Big John Jenkins goes down but rest of ‘Dream Team’ survives scorching first day

New Georgia noseguard John Jenkins is helped off the field after becoming overcome by the heat midway through the Bulldogs' first practice Thursday in Athens. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

New Georgia noseguard John Jenkins is helped off the field after becoming overcome by the heat midway through the Bulldogs' first practice Thursday in Athens. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

This was supposed to have posted at 5:30 a.m. this morning but “missed schedule” for some reason. Sorry. . . .

Athens — Day One of preseason camp is in the books for the Georgia football team as the Bulldogs endured a heat index of 103 degrees to get in 90 minutes of work on Woodruff Practice Fields on Thursday. And make no bones about it, the first day was mostly about survival.

Big John Jenkins, the highly-touted junior college transfer, was one of the first to succumb to the stifling conditions. The 6-foot-4, 350-pound nose guard from Meriden, Conn., was overcome by the heat about halfway through the practice and had to be helped off the field by team trainers. Jenkins did not return and there was no immediate word on the extent of his condition as no access was given to players or coaches after the workout. But it did not appear to be a serious situation.

Jenkins is one of 24 first-year players deemed “the Dream Team” by Georgia when it recruited them to Athens as a Top-5-ranked recruiting class. Several of them made strong first-day impressions, including tailback Isaiah Crowell, receiver Malcolm Mitchell and tight end Jay Rome.

At least half of that group is expected to contribute to varying degrees this season. But coach Mark Richt said they should not be feeling any pressure to do so.

“The rookies, their heads are swimming already,” Richt said during his media day press conference before the practice. “‘They realize they have a lot to learn. All I’m asking them to do is learn what to do. ‘Do your very best to get yourself in position to compete,’ but you’re not going to compete until you have an idea of what you’re doing.  I hope a lot of them contribute in a big way. As far as their skill sets, there’s no question either sooner or later they will really be productive for us. It’s just going to be a matter of how quickly can they figure it out and maybe what our depth chart looks like at their position. A lot of things are involved, but I don’t want them to feel the pressure of having to try to carry the team on their back. That’s not the case at all.”

UGA completes internal investigation

Georgia has completed its investigation into eligibility issues facing linebacker Jarvis Jones. But it looks we’ll have to wait to find out what they may have discovered.

UGA’s office of public affairs, responding to an open records request from the AJC, confirmed that the school’s report was completed this week and sent to the SEC office. However, UGA declined to provide copies of that document under the advice of its Legal Affairs office, claiming “it would directly identify a particular student [Jones] and, therefore, is exempt from release under . . .  the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.  “FERPA,” as the federal law is commonly known, was enacted to protect the privacy of students’ education records.

Athletic Director Greg McGarity declined comment and Richt said he didn’t know much about it.

“The only thing I know is that we have submitted whatever we have found to the SEC offices and we’re just kind of waiting,” Richt said. “That’s all I’m really allowed to say.”

Jones, a transfer from Southern Cal who’s slated to start a strongside linebacker, is accused of accepting impermissible benefits from an AAU coach in the summer of 2009.

Austin Long sidelined with illness

Richt confirmed sophomore offensive tackle Austin Long will be sidelined for the start of preseason practice but possibly not as long as originally thought.

“What [director of sports medicine] Ron [Courson] is wanting us to call it now is a ‘mono-like’ illness,” Richt said. “We’re not entirely sure that’s what it is.”

Richt said Long will be monitored day-to-day with the hope he’ll be able to join practice before the season opener. He is the backup to Justin Anderson at right tackle.

Also unable to participate in Thursday’s practice were defensive end Derrick Lott (cut leg), defensive end Dexter Morant (shoulder),  freshman outside linebacker Sterling Bailey (shoulder) and freshman offensive tackle Xzavier Ward (knee). However, sophomore outside linebacker T.J. Stripling, who was sidelined most of last season with a knee injury, practiced without limitations.

Troupe discipline ‘being handled’

Richt said discipline for senior wide receiver Israel Troupe is “being handled internally.” He would not say whether Troupe will suspended for the first game or miss any playing time as a result.

“We’re going to do what we feel is most appropriate,” Richt said.

Troupe, who will graduate on Saturday, was cited for urinating in public and then missed his court date this week. He’s expected to be part of the Bulldogs’ six-man rotation at wide receiver.

201 comments Add your comment

Dawg_Mike

August 5th, 2011
12:47 pm

Heck, I succumbed to the heat myself yesterday. it was 104 at 3pm in Savannah.

RabidDawgFan

August 5th, 2011
12:49 pm

First! Jenkins will be fine. Can’t wait for the season. Go Dawgs!

