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Georgia junior cornerback D.J. Daniel took a longer road to play for his home state
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Georgia junior cornerback D.J. Daniel took a longer road to play for his home state

Georgia junior cornerback D.J. Daniel took a longer road to play for his home state

Georgia junior cornerback D.J. Daniel took a longer road to play for his home state

EDITOR's NOTE: This original D.J. Daniel profile 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.

D.J. Daniel has a longer homegrown story than most when it comes to playing for Georgia.

The 4-star CB grew up in Griffin and played for Nick Davis at Spalding High School. He told DawgNation that UGA would have been his choice coming out of high school.

But he wasn't academically eligible to sign with the Bulldogs after his senior year. It meant he had to take the junior college route to SEC football. Daniel did so at Georgia Military College.

It means he has two Georgia towns to look back on that helped him to where he is today.

Daniel rated as the nation's No. 2 junior college cornerback prospect in the 2020 cycle. That status also slotted him as No. 6 overall junior college recruit in the country last year.

When it came time for his decision last August, he surprised many when he chose South Carolina.

It did not last. He flipped his choice from South Carolina to Georgia in November.Nick Davis, his former high school coach at Spalding, gave DawgNation a pretty good breakdown of why that happened.

"D.J. grew up as a Georgia fan, and stated on numerous occasions that that's where he wanted to go to college," Davis said this summer. "I think when D.J. went to GMC, (South Carolina coach Will Muschamp) and his staff did a good job of recruiting him, and they had other players (at GMC) commit to South Carolina. Those relationships, and the fact that South Carolina was his first offer, I think D.J. kind of fell in love with that."

"But at the end of the day, when he visited Georgia again, he remembered that he had envisioned being in that uniform for his whole life. That's hard to deny, especially if the opportunity is there. I know that's where his family really wanted him to go. He battled with that decision, and ultimately he followed his heart."

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Georgia junior cornerback D.J. Daniel took a longer road to play for his home state

Good start so far for D.J. Daniel at UGA

Daniel is a physical corner with good speed and athleticism. He is strong in press coverage because he has the length and skills to do so. He'll just need to learn how to play off-the-ball and in a zone concept.

When he puts his foot down and takes off, he can go. No coach anywhere can teach that. He was hand-time at 4.40 and 4.42 seconds in the 40 at Georgia Military last summer.

The 6-foot, 185-pound junior quickly showed what he could do at the JUCO level. He basically had to.

Daniel was thrust into action in his first JUCO contest as a true freshman. By that point, he had already flashed enough ability to rotate in as the team's third-best corner heading into his freshman season.

Then his Game 1 baptism happened.GMC saw both of its starting cornerbacks go down in the season opener with dislocated elbows. Daniel received a true in-game promotion to the first team.

"We lost both of them by the midpoint of the first quarter of the first game," GMC coach Bert Williams said. "So (D.J.) had to start from then on after being in the second rotation to begin the year. We were down to three corners and thin there for a long time. D.J. just had to step in and reallycompete his butt off. He did."

He quickly earned major offers once South Carolina's defensive coordinator Travaris Robinson saw him move in the spring after that first season. He also had some very good film. The way the Griffin native covered ground cinched it.

Daniel has the benefit of signing early with UGA in December. It allowed him to participate in bowl practices. Georgia coach Kirby Smart said that provided a benefit.

The young man went from covering JUCO receivers to the three guys the Bulldogs saw drafted by the NFL this year.

"What's good about the corner position is we've got some guys coming along," Smart said. "D.J. Daniel, which we knew in bowl practice that he was going to be a good player because he was covering the likes of the ones who were at the combine. So we knew we had a pretty good player with D.J."

The former GMC Bulldog is now expected to contend for major reps this fall.

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Georgia junior cornerback D.J. Daniel took a longer road to play for his home state

D.J. Daniel already has a big play inside Sanford Stadium

Daniel broke up a pass on the final play for his Red team at G-Day back in April. That secured the victory for his side of the split-squad scrimmage.

It served notice that his name could also be on that list of expected impact newcomers this fall.

"If you know D.J., he definitely feels like he belongs," Davis told DawgNation this summer. "He will be highly-disappointed if he doesn't come out of camp as one of the top two guys. That's what he has his heart set on. I know he's going to accomplish that, barring any injuries. That's just his confidence and competitive nature, not arrogance."

