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Bulldog News

    ATHENS Kirby Smart sends the same message every year, that the best players will play, regardless of class. That was evident last season when Georgia led the nation with three FWAA Freshmen All-American selections. There are young Bulldogs are starting the year at the head of the class once again. Georgia is one of three schools with four freshman players on the FWAA Freshman Player of the Year watch list, matching SEC rivals Tennessee and Alabama in that regard. Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence was the FWAA Freshman of the Year last season, garnering that honor before he beat Alabama in the College Football Playoff Championship Game. Tailback Zamir White and receiver George Pickens are two of the 37 offensive players on the watch list released on Friday. White, coming off ACL tears in each knee the past two years, is also a candidate for the FWAA Most Inspirational Player of the Year Award. Nebraska quarterback Adrian Martinez won that award last season. WATCH: Zamir White runs through another linebacker The Bulldogs have two players among the 37 defensive and special teams players on the watch list, outside linebackers Azeez Ojulari an Nolan Smith. Georgia might have had a fifth player on the watch list, but inside linebacker Nakobe Dean has been hobbled by a high ankle sprain. The FWAA Freshman Watch List will be updated weekly. The three Bulldogs on last year's FWAA Freshman All-American Team were: Defensive lineman Jordan Davis Offensive tackle Isaiah Wilson Offensive lineman Cade Mays Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm led the FWAA Freshman All-American Team in 2017, and was joined by left tackle Andrew Thomas. Kicker Rodrigo Blankenship was a member of the 2016 FWAA freshman team, and so was receiver Demetris Robertson. Robertson, however, was at Cal when he was recognized. Georgia RB Zamir White is a leading candidate for the Shaun Alexander Inspirational Freshman of the Year Award after recovering from ACL tears that prematurely ended the past two seasons. Read our full story here: https://t.co/HFXqBBz6OW (Photo: Steven Colquitt/UGA) pic.twitter.com/vALXc2DfdI Freshman Focus (@FocusFreshman) August 20, 2019 FWAA Freshman All-American Watch List SEC Bo Nix-QB-Auburn Owen Pappoe-OLB-Auburn Kenyon Green-OL-Texas A&M DeMarvin Leal-DL-Texas A&M George Pickens-WR-Georgia Zamir White (RS)-RB-Georgia Nolan Smith-LB-Georgia Azeez Ojulari (RS)-LB-Georgia Matt Corral (RS)-QB-Ole Miss Jerrion Ealy-RB-Ole Miss Trey Knox-WR-Arkansas Greg Brooks Jr.-DB Arkansas John Emery Jr.-RB-LSU Derek Stingley Jr.-CB-LSU Cade York-Kicker-LSU Wanya Morris-OL-Tennessee Darnell Wright-OL-Tennessee Henry To'o To'o-LB-Tennessee Warren Burrell-CB-Tennessee Evan Neal-OL-Alabama Will Reichard-Kicker-Alabama DJ Dale-DL-Alabama Justin Eboigbe-DL-Alabama Zacch Pickens-DL-South Carolina Jared Casey-LB-Kentucky Kaiir Elam-DB-Florida Big 12 Trejan Bridges-WR-Oklahoma Spencer Sanders (RS)-QB-Oklahoma State Tyler Lacy (RS)-DL-Oklahoma State Jordan Whittington-RB-Texas Jake Smith-WR-Texas Ayodele Adeoye (RS)-LB-Texas Breece Hall-RB-Iowa State Will McDonald (RS)-LB-Iowa State Pac-12 Jayden Daniels-QB-Arizona State Jalen 'Boobie' Curry-WR-Arizona Drake Jackson-DL-USC Sean Rhyan-OL-UCLA Dimitri Stanley (RS)-WR-Colorado Mark Perry-DB-Colorado Mycah Pittman-WR-Oregon Kayvon Thibodeaux-DL-Oregon Verone McKinley III (RS)-DB-Oregon Cameron Williams-DB-Washington Ryan Sanborn-Punter-Stanford Ben Lennon-Punter-Utah Big Ten Noah Cain-RB-Penn State Justin Shorter (RS)-WR-Penn State Rasheed Walker (RS)-OL-Penn State Zach Charbonnet-RB-Michigan Daxton Hill-DB-Michigan Wan'Dale Robinson-WR-Nebraska David Bell-WR-Purdue George Karlaftis-DL-Purdue Garrett Wilson-WR-Ohio State Jaelen Gill (RS)-WR-Ohio State Cameron Williams-LB-Indiana Julian Barnett-DB-Michigan State ACC Sam Howell-QB-North Carolina Jarren Williams (RS)-QB-Miami Zion Nelson-OL-Miami Nolan Groulx-WR-Wake Forest Frank Ladson Jr.-WR-Clemson KJ Henry (RS)-DL-Clemson Zonovan Knight-RB-NC State Payton Wilson (RS)-LB-NC State Savion Jackson-DL-NC State Jowon Briggs-DL-Virginia Dontae Lucas-OL-Florida State Jaleel McRae-LB-Florida State Akeem Dent-DB-Florida State Independent Jarrett Patterson (RS)-OL-Notre Dame Jacob Lacey-DL-Notre Dame Jay Bramblett-Punter-Notre Dame The post Zamir White among 4 Georgia players on FWAA Freshman watch list appeared first on DawgNation.
  • The nation’s No.10 overall recruit and top tight end recruit, Arik Gilbert helped Marietta High School upset Rome High School 41-14 in the Corky Kell Classic Thursday night. Gilbert hauled in a one-handed catch in the back corner of the endzone to give the Blue Devils a 13-0 lead early in the game. According to 247Sports crystal ball predictions, Gilbert is expected to commit to Georgia. Based on Gilbert’s 247Sports rating, he would be the 11-best recruit to commit to Georgia since 247Sports started rating recruits.
