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Jamie Dupree's Washington Insider

    Facing opposition from within Republican ranks, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell presented an amended rules proposal on Tuesday to govern the start of President Donald Trump's impeachment trial, most significantly giving more time for House prosecutors and the President's lawyers to make their opening arguments. The changes came after a lunch meeting of GOP Senators, where Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) and others expressed reservations about the idea of forcing each side to cram 24 hours of opening arguments into just two days. 'She and others raised concerns about the 24 hrs of opening statements in 2 days,' a spokeswoman for Collins told reporters. Along with that change, McConnell backed off a provision which would not allow evidence from the House impeachment investigation to be put in the record without a vote of the Senate. The changes were made as House prosecutors and the President's legal team made their first extended statements of the Trump impeachment trial. 'Why should this trial be any different than any other trial? The short answer is, it shouldn't,' said Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), as he made the case that the Senate rules would not pass muster in a regular courtroom. 'This idea that we should ignore what has taken place over the last three years is outrageous,' said Jay Sekulow, the President's personal attorney, who joined White House Counsel Pat Cipollone in arguing against the impeachment charges. 'It's very difficult to sit there and listen to Mr. Schiff tell the tale that he just told,' Cipollone said, in one of the first direct jabs of the impeachment trial. “A partisan impeachment is like stealing an election,” Cipollone added. While there were GOP differences on the rules package offered by Republican leaders, GOP Senators stuck together on the first substantive vote of the impeachment trial, defeating an effort by Democrats to subpoena certain materials from the White House. The first vote was 53-47 to block an amendment offered by the Democratic Leader, Sen. Schumer.  It was straight along party lines. A second vote along party lines blocked a call by Democrats to subpoena documents from the State Department. Opening arguments are expected to begin on Wednesday.
  • A GOP rules plan for the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump unveiled by Senate Republicans on Monday could pave the way for the trial to be finished in as little as two weeks, as the plan envisions squeezing 48 hours of opening arguments into just four days, with the option of voting on the impeachment articles without any additional witnesses or evidence. 'Just because the House proceedings were a circus that doesn’t mean the Senate’s trial needs to be,' said Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), who fully endorsed the proposal from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. While GOP Senators said the plan would be modeled on a bipartisan rules deal at the start of the Clinton impeachment trial, there were two notable differences from 21 years ago, governing opening arguments, and the submission of evidence. While each side would get 24 hours to make their opening arguments, this GOP plan would force that time to be used in just two days - raising the specter of an impeachment trial which could stretch well into the night because of those time constraints. Another change would require an affirmative vote by the Senate to simply put the investigatory materials from the House into the trial record, something which was done automatically in the Clinton impeachment trial. Also, even if extra witnesses were approved by Senators, it would not guarantee their testimony on the Senate floor, as there would have to be a vote after the depositions on whether the witness would testify publicly. With a Tuesday debate set on the rules, Republicans also made clear they would not support any move to add witnesses until after opening arguments have been completed. 'If attempts are made to vote on witnesses prior to opening arguments, I would oppose those efforts,' said Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT). Meanwhile, Democrats roundly denounced the GOP rules details. 'The proposal that Majority Leader McConnell just released looks more like a cover up than a fair trial,' said Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE). 'Mitch McConnell doesn't want a fair trial, he wants a fast trial,' said Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI). 'It's all about the cover up,' said Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT). 'These are not the Clinton rules.' 'There’s nothing in this resolution that requires hearing witnesses or admitting evidence — which is unlike any trial I’ve ever seen,' said Sen. Tina Smith (D-MN). 'Under this resolution, Senator McConnell is saying he doesn’t want to hear any of the existing evidence, and he doesn’t want to hear any new evidence,' said Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer, who promised to offer amendments to the plan on Tuesday afternoon. Debate and votes on the rules resolution will start on Tuesday afternoon - and could turn into an extended battle on the floor of the U.S. Senate.
  • In a 171 page submission made to the U.S. Senate on Monday, President Donald Trump's legal team said the impeachment charges submitted by the House do not identify any violations of criminal law and should immediately by dismissed by Senators. 'The articles should be rejected and the President should immediately be acquitted,' the legal brief states, arguing the charge of 'abuse of power' does not state an impeachable offense - even though that charge was drawn up by the House in 1974 against President Richard Nixon. 'House Democrats’ novel conception of “abuse of power” as a supposedly impeachable offense is constitutionally defective,' the Trump brief states. 'It supplants the Framers’ standard of “high Crimes and Misdemeanors” with a made-up theory that the President can be impeached and removed from office under an amorphous and undefined standard of 'abuse of power.'' On the question of whether President Trump held back military aid for Ukraine while pressing the Ukraine government to announce investigations related to Joe Biden and his son, the White House legal team says there is no evidence to support those claims. 'The most important piece of evidence demonstrating the President’s innocence is the transcript of the President’s July 25 telephone call with President Zelenskyy,' the trial brief states, referring to the call which President Trump has repeatedly said was 'perfect.' 'President Trump did not even mention the security assistance on the call, and he certainly did not make any connection between the assistance and any investigation,' the White House legal team states, without mentioning that a hold was put on the aid to Ukraine 90 minutes after that phone call concluded on July 25, 2019. From the White House on Monday, the President tweeted out his familiar opposition to the impeachment trial, continuing to characterize the House impeachment process as unfair. Minutes after the White House filed its trial brief, Democrats in the House responded to his initial 'answer' to the Senate trial summons. 'The House denies each and every allegation and defense in the Preamble to the Answer,' the nine page response began. 'He used Presidential powers to pressure a vulnerable foreign partner to interfere in our elections for his own benefit,' referring to the President's interactions with the leader of Ukraine.  'President Trump maintains that the Senate cannot remove him even if the House proves every claim in the Articles of impeachment,” the House reply added. “That is a chilling assertion. It is also dead wrong,' the House concluded.
