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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Richt and his coaches talk about the signing class

I have to transcribe and then hack out some stories. But here are a few highlights from Mark Richt's signing day news conference, and interviews with the coordinators.

Richt didn't hide from the importance of this signing class. At one point the Georgia head coach said the group of 25 (and possibly counting) “is going to represent about one-third of our football team.”

And Richt didn’t need to mention Isaiah Crowell when he said:

“There was drama today. And quite frankly it was good drama,” he said.

Offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said he watched Crowell’s announcement in his office, and was pretty sure it was going to be Georgia, but it wasn’t confirmed until Crowell said so.

Bobo said the best comparison for Crowell was former Bulldog running back Robert Edwards.

“He’s got great speed, great vision, and he has a relentless attitude when he runs the ball,” Bobo said. “I think he can be a difference-maker.”

But a couple weeks ago, when Malcolm Mitchell and Jay Rome announced for Georgia, Bobo called that probably the best he’s felt since the day Matt Stafford committed.
Ironically, Bobo had lunch that day with former teammate and old friend Kirby Smart.

“We didn’t talk,” Bobo said with a grin. “We just sort of sat in silence.”

Richt said the current class “has got a bit of swagger about it.” He also praised the players who made early commitments for sticking with them.

“Guys could’ve bailed … But they held their faith in Georgia and this coaching staff,” he said.

The class probably isn’t done. The coaches couldn’t mention nose tackle John Jenkins, who will announce his decision on Saturday. Recruiting coordinator (and defensive line coach) Rodney Garner would only say “there’s a possibility” they’ll sign another player or two. He said that with a grin.

Some other nuggets:

- Bruce Figgins has been moved full-time to fullback. That could open the possibility to Rome playing as a freshman, even though Orson Charles and Aron White are still around.

- Christian LeMay said he didn’t have any expectations about playing this fall, and just wanted to learn the system and see what happens. Bobo said he wanted to get LeMay ready to compete.

- Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham confirmed that Ray Drew is a weakside linebacker in the Justin Houston mold. The other linebacker signees, like Amarlo Herrera and Ramik Wilson, can play both inside and outside but are more likely to play on the outside.

The big decision, Grantham added, is what to do with Jarvis Jones. The way Grantham spoke Jones will play somewhere, they’re just not sure whether it’ll be inside or outside.

- It doesn’t sound like a full-time move to offense is in the works for Branden Smith. Bobo was non-committal, and sounded more excited to use Malcolm Mitchell there.

Speaking of which, it certainly seems there will be a friendly fight between the offensive and defensive coaches on where to use Mitchell. Richt said he was “leaning” towards using Mitchell at receiver.

Bobo said the coaches used Branden Smith – and Champ Bailey – as an example to other guys like Nick Marshall and Damian Swann. Those guys will be defensive backs but would certainly get looks on offense.

I'll have more in stories to come, which I need to hack out now.


Anonymous said...

I think we need to stop using guys in more than one spot. If someone needs to be a WR, make them a WR. If they need to be a DB, make them a DB.

Pick which one Smith, Mitchell, etc. are better at and let's develop them there.

(Of course, this comment comes in a post that mentions Robert Edwards - one of the best conversions in UGA history)

Brett said...

Seth, again you left Lynch off the list when you mentioned our TEs. Is he leaving the team or something? I thought he was highly touted, showed some great potential, and was hoping to see him get some more playing time. That guy's wicked ahwesome.

Seth Emerson said...

Nothing wrong with Lynch as far as I know. He's just behind Orson Charles and Aron White right now - and perhaps also now Jay Rome.

Anonymous said...

Love the comment from Richt today that tells me he MIGHT have learned from 2010:

"I think everybody better hook it up and get ready to compete," Richt said. "We're not giving anybody a 100-percent guarantee they have a job."

Anonymous said...

Why is Arkansas allowed to sign 30 players? I thought the SEC limit was 28? WTF?

Anonymous said...

Are you suggesting that Bobby Petrino did something less than honorable? You must be joking...

Anonymous said...

Um, our basketball team won tonight....Bueller?

Anonymous said...

In response to the quote about "one or two more guys," is there anyone left Georgia is targeting besides Jenkins?

Scott said...

My fear is that this guy could be almost as good as Herschel Walker (nobody will be as good as Herschel) but Bobo will insist on running back by committee. Remember what Walker said about running the ball all of the time: It's not heavy!

Anonymous said...

Ho hum another top recruiting class and another year of underachievers at UGA. Yawn.... Wake me up when UGA wins anything of significance....

Anonymous said...

So much Talent so little coaching... whats new for UGA football ?

Ginny said...

Awww I see some jealous, "anonymous" Tech fans have made their way here. Cute.

I don't see where Bobo is afraid to use one guy as an every-down RB. He did that Knowshon Moreno. The problem with King/Ealey is that there wasn't one that really separated himself because they kept getting hurt, suspended, etc.

Anonymous said...

It doesn't matter if we recruited the Green Bay Packers, won't amount to nothing as long as we have this jesus fearing jackass running things.