  • ATHENS Georgia football graduate transfer Lawrence Cager is the first to admit it has been quite a transition these past few months of his life. 'Obviously, it's two different sides of the totem pole, Miami and Athens,' said Cager, a 6-foot-5, 220-pound receiver who led the Hurricanes in touchdown catches and yards per reception last season. RELATED: Fascinating story of how Lawrence Cager ended up at UGA 'But I love it here. It's a great place and the team welcomed me with open arms, (and) Coach Smart welcomed me with open arms. I'm just happy to be here.' It was a tough 2018 season for Miami under former coach Mark Richt, particularly with an unsettled quarterback situation. RELATED: Fire and Ice, Cager compares Mark Richt to Kirby Cager knew that coming to Georgia he wouldn't have that issue with third-year starting quarterback Jake Fromm under center. WATCH: Lawrence Cager remembers Kirby Smart recruiting call He also knew what he was getting in an offensive coordinator in recently promoted James Coley. Coley was Miami's offensive coordinator Cager's freshman year and recruited him to the Hurricanes. 'Honestly, I didn't even look at the receiver situation,' said Cager, who has been sharing first team reps in the WR rotation throughout fall camp. 'Coach Coley and Coach Smart called me as soon as I put my name in the portal.' Some thought Cager might declare himself eligible for the NFL draft. Cager is already on the Senior Bowl radar. But Cager decided a chance to win a championship at Georgia and showcase his abilities more was the better way to go. 'I put my trust in those guys 10 times out of 10,' Cager said. 'Coach Coley when he coached me at Miami, and Coach Smart recruiting me heavy when I was being recruited by Alabama, so I just trusted them and we'll see how it goes.' It is well documented that Georgia will be relying on new and inexperienced receivers this season. Two of the three Bulldogs' receivers drafted into the NFL were underclassmen, and then leading returning receiver Jeremiah Hollomon transferred to Florida International this summer. RELATED: Breaking down Georgia's 8 transfers this offseason Coley said earlier in fall camp that Cager has been a good fit for Georgia on and off the field. 'Just coming to work every day and enjoying the atmosphere of what we have and being positive with learning and the learning curve,' Coley said. 'The big thing that he brings, he brings experience. So where you sit back and you say, well, I wonder if this guy's going to make this play in a particular time'. 'Veteran guys, you've seen it happen and you know that they've been those spotlights.' And, Coley said, he knows what Cager will do out of the spotlight. 'Knowing him a little bit further, working with him for a full year,' Coley said, 'you knew what type of character kid he is.' Indeed, Cager has done his best to use his experience to help lead in the receivers room. Senior Tyler Simmons, with nine catches last season, is UGA's leading returning receiver. 'From a receiver room aspect, we came in with the mindset, myself, Tyler, all the receivers, especially me and Tyler being seniors , that it's on us,' Cager said. 'Whether it's making plays on the perimeter or special teams, a long as we have that mindset that it's on us and we come with that mindset that it's on us, then we can attack every day like it's a game.' Georgia football fall camp D'Andre Swift jersey watch in full effect Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof The post Georgia WR Lawrence Cager bought in, ready to attack every day' appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Georgia football players have put training camp behind them and are working on Vanderbilt, precisely how Kirby Smart had planned. The No. 3-ranked Bulldogs play at Vanderbilt at 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 31 in Nashville, their long-term goal a national championship, but the immediate focus on the Commodores. The good news at practice on Thursday was preseason All-American and Heisman Trophy candidate D'Andre Swift back in a red practice jersey. RELATED: Kirby Smart plays off D'Andre Swift jersey color This is where Smart would roll his eyes and tell the media that way too much is being made of what color jersey Swift is wearing in practices. But this is also where many Georgia fans, aware of Swift's injury history and his importance to the teams' title hopes, want to know more. Swift was nagged by injuries last season after undergoing sports hernia surgery in January of 2018. Swift was limited in spring drills, and then things got worse at South Carolina last season when Swift suffered a foot injury. Once healthy last season, Swift was seemingly unstoppable in November, averaging more than 9 yards per carry during a stretch of wins over Florida, Kentucky and Auburn. Georgia was arguably playing the best football in the nation last November, and many are expecting big things from Swift this season. So when Swift was late coming out for practice on Aug. 13, getting extra treatment on the heels of Scrimmage One, per NFL scouts, there were concerns. Had Swift aggravated the groin injury? Was it something else? Or, was it nothing. When Swift was back at practice later in the week, showing no-ill effects or wearing any added braces or tape, all seemed well. Then came Wednesday's practice this week, when Swift was in a black practice jersey. The non-contact jersey could have been as simple as making sure Swift didn't take any necessary hits in thud drills. But then, there might also have been more to the story and still might be as it has been a very physical fall camp and Swift saw hitting action in Scrimmage One like anyone else. Either way, Smart was saying when asked about Swift's non-contact jersey on Wednesday, playing off the question by claiming he was merely trying to distract the media. Speculation at this point isn't worth much, as even if Swift is nursing a bruised shoulder or sternum there's no reason to believe he couldn't be ready to play by Aug. 31. And, if for some reason the injury proves more serious, Georgia has tremendous talent and depth in the offensive backfield. Senior tailback Brian Herrien, who has been first through the drill work of late, was actually more effective running the ball in the Sugar Bowl than Swift. RELATED: Kirby Smart explains benefit of multiple 1,00o-yard rushers Further, sophomore James Cook has had a tremendous offseason of growth, drawing consistent praise from his hard-to-please head coach. Zamir White's comeback from ACL surgery last August has been well-documented, creating a sense of guarded optimism around the program that the No. 1 back in the 2018 signing class might indeed make a significant impact. Finally, incoming freshman tailback Kenny McIntosh has proven his skills, drawing praise from Smart after a strong Scrimmage Two performance. Other reported observations included Cade Mays continuing to work with the first-team offensive line, and inside linebacker Nakobe Dean (ankle) and Jamaree Salyer (lower leg) continue to be out of practice. Georgia football fall camp Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof The post Georgia football practice: D'Andre Swift jersey watch (red) in full effect appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Kirby Smart had his game face on following Wednesday's practice, at times, downright edgy. The fourth-year Georgia football coach is typically no-nonsense when it comes to media sessions, but there was an added edge with the season-opening game less than a week-and-a-half away. 'We weren't very good Tuesday but we had a better practice today,' Smart said. 