RabidDawgFan

August 5th, 2011
12:49 pm

Guess I wasn’t first, but who cares? haha

UGA Dawgs

August 5th, 2011
12:49 pm

JT DAWG

August 5th, 2011
12:50 pm

dawgman

August 5th, 2011
12:50 pm

UGA Dawgs

August 5th, 2011
12:50 pm

RabidDawgFan

August 5th, 2011
12:51 pm

You have to realize that Jenkins is a load of a man and in his first SEC practice, he’s not going to be ready right away. Give him a few days and weeks to train in this type of environment. Remember, he’s from Connecticut and it’s no where near as hot up there. He’s in Georgia now and in the heat of August, that big, he’s bound to get tired. He’ll get accustomed and he’ll wreak havoc on Boise’s O-line come September 3rd.

Quaid

August 5th, 2011
12:54 pm

Here come the haters. Like any of them could go full speed in this heat. Jenkins will be in beast mode come sept 3rd. GO DAWGS!!!

Big Dawg

August 5th, 2011
12:54 pm

Big John will hopefully rebound quickly but kind of stupid having a 4:30 start time for practice anyway. Don’t understand why they didn’t start out under the lights or in the AM.

ATL

August 5th, 2011
12:55 pm

Hey Rabid, I think that Jenkins attended junior college in Mississippi for the past 2 years. He should be used to the heat by now. Super hot day, tough on everybody. . . .I wouldn’t read too much into it. He’ll be fine. I think the part about wreaking havoc on Boise’s O-Line.

Valdostadawg

August 5th, 2011
12:56 pm

We will be fine. Go Dawgs.

Just The Facts

August 5th, 2011
12:57 pm

Chip – Tell me Big John is not going to wear # 6? That looks kind of silly on a man of his size. You never see a DL/LB type wear single digits unless they are a speed rush type player. Comments please?

1 hater

August 5th, 2011
12:57 pm

His lard butt will tire from chasing Boise’s speed all over the field.

McDawg

August 5th, 2011
12:58 pm

Free Kent Turene!!!!!!

Jarvis Jones thing is not going to be resolved anytime soon if we just now submitted everything to the SEC which then forwards to NCAA which will then do their own investigation repeating in essence a 2 year police investigation

JT DAWG

August 5th, 2011
12:58 pm

I am really happy to hear the good news about T.J. Stripling. He impressed me last year as a true freshman and will make a splash this season at OLB. The guy is a freak.

Big John

August 5th, 2011
12:58 pm

I wish I would have signed with UCONN.

Beast from the East

August 5th, 2011
12:58 pm

Big Dawg,
FYI….Players in summer session had finals yesterday and today. Richt explained that was the reason for the start times on 680 The Fan yesterday.

McDawg

August 5th, 2011
12:59 pm

i like #6 for the nose

My Dad can whoop your dad

August 5th, 2011
12:59 pm

should start out super early and late late afternoon for the first few days

what of it?

August 5th, 2011
12:59 pm

Good to see how well that conditioning program is working out

powderdawgdenver

August 5th, 2011
1:01 pm

Big John is now 340lb….Getting excited out here in the west! whether we were 6-7, 8-5-10-3 or 13-0, the previous year, a true Dawg fan alway is pumped in August…GATA!

dave

August 5th, 2011
1:01 pm

@ Big Dawg – These practices are acclimation practices – and while the first few practices in the heat are tough – it prepares them for the afternoon games that will be incredibly hot. Besides that – these guys have been working out all summer – so most are prepared. The big thing is to keep thme hydrated. Jenkins is a BIG BIG Man – he will adjust.

RabidDawgFan

August 5th, 2011
1:02 pm

Haters, GO AWAY! Jenkins will be fine. Another Lineman that wears number 6 is Jaye Howard (Florida). He’ll get used to it.

Hollywould

August 5th, 2011
1:02 pm

Man, I remember doing 2 a days in August playing high school ball in Macon. We were given a salt tablet
before practice and were lucky to get a dixie cup of gatorade during practice. Wonder why it is so different today with kids dying and being hospitalized?

TampaDAWG

August 5th, 2011
1:02 pm

1 hater, if you think Boise is faster than UGA you have lost if from the heat as well. Ask Hawaii how that worked out

JT DAWG

August 5th, 2011
1:03 pm

They practiced at that time because of finals going on right now. The are going to 9am or 6pm practices next week. Anybody else ready for the fall or winter?!!!? I am ready to root the Dawgs on in the Dome… in December!

Go Dawgs! I love the fat man in the lil number!

Quaid

August 5th, 2011
1:03 pm

just the facts, he’s wearing number 6 cause he is going to play fullback in certain situations. Think of The Fridge on the goal line situations. Short yardage plays will no longer be a problem.

Boise in ATL

August 5th, 2011
1:04 pm

Hot in Boise as well – but not as much humidity. The humidity down here is incredible. Safety first with these guys.

Rooster

August 5th, 2011
1:04 pm

Crowell looks extremely small. I hope he is able to pick up all those blitzes coming his way. Looks like we have three tailbacks at <185 lbs.

