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Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Practice Notes: Pugh Better, King Not

After two radio interviews, Mark Richt's morning news conference, player interviews in the afternoon, writing two blog posts, a notebook and feature for tomorrow's paper and doing more interviews tonight, I simply don't have the energy for any more quote transcribing (though if someone would like to work as my transcription assistant, there's a six pack of Milwaukee's Best in it for you). So, just a few brief details from tonight's practice...

-- Makiri Pugh returned to practice for the first time today since being diagnosed with swine flu last Thursday. Mark Richt said no other players showed symptoms, and Pugh said he's feeling 100 percent now and expects to play Saturday.

-- Richt heavily endorsed the notion that Caleb King will play this week during his morning session with media, but Mike Bobo put a damper on that prognosis tonight. He said Caleb wore a green non-contact jersey in practice and was very limited once again.

-- Bobo said Vince Vance graded out pretty well in his approximately 25 snaps on the O line Saturday and will continue to be the left tackle for the foreseeable future.

-- Marlon Brown confirmed what Michael Moore told me Sunday: Tony Ball said he simply didn't realize Brown and Rantavious Wooten hadn't played against Oklahoma State.

“He said the game was moving so fast and he was trying to find out what plays worked and what didn’t work, and he said he just forgot, it slipped his mind,” Brown said.

-- Reshad Jones said coaches told him his hit that drew a flag in the second half Saturday was not a penalty after watching the film closer. He also got a text immediately after the game from last year's starting safety, CJ Byrd, saying "Nice hit."

-- I got some clarification from Willie Martinez on what happened on the fourth down play with the disputed spot. He said that Georgia could have challenged the play, but chose not to rather than risk losing a timeout. The refs could have chosen to review it since it was so close, but they also decided against it. Here's the exact quote:

"The game was going so fast, and obviously they review every play," Martinez said. "You're always careful -- it's Coach Richt's call -- but you're always careful with losing a timeout in a tight ballgame. You just hope that it was close enough for them to review it, but obviously it wasn't."

-- I didn't get a chance to talk to Logan Gray, but Anthony Dasher from Rivals writes that up until Saturday morning, Gray thought he was going to be the starter against Oklahoma State with Joe Cox experiencing flu symptoms. (Note: Subscription only.)

I did talk to Aaron Murray, and he said he was a bit more confident that Cox would be in the lineup.

"I was preparing, but we knew pretty well that Joe would be back and make the start," Murray said. "But I go into every game preparing in case something happens because it builds good habits, watching film and preparing as if I were the starter."

-- Also, I forgot to include this quote from Richt's morning presser in my earlier post, but for all you folks who hate the directional kicking, I figured you'd really enjoy Richt's synopsis of the South Carolina game: "As I look at this game I’m seeing two defenses that played pretty darn good and two offenses that are trying to find their way. More than likely the special teams will be the deciding factor in this one."

-- And for those of you craving post-practice info, here's the official UGA release...

The No. 21-ranked Georgia Bulldogs (0-1) practiced for approximately two and a half hours in full pads on Tuesday afternoon in preparation for this Saturday's Southeastern Conference opener against South Carolina (1-0) at Sanford Stadium.

"Practice was long and hard," said head coach Mark Richt. "They hung in there and fought through it pretty good."

At the beginning of practice, Richt announced the captains for this weekend's contest as Rennie Curran and Kade Weston for the defense, Joe Cox for the offense and Prince Miller for the special teams.

Richt also met with the media Tuesday afternoon for the Bulldogs' weekly press conference. There he discussed the matchup with South Carolina at length.

"They are really an outstanding football team," Richt said. "As I look at this game I’m seeing two defenses that played pretty darn good and two offenses that are trying to find their way. More than likely the special teams will be the deciding factor in this one. As we know, it’s a team that we have always had great battles with and very, very close games. We have won six of the last eight and just about every time we play, the score is within a touchdown. Rarely has anybody scored more than 20 points on either side. The way it’s shaping up, it looks like another one of those, quite frankly.

"We’ll play it with a lot of energy and enthusiasm," Richt continued. "I know it will be exciting to be home for our players. We are looking forward to our Dog Walk and getting the guys excited about the game. The night atmosphere certainly adds to the atmosphere. It’s the first Southeastern Conference game. The SEC has begun and we are looking to go 1-0.”


Anonymous said...


Weren't you saying before that you were hearing King might miss this game also? Sounds like you may be proven right.

EmotionalFescue said...

Hey David - I have a question for you for the players. In 2007 - Superman was the unofficial song of the season. Last season it seemed for a bit that Put On was that song. Can you poll the players and see if there are any unofficial team songs for the 2009 season? Thanks!

hinesacl said...

Maybe the song will be "Love Will Keep Us Together"?

Hey and here is a link to a bunch of songs about "Leadership"!

WOOHOO! Leadership!

Anonymous said...

"More than likely the special teams will be the deciding factor in this one." -CMR

-Oh, God.

Can someone please pass this quote on to Coach Fab?

...and Branden Smith.

JRL said...

Am I overreacting or missing something here?

We have the head coach saying one thing (King will play) and the OC saying something totally different. Then we have TB saying he didn't realize two players didn't play because the game was moving fast - WTF.

Do these guys communicate - are they all on the same page?

Silver Dawg said...

The speed of the college game has increased exponentially over the last decade or so. That said, it is essential to make reasoned judgements quickly, weighing prioritized factors of moment, personnel, and on and on. Have we come to a Peter Principle Moment for certain coaches on the staff? The more I digest their quotes from last Saturday, the more I am convinced that certain coaches are suffering from Mr. Peter's Principle or that pre-game meetings consist of passing the bong.

Anonymous said...

Tony Ball's comment scares me the most. He was too busy trying to figure out what worked and didn't work??? Are you kidding me???

strick9 said...

WOW! UGA has some incompetent coaches. Sorry MB and RW, you were going to play, but i just forgot about you. Unbelievable. Does anybody see where this could hurt recruiting?

Jason said...

I have a really hard time accepting the fact that a position coach didn't realize that two of his players expected to contribute did not get in the game. That does not speak well to the communication procedures and pre-game plans while also bringing back bad memories to past sideline/in-game issues that this coaching staff has encountered.

I certainly hope that there is a plan in place to ensure this doesn't repeat itself.

Travis said...

This can't be acceptable for a coach to simply forget about implementing 2 players. I'm sorry, but we had better hear something from CMR on this topic. I'm all for helping people get started, get their foot in the door and helping alumni. However, if this is the case, this isn't acceptable.