  • In the first legal submissions of President Donald Trump's impeachment trial, Democrats on Saturday said the President had violated his oath and should be removed from office, while the White House denounced the impeachment charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress as 'constitutionally invalid.' In their 111 page legal brief, Democrats said the President had abused his power by trying to pressure the government of Ukraine into announcing investigations against Joe Biden, all in an effort to help Mr. Trump's 2020 re-election bid. Democrats said the very public effort by President Trump to block top White House officials from testifying before Congress - as they defied subpoenas for the impeachment investigation - was a violation of the Constitution. 'In exercising its responsibility to investigate and consider the impeachment of a President of the United States, the House is constitutionally entitled to the relevant information from the Executive Branch concerning the President's misconduct,' Democrats wrote. 'The Framers, the courts, and past Presidents have recognized that honoring Congress’s right to information in an impeachment investigation is a critical safeguard in our system of divided powers,' that trial brief added. In their initial answer to the Senate summons for this impeachment trial, the White House delivered a seven page legal rebuke to Democrats. 'The Articles of Impeachment are constitutionally invalid on their face. They fail to allege any crime of violation of law whatsoever,' wrote White House Counsel Pat Cipollone and the President's personal lawyer Jay Sekulow. 'In the end, this entire process is nothing more than a dangerous attack on the American people themselves and their fundamental right to vote,' the President's legal team concluded. 'The notion that President Trump obstructed Congress is absurd,' said sources close to the President's legal team. The White House has until 12 noon on Monday to file a trial brief to the Senate; Democrats would have until 12 noon on Tuesday to file a rebuttal. The Senate will reconvene as a court of impeachment on Tuesday afternoon. Senators must still approve rules to govern the first phase of the trial. Senate Republicans have said they would base that rules plan on one approved by the Senate for the start of the Clinton impeachment trial in 1999. That rules resolution gave each side 24 hours to make their opening arguments - which would likely be split up over three or more days on the Senate floor. Like 1999, it's possible the Senate may also take an early vote to dismiss the case entirely, an outcome preferred by President Trump.
  • With opening arguments in the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump expected to begin in coming days, the White House on Friday unveiled a team of legal experts including former Whitewater prosecutor Ken Starr, and Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz to defend the President on Capitol Hill. 'President Trump has done nothing wrong and is confident that this team will defend him, the voters, and our democracy from this baseless, illegitimate impeachment,' White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a written statement. 'The President looks forward to the end of this partisan and unconstitutional impeachment,' Grisham added. The Trump legal team members will join White House Counsel Pat Cipollone and the President's personal lawyer Jay Sekulow in defending Mr. Trump. Here is the list provided by the White House: + Ken Starr, Former Independent Counsel, Whitewater investigation + Alan Dershowitz, Professor of Law, Emeritus, Harvard Law School + Pam Bondi, Former Attorney General of Florida + Jane Serene Raskin, Private Counsel to President Donald J. Trump + Eric D. Herschmann, Kasowitz, Benson, Torres LLP + Robert Ray, Former Independent Counsel. While Dershowitz is a famous legal mind, Starr is the more political figure, given that his Whitewater investigation launched the impeachment of President Bill Clinton in 1999. And his appearance immediately drew the evil eye from allies of the former President. Democrats mocked the choices. 'If President Trump is looking to turn the impeachment trial into a reality TV show, he chose the right team with Alan Dershowitz, Ken Starr, and Robert Ray,' said Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA). But this is the U.S. Senate, not the People's Court.  'Well, that's their choice,' Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) said of Starr during a Friday interview on MSNBC. 'But it's a weird choice.' The choice of Starr also drew a profane response from Monica Lewinsky, who was the focus of Starr's investigation. The Senate impeachment trial resumes on Tuesday with votes expected on the rules to govern the initial phase of the Trump impeachment trial.
