Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Georgia-Georgia Tech game time set

The Georgia-Georgia Tech football game on Nov. 24 will kick off at noon, the SEC said today.

The game, in Athens, will be televised by ESPN.

CBS chose the Alabama-Auburn game for its 3:30 p.m. SEC telecast on Nov. 24.

Continue reading Georgia-Georgia Tech game time set »

BCS standings: Kansas State No. 1, SEC out of top 3, Georgia still behind Bama at No. 5

The SEC, which has won college football’s past six national championships, will be shut out of this season’s title game if the latest Bowl Championship Series standings hold up.

Alabama’s loss to Texas A&M on Saturday dropped the Crimson Tide from No. 1 to No. 4 in the BCS standings, behind three undefeated teams — No. 1 Kansas State, No. 2 Oregon and No. 3 Notre Dame — and ahead of No. 5 Georgia.

The top two teams in the final BCS standings, which will be released Dec. 2, meet for the national title Jan. 7 in Miami.

The latest standings, released Sunday night, hardly shut the door to the title game for the SEC. But for an SEC team to get there at this point apparently would require that two of the top three teams, all of which are 10-0, lose a game in the next few weeks.

If that happens, and if Georgia and Alabama win their final two regular-season games to carry 11-1 records into the SEC Championship game, the winner of the Dec. 1 game in the Georgia Dome could move into the …

Continue reading BCS standings: Kansas State No. 1, SEC out of top 3, Georgia still behind Bama at No. 5 »

Georgia-Auburn quotes: ‘We just came out here with a mentality to shut them out and get the offense rolling’

WHAT THEY SAID AFTER GEORGIA’S 38-0 WIN OVER AUBURN

“It was a very outstanding performance by everybody — offense, defense, special teams.”

— Georgia coach Mark Richt

“We’re very excited about winning the East. We’re very excited about going to Atlanta. There’s no doubt about that. There’s a lot of work to be done between now and then. … I think we’ve been improving as we go, and hopefully we keep it going.”

— Richt on clinching the SEC East title and a berth in the SEC Championship game at the Georgia Dome

“Georgia is a very good football team. They are certainly worthy of their ranking. But I didn’t feel like we played well in any phase of the game.”

— Auburn coach Gene Chizik

“Our goal really was to start fast. That’s why we came out with the up-tempo, the no-huddle. We do no-huddle all the time, but we went a faster pace no-huddle with some set plays. … (Auburn) had done a great job of defending pro-style offenses all year, and the spread had given them a little trouble. …

Continue reading Georgia-Auburn quotes: ‘We just came out here with a mentality to shut them out and get the offense rolling’ »

UPDATED: After beating Auburn to win East, Bulldogs focus sights on bigger goals

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Georgia's Christian Robinson (45) and Devin Bowman (37) celebrate among their fans, who came to Auburn in large numbers in anticipation of clincing the SEC East. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

Georgia's Christian Robinson (45) and Devin Bowman (37) celebrate among their fans, who came to Auburn in large numbers in anticipation of clincing the SEC East. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

AUBURN, Ala. – The Dogs are back in the Dome. But that’s not the end-goal this time around.

With a resounding 38-0 win over Auburn Saturday night at Jordan-Hare Stadium, No. 5-ranked Georgia clinched a berth in the SEC Championship game for a second year in a row.

The Bulldogs (9-1, 7-1 SEC) closed out the conference season tied with Florida (9-1, 7-1) as SEC Eastern Division champions. But they will represent the East  in the Georgia Dome on Dec. 1 based on their 17-9 win over the Gators on Oct. 27. South Carolina (8-2, 6-2), which beat Georgia 35-7 on Oct. 6, finishes third in the East.

“This feels great,” senior safety Bacarri Rambo said. “This is what all the seniors and everybody that stayed out of the NFL came back for. We still haven’t finished. This is just a ticket to the …

Continue reading UPDATED: After beating Auburn to win East, Bulldogs focus sights on bigger goals »

UGA AD Greg McGarity likes direction of basketball program under Mark Fox

Georgia coach Mark Richt, here with point guard Vincent Williams, hasn't won big with the Bulldogs. He's 50-46 entering his fourth season. But AD Greg McGarity believes Fox is "doing things the right way" and building a strong foundation for the future. (AJC photo by Jason Getz)

Georgia coach Mark Fox, here with point guard Vincent Williams, hasn't won big with the Bulldogs. He's 50-46 entering his fourth season. But AD Greg McGarity believes Fox is "doing things the right way" and building a strong foundation for the future. (AJC photo by Jason Getz)

ATHENS — The fourth season of the Mark Fox era of Georgia basketball gets under way Friday when the Bulldogs play host to Jacksonville in the season opener at Stegeman Coliseum.

