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College

    ATHENS Georgia football coach Kirby Smart revealed that freshman middle linebacker Nakobe Dean missed scrimmage because he was 'banged up,' but 'he's going to be fine, we think.' Dean backs up starting inside linebackers Monty Rice and Tae Crowder, but his strong spring camp has brought him great fanfare. WATCH: Kirby Smart breaks down spirited' Scrimmage Two The Bulldogs have had a healthy fall camp, the successful rehabilitation of redshirt freshman tailback Zamir White receiving the lion's share of media attention. Smart updated the health status of pivotal senior defensive linemen Julian Rochester (ACL) and David Marshall (foot) following Saturday's Scrimmage Two. ' Julian is coming off the ACL repair and he's practiced every day, (and) he does some periods with us and he does other periods with a trainer where he runs and gets his mileage up, not as much contact stuff,' Smart said. 'David does about 50 percent with us and 50 percent with a trainer. 'Julian and David are both older players, fourth-year players, who are not 100 percent. So we're trying to control their volume of reps, also giving the other guys reps. But they've practiced each day.' RELATED: 6 Georgia players who could use a strong Scrimmage Two Smart classified tailback D'Andre Swift, who was late attending Tuesday's scrimmage while receiving treatment, as 'fine.' 'D'Andre's been good,' Smart said. 'D'Andre's a leader in that group, he's very bright.' Swift's durability has come into question after he played through pain in the aftermath of double groin surgery in January of 2018, and foot and toe injuries during the season. Projected starting cornerback Tyson Campbell, who was injured in Scrimmage One, has been full-go all week and was a full participant in Scrimmage Two. Smart said quarterback D'Wan Mathis, who underwent emergency brain surgery on May 23, remains sidelined in contact drills and scrimmage. Walk-on Nathan Priestly remains the third-team quarterback behind back-up Stetson Bennett. Smart didn't specify the extent of practice that reserves Nate McBride (linebacker), Tyrique Stevenson (cornerback) and Ryland Goede (tight end). McBride missed the first scrimmage but returned earlier this week and did not appear to have any limitations. Stevenson was banged up in Scrimmage One and, while dressed out in full gear, appeared limited in Thursday's practice. Goede returned after missing a week's worth with a hand wrapped. 'We had a couple of guys who couldn't go today that haven't been able to practice some but, knock on wood, no major injuries,' Smart said. 'They're going to have (Sunday) off. Monday is going to be a light, light walkthrough.' Smart said the Bulldogs will focus on getting the team full strength as the opening game at Vanderbilt (Aug. 31) approaches. 'This is kind of where we say, okay, we've got to start getting them back, we've got to get recovery,' ' Smart said. 'We've got to get fluids. So when you have 48 hours, you can almost recover to a full extent and we're hoping to get everybody's legs back. You could see it today. 'The GPS says it. A guy that was running 19 (mph) is running 17. A guy that was running 21 is running 18, 19. They're hurting a little bit but part of that is mental toughness and the grit. They've been able to handle that.' DawgNation Georgia football fall camp Mark Webb's 'rough' start has proven beneficial Way-too-early Georgia road game rankings Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof' Zamir White hitting holes kicking and trucking' The post Georgia football injury update: Kirby Smart updates Nakobe Dean, senior D-Linemen appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHEN Kirby Smart was decidedly more pleased with Georgia football's second scrimmage of fall camp than its first. 'I thought we had a much more spirited scrimmage,' Smart said after his No. 3-ranked Bulldogs ran off approximately 135 plays at Sanford Stadium amid temperatures in the 90s. RELATED: Starters look for vindication in Scrimmage Two 'I thought both Ones units played better, which means the Two units probably didn't play as well,' Smart said. 'There were some explosive plays in the scrimmage, and I was proud of the competitive toughness.' Smart enters his fourth season as Georgia's head coach aiming for a national championship, having told the college football world that the 24-5 record his program has accumulated the past two years isn't good enough. That doesn't leave much margin for error, so Smart has leaned on himself, his staff and his players to buy into a 'Do More' mantra this offseason. RELATED: Fired-up Kirby Smart calls out lethargic' starters in Scrimmage One The first scrimmage last Saturday was characterized as 'lethargic' by the head coach, sending a message that players need step up or step out of the projected starting lineup. Smart made it clear his team responded in proper fashion, third-year quarterback Jake Fromm directing a more efficient passing game that produced more big plays. RELATED: 6 Georgia players who could use a strong Scrimmage Two ' Last scrimmage it seemed like a lot of the backs, the backfield, had some big plays,' Smart said, no doubt referring to a 50-yard TD catch by Zamir White in the first scrimmage. '(Saturday), it was the wideouts as a group. (Lawrence) Cager had one, .George (Pickens) had one, Tyler (Simmons) had one, Trey (Blount) had one.,' Smart said. 