ATHENS – Thursday night’s post-practice interviews brought upbeat assessments of two key components of the Georgia football team: its attitude and its defense.
“I think the guys that are here and that are playing right now and that coach [Todd] Grantham has trust in are those guys that stayed positive and kept working,” Robinson said. “Our whole thing is just being intense and doing what you’re supposed to, and I think the guys we have out there at this point are those guys who will make those plays and do what they’re told.
“I mean [if you have] a cancerous attitude, if you don’t have the right attitude, if you’re a ‘me’ guy –- we can’t have that. . . . I think the guys we have right now are the guys that are going to do it right, and you don’t have to worry about having off-the-field issues, things like that. The guys that are here, that are going to stay here, that are doing the right thing — we don’t have to worry about. And if they do [wrong], they know the consequences.”
Robinson suggested an issue with “people talking down” in the locker room last year.
“It’s a general attitude,” he said. “I think that at this point the guys we have are going to talk positive. There are going to be days you’re tired, you don’t want to be out there, it’s hot and the coaches are on you, and I think everybody is mature enough in this group that when you go out there it’s time to work and [coaches] are going to push you and you just got to deal with it.
“I think the guys we have here . . . know how to contribute to the team where it’s not all about themselves. I think we have guys that care about each other.”
“You can already see the kids are getting better at … the technique of their job, of their position,” Richt said. “You’ve always got to learn what to do first, and then you’ve got to learn how to do it well. Last year there was a whole lot of time spent on just knowing what to do, and now that they have a better idea of what to do, they’re learning how to do it better. So techniques are improving. I think that’s the biggest thing I see defensively.
“And they are playing faster. They are playing with a little more certainty as to what they’re doing, so they’re able to turn it loose a little bit better.”
Reflecting on last season, “I don’t know if we ever turned it loose as a [defensive] group,” Richt said. “There were probably certain moments in time when it looked like we were getting it, but as an entire group, I don’t know if we ever played as fast as we hope we will this year. I think we’ll do better this year in that regard.”
– Tim Tucker, AJC