  • President Donald Trump said Thursday that he did not know Lev Parnas, an indicted business associate of Rudy Giuliani who claims the President knew all about Giuliani's efforts to oust the U.S. Ambassador in Ukraine, as well as behind the scenes work to get Ukraine to announce investigations related to Joe Biden, in order to help Mr. Trump's 2020 re-election bid. 'I don't know him. I don't know Parnas,' the President said a number of times to reporters at the White House. 'I don't know him at all. Don't know what he's about,' Mr. Trump added. But in interviews with MSNBC, CNN, and the New York Times, Parnas has said the President is not telling the truth about his efforts to put pressure on the leader of Ukraine. Documents and electronic messages provided by Parnas to the House Intelligence Committee in recent days included a letter that Rudy Giuliani wrote in May 2019, asking for a meeting with the newly-elected Ukraine President, in which Giuliani said he was 'private counsel to President Donald J. Trump.' 'I don't know anything about the letter,' President Trump said, praising Giuliani's time as mayor but not addressing what he did for Trump in Ukraine with Parnas and others. Also denying any knowledge of Parnas's claims was Vice President Mike Pence. 'I don’t know the guy,' Pence told reporters during a visit to Florida on Thursday, as the Vice President said the claim by Parnas that Pence knew about pressure being put on the Ukraine leader was 'completely false.' Democrats used those denials to question why Pence's office has refused to declassify further impeachment answers from a State Department official detailed to his office. Some Democrats have raised the possibility of asking to hear testimony from Parnas in the Trump impeachment trial, though any request for witness testimony must get a majority of Senators. As of now, most Republicans remain hotly opposed to any new witnesses, arguing the Senate should not have to find evidence which the House did not uncover. 'That's not our job,' said Sen. David Perdue (R-GA). 'Our job is to look at what they brought us and decide if that rises to the level of impeachment.' Perdue was part of the ceremonial first day of the Senate impeachment trial - just the third time a President has faced such a challenge in U.S. history. Opening arguments will take place next Tuesday.
  • Just before the official start of the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, the Government Accountability Office said Thursday that the White House had broken federal law by withholding over $200 million in military aid for Ukraine, as Democrats said the new findings should be aired before the Senate in coming days. 'Faithful executive of the law does not permit the President to substitute his own policy priorities for those that Congress has enacted into law,' wrote Thomas Armstrong, the General Counsel of the GAO. Democrats immediately latched on to the government watchdog opinion to reinforce their impeachment arguments. 'This is an important ruling that deserves a thorough hearing in the impeachment trial,' said Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) on the floor of the Senate. 'GAO confirmed the President broke the law,' said Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer. 'When President Trump froze congressionally approved military aid to Ukraine, he did so in violation of the law and the Constitution,' said Sen. Pat Leahy (D-VT). 'The GAO has confirmed what we’ve always known: President Trump abused his power,' said Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME). 'Another fact for the Senate to consider.' 'The hold Trump ordered was illegal,' said Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA). The law in question is known as the Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974,' which was passed after President Nixon had refused to release money approved by Congress.
  • Hours after Speaker Nancy Pelosi named seven Democratic lawmakers to act as the prosecutors for the House impeachment case against President Donald Trump, the House on Wednesday evening gave the Senate official notification that it was ready to proceed with a trial of the President on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. 'A few minutes ago, the Senate was notified that the House of Representatives is finally ready to proceed with their articles of impeachment,' said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. The historic trial - only the third of a President in U.S. history - will officially begin on Thursday with the arrival of Chief Justice John Roberts and the swearing-in of Senators. Opening arguments in the case are expected to begin on Tuesday. The official moves came four weeks after the House had voted to impeach the President on two charges, as Democrats delayed in hopes of forcing Senate Republicans to call witnesses who refused to testify in House impeachment hearings. While that gambit did not work, new evidence did surface over that time period, including documents and messages gathered by Lev Parnas, an indicted associate of the President's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Parnas worked with Giuliani in Ukraine, helping in his effort to force out then-U.S. Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch. The new materials, which included texts and other electronic messages involving Parnas, Giuliani, and others, also held notes which mentioned getting Ukraine to announce 'that the Biden case will be investigated.' It was the President's withholding of military aid - combined with an effort to ask for the Ukraine government to announce investigations of the Bidens and the 2016 elections - which prompted Democrats to convene impeachment hearings. Republicans greeted the official arrival of the impeachment charges with scorn and ridicule. 'Democrats have politicized impeachment and denied President Trump his fundamental right to due process,' said Sen. David Perdue (R-GA). 'It’s clear Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives failed to make their case.' 'By delaying the process, Speaker Pelosi confirmed that this impeachment is a partisan political exercise,' said Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV).
  • Four weeks after the House approved two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi named a team of seven Democrats to lead the prosecution's case in a Senate impeachment trial, led by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. “The emphasis is on litigators.  The emphasis is on comfort level in the courtroom,” Pelosi told reporters at the U.S. Capitol.  “The emphasis is making the strongest possible case to defend and protect the Constitution,” Pelosi added. Here is the list of the impeachment managers: + Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA). Schiff led the impeachment hearings and is Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. Speaker Pelosi said Schiff will serve as the lead manager. + Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY). Nadler is the head of the House Judiciary Committee. + Rep. Val Demings (D-FL). A former police chief in Orlando, Florida, Demings serves on both the Intelligence and Judiciary Committees. + Rep. Jason Crow (D-CO). A lawyer and Army Ranger who served in both Afghanistan and Iraq, Crow won a GOP seat in the Denver suburbs in 2018. He was not involved in any of the impeachment hearings, and is the only impeachment manager who is not from a safe-Democratic seat. + Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY). The head of the House Democratic Caucus, Jeffries is a member of the House Judiciary Committee. + Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA). A veteran Democrat who was a staffer during the Nixon impeachment investigation, and also served during the Clinton impeachment. + Rep. Sylvia Garcia (D-TX). Garcia is a freshman Democrat from the Houston area, and former judge. She is a member of the Judiciary Committee. In a statement, the White House Press Secretary belittled the Speaker's announcement. The ceremonial start to the trial will come on Thursday, as Chief Justice John Roberts will swear in Senators. Opening arguments are expected to begin next Tuesday.