'We had several guys have explosive plays. Explosive to me is over 12, 13 yards. Kearis (Jackson) had a big one. So it seemed pretty balanced on the explosive plays.' Smart said the so-called Havoc Rate was down, an indicator the offensive units did a better job protecting the ball and avoiding tackles-for-loss in Scrimmage Two. Georgia will remain in training camp mode through the middle of next week, beginning to focus on season-opening (Aug. 31) opponent Vanderbilt on Wednesday. Georgia football coach Kirby Smart DawgNation Georgia football fall camp Mark Webb's 'rough' start has proven beneficial Way-too-early Georgia road game rankings Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof' Zamir White hitting holes kicking and trucking' The post WATCH: Georgia football coach Kirby Smart breaks down more spirited' Scrimmage Two appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia football coach Kirby Smart was setting a quick pace on Scrimmage Two day, his voice booming throughout Sanford Stadium via microphone and speakers. 'On the hop!' Smart commanded, leading his team into 7-on-7 drills that served as a warm-up for a more than 120-play scrimmage. The Bulldogs have some fine tuning to finish up before the opening game week arrives. Georgia, ranked No. 3 in the nation, opens the season at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday against Vanderbilt in Nashville. RELATED: 6 Georgia players who could use a strong Scrimmage Two Jake Fromm will enter his third season as the Bulldogs' starting quarterback. Fromm will need every bit of his experience to help meld an inexperienced receiving corps missing the top four pass catchers from a season ago. Fromm's struggles in Scrimmage One were well-documented. RELATED: Fired-up Kirby Smart calls out lethargic' starters in Scrimmage One Teammates said it went beyond the quarterback and throughout the entire first team offense. Senior tight end Charlie Woerner said last Saturday's 100-degree heat index contributed to the offensive struggles, suggesting players need to be mentally tougher. The heat index was 91 degree on this Saturday at the start of the scrimmage, and Fromm, for his part, was throwing darts in the warmups. Receivers Tommy Bush, Jaylen Johnson and Makiya Tongue had drops in the early part of practice. Meanwhile, Matt Landers, Demetris Robertson and Tyler Simmons continued to go first in the wide receivers group. Like the running backs, the receivers rotate, but it appears there's some semblance of a depth chart based on the consistency the players line up for drills at their positions. D'Andre Swift, who missed the start of practice on Tuesday, was dressed out for the scrimmage and appeared to be 100 percent. Smart will likely be asked about Swift's health following the Saturday practice. On defense, Azeez Ojulari appears to be holdingdown the top spot in the outside linebacker rotation and was a partnering will Walter Grant in warmups. Nolan Smith and Adam Anderson were working together behind them along with Robert Beal and Jermaine Johnson. Monty Rice and Tae Crowder have consistently been the first inside linebackers on the field through drill work, with Channing Tindall and Quay Walker with the twos. RELATED: J.R. Reed says defensive Havoc Rate out the roof' DawgNation Georgia football fall camp Mark Webb's 'rough' start has proven beneficial Way-too-early Georgia road game rankings Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof' D'Andre Swift returns, Brian Herrien first through drill work Skyrocketing Georgia ticket prices spiked by Notre Dame Zamir White hitting holes kicking and trucking' Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with receivers The post Georgia football on the hop' for Scrimmage Two, starters look for vindication appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Georgia football fans crave a national championship, and this season might be the year their wait comes to an end. However, the first step toward making that happen is for UGA coach Kirby Smart to lead the Bulldogs to a third-straight SEC East title. With that in mind, DawgNation is proud to present in partnership with Georgia's Own Credit Union the 'Own the East' series. A season preview content series focused on what it will take for UGA to dominate the division once again, and possibly return to the College Football Playoff. Georgia has been on an unprecedented run of recruiting success since Kirby Smart became coach in 2016. The program has never collected talent at the rate it currently is, and the result of those Signing Day wins is increased anticipation for those Bulldogs players' college debuts. 