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Monday, December 13, 2010

To leave or stay? What UGA juniors may decide

For a team that’s coming off a pretty average year, and that may be putting it kindly, Georgia has a lot of underclassmen looking at the NFL. But hey, that’s the way of the world.

About a half-dozen juniors who may be contemplating the jump met recently with Atlanta Falcons president Rich McKay, in a standard information-sharing session. Most of those players have or will send their names to the NFL draft advisory board, with the exception of A.J. Green, who doesn’t need anybody to advise him he’ll go very, very early.

Keep in mind, the fact that all these guys are examining their options doesn’t mean there will be a mass exodus. Due diligence is a good thing, and since there’s no drawback to getting feedback from the NFL, why not? Still, Georgia fans have seen plenty of players jump early when it wasn’t expected, so every situation bears watching.

Forthwith, here’s a list of each player contemplating the jump, along with the percentage chances they will leave. (I will freely admit I’m stealing the idea from my friend Gentry Estes at Good ideas are worth stealing.) The higher the percentage, the more chance they’ll be turning pro.

A.J. Green, junior WR
97 percent.
Some would postulate that this decision was made three years ago. I’ll take Green at his word that he was still unsure – especially when he tweeted as such a few weeks ago as he was hitting the McDonald’s drive-thru. In this day and age, if you can’t believe someone tweeting while they’re going thru the McDonald’s drive-thru, really, who can you believe?

Still, Green all but announced last week that he was gone. Throughout the year he had said a lockout could be a big factor in keeping him in school, but after the meeting with McKay, Green said he didn’t think there would be a lockout anymore and it wouldn’t figure into his decision.

So, barring a huge last minute change of heart, what was generally assumed will soon become official.

Justin Houston, junior LB-DE
75 percent

While Green has been fairly open about discussing his future, Houston has declined to get into it. Mark Richt has talked more about it, lobbying publicly after the Georgia Tech game for Houston to come back and improve his stock to high first-round status.

But Houston may already be in first round territory, and with a good combine could elevate himself. After all, he’s an All-American and the SEC sacks leader. Perhaps most importantly, he’s a fourth-year junior, so you could forgive him for being ready to go.

My sense is Houston will leave unless a) the NFL tells him he’s not a likely first-rounder, and b) his coaches and teammates put on the full-court press and guilt him into giving it one more year. But both of those things have to happen.

Brandon Boykin, junior CB-KR
30 percent

Let’s face it, Boykin didn’t have a great junior year, so his stock probably dropped. But his kick returning skills would almost certainly earn him a roster spot, no matter where he’s drafted.

Boykin seems to be leaning towards staying – last week he joked, via Twitter, about starting a Heisman campaign for next year. When I pressed him on it, asking if that was a declaration he was returning, he said, “time will tell ... Mr. Blog Man.”

(On a side note, it’s good to know that all those years at journalism school, the Washington Post, and shoe-leather reporting have led to my simply being called “Mr. Blog Man.”)

Boykin seems to have a good head on his shoulders, so if he doesn’t get a high draft rating, there’s a good chance he’s back. And hopefully he breaks the news by telling Mr. Blog Man.

Cordy Glenn, junior G
40 percent

There almost always seems to be a below-the-radar guy who leaves after no one talks about him, and I’ve thought for awhile Glenn could be the guy. When he was asked about it last month, he gave the ol’ not-thinking-about-it-till-after-the-season response. That usually means, “Yeah I’m thinking about it. Hard.”

Glenn was the top-ranked guard on Mel Kiper’s list of draft-eligible underclassmen. So he seems likely to get picked if he leaves. It’ll probably depend on what kind of grade he gets.

Blair Walsh, junior K
10 percent

Yeah, kickers hardly ever leave early, and Walsh himself almost laughed off the notion. But for what it’s worth, he was in that meeting with McKay, so he was at least keeping his options open.

Drew Butler, junior P
5 percent

Butler is basically in the same situation as Walsh. Neither will improve their stock much by coming back, since kickers and punters don’t get picked high. But that’s also another reason to come back for another year, especially if they like college.

Other than Green, Butler may end up having the longest pro career of any of these players. But it’s almost certain that he’ll wait another year to start it.