'The leaders stepped up, challenged them to have a better practice. I thought they had a better practice today.' Good thing, because positions remain up for grabs at most every spot on the team, it seems. Smart elaborated on several position battles, some more unexpected than others, such as in the secondary where Eric Stokes has yet to lockdown a starting job. 'He (Stokes) is in competition right now, there are four guys out there at corner who are competing and he knows that he has top step up and play well every day because you're only judged based on your last play,' Smart said. 'He's challenging for one of those starting positions.' Sophomore Tyson Campbell has been running opposite Stokes with the Ones. Freshman Tyrique Stevenson has been nicked up but he's one of the other corners pushing for playing time, along with junior college transfer D.J. Daniel. The 'star' position the fifth defensive back is another heated competition between Mark Webb and Divaad Wilson. 'They've both done a good job, they're both competitive, both of those kids probably deserve to play,' Smart said. 'They've worked really hard, and they're different. They're similar, they're similar in body types, they're physical, but they're different and they've both done a good job. 'We hope to be able to keep guys fresh and play the best guy. Sometimes you've got to go with the hot hand and sometimes you've got to go with the guy who had the best week of practice.' Smart said Tyrique McGhee, who played the Star last season, is playing more corner because the Bulldogs want to go bigger and more physical at the position. 'I expect Tyrique to play a lot, but Tyrique is a very dominant special teams player who can play strong safety, free safety, star, money, and corner, very unique player,' Smart said. 'A utility guy who can play a little bit of everything and we expect him to do that and he's in competition to get playing time at, really, all positions. 'He really hasn't played much star because we've got those other guys reps.' Georgia football coach Kirby Smart Kirby Smart talks up 'everyday' competition Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof Leave a Comment The post Edgy Georgia football coach Kirby Smart breaks down cornerback battles appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS The Georgia football receiving ranks are wide open outside of senior Tyler Simmons locking down a spot. Bulldogs coach Kirby Smart elaborated on the position group following Wednesday's practice, making it clear the competition is alive and well with the season-opening game fast approaching. It has been well-documented that Georgia lost its top four receivers from a season ago, along with its top pass-catching tight end. 'Tyler Simmons is a starter for us, assuming he's healthy and ready to go, but outside of him there's battles at every one of those positions,' Smart said. 'The slot, the receiver opposite him, the two deep at receiver i t's everyday. 'Guys rotate positions and play all kinds of positions. Tyler's probably a little bit ahead of the other guys just in terms of experience, but outside of that, it's wide open.' Georgia most often uses a three-receiver set as its base formation in the media viewing portion of practice. Simmons has been taking first-team reps opposite Matt Landers, with Demetris Robertson first up in the slot. Smart pointed to the veteran nature Simmons brings when asked what gives him an edge. Simmons is the leading returning receiver from last season with nine catches in 2018. 'Other than experience,' Smart said, 'I'd say it's his practice habits and speed.' Smart said junior receiver Trey Blount has 'done a great job had some great scrimmages.' Blount, Smart said, is 'tough, makes the hard catches, one of our bestsellers blockers, very consistent.' Blount was lined up behind Landers and the outside receiver position opposite Simmons, with freshman George Pickens third. Smart said following last Saturday's scrimmage he has been impressed with Pickens, but the newcomer from Hoover, Ala., needs to learn the playbook. 'He's a talented player, but he's got to learn his assignments and learn what to do,' Smart said, 'because he could certainly help us.' Miami grad-transfer Lawrence Cager, a 6-foot-5 target, has been working behind Simmons at outside receiver and Smart has had good things to say about him through fall camp. Incoming freshman receiver Dominick Blaylock is expected to be another contributor in the slot, though he's currently working No. 3 at the position behind Robertson and Kearis Jackson. Georgia football coach Kirby Smart . Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof The post Kirby Smart talks up everyday' competition for Georgia football in unsettled WR corps appeared first on DawgNation.
  • EDITOR'S NOTE: This original Andrew Thomas profile story continues a special series in partnership with Georgia Farm Bureau profiling homegrown talent from the state of Georgia. To access other HomeGrown Talent articles please visit the series hub on DawgNation.com. Andrew Thomas continues to catch the headlines. The junior left tackle is right in the midst of a few more this week with the news he was named to a pair of two preseason All-America teams. #ATD #GoDawgs pic.twitter.com/GrGY51zzQ7 Georgia Football (@GeorgiaFootball) August 20, 2019 The accolades are piling up for the Lithonia native these days. Those are well deserved. Thomas was asked by Kirby Smart to represent the team this summer at SEC Media Days. That simply reflected his status and worth on the team since his first season back in 2017. 'He started every game that he's been at the University of Georgia,' Smart said in Hoover. 'He's a tremendous leader, person. Charismatic. Doesn't say a whole lot all the time. That's why it's fun to bring him to this event. I told him today as we got off the plane: Andrew, you're going to have to talk today. And I think he's excited to do that.' Thomas started all 15 games of that magical season for Bulldog fans. That feat of starting 15 games for a team that went on to win the SEC championship, a national semifinal and then play in the national title game will likely never be duplicated by a true freshman again at Georgia. The Pace Academy alumnus will also see his name continue to pepper the top 5 and top 10 picks on all the 2020 NFL mock draft boards for the foreseeable future. Thomas is just that good. It was also interesting to see that Georgia coach Kirby Smart chose Thomas to be the Bulldog to represent the program when the West End Zone expansion ribbon-cutting took place. That's because Thomas has represented everything the Bulldogs hope to sign and enrich as a student-athlete matriculating to the program in his three-plus years at Georgia. Andrew Thomas: His path from Pace Academy to Georgia It is very hard to believe how quickly things have progressed for the former Army All-American since Georgia began to seriously recruit him in January of 2016. That was the first few months that Sam Pittman was on campus in Athens. Thomas certainly represents his first 500-foot home run for the program on the recruiting trail. Here's the crazy part: Thomas felt that he wasn't really being recruited by UGA until Pittman arrived. That's even though he was an outstanding lineman for a state championship team as a junior. That changed fast when Pittman came to Athens. He was one of the first in-state targets that the program prioritized once they arrived. There was a January visit in 2016 that changed things. 'It changed it a lot actually,' Thomas told DawgNation in February of 2016. 