  • As the Congress inched closer to the start of a Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, new evidence emerged on Tuesday night related to actions in Ukraine by the President's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, including electronic messages which seemingly involved people tracking the movements of the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine who was the target of allies of the President. The materials released by the House Intelligence Committee came from Lev Parnas, a business associated of Giuliani who was arrested on October 9, 2019, just before he was to board a flight to Austria. Parnas was later charged with illegally funneling foreign money into U.S. election campaigns. Along with text messages, the Parnas information included handwritten items on notepads from the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Vienna, which seemingly were related to the genesis of the Ukraine investigation involving President Trump's May 25 phone call with the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky. 'Get Zalensky to announce that the Biden case will be investigated,' one note says. Also included in the release was a letter from Giuliani to Zelensky. In the letter, Giuliani says he is the 'private counsel' for President Trump, and asks for a half-hour to meet with the Ukraine leader, but does not reveal the subject matter. That letter was dated 15 days before President Trump's 'perfect' call with the leader of Ukraine, where Mr. Trump asked Zelensky to look into 'the Bidens.' The materials made public on Tuesday also included electronic messages involving Robert Hyde, a GOP candidate for Congress in Connecticut, who seemed to have been involved in some type of surveillance and tracking of then-Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch. Yovanovitch was the target of what she later described as a 'smear campaign' started by Giuliani, which ultimately led to her ouster as Ambassador. In the newly-released messages from late March of 2019 - just as a media campaign against Yovanovitch was underway - Hyde said he was surprised the President 'hasn't fired this bitch.' Over the next few days, Hyde messages that Yovanovitch is 'next to the embassy,' 'Not in the embassy,' and seemingly gives detailed updates on what the Ambassador has been doing.  'She's talked to three people. Her phone is off. Computer is off,' one message from March 25, 2019 reads. 'They will let me know when she's on the move,' another message reads, not indicating who the 'They' is. With the consent of federal prosecutors in New York, the attorney for Lev Parnas said the information had been shared with the House Intelligence Committee, which then forwarded the materials to the House Judiciary Committee. The notes quickly attracted the attention of Democrats. Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI) said on Twitter, “these notes are legitimately insane and damning and hard to fathom.”

Local News

  • Brock Vandagriffhas made a new decision. It should certainly read like a family-first decision. The 5-star QB de-committed from Oklahoma on the first day of 2020. He found a new home less than three weeks later. The rising senior in the 2021 class is able to still call it home both before and after his new college choice. It is 13.7 miles away from where he currently plays high school football. That will be 13 fewer hours and 900 miles closer than the Oklahoma program he had been previously committed to. The 6-foot-3, 205-pound junior from Prince Avenue Christian (Bogard, Ga.) is going to be a Bulldog. He announced that decision via his social media. Oklahoma was a great fit given his skill set. Now toss in Lincoln Riley and his reputation for building up No. 1 draft choices-slash-Heisman winners at that position. It made a lot of sense. Except when Thanksgiving and Christmas rolled around this past year. Those family ties tugged at his heart. He couldn't sleep and found himself praying it. 'My Dad and I we talked and stuff,' Brock Vandagriff said. 'We are kind of sacrificing the best fit for me just for some other things that are priorities now.' Vandagriff becomes the third member of the 2021 class in Athens and should certainly be seen as the cornerstone recruit for the class. That's a given with quarterbacks. Not just 5-star recruits. The 5-star QB ranks as the nation's No. 1 pro-style passer and the No. 9 overall prospect for that cycle on the 247Sports Composite rankings. He's the first 5-star QB to commit to Georgia since current Ohio State star Justin Fields did so in October of 2017. Why was it Georgia? 