Bulldogs are hit hard by injuries; Commings shifts to safety

ATHENS – Injuries have piled up for the Georgia football team, which continued spring practice Thursday with a number of key players sidelined.

Particularly hard hit were the inside-linebacker and safety positions.

At inside linebacker, projected starters Christian Robinson and Alec Ogletree missed the practice because of a concussion and a strained groin, respectively, and backup Michael Gilliard was out with a sprained knee.

At safety, Jakar Hamilton was sidelined with a concussion, Marc Deas with a tweaked hamstring and Bacarri Rambo with a previously reported sprained knee ligament.

The rash of injuries left the Bulldogs practicing with only two healthy scholarship inside linebackers, Richard Samuel and Brandon Burrows, and one healthy scholarship safety, Shawn Williams.

Coaches responded by shifting Sanders Commings, who started nine games at cornerback last season, to safety — at least for now and possibly for good. It’s a move that had been contemplated even before the injuries.

“The safety position is pretty low as far as depth,” Deas said Thursday night. “What we pretty much have now are the walk-ons and Shawn. . . . Sanders is new to it, so he’s learning plays and stuff. . . . I think he’s adjusted pretty well.”

On offense, tailback Washaun Ealey remained sidelined with a strained left hamstring. Ealey has missed the past five practices.

Rambo is not expected to return to practice this spring, and it is not clear when the others will be back.

Georgia said Robinson and Hamilton are “day to day” and Ogletree “out indefinitely.” Deas said he hopes to be back at practice by Monday, and UGA said Gilliard is expected back before the April 16 G-Day game, which completes spring practice. Ealey also could be back next week.

Outside linebacker Cornelius Washington chose to focus on the upside of the injury situation.

“It makes us better, I feel like, because it gives you opportunities to put guys in new places and see what they can do,” Washington said.  “Whenever you have an injury, another guy steps up and fills in the spot. It makes us communicate better because a new guy might not know this or that, so we’re all talking. That just builds habits. Later on, when the [first-teamers] get back, we should still communicate like that.”

Thursday’s practice was Georgia’s 10th of the allotted 15 this spring. Despite the extensive injuries at linebacker and safety, “the defense won” the practice, coach Mark Richt said in a statement. He didn’t meet with reporters.  The Bulldogs won’t practice Friday but will hold a closed scrimmage in Sanford Stadium on Saturday.

– Tim Tucker, AJC

164 comments Add your comment

rex

April 7th, 2011
8:19 pm

rex

April 7th, 2011
8:19 pm

my life’s ambitions are now complete

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

April 7th, 2011
8:23 pm

should be cause for concern, especially the concussions

Big Dawg

April 7th, 2011
8:24 pm

We seem to always have a lot of injuries…..

merbertmoover

April 7th, 2011
8:25 pm

im number 3! woohoo!

merbertmoover

April 7th, 2011
8:26 pm

dang…..on a separate note, a concussion? man that’s pretty brutal for spring ball. what happened tim?

Bobo, Bobo, a pirate's life for me

April 7th, 2011
8:27 pm

Tim,

I feel like every time UGA goes and hits in practice we tend to see a lot of injuries…Do other teams receive the amount of injuries the Dawgs tend to see throughout spring and summer practice?

zzggyy

April 7th, 2011
8:29 pm

Georgia said Robinson and Ogletree are “day to day” and Ogletree “out indefinitely.” ????

footballfan-365

April 7th, 2011
8:32 pm

uh oh some players are banged up here comes the negative comments and right after that here comes the folks who constantly remind us we lost to colorado and ucf!

footballfan-365

April 7th, 2011
8:36 pm

And before tide roll gets here we know uga missed out on a few lineman!

Old_School_FB

April 7th, 2011
8:47 pm

It probably goes back to UGA’s lack of a quality Strength and Conditioning program. Groin strains, hamstrings, etc…How in the world did UGA end up with a former video coordinator as the HSC??? All successful teams/programs are built in the weight room in the off-season. While LSU, Alabama, Tennessee and Florida are getting after it in the weight room with their respective strength coaches, what exactly is UGA doing?!?!?!

