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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

From the coaches' mouths: Updates on Ealey, the offensive line, Ogletree and others

The Georgia assistant coaches were available to the media after Tuesday's spring football practice. So here are some notes and quotes from them.

And feel free to chime in with any corrections or point out any typos, as I'm severely under the weather. I'd say I'm sick as a dog, but then I look over at Archie bouncing around, wondering why he's not getting a walk today. And now frankly I'm wondering where that saying ever came from.

But anyway ...

- Washaun Ealey didn’t practice on Tuesday because of a left hamstring injury. The team said the tailback was "day-to-day" (aren't we all), and running backs coach Bryan McClendon said it was "nothing serious."

The tailbacks are in an interesting spot this spring, with highly-touted recruit Isaiah Crowell set to arrive in the summer. McClendon said he speaks "a bunch of times a week", but added that the competition is "wide open."

McClendon said all four scholarship tailbacks - Ealey, Caleb King, Ken Malcome and Carlton Thomas - are getting reps with the first team.

"I tell them, let's worry about today. And the guys that are scholarship now are Caleb, Washaun, Carlton and Ken Malcome," McClendon said.

- Cordy Glenn and Trinton Sturdivant are playing both tackle spots, according to new offensive line coach Will Friend. Glenn shifted from guard after last season, and Sturdivant, who has had two knee surgeries, has only played left tackle in his career.

But for depth reasons, Friend says one or both of them will have to be able to play both tackle spots. Since quarterback Aaron Murray is right-handed, the left tackle spot is considered the most important.

“That’s his blind side, but at the same time the right tackle he’s got the same blocks and the same amount of time to get it off and all those things,” Friend said. “I think it can get overrated a bit, but that is the quarterback’s blind side.”

- Justin Anderson has moved back to offense after one year at guard. The year on the other side of the ball has Anderson catching up a bit, according to Friend, and the rising senior also isn’t completely healed from his turf toe injury.

Brent Benedict, who is also competing at guard, is also getting back up to speed after knee surgery 19 months ago.

Friend wouldn’t say that Anderson or Benedict was guaranteed one of the guard spots.

Chris Burnette appears to have made a big leap in Friend's eyes so far. Burnette, who has been the backup center, has been working with the first team at right guard. Kolton Houston, who has been working at multiple spots too, has also impressed Friend.

“We’ve graded everything,” Friend said. “When you kind of come in, they haven’t played for me. I’ve watched tape on four or five that played last year. … Somebody’s gotta run out there when they says ‘ones go out there.’ But other than that it’s zero to zero in that room.”

- The shift of Alec Ogletree to inside linebacker remained a hot topic. Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham said the rising sophomore is adjusting well, which he expected.

“You’re taking a guy that played in the secondary, so he kind of knows your rotations and where guys fit,” Grantham said. “I think it’ll allow him to come up to speed quicker.”

Secondary coach Scott Lakatos said he didn’t fight the move of Ogletree, saying he deferred to what made the defense better overall. Last year Shawn Williams and Jakar Hamilton couldn’t hold off Ogletree for the starting spot; now they have another shot at it.

“They just need to continue to get reps and learn,” Lakatos said. “That’s how you learn, you learn by doing things.”

- Kwame Geathers got a positive review from Grantham. Most people assume junior college transfer John Jenkins will start at nose tackle, but Geathers, a rising sophomore, has performed well thus far.

“I think like anything competition makes us all better,” Grantham said.

- Grantham was in midseason mode when asked what the defense needs to do to stop the run better.

“Tackle the runner,” Grantham said.

Then he went into a longer answer, but the first one was better.

- Offensive coordinator Mike Bobo was asked what he thought after watching the receivers for a few practices without A.J. Green and Kris Durham. He laughed before answering.

“We’ve got a lot of work to do, really at all positions. But I was pleased with the work of our receivers,” Bobo said. “Our issue is there isn’t a lot of depth there.”

The Bulldogs have six scholarship receivers: Tavarres King, Marlon Brown, Israel Troupe, Rantavious Wooten, Michael Bennett and Chris Conley.

- Bruce Figgins has said that his biggest adjustment to fullback is the different blocking schemes from tight end. Not, as one would expect, carrying the ball.

“Well I haven’t given him the ball yet, so that’s probably the reason why,” Bobo said, laughing.


Anonymous said...

Get well soon. And when you do get better, go back and read that section on the o-line.

I never knew having the flu made one mentally retarded.

mp said...

7:58 Anon beat me to it, but Seth, I think you meant to say that Glenn & Sturdivant are working at both tackle says they are working at both guard spots.

tmwoof said...

Hey, give him a break. If he has the stomach bug going around Athens for the past month or two, it's a miracle he was able to write as much as he did as accurately as he did. That bug is a horror; I couldn't even read until about 4 days later.

Anonymous said...

Hope you get to feeling better.

Perhaps it would help to remind you that Bobo thinks you are a funny guy. Or, you ask funny questions anyway.