Generally the fourth year of a coach’s tenure is thought to be a make-or-break time in the ruthless world of modern college athletics. As Fox himself pointed out in the preseason, this is the first year he has recruited every player on his roster.

But Georgia athletic director Greg McGarity doesn’t sound like an administrator who is looking to throw down any ultimatums this season.

“I have all the confidence in the world Mark’s going to lead our program in the right way and in a way we can all be proud of,” McGarity said. “I …

Continue reading UGA AD Greg McGarity likes direction of basketball program under Mark Fox »

Notebook: WR Chris Conley ready again to step up for a fallen comrade

Georgia's Chris Conley (31) gives the Bulldogs more of a vertical threat at the slot receiver than they had with Marlon Brown and Michael Bennett. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

Georgia's Chris Conley (31) gives the Bulldogs more of a vertical threat at the slot receiver than they had with Marlon Brown and Michael Bennett. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

ATHENS — This is getting to be old hat for Georgia’s Chris Conley.

Conley, a sophomore wide receiver from Paulding County, has emerged as the chief replacement for injured starter Marlon Brown. Brown, a senior and the Bulldogs’ co-leader with 27 receptions, was lost for the season to a knee injury against Ole Miss this past Saturday.

In Georgia’s base offensive set, the Bulldogs will go with senior Tavarres King and sophomore Malcolm Mitchell at their two wideout positions. But when they go to three wides – and Georgia has done that quite often this season – it’s the talented and capable Conley who will step into Brown’s all important slot position.

Georgia’s coaches made that determination this week and, really, well before that.

“Conley was starting to play a little Y, the slot receiver, for us …

Continue reading Notebook: WR Chris Conley ready again to step up for a fallen comrade »

Bulldogs will face Brian VanGorder, Willie Martinez at Auburn

ATHENS – Three current and former Georgia defensive coordinators will be on hand Saturday night when the Bulldogs play at Auburn.

On one side, of course, will be Todd Grantham, in his third season as Georgia’s defensive coordinator. On the other side: Grantham’s two immediate predecessors.

Willie Martinez, a member of Georgia’s coaching staff from 2001-09 and defensive coordinator from 2005-09, is in his first season as Auburn’s defensive backs coach. Brian VanGorder, Georgia’s defensive coordinator from 2001-04, is in his first season as defensive coordinator at Auburn, his fourth employer since leaving UGA.

VanGorder left Athens on his own accord for a job as linebackers coach with the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars. After one season in Jacksonville, VanGorder spent a year as head coach at Georgia Southern and five years with the Falcons, the first as linebackers coach and the last four as defensive coordinator.

Martinez, fired by Georgia coach Mark Richt after the 2009 regular …

Continue reading Bulldogs will face Brian VanGorder, Willie Martinez at Auburn »

Georgia advances to No. 5 in BCS standings

In a weekend that saw them move closer to the SEC Championship game, the Georgia Bulldogs also inched up in the Bowl Championship Series standings.

Georgia climbed one spot to No. 5 in the latest BCS standings, released Sunday night, becoming the highest ranked one-loss team and the second highest ranked SEC team.

Alabama remained No. 1 after Saturday’s last-minute 21-17 victory at LSU. Kansas State stayed No. 2, while last week’s Nos. 3 and 4 teams swapped positions – Oregon climbing to No. 3 and Notre Dame dipping to No. 4.

Georgia replaced LSU at No. 5 after staying on track for the SEC Championship game by beating Ole Miss.

Georgia will represent the SEC East in the Dec. 1 game at the Georgia Dome if it wins at Auburn on Saturday. Alabama will represent the Western Division in the Dome if it wins either of its two remaining league games: Saturday vs. Texas A&M and Nov. 24 vs. Auburn.