Trinton Studivant, junior OT
15 percent

When Green was listing the players that were in the underclassmen meeting, this is the name that we reporters had to literally play our tapes back to make sure we got the name right: Sturdivant? The guy with two knee surgeries who only started half of Georgia’s games this year?

Actually, it makes some sense from a personal standpoint: No one on Georgia’s roster is more aware of the injury risk, so Sturdivant could decide that he might as well assume that risk while he’s drawing a paycheck. But then the question becomes how much, if any, of a paycheck he can draw. Sturdivant’s skills are well-known from early in his career, but NFL scouts would probably like to see his knee hold up one more season.

Ben Jones, junior C
5 percent

Jones has said he’s coming back, and Green didn’t list him among the players that were in that meeting with McKay. You never know, but you can almost certainly pencil him in to next year’s starting line.

As for the rest, as Boykin said, time will tell.


Anonymous said...

I think you may be putting too much stock in the fact that the players went to meet McKay. It could be informational, curiosity or just a chance to meet NFL people. I just don't think you can draw any inferences from it.

Anonymous said...

My opinion is that all of our underclassmen linemen will need another year to prove themselves to the League.

Anonymous said...

Until you understand how the pro process works (readers of the blog), don't be selfish and root for players to return. It becomes a business the minute the Tech game is over. You can never fault a player for going pro and achieving his dream. Even that $400,000 signing bonus as a mid round pick is so much better than the $50,000 he makes his first year out in the real world if something happens and he gets hurt. Also, its not always about what you do on the field in college, as evidenced by a number of players in the league currently. If you measure up to the metrics set forth by the league, you will get paid. You may not last long, but you'll get your shot.

All that being said, you only get to experience college ball once. We'd all go back to college for one more year if given the chance, so please come back everyone.

Willb said...

I follow this kind of stuff every year and if I had to guess i would say only Green and Houston are gone. Although with Houston if he is told he is a possible second round pick he might come back. Just because he had ten sacks in the SEC doesn't guarantee he is a first round pick. He looks like a first rounder to me but you never know. Todd Grantham might be one of the better coaches for his position to tell him if he is ready.

Green on the other hand could skip all the pre draft activities and still be a top five pick. I personally can't wait to see him representing UGA in the NFL next year. I would like him to stay but out of all the players i have personally seen come through Ga he is possibly the most NFL ready after his junior season.

In his three seasons at Ga the starting QB's have thrown for 25, 24, and as of right now 24 touchdowns. I don't think it was a coincidence that Aj Green was on the three most prolific passing td seasons in Ga history. After the Bowl game Murray will more than likely break the record with I'll guess 27 passing td's.

I hope after a few years when Stafford, Green, and Moreno are dominating the NFL we all sit back and think we actually had these guys all on the same team! While we didnt win the SEC or national championship with these guys like this year it wasnt the offenses fault. As good as Stafford, Green, and Moreno were they couldnt play defense.

Stafford looks like the real deal if only he can get past those shoulder injuries. If Moreno gets the carries he will be a perennial thousand yard back and one of the better receiving backs in the league. If Green goes to the right QB he could be the best in the league in a couple of years.

Willb said...

Anybody else see where Jay Romes dad said his son is likely to choose Ga?

If thats true that's one of the big three in the state of Georgia. Rome, Drew, and Crowell.

I have a pretty good feeling about all of them. When all is said and done I think we will have a top five class. With Richt emphasizing immediate playing time I think a lot of kids will take a good look at Ga.

Athough I wonder if Rome would be redshirted. We have Charles, White, and Figgins. Then you have Lynch returning. I believe we have possibly three NFL talent tight ends on the team without Rome. I dont know how much playing time he would get next year.

Charles is good enough to play wr at times next year. Come next year he will possibly be Murrays number one target and I think he will be the best tight end in the nation. I think he might leave early for the NFL after next season.

Then Figgins and White will graduate. After next year that could leave Lynch and possibly Rome as out tight ends. No matter what happens that is a position of strengh for at least the next couple of years.

Anonymous said...

I love how many "experts" are on here. People who say things like "until you understand how this works" are the dumbest of them all. Get a life.

Anonymous said...

Stafford and Moreno will never dominate the NFL, Willb.

