Q&A: UT’s Da’Rick Rogers says Georgia game is ’sort of personal’

Rogers

Rogers

Tennessee wide receiver Da’Rick Rogers was an AJC Super 11 selection and the No. 1 prospect in the state Georgia for the Class of 2010. He was actually committed to the Georgia Bulldogs for seven months, from June 2009 until he flipped his commitment to the Vols in January of 2010. Now a sophomore, the Calhoun resident enters Saturday’s game against Georgia in Neyland Stadium as Tennessee’s No. 1 offensive threat. He leads the Vols in receptions (27) and receiving yards (442). Rogers talked to reporters on a teleconference call on Wednesday and here’s what he had to say. . . .

Q: Can you please remind folks about how you came to sign with Tennessee after being committed to Georgia for so long?

A: “Really I just came on a visit [to Knoxville] and I fell in love with the team and the city. I just really wanted to be a part of a program that was rebuilding and that’s what really changed it for me.”

Q: Did Georgia have any hints or signs that you were going to flip on them? Did you surprise the coaches when you switched to Tennessee?

A. “I don’t know. I don’t know about the coaches. They can feel however they might have felt. It was all for me. You know, I had to go where I could be happy and I’m in a great place now. I’m happy here.”

Q: Word is the people of Calhoun were pretty upset with your decision. Has your hometown gotten over that?

A: “Oh, yeah, they’ve calmed down. At first people were just bitter because I went to a rival school. But now it’s just like, ‘we’ll cheer for Da’Rick wherever he is. We’re still Georgia fans but we’ll just be Tennessee fans, too.’

Q: Have you exchanged any tweets or Facebook messages with Bacarri Rambo this year?

A: “No, none at all.”

Q: Do you get especially fired up for playing Georgia?

A: “Most definitely. It’s sort of personal, this game is. But I’ll just be taking it like any other game. It’ll be a team effort and we’ll come out and play hard against a good team and see where it ends.”

Q: You didn’t have much of an impact in last year’s game against Georgia. What kind of improvements have you made since last year to put you in the position you are now?

A: “Mainly just with route-running and speed off the ball. College and the SEC are all about how fast it is. Once I got a hang of that and got the playbook down pat, I was just able to play fast. And then it was about who’s the better athlete.”

Q: What was playing in Sanford Stadium like for you last year?

A: “It was sort of new, being booed by the whole stadium. That was new to me. It was crazy to hear that. It didn’t really affect me. It was just a new environment, a new thing. I’m ready this year. I’ve trained a lot harder. It’ll be a good game.”

Q: How excited you going to be on Saturday?

A: “Well, of course, we’ll all be excited. But I’m going to do a good job of keeping my team levelheaded and play well. I’m going to try to be a leader and be calm for the team and not let my emotions get to me.”

Q: How has your role changed since Justin Hunter went down with the knee injury against Florida?

A: “It really hasn’t changed that much. The objective is always to catch balls and score touchdowns. The thing is, I’m the go-to guy now and I know that. I just have to make plays when the ball is thrown to me.”

Q: What’s it like playing with Tyler Bray as quarterback?

A: “To be honest, it’s pretty easy. He usually puts the ball where it needs to be, where only I can get it. It’s pretty much as simple as that.”

Q: What has made Bray such a better quarterback this season?

A: “Really just his work ethic and his composure. His composure is through the roof now. Last year he didn’t say much in the huddle. This year he’s definitely a vocal leader and keeps everything calm in the huddle. He’s really worked on his composure this year.”

Q: What are your thoughts on Georgia’s defense?

A: “Really they’re just an athletic front. They play fast. They always run to the ball. They’re great athletes and they make plays.”

Q: Do you feel like there was more talk between these two teams last year?

A: “I think so. But I’m the kind of guy, I feed off any kind of energy, whether it be a negative or a positive I flip it to a positive. So, you know, trash talking and everything, it just makes the game more intense for the fans to watch and makes it a more fun environment.”

248 comments Add your comment

[...] talked to Rogers (along with Bray) on a teleconference call later this morning. CLICK HERE to read my Q&A with [...]

Concrete Pete

October 5th, 2011
1:49 pm

Da’Trick Rogers-Nash!

G-Dawg

October 5th, 2011
1:55 pm

RAFB in da hizzy!!!! Go Dawgs!!

Big Albany Dawg

October 5th, 2011
1:56 pm

Remind me who this guy is?

Tom In ATL

October 5th, 2011
2:06 pm

“It’s was all for me” – Pretty much sums up this narcissistic Prima Donna – I could care less if he decided UT was the place for him. But to string along another program for nearly a year – after they committed to you and quit recruiting that position – and then pull a switch on signing day – and then have the gall to say “It’s personal” with UGA?

GatorEator

October 5th, 2011
2:10 pm

What a punk!