Beast from the East

August 5th, 2011
1:05 pm

Hollywould,
We’ve gotten softer as technology has improved. I grew up in Florida and my grade school did not have A/C. No big deal back then, but they would close the school these days.

RabidDawgFan

August 5th, 2011
1:06 pm

If I’m ever in a situation where it’s 4th and 1 or we’re on the goal line needing a TD, I swear I’d just hand it off to Jenkins. He’ll get it for us. No doubt.

Starting tomorrow morning, practice will begin at 8:45 in the morning. So that’s a lot better. You can get the work done, but not have anybody having problems. When classes begin on the 15th, they’ll have them late in the afternoon around 5. By then, these guys should be accustomed.

RabidDawgFan

August 5th, 2011
1:07 pm

Rooster, Crowell is 215
Samuel is 243
Malcome is 220

Get it together

TampaDAWG

August 5th, 2011
1:07 pm

according to some other sites Crowell weighs 215. If he looks small he must carry it well. Hopefully, he will pick up the blitzes so he can play

JT DAWG

August 5th, 2011
1:07 pm

Hollywould

“Wonder why it is so different today with kids dying and being hospitalized?”

I think its the energy drinks that are killing all of these young kids. Kids are probably drinking at least one a day. Anything that speeds your heart up is bad in my book.

Just The Facts

August 5th, 2011
1:09 pm

Quaid – Thanks for the info

Hollywould

August 5th, 2011
1:10 pm

JT/ true on the energy drinks/ wonder if schools have looked into that?

Rooster

August 5th, 2011
1:10 pm

Crowell aint no 215 buddy. I take that back with all those dreads he might be north of 200.

Rooster

August 5th, 2011
1:12 pm

Just look at the pictures from practice. No way Crowell weighs 215. Just more kool-aid being handed out to the bulldog nation.

PMC

August 5th, 2011
1:12 pm

Jarvis Jones has already sat out a year and transferred, I’m not really sure anything that happened several years ago should even be relevant to this team. This should have been a problem for Southern California not Georgia.

RabidDawgFan

August 5th, 2011
1:15 pm

Rooster, I bet you look like one.

Everybody looks smaller in jersey’s and shorts. Wait until the pads come on. Even Marcus Lattimore looks small in jersey and shorts. What do you want him to look like? THE HULK??!!

RabidDawgFan

August 5th, 2011
1:16 pm

Samuel is 240 pounds of man coming at your D-line buddy!

ATL

August 5th, 2011
1:17 pm

Jenkins is wearing #6 so that he can play on offense and defense. He’s going to be pretty nasty on some goal line situations. Him and figgins (fullback) both!

RabidDawgFan

August 5th, 2011
1:20 pm

Imagine this….running to the right side where you have Burnette (6′2, 313), and Anderson (6′5, 340)…with a 270lb fullback charging at the defense with a 240lb running back charging behind him. I’d hate to be a leftside defensive end having to hold fort trying to make a play with all that power and strength coming at me.

Palmetto State Dawg

August 5th, 2011
1:23 pm

Rooster, muscle weighs more than fat so dude’s that are muscular (like Crowell) weigh more than they appear to. Also, pictures on the internet do not do it justice. I live in Columbia, and saw pictures of Marcus Lattimore last year online and he appeared to me small with no muscle. I then saw him in person crossing the street headed to that pathetic excuse for a practice field that they have here, and he is actually a pretty stout fella.

DanDawg

August 5th, 2011
1:23 pm

I love the Dawg kool aid. Can’t get enough. Naysayers, go elsewhere and regurgitate your negativity.

M.Bison

August 5th, 2011
1:24 pm

Jenkins isn’t the first big man to wear a single digit number…people have been doing it for years. Marvin Austin wore #9 last year and several other DT’s are wearing it this year (Florida, Oregon etc.)

I-SAID-IT

August 5th, 2011
1:25 pm

Georgia will win the national championship this year.
After they beat Florida Richt he will get a new contract
and all the bandwagon riders will be singing praise.
MARK THAT DOWN!
As i said, Georgia Fans, the best and WORST in all of the land,
makes me shame to cheer for the same team at times.
Go DAWGS! ALL THE DAMN WAY!
Going to Vegas to put my money down now!

JT DAWG

August 5th, 2011
1:25 pm

Rooster

I think Crowell is more like 204.

bucket

August 5th, 2011
1:25 pm

Great, I am sure we will have to listen to the old school guys telling us how it used to be 120 degrees when they practiced and they never had to be helped off the field. You know back in the day when they walked uphill both ways to school! Jenkins will be fine. I understand the school schedule has to be taken into account and I hope they can find some better practice times moving forward. The football culture leads to death as we have seen this week when guys don’t want people to think they are soft when they need a break.