2019 will be no different in that regard. UGA signed five 5-star recruits in its most recent class offensive lineman Clay Webb, wide receiver George Pickens, defensive lineman Travon Walker and linebackers Nakobe Dean and Nolan Smith. All of them could make a significant impact this season, but they might not be the only newcomers to accomplish that feat. Some of the Bulldogs' other 2019 signees including a trio of 4-star prospects such as safety Lewis Cine, wide receiver Dominick Blaylock and defensive back Tyrique Stevenson are also in the mix for playing time based on the early buzz. In fact, it's likely all these freshmen along with most of the Bulldogs' 2019 signees will play at least some this season. UGA only redshirted five members of its 2016 class, seven from the 2017 class and eight last season which was the first year of a new NCAA rule that allowed players to retain a redshirt after playing in up to four games. However, while it's safe to assume most freshmen will play, it's still a bit of a mystery to determine which of them will play well. The SEC's recent past suggests success for a few of the newcomers is possible, but expectations should maybe be tempered a bit. For instance, only nine true freshman in the last five years have made either the coaches or Associated Press' first or second-team All-SEC teams. The last UGA player to accomplish the feat was running back Nick Chubb a first-team selection in 2014. Yet despite not showing up on many All-SEC teams in recent years, freshmen have been major contributors for some of the league's best teams including UGA in 2017 which was led to the College Football Playoff in part by two freshmen starters, quarterback Jake Fromm and then-right tackle Andrew Thomas. Could first-year players lead the Bulldogs in a similar fashion this season? It seems unlikely. UGA's depth is arguably far greater now than it was then. Take Webb for instance, He was the No. 26 recruit in the country for the class of 2019 19 spots higher than Thomas was in 2017. Yet Thomas was able to earn a starting position immediately for the Bulldogs. That probably won't be possible for Webb this season. Four of UGA's presumed offensive line starters were named to the Preseason All-SEC team and the two top backups sophomores Cade Mays and Jamaree Salyer were also 5-star recruits. The future looks bright for Webb, but he'll probably need more patience than Thomas required. The chances of early playing time might be better for Pickens and Blaylock, but what are the realistic expectations for them in year one? In 2015, two SEC freshmen eclipsed 1,000 yards receiving Alabama's Calvin Ridley and Texas A&M's Christian Kirk. However, since then, only three SEC freshmen have surpassed 600 receiving yards, and UGA has only had two freshmen exceed 300 receiving yards in the last seven years Isaac Nauta (361 yards in 2016) and Terry Godwin (379 yards in 2015). Pickens and Blaylock might not match the highs of Ridley and Kirk, but they have a strong chance to outpace what has been the typical freshman Bulldogs receiver. Pickens was rated as the No. 24 prospect in the country for the class of 2019. Blaylock was No. 36. Prior to adding them, UGA hadn't signed a wide receiver rated among the top-100 recruits since 2009. On the other side of the ball, there are seemingly more opportunities for freshmen. Walker, Smith and Dean might eventually emerge as starters. Yet if that happens, they're unlikely to rank among the Bulldogs' statistical leaders. Only one true freshman in the SEC has exceeded 80 total tackles in a season over the last five years (Arkansas' Dre Greenlaw with 95 in 2015). Eight freshmen have collected at least 60 tackles over that span. As for rushing the passer, three of the SEC's top sack totals came from freshmen in 2014. However, only 10 freshmen since then have collected at least three sacks in a season. No freshman managed that feat in 2018. Of course, Walker, Smith and Dean's stats could be bolstered by UGA's offseason emphasis on Havoc Rate. However, their productivity could also be diminished by the crowded nature of their position groups. The SEC has seemingly been a little easier for first-year defensive backs to navigate. Five freshmen ranked among the league's top 29 in passes broken up last season. That could be good news for Stevenson and Cine, but that also appears to be one of UGA's most competitive battles for playing time with Richard LeCounte and J.R. Reed returning as starters at safety, Eric Stokes back at cornerback and possibly Tyson Campbell a partial starter last season potentially manning the other corner spot. Ultimately, projecting freshman performances isn't easy. While it's true that SEC newcomers occasionally emerge as some of the conference's top players, more often than not they rank below more-experienced players in the stat column. In other words, the safest