No new surprises for Georgia as second spring practice underway

ATHENS – Back at “The Butts” today covering Georgia’s second spring football practice. There’s not a lot of new info but I’ll supply some quick updates. In the meantime, I’ll clean out my notebook from yesterday’s first practice:

  • Yesterday I reported that Georgia’s No. 1 offensive line starting out is LT Kenarious Gates, LG Kolton Houston, C David Andrews, RG Chris Burnette and RT Watts Dantzler. For what it’s worth, the second line looks like this: LT Mark Beard, LG Dallas Lee, C Hugh Williams, RG Hunter Long and RT Austin Long. So you’ve got a walkon at center and brothers playing side-by-side on the right.
  • Same players wearing green: WR Rhett McGowan, WR Chris Conley, OT Xzavier Ward, OT Zach DeBell, OLB Sterling Bailey.
  • Linebacker Ramik Wilson was not at practice for the second straight day due to a “a personal, private issue,” according to Richt. He was not ready to divulge the reason for Wilson’s absence but did say it was not a disciplinary situation. We’re supposed to find out eventually.

We get defensive players after practice and I’ll be visiting with Malcolm Mitchell for first time since he’s been playing cornerback, so check back this evening for that report.

Now, from yesterday . . .

Mitchell impressive at corner

As I mentioned, Malcolm Mitchell wowed everybody when he skyed for a one-handed, over-the-shoulder grab in an intercept-the-fade drill in his first practice on Tuesday.

Here’s what coach Mark Richt said about Mitchell’s move:

“He actually came to play DB,” he quipped. “He signed to play DB and now he’s actually back there playing DB.

“It was fun to watch him get out there and compete,” he continued. “You could tell he wasn’t quite sure of what to do every play. But he’s playing with a lot of enthusiasm and certainly can break on the ball and change direction. I like how our cornerbacks look in general. I think they do a nice job. You can tell who the veterans are. It’s very obvious.”

Good bunch of backs

I wrote mostly about Isaiah Crowell on Day One. But even after Carlton Thomas decided to leave the Bulldogs still have six scholarship tailbacks on the roster. So there is plenty of talent and competition going forward.

“We do have a good bunch of backs right now, no doubt about that,” Richt said. “Some of them are totally inexperienced, but there’s a really fine talent base and there’s some guys that have been around. Ken Malcome and Richard [Samuel] and Isaiah have a pretty good idea of what to do with a little more experience under their belts. But they’re a talented bunch. We’ll see how well we block up front and how well they do the little things like secure the ball and protect and all thajt kind oof thing. But we certainly have some giuiys to work with.

All eyes on Keith Marshall

The most notable addition is, of course, true freshman Keith Marshall. Richt was asked for his first impressions on the 5-foot-11, 200-pound freshman:

“He’s very quick. You can tell he’s got good quickness, good speed. He seems to have good running instincts. The drills we do are so unrealistic at this point it’s hard to say that. But fir a guy in his first college practice, considering everybody else knows the system, I thought he did a pretty good job.

“You could tell he did an awful lot of studying from the moment he got here to this point to be able to function like he did. Coach McClendon was there to help him, but he had a pretty good working knowledge of what to do. He wasn’t totally lost and I think as time goes on we’ll see even more of what he can do.”

Some OLBs at DE

Ray Drew and Cornelius Washington were working with the defensive ends rather than the outside linebackers.

“They can do both,” Richt said. “They can play the end position and the outside linebacker position. They have a good working knowledge of that. Their body types certainly would allow them to play the end position as well. They’re getting reps there for a reason.”

Richt said Drew, who is currently listed at 6-foot-5, 263-pounds, could be growing out of the the outside linebacker position. “With the rate his body is growing, that may be the best spot for him,” Richt said. “He has long arms and huge feet. His shoes are like 20s or 18s or something.”

The 6-foot-4, 269-pound Washington, a senior, started six games last season and was second on the team with five sacks.

“Cornelius came in in a 4-3 defense and he was a hand-on-the-ground guy,” Richt said. “There probably was a greater comfort level for him doing that. But he has enough of a working knowledge to play (weakside linebacker).”

Also, former defensive end Derrick Lott was rotating with John Jenkins and Kwame Geathers at noseguard.