The top two teams in the final BCS standings will play for the national title Jan. 7 in …

Continue reading Georgia advances to No. 5 in BCS standings »

Ogletree twins Alec and Zander put together night to remember for Mom and Dad

Junior linebacker Alec Ogletree leaped sky high to snatch his first career interception Saturday against Ole Miss. Ogletree also led the Bulldogs with 11 tackles and recorded a tackle for a loss for a safety. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

Junior linebacker Alec Ogletree leaped sky high to snatch his first career interception Saturday against Ole Miss. Ogletree also led the Bulldogs with 11 tackles and recorded a tackle for a loss for a safety. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

ATHENS — It was a very good night for Mr. and Mrs. Ogletree.

That’s because it was a great night for their two sons, both of whom play for the Georgia Bulldogs, 37-10 winners over Ole Miss on Saturday.

Alec Ogletree, a 6-foot-3, 241-pound linebacker. from Newnan, put up this stat line on defense –  11 tackles, an interception, a sack, a tackle for loss. Oh, and that tackle loss was good for two points.

“It was great,” said Ogletree,  “It was my first safety and my first interception, so it was kind of a big game.”

Alec’s twin brother Zander Ogletree score his first career touchdown on an eight-yard run. Also a junior, Zander plays fullback for the Bulldogs and got his first start of the season and just the second of his career on …

Continue reading Ogletree twins Alec and Zander put together night to remember for Mom and Dad »

Big pass plays turned momentum to UGA

This 40-yard touchdown reception by Tavarres King 3 seconds before halftime proved to be a real momentun turner for the Bulldogs. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

This 40-yard touchdown reception by Tavarres King 3 seconds before halftime proved to be a real momentun turner for the Bulldogs. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

ATHENS — Georgia had 73 offensive plays in Saturday’s victory over Ole Miss, but two stood out.

The first, notable for quarterback Aaron Murray’s convincing acting job, went for a 66-yard touchdown pass. The second, notable for its timing, went for a 40-yard touchdown pass.

Both came in the second quarter, enabling Georgia to turn a 10-0 deficit into a 14-10 halftime lead and establish the momentum that fueled a second-half rout.

To recap the improbable plays:

  • On third-and-1 from the Georgia 34 with about 10 minutes left in the half, Murray faked a handoff to tailback Todd Gurley and casually took a couple of steps seemingly away from the play, concealing from the defense that he still had the ball. Ole Miss bit on the fake as badly as can be bitten. By the time Murray turned back around and threw the ball, receiver …

Continue reading Big pass plays turned momentum to UGA »

On pace for 1,000-yard season, Todd Gurley ‘doesn’t seem like a freshman’

Todd Gurley before his first Georgia-Florida game. (AJC photo/Bob Andres)

Todd Gurley before his first Georgia-Florida game. (AJC photo/Bob Andres)

ATHENS – His teammates and coaches marvel that Todd Gurley doesn’t seem like a freshman, and the Georgia tailback is piling up statistics that quantify their point.

Two-thirds of the way through the regular season, Gurley is on pace to become just the second true freshman in Georgia football history to rush for 1,000 yards. His most impressive game yet — 118 yards on 27 fumble-free carries against a Florida defense that had not allowed a 100-yard rusher all season — lifted Gurley’s rushing total to 740 yards, which projects to 1,110 by the end of the regular season.

That would rank behind only you-know-who among first-year Bulldogs.

Herschel Walker ran for 1,616 yards in Georgia’s national-championship season of 1980, but the next most rushing yards by a UGA first-year freshman is Rodney Hampton’s 890 in 1987. One caveat: Knowshon Moreno ran for 1,334 yards in his debut season in 2007, but Moreno …

Continue reading On pace for 1,000-yard season, Todd Gurley ‘doesn’t seem like a freshman’ »

Ole Miss LB Denzel Nkemdiche on UGA: ‘This game is extremely personal’

Ole Miss redshirt freshman linebacker Denzel Nkemdiche of Grayson leads the Rebels in tackles, tackles for loss, forced fumbles and interceptions. (Photo by 247Sports.com)

Ole Miss redshirt freshman linebacker Denzel Nkemdiche of Grayson leads the Rebels in tackles, tackles for loss, forced fumbles and interceptions. (Photo by 247Sports.com)

By MICHAEL CARVELL
AJC Recruiting Reporter

Ole Miss linebacker Denzel Nkemdiche began the season known as the brother of the nation’s No. 1-ranked high school senior, Robert. But he’s quickly making a name for himself in the SEC, becoming a vocal leader and one of the league’s better young players.