The Bulldogs have not signed too many junior college players in the Kirby Smart era. He is a rare exception along with 4-star OLB Jermaine Johnson and DT Tramel Walthour in the 2019 class. As it turns out, new defensive coordinator Dan Lanning was a central figure in the recruitment of both of those Bulldogs out of the JUCO ranks.

Williams said Georgia told him it did not plan to take a JUCO cornerback in the last cycle. Maybe not until they saw Daniel put his foot in the ground and go, too.

"From my understanding, they really weren't looking for a junior college corner because of what they already have on the field," Williams said last summer. "But they were so impressed with what he can do after they saw him they pulled the trigger on him."

Deandre Baker was set to run out of eligibility last season. He did so after taking home the program's first Jim Thorpe Award. The Bulldogs would like to see Daniel shadow receivers pretty close to the way he did.

The learning curve won't be so steep given their age and playing experience beyond varsity football.

"They tell me that because they are looking at a JUCO corner then they want me to play now," Daniel said last summer. "If they were to sign a freshman, they know they can have him for three or four years and give him time to develop. When they recruit a JUCO guy like me, then they expect me to be able to play right away."

Georgia made it clear they wanted him to come in and earn key SEC reps quickly.

"They tell me I'm not just a want for them," he continued on. "They say I am a need' and the coaches at Georgia have told me they would not recruit a junior college corner if he could not play right away. I hear them say that and I feel it, too."

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Georgia junior cornerback D.J. Daniel took a longer road to play for his home state

Why D.J. Daniel is driven to excel at UGA

Daniel wants to take care of his mother. That's a common thread among college players. But his junior college path has ensured he will do whatever it takes to make it to Sundays.

That was evident through two days in his life coming up. The first was when he sat down with Davis and it became clear he wasn't going to go to college right out of high school.

His mother Amanda Mangham was there that day.

"We sat down and had a talk with Coach Davis," Daniel said last year. "He was just telling my mom we had to go the JUCO route. He said we still have a chance, but that was what we had to do. That was the day where I can say that we were all the most down. My mom was crying. She was disappointed in me. I knew I was better than that."

"I told myself that my hunger for the game had to go up even more. All that I ever want is for my mother to smile. She doesn't care what I do as long as I am successful at what I do. She just wants me to give it my all and to the best of my ability. I wasn't doing that in the classroom and earning my chance to play college football."

Fast forward two years later. Mangham was also there when the head coach of the defending SEC Champions extended the offer he used to dream about.

"What do I think was my happiest day over the last two years?" Daniel said last spring. "I think that was just getting the Georgia offer. That was when I saw my mom when it looked like she was the happiest. Don't get me wrong. She was really happy after all of my offers, but I think that me getting that Georgia offer really made her proud. It really made her proud."

He said he hadn't seen his mother that happy for him since the day he graduated from Spalding in 2017.

Daniel earned that offer after an on-campus workout in Athens. He felt he might have had an offer prior to his unofficial visit last June. But then he got an "official" offer from Smart.

"I met him before the camp that day started and he said that he had watched my film," Daniel said back in June of 2018. "He said he loved what I do. My long arms. Press coverage. I saw him after the camp and he told me that I had an offer here at Georgia' and when he told me that, it really took my breath away. It did. Man, I'm just going to stay humble through this process. .. But [that one] took my breath."

Daniel now has the chance to take DawgNation's breath away playing for the home state school. If he does, that will make it even sweeter doing it for the school he dreamed about growing up.

The post Georgia junior cornerback D.J. Daniel took a longer road to play for his home state appeared first on DawgNation.