Ken Malcome on mat drills (pretty funny)

“Honestly, I didn’t want to come back (after the first day). I couldn’t even do it. I was getting C’s and D’s and F’s the whole time. But in my last mat drill I got two A’s, so that right there gave me a boost. I felt like if I could do that I could do anything. So I’ve just got to go do it and not complain about anything. Do what you’re supposed to do and you’ll be all right.

“It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done in sports. The only thing about it is I realize with mat drills, they’re not trying to break you, they’re just trying to see how tough you are. My first couple of times I was hurting, barely making it. But the last few times I just had to fight through it It is hard, though, and a lot of people don’t understand that. They think it’s just agilities, but it’s not. They’ll send you back through for anything. They’ll send you back 10 times; they won’t let you leave. So getting two A’s like that, I feel like I grew and they feel like that, too.”

Malcome also said he left the Michigan State game with a separated shoulder and a concussion.

“It was hurting, but once you’re in a game, you’re trying to play,” he said. “I wasn’t going to leave that game no matter what happened to me. I had to fight through it.”

58 comments Add your comment

Granthams The Man

March 21st, 2012
6:05 pm

Can’t wait until the season starts and I’m looking forward to G-day. Get after it guys and no injuries!

Chip, what’s up with Kwame Geathers?

1970 Dawg

March 21st, 2012
6:06 pm

Chip-Thanks for the update. Any word on Kwame G’s absence? How serious are Ward and DeBell’s injuries? Hopefully they are in the mix this fall.

Mountain Dawg

March 21st, 2012
6:08 pm

No mention of the QB’s. How is LeMay doing?

Maconbulldog.

March 21st, 2012
6:08 pm

Ray is still Growning?!?!?!?!?! This kid is going to be more of a Monster than a Man here soon….what are they feeding him up there in Athens?

ugab

March 21st, 2012
6:21 pm

Where is Geather’s?

Basstringerfish

March 21st, 2012
6:29 pm

Good stuff…two things without sounding stupid hopefully: can our offensive game plan utilize the passing skills and receiving skills we have coupled with what seems to be be shaping up as one one the most dynamic running games in the country? I mean does Bobo have it in him to use this talent? I am one that thinks so, but there is something that says that belief is tenuous. Secondly: we are replacing one of if not the best centers in UGA history. DGD Ben is. And I read where we are an unfortunate injury away from a walk on? Hmmmm. Finally kicking…we all know Larry Munson is asking ’bout that kicker???

bitter dawgs fan

March 21st, 2012
6:33 pm

dawgs rule mat drills——————and ————were on our way————–what the QB position?

Dawg in NC

March 21st, 2012
6:40 pm

Where is Kwame, seriously?

GTBob

March 21st, 2012
7:17 pm

As I mentioned, Malcolm Mitchell wowed everybody when he skyed for a one-handed, over-the-shoulder grab in an intercept-the-fade drill in his first practice on Tuesday.

Did Murray throw the ball that got intercepted? If so it’s nothing we haven’t already seen plenty of times. Good for Mitchell though finding a place to play.

Thomas Brown = Mr Negativity = 13-1 East (blogger) = Techie

March 21st, 2012
7:24 pm

Is that correct about Kwame? If so, why hasn’t it been in the news?

DodgerDAWG

March 21st, 2012
7:29 pm

@jack bull…if that were the case he would not be listed on the roster. Go away troll

Maconbulldog.

March 21st, 2012
7:31 pm

AND THE RUMORS mill starts for Kwame

Maconbulldog.

March 21st, 2012
7:33 pm

Kwame FOR center??? Just kidding guys….OL depth just has me worried but nothing else

Chip Towers

March 21st, 2012
7:45 pm

Kwame was there. Just failed to mention him. Sorry.

MY Dawg

March 21st, 2012
7:45 pm

Spring practice reports and the trolls are out already. Will this year be AM’s finest? Will the line actually block against the tougher defenses in the league? Will Mizzou be able to work their pass happy offense against the Dynamic Dawds? I for one can’t wait to see how this fall turns out! Go Dawgs!

Chip Towers

March 21st, 2012
7:46 pm

1970 Dawg: Kwame was there, don’t know why I didn’t mention him. Ward still recovering from knee surgery but should be fine. Believe DeBell was an ankle. Both will be ready by summer camp if not later this spring.