Nkemdiche, a Grayson High graduate, feels like he has something to prove when Ole Miss (5-3) goes for the upset against No. 6 Georgia (7-1) at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

“The excitement is unreal. This is like a homecoming for me, and I just can’t explain how excited I am to play between the hedges,” Nkemdiche said. “I’m going to have so many friends and family there. This game is extremely personal.”

At 5 feet 11, 203 pounds, he’s the leading tackler for Ole Miss and will bring a little extra motivation this …

Continue reading Ole Miss LB Denzel Nkemdiche on UGA: ‘This game is extremely personal’ »

Georgia’s players lay it on line for coaches as much as championships

Georgia nose guard John Jenkins and many other players don't take kindly to the incessant bashing their coaches receive from some fans. (UGA photo by John Kelley)

Georgia nose guard John Jenkins and many other players don't take kindly to the incessant bashing their coaches receive from some fans. (UGA photo by John Kelley)

ATHENS — Moments after Georgia put the finishing touches on its 17-9 win over No. 2 Florida this past Saturday, coach Mark Richt and senior noseguard John Jenkins hugged near midfield. They spoke animatedly, laughed hard and hugged again. It was clearly a moment of unbridled joy.

Richt was asked Tuesday to recount their conversation, but he opted to keep their exchange to himself.

“I remember what it’s about but I won’t say,” Richt said with a grin. “But it was a good thing. Sometimes I’ll say some things to the team and I won’t even remember what I said to them. Then they’ll bring it up after the game. They’ll say, ‘we took care of you’ or ‘we had your back’ or whatever. It was one of those kinds of conversations.”

According to Jenkins, it was definitely one of those “we had your back” conversations.

In …

Continue reading Georgia’s players lay it on line for coaches as much as championships »

A look at UGA’s next opponent: Ole Miss

GEORGIA’S NEXT OPPONENT

Who: vs. Mississippi

When: 3:30 p.m. Saturday

TV; radio: CBS; 750, 95.5

About Mississippi

Record: 5-3, 2-2 SEC

Last time played: Georgia defeated Ole Miss 27-13 in Oxford last season.

Offense: Ole Miss has a balanced, up-tempo offense that ranks fifth in the SEC in passing, sixth in rushing and sixth in scoring. Sophomore quarterback Bo Wallace completed 29 of 37 passes for 278 yards and ran for 38 yards in last week’s 30-27 win over Arkansas. Running back Jeff Scott, a 5-foot-7, 170-pound junior, ranks fifth in the SEC with 87.4 rushing yards per game. Wide receiver Donte Moncrief is sixth in the SEC in receiving yards (67.5 per game). Randall Mackey, who moved from quarterback to wide receiver in the spring and added running back to his portfolio this fall, made his first start at receiver last week and caught seven passes for 99 yards.

Defense: Ole Miss ranks ninth in the SEC in total defense, rushing defense and passing defense. Redshirt freshman …

Continue reading A look at UGA’s next opponent: Ole Miss »

Report: Florida strength coach shoved Georgia’s Corey Moore

Best account I’ve seen yet of the pregame skirmish that occurred before Georgia-Florida this past Saturday comes from Palm Beach Post reporter Jason Lieser.

I didn’t see but the very tail-end of the incident myself as it happened right around the time they were preparing for the pregame toss. But according to Lieser, Florida safety Matt Elam instigated the incident by bumping Georgia’s Devin Bowman. Apparently a bunch of Georgia players then responded to the taunts of Elam and teammate Dominique Easley, including Todd Gurley, Malcolm Mitchell, Corey Moore and Arthur Lynch.

Liesler reports that Florida strength coach Jeff Dillman interceded and ended up shoving Moore. That drew Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham and some other assistant coaches and referees into the fray. This is the part I saw and skirmish quickly dissipated with both sides squawking as they went their separate ways.