Anonymous said...

Mine only problim with commenters "ON" this blog is when other "commenters" put down punkuation and grammer of other commenters on this commenter section!

Anonymous said...

A J tweeting at the Mickey D's Drive thru proves there was a lot to be desired with the S&C program concerning nutrition. See ya AJ and hope the selling of last years pathetic bowl game jersey was well worth it. Hopefully next year UGA will get the real playmakers on the field who wants to be a real team player and get back to playing UGA football.

Muckbeast said...

If I could make one change to this blog, it would be to completely and utterly eliminate all discussions of whether or not someone is going to turn pro.

Not only is it uninteresting, but there's nothing anyone can do about it - at all.

Furthermore, I firmly believe that the more it gets talked about, the more likely it is that the borderline people will decide to go pro.

OldDawg55 said...

Mr Blog Man, I, too, agree that this is devoting too much space to the NFL jumpers. We do have a game to play against UCF and it's not a shoo in. Too, you could pick up a phone and contact some of the "possibles" for next year. I realize you're not a recruitnik but it is a high interest item for your readers. No comments from the team about the bowl game?? No comments from the coaching staff?? Go you hairy Dawgs, GATA one more time!!!

ChrisDawg said...

Why could Stafford not dominate in the NFL anon? He has been injured this year. He has never been injury prone before so I can only hope that he will not be injured during his entire career. He has an elite arm and an elite wr. When he has played this year he has been very good. Also last year was not bad at all considering he was a rookie and he played for the Lions.

I could also see Moreno being a constant 1000 yard back. He might not completely dominate like a Adrian Peterson but he will be good. More carries and less fumbles and he will have a great career.

David Davis said...

This is a bulldogs blog where anything related to the bulldogs is relevant for him to write about. You guys sure do complain a lot. I am curious about the players leaving to the NFL. I'm sure others are too.

Seth, keep up the good work. I appreciate any and all analyses. I'm sure when players or coaches mention the bowl game, you will write about it.

I do have one question? Have you been to practice lately? How is the atmosphere?

Seth Emerson said...


They've only had one bowl practice, and that was Saturday. Next one is Wednesday. That's kind of why I've been filling the blog with off-field material like the going-pro talk.

Thanks for the kind words by the way.

ChrisDawg said...

Seth I was just on YouTube and saw numerous Dawg interview videos from dmhale0920 from earlier this year. I'm assuming that was David Hale.

I have only started coming to this blog lately so I don't know what it was like when Hale ran it but is this something that the he always did? Post interviews with bulldog players on YouTube?

Is this something that you could possibly do? Watching Boykin, Green, Ealey and even coach Garner I learned more about them than I ever knew before. It's one thing watching them play the game it's another seeing them in a one on one interview.

I for one was very impressed with Botkin in the David Hale interviews. He seemed like a real smart kid.

Also for anyone else who has seen these videos on YouTube where are they at? I see a elevator with a Bulldog "G" on it. Looks like a cool place. Is that where you cover the Dawgs at every day Seth?

Seth Emerson said...


Yes, among the many things Dave did well on this blog was video. But at the same time he left, the person who handled videos also departed for another job. I'd love to return to doing the videos, but unfortunately it's not feasible at this time.

Anonymous said...

Stafford and Moreno never dominated because, let's face it, they're not very good pro players. In Stafford's case, he wasn't a good college player. I guess I don't have any real reasoning other than just watching them and not being very impressed. But, in my opinion, they will be afterthoughts in 5 years.

Anonymous said...

That should be "will never dominate" by the way.

Anonymous said...

Stafford was pretty good in college. He started as a true freshman at UGA in the SEC and won 9 games. Then he won 11 and 10 games. His stats were not bad either. If he came back for his senior season he might of broke some Dawg records.

He still has a chance to be very good in the NFL. Because he is injured now he will suck forever? If you have seen him play this year then you would know he was much improved and would of had a great season if not injured.

ChrisDawg said...

Seth I don't know if you have seen these videos but I'm sure you have been where most of them were shot. Where is this at. I see an elevator with a bulldog logo on it.

Wherever it is it looks real nice. How would you compare the Ga facilities to the Sc facilities?