Chip Towers

March 21st, 2012
7:47 pm

Mountain Dawg: hard to tell on QBs. There are a ton of them and only Murray gets a lot of reps in the early portions we see. LeMay looks fine.

Kingdaddy

March 21st, 2012
8:16 pm

To all you Dog Downers hateing on A.M.
Even Drew Brees throws INTs. He won’t have to throw as much with the Awesome running game we’re going to put on the field. Running opens up passing and Murray is a very capable QB…

Old Dawg Fan

March 21st, 2012
8:30 pm

If anyone gets “out of line” sick Commings on him. He can just beat the “heck out of them” and literally have nothing done to him.
I don’t know about any of you but I am getting tired of UGA “recruiting” players regardless of their lack of character and criminal background!! I would rather have above average atheletes with good character and “no criminal background” instead of the “stud” who has little or no character and a huge criminal background!!! I know we will suffer in the SEC with this policy but the road we continually stay on will not lead to anyting but trouble!!!!

Professor Guntherson

March 21st, 2012
8:34 pm

Do you guys have spell check?

Tide Pride

March 21st, 2012
8:39 pm

Repeating my predictions for 2012.

Three SEC East teams will have a 6-2 record.
USCe will win the EAST (losses to LSU & ARK).
Gators will be second (losses to LSU & USCe)
Dogs will be third (losses to USCe and Gators)

USCe will win 3 in a row over UGA. Game at Columbia. Spurrier has raised the talent. C, Shaw protects the ball better than Murray when if counts.

Gators willbe better in year 2 with Muschamp. UGA needs two 4th down TD passes to beat Gators – teams were even last year. C. Weiss is gone.Gators defense will be a beast. Should be a good game. Murray will choke in crunch time.

UGA – Murray is a good QB – but is too loose with the ball and is out of control at moments that define the game (see USCe and Mich St ,,, and LSU for that matter). Gets bone head at the wrong time.
Outside of Florida last year – Richt plays not to lose – gets too careful. No way UGA should have lost to USCe and MI state last year. Boise was the better team and LSU is just at a different level than UGA. UGA would have finished 4th in the WEST last season.

I do thing UGA is improved – problem is USCe and Gators are also improved.

Should be a very exciting season.

crdawg

March 21st, 2012
8:45 pm

Spell check much? In a span of 10 words you had 3 spelling errors: thajt kind oof thing. But we certainly have some giuiys
Just kidding, we all make mistakes :)

Kingdaddy

March 21st, 2012
8:56 pm

I cannot believe you flagged my last post. Let me go get my goody-goody two-shoes. It was a joke …

Bigdsel

March 21st, 2012
9:00 pm

I can’t wait to see them dawgs in action. Hopefully our running game can improve dramatically.

Kingdaddy

March 21st, 2012
9:09 pm

Old Dawg Fan
You don’t sound like a UGA BULLDOG. More like a Bluetick Hound. Mr. Cummings has been a trouble-free Dawg until this last incident and I’ll bet he’s learned his lesson. I’m going out on a limb here, but as an OLD Dog Im sure you NEVER did anything wrong in your hypocritical life. Try looking in a mirror right before you post. It might help with your anger problems …

Kingdaddy

March 21st, 2012
9:20 pm

crdawg
I bbeleeb Yu mistpelled too wirds. Pleese git et rite, tank Yu …

Lakedawg

March 21st, 2012
9:27 pm

My predictions for SEC 2012!!

Three teams in SEC West with 6-2 records.

LSU wins west with losses to Fla.,Aub

Arkansas finishes 2nd with losses to LSU, S. Car.

Alabama finishes 3rd with losses to LSU and ARK

LSU and Arkansas have better QB than Alabama and over all better offensively.
,

LSU will have best defense in West with Arkansas improved. Alabama lost to many top notch D talent.

All three teams will be down defensively fro 2011, and all three will probably lose to an SEC East team.

Winner of East will win SEC after the West having the upper habd until this year.

Kingdaddy

March 21st, 2012
9:35 pm

Good post Lakedawg. Hope you aren’t responsible for any SECwesters committing suicide tonight.

Bull Dawg

March 21st, 2012
11:09 pm

Tide Pride is a dreamer. Lake dawg has it about right.

Stephen A.Dogg: LeMay is the future. Only competition will make Murray a better QB !