Wrote Lieser:

Gators strength coach Jeff Dillman, who later had at least one very …

Continue reading Report: Florida strength coach shoved Georgia’s Corey Moore »

Georgia-Auburn game time set

Georgia’s Nov. 10 football game at Auburn will kick off at 7  p.m. and be televised on ESPN2, the SEC announced today.

If Georgia defeats Ole Miss in Athens on Saturday, the Bulldogs will be in position to clinch the SEC East championship and a berth in the SEC Championship game by winning at Auburn.

The Georgia-Ole Miss game will kick off at 3:30 p.m. Saturday and be nationally televised on CBS, the Bulldogs’ second consecutive game on that network.

In other news today — albeit not surprising — Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones was named the SEC Defensive Player of the Week for his performance in the win over Florida. Jones had a career-high 13 tackles (12 solo), including 4.5 tackles for loss and three sacks. He also forced two fumbles and recovered two fumbles.

Continue reading Georgia-Auburn game time set »

UGA jumps to No. 6 in BCS standings

Georgia soared to No. 6 in this week’s Bowl Championship Series standings after Saturday’s victory over previously No. 2 Florida.

Ranked No. 10 last week, the Bulldogs also benefited from losses by three other teams that had been ahead of them in the BCS standings — Oregon State, Oklahoma and USC.

Alabama remained a solid No. 1 in the latest set of standings, released Sunday night. Kansas State moved up one spot to replace Florida at No. 2. Notre Dame jumped two spots to No. 3, while Oregon remained No. 4. The top four teams are undefeated.

Four SEC teams fill the Nos. 5 through 8 positions this week — LSU, Georgia, Florida and South Carolina in that order. LSU, Georgia and Florida have one loss apiece. South Carolina has two losses.

The top two teams in the BCS standings after the regular season and conference championship games will meet for the national title Jan. 7 in Miami.

In addition to Georgia’s upset win over Florida, other movers of the BCS standings this week were …

Continue reading UGA jumps to No. 6 in BCS standings »

CBS picks up Georgia-Ole Miss game; Dogs move up to 6th in coaches poll, 7th in AP

ATHENS — For a second straight week, Georgia will play in the 3:30 p.m. game on CBS.

The national television network exercised its six-day option on Sunday and picked up the Bulldogs’ game against Ole Miss this Saturday at Sanford Stadium. CBS carried this past Saturday’s game between Georgia and then-No. 2 Florida, which the Bulldogs won 17-9. The Rebels (5-3, 2-2 SEC) are coming off a 30-27 win over Arkansas in Little Rock.

It will mark Georgia’s third appearance on CBS this season. The network also carried Georgia ’s 51-44 win over Tennessee in Athens on Sept. 29. Overall, the Bulldogs have appeared on CBS 70 times and posted a record of 40-29-1.

In related news, the Bulldogs moved up to No. 7 in the latest Associated Press Top 25 poll and to No. 6 in the USA Today Coaches Poll. Georgia, which was No. 10 this past week, should also moved up in the BCS rankings, which will be released tonight.

GEORGIA-FLORIDA GAME COVERAGE

Continue reading CBS picks up Georgia-Ole Miss game; Dogs move up to 6th in coaches poll, 7th in AP »

‘Hurricane Jarvis’ sweeps through Florida’s offense for 17-9 Georgia win

Georgia's Jarvis Jones comes up with one of his two fumble recoveries against Florida. He also caused two fumbles and recorded 13 tackles and three sacks in his first game back from injury. (AJC photo  by Bob Andres)

Georgia's Jarvis Jones comes up with one of his two fumble recoveries against Florida. He also caused two fumbles and recorded 13 tackles and three sacks in his first game back from injury. (AJC photo by Bob Andres)

JACKSONVILLE — Never mind all that “soft defense” talk. Georgia had Jarvis Jones back in the lineup.

The Bulldogs’ dynamic outside linebacker, who has missed two games with injuries and been hobbled much of the season’s first half, was feeling good and healthy on Saturday. Just ask Florida, which felt his wrath all night.

The 2011 All-American terrorized the Gators all night, finishing with 13 tackles, three quarterback sacks, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. Jones wasn’t the only reason, but he was a big reason the No. 10-ranked Bulldogs were able to knock off the No. 2 Gators 17-9 Saturday night at EverBank Field.

