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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Post-spring mailbag: Crowell's number, Ogletree's move, gardening tips and so, so much more

Thanks as always for your intelligent, deep and probing questions. Both of them. The rest of you …

Just kidding. I said gardening hoes were up for discussion, and by golly some of you wanted to discuss them. Or at least hoses. In any case, the result is a long mailbag, which I’m happy to post in full form.

I’ll start with a subject that drew multiple queries:

How is jersey issue going to pan out for Crowell & B. Smith. Both #1, and both will play (at least some) offense, right?
- Howmuchyoubench (via Twitter)

Kudos to Richt for doing what's necessary to sign Crowell, but do you see the Crowell/Smith number sharing working out? I think using mutually exclusive players on one side of the ball is necessarily predictable. Hopefully this only a one-year plan.
- Logan

They’re both going to wear No. 1, as far as we know right now, which means they can’t play at the same time. Remember, at this point Smith is still a defensive player who will just make cameo appearances on offense. It’s clear that Mike Bobo would prefer a bigger role for Smith, but for now he’s just a part-timer.

1) what kind of impact do you expect Nick Marshall to play next year? Or will we have to wait to see him get a chance?

2) Is Corey Moore expected to make an impact this year? I could see him taking over the safety spot opposite rambo by season's end (ala Ogletree)

3) Ray Drew has now been added to the UGA track team to throw discus. As a former track and field athlete, I think this is awesome, but some tend to disagree. What are your thoughts on this move, Seth?
- Stafford’s Lost Razor

So greedy with the questions. But I’ll indulge you:

1) Marshall at this point seems likely to play. While they have a lot of defensive backs coming in, Marshall and Damian Swann are the top two rated cornerbacks, so it will depend on how they look in practice, whether Sanders Commings moves to safety, and if guys like Jordan Love and Derek Owens show they can be nickel and dime backs. This also assumes that Malcolm Mitchell will play offense. There’s been talk of getting Marshall some snaps at quarterback, and having seen him play I think he can. But I’ll believe it when I see it.

2) Moore is the top-rated safety recruit, so my guess is he plays right away too. But like the previous question, it depends on where Commings plays, and how Shawn Williams, Jakar Hamilton and Mark Deas perform in camp.

3) I don’t think it can hurt or help for Drew to dabble in the discus on the side. I’m sure Joe Tereshinski will account for it when he designs Drew’s offseason program.

Do you see Grantham stacking the line with Jenkins and Geathers against Tech? … Who do you think will end up being the punt returner?
- P1Owe

There’s a looooonnnng time between now and the Georgia Tech game. But if all goes as planned that sounds like a good strategy. More immediately, they seem serious about playing Jenkins and Geathers together, but at whose expense (replacing Abry Jones in a 3-4, or going to a 4-2-5) and how often in a game? My guess you’d see them on the same line less than 50 percent of the time, but that’s only a guess.

They had four guys returning punts in spring practice: Tavarres King, Carlton Thomas, Branden Smith and Brandon Boykin. Since Boykin is returning kicks, my money is on Smith. But I wouldn’t put an extreme amount of money on it.

While the move of Ogletree to linebacker seems to have helped things, is there any concern about what it's done for the safety position? How's that looking coming out of spring?
- MarkS31

No one could really get a handle on the safeties since they were so riddled with injuries this spring. Shawn Williams was the only scholarship player who was healthy by the end. That helped make him the tentative first-teamer opposite Bacarri Rambo. But you’ve still got a ton of other guys that will have a say in that.

It does seem that Ogletree’s move makes the safeties much weaker, but the coaches swear that there was less depth at inside linebacker, which was part of the reason the move was necessitated.

1.) If the state of Alabama threatened to secede from the union, do you think anyone would stop them?

2.) Who do you think will be the starting Outside Linebackers will be when they lineup against Boise State?
- Anonymous

1) It really is unreal what’s going on in that state right now. And it doesn’t help that you have some carnival barkers in the media there that stoke the flames.

2) Jarvis Jones will be the starter at one OLB spot. The other will most likely either by Cornelius Washington or Ray Drew. If I had to guess now, Washington because of his experience.