March 21st, 2012
11:19 pm

This is Mark Richt’s last chance to win a SEC and national title with the current group of players he has currently on the roster. This spring is very important for Georgia to work on areas of weakness to improve and get better.The defense is set and is ready to be unleashed on the SEC. If CTG’s defense can live up to expectations it will be a championship calibre defense. But alas, the offense which is not well coached, but talented, again will be Georgia’s achilles heel.

The weak links on offense begin with the outdated pass-first ACC/FSU offensive philosophy of Mark Richt and his disciple Mike Bobo. Dump that losing 2 tier offensive mindset and replace it with a I-formation SEC-style run based attack with a balance of passing and we would see dramatic improvement if the O-line does its job in pass AND run protection. Carlton Thomas is gone. Thank God ! Now Richt and Bobo must abandon give up plays now that they have proper SEC type depth at RB.

Now we deal with the problem at QB. Incumbent QB Aaron Murray has been a starter like it or not for two
seasons and his overall record of 16-11 just is not good enough. His overall stats are meaningless when you lose both bowls he started and lose to every top twenty opponent you face. Translation: Murray seriously needs competition at QB due to his gaffes and poor performances in games against big time defenses. He has underperformed in games that Georgia still won and should have won by wider margins. If Richt was smart he would take a serious look at LeMay this spring and get him as much work as possible. Any SEC or national championship hopes Georgia may have in the next two or three seasons will ride on LeMay, not Murray. If it were Murray we would have seen it versus Carolina the past two seasons or in the SECCG against LSU. But we did not, and sadly it seems with Murray we never will, because Richt and Bobo are determined to make him be something he’s not. He’s not a disciplined pocket passer and Richt/Bobo are handcuffing, or even better footcuffing the guy. He’s short so that means it would be wise to roll him out, unless he can’t make those type of throws on this level. If he can’t make the various throws on the run which is why Richt/Bobo want to pigeon hole him in the pocket, then it’s past time to look to LeMay and examine his skillset.

In the SEC, Georgia must win big games and win big and impressively versus meager opponents. Not just barely getting by Ole Miss, Kentucky and Vandy. Florida and Tennessee won’t stay down long. Now is time for Richt to drop the hammer on the Gators and Vols by hanging 50+ points on both this season as he should have in 2011. Richt has been nice for too long he must hang 50 on all cupcakes on the 2012 schedule to show the nation he finally means business. If Murray wants to be the starter at QB, he must step up his game and finally play well and win versus respectable opponents. Because like it or not the sooner Richt gets LeMay ready to start the closer Georgia gets to become a real threat in the national picture. LeMay is the future, because we already have seen Murray at his best and worst and nobody but Richt is happy. Richt should be tired of backing into the SEC East title only to be embarassed in the SECCG. That just can’t keep happening. Another 10-4 season with a soft 2012 season is unacceptable. The hotseat may be gone but the pressure for improvement may be greater than ever before ! Go Dogs !!

RED DOG 77

March 22nd, 2012
12:46 am

I like “Boo” Malcome…………He might turn some heads this year, especially due to the number of backs we have. But he has shown guts and determination to make a difference on this football team[remember he was going to transfer, but didn't?]…………..Yup, Boo will turn some heads this year, and may make the difference in a game or two…………GO DOGS!!!!!………..GATA!!!!!!!

Taco Meat

March 22nd, 2012
10:08 am

Tide Pride, please refer to an older post of mine for a more accurate assessment of the SEC East:

Let me preface this by saying I’ve never fed into all the hype and gimmicks of the Georgia program, nor have I ever “drank the Kool-aid”. But I’m gonna go out on a limb and say, as a loyal Dawg for over 2 decades, anything LESS than a National Championship this upcoming year will be a disappointment. There’s no reason for the Dawgs to not be a serious contender- favorable schedule, veteran QB, veteran WR corp, veteran defense, experienced/deep/talented RB corp, the OL will look different but the talent is there. The only cause for concern is Special Teams with the new kickers. I think that if the Dawgs can address special teams during the summer, then there’s absolutely no reason the Dawgs can’t hoist the crystal ball come February 2013.