The victory gives puts the Bulldogs (7-1, 5-1 SEC) into the driver’s seat to repeat as SEC East champions and represent the division …

Continue reading ‘Hurricane Jarvis’ sweeps through Florida’s offense for 17-9 Georgia win »

Georgia gets yet another shot at Top 10 opponent; that it’s Florida is just a bonus

Georgia coach Mark Richt and the Bulldogs hope to be celebrating at the end of the Florida game like they were this time last year. (AJC photo by Jason Getz)

Georgia coach Mark Richt and the Bulldogs hope to be celebrating at the end of the Florida game like they were this time last year. (AJC photo by Jason Getz)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – In September 2010, during his first year as Georgia’s athletic director, Greg McGarity had a meeting with all of the Bulldogs’ head coaches. He had several messages he wanted to convey, but one of the main ones was this: Don’t make Florida games bigger than any other.

McGarity has a unique perspective on the Georgia-Florida rivalry. A UGA graduate and one-time coach and athletic administrator for the Bulldogs, he also spent 18 years as the No. 2 man in the Gators’ athletic department. McGarity happened to arrive in Gainesville, Fla., not long after Steve Spurrier took over as football coach and swung the series in Florida’s direction.

During that time, McGarity noticed a trend among his former constituency. Defeating Florida — in any sport, but especially football — had become a fixation. …

Continue reading Georgia gets yet another shot at Top 10 opponent; that it’s Florida is just a bonus »

New teams command attention at SEC hoops Media Day

HOOVER, Ala. – Missouri is still seeking its first SEC win in football, but it figures to find faster success in its new league in basketball.

According to a preseason media survey, Missouri already is regarded as the third-best men’s basketball team in the 14-member SEC — behind only Kentucky, which won the national championship last season, and Florida, which reached the Elite Eight. And Missouri might have the league’s best player, junior point guard Phil Pressey, voted the SEC preseason player of the year by the same media panel.

The new teams on the block, Missouri and Texas A&M, were popular topics of conversation at the SEC’s annual Basketball Media Day, held here Thursday.

“They’re going to make us a bigger and deeper and better league,” Kentucky coach John Calipari said. “They’re good programs, both of them.”

Much of the discussion Thursday focused on Missouri, which was ranked among the nation’s top five teams for much of last season and won its final Big 12 …

Continue reading New teams command attention at SEC hoops Media Day »

Georgia’s Malcolm Mitchell excited about getting ball in his hands against Florida

Malcolm Mitchell said there is nothing better to him than having the football in his hands and trying to make a play. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

Malcolm Mitchell said there is nothing better to him than having the football in his hands and trying to make a play. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

ATHENS – In the first half of the Kentucky game this past Saturday, Malcolm Mitchell fielded a kickoff eight yards deep in his end zone. He took off to bring it out before Georgia’s Kyle Karempelis jumped in front with an emphatic stop sign at the goal line. Mitchell slammed on the brakes, then gave Karempelis a disgusted wave of contempt before taking a reluctant knee.

“I apologized later,” Mitchell said with a laugh. “I told Kyle, no matter what I say, do what you have to do and, if I try to run out of there, just tackle me right there in the end zone.”

Such is Mitchell’s mentality. He rarely fields a punt or a kick or takes a handoff or catches a pass he doesn’t think he can take “to the house.” That confidence coupled with Mitchell’s unique set of athletic gifts has made him into one of the league’s most dynamic …

Continue reading Georgia’s Malcolm Mitchell excited about getting ball in his hands against Florida »

Notebook: Georgia’s offensive line will be shuffling again against Gators

ATHENS — Georgia’s offensive line will be shuffling again in the Florida game.

Juniors Dallas Lee and Kenarious Gates are expected to start as usual at left guard and tackle, respectively. But Lee has been playing on a bad ankle since the Tennessee game. So the Bulldogs are increasingly turning to junior college transfer Mark Beard, who they bring in at left tackle and slide Gates inside to guard when Lee needs to come out of games.

Beard played extensively this past Saturday against Kentucky. Lee continues to practice rather than rest the ankle, so his durability on Saturday will be closely monitored.

“Dallas has got to get healthy,” said offensive coordinator Mike Bobo, who called this a “competition week” to determine playing time on Saturday. “But it’s good that Mark got a lot of experience last week.”