bet is to assume these freshmen and the rest of the 2019 class are more likely to be a supplement to the Bulldogs' championship pursuit rather than be the catalyst for it. The post Own the East: Fans have high hopes for UGA's latest collection of elite recruits appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia football Scrimmage Two gives players to get dialed in and make yet another case for playing time at Sanford Stadium, some needing to impress more than others. Coach Kirby Smart said the first scrimmage was 'lethargic' and will be looking for improvement from the first-team offense and first-team defense. For that matter, the order of a few rotations may have shifted since the first scrimmage, particularly in the running back and receiver rotations on offense. The No. 3-ranked Bulldogs are just two weeks away from opening the season with a 7:30 p.m. game in Nashville against Vanderbilt. Smart was disappointed with the pass game, in particular, not surprising since QB Jake Fromm lost his top five pass catchers from a season ago. For all the 7-on-7 the team did the summer and throwing and catching after practice, getting a pass game into sync in 11-on-11 full scrimmage action is a different matter. No doubt, that's why more than one of the five players identified as needing a good scrimmage is part of the receiving corps. 5 players who need a good Scrimmage Two for Georgia 1. WR Matt Landers The redshirt sophomore appears to be running with the ones, ahead of Miami transfer Lawrence Cager. But if there's one thing we've seen from Smart and his coaching staff in the past, it's how quickly rotations can change in the receiving corps and secondary, where multiple players are used in each game. As fluid as the depth chart is, there's still a matter of pride earning the start. Landers has the talent to start, but he needs to continue to show the consistency in the second scrimmage. 2. WR Demetris Robertson Robertson had a strong sprig and looks to be in sync with Fromm as any of the receivers, but he's being pushed by redshirt freshman Kearis Jackson and true freshman Dominick Blaylock. Robertson didn't catch a single pass last season, juggling a ball thrown behind him out of bounds in one game. An illness kept Robertson out of the G-Day Game, so Bulldogs fans are ready to see the former 5-star prospect and FWAA Freshman All-American live up to the hype. 3. DL Malik Herring Is this talented junior defensive lineman ready to live up to his potential? A former Top 100 national prospect, Herring appears to have the athleticism to develop into a standout player, but for whatever reason, it hasn't happened to this point. For the Georgia defensive line to be at its best, Herring will need to practice and play with the sort of maturity the head coach is looking for in what may be the most pivotal position group on the team. 4. RB Zamir White White looked so good in Scrimmage One that the head coach turned the page on his comeback and started talking about the areas he needed to improve. White hasn't played in a real football game in more than a year and a half, and Smart indicated his pass blocking and ball protection would be priorities. It's possible the second scrimmage could also represent a psychological hurdle, of sorts, as it was in the second scrimmage of last fall the White tore his ALC in a non-contact incident while on special teams. 5. TE Eli Wolf The Tennessee transfer was less than 100 percent for Scrimmage One, so Saturday's opportunity to shine will be a big one for Wolf. Wolf had a strong offseason in the weight room and ranks as the fastest tight end in the group, and OC James Coley has praised him for his hands and route running Tennessee might have needed Wolf to play at 250 pounds because of the issues on its offensive line. But the former Ohio high school receiving record breaker fits perfectly into the slot left open by Isaac Nauta's early departure playing in the 235-pound range. Wolf is faster than Nauta, but can he show the same sort of consistency catching the football and carrying out blocking assignments? Scrimmage Two will hold some answers. 6. QB Jake Fromm Yes, even Jake Fromm needs to have a good day for the Bulldogs working in Coley's refined Georgia offense. Fromm's Saturday afternoon was so rough last week that Kirby Smart spoke for more than 16 minutes and said more than 2800 words without saying Fromm's name one time. Teammate Charlie Woerner blamed the heat, but it's a good bet Fromm blamed himself and watching film until his eyes fell out of his head. Fromm has been razor sharp in practice all week and will be determined to show out against the Bulldogs' deep and talented secondary. DawgNation Georgia football fall camp Mark Webb's 'rough' start has proven beneficial Way-too-early Georgia road game rankings Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof' D'Andre Swift returns, Brian Herrien first through drill work Skyrocketing Georgia ticket prices spiked by Notre Dame Zamir White