'Because I didn't talk to the old staff as much as the new staff just with them being here for this short of a time. So it seems like they are really interested in me.' Georgia brought in a senior transfer from Rhode Island in Tyler Catalina. Catalina would eventually on to the NFL at guard, but at that time he was the closest thing the program had to a tackle on campus. 'They really need tackles,' Thomas said back then. He actually grew up a Georgia fan. Thomas spoke then about what that pull might be for him as he was weighing out a decision. 'I guess everyone wants to be a hometown hero,' Thomas said. 'So I mean it seems like [they want] me to be one. But I've always been a Dawg fan and now especially meeting the new staff I think that will one of my schools I will be looking at in the future.' Clemson was another big contender here. For a long time. Yet it did sound like the famed '93KDay' meant a seismic change in his recruiting journey. It meant for a lot of current Bulldogs. Especially Thomas. 'It was just a overall great experience,' Thomas said. 'If you would have seen the fans there, it was ridiculous. The fire marshall was like had to deny people from coming in. But it was just a great atmosphere. I loved going on the field. It made me want to like to want to put on the pads and play so I just had a good feel about that.' It helped Georgia's chances. A lot. 'I already liked Georgia a lot,' he said. 'But it definitely moved them up a little bit farther.' The anchor moments were in place for a decision. He would commit to the Bulldogs less than three months later out at the Opening at Nike headquarters in Oregon. Why Andrew Thomas chose Georgia in the end His recruiting day news story for DawgNation still looms large today. That was back on July 10, 2016. He was rated as the nation's No. 9 prospect at the time. He was still recovering him a shoulder injury he was mending from he suffered at The Opening regional in Atlanta. That was a great week for the 2017 class. Thomas was the fourth prospect with a 4-star rating to choose the Bulldogs that week alone. 'The last times I have been up to visit Georgia there has always been Coach Sam Pittman [who] has always been saying I am feeling really good today but I would be feeling even better if I got my left tackle' whenever we hung out,' Thomas said that week. What made up his mind? His father, Andre Thomas, shared why the Bulldogs and Pitman stood out. Thomas said his son was sold on Pittman from the first meeting. That was important as Thomas was not deemed a recruiting priority by the previous staff. He was getting recruited harder by Alabama, Clemson, Florida State and Notre Dame. 'He said that he loved him,' Thomas said. 'He said he loved his personality and how he communicates with him.' Andre Thomas felt his son had that 'right feeling' from the jump with Pittman. The junior All-American candidate chose five factors to drive his decision. Those were academics, fit, coaching staff, distance and playing time. 'Georgia had most of those qualities as the very top,' his father said. 'They didn't have the best out of all of those, but they had the most at the top compared to those other schools.' The priorities there were the academics and coaching staff.Thomas said he was committed to letting his son make that decision. He never pushed him, but actually shared that he liked Notre Dame the most at first. 'But the main thing here is it was his decision,' Andre Thomas said. 'He was the one that was going to have to go to school and play football for four years.' Thomas and his family sat down every day and hashed out his decision about a month prior to his public commitment. 'We didn't establish a second team for Andrew,' his father said. 'There wasn't another school which finished right behind. There was just Georgia.' What Andrew Thomas now means for Georgia It is quite the sight to scroll through the DawgNation photo archives for Thomas from back in 2016 and compare it to the man that now mans that left tackle spot in Athens. Those moments seem like a ringing endorsement for Scott Sinclair's weight training program and the suit of armor he has chiseled around the 6-foot-5, 320-pound junior. Thomas is clearly one of the most important recruits of the Smart era. Perhaps even the most vital. Jake Fromm is essentially the only other signee since Smart arrived that has meant as much to the overall bottom line of wins and losses in the program. Look for Georgia to try to run more gap schemes this year on offense. Those zone schemes have been a staple of the Bulldog rushing offense in the past. Thomas hinted at that at Media Days. With all that, there is one clear goal. It is not to knock out the Alabama program that has kept the Bulldogs from even greater glories over his first two seasons. 'We want to win a national championship,' Thomas said. 'So whoever is in the way, that's who we want to beat.' Pittman has made a big difference in his growth while in Athens. His high school line coach, Kevin Johnson, also shaped his technique and understanding of the game prior to his arrival in college football. He has all the accolades, but it still means something to him to be playing for his home state. 'It is a dream come true,' Thomas told DawgNation this month. 'Like being able to represent the G.' Representing my family is pretty cool.' Homegrown Talents: The DawgNation series so far Warren McClendon: Family roots run 44 years deep for this Georgia family D.J. Daniel: Likely impact defensive back took a longer route to Athens Travon Walker: Big things are expected on the D-Line from 5-star freshman Dominick Blaylock:Talented freshman WR found a homegrown fit in Athens Nolan Smith: From 'Baby Boy' to a long-awaited Bulldog in Athens The post Andrew Thomas has grown into a 'hometown hero' for the Georgia Bulldogs appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia coach Kirby Smart seemed to play off the significance of preseason All-American tailback D'Andre Swift wearing a non-contact jersey in Wednesday's practice. 'That was just so you all would focus on that and not see the other stuff, it obviously worked,' Smart said. 'I'm glad you all got that.' Swift was wearing a black, no-contact jersey at the start of practice on Wednesday. It was an edgier version of Smart in Wednesday's press conference, an indication he head coach is likely as ready as anyone for the season to start. The No. 3-ranked Bulldogs open at Vanderbilt at 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 31. It's early, but one gets the feeling Swift's health status might become a weekly item of note based on his injury history and the attention to detail he spends on maintaining his health. The talented junior tailback was late coming out to practice on Aug. 13, creating a bit of an Internet stir following Scrimmage One. But then Swift was back for the start of drills on Thursday showing no ill-effects in warmups no braces, not held out of drills, the usual red practice jersey and all seemed well. Indeed, Smart said following last Saturday's scrimmage that Swift was fine. 'D'Andre's been good, D'Andre's a leader in that group, he's very bright,' Smart said. 'And I say Brian (Herrien) is our most experienced (tailback) because Brian has been here longer, Brian doesn't have as much volume of carry as D'Andre has. But Brian has more practice experience probably more reps, because you've gotta remember he went through a whole spring when D'Andre was still in high school. But D'Andre's been good.' The Herrien input from Smart was unsolicited, and telling. Herrien has quietly had a strong fall camp and was first through the running backs line in drills even after Swift returned last week. Swift started the first four games last season before Elijah Holyfield replaced him in the starting lineup on account of Swift being slowed by nagging injuries. RELATED: D'Andre Swift says sky is the limit in 2019 Swift had double hernia surgery in January of 2018 and was limited in spring drills and at the start of last season. 