Dawgs eat their own poop

April 7th, 2011
8:47 pm

Looks like another 5-6 season for the Ole Miss of the SEC East.

ugab

April 7th, 2011
8:56 pm

does alabama and florida worry about a lil sprain. wtf. every year the same sht. pulled groins pulled hammys. it is called not being in shape and we have 2 rbs out. too little contact means go bak to acc

Tim Tucker

April 7th, 2011
8:56 pm

zzggyy: Yes, that’s what they said. Translation: “out indefinitely” is a bit worse than “day to day.”

It Ain't Rocket Science

April 7th, 2011
8:59 pm

It could just as easily point to the fact that they are going at it, too early or too hard in spring practice. I have read where the S and C program has come a long way from last year, so I kind of feel that is not the problem. If there is any positive side to these injuries, it is that none are career threatening and it could indicate the players are really working hard, so they do not have a repeat of last season. I think there are still 148 days until the season opener. I do not beleive it is a lack of conditioning for sure.

RabidDawgFan

April 7th, 2011
9:03 pm

We’ll be fine. It’s just spring ball. It isn’t as if we’ve lost these players in Fall Camp or anything. They’ll be back for fall practice and be ready to go when we face Boise State. They have PLENTY of time to get healthy and get their reps in.

ugab

April 7th, 2011
9:03 pm

THIS IS THE SEC. BALLS TO THE WALL. UGA IS NOT EVEN CLOSE. IT IS SAD TO BE A FAN. WE RECRIUT A BUNCH OF TES. WE RECRUIT A TB. WE NEED A F’ N FULLBAK. WTF IS GOIN ON IN ATHENS. WHEN IS THE LAST TIME WE RECRUITED A WHITE BOY. GA HAD ALOT OF TALENT, NO DOUBT. I WOULD RATHER HAVE SMART RECRUITS LIKE POLLACK AND GREEN. WE DID NOT NEED A RB OR A TE THIS YEAR. WE NEEDED A FULL BAK , LBS , OL AND DL,… MR RECRUITS A RB AND TE AND EXPECTS TO COMPETE. WE NEED OL AND DL. THAT IS THE SEC

cadawg

April 7th, 2011
9:05 pm

hamilton, ogletree, and deas need the reps. rambo and robinson know what to do; it’s just a matter of them staying healthy and going out there and doing it. we’ll be fine, and if we aren’t it isn’t because a few guys got banged up during spring ball.

@ugab: all the teams you’ve mentioned have injury issues of their own–same sort of stuff, too; hamstrings, tweaked knees, groin pulls… this is normal in spring ball, and i suspect the reason you think these problems are specific to our program is because ours is the only program you follow.

ugab

April 7th, 2011
9:06 pm

MR NEEDS TO LEARN THIS IS THE SEC. POWER FOOTBALL. LOOK AT AUS OL AND DL LAST YEAR. THEY DIDNT WORRY BOUT ANOTHER TE. WTF. RBS ARE GOOD WE NEED LINEMEN

Red

April 7th, 2011
9:15 pm

Just tells you how relentless they have been during practice. Concussions equal to hard hits. So the question is do we want these guys to hit hard and risk injury or cut back so everyone will be healthy come September? It’s a double edged sword but I’d rather for these guys to be relentless in finishing the drill through the 4th quarter and not be slumped over gasping for air.

thenumber34

April 7th, 2011
9:17 pm

Enter your c i was at practice today and you critics need to calm down. i came away feeling very encouraged about next year. the amount of talent and leadership I saw today surpasses what we ve had in recent years.

Dawg48

April 7th, 2011
9:17 pm

Ugab needs to get of the blog and learn you can talk without all the cussing come on man

D A DoubleU G

April 7th, 2011
9:18 pm

I actually enjoy some of you fools on here thinking that Spring Practice injuries immediately translate into a bunch of coaches walking around clueless in Athens.