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  • The University of Georgia announced Thursday that Maymester and Summer classes at all University System of Georgia institutions will be offered in an online format, with “limited exceptions.” The announcement from UGA President Jere W. Morehead was sent via Arch News to faculty, staff and students. According to the email, USG Chancellor Steve Wrigley said all USG institutions will open again for in-person instruction for the fall semester “assuming health conditions permit.”From UGA President Jere W. Morehead via Arch News “Thank you for your dedicated efforts to implement and participate in online instruction as we advance toward the completion of Spring Semester. I have been advised this morning by the University System of Georgia that instruction at all USG institutions will continue to be offered in a remote format, with only limited exceptions, through the summer term.   For UGA, this means that our Maymester and Summer Semester course offerings will be online. Any unit that wishes to seek an exception should contact their Dean or Vice President for appropriate review, which ultimately will require USG approval.  According to USG Chancellor Steve Wrigley, all institutions will return to normal operations for Fall Semester, assuming health conditions permit. For the immediate future, however, we are to continue our current telework and flexible work strategies to minimize the number of individuals who remain on campus to maintain operations and support remote instruction.  I realize the extraordinary demands that this pandemic places on everyone and thank you for your resilience and determination. Like you, I eagerly await the time when we can return to campus and regain some sense of normalcy. Until then, we must all do our part to maintain social distancing in order to stay safe and healthy. Together, we will persevere through these challenging times.”
  • Georgia’s fruit and vegetable farmers are bracing for what could be a very tough season---that that has nothing to do with the weather. Channel 2′s Berndt Petersen talked to one of the metro’s largest strawberry growers, who says some of the crop may die on the vine. In seven to ten days, the strawberries at commercial farms all over Georgia will be ripe, but in many cases, there won’t be enough workers to pick them. They may not look like it--but, but the first crop of strawberries at Jaemor Farms in Hall County will soon be ready. This is the point where a farmer usually worries about a freeze, maybe too much rain or low prices. 'Never in a million years did I think I’d be worrying about a virus, messing with a crop I’m so close to bringing in,' Drew Echols, with Jaemor Farms, said. Echols said it has caused serious concerns, starting with his seasonal workers from Mexico. He needs 13, but it looks like he'll only get nine. 'You've got people who had Visas for 10 years in a row. They're watching the news every day and they're scared. They don't want to come here,” Echols said. Echols said some of his biggest customers are the schools and restaurants. With the schools shut down, and restaurants either closed or reduced to carry out, demand has hit the floor. While grocery stores are busy, customers are going shopping less often. Produce is perishable. And they're not buying nearly as much. Echols said all across Georgia, a lot of fruit and vegetables may rot in the fields, partly because there aren't enough workers to pick it, and partly because consumers stuck at home aren't buying. He said some growers may not plant as much, for fear they won't be able to sell it, but Echols has reached the point of no return. “We’re treating every single day like we’ll sell the whole crop. I have to. Until I get to that point, we’re not taking the foot off the gas --let- let’s put it like that,” Echols said.
  • There were two big announcements from Governor Brian Kemp Wednesday: he’s closing all public schools for the rest of the school year, and he is issuing a statewide shelter in place order. Both measures are aimed at slowing the spread of coronavirus in Georgia. From the Clarke Co School District… Wednesday, April 1, 2020, Gov. Brian Kemp announced during a press conference that K-12 public schools will close for in-person classes for the rest of the school year. 'I want to stress that online learning will continue,' Kemp said at a press conference. 'I want to thank all of the educators and superintendents that have stayed in touch with us through this process to make the best of a tough situation. We will continue to work with them on the path forward.' Message from Dr. Xernona Thomas, Interim Superintendent I recognize how challenging the past weeks have been – the COVID-19 pandemic is forcing all of us to make adjustments every day. We are working on how to address the many issues we face due to Governor Kemp’s mandate to close school through the end of the year. Please be patient as we receive new updates and guidance from the Georgia Department of Education and local, state, and national agencies.