Georgia will be favored in every single one of the games on the schedule. Yes, FLA will be improved, but they’ll still be young offensively (young QB, trying to find an every down back, questionable receivers). Auburn will have some big questions as well (new QB, loss of Dyer, receivers, defense with new coordinator). SC’s season will depend on how C. Shaw handles adversity, and who will step up at WR and take the pressure off of a recovering Lattimore. I don’t know much about Mizzou, and I know the game will be huge but I think we’ll be ready. The reason TN and Vandy don’t concern me is because they are home games. TN will be better but I don’t think they’ll be strong enough defensively to stop Georgia.

The only thing I”m saying is GA doesn’t have nearly as many question marks as the teams on the schedule. These guys have all played together for at least a full year, there have been no coaching changes, everyone is seemingly getting stronger and faster with Coach T. Couple that with the fact that the whole D came back because they sensed something special, and I’d say the Dawgs are pretty hungry.

DawginLex

March 22nd, 2012
10:35 am

Georgia was 3 TD’s better than SC a year ago without the turnovers. SC lost a ton on defense and Lattimore won’t be 100%. Shaw will be forced to throw to beat UGA and he won’t be able to do it.

Georgia 28
SC 23

Florida will be in the same boat as SC only worse. Good Defense with no downfield passing game and a questionable offensive line.

Georgia 31
florida 24

Georgia will not lose a single game in 2012 during the regular season.

AltamahaDawg

March 22nd, 2012
10:48 am

I tried to like Boo. I mean I want to. I certainly am pulling for him.I was vocal going into last year what a difference he( a bigger RB) was going to make back there. I actually thought he was the reason we didn’t need to pull RS over, but the staff obviously knew what I didn’t. He came into camp unprepared, didn’t compete, almost quite (did really) and then got himself suspended. I never understood why fans then bragged about what “heart” he had after he finally decided he would carry the ball a couple of times, but rode Crowell so bad for not playing more on torn ligaments.

AltamahaDawg

March 22nd, 2012
10:50 am

Big Wally Butts

March 22nd, 2012
12:07 pm

@DawginLex
don’t know if that is Kool-Aide that you are drinking, but I like you prognostication. Hope you are right.
@AltamahaDawg
Boo is alright. Just a young kid trying to figure it out. A lot happens after the first year or two of college in terms of maturity. Let’s hope that he has matured some (sounds like it).

[...] injured either, but missed two straight practices due to a “a personal, private issue,” according to head coach Mark Richt, and it had nothing to do with any sort of disciplinary action taken by the university or [...]

Jborodawg

March 23rd, 2012
12:30 pm

AltamahaDawg….I still ‘kinda’ like Bobo. I don’t think he’s nearly as bad as some commenters say he is. I don’t think he’s that predictable either. It’s up to the players to execute the plays he calls. On the other hand, if they’re not executing, maybe it is his fault (along with the O-line coaches fault and the RB coaches fault).

atlxmen

March 23rd, 2012
12:47 pm

i disagree with the post about AM…is getting better each year. you seem to forget that the off line struggled most of the year along with the running game so uga counted on AM to do a ton of things as a red shirt soph. i do agree lemay is the future but not until AM is gone. so glad lemay red shirted as uga is now set up for years to come at the qb position. AM had a really good game against south carolina last year..4tds and 1 int with close to 300 yards..the int was orsons fault for not sitting down and catching the ball for a first down, instead he kept running the drag route.

this yr will be AM best year yet..he is a red shirt jr with more experience than any qb on the roster and should have a pretty good running game to help him out. makes no sense to sit him now unless lemay beats him out . only way that happens is if AM lays down and quits. im thinking uga will have a ton more blowouts this year where lemay will get his chance to gain some experience which will be good. we will see a ton of i-formatiion this year as the running game gets better i promise you..thats what bobo and richt want ..to run a more balance pro style offense to kepp the defense guessing. just need the big guys up front to open some holes.

atlxmen

March 23rd, 2012
12:50 pm

i like bobo too..he has had a ton of young players the last few years running his offense . an offense that calls for nearly perfect execution on every play as one play sets up the next and so on and so on…this year will be a great year for the dawgs

Fan

March 26th, 2012
4:23 am

Saw Zach DeBell in a bar downtown Friday night – appeared to be moving around just fine to me (though, doesn’t mean something isn’t wrong still).