Enough with the with hunt already. Either support this team or move on. Nobody will miss you.

And the comment above that said something to the effect of “Tennessee is getting after it, what’s UGA doing”…….. made me laugh out loud. Obviously a Techie trying to act like an SEC fan knowing what they are talking about.

149 days til’ kickoff.
GO DAWGS!!

D A DoubleU G

April 7th, 2011
9:18 pm

Dawgs eat their own poop

April 7th, 2011
9:20 pm

Don’t worry dawg fans, it’s only been 31 years since your last championship. Since then, almost half the SEC has won one or more championships.

LSU -2
Florida – 3
Alabama – 2
Auburn – 1
Tennessee – 1

Monger

April 7th, 2011
9:31 pm

UGAB- not sure what youre problem is with Mark Richts recruiting, the coaching I can understand, but his recruiting is second to none. No OL or DL? well you either just made that up or have no clue who are recruits are. We just signed 6 OL, 4 DL (2 DE, and 2 DT), and 3 LBs. One of these defensive linemen is the 340 lb. John Jenkins, who will anchor our 3-4 defense. I understand the frustration at not signing a fullback in this class, especially after losing Munzenmeir and Chapas, but I think Bruce Figgins will be fine this year, he is easily the biggest and fastest FB we have had in the last decade. You are wrong about everything else though, the dogs used 10 of their 25 scholarships on the offensive and defensive lines, not to mention all the good DL they got last class, that will be sophmores this year.

Preston

April 7th, 2011
9:39 pm

Not worried! The fact that the defense is obviously more aggressive in addition to the coaching staff’s realization that playing flag football during spring practice is NOT a good idea will result in much better results in the REAL season! Thank God Martinez is gone! How soon some forget how we stopped letting the boys be boys while he was here.

SOGADOG

April 7th, 2011
9:41 pm

Injuries mean they are practicing hard. It doesnt mean strength and conditioning is lacking.

Big Dawg Cobb

April 7th, 2011
9:42 pm

This is a result of the new attitude in Athens. Players are playing hard and when that happens injuries will happen. Hopefully minor but none the less it’s a part of the game. I’d rather see them aggressive, even in spring ball. Good that we have depth… GO DAWGS

dawgforever

April 7th, 2011
9:48 pm

theres plenty of time to get better,and the stupid people that arent uga fansthat are sayin sht ya’ll be srry when we win a national championship and ya’ll are gettin ur national championships take away and were celebrating!!!!!!!!!!!!give it a few weeks well be fin,just cuz u got hurt doesnt mean ur not don good in the wait room were workin r asses of in there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

dawgforever

April 7th, 2011
9:51 pm

btw big dawg cobb and D ADouble U G know exactly what there talking about and are true dawg fans….keep playin aggressive guys!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Kato Snow

April 7th, 2011
9:53 pm

UGA is looking damn good out there, If they pull off the Hat Trick of Defeating Boise State, South Carolina and Florida. I think they are poised to go 10-0 and maybe even have a shot at the nationals!! we will see how it goes, as far as the practices have been going…. BEST DAMN PRACTICES IVE witness in years, those young men have been relentless every rep!! UGA expect good things this year.

JAMES KIRKLAND

April 7th, 2011
9:57 pm

recuit tougher players, please/ there maybe a reason we have been losing 5 and 6 games a year

georgiagirl

April 7th, 2011
9:57 pm

Bunch of want-be fans

Kato Snow

April 7th, 2011
9:59 pm

James Kirkland Sit your a$$ down somewhere with the bull crap, these guys are tough

maybe they will knock off the lace panties, too.

April 7th, 2011
10:04 pm

about time people are hitting hard in practice.

wonder how long the imposter wearing the rodney hampton jersey would have lasted in a hard hitting practice….

someone needs to knock the lace panties off of the uga football program. better hope it is by our own players than the rest of the SEC.