'I was trying to save myself, I would say,' Swift said earlier in fall camp, explaining the mindset he brought into the 2018 season. 'Not trying to push it too much where I would hurt myself. 'But now I don't have any limits.' Swift made it clear he will go to the appropriate lengths to make sure he's healthy this season, too. 'I do a good job of taking care of my body, I'm always in the training room, I live in the training room, so I'm ready to go and I'm ready to get to work,' Swift said. 'Whatever workload the coaches throw at me, I'm ready for that workload.' Injury updates Smart said backup offensive lineman Jamaree Salyer and inside linebacker Nakobe Dean are expected to return soon from their injuries after missing the first half of Wednesday's practice. 'They were both out there at practice halfway though, working with the trainers,' Smart said. 'They are both dinged up, but I expect a full recovery soon.' Smart indicated that junior college transfer Jermaine Johnson has not yet been 100 percent coming off an ankle injury. 'eI don't know that Jermaine has been full speed,' Smart said. 'In the scrimmage the other day he showed burst, acceleration and some edge situations where he did a really nice job. 'We were pleased with his jump from Scrimmage One to Scrimmage Two but he needs to continue to improve.' Georgia football fall camp Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof The post WATCH: Georgia football coach Kirby Smart makes light of D'Andre Swift in non-contact jersey appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia fans might have to get used to mix reviews from practice on D'Andre Swift, as one never knows what the case will be with the explosive Bulldogs' back. Swift was wearing a black 'no-contact' jersey in Wednesday's practice, which doesn't necessarily mean he's nursing any sort of serious injury, but it's still noteworthy. RELATED: Georgia has proof of being RBU,' top backfield in nation Senior Brian Herrien has been going No. 1 through the running backs drill work since Swift was late coming out of practice on Aug. 13. Kirby Smart said Swift was fine following Scrimmage Two, but the head coach's definition of 'fine' was different than Swift's last season. Swift said coming into this season that he planned to 'live in the training room,' as much to ensure and manage his health as anything. As for what could be slowing him in fall camp, or leading to him being in a non-contact jersey, only Smart is available to answer that question following Wednesday's practice. For now, it's wait and see. The most comforting element for Georgia fans is the great depth the team boasts, with Herrien a capable No. 1 if called upon, along with electric James Cook, powerful Zamir White and versatile freshman Kenny McIntosh. RELATED: Could James Cook be Georgia's biggest surprise? Connor Riley contributed to this report Defensive line movement Julian Rochester is still wearing a brace on his right knee, but he was going through some explosive drills at the start of practice. Rochester had ACL surgery after last season. David Marshall, coming off foot surgery, was exploding out of his stance on the snap and showing no ill-effects. Marshall appears to be closer to playing than Rochester based on Wednesday observations. O-Line Look The Georgia offensive line has had a pretty familiar look in fall drills with the exception of the right guard position, where Cade Mays and Ben Cleveland have been rotating with the ones. Mays was back with the first team at the start of Wednesday's practice, with the rest of the line intact: LT Andrew Thomas, LG Solomon Kindley, C Trey Hill and RT Isaiah Wilson. Sophomore Jamaree Salyer, who on Tuesday was in a walking boot and on crutches leaving the football building per an AJC.com report, was not at practice. Receiver rotation Tyler Simmons and Matt Landers might not strike fear into many cornerbacks at this stage of the season, but they continue to work with the first team as the perimeter receivers. Demetris Robertson is working No. 1 in the slot. Lawrence Cager was working No. 2 behind Simmons with Tommy Bush the third receiver through the line. Behind Landers, Trey Blount was working No. 2 and George Pickens was No. 3. Kearis Jackson is the No. 2 slot receiver, followed by Dominick Blaylock at No. 3. Charlie Woerner continues to be first through the tight end drills followed by John FitzPatrick and Eli Wolf. Still sidelined Freshman middle linebacker Nakobe Dean remains sidelined after suffering a high ankle sprain last week. Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof The post Georgia football practice report: D'Andre Swift in non-contact jersey appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Tyler Clark represents the old warhorse on the Georgia football defense, a durable 6-foot-3, 300-pound lineman who just keeps coming back for more. Clark, a starter on the defensive front each of the past two seasons, has played 41 games in his career and is ready for more and better this season. 'I feel great, I'm healthier, I'm stronger and I'm faster,' said Clark, a product of Americus, Ga. 'We have everybody coming back (on the D-Line), and we're ready.' Clark and his fellow senior defensive linemen certainly have heard the talk that their unit is one of the most concerning on the team. There are no apparent first-round NFL Draft picks or senior dominators, and Clark admits he didn't make the progress last season that he should have. 'I didn't do as well as I thought, or as well as I could,' Clark said. 'I started feeling myself too much, and it got in my head. But I'm going to be back this year.' The fact Clark came out to talk to the media and own up to his lackluster junior season was telling. Apparently, all it took was letting him know the media wanted to hear from him during his autograph session at FanDay. Clark gives the impression of a team-first guy who is eager to please the fans and his coaches, to the point of playing through several painful ailments. Indeed, Clark said the training room has been a big part of his regiment and staying durable enough to answer the bell for the Bulldogs week-in and week-out. 'It's been pretty tough playing in the SEC, and when I come out of the games, of course there will be bumps and bruises,' Clark said. 'I go in the cold tub, I get the hammers, I get rolled out, stretched and massaged every Sunday.' And then Clark comes back for more, working against one of the best offensive lines in the country to sharpen his skills. 'It feels like a Saturday in Athens going against that O-Line in practice,' Clark said. 'But it's the only O-Line we'll face like that.' Clark would know, he's seen them all, and now he's ready for a strong finish his senior season. Georgia football DL Tyler Clark DawgNation Georgia football fall camp WATCH: Why Georgia has the best backfield in college football Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind Solomon Kindley emerging as preseason first-team AA Georgia No. 3 in preseason AP Top 25 New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof The post WATCH: Tyler Clark, Georgia's D-Line warhorse ready for more rugged action appeared first on DawgNation.