  • The University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government is quickly moving some popular education programs online so that state and local officials don’t fall behind during the coronavirus pandemic. Vinson faculty members offered their first online class in the Certified Public Manager program on March 19. All 31 participants that are enrolled in the current program, which began in August, participated. Students in the current CPM program have been meeting since August so it’s important for classes to continue uninterrupted, according to participant Tracy Mason. “It was good for the institute to have a plan and be able to deploy that videoconferencing program so fast,” said Mason, senior assistant director of the Judicial Council of Georgia/Administrative Office of the Courts. “I don’t feel that I would have preferred to wait until we could meet face-to-face again.” The CPM program provides professional education to managers throughout city, county and state government that helps them make fiscally and socially responsible decisions that benefit their communities. Having this kind of education will be even more important now as Georgia’s cities and counties deal with the impact from the novel coronavirus. This program, like most of the Vinson Institute’s certification programs, is offered through a series of courses that build upon each other over a period of months. It would be a setback for participants if there was a long delay between classes. The institute already had been moving some of its classroom courses online, which would increase accessibility for government officials spread throughout the state. But the virus, and subsequent statewide restrictions on gatherings in groups, made the changes more critical, said Tracy Arner, financial management program manager at the Vinson Institute. “It’s shaping, really moment by moment, how we’re delivering services,” Arner said. Vinson faculty used Blackboard Collaborative Ultra to videoconference the March 19 CPM class on budgeting. Through that platform, class participants could raise a virtual hand if they had a question, gather into small discussion groups, and “talk” back and forth with the instructor and among themselves. “The class itself went on without missing a beat,” said participant Trey Wood, Jackson County finance director. “Once everybody got comfortable and started communicating back and forth, it was easy to stay engaged.” Even though they weren’t in a room together, participant Niki Lemeska said the interaction via video kept the class on track. “It allows you to feel like you’re picking up on the vibe of what’s going on in the classroom even though you’re not seeing your classmates live,” said Lemeska, program manager with the Georgia Commission on Family Violence. Vinson already offered online learning, with standalone courses and webinars, said Laura Meadows, director of the Carl Vinson Institute of Government. “What’s new is we’re now providing live online instruction for courses we have previously delivered face-to-face,” Meadows said. Another Institute of Government course, the North Atlanta Regional Management Development Program, was taught online using Zoom on March 25. Participant John “Kevin” Norred, deputy chief of the Troup County Fire Department in LaGrange, found the process unusual but fulfilling. “I really thought I would be working today with this Zoom thing going ‘wah, wah, wah’ in the background,” Norred said. “But I found myself engrossed and engaged just like in class. I just don’t have to drive home.” While many classes are being adapted for videoconferencing, the institute will continue to offer webinars and self-study online classes for government officials throughout Georgia. Many are certified by the Georgia Department of Revenue, allowing local tax officials to earn continuing education credit. Others allow local and state leaders to work toward or maintain certification. You can find available classes at https://t.uga.edu/5M0.
  • Athens-Clarke County Police says gunshots were fired into three cars parked at the Coleridge Court apartments off Gaines School road on Athens’ east side. There were no injuries reported. The search for shooting suspects is ongoing.  Athens-Clarke County Police say a string of east-side business burglaries continues, with two more restaurants hit, one on Barnett Shoals Road, the other on College station.  Athens-Clarke County Police report the arrest of 46 year-old Jeffrey Thompson: he’s facing charges after allegedly trying to break into cars at a residence off Oak Street in Athens. 