Beard, a 6-foot-5, 305-pound sophomore, is starting to resemble the player Georgia thought it had recruited out of Coffeyville Community College in Kansas.

“I think …

Continue reading Notebook: Georgia’s offensive line will be shuffling again against Gators »

Georgia’s Mike Gilliard: ‘I felt disrespected and, yes, I definitely took it personally’

Linebacker Mike Gillard, here tackling a Florida Atlantic player, was not at all happy about Shawn Williams' characterization of his play at inside linebacker. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

Linebacker Mike Gillard, here tackling a Florida Atlantic player, was not at all happy about Shawn Williams' characterization of his play at inside linebacker. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

ATHENS — OK, here are a few addendum’s from Tuesday’s post-practice interview opportunities. Todd Grantham, Mike Gilliard and Jarvis Jones talked about Shawn Williams’ comments on the defense and a few other things. So here they are kind of raw and unabridged:

SENIOR LINEBACKER MIKE GILLIARD:

On Williams’ remarks about Amarlo Herrera being the better linebacker . . .

“As a man, I wasn’t hurt at all. I felt disrespected. And, yes, I definitely took it personally. Today in the linebackers meeting, I stood up and told them, ‘no disrespect to Amarlo and Ogletree, but when I read that I felt disrespected and I’ll definitely taking it personally. But there’s no issue between me and Shawn Williams. All it is is fuel for the fire and basically its given me motivation to go out there and give …

Continue reading Georgia’s Mike Gilliard: ‘I felt disrespected and, yes, I definitely took it personally’ »

UPDATED: Georgia players and coaches react to Shawn Williams ’soft defense’ comments

Georgia safety Shawn Williams believes Amarlo Herrera (52) should be playing the Mike linebacker more than Christian Robinson. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

Georgia safety Shawn Williams believes Amarlo Herrera (52) should be playing the Mike linebacker more than Christian Robinson. (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

ATHENS – Reaction to the incendiary comments from Georgia safety Shawn Williams about the Bulldogs “soft” defense and what players should be playing and how much fell mostly into two categories for teammates and coaches on Tuesday: One, there was a level of truth in what he said and, two, it was no big deal.

Overall Williams’ comments were considered as a motivational ploy by an impassioned player.

“I think Shawn is just a real passionate guy,” Georgia coach Mark Richt said. “He loves Georgia and loves his team and wants us to play the best we can possibly play. . . . I think it was more public than you’d like. But, I mean, I really don’t think he meant any harm by it. I really don’t. I think his teammates know that and so it’s really not an issue.”

Williams told reporters after Monday night’s practice he thought …

Continue reading UPDATED: Georgia players and coaches react to Shawn Williams ’soft defense’ comments »

Notebook: OLB Jordan Jenkins not flashy but gets job done for Bulldogs

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Jordan Jenkins’ stats in his second career start won’t win him any awards. The freshman outside linebacker from Harris County – starting in place of injured All-American Jarvis Jones – finished with just two tackles and was given half-credit for a tackle for loss.

But defensive coordinator Todd Grantham was heaping praise on the young understudy after Georgia’s 29-24 win over Kentucky. He was particularly pleased about Jenkins’ actions on one play for which Jenkins got no statistical credit.

Kentucky ran a reverse right with wide receiver Demarco Robinson on a critical third-quarter drive. Jenkins was not fooled, however, and held his ground on the offense’s right flank. Robinson had to turn up field and Alec Ogletree took down Robinson hard for a six-yard loss. The third-down play simultaneously took Kentucky out of field-goal and four-down range.

“Actually we ran that same play on him in practice and it wasn’t as successful,” Grantham said with a grin. “So …

Continue reading Notebook: OLB Jordan Jenkins not flashy but gets job done for Bulldogs »

With an eye on Florida, concentration will be key for Bulldogs against Kentucky

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Georgia coach Mark Richt grabbed a microphone and stepped on a stage at UGA’s Legion Field on Thursday night and declared himself a Florida Gators fan.

“Believe it or not, I am cheering for the Gators this weekend,” Richt told a thousand or so Georgia students and fans gathered there to hear a Jason Aldean concert. “We need them to beat South Carolina to get us back in the driver’s seat.”