Local News

  • The Keep Athens-Clarke County Beautiful organization is holding a Saturday fundraiser in downtown Athens: the 10th annual Dirty Dance Event is set for 5 o’clock at the Little Kings Shuffle Club.    From KAACB…   Bring your family and friends down to Little Kings Shuffle Club in downtown Athens on August 24, 2019 to give litter the hustle! KACCB is hosting its 10th annual DIRTY DANCE BENEFIT. This event will raise funds for KACCB’s mission of working toward a cleaner, more beautiful environment. It's time to show your support for the organization that provides Athens with daffodil plantings on the loop, the Litter Hotline, Christmas tree recycling, the Community Toolshed, Adopt-A-Highway, cigarette butt receptacles, school planting and beautification…and many other initiatives! The event will start at 5:00 PM and will feature dinner for sale. Dance performances are scheduled throughout the night, but there will be plenty of time for you and your kids to shake it yourselves! Face Painting and a photo booth will be available. Volunteers will be on hand to craft with kids and there will be a great raffle for family themed gift baskets, $1 per ticket! A $5.00 suggested donation (and $3.00 for kids) will grant you access into this fun, family event. Tickets can be purchased at the door. Find more information at keepathensbeautiful.org. We hope to see you and your family there!
  • Possibly thousands of children and adults alike will be out across the state with clipboards and sharp eyes Friday and Saturday, out where flowers are growing to spot and count certain kinds of insect. They will be to be part of the first “Great Georgia Pollinator Census,” launched by the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension this year after a two-year pilot program.    The census has three basic purposes, says organizer Becky Griffin, community and school garden coordinator with the Extension’s Center for Urban Agriculture. One goal is simply to get a statewide snapshot of the bees, wasps, flies, butterflies, moths and other insects that are crucial in plants’ life cycles by spreading pollen.    Griffin also hopes to encourage the creation of sustainable habitats for pollinators and to increase public entomological literacy. She says it's the first such survey that's been done in the country, to her knowledge volunteers are being asked to check off eight categories - carpenter bees, bumblebees, honey bees, small bees, wasps, flies, butterflies/moths, and other insects. 
  • Georgia Public Service Commissioner Tim Echols, Republican from Jefferson, announces the schedule for his annual Clean Energy Roadshow. The tour, which spotlights alternative fuel vehicles, begins Tuesday in Atlanta and includes stops in Augusta, Albany, Savannah, and Macon.    ATLANTA – August 27th (Tue) – Southface Institute AUGUSTA – August 28th (Wed) – Augusta State University ALBANY – September 24th (Tue) – Albany State University SAVANNAH – October 8th (Tue) – Georgia Tech Savannah Campus ATLANTA – October 16th (Wed) – Georgia Power Company Customer Resource Center MACON – October 17th (Thu) – Middle Georgia Regional Commission
  • --- A late second half goal pushed Purdue over the Georgia soccer team, 1-0, in the season opener at Folk Field on Thursday night.   “It was a tough game,” Georgia head coach Billy Lesesne said. “We fought hard and had some good battling out there, but just didn’t get the result we were after. Purdue is a good team and this is a tough atmosphere to play in. I thought the game was pretty even for most of it and then they got a late goal. We played hard throughout, but we weren’t as clinical in the final third as we need to be. We lost a little bit of our shape in midfield, but there were bright spots. There are things we need to work on to improve. We have to regroup over the next couple of days to prepare for our home opener on Sunday against Binghamton.”   With a matured team filling the pitch for the 2019 season, Haley Sorrell is the only freshman that made her starting lineup debut in the season opener. Three other rookies played against the Boilermakers, including Chloe Chapman, Jocelyn Hugo, and Mallie McKenzie.    To start, the Bulldogs (0-1) commanded the field, controlling possession and keeping the Boilermakers outside of the final third. A foul outside the box gave Reagan Glisson a free kick opportunity at the 21-minute mark, which went into the hands of the goalkeeper. The junior forward finished the game with three shots, two on target.    The Boilermakers (1-0) took their first shot of the game with 10 minutes left in the first half.    Both teams turned up the energy in the second half. With about 20 minutes left in the game, Bella Ponzi took a shot outside the 18 that went wide left and Delaney Erwin followed that up with a shot that was barely right of the net for the Bulldogs’ best look of the night.   It was Purdue that capitalized on an opportunity in the 82nd minute with a shot from Sarah Griffith to make the score 1-0.    The Bulldogs finished with seven shots and four saves made by sophomore goalkeeper Emory Wegener.    The home opener for the Bulldogs is set for Sunday, August 25 against Binghamton at 1 p.m. Admission to the Turner Soccer Complex is free. 
  • Today is a groundbreaking day in Athens: a 10 o’clock ceremony marks the start of work on a new Center for Art and Nature at the State Botanical Garden on South Milledge Avenue.  The University of Georgia’s University Curriculum Committee holds its first meeting of the new fall semester: it’s set for 3:30 at New College on Herty Drive in Athens.  It is billed as the University of Georgia’s largest annual day of community service: this year’s Dawg Day of Service is set for Saturday, with volunteers gathering at 9 o’clock tomorrow morning at UGA’s Tate Student Center. 