Am I the only one who thinks Harvey Updyke is lying about being attacked? No witnesses, no camera, he didn’t see who did it? In an attack like that, the attacker would usually confront him first and then punch… I think it’s self-inflicted or staged and he’s using it to bolster his case in court about being allowed to move to Louisiana.
- K

Far from the only person. I guess he was supposed to speak this afternoon, so this may be outdated by the time it’s posted. Let’s just hope this sordid story goes away sometime soon, but that’s doubtful.

Do you think Harvey Updyke’s punishment will be for him to partake in a Alabama highway beautification project in tree planting?
- Anonymous

Perhaps, but wouldn’t this expose him to too many passing Auburn motorists?

I recommend the thumb over the end of the hose. I feel it gives you more control and I'm a cheap bastard. What are your thoughts?
- Not Anonymous

I agree. I like the way it sprays, and I also like to think a little thumb moisture just makes the day go easier.

Do our coaches regularly check our players social media pages? Some things that are posted on them are questionable at best.
- Anonymous

Not sure the coaches have the time, but I’m sure other staff members (graduate assistants, for one) are assigned to keep checks. Mark Richt said on Wednesday that if they see something questionable, they warn the players, then indicated that there isn’t a second warning.

Speaking strictly about Twitter, I don’t know if I see anything too over the line from the Georgia players. Branden Smith’s is rather melodramatic, yes, but on the other side Brandon Burrows is downright hilarious. I’d enjoy having him do a guest mailbag at some point.

As for other social media, frankly I don’t stalk the players’ Facebook pages very often. In fact I’m not “friends” with any of them. My rule is that Facebook is for personal stuff and I let them have their space there, while Twitter is more of a free-for-all.

Keep in mind, these are still 18-to-23 year olds. Of course some of the stuff they post there is going to be “questionable.” I shudder to think about some of the things I would’ve posted at that age if there was a Facebook or Twitter. Hell, some of the stuff I post NOW isn’t too smart.

I rarely water my garden - do you guys really water yours? Seth have you ever tried "Square Foot Gardening"? My yield is phenomenal. You better learn how to grow veggies.
- Suomynona

I actually don’t have much grass in my yards, but there are plants that need watering. My … er, significant other, I guess I’ll call her … just planted some veggies and flowers and such at her house, and is very proud of them. I have a friend in D.C. who has been growing garlic, and that sounds simply awesome. I LOVE garlic. The problem is that Archie the dog has now taken to chewing grass, like he’s a cow, and his breath is already bad enough. I don’t need a lab running around the place burping up garlic all the time.

Since the band is being moved to west end zone, is there any chance they'll also move the mic man? possibly to a place outside of the stadium during games?
- Anonymous

Am I sensing a healthy dislike for the mic man? Unfortunately I don’t really notice him too much, as I’m in the press box frantically blogging/tweeting/taking notes/drinking soda/punching Marc Weiszer/going to the bathroom.

It seems like UGA players have been staying out of trouble this offseason or have not been paying close enough attention.
- Josh D. Weiss

From everything we can tell they’ve been behaved. (And I say it with the caveat because of the Marcus Dowtin situation last year, which only came out six months after the fact, because it happened up in Maryland.) The other thing is that so many of the previous infractions have involved ticky-tack stuff – suspended licenses, for instance – that easily could be avoided. And they’re being avoided. So far.

I know you haven't been here long, but I'm curious about a policy Richt used to have. When he first got here, he didn't allow players to have hair coming out of their helmets (he rather famously told Tony Gilbert he had to cut his). It appears that team rule went by the wayside around 2006 or 2007 (I remember seeing a lot of Bryan Evans's long hair from the back as he hopelessly chased some receiver down the field). Any insight on the rule change?
- Bryan Grantham (still no relation)

Sorry Bryan, I honestly don’t know. Can anyone help him out here?

What date do incoming players join in summer?
- Anonymous

Depends. Most, especially those qualified and admitted quickly to Georgia, will come the first summer school semester. Others will wait. And some may come for May-mester. Jenkins was one recruit they were trying to get to Athens in May.

Cheetos or Cheese Puffs?
- Anonymous

Cheetos. I like the crunchiness.

Seth, who would you redshirt Lemay or Mason? and why. This also might make a good poll question for your readers since it will be a slow time between now and when UGA is in the CWS.