hitting holes kicking and trucking' Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with receivers The post 6 Georgia football players who need strong Scrimmage Two performance appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Georgia football is the No. 1 topic every day on DawgNation Daily the daily podcast for Georgia Bulldogs fans. Catch up on everything happening with UGA athletics with host Brandon Adams and the DawgNation experts as they break down the latest Georgia football recruiting news and discuss coach Kirby Smart's quest to return the Bulldogs to the top of the SEC. On episode No. 1,009 (Aug. 116, 2019) of the podcast, Georgia fans can hear a discussion about how UGA's key leaders will respond after being called out by Bulldogs coach Kirby Smart after a disappointing performance in the first summer scrimmage last Saturday. Georgia football podcast: UGA's starters have chance to correct lethargic' effort in first scrimmage Beginning of the show: Georgia coach Kirby Smart wasn't pleased with some of the effort he saw in the first scrimmage of summer practices last Saturday. I'll explain on today's show why some of the offenders including UGA's offensive line have a chance at retribution this Saturday. I'll also share some audio of Smart discussing some of the most buzzed-about freshmen on the Bulldogs roster. 10-minute mark: I discuss the confidence UGA players and Smart seem to have regarding the Bulldogs' secondary. 15-minute mark: DawgNation's recruiting insider Jeff Sentell joins the show. Some of the topics covered include An update on 4-star linebacker B.J. Ojulari who's set to announce his college decision Friday The latest on 4-star offensive lineman Sedrick Van Pran Reaction to some online chatter regarding 5-star cornerback Elias Ricks The latest on UGA's running back recruiting efforts including a discussion about 5-star prospect Zachary Evans And a defense of my seeming fixation on 2020 tight end targets 35-minute mark: I take a look at other SEC headlines including Florida losing another member of its 2019 class, a potentially serious injury to a key LSU offensive lineman, the slow process the NCAA is following regarding Tennessee transfer Aubrey Solomon and an early preview of Florida-Miami which is on tap for next Saturday. End of show: I share the Gator Hater Updater. The post Georgia football podcast: UGA's starters have chance to correct lethargic' effort in first scrimmage appeared first on DawgNation.
  • When Mark Webb got to Georgia, he arrived with the intentions to play wide receiver. The 4-star prospect from Warminster, Pa., arrived as one of four wide receiver signees in the 2017 signing class. But Webb did not last long at wide receiver. Just a few weeks into his freshman season, Webb was moved to the defensive side of the ball. 'It's not necessarily permanent,' Georgia head coach Kirby Smart said at the time. 'But he's done a really good job. I really think he's got a bright future there. We'll sit down and revisit it when the time comes to see what he really wants to do.' Webb ended up sticking as a defensive back. He spent most of his time on special teams as a freshman before working his way onto to the field in certain situations at the end of last season. When speaking with the media this week, Webb was very honest with his assessment of his early days at Georgia and how he's grown since the 2017 season. 'It was rough from the start,' Webb said. 'But it's getting smoother as time went on as you understand the journey that I'm on and you see what Coach Smart had planned for me. It was rough, but it's going the right place.' This fall, Webb is expected to be a regular contributor in the Georgia secondary. When the Bulldogs open their season on Aug. 31, there's a very good chance Webb is lining up with Richard LeCounte, J.R. Reed and the rest of Georgia's starting defensive backs. And he'll likely be doing so at Georgia's STAR position. The STAR position is tough to define. It's somewhat of a cross between safety and cornerback. As more and more college football teams play with more three and four wide receiver sets, teams need more defensive backs on the field to cover those pass catchers. But going with simply more cornerbacks might make it easier for an opposing team to run the ball. That's why a player in the STAR position needs to be a better tackler than your average corner. But they will also likely need to be better in man coverage than your typical safety. Think of the STAR position as a Swiss Army Knife. It's hard to label it as one thing because it can perform a variety of functions. That's the role Webb will be playing for the Georgia defense this year. 'You have to be physical because at STAR you'll be going against tight ends sometimes, you've got to be able to get off blocks on the perimeter, then then you might be going against a slot receiver like D-Rob that's very fast and you have to be able to cover,' Reed said. And Webb fits that mold perfectly. His time at wide receiver prepared him for some of the coverage aspects of the position. But one thing both Webb and Reed agree on is that Webb's physical nature helps him stand out at the STAR position. 