'I trust the coaches there and I trust them in the direction they are going and I want to be able to compete for national championships,' Brock Vandagriff said. When he made the decision to back off his commitment to Lincoln Riley at Oklahoma, it was clear that two things would be forthcoming: 1) He was going to make a move to be much closer to home: 2) He wasn't going to take a long time to figure out his next choice. pic.twitter.com/luGcDU7ZGI brock (@BrockVandagriff) January 1, 2020 The highly-competitive Prince Avenue Christian junior has never seemed to be the type that enjoyed the back-and-forth and courting of the recruiting process. When he opened his decision process back up, that just restarted all of those coaches reaching out once again. Vandagriff does plan to enroll early at Georgia in January of 2021. Brock Vandagriff: What he will now bring to UGA Let's tackle the biggest 'what this means' question first. Vandagriff will always be linked with Washington, D.C. area 5-star passer Caleb Williams in the 2021 cycle. Williams was heavy on Georgia over the last year, but LSU, Maryland, Oklahoma and Penn State are also strong contenders there for his eventual decision. The 6-foot-2, 207-pound junior is very much in the debate with Vandagriff for the nation's No. 1 overall QB prospect in 2021. He ranks as the nation's No.1 dual-threat passer and also the nation's No. 14 player at this time. This certainly appears to be an example of Georgia taking the commitment from a prospect who was ready to make his decision and dancing the jig around their facility in being fortunate to do so. He's rated as a pro-style QB, but his Hudl profile page lists a 4.65 time in the 40-yard dash. His 4.44 time in the pro agility drill should certainly be seen as a very good time for a quarterback prospect. Throw in his 37-inch vertical jump and he will certainly be an athlete for the Bulldogs at that position. Vandagriff's father, Greg, is the head football coach at Prince Avenue Christian in Bogart. That's about as close to UGA as any school can get. Especially one with his arm and the numbers he has put up playing Class A private football in Georgia. Toss in the fact that he is the son of a respected high school football coach in the state and it is clear that Vandagriff checks a lot of boxes in the ideal scouting makeup for a field leader. Vandagriff completed 151 of his 211 passes (72 percent) this past season for 2,471 yards in eight games. He tallied up a 31:3 touchdown-to-interception ratio. The junior also added 262 rushing yards and six touchdowns. Check out his junior highlight film below. He throws an easy ball that seems to carry downfield easily. Some of his best throws are made as he escapes the pocket on the run and delivers an accurate and powerful throw deep to receivers in stride. Brock Vandagriff: Getting to know Brock on DawgNation Brock Vandagriff breaks down his 'Junior Day' unofficial visit, plans quick return Vandagriff previews big UGA visit, opens up on his Oklahoma de-commitment Just how competitive is Brock Vandagriff? Check out this early DawgNation story The post BREAKING: 5-star junior QB Brock Vandagriff has a new college decision appeared first on DawgNation.
  • A teenager is arrested with a gun at North Hall High School. From the Hall County Sheriff’s Office… The Hall County Sheriff’s Office is investigating after a firearm was found in a 16-year-old male student’s vehicle at North Hall High School on Friday morning, Jan. 17.    At approximately 9 a.m., a school official noticed an improperly parked vehicle on campus. The School Resource Officer was notified after the official observed a handgun in the vehicle. The SRO responded and also saw the weapon in the car.    Deputies obtained a search warrant for the vehicle and located a rifle, a small quantity of marijuana, drug paraphernalia and a bottle of alcohol inside. The handgun initially spotted in the car turned out to be a BB pistol that looked like an actual firearm.    Sheriff’s Investigators obtained warrants for the arrest of the juvenile suspect on the charges of possession of a weapon at school, disrupting a public school and possession of marijuana. The 16year-old turned himself in to investigators early Friday evening and was transported to a youth detention center.    The case remains under investigation by the Hall County Sheriff’s Office.
  • The Georgia Bulldog basketball team, on the heels of a weekend loss at Mississippi State, will look for their first SEC road win of the season tonight in Lexington Kentucky. From Mike Mobley, UGA Sports Communications… Georgia will face Kentucky for the second time in two weeks on Tuesday. On Jan. 7 in a sold-out Stegeman Coliseum, the Bulldogs built a nine-point lead late in the first half and led for nearly 23 minutes of the game before the No. 14-ranked Wildcats rallied for a 78-69 victory.   Tuesday’s contest at Rupp Arena is the second half of a challenging back-to-back, Saturday-Tuesday road portion of the Bulldogs’ schedule. Georgia lost at Mississippi State on Saturday. Roughly 71 hours later, the Bulldogs will face the Wildcats, who were ranked No. 10 and No. 12 in the AP and coaches polls last week, respectively.    The outings versus MSU and UK are the fourth and fifth in Georgia’s grueling stretch to open SEC play. The Bulldogs will face six straight teams that earned NCAA Tournament bids last spring – Kentucky, Auburn, Tennessee, Mississippi State, Kentucky (again) and Ole Miss.   Georgia is 11-6 overall and 1-3 in SEC play. Last Wednesday, the Bulldogs matched their overall win total from a year ago with an impressive 80-63 victory over Tennessee.   Anthony Edwards, a pre- and mid-season All-American and leading National Freshman of the Year candidate, is the nation’s top-scoring freshman at 19.1 ppg. Edwards is the only freshman ranked among the top-50 scorers in the country at No. 47. Rayshaun Hammonds is the SEC’s fourth-leading rebounder (8.2 rpg) and also ranks No. 14 in scoring (13.8 ppg). 
  • Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost S. Jack Hu has appointed a 15-member committee to begin a national search for candidates for the position of vice provost for graduate education and dean of the Graduate School at the University of Georgia. The committee is chaired by Linda Kirk Fox, dean of the College of Family and Consumer Sciences, and it includes faculty, staff and student representation. The national search follows a review of the Graduate School conducted by Fox and several committee members. “Elevating the leadership of the Graduate School to the vice provost level at the University of Georgia signals the important role graduate and professional education plays in promoting research and innovation across all the disciplines,” Hu said. “I appreciate the dedication of the committee members and look forward to meeting with the finalists for this critical position.” Faculty, staff, students or community members who wish to nominate candidates for consideration are invited to contact Michael Luthi, director of the UGA Search Group, at luthi@uga.edu. In addition to Fox, the search committee members are: Michelle Ballif, professor and head of the department of English in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences Cheri Bliss, director of graduate admissions and student services in the Graduate School Beate Brunow, director of academic partnerships and initiatives in the Division of Student Affairs Amy Ellis, professor of mathematics education in the College of Education Noel Fallows, Distinguished Research Professor of Spanish and associate provost for global engagement Georgia Harrison Hall, associate professor in the College of Environment and Design and chair of the policy and planning committee of the Graduate Council Shelley Hooks, associate professor of pharmaceutical and biomedical sciences in the College of Pharmacy and associate vice president in the Office of Research Lawrence Hornak, professor of electrical and computer engineering in the College of Engineering and associate vice president for integrative team initiatives in the Office of Research Angela Hsiung, doctoral student in the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources Peter Jutras, professor and director of the Hugh Hodgson School of Music Erin Lipp, professor of environmental health science and associate dean for academic affairs in the College of Public Health Thomas Mote, Distinguished Research Professor of geography and associate dean in the Franklin College Mike Pfarrer, professor of management and associate dean for research and graduate programs in the Terry College of Business Franklin West, associate professor of animal and dairy science in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Ron Walcott, a professor of plant pathology in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences who has served as associate dean of the Graduate School since 2017, is currently serving as interim dean of the Graduate School. The former dean of the Graduate School, Suzanne Barbour, was named dean of the Graduate School at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.
  • Grab your hats, scarves, gloves and layer up. It’s going to be another cold day across north Georgia. Severe Weather Team 2 Meteorologist Brian Monahan has been tracking a colder start to your Tuesday morning than it was yesterday. Here’s what to know as you head out the door: Temperatures are in the teens and 20s now. Temperatures will continue to drop in most spots as we head toward sunrise Light wind out there this morning compared to yesterday, but Monahan says only a little wind has a big impact.

Bulldog News

  • Georgia basketball simply couldn't keep up with Kentucky in Rupp Arena on Tuesday night. The No. 15-ranked Wildcats (14-4, 5-1 SEC) took down the Bulldogs (11-7, 1-4) by an 89-79 count. It was UK's 14th straight win in the series, and their second this season. Kentucky guard Ashton Hagans, from Cartersville, Ga., led the Wildcats with 23 points, nine assists and five rebounds. Georgia junior Rayshaun Hammonds scored 16 points and pulled down 8 rebounds, giving Coach Tom Crean the type of road effort that was missing in a loss at Mississippi State on Saturday. UGA freshman Anthony Edwards, meanwhile, scored 16 points on 7-of-13 shooting. But it was a case of too little, too late from Edwards, who had just one rebound and turned the ball over five times. Edwards was heldscoreless in the first half as Kentucky staked out to a 41-35 lead at intermission. The Bulldogs had their moments, using a 9-0 run to claim a 29-28 lead with 5:34 left in the first half. Donnell Gresham Jr. sparked the burst with a 3-pointer and also capped it with a jumper that triggered a John Calipari timeout. Kentucky responded with a 7-0 run of its own the first 78 seconds out of the timeout to reclaim control of the game. Georgia held a surprising 19-17 advantage on the glass in the first half, but the smaller Bulldogs could not sustain that advantage. UK out-rebounded Georgia 21-12 in the second half, even as Edwards awoke from his first half slumber. Edwards finally scored two minutes into the second half after missing his first five shots. Edwards hit his next three shots, too, pulling the Bulldogs to 57-54 with 12:38 left. It was as close as Georgia got the rest of the night. Kentucky came back at the Bulldogs with a 12-2 run, and Georgia couldn't get closer than seven points the rest of the night The Wildcats wonthe first meeting between the teams by a 78-69 count in Athens, coming back from nine points down in front of a sold-out Stegeman Coliseum crowd in both team's SEC opener on Jan. 7. Georgia returns to action at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday at Stegeman Coliseum against Ole Miss. The Bulldogs are 9-1 on their home court this season. The post Georgia basketball falls at Kentucky, too little, too late from Anthony Edwards appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Kirby Smart is typically pretty transparent, but the Georgia fifth-year head coach didn't let on the sort of overhaul or the extremes he was prepared to go to in order to improve the offense. 'We'll look at it,' Smart said on Dec. 18, asked about the Bulldogs' offensive philosophy. 