Also wanted to add Jason Heyward is overrated, looks hurt and tired and should be traded before he has the same value as Frenchy did when he was cast off.
- C

Since Mason knows the offense much better, you probably want to play him in case Murray gets hurt and redshirt LeMay. But that decision doesn’t have to be made now. LeMay might always look good enough in August that they decide to do the reverse.

I don’t think Heyward is another Franceous. Besides being a lefty, Heyward has much more bat and eye control.

Personally I like the fancy sprayers, but that's just me. Once they break though, and they always do, the thumb method works about as well. On football, what do you thing the odds are of us going 2-0, 1-1, or 0-2 to start the season?
- Anonymous

How about these quick, seat-of-my-shorts odds: Fifty percent chance the Bulldogs are 1-1, thirty percent they’re 1-1 and twenty percent they’re 0-2. The relative optimism is due to both essentially being home games. On a neutral field, I’m not sure Georgia is really better than Boise State or South Carolina right now.

Since Verne Lundquist's football play-by-play is deteriorating with every passing year, what can we do to have him replaced by Gus Johnson? I think a Johnson/Danielson team would be a winner for CBS and the SEC.
- Rob

I love Verne, but I love Gus even more. And not just because when I was younger Gus – as a local Washington sports anchor – came and spoke at my high school. Gus brings life to every game. He’s kind of like ketchup, sugar or any tasty condiment: Add him to any event, and it’s that much better. I know a lot of people disagree, and think he’s over-the-top. But while I don’t want a screeching maniac in a play-by-play announcer, and I’m tired of Dick Vitale’s antics, I also don’t want the snoozy, sultry tones of someone like Jim Nantz.

Would you be in favor of starting Seth's coed carwash? Of course you would never get any work done with that going on outside your window.
- Anonymous

Now this is the kind of thinking that made America great.

Is Jason Heyward overated? What more frustrating watching Uga football last year or Braves this year?
- Anonymous

Where’s all this hate for Jason Heyward coming today?

Do you see D'Angelo Vickers as more of an offensive guy or a defensive guy? Maybe play both ways?
- That’s what she said

That would be D’Angelo Vickers, the new Will Ferrell character on “The Office,” for those of you who need to know. I don’t really have a good answer for you, other than one of the funniest things my friends and I have done is decide that for an entire weekend we would say “that’s what she said” only when it didn’t make any sense. So you’d have the following exchanges:

Person A: Hey, do you remember the name of that Italian place we went to in Tuscaloosa?
Person B: That’s what she said!
Person A: (Perplexed look).

Trust me, this is hours of fun. Feel free to steal the idea.

When Donald Trump becomes President and armageddon rages, would owning a sustainable garden be more of a benefit or do you expect our economy to continue on a gold/silver bartering system?

My other question is can you tell that our guys have benefitted from the new strength and conditioning program/facility? Do they look leaner or at least MEANER? I'm hoping that someone rips off Stephanie Garcia's head - or whoever lines up at QB for SC.
- Geoffrey

Well done on blending the Trump and gardening questions. I would point out that the way it looks we may already be approaching a gold bartering system. And I have to think that makes Run DMC happy.

As for strength and conditioning, I’ll refer you to my post Tuesday on the top storylines from spring practice.

May I recommend Home and Garden and TV Guide for a lot of these bloggers...Seth, will you finally answer this question: Who picks up the very expensive tab for sending non-qual players to Hargrove Mil or any of the other alternative venues..and how can that sit well with the NCAA??
- OldDawg55

Look, it’s late April, 99 days until the start of fall camp. Please forgive those who don’t mind a bit of offseason fun discussing non-football issues, especially when we also address every football and sports question too. … The prep school educations are not paid for by Georgia or any college or university. At least they're not supposed to be. Who actually pays for it varies player to player. Sometimes it’s the family, sometimes the prep school gives them a scholarship, etc.

TV Question: Do you have any hope for HBO achieving "The Sopranos" or "The Wire" kind of quality again? The dramas aren't bad, but nothing like those older shows, or like Madmen now on AMC. Any thoughts on "Game of Thrones," or AMC's "The Killing" or "Breaking Bad?"
- Anonymous

I haven’t been able to watch much of “Boardwalk Empire” yet. I used to really like “Big Love,” which is in its final season, but I think it jumped the shark a bit last season. I hear a lot of good things about “The Killing” but haven’t seen it yet. I still need to get to the third season of “Breaking Bad.”