Also are Boykin and Orson Charles as impressive in person as they come across in these videos? They seem very smart and very mature for how young they are.

Do you develop a relationship with these kids with you being around them so much? Are there certain players you are particularly fond of?

Sorry for all these questions but you have what would be my dream job! I couldn't do it of course considering I would be a little bias torwards the Dawgs.

Anonymous said...

I just remember being constantly disappointed with Stafford. He won nothing while he was here. I've seen him as a pro this year and last, and while I agree he has the desire to be good, I just see his pro career like his college one. A big disappointment.

Anonymous said...

He won 9, 11, and 10 games at Ga! He broke the single season td record. Stafford like Murray this year cannot play defense. Outside of his freshman year the Ga offense played very well under Stafford.

If he would of stayed for his senior season we would of no doubt won at the least 10-11 games. Outside of David Greene Ga has never had a QB win games and put up numbers like Stafford.

What do you consider a success? Winning ten games a year is a failure to you? Maybe you should look back on Ga's history and show me all the other qb's that were better than Stafford.

Anonymous said...

Shockley and greene were better qbs this decade! You need to look back in ga history and find a more highly touted qb who accomplished less!

Success is measured in championships, and stafford has zero. Don't give me this crap about defense. I was a student when stafford was there, and i saw all of his games. He lost plenty because he thought he could throw the ball anywhere. He was too over confident.

Anonymous said...

A player is not a failure because your expectations of him were too high!

I'll agree that Shockley and Greene were better qb's but in my opinion those are possibly the two best qb's in Ga history.

To say Staffords stay at Ga was a failure is idiotic at best. Look back through Ga's history. There are not tons of qb's of Staffords ability. Ga does not churn out ten win seasons like you and a lot of other fans seem to believe. Mark Richt has set the expectations for this fan base so high they possibly will never be met.

I think you seriously understate Staffords stay at Ga. Just like many fans are understating the kind of season that Murray has had this year.

I was watching an SEC show on Cable the other night and the host listed the fan bases with the most unrealistic expectations and Ga was on almost all of there list.

If you think Stafford was a failure just because he did not win an sec or national championship then there are a good number of great qb's that have played that are failures in your view.

Anonymous said...

"too over confident"

That's pretty confident.

Anonymous said...

Haters gonna hate.

I bet unimpressed anon would have loved it if Stafford came back for '09. Of course, that's only in hindsight because at the time he was probably spouting off the "good riddance" line another anon poster tossed toward the single best receiver to ever play at Georgia.

Nice job gang. Seriously.

Muckbeast said...

There are a lot of things I'd rather see than a bunch of articles about "will he or won't he" go pro. That's just such a boring and pointless issue until someone makes a real announcement.

How about some in depth analysis of trends and such from the past year?

More info on our upcoming opponent.

Analysis of the upcoming year, schedule, etc.

Examination of how things will change with some of our opponents. Who is losing a lot of players to graduation or the pros. I've got less problem hearing about OTHER teams' players leaving. Reading about them getting hyped up for the jump is fine.

Stores of things that happened to you, Seth, throughout the year while covering the bulldogs.

More mailbags.

Just a few examples of far more interesting topics imho.

Carey said...


I would assume that those videos were probably shot at Butts- Mehre Heritage Hall on campus at UGA. If you have never been, you really should check it out... basically a UGA museum in the lobby and all of the coaches offices are also located there. It is open pretty much during regular business hours, I would assume while school is in session.

BuLLdawg said...


Great Googly Moogly Seth Emerson.

Sometimes you get after the of your blog as you did yesterday in your comments and as you did the day before as well.

But, "AVERAGE" year ?

We played 8 powder-puff football teams this season

# 45 Strength of Schedule

ALL these teams played TOUGHER OPPONENTS than we. We are # 45 in This Great Nation at playing good football teams. Whom did we beat ?

No 1.

We lost to 2 powder-puff "teams" and beat 6 powder-puff "teams" while beating no even reasonable team.

We are, in fact, 3 wins in 12 games vs Top 10 Final AP Poll teams in the entire DECADE of Mark Richt, which began in 2001.

We ALSO have now 10 LOSSES in these 10 years of the Mark Richt Era to teams NOT RANKED in the Top 25 Final AP Poll, such as 5-7 Colorado this season whom we played WITH AJ Green - and STILL LOST.

