ATHENS – Asked if the Boise State game was one he’d just as soon forget, Georgia wide receiver Tavarres King shot back, “What game?”
In addition to having quick feet, the junior flanker from Mt. Airy is quick witted. He’s also resilient, which he has needed to be since last Saturday in the Georgia Dome.
Known as the leader of the Bulldogs’ receiving corps as well as one of their most dependable receiving targets, everybody was surprised when King ended up dropping two passes against Boise State. He finished with a single catch for three yards as the Bulldogs fell 35-21.
“Individually it wasn’t up to par,” said King, who had 27 catches for 504 yards last season. “Everybody knows that. Everybody knows that I make plays. But for some reason in that game I lost focus on two plays and didn’t execute.”
One of the plays was particularly big. Georgia was down 21-7 but on the move in Boise State territory midway through the third quarter when quarterback Aaron Murray found King open deep over the middle on second-and-12. The ball was delivered right on target, but King dropped it.
Murray was sacked on the next play, then Blair Walsh missed a 54-yard field goal attempt.
King had another drop late in the third quarter but was bailed out later in the possession when Orson Charles hauled in a 36-yard touchdown pass on fourth-and-two.
“In this business you’ve got to have a short memory,” said King, who needs just 50 receiving yards to go over 1,000 in his career. “That’s in the past. I put it behind me as soon as it happened. Even the greatest drop balls, so I’m fine.”
The question for the Bulldogs is whether this what life after A.J. Green is going to be like. Wideouts accounted for just seven catches for 92 yards in the first game. Freshman Malcolm Mitchell led the way with three for 64 and a touchdown, Marlon Brown added two for 12 and Rantavious Wooten had one for 13
Charles, a tight end, led all receivers with 6 catches for 106 yards and a score.
Head coach Mark Richt indicated the competition for playing time this week was wide open. But he said he still feels confident in the play-making abilities of the wideouts.
“I think we have a talented wide receiving corps, I really do,” Richt said. “If you’re watching them in practice every day, they’ve got ability. But we’ve all got to make the plays when our numbers are called. We’ve got to get some momentum and everybody will join the party, but we’ve got to get it going.”
Crowell longs for Lattimore-like carries
Georgia freshman tailback Isaiah Crowell said he has been impressed with what he’s seen from South Carolina’s star runner Marcus Lattimore. What he likes about him most is how many times he gets to run the football.
“That’s a tailback’s dream,” Crowell said.
Lattimore had 37 carries for 182 yards and 2 TDs in South Carolina’s 17-6 win over Georgia last year. Later he surpassed it with 40 carries for 212 yards and 3 TDs in a win over Florida. He finished with 249 carries and 1,197 yards and 19 TDs in 13 games last season.
Crowell had 15 carries for 60 yards in his Georgia debut last Saturday. “I think I did pretty good. I could have done a little better on pass protection, but overall I think I did pretty good for my first game,” he said.
He’d like to get significantly more against the Gamecocks.
“I know everybody’s going to be comparing me and Lattimore with each other,” Crowell said. “I just have to go out there and do my best. Hopefully I’ll get as many carries. But I’m just trying to help my team win, that’s the main thing.”
Alec Ogletree out longer than anticipated
Fullback Zander Ogletree told reporters Wednesday that his injured twin brother Alec Ogletree plans to make it back for the Florida game on Oct. 29. If that’s the case, he will be out longer than originally expected.
Alec Ogletree, Georgia’s starting “Mo” linebacker, broke a bone in his right foot in the first quarter of last Saturday’s loss to Boise State. Afterward, Richt said Ogletree would be sidelined for four to six weeks. It will have been eight weeks by the time the Bulldogs play the Gators. Ogletree underwent surgery Monday at St. Mary’s hospital.
Charles not to blame
It looked like tight end Orson Charles was to blame when Boise State’s Shea McClellin came free to stop Richard Samuel for a loss on crucial fourth-and-one play at the Broncos’ 26 in the second quarter last Saturday. Charles was coming in motion to the right and ran right by McClellin and up the field.
“It wasn’t him,” Richt said of Charles. “The look was a little different than what we had seen on film throughout the offseason study, but there was no excuse for letting the guy go free. But it wasn’t Orson. It looked like it was him, but it wasn’t.”
Fullback Zander Ogletree and tackle Justin Anderson both blocked the tackle on the play.
Lots of eyes on UGA-Boise State
ESPN’s telecast of the Georgia-Boise State football game was a big winner on Atlanta television Saturday night. The game drew a 16.7 local Nielsen rating, meaning 16.7 percent of TV households in the market tuned in on average. That translated to an audience of about 402,000 homes.
How other televised sports events Saturday night fared in the Atlanta market: the LSU-Oregon football game on ABC: 5.6 rating, 134,800 homes; the Nationwide Series race from Atlanta Motor Speedway on ESPN2: 2.3 rating, 55,400 homes; and the Braves-Dodgers game on SportSouth: 2.0 rating, 48,200 homes.
Etc. . . .
Georgia has added Southern University and Louisiana-Monroe to its 2015 home schedule, according to open-record documents obtained by the AJC this week. The Bulldogs will pay Southern $650,000 to come to Athens on Sept, 5, 2015, and will pay Louisiana-Monroe $1.2 million to play on Nov. 7, 2015. . . . The Bulldogs held a closed “dress-rehearsal” practice at Sanford Stadium on Thursday. No players or coaches were available for interviews afterward.