Bulldog News

  • DawgNation got to 'Zoom' with 2021 Georgia commitment David Daniel on Wednesday. The long-standing DB recruit for the 2021 class joined our weekly 'Before the Hedges' program on a zoom chat. The rising senior at Woodstock High School (Woodstock, Ga.) hails from South Florida but moved to the Metro Atlanta area for the bulk of his high school career. Daniel currently ranks as the nation's No. 4 ATH and the No. 78 overall prospect on the 247Sports Composite ratings. He will be a safety at UGA and plans to enroll early in January of 2021. The DawgNation reporting team had its questions for the feed. So did the DawgNation community who joined the stream live via Facebook. Check out the full video replay in the featured video slot up above. What did we discuss? Check out the topic tree below: What is it like for him during COVID-19 quarantine? Who are his top targets for the 2021 class? Why did he chose Georgia? Daniel discussed why he is still 'ten toes down' standing strong with his UGA commitment Are other schools still recruiting him hard? What does he plan to study while at UGA? What is it like having a former Georgia DB in Glenn Ford as his trainer? Which team does he look forward to playing the most as a Bulldog? How is he staying in shape right now? Did you know the weekly DawgNation.com 'Before the Hedges' program is now available as an Apple podcast? Click to check it out and download. BEFORE THE HEDGES ON YOUTUBE April 1, 2020: David Daniel is our special guest March 25, 2020: What UGA is getting in Jonathan Jefferson March 18, 2020: How COVID-19 is and isn't affecting Georgia recruiting March 11, 2020: Nation's No. 2 RB Treyveon Henderson calls UGA a top school March 4, 2020: Priority LB target Raineria Dillworth narrows options after UGA visit February 26, 2020: Nation's No. 2 LB recruit Smael Mondon Jr. loves UGA because of 'championships' DAWGNATION RECRUITING Georgia recruiting on DawgNation How elite OLB target Quintin Somerville tackles the COVID-19 quarantine COVID-19: How Kirby Smart sees that affecting Georgia recruiting The elite 2022 recruit who brings to mind Nick Chubb, Nolan Smith and Fred Sanford 5 things to know about recent 2021 commitment Jonathan Jefferson Nation's No. 1 CB Tony Grimes had three UGA visits set prior to COVID-19 outbreak Dylan Fairchild: The UGA offer for the elite OL was like 'drinking from a fire hydrant Elijah Jeudy: Has Georgia found another future Bulldog in Philadelphia? Pulling Bulldogs from the Bronx, Brooklyn and Jersey? HS coach raves about UGA Devin Willock: The 2020 signee and the surgical scooter which rolled him to UGA Georgia adds a key 2021 commit in Peach State product Jonathan Jefferson Amarius Mims: 5-star priority OT sets his commitment date Donovan Edwards: Priority 4-star RB feels UGA probably' gets an official visit The post David Daniel: 2021 UGA commit joined 'Before the Hedges' on Zoom appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS The best leaders and the most intelligent people are the ones who know what they don't know. Georgia football coach Kirby Smart a four-time member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll during his playing career served up a reminder of that when he deferred on speculating about college football's future. WATCH: Breaking down Kirby's spring football briefing 'I can't speculate on what I don't know, and we don't have a large amount of information right now,' Smart said. 'It's no fault of anybody. I'm not trying to point any blame, but we don't know a lot about the future and what that holds. 'I'm not going to sit back and say well this is what I think should be done, or this is what I think is going to happen, because I don't think that does anybody any good .' Smart did, however, feel comfortable enough to talk about his team. The 2020 Bulldogs are set up for an SEC Championship and College Football Playoff run on the strength of what on paper is the best returning defense in the nation. Georgia returns nine of 11 starters from its Sugar Bowl team, and Smart said there are rising sophomores and juniors that appear on the verge of breaking through even more. Here are three takeaways from Smart's teleconference with Georgia football beat writers earlier this week: 1. Priority on players Smart, like the CEOs of many of the nation's top organizations, has placed a priority on his personnel and ensuring their well-being ahed of any of the football business. Smart was quarantined himself after returning with his family from Central America at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic's severe effects on the U.S. society. It's clear he demands his players take the social distancing directives seriously. 'Th e No. 1 thing is the well-being of our players, their families, our student-athletes, our students at the University of Georgia,' Smart said. 'We're trying every way we can to make sure that they have everything they need because so many of them have parents in harm's way. 'They're in harm's way taking care of themselves if they don't respect what they're being told.' 2. Kirby's going to Kirby Thoroughness and efficiency are two of the traits that make Smart one of the best coaches in the nation, and he didn't take long to shift into that mode. Smart was among the first to push for videoconferencing, and that helped lead to the SEC approaching two hours of online 'chalk talk' between players and their coaches per week last Friday. The new measure took effect last Monday. 