"Average" ?

There is something even resembling "Average" about The Georgia Bulldogs' 2010 season, culminating in 27 players garnering

27 AWARDS for a 6-6 team

who beat no 1.

Seth Emerson, sir, you are PANDERING to the who only come to your blog to FLAME.

Personal Flames.

While you say our fan base has many who speak the truth and get to it, trying to admit our areas needing fixing and get after that task, obviously at hand for embattled coach Mark Richt, who faces a FAR TOUGHER Schedule 2011 without ALL these players GONE from this 2010 roster when you TOOK OVER THIS BLOG for David Hale.

Do you want folks to look back at your posts from this 2010 dismal season, as see you describe it instead as "average" really sir ?

Anonymous said...

Stafford won like 30 games in 3 years including # 2 in the nation in 2007. He's ONLY 22 years old and he has 70 million and he was only 1 semester short of graduating . Yeah that guy's a real " underachiever".

Anonymous said...

BLLdawg you're blogging has been very weak this year. WELL below average.If our schedule is weak why did you predict the SEC to go 7-3 in bowls including UGA to win. Go root for whatever other team you root for and don't come back unless you bring your A game.

Anonymous said...

BuLLdawg is off in mamby pamby land. Want some tissue? You JACKWAGON.

BuLLdawg said...


8 you list on your list and you did not list them all, nor discuss The Major Reason why a player leaves, when no one really thought they would - GRADES.

Caleb Darnell King.

Aron White.

DeAngelo Tyson.

Marcus Dowtin.

Cornelius Washington.

Nick Williams.

Bacarri Rambo.

Sanders Commings.

Jakar Hamilton.

There are others that could be listed. NFL players are paid $70,000 a year by the NFL Player's Association if they are injured on the 53-man roster. That has to look pretty darn good to anyone.

So, you list 8 (after I got past your Signature Opening Line of Average) and leave off another dozen, while you and your buddy neither one discusses GRADES.

Why are these players here ?

To leave and go be CEO of a company ?

To get paid to play in the NFL with a secure paycheck guaranteed for the rest of their natural life ?


32 NFL teams, 53-man roster and some may be looking at just making the taxi squads.

32 x 53 + = 1,696 NFL players today on active NFL rosters.


34 former Bulldogs are listed on the page for today


If all 120 just only 1-A FBS teams had 34 former players in the NFL listed today, there would be 4,080


Georgia players have a BETTER chance of making the NFL rosters than every school in America except 3.

Do you wish to peruse the list of 34 today on NFL rosters who played here, such as Danny Ware and Knowshon Moreno - both of whom this blog's posters lambasted for leaving early Mr. Blog Man - and study which ones had grade issues causing them to go to the NFL ?

No one here gave Danny Ware ANY shot. He had several carries and a catch Sunday in their big win over the Redskins by the New York Giants. The Giants are now 8-4. Danny Ware plays in EVERY GAME.

Danny Ware did not even get drafted, and this blog is chalk full of posts saying how stupid he was for leaving. He went to Hargrave because of GRADES.

5.62 yards per carry in The NFL is what Danny Ware is doing, right now today folks.


He has his ring.

Danny Ware.

He is not on the practice squad. Active Roster. Played Sunday.

Danny Ware has several kick-off returns, plays for a team with lots of great running backs, catches passes, runs the ball very well when he is in there, is elusive, he is big at over 6 feet official NFL height and over 234 lbs of hard-hitting running.

Ok, he was inactive for the Super Bowl.

Do you think Danny Ware, or I for that matter, give 1 crap about what is said by these blog posters hiding behind their keyboard, saying the best players on the team should not be considering the NFL and the paycheck for their profession ?

I am not surprised by this list whatsoever; I am surprised by all those you do list going down to 5 percent chance they go to the NFL, and leaving off all these others.

And, there are others I did not list.

If you are going to do an analysis of who MIGHT remotely go to the NFL, you have to look at not their draft status ALONE, but look in addition at their GRADES.

Georgia is what ? Going to go 13-1 and National Champions 2011 ? You don't know NFL players. I do. I talk to them daily. They get paid to play, and our players want only to get paid (more power to them) as well, such as Caleb King.