'But we want to score points.' RELATED: Kirby Smart's amazing offseason of change at Georgia A month later, Georgia had landed the highest-rated (PFF) grad-transfer QB on the market, the OC from the NFL's most prolific pass game in 2018 and a quarterbacks coach Smart knew first hand from his Valdosta State days The Bulldogs still have work to do, and the Feb. 5 National Signing Day will certainly be worth tuning into. Georgia went 12-2 last season with a 5-1 mark vs. Top 25 teams and a third-straight SEC East Division title. But Smart, who insists on setting the bar at a championship level each fall, has continued to reach higher and push for more on his coaching staff and within his team. Complacency, Smart said, is the enemy of the team's aspirations and played a role last season. : When you're not hungry, you become average, and some of that, I think, has affected us in the past,' Smart said after the 26-14 Sugar Bowl win over Baylor. 'And we've got to find a way in this program to not let that creep in and keep that same hunger you have as a young player because we've had it happen to several guys that were really hungry, and then they become full.' Nobody in Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall will be getting too comfortable anytime soon. Indeed, incoming freshman QB Carson Beck is probably just now growing comfortable with the competition ahead of him on campus, and UGA has already added a 5-star in the 2021 class. Brock Vandagriff, a 5-star prospect from nearby Bogart who ranks as the No. 1 -ranked Pro Style quarterback in the 2021 class, made his verbal pledge on Tuesday. Mike Griffith and Connor Riley discuss the repercussions of Smart's latest moves and additions on Tuesday's 'On The Beat' show, and what it means for the program. Georgia football On The Beat, 1-21-20 More from DawgNation UGA adds offseason excitement, stars endorse new OC Todd Monken WATCH: 2021 commit Brock Vandagriff shares story with DawgNation Podcast: Brandon Adams shares his take on Brock Vandagriff addition Kirby Smart has turned Georgia offense upside down Social media reacts to addition of 5-star QB Brock Vandagriff Why Buster Faukner a perfect complement to Todd Monken The post WATCH: Georgia football early offseason breakdown, Brock Vanagriff addition, appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Brock Vandagriff is the newest 5-star commitment for the Georgia Bulldogs. The nation's No. 8 overall prospect (247Sports Composite ratings) chose Georgia earlier today. He was once committed to Oklahoma. Bet a lot of folks knew that. Maybe they also knew that he ran for 1,001 yards at a rate of 7.3 yards per carry as a high school sophomore. But what about his kickoffs? Or his big-time leg at punter? How 'bout the fact that he caught 34 passes during his freshman season at Prince Avenue Christian in nearby Bogart? Or that he threw his first high school pass off a jet sweep from the receiver spot? It was, of course, a touchdown. That's just the beginning of the information superhighway when it comes to all things Vandagriff. Check out the featured video above or the embedded version below for a breakdown on all things Vandagriff, including His favorite route to throw? How did Georgia keep the recruiting channels open after he committed to Oklahoma? His description of some real adversity he deal with during his junior year What was the reason he chose Georgia? What sort of connection his first name has to the Florida Gators? Did he really finish out a game last season with a broken fibula? Why did he choose to de-commit from Oklahoma? What sort of changes does he see in store for the offense at UGA? Brock Vandagriff: Getting to know Brock on DawgNation Prince Avenue Christian 5-star QB Brock Vandagriff commits to UGA Social media reacts strongly to Brock Vandagriff choosing Georgia DawgNation Daily: Breaking down what Vandagriff means to the Bulldogs Brock Vandagriff breaks down his 'Junior Day' unofficial visit, plans quick return Vandagriff previews big UGA visit, opens up on his Oklahoma de-commitment Just how competitive is Brock Vandagriff? Check out this early DawgNation story The post Brock Vandagriff: Watch the new 5-star Georgia commitment share his story appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS It's hard to say exactly what Georgia football will look like next season, but what a difference 6 1/2 weeks has already made. It has been an amazing and bold offensive transformation by Kirby Smart, a coach who can't seem to turn the pressure up on himself and his program enough with slogans like 'Do More' on the heels of 13 and 11-win seasons. So it was 6 1/2 weeks ago, LSU was on top of the world and the Bulldogs were headed toward the ranks of also-rans. The SEC Championship Game scoreboard said 37-10 by the end of the night, and Georgia looked every bit that far removed from title contention. The Bayou Bengals have since claimed the big prize, beating Clemson, securing a place in history with a record-breaking 15-0 season. But now it's Georgia, with a championship defense returning and an offensive overhaul, that looks like the better bet to party in 2020. The LSU staff has fragmented, the defensive coordinator and offensive architect gone. The record-breaking QB is on to the NFL, nine players turned pro early and are among 14 starters who are moving on. There's nowhere to go but down for Tigers coach Ed Orgeron. But Georgia is still, somehow, a program on the rise. Smart's defense, which allowed the fewest points and rushing yards per game in the nation last season, is bought in. Nine of 11 starters are back. Juniors Richard LeCounte, Eric Stokes, Monty Rice and Malik Herring passed up millions of dollars to return and chase the big prize. Many will wonder: Can the offense get the job done? We're not talking about Jake Fromm here, for a change. And Fromm going pro two weeks ago? Man, that's old news. There's so much more to talk about with this overhauled Georgia offense, and we're not even sure where to begin. Smart, the man who says 'if it ain't broke, find a way to make it better,' is on a roll. All this, just 6 1/2 weeks after the championship window appeared to be closing on Georgia football. Remember? Dropped passes, missed tackles, an ailing star running back and a depleted receiving corps. There was noargument about College Football Playoff worthiness. The Bulldogs limped to the