Honestly, what gets to me is all the underage players in bars. I understand they’re college kids looking to have a good time – I get it. However, they’re here on a free ride and have a greater responsibility to keep their noses clean, especially being under the microscope so much. DeBell is pretty easy to spot at 6′7″ 273 lbs. Anyone that follows football knows he’s only a freshman – not 21. Most bars downtown are 21 and up. Gotta be smarter about that. I remember seeing Matthew Stafford and Knowshon Moreno in the bars when they were freshmen and sophomores. Come on guys, people know who you are and know you’re not 21. The cops know that too, and you’re asking for trouble / to be arrested. Sorry, but that’s how it is. I distinctly remember a cop going up to Stafford when he was waiting in line to enter a bar, stating “Look, I know who you are and I know you’re not 21. If you go in that bar, I’m going to have to arrest you. I’d suggest walking away.” Fortunately, Stafford wisely took him up on that offer. Stop putting yourselves in such compromising situations. I’ve lost count of the undeage athletes I’ve in bars over the years. It’s just not worth it.

Guydogbob

March 26th, 2012
6:03 am

Can hardly wait. The DAWGS seem to be ON-THE-BALL-Hal-a-LU-LU-YA! I’m too old to wait around; I want to start tomorrow, ha!
GO DAWGS AND BRING HOME THE BACOM AND HAM AND BISCUITS AND GRITS. EAT MORE STEAK BOYS. GOOD LUCK TO ALL OF US!

Michael

March 27th, 2012
12:05 pm

@Fan There are many bars in Athens that are 18 – to enter and 21 – to drink.

suwanee dawg

March 27th, 2012
12:26 pm

Move Samuel to FB. A suprise dive up the middle going 80 seems right.

Jimmy Crack

March 27th, 2012
12:39 pm

“I’ve lost count of the undeage athletes I’ve in bars over the years”.

“Fan” sounds more like “Stalker”, especially if you don’t know the rules of the bars in Athens that you apparently haunt (if you were there at all).

Nick

March 27th, 2012
12:50 pm

Thinking about these mat drills and discipline, I know CMR has over the years brought in consultants to help with various phases of the game, or nutrition or whatever the case may be. I wonder what his thoughts would be like to have someone from the Marine Corps come in and “coach” for a few weeks? I keep thinking about Full Metal jacket, just toned down a bit on the profanity!

dogSTILE

March 27th, 2012
1:50 pm

I know UGA is a little thin at DB now. Help is on the way and some players changing positions should help. Has anyone but me heard of that “wunderkid” in VEDETTE, BURKE COUNTY GEORGIA? His name is Seaton Forskin. He had missed most of the last two years of football in Burke County with injuries. This kid is a sprinter with SIZE. Try 6-1 and 195 lbs. he is so quick he makes plays people can’t believe. He want to play football in college, Maybe CMR should give him a try. The kid spends all his EXTRA time after track practice picking up what he can in class (laptops, cell phones). Great character, if he is not visiting his dad in county jail, or his mom in state prison, or his brother in juvie he doing his community service for shoplifting in Wal-Mart. This kid could FIT at UGA. Goolge the name. watch the tapes, this one can’t miss. Where are dawginLEX, dogGONEit, and the other “usual suspects” on this one?

Dawg Haus

March 27th, 2012
1:50 pm

I like what I’ve seen from Boo, but he doesn’t seem to get his fair share of carries. If he can ever get significant playing time, I think we have yet another solid horse in the stable.

Fan

March 27th, 2012
2:07 pm

@Michael – True, but the ones I was referring to were 21 and up to enter.
@Crack – Please enlighten me on these “rules” you speak of. It’s illegal to enter a 21 and up bar as a patron if you’re 18/19. Want me to post a link to the law for you? Also, just because I recognize an athelete when I’m in a bar doesn’t make me a stalker. Go ahead and think what you want if it helps you sleep better at night. I’m all for them having a good time, partying, and being college kids. My point is that they need to be more careful about it because they are so recognizable and under the microscope. When 92,746 people at the stadium and many others on TV see them play on Saturday, you honestly think no one else would recognize them at a bar later that night? hmmm

Bama=home of the T-bag special

March 27th, 2012
2:20 pm

@dogSTILE sorry that young man has his eye set on a Grey Shirt and besides we all know Forekins always go to Bama…