'In anticipation of doing it we were trying to get ready, we were practicing ourselves,' Smart said. 'A lot of these kids are better at these technological things than the coaches are, so we had to practice . to get ready so that we hit the ground running.' 3. Confident in quarterbacks Smart didn't exactly use the word 'comfortable' when asked about Jamie Newman. But he revealed the Georgia graduate transfer quarterback had found some 'rhythm' while throwing with receivers in limited work. Quarterbacks will be the position players most affected by the football stoppage, Smart said. But then he also revealed that Newman and the other UGA signal callers were able to at least get some familiarity with the offense. 'As far as the QB and the offense for our guys, I mean, we were able to meet leading up to spring practice,' Smart said. ' . we were able to have walkthroughs leading up to spring time, which we maximized that time. Not anticipating that we wouldn't have spring, but just knowing that we had new quarterbacks and due to the offensive systems we had to make sure we spent time with that. So we spent a lot of time on that.' DawgNation Kirby Smart offseason stories Kirby Smart reveals 5 players who impressed in workouts How CO-VID 19 is affecting Georgia football recruiting Why Kirby Smart gave Scott Cochran opportunity Nick Saban wouldn't Updates on rehab progress of Dominick Blaylock, D'Wan Mathis Smart boosts Dan Lanning over $1 million, new staff salary numbers Quarterbacks affected more than any position during stoppage, per Kirby Kirby Smart's sports stoppage message: Control what you can control D'Wan Mathis family thanks Kirby Smart, Georgia The post 3 takeaways from Georgia football coach Kirby Smart beat writer teleconference appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia football coach Kirby Smart covered a lot of ground in his teleconference with beat writers on Tuesday, leaving some room for speculation in key areas. Smart made sure everyone knew his top priority was taking care of the players, but he also shared some updates on transfer quarterback Jamie Newman and the rehab of receiver Dominick Blaylock and D'Wan Mathis. The Ingles on The Beat segment ran twice on Tuesday, both on Facebook live and on YouTube. Here's are the clips, including a Florida Gators fan crashing the party and getting a DawgNation lecture! Ingles on The Beat Facebook Live (Part One) Ingles on The Beat YouTube Live (Part Two) The post WATCH: Breaking down Kirby Smart's spring sports break briefing appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Kirby Smart is the first coach to tell anyone football is played in pads. But on Tuesday, the Georgia football head coach was in a giving mood. Giving, as in wanting to help the media tell the Bulldogs' fans what has been going on with the football team during this unprecedented COVID-19-related sports stoppage. So, who looked good during the offseason workouts before UGA went on spring break and the NCAA ordered a suspension of activities back on March 12? 'A lot of football is built off pads, we didn't get to do that,' Smart said. 'We did get to do offseason running, and movement and agility. There's a ton of that sophomore and junior group that's waiting to jump up and make that impact.' Smart said he does 'hate to single one guy out, but there are guys that are working really hard.' So . ? 'I thought that George (Pickens) was competing really hard and doing good things in the workouts,' Smart said. 'He really liked the competitive side of things.' Pickens is coming off a Sugar Bowl MVP performance. Pickens will be a key to the scheme new offensive coordinator Todd Monken is building. ' Clay Webb was a guy who was really competing hard,' Smart said, an indication of the battle shaping up on the interior offensive line. 'He did some good things.' Smart also mentioned returning senior offensive guard Justin Shaffer, a 6-foot-4, 330-pounder. Shaffer started after Solomon Kindley went down with an ankle injury against Notre Dame. He seemed entrenched before suffering a season-ending neck injury and missing the final eight games of the season. 'Shaffer's coming back off of injury,' Smart said. 'Not that he was an outstanding performer, but considering that he wasn't able to do anything for six to eight weeks, and now he's coming out there competing and pushing through adversity. I was really proud of the way he worked. And he tried to lead.' Fans already know there's going to be a lot of competition at running back, and Smart added fuel to the fire. ' James Cook, I mean, we had competition daily to see who was going to win individual battles, and James probably had the largest winning percentages,' Smart said. 'He and Zamir (are) really challenging each other and competing really hard. 