TomUT

October 5th, 2011
2:10 pm

He is the number one receiver in the SEC and top 10 receiver in the nation.

DawginLex

October 5th, 2011
2:10 pm

He really just needs to shutup and play football

so does Rambo

It’s personal because he made it personal by handling it poorly. He has no class, no character and I hope we knock his a$$ out of the game Saturday.

Dawg_Mike

October 5th, 2011
2:12 pm

Top Dawg of Blue Ridge

October 5th, 2011
2:16 pm

Just wasted 2 minutes of my life… What a punk….Come on Chip?…. Thats not even worth your time??

Vols2thaWall

October 5th, 2011
2:19 pm

He was commited to UGA soo long because he liked them…Until he visited Tennessee and liked it better. We kind of went through the same thing with Marlon Brown. Sawwwwrrrryy

Russ, the Temporary Mascot

October 5th, 2011
2:20 pm

Da’Rick and De’Rek had better be ready and if either one gets close to me I plan to bite ‘em. This guy sounds just like one of our recruits and I wonder how he got away? Not on a scooter, that’s for sure.

kevin

October 5th, 2011
2:22 pm

Where you choose to go to school is a big deal and it’s to be expected that some kids get wishy-washy on their commitments. It happens. That said, I hope Rambo takes his head off on Sat.

Dawglasville

October 5th, 2011
2:30 pm

What value do you get out of interviewing athletes anyway? What insight do we ever get? I don’t care if it is Da’Rick or Aaron. What do you take from any of these pieces? That said, you do a great job Chip.

Rduck

October 5th, 2011
2:32 pm

UGA is better off without this clown.

Charles

October 5th, 2011
2:32 pm

DaRick and UT deserve each other. Me-first headcase, albeit talented, playing for the shadiest program in college football, maybe just behind Bama over the course of each school’s history. In the end, it was probably for the best that he didn’t come to UGA.

“It was all for me”…that comment perfectly summarizes this trashball. Yes, kids have to make the best decisions for themselves, but in all walks of life you do things with class, even when you’re looking out for #1. DaRick has never understood that, and it will ultimately be his undoing.

Shell Answer Man

October 5th, 2011
2:33 pm

Did you need a translator, Chip?

Son of Munson

October 5th, 2011
2:37 pm

Time to put on the Hobnail Boots.

RevThomas

October 5th, 2011
2:38 pm

Love Coach Richt – GO DAWGS!!! http://www.wedgeorgia.com

INDawgfan

October 5th, 2011
2:39 pm

Here’s his line from the only “real” game he’s played in: Florida
5 catches for 62 yards and a touchdown.

Not bad but I don’t think he’ll even do that on Sat. Maybe 5 catches but for less than 50 yds and no touchdowns. His QB better practice running for his life this week.

Matthews Dawg

October 5th, 2011
2:40 pm

Russ….Glad to have you back!! I like reading your blogs!! Go Dawgs!!

Slick

October 5th, 2011
2:40 pm

Wait, didn’t he jilt us? Why, exactly, is it “sort of personal” for him then? I would think it would be sort of personal for the person left at the alter, not the one who did the leaving.

Cmill

October 5th, 2011
2:43 pm

Yeah he was really able to feed off that trash talking last year- 41-14? But wait how many yards did he have? Oh, -3?

Mtn Dawg

October 5th, 2011
2:45 pm

D’Rick Rogers can hurt us. Make no mistake. We’ve got some great cover corners but one-on-one will be tough. However, DAWGS WIN!!!

Mtn Dawg

October 5th, 2011
2:47 pm

@Slick – Good point.

INDawgfan

October 5th, 2011
2:47 pm

True Mtn Dawg, but I think the pressure up front with our front 7 will mess-up a good bit of timing between QB and WR. Plus, our DB’s are doing a good job of solid tackling, which helps a ton.

ATL_Vol

October 5th, 2011
2:49 pm

Some of us are lovers, but most of y’all are haters…

UGay fans are so delusional and ass backwards. Couldn’t have been more excited to have an elite WR committed, then as soon as he switches and signs with UT all of the sudden he is full of bad character, poor decision making and none of y’all want him. What a joke. I can’t believe y’all think it is selfish for a student athlete to choose a school that best fits him. Are you understanding what your saying? What other reason do you choose a school? He’s from GA so he has to go to UGay? He needs to please the fans and chose an education based on what everyone else wants? Real intelligent UGAy fans, hate a kid bc he chose a school that fits him. That’s showing real class.

INDawgfan

October 5th, 2011
2:52 pm

@ATL_Vol. . . . .Wow! Umm. . . . .about that class my man. . . . . .hmm. . . . .Go Dawgs!