Bulldog News

  • ATHENS Kirby Smart sends the same message every year, that the best players will play, regardless of class. That was evident last season when Georgia led the nation with three FWAA Freshmen All-American selections. There are young Bulldogs are starting the year at the head of the class once again. Georgia is one of three schools with four freshman players on the FWAA Freshman Player of the Year watch list, matching SEC rivals Tennessee and Alabama in that regard. Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence was the FWAA Freshman of the Year last season, garnering that honor before he beat Alabama in the College Football Playoff Championship Game. Tailback Zamir White and receiver George Pickens are two of the 37 offensive players on the watch list released on Friday. White, coming off ACL tears in each knee the past two years, is also a candidate for the FWAA Most Inspirational Player of the Year Award. Nebraska quarterback Adrian Martinez won that award last season. WATCH: Zamir White runs through another linebacker The Bulldogs have two players among the 37 defensive and special teams players on the watch list, outside linebackers Azeez Ojulari an Nolan Smith. Georgia might have had a fifth player on the watch list, but inside linebacker Nakobe Dean has been hobbled by a high ankle sprain. The FWAA Freshman Watch List will be updated weekly. The three Bulldogs on last year's FWAA Freshman All-American Team were: Defensive lineman Jordan Davis Offensive tackle Isaiah Wilson Offensive lineman Cade Mays Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm led the FWAA Freshman All-American Team in 2017, and was joined by left tackle Andrew Thomas. Kicker Rodrigo Blankenship was a member of the 2016 FWAA freshman team, and so was receiver Demetris Robertson. Robertson, however, was at Cal when he was recognized. Georgia RB Zamir White is a leading candidate for the Shaun Alexander Inspirational Freshman of the Year Award after recovering from ACL tears that prematurely ended the past two seasons. Read our full story here: https://t.co/HFXqBBz6OW (Photo: Steven Colquitt/UGA) pic.twitter.com/vALXc2DfdI Freshman Focus (@FocusFreshman) August 20, 2019 FWAA Freshman All-American Watch List SEC Bo Nix-QB-Auburn Owen Pappoe-OLB-Auburn Kenyon Green-OL-Texas A&M DeMarvin Leal-DL-Texas A&M George Pickens-WR-Georgia Zamir White (RS)-RB-Georgia Nolan Smith-LB-Georgia Azeez Ojulari (RS)-LB-Georgia Matt Corral (RS)-QB-Ole Miss Jerrion Ealy-RB-Ole Miss Trey Knox-WR-Arkansas Greg Brooks Jr.-DB Arkansas John Emery Jr.-RB-LSU Derek Stingley Jr.-CB-LSU Cade York-Kicker-LSU Wanya Morris-OL-Tennessee Darnell Wright-OL-Tennessee Henry To'o To'o-LB-Tennessee Warren Burrell-CB-Tennessee Evan Neal-OL-Alabama Will Reichard-Kicker-Alabama DJ Dale-DL-Alabama Justin Eboigbe-DL-Alabama Zacch Pickens-DL-South Carolina Jared Casey-LB-Kentucky Kaiir Elam-DB-Florida Big 12 Trejan Bridges-WR-Oklahoma Spencer Sanders (RS)-QB-Oklahoma State Tyler Lacy (RS)-DL-Oklahoma State Jordan Whittington-RB-Texas Jake Smith-WR-Texas Ayodele Adeoye (RS)-LB-Texas Breece Hall-RB-Iowa State Will McDonald (RS)-LB-Iowa State Pac-12 Jayden Daniels-QB-Arizona State Jalen 'Boobie' Curry-WR-Arizona Drake Jackson-DL-USC Sean Rhyan-OL-UCLA Dimitri Stanley (RS)-WR-Colorado Mark Perry-DB-Colorado Mycah Pittman-WR-Oregon Kayvon Thibodeaux-DL-Oregon Verone McKinley III (RS)-DB-Oregon Cameron Williams-DB-Washington Ryan Sanborn-Punter-Stanford Ben Lennon-Punter-Utah Big Ten Noah Cain-RB-Penn State Justin Shorter (RS)-WR-Penn State Rasheed Walker (RS)-OL-Penn State Zach Charbonnet-RB-Michigan Daxton Hill-DB-Michigan Wan'Dale Robinson-WR-Nebraska David Bell-WR-Purdue George Karlaftis-DL-Purdue Garrett Wilson-WR-Ohio State Jaelen Gill (RS)-WR-Ohio State Cameron Williams-LB-Indiana Julian Barnett-DB-Michigan State ACC Sam Howell-QB-North Carolina Jarren Williams (RS)-QB-Miami Zion Nelson-OL-Miami Nolan Groulx-WR-Wake Forest Frank Ladson Jr.-WR-Clemson KJ Henry (RS)-DL-Clemson Zonovan Knight-RB-NC State Payton Wilson (RS)-LB-NC State Savion Jackson-DL-NC State Jowon Briggs-DL-Virginia Dontae Lucas-OL-Florida State Jaleel McRae-LB-Florida State Akeem Dent-DB-Florida State Independent Jarrett Patterson (RS)-OL-Notre Dame Jacob Lacey-DL-Notre Dame Jay Bramblett-Punter-Notre Dame The post Zamir White among 4 Georgia players on FWAA Freshman watch list appeared first on DawgNation.
  • The nation’s No.10 overall recruit and top tight end recruit, Arik Gilbert helped Marietta High School upset Rome High School 41-14 in the Corky Kell Classic Thursday night. Gilbert hauled in a one-handed catch in the back corner of the endzone to give the Blue Devils a 13-0 lead early in the game. According to 247Sports crystal ball predictions, Gilbert is expected to commit to Georgia. Based on Gilbert’s 247Sports rating, he would be the 11-best recruit to commit to Georgia since 247Sports started rating recruits.
  • ATHENS Georgia football graduate transfer Lawrence Cager is the first to admit it has been quite a transition these past few months of his life. 'Obviously, it's two different sides of the totem pole, Miami and Athens,' said Cager, a 6-foot-5, 220-pound receiver who led the Hurricanes in touchdown catches and yards per reception last season. RELATED: Fascinating story of how Lawrence Cager ended up at UGA 'But I love it here. It's a great place and the team welcomed me with open arms, (and) Coach Smart welcomed me with open arms. I'm just happy to be here.' It was a tough 2018 season for Miami under former coach Mark Richt, particularly with an unsettled quarterback situation. RELATED: Fire and Ice, Cager compares Mark Richt to Kirby Cager knew that coming to Georgia he wouldn't have that issue with third-year starting quarterback Jake Fromm under center. WATCH: Lawrence Cager remembers Kirby Smart recruiting call He also knew what he was getting in an offensive coordinator in recently promoted James Coley. Coley was Miami's offensive coordinator Cager's freshman year and recruited him to the Hurricanes. 'Honestly, I didn't even look at the receiver situation,' said Cager, who has been sharing first team reps in the WR rotation throughout fall camp. 'Coach Coley and Coach Smart called me as soon as I put my name in the portal.' Some thought Cager might declare himself eligible for the NFL draft. Cager is already on the Senior Bowl radar. But Cager decided a chance to win a championship at Georgia and showcase his abilities more was the better way to go. 'I put my trust in those guys 10 times out of 10,' Cager said. 'Coach Coley when he coached me at Miami, and Coach Smart recruiting me heavy when I was being recruited by Alabama, so I just trusted them and we'll see how it goes.' It is well documented that Georgia will be relying on new and inexperienced receivers this season. Two of the three Bulldogs' receivers drafted into the NFL were underclassmen, and then leading returning receiver Jeremiah Hollomon transferred to Florida International this summer. RELATED: Breaking down Georgia's 8 transfers this offseason Coley said earlier in fall camp that Cager has been a good fit for Georgia on and off the field. 'Just coming to work every day and enjoying the atmosphere of what we have and being positive with learning and the learning curve,' Coley said. 'The big thing that he brings, he brings experience. So where you sit back and you say, well, I wonder if this guy's going to make this play in a particular time'. 'Veteran guys, you've seen it happen and you know that they've been those spotlights.' And, Coley said, he knows what Cager will do out of the spotlight. 