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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Thursday Practice Notes -- Little Leaving

Georgia offensive lineman Chris Little was already lost for the year with a broken foot, but head coach Mark Richt announced Thursday the former Twiggs County player was leaving the school for good.

Richt said Little informed him earlier in the week of his desire to transfer and said the redshirt freshman had been given a release to transfer to another school.

"He just felt like it was time to move on," Richt said. "It wasn't working out as well as he wanted it to. He wanted to move in another direction."

Little broke his foot in August, but was already buried deep on Georgia's offensive line depth chart. With all five starters on the current Bulldogs line, it wasn't likely Little would break into the starting lineup next season.

"It's just a situation of wanting to get a fresh start I think," Richt said. "I talked to him and his father about it, and we'll help him find a place if he needs help, but I think he's already got that ball rolling a little."

Richt said there were no off-field incidents that led to Little's decision, which comes just two weeks after the coach announced wide receiver Walter Hill and defensive back Donavon Baldwin had both left the program following violations of team rules.

Richt said no final decisions had been made by Hill or Baldwin on where they would transfer.

"I know Coach (Rodney) Garner was helping Donavon, and I've heard a couple of rumors as to where Walter is interested, but I don't want to cause anything without knowing for sure," Richt said.


Richt said Thursday redshirt freshman tight end Aron White would not make the trip with the team to LSU and said he was still unsure about the status of tight end Tripp Chandler. Both players are rehabbing shoulder injuries.

Chandler hurt his shoulder against Alabama last month and has missed the past two games. White sprained his shoulder during practice Tuesday. He started against Tennessee and saw significant playing time in Chandler's absence last week.

That leaves Bruce Figgins who will need surgery on his shoulder at season's end as the only healthy tight end. Richt said Brannan Southerland and Kiante Tripp could see some snaps at the position.

White is one of more than a dozen Bulldogs to have both started a game and missed a game due to injury this season, and several other part-time players have also suffered significant injuries.

"If you start feeling sorry for yourself, it just never does you any good," Richt said. "But it has gotten to the point where it is about time to start counting it up and seeing where we are, and I wouldn't even know how to compare it to another year."


While the list of injured Bulldogs continues to mount, even Georgia's recruits are falling victim to the injury bug.

Quarterback Aaron Murray, Georgia's most high profile recruit, broke his leg in a game last week and will miss the remainder of the season.

While NCAA rules prevent Richt from discussing individual recruits, he said the school has a policy of following through on any offers they make to players, even if an injury keeps them off the field.

"We have never reneged a scholarship because a guy got hurt," Richt said. "I tell them, once you commit to me, we're committed to you as long as you do everything you're supposed to do between now and then. You have to have the academics and you have to behave, but other than that, you're ours and we're going to take care of you."

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