24 pm

Will someone please post something intelligent or illuminating?

fan

September 2nd, 2010
2:24 am

just please hold onto the ball!!! if he gets stronger he will be amazing.

tote that pill

September 2nd, 2010
2:36 am

I am very VERY excited about the idea of Smith returning punts…. just please PLEASE hold on to the rock!!