BuLLdawg said...

Let me get this straight, just so I have it clearly in my mind.

You criticize my choices for winners in their bowl game against the spread such as Auburn, Boston College, Pittsburgh, Texas A&M, Miami Ohio, Arkansas, Va Tech, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Missy State, Alabama, Florida, Northwestern, South Carolina, Georgia, Miami Florida, South Florida, Nebraska, North Carolina, Syracuse, SMU, Oklahoma State, Baylor, East Carolina, Missouri, West Virginia, Air Force, Toledo, Tulsa, Navy, Boise State, So Miss, Troy, Northern Illinois and BYU - all of whom I take vs the points

And, you have no guts to put your own choices up.

Har bloody har

Do you realize what a wimp you are in doing so ?

Please keep it up.

I need a good laugh at a wimp

BuLLdawg said...

" If you look at Stafford, we struggled with him."


August 31, three and a half months ago ?

Mark Richt said we struggled with Matthew Stafford.

He is 6 feet 2 and a quarter inches 232 lbs. Yeah, right, Aaron Murray is 6 feet 1 and a half inches tall.

He lived in Dunwood, Georgia when his dad was at The University of Georgia getting a degree, here.

He runs the 40-yard dash is 4.81

Matthew Stafford has played in 13 games in the NFL with 6 fumbles and 21 interceptions. They have won 3 games of the 13 with him as QB with a QB Rating of 67

Here is the QB Rating vs Salary Chart :

When Matthew Stafford got here to Georgia, we were great. When he left, we were not.

BuLLdawg said...

Gentry Estes at

What a come-on advertisement by you Seth Emerson for a PAY per VIEW site with information covered for FREE all over the Internet.

Failed model.

Did you get your boss to pay for your subscription or get it for free by advertising his worthless site for him - like you got your heat turned on by Scana ?

Anonymous said...

BuLLdawg put your helmet on and go get on the small bus.

David Davis said...

Do you guys criticize other writers when they don't write what you want? My goodness.

You don't tell Seth how or when to do his job. This blog is FREE. You aren't paying for it. Some of these comments are RIDICULOUS.

BuLLdawg. You make some good points this time around. I was never a fan of stafford either, but I'm high on Murray right now. Althought, I still think you are in mamby pamby (I couldn't resist) land as another person already said...haha.

I kid.

Anonymous said...

BullDawg how many players do you see leaving then? I see three early at the most. More than likely two.

Every year you could make a list like you did.

I seriously think your a robot man. You speak only on numbers and never with your heart or possibly your brain. If you are anything like this in real life I would hate to know you!

I really wish you would stop posting here. Go to ajc or something. You seem as though you are trying to pull other fans over to the dark side or something.

Look at other posters comments about you! You are not a respected poster here. Wy not go where people enjoy reading your crap?

Anonymous said...

Three years thirty wins, top tanking since Herscel Walker in 07, single season td record. Number one pick in the NFL draft after junior season. Yeah he was a failure!

I wonder what people mean when they say our fan base has the most unrealistic expectations? I guess because we think we have earned the right to call that a failure.

Anonymous said...


Will you please just post more?

I'm tired of seeing 1 story a day (plus some tweets).

Hale had stories, links, etc. going constantly.

No knock on you, I love the information you give us. But lately there has not been much there. I know the season ended, but the world didn't stop turning.

Muckbeast said...

David Davis, learn to read.

There is nothing wrong with people providing feedback about the sort of stuff they'd like to read. Every blogger wants to know what their readership is most interested in.

Will they or won't they about people leaving for the NFL is a pointless, uninteresting topic. There are far more interesting possibilities for good blog posts.

Anonymous said...

From my perspective, the only ones who should think about leaving early are Green, Houston, Walsh, and Butler. Anybody else would be making a mistake.

Seth Emerson said...

Officially, I'm supposed to be on vacation today and yesterday. But I spent this morning working on a blog that will be posted shortly, along with a feature on Marcus Dowtin for tomorrow's papers, and I worked yesterday on the draft blog.

So the next person who says something about not posting enough, prepare to be tracked down and shot. Or something.

Anonymous said...

He won as many SEC championships and Joe Cox.