'Knowing him a little bit further, working with him for a full year,' Coley said, 'you knew what type of character kid he is.' Indeed, Cager has done his best to use his experience to help lead in the receivers room. Senior Tyler Simmons, with nine catches last season, is UGA's leading returning receiver. 'From a receiver room aspect, we came in with the mindset, myself, Tyler, all the receivers, especially me and Tyler being seniors , that it's on us,' Cager said. 'Whether it's making plays on the perimeter or special teams, a long as we have that mindset that it's on us and we come with that mindset that it's on us, then we can attack every day like it's a game.' Georgia football fall camp D'Andre Swift jersey watch in full effect Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof The post Georgia WR Lawrence Cager bought in, ready to attack every day' appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Georgia football players have put training camp behind them and are working on Vanderbilt, precisely how Kirby Smart had planned. The No. 3-ranked Bulldogs play at Vanderbilt at 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 31 in Nashville, their long-term goal a national championship, but the immediate focus on the Commodores. The good news at practice on Thursday was preseason All-American and Heisman Trophy candidate D'Andre Swift back in a red practice jersey. RELATED: Kirby Smart plays off D'Andre Swift jersey color This is where Smart would roll his eyes and tell the media that way too much is being made of what color jersey Swift is wearing in practices. But this is also where many Georgia fans, aware of Swift's injury history and his importance to the teams' title hopes, want to know more. Swift was nagged by injuries last season after undergoing sports hernia surgery in January of 2018. Swift was limited in spring drills, and then things got worse at South Carolina last season when Swift suffered a foot injury. Once healthy last season, Swift was seemingly unstoppable in November, averaging more than 9 yards per carry during a stretch of wins over Florida, Kentucky and Auburn. Georgia was arguably playing the best football in the nation last November, and many are expecting big things from Swift this season. So when Swift was late coming out for practice on Aug. 13, getting extra treatment on the heels of Scrimmage One, per NFL scouts, there were concerns. Had Swift aggravated the groin injury? Was it something else? Or, was it nothing. When Swift was back at practice later in the week, showing no-ill effects or wearing any added braces or tape, all seemed well. Then came Wednesday's practice this week, when Swift was in a black practice jersey. The non-contact jersey could have been as simple as making sure Swift didn't take any necessary hits in thud drills. But then, there might also have been more to the story and still might be as it has been a very physical fall camp and Swift saw hitting action in Scrimmage One like anyone else. Either way, Smart was saying when asked about Swift's non-contact jersey on Wednesday, playing off the question by claiming he was merely trying to distract the media. Speculation at this point isn't worth much, as even if Swift is nursing a bruised shoulder or sternum there's no reason to believe he couldn't be ready to play by Aug. 31. And, if for some reason the injury proves more serious, Georgia has tremendous talent and depth in the offensive backfield. Senior tailback Brian Herrien, who has been first through the drill work of late, was actually more effective running the ball in the Sugar Bowl than Swift. RELATED: Kirby Smart explains benefit of multiple 1,00o-yard rushers Further, sophomore James Cook has had a tremendous offseason of growth, drawing consistent praise from his hard-to-please head coach. Zamir White's comeback from ACL surgery last August has been well-documented, creating a sense of guarded optimism around the program that the No. 1 back in the 2018 signing class might indeed make a significant impact. Finally, incoming freshman tailback Kenny McIntosh has proven his skills, drawing praise from Smart after a strong Scrimmage Two performance. Other reported observations included Cade Mays continuing to work with the first-team offensive line, and inside linebacker Nakobe Dean (ankle) and Jamaree Salyer (lower leg) continue to be out of practice. Georgia football fall camp Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof The post Georgia football practice: D'Andre Swift jersey watch (red) in full effect appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Kirby Smart had his game face on following Wednesday's practice, at times, downright edgy. The fourth-year Georgia football coach is typically no-nonsense when it comes to media sessions, but there was an added edge with the season-opening game less than a week-and-a-half away. 'We weren't very good Tuesday but we had a better practice today,' Smart said. 'The leaders stepped up, challenged them to have a better practice. I thought they had a better practice today.' Good thing, because positions remain up for grabs at most every spot on the team, it seems. Smart elaborated on several position battles, some more unexpected than others, such as in the secondary where Eric Stokes has yet to lockdown a starting job. 'He (Stokes) is in competition right now, there are four guys out there at corner who are competing and he knows that he has top step up and play well every day because you're only judged based on your last play,' Smart said. 'He's challenging for one of those starting positions.' Sophomore Tyson Campbell has been running opposite Stokes with the Ones. Freshman Tyrique Stevenson has been nicked up but he's one of the other corners pushing for playing time, along with junior college transfer D.J. Daniel. The 'star' position the fifth defensive back is another heated competition between Mark Webb and Divaad Wilson. 'They've both done a good job, they're both competitive, both of those kids probably deserve to play,' Smart said. 'They've worked really hard, and they're different. They're similar, they're similar in body types, they're physical, but they're different and they've both done a good job. 'We hope to be able to keep guys fresh and play the best guy. Sometimes you've got to go with the hot hand and sometimes you've got to go with the guy who had the best week of practice.' Smart said Tyrique McGhee, who played the Star last season, is playing more corner because the Bulldogs want to go bigger and more physical at the position. 'I expect Tyrique to play a lot, but Tyrique is a very dominant special teams player who can play strong safety, free safety, star, money, and corner, very unique player,' Smart said. 'A utility guy who can play a little bit of everything and we expect him to do that and he's in competition to get playing time at, really, all positions. 'He really hasn't played much star because we've got those other guys reps.' Georgia football coach Kirby Smart Kirby Smart talks up 'everyday' competition Versatile Cade Mays elevating his game, puts rough recruitment behind New DC Dan Lanning impressing early in fall camp Kenny McIntosh stands out in Scrimmage Two Kirby Smart breaks down 'spirited' Scrimmage Two Georgia football injury updates, post-Scrimmage Two Could RB James Cook be biggest UGA surprise? J.R. Reed says Havoc Rate is out the roof Leave a Comment The post Edgy Georgia football coach Kirby Smart breaks down cornerback battles appeared first on DawgNation.