'You have to have a star, someone that can be physical, play the run and cover, and that's very rare to find,' Reed said. 'I think Mark Webb has that talent,' Webb first made a name for himself last season in the Auburn game, when he racked up a career-high 6 tackles. He did so playing the MONEY position, which is similar to the STAR position in terms of responsibilities. The MONEY position tends to play closer to the line of scrimmage and is employed when Georgia uses six defensive backs. The junior defensive back estimated that STAR position is on the field about 70 percent of the time. And while he might not be a traditional starter, that would only be determined by the offensive personnel on the field. There's a very good chance that Webb ends up playing a lot more this season on the defensive side of the ball than some of his fellow 2017 wide receivers. Matt Landers and Trey Blount are both fighting for playing time this season. It would be a pretty big surprise if either ended up starting against Vanderbilt. That isn't going to be the case for Webb. And it looks like Smart's early prediction about Webb's future as a defensive back might end up paying off during the 2019 season. Mark Webb discusses playing the STAR position More Georgia football stories from around DawgNation What we learned about Georgia football this past week Way-too-early Georgia football road game rankings in 2019 Georgia captain: James Cook hard to touch,' Zamir White comparable to Nick Chubb Own the East: Combination of returning talent, touted newcomers should improve UGA Havoc Rate' Georgia football Practice 12 report: D'Andre Swift returns, but not first through drills Georgia places 10 players on Preseason All-SEC Coaches' teams Georgia AD Greg McGarity reveals expenses not included in USA Today fiscal report Homegrown: Family roots now run 44 years deep for Warren McClendon Jr. with UGA The post How Mark Webb's rough' start helped prepare him to be a key piece of the Georgia defense appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm hasn't thrown the first pass of his junior season, but already, there's speculation on whether the third-year starter will be back for a senior campaign. Fromm's draft stock and the likelihood of several UGA underclass offensive lineman going pro has everything to do with the valid discussion. CBS sports moved a story on Friday discussing '12 QBs to keep your eyes on in 2019' The so-called 'Cream of the Crop,' per the article, are quarterbacks Tua Tagovailoa from Alabama and Oregon's Justin Herbert. RELATED: 5 Georgia players projected in first two rounds 2020 draft Fromm checks in under the category of 'Eyeing the first-round conversation' along with Stanford QB K.J. Costello. According to CBSsports.com author Ryan Wilson: 'Fromm doesn't have the athleticism or arm strength of Tagovailoa or Herbert, and he isn't a threat to run. He's a three-step-and-out thrower, accurate and timely on short routes, and shows good touch on intermediate routes. But it's also important to remember that is just 20 years old and entering Year 3 as the Bulldogs' starter he's going to continue to improve. By how much is the QB calculus that NFL teams will need to do. Fromm improved his completion percentage from 62 to 67 percent and his TD/INT from 24/7 to 30/6. He needs to be better in the face of pressure (of course, this applies to just about every quarterback on the planet) and consistently make better decisions, but Fromm has the tools to be a first-round pick.' ESPN analyst and former Alabama quarterback Jake Fromm recently predicted on SEC Network's 'Thinking Out Loud' program that the Georgia quarterback will return for his senior season and win the 2020 College Football Playoff Championship Game. 'I really like what Georgia brings back this year, (and) I think next year is their year,' McElroy said. 'So if I were to tell you the year they were going to win the national championship, I'd say 2020. 'Fromm will be a senior, they will still have one of the best offensive lines in college football and I feel like that defensive playmaker along the front four will maybe have grown into himself at that point.' DawgNation Georgia football fall camp Way-too-early Georgia road game rankings Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof' D'Andre Swift returns, Brian Herrien first through drill work Skyrocketing Georgia ticket prices spiked by Notre Dame Zamir White hitting holes kicking and trucking' Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with receivers The post CBS NFL draft watch: Georgia QB Jake Fromm in first-round conversation' appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia's annual with grudge match with border state rival Tennessee just got a bit more intimidating for Bulldogs fans planning to make the trip to Rocky Top. The Vols announced they will be selling alcohol in common areas at already rowdy Neyland Stadium this season. Tennessee joins Vanderbilt, Missouri, Texas A&M, LSU and Arkansas in its decision to sell alcohol in common seating areas. The SEC presidents voted at the league's spring meetings in Destin, Fla., to give schools autonomy where alcohol policy is concerned, provided they stay within conference-wide parameters. ESPN labeled Tennessee as a potential 'trap game' for Georgia. 