Columbdawg

October 5th, 2011
2:55 pm

We got Marlon Brown from them at the last minute and they got DaRick from us a year later! Good luck to both the young men and hope it works out best for both of them! I really think they might have beaten Florida if their best player didn’t get hurt early on in that game! That kid was better than DaRick and may have been top 10 WR in the country this year.

However, we have played a tougher overall schedule so far so this should be a close game.

Douglas

October 5th, 2011
2:59 pm

ATL_Vol: How can a UT Fan say anything about being classy? Look at your men’s basketball program and football program — you hired two cheaters and now your progam is in trouble. It’s OK with me if Rogers chose a different school — but it is how he did it that angers UGA fans. If we had known earlier that he liked UT, we could have recruited other players.

Sam

October 5th, 2011
3:00 pm

ATL_Vol,
I really like your comment about class. That is coming form a fan of a school that wears Pumpkin Orange, hired the extra classy Lane Kiffin and is based in the crap hole, rust bucket town of Obknoxville. At least you are classy enough to move to a good city that has more to offer than UT, Oak Ridge and TVA as its only sources of a decent living. I was transferred to Obknoxville in 1996 for three years and outside of the Smoky Mountains the place is a dump.

some dude

October 5th, 2011
3:00 pm

No mention of him putting a cop in ICU after a bar room brawl?

ED

October 5th, 2011
3:01 pm

Lowcountry Bulldawg

October 5th, 2011
3:01 pm

He liked UGA until Daddy Nash became the bad man for UT and brokered a better deal for his son than Vandy by brokering Da’Rick to UT. Lets call a spade a spade here.

just sayin'

October 5th, 2011
3:02 pm

vol…and you call a guy who, along with several other Vol th_ugs, stomped a TN policeman into unconsciousness a ‘good’ character guy….get real…

Lowcountry Bulldawg

October 5th, 2011
3:02 pm

“BAG MAN” for UT

ugaclassof2004

October 5th, 2011
3:08 pm

I could give a rat’s behind about Da’Rick Rogers. But I’ll say this…

If Richt even remotely cares about keeping his job next season, he better have these boys ready to play come Saturday. The Vols have some talent but they’re a work in progress. I wasn’t particularly blown away with Tyler Bray in the Florida game, but he and the rest of the Vol offense have big play ability. They also remember the beatdown they received in Athens last season. That young Tennessee team was experiencing a let down from the LSU loss the week before, and just didn’t have any gas left in the tank to hang with Murray & AJ. You can bet that won’t be the case this year , and if we don’t want to be embarrassed like we were in 2009 and 2007, we better come ready to play.

38 Yardline Dawg

October 5th, 2011
3:13 pm

Really, I think Da’Rweck really enjoys really using the word ‘Really,’ really.

DDawg

October 5th, 2011
3:13 pm

Good lord…lots of sour grapes on here. We got Marlon Brown at the last minute and they got Da’Rick at the last minute. Get over it! The kid is a great WR however he did not come to UGA. Lets just hope Marlon can step up to make this ‘trade” even.

security dawg

October 5th, 2011
3:16 pm

I know the bible teaches us to turn the other check, and to be forgiving to those who wronged us but I can’t help but hope he(meanin D*trick Rogers) gets his clock rung and has to sit rest of game after a 1rst quarter slant, that takes him in too far inside (J.Jones) wheel house…..Pray for me GATA go Dawgs!!!

DDawg

October 5th, 2011
3:19 pm

Wow, now wishing the kid gets hurt….did not realize us Dawg fans cried this much over one kid.

SiddyBoy

October 5th, 2011
3:20 pm

Hey DuhHick !!! I’ll never be a Tenessee fan too-Got it?

INDawgfan

October 5th, 2011
3:21 pm

Nah, no injuries for him. . . . I just want the Dawgs to win! That’s good enough for me.

Ron Burgundy

October 5th, 2011
3:22 pm

Stay classy Darick and UGA.

Robinwood

October 5th, 2011
3:23 pm

What the hell kind of name is Da’Rick, anyway? I’m surprised this moron doesn’t refer to himself in third person….

UT BAG

October 5th, 2011
3:23 pm

Enter your comments here

UT BAG MAN

October 5th, 2011
3:24 pm

NO CHECK! Cash only.

38 Yardline Dawg

October 5th, 2011
3:28 pm

My lyrics to help the Vols tune go by easier…

“Rocky Top, Tennessee, Home sweet home to me,
Good ole Rocky Top,
I’m a redneck CAN’T YOU SEE?
I’m a REDNECK from TENNESSEE!”

Send'em U hauls

October 5th, 2011
3:30 pm

This is another reason that UGA should fire Richt letting top recruits get away. Richt and his goons are worthless.

dawggirl

October 5th, 2011
3:30 pm

No reason to wish him getting hurt, that is extremely immature. But not as immature as the homophobic ATL_Vol.