finish line. RELATED: Kirby Smart praises LSU, explains Jake Fromm's struggles in defeat And yet, it was a noble regular-season finish. UGA won six straight to win a third-straight SEC East Division crown. But even in victory, right before our eyes, the quarterback was losing his confidence, the coaches were losing control of players, and the program was losing its pride. Another ho-hum Sugar Bowl trip was ahead. A handful of players quit the team early to train for the NFL draft. Others failed substance tests or flunked classes. No wonder Smart dodged the press. There was nothing remotely good or promising to say in those dark days of December. As Smart likes to say, the Bulldogs prefer to talk with their helmets, and any other major changes in direction would require an infusion of impact players and new coaches. Few could have anticipated just how aggressive Smart would be, but the team's showing in New Orleans provided a hint. The Bulldogs weren't ready to roll over and die. Baylor's Bears probably still don't know what hit them, or who hit them, with so many new faces and names filling the shoes of the 12 former starters who were missing in New Orleans. RELATED: Kirby Smart and Bulldogs score sweet statement win in Sugar Bowl As beleaguered and hard to watch as the 2019 Georgia football team was, it finished 5-1 versus Top 25 teams and with a No. 4 ranking. That was good enough for the record books, but not good enough for Smart, who has gone to work: The addition of grad-transfer Jamie Newman, a dual-threat QB with a big arm was captivating. The addition of Florida State grad-transfer TE Tre' Mckitty coupled with incoming freshman 5-star phenom Darnell Washington is fascinating. And now, in the past few days, Smart has turned his offensive staff upside down, landing former NFL OC Todd Monken and Southern Miss OC Buster Faulkner. There will be collateral damage, it's just a matter of who and when. Fans are scurrying to check Twitter profiles and message boards by the hour. Meanwhile, Smart is plotting his next move and another finishing kick on the fast-approaching February National Signing Day. A lot has changed in the past 6 1/2 weeks, and knowing Smart and the sense of urgency he has brought to Georgia football, there's no telling what could be next. Georgia football offseason Buster Faulkner the latest hire for Georgia offensive staff Kirby Smart lands Air Raid guru Todd Monken Todd Monken steps out of messy Cleveland and into ideal spot LSU DC Dave Aranda reveals UGA offensive game plan Mark Richt gives scout on FSU grad-transfer Tre' Mckitty UGA provides status update on James Coley Numbers game: Comparing Jamie Newman to Jake Fromm . The post Kirby Smart orchestrates amazing reinvigoration of Georgia football appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS You won't hear of too many college basketball coaches relishing an opportunity to play Kentucky in Rupp Arena, much less a team coming off a 32-point loss. But that's exactly where Georgia coach Tom Crean and his Bulldogs are right now, eager to prove themselves and make amends after an embarrassing 91-59 loss at Mississippi State on Saturday. 'I'm glad we're going on the road again right now, I really am,' Crean said on Monday, standing outside his office in Stegeman Coliseum as fans strolled by en route to a gymnastics meet. 'We've got to go test ourselves.' Georgia (11-6, 1-3 SEC) tips off at No. 15 Kentucky (13-4, 4-1) at 7 p.m. on Tuesday (TV: ESPN) looking to get back their pride. It wasn't just that UGA lost to Mississippi State by such a lopsided margin, it was how they lost. Georgia was outrebounded 40-22, it was beat in transition and out-physicaled and out-toughed at each turn. It was the first time this year's edition of Georgia Bulldogs, featuring projected NBA lottery pick Anthony Edwards and a recharged Rayshaun Hammonds, looked like the sad sack group of a year ago. RELATED: Crean calls out Bulldogs for pitiful' effort Crean, as upset as he was about the Saturday night defeat, clearly believes in this year's team and loves their disposition. 'I'm glad we get to go test ourselves right now, because we've got to bounce back and bounce back quickly from it,' said Crean, who won two outright Big Ten championships while at Indiana. 'We practiced well, we practiced confidently we have very hard workers, we have guys that are diligent and want to be good. It wasn't like we didn't go do it a couple of weeks ago, and we have to remember that, as well.' Indeed, Georgia's 65-62 road win at then-No. 9 Memphis on Jan. 4 was a victory to build on. It was only the second time in UGA basketball history the program won a non-conference road game against a Top 25 team. Beating Tennessee 80-63 last Wednesday after the Vols beat the Bulldogs by 46 a year ago was another program win. While Georgia might not beat Kentucky on Tuesday the odds say it probably won't Crean sounds confident his players will compete. This, even though they were blown out at Auburn (82-60) and Mississippi State (91-59) in their first two SEC road games. 'We have to understand that whether we're at home or whether we're on the road, we have to play a physical style of game when it comes to getting into people blocking out,' Crean said. 'Or, going for 50-50 balls, getting back in transition defense, being more active with your hands, all of those kind of things.' Georgia's next home game is at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday against Ole Miss. Georgia coach Tom Crean DawgNation Georgia Basketball Mississippi State wins battle of Bulldogs in Starkville, decisively Anthony Edwards puts the squeeze on Tennessee in blowout win Georgia falls in first SEC road game of season at Auburn Anthony Edwards says UGA didn't play tough enough vs. Kentucky Georgia basketball delivers signature Top 10 win at Memphs Freshman Anthony Edwards discloses injury, status Sahvir Wheeler on clutch game-winner, 'been there a ton of times' Tom Izzo on Georgia: 'That was an incredible comeback' Anthony Edwards lights up Michigan State for 37 in 93-85 loss Rayshaun Hammonds wrecks Georgia Tech Anthony Edwards draws standing ovation in opener Georgia freshman already making basketball history The post WATCH: Georgia basketball coach Tom Crean relishes Rupp road trip, opportunity at Kentucky appeared first on DawgNation.