Losing a game in the SEC certainly makes for strange bedfellows.

The Bulldogs (5-1, 3-1 SEC) were unceremoniously dispatched by South Carolina 35-7 in Columbia, S.C., on Oct. 6. But during Georgia’s bye last weekend, the Gamecocks lost at LSU.

That means a loss by South Carolina (6-1, 4-1) to No. 2 Florida (6-0, 5-0) on Saturday — coupled by a Georgia win over Kentucky — will set up what essentially will be an SEC Eastern Division elimination game for the Bulldogs against the Gators next week in Jacksonville. A Georgia win in that game would give them the head-to-head …

Continue reading With an eye on Florida, concentration will be key for Bulldogs against Kentucky »

UGA freshman Jordan Jenkins says he’s ready if Jarvis Jones can’t go

Freshman outside linebacker Jordan Jenkins recovers a fumble against Missouri in his second game with the Bulldogs. (UGA photo by Rob Saye)

Freshman outside linebacker Jordan Jenkins recovers a fumble against Missouri in his second game with the Bulldogs. (UGA photo by Rob Saye)

ATHENS – Jordan Jenkins says he hopes his friend and position-mate Jarvis Jones will be able to play against Kentucky this Saturday. But his comments belie him.

Jones, Georgia’s All-American outside linebacker, did not practice again on Wednesday. He has now missed every workout since he suffered a right ankle injury in the Bulldogs’ loss to South Carolina Oct. 6. And because of the off week, the Wednesday practice represented what would normally be the Thursday walk-through on a game week.

In other words, it doesn’t look like Jones is in position to start, much less play, against the Wildcats. And Jenkins, his backup at the weakside outside linebacker position, doesn’t seem too bummed about it.

“I’ve been thinking on it,” Jenkins said following Wednesday’s practice. “If (Jones) doesn’t play or plays hurt a little …

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Bulldogs eager for Marcus Thornton to be healthy as basketball practice begins

When healthy, Marcus has proven to be a physical inside presence and strong rebounder for Georgia. (AJC photo by Curtis Comption)

When healthy, Marcus has proven to be a physical inside presence and strong rebounder for Georgia. (AJC photo by Curtis Comption)

ATHENS — Marcus Thornton said the last time he felt 100 percent healthy was the semifinals of the state high school playoffs his senior year at Westlake High.

That day Thornton suffered a bizarre injury. He sprained his left ankle jumping up in the air to chest bump a teammate. Thornton, who was named Mr. Georgia Basketball that year, has been dealing with one injury or another ever since.

Now a junior at the University of Georgia, the 6-foot-8, 230-pound forward is still trying to get well. He’s coming off his second knee surgery – he’s had one on each leg – but is oh so close to feeling normal again as the Bulldogs prepare to open the season.

“I’m getting there,” said Thornton, who also has dealt with a staph infection his right elbow while at Georgia. “Ever since I’ve been here I haven’t really felt well. So it’d be nice to feel …

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Expectations high for Georgia’s women’s basketball team

A quick update on Georgia’s women’s basketball team, which began practice this past Sunday. Coach Andy Landers met with reporters Tuesday. . . .

GEORGIA WOMEN’S BASKETBALL.

  • Last season: 22-9, 11-5 SEC
  • Starters returning: 4 – F Jasmine Hassell (13.0 ppg), G Khallidah Miller (12.4), F/G Anne Marie Armstrong (11.5), G Jasmine James (10.6)
  • Starters lost: 1 – G Meredith Mitchell (9.2 ppg)
  • Lettermen returning: 5 – G Erika Ford (5.5 ppg), F Krista Donald (5.0), F Tamika Willis (3.5), F Ebony Jones (2.0), G Danielle Bennett (1.7)
  • Newcomers: 5 – G Tiara Griffin (5-7), F Merritt Hempe (6-2), G/F Shacobia Barbee (5-10), G Marjorie Butler (5-8), F Kaelyn Causwell (6-4)

COACH ANDY LANDERS

On general outlook . . .

“Tempered excitement, this time around. . . . I like this team, I like this senior class and I like what they did in the offseason. They worked extremely hard and I like the way they handled their business. I like the way they talk; I like the way the walk. Their heads are in …

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