'Those guys can continue to grow' It remains to be seen how players will stay in shape during the break. But the head coach has certainly taken note of a few, and now the Georgia DawgNation fans will, too. One takeaway: All of the players Smart mentioned were on offense. It's pretty clear the head coach is going to make sure the Georgia defense, which returns 9 of 11 starters from its Sugar Bowl team, does not get complacent. DawgNation Kirby Smart offseason stories How CO-VID 19 is affecting Georgia football recruiting Why Kirby Smart gave Scott Cochran opportunity Nick Saban wouldn't Smart boosts Dan Lanning over $1 million, new staff salary numbers Quarterbacks affected more than any position during stoppage, per Kirby Kirby Smart's sports stoppage message: Control what you can control The post Kirby Smart reveals 5 Georgia football players who impressed during offseason workouts appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Dan Lanning has become the highest paid assistant on the Georgia football staff after the Bulldogs led the nation in scoring defense and rushing defense last season. Georgia did so despite not having a defensive player selected first-team All-SEC unity, according to an Associated Press panel. RELATED: League-leading Georgia defense shut out on AP All-SEC first team Lanning, 33, had his salary elevated from $750,000 in 2019 to $1.25 million for this upcoming season, per UGA athletic director Greg McGarity. In addition to coordinating the nation's No. 3-ranked total defense, Lanning coached up FWAA Freshman of the Year Semifinalist Azeez Ojulari at outside linebacker. He also landed the nation's No. 1 recruit, outside linebacker Nolan Smith, along with the No. 1 JUCO recruit, outside linebacker Jermaine Johnson. Lanning was making just $325,000 in 2018 before he was promoted from within the staff to replace Mel Tucker after Tucker left to become the Colorado head football coach. OPINION: Dan Lanning promotion to defensive coordinator a promising hire Georgia head coach Kirby Smart maintains a large presence on the Bulldogs' defense, staying involved with coaching the secondary and working in concert with Lanning on play calls. It's clear Smart has a chemistry with the rising coaching star; the two worked together at Alabama prior to Georgia. Lanning coached the Memphis inside linebackers and was the Tigers' recruiting coordinator in 2016 and 2017 before joining the Bulldogs' staff. Prior to the Memphis job, Lanning served as a graduate assistant in 2015 on an Alabama coaching staff that featured Smart as the defensive coordinator and Tucker as the secondary coach. Defensive line coach Tray Scott also received a noteworthy raise, from $470,000 to $600,000, per salary numbers that first appeared in the Athens Banner-Herald. The raise was likely on the strength of the Bulldogs leading the nation in rushing defense as well as the performance of young players. WATCH: Dan Lanning discusses Georgia 'No-Name' Defense before Sugar Bowl Scott is one of only three assistant coaches who remain from Smart's original staff in 2017, along with running backs coach Dell McGee and inside linebackers coach Glenn Schumann. Todd Monken is the highest paid offensive assistant. Monken was hired in making $1.1 million as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, essentially replacing James Coley. McGarity told DawgNation on Tuesday night that all of the salaries (listed below) involving raises were negotiated before the coronavirus pandemic brought the sports world to a standstill and affected the global economy. Georgia Football Salaries 2020 ( 7.2 million) Dan Lanning: Defensive Coordinator / OLB Coach $1.25 million Todd Monken:, Offensive Coordinator / QB coach $1.1 million Matt Luke: Offensive Line / Assoc. Head coach $900,000 Dell McGee: RB coach / Run game coord. $650,000 Charlton Warren: secondary coach $600,000 Glenn Schumann: Asst. DC / Inside linebackers $600,000 Tray Scott: defensive line coach $600,000 Cortez Hankfton: WR coach $550,000 Scott Cochran: Special teams coordinator $550,000 Todd Hartley, TE coach $400,000 2019 staff: 6.045 million James Coley: Offensive Coordinator / QB Coach $950,000 Sam Pittman: Associate Head Coach / OL Coach $900,000 Dan Lanning: Defensive Coordinator / OLB Coach $750,000 Dell McGee: Run Game Coordinator / RB Coach $650,000 Charlton Warren: DB Coach $600,000 Cortez Hankton: Pass Game Coordinator / WR Coach $550,000 Glenn Schumann: Co-Defensive Coordinator / ILB Coach $550,000 Tray Scott: DL Coach $470,000 Scott Fountain: Special Teams Coordinator $325,000 T odd Hartley: TE Coach $300,000 2018 staff: $6.42 million Mel Tucker: Defensive coordinator / secondary $1,500,000 Jim Chaney Offensive coordinator / tight ends $950,000 James Coley Quarterbacks / Co-offensive coord. $850,000 Sam Pittman, Offensive line $825,000 Dell McGee, Running backs $550,000 Tray Scott, Defensive line $420,000 Cortez Hankton, Wide receivers $375,000 Glenn Schumann, Inside linebackers $325,000 Dan Lanning, Outside linebackers $325,000 Scott Fountain, Special teams $300,000 2017 staff: $4.56 million Mel Tucker: Defensive coordinator / secondary $900,000 (Now at Michigan State Jim Chaney: Offensive coordinator / quarterbacks $850,000 (Now at Tennessee) Sam Pittman: Offensive line $660,000 (Now at Arkansas) James Coley: Receivers $450,000 (Now at Texas A&M) Tray Scott: Defensive line $400,000 Kevin Sherrer: Linebackers $375,000 (Now with N.Y. Giants) Dell McGee: Running backs $350,000 Shane Beamer: Tight ends, $300,000 (Now at Oklahoma) Glenn Schumann: Inside linebackers $275,000 The post Rising coaching star Dan Lanning becomes Georgia football's highest paid assistant appeared first on DawgNation.