Shawn

April 7th, 2011
10:13 pm

I love the fact that they are back to practicing hard. After the rash of injuries in the off season before 2008 Richt scaled back these aggressive type practices. We see where that has gotten us in the last couple years. I think that has been our downfall. CMR learned a valuable lesson. The practices have to remain aggressive and hard nosed no matter how many players get injured. If not these guys lose their edge. Keep hitting boys. You’ll heal up and toughen up. Go Dawgs!

UberDawg

April 7th, 2011
10:43 pm

Have you guys ever heard of Google? Try this…
Go to Google and type Spring Football Injury Report . When you hit the magic search button, you get articles with stuff like this in it…

INJURY REPORT: Alabama offensive lineman Tyler Love was back in pads Monday after missing several practices recovering from a concussion. Love was still dressed in a black non-contact jersey though he was participating in drills.

Tide defensive back Dre Kirkpatrick had his right thumb wrapped and was able to participate in drills.

Other players in black non-contact jerseys Monday were safety Mark Barron (pectoral muscle), defensive back Nick Perry (shoulder), tight end Brad Smelley (wrist) and defensive back Jarrick Williams (shoulder). Robby Green and Brandon Moore remain absent, both serving indefinite suspensions.

See how that works? The AJC isnt likely to report on other teams outside the state.

UberDawg

April 7th, 2011
10:45 pm

My Google search got redacted…. It shouldve said…

Got to Google and type (Enter Team Name Here) Spring Football Injury Report

UGA '05

April 7th, 2011
10:56 pm

@ Old_School_ Fb Coach Tis a good S&C coach. I have met him at the coaches clinic and got the opportunity to talk to him and he knows what he is doing. He video tapes the workouts of each individual player. He holds the players accountable. I asked him about the workouts and got to view the workout plan. It works. Injury like these are due to improper stretching. Please think before you speak or else you’ll look stupid.

UGA '05

April 7th, 2011
10:57 pm

Sorry should be Coach T is…

UGA '05

April 7th, 2011
11:05 pm

And since I have seen it, Old_School_Fb, I will tell you that the players are busting their asses in the weight room and are making significant muscle gains. So nice try at being a smart ass, but I’m just a smarter ass. You’ll see I’m right when G-Day rolls around and when the season rolls around. They are bigger.

Leon

April 7th, 2011
11:25 pm

Does Richt never learn? Same thing happened a few years back, season wrecked bgy coaches not pacing for the season. Geez, bring on Kirby Smart, I’m done with Mark Richt.

Melvin

April 7th, 2011
11:26 pm

Wow, G-Day should be a joy to watch, if you like watching guys stand on the sidelines in green jerseys.

Then again, without healthy linebackers and safeties, maybe Murray scores a td this G-Day. Snicker.

tide roll

April 7th, 2011
11:31 pm

Sanders Commings will be an All-SEC safety.

Melvin

April 7th, 2011
11:35 pm

My buddies guess that Georgia will have 25% of the team in green jerseys for G-Day.

6 out of 10 in the office say Murray throws more interceptions than td’s on G-Day.

Leon

April 7th, 2011
11:37 pm

Injury situation looks worse than before 2008 season. didn’t think that was remotely possible. who is running the program?

Andy

April 7th, 2011
11:39 pm

Ok now, the defense has won every scrimmage but one, where’s the offense?

Erik

April 7th, 2011
11:42 pm

I thought Burrows was still injured? Man, we are thin at LB.

Fictus Fanaticus

April 7th, 2011
11:54 pm

I am concerned. I have never seen so many position changes in the off season as we are seeing on this team this spring.

This shows a disturbing lack of planning. I’ve been a supporter of Mark Richt his whole career. But this is inexcusable.

I can already see the excuses for when when we lose our fifth game next year

“Well, the defense moved so many players around last spring that are still learning the positions. Coach Mark Richt says even though the game against Vanderbilt was lost, Players are making progress adjusting to their new positions”

Sorry, but if we have another .500ish season, I have to say that Mark Richt has to go. Lets just hope he doesn’t land somewhere else in the SEC.