'The Bulldogs might be feeling pretty good about themselves heading into an Oct. 5 trip to Tennessee,' ESPN's Alex Scarborough wrote. 'Assuming they handle their business against Vanderbilt, Murray State and Arkansas State, and assuming they win a tough nonconference game against Notre Dame, they'll likely be ranked in the top three. But coming out of that stretch and the bye week that follows could have Kirby Smart's squad feeling too good about themselves. 'Though it's going to be easy to overlook Tennessee, which Georgia beat 38-12 last season, don't discount the motivation that loss will provide Jeremy Pruitt's upstart Vols, who return their starting quarterbackJarrett Guarantano.' The guess here, though is that Tennessee will not be the first or second or maybe not even third most difficult road environment for Georgia this season. Way-too-early ranking of Georgia's toughest road games 1. At Auburn, Nov. 16 It's a hot-seat season for Coach Gus Malzahn, the sort that has boom or bust written all over it. That said, the Tigers will still get up for the Bulldogs regardless of their record or circumstance, as evidenced last season. Auburn didn't trail against Georgia last season until the final 3 minutes of the second quarter. Kirby Smart is the first to admit Malzahn's offensive creativity presents a unique challenge, and that it's about surviving the first quarter and getting dialed in on the Tigers' plan. 'Auburn's a hard team to play, I've got a lot of experience playing that offense,' says Smart, who was the defensive coordinator at Alabama prior to his role leading UGA. 'They've got a script, they sub, they change, they go fast. They do a great job using their skill set. Usually, you can make some adjustments, figure things out.' Add into the equation that Auburn has a bye the week before it plays Georgia and the Bulldogs will be coming off a home game against what's expected to be a strong Missouri team and the plot thickens. 2. At Florida (Jacksonville), Nov. 2 Georgia has won the past two meetings, but that doesn't change the game's location or travel itinerary. Florida takes a 72-mile bus ride, the Bulldogs load up equipment trucks and take to the air to reach a different climate zone 332 miles away. The stadium pageantry includes a 50-50 ticket split in Jacksonville's NFL coliseum, but the Gators' players say they can feel the home field advantage. 'It's basically a home game for us,' Florida defensive lineman Jabari Zuniga said at SEC Media Days last month. 'That's what Coach (Dan) Mullen says, It's our home game, it's our field. we're the Florida Gators, and we run this state so we've got to show everybody.' ' QB Feliepe Franks agreed: 'We're just right down the road. It feels just like a home game running out there with all the Florida fans, so it's an awesome feeling.' Kirby Smart has made it clear it's not an awesome feeling for him to be missing out on what would be the biggest home SEC recruiting weekend of the season every other year. 'Our version of the LSU-Alabama game is held in Jacksonville and we don't have prospects, so it's not conducive to recruiting, absolutely it's not,' Smart has said. ' We're trying to figure out how to get better, and the best way to get better is to have opportunities to present in front of those kids.' Tim Tebow and Steve Spurrier are on record as wanting the game to stay in Jacksonville. 'When I was coaching at Florida, I said it's to our advantage to get on the bus, and they've got to get on the airplane,' Spurrier said during an exclusive Q&A with DawgNation last summer. 'We're in the state of Florida, (and) the stadium used to be called the Gator Bowl.' Both Florida and Georgia have true home games before the annual showdown this season. The bye before the Florida game is something UGA has historically requested to the league office in annual scheduling talks. At Vanderbilt, Aug. 31 Yes, Vanderbilt, and keep in mind the Commodores have won three straight over the Vols before suggesting Tennessee will be a tougher game. That said, the Vols do figure to beat Vandy this season and be a better team than the Commodores. The key here is that Georgia will be a much, much better team in October than September. The reason the season-opening game at Vandy presents challenges is because Georgia is breaking in a new receiving corps. There are questions as to how in sync QB Jake Fromm can be, and it's a safe bet Commodores coach Derek Mason will press that issue by loading the box. Conversely, Vandy is a little bit of a wild card with different quarterback options and three skill position players that pose a threat if the Commodores can offer and sort of offensive line play. At Tennessee, Oct 5 The bye before the start of the succession of SEC games was also requested by Georgia, and obviously the Vols requested the same thing because both teams have byes. There's no doubt that new Tennessee OC Jim Chaney can provide the sort of insight into the Bulldogs' personnel that would provide the Vols' an advantage. The same was true last season when former UGA linebackers coach Kevin Sherrer opened the book on the Bulldogs, along with what UT head coach Jeremy Pruitt already knew from his time recruiting players who were still on the roster. It probably isn't a coincidence that the only game Jake Fromm has not thrown a TD pass in throughout his career was last year's victory over Tennessee. The Vols will be coming off a bye week, but the week before, they will have traveled to The Swamp for a game that annually sets the tone. Win or lose, Tennessee figures to be ranked, and that will get Georgia's attention as much as film from a game with the Vols last season that was much more contested than the 38-12 final score suggests. At Georgia Tech, Nov. 30 The Yellow Jackets are breaking in a new football coach in Geoff Collins and moving away from option football. That's good news and bad news for Georgia. The good news is UGA doesn't have to designate a part of each practice toward working against the unique intricacies of depending the option The bad news is that should the Yellow Jackets get competitive running a more conventional offense, it creates more competition for in-state skill position players. The answer for Georgia is simple: keep dominating and winning by decisive margins. Georgia Tech doesn't figure to pose much of a challenge this season in a rivalry game that has mostly become lost on the national landscape. The Yellow Jackets are transitioning on offense with players who were recruited to play an offensive-style attack, and it figures to take Collins a season or two to find players that fit his scheme. DawgNation Georgia football fall camp Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof' D'Andre Swift returns, Brian Herrien first through drill work Skyrocketing Georgia ticket prices spiked by Notre Dame Zamir White hitting holes kicking and trucking' Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with receivers The post Georgia football road game rankings in 2019 appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS The Georgia football running back stable is stacked with talent, and no one knows that better than veteran first-team All-SEC safety J.R. Reed. Projected started D'Andre Swift has been talked about among Heisman Trophy contenders provided he can stay healthy, and redshirt freshman Zamir White is making headlines with his comeback from last year's torn ACL. But sophomore James Cook looks to be someone to keep an eye on, too, Reed suggested following Thursday's practice. 'Cook is just a lot, he's just so fast, man, he's so fast, he's hard to touch,' Reed said. 'He has really good balance, it's hard to get him out of bounds, he'll cut those corners and there will be an inch on the sideline, and he'll tightrope it all the way down it to the end zone. 'You have to be really, really tight on your angles with Cook, because he'll either cut it back or he'll turn it up on you, so you have to be smart and track that hip.' RELATED: Kirby Smart shares plans for electric' James Cook White, the No. 1-ranked tailback in the 2018 class, has shown he's ready to run with authority in fall camp, and Reed has felt that as much as seen it. 'I've been able to fill the hole on Zamir a lot of times, really big psychical running back ,I feel sorry for the guys that have to go against him,' Reed said. 'He reminds me of (Nick) Chubb, especially running the ball, how physical he is and downhill, and that's the biggest thing that comes to my mind.' Reed said White's offseason workouts were so impressive, he felt confident he would make a healthy return even before his first full contact in fall drills. 'Once you see a guy work out like that in the summer and see that he's ready to go, that's when you know he's back,' Reed said. 'Once he's comfortable doing the drills, and once you see he's comfortable cutting off that foot, that's when you know he's back.' DawgNation Georgia football fall camp J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof' D'Andre Swift returns, Brian Herrien first through drill work Skyrocketing Georgia ticket prices spiked by Notre Dame Zamir White hitting holes kicking and trucking' Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with receivers Big winners from Georgia's first 10 practices Plugged-in sources dish on George Pickens 5 takeaways from Scrimmage One The post Georgia captain: James Cook hard to touch,' Zamir White comparable to Nick Chubb appeared first on DawgNation.