But basically, you have it right: “Mad Men” replaced “The Sopranos” as the best drama on cable, and probably all television. If anybody at HBO ever passed on “Mad Men,” they have surely been fired by now. “Dexter” is up there too, but it went a bit downhill last season.

Why do our players keep getting concussions? Are they teaching these guys how to tackle properly? I don't recall so many concussions (during the season and during spring) in past, but maybe I'm just getting old.
- Tess

There were a bunch of concussions this spring, but as I said last week the team seemed to just be handling every case cautiously. Brandon Boykin – as I also pointed out last week – was held out of the spring game with a concussion, but he wasn’t so out of it that he couldn’t pick a team – the winning team, as it turned out – or give us lucid interviews a few days before the game.

1) Now that Tompkins and Leslie are gone, what are reasonable expectations for our record next year? Over or under 15-15 (6-10)?

2) It seems we have a lot of players switching between offense and defense (Smith, Anderson, Samuel). Do you think this impedes their development?

3) So we move Ogletree from S to ILB and now the coaches are saying that we have depth issues at Safety. Is this a case of filling one hole and creating another?

4) Your thoughts on the Carver situation. Does this mean we will stop recruiting Bonner?
- Eric

Wow Eric, even more greedy than the first guy. But my summer has begun, so I’m in a good mood:

1) The addition of an elite recruit like Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and the return of two senior guards, means the team shouldn’t bottom out. Not saying they won’t, but they shouldn’t. If I had to guess right now, I’d say it’s a solid NIT team, fourth or fifth in the SEC East, depending on who returns to Tennessee.

2) Anderson and Samuel’s switches were permanent, Smith’s is not. (For now.) Certainly it hurts their development, but every program does it.

3) The depth issues at safety were because of injuries. It definitely remains an open question whether moving Ogletree was the right move, but when you look at the relative depth at safety and inside linebacker, the latter spot definitely would have been thin without it.

4) Mark Richt and his staff are handling the Carver situation delicately, declining to comment publicly. But while they haven’t said so publicly, as I’ve said before I think the odds are good that Bonner will go somewhere other than Georgia. It would be one thing if it were an issue away from the team. But this involves, allegedly, a theft from seven different current members of the team.

What is Samuel L. Jackson's connection to UGA? Is he just a fan, or does he have a relative that attended? Or does he like the letter G and the colors red & black?

If you could be any animal for a day, what would you be, and why?
- Mr. Bixby

This came up late last year when Jackson attended the Georgia Tech game. Jackson, who went to Morehouse, has a nephew and some cousins who went to Georgia, and one of his cousins is on the law school’s alumni board.

I think I’d love to be a pigeon, because there are a long list of people I’d like to literally crap on.

How big is Kwame Geathers really? I've heard everything from 320 to 350+. I get that it's not an exact science and list weights are always iffy, but what would your guess be? And is Jenkins really 360+ you think?
- NateDawg

I haven’t weighed them personally, but the coaches said Geathers was 340 at the end of spring, and Jenkins was 361 when he visited a couple weeks ago.

Not exactly a question but to be fair to Natalie Portman "Your Highness" was filmed after "Black Swann". Danny McBride actually said that they just got really lucky getting her before she won the Oscar.
- Anonymous

That’s true, but Portman and her people had to know she had a good shot at some hardware after Black Swan. To go from that to “Your Highness” is, well, unusual. Nott that I want to knock McBride, who is hilarious.


Anonymous said...

Verne sucks and the sooner CBS realizes this the better off the SEC game will be every week. Also, can they somehow get out of the US Open contract that always has them starting the SEC Season at week 3? They have to be losing revenue $$ on that one.

Anonymous said...

Can you imagine seeing all on Don Draper's adventures on HBO...or even better on Cinemax?

Anonymous said...

Do you mean a 50% chance they're 2-0? My kool-aid just went sour.

sUGArdaddy said...

Branden can change jerseys to come on offense.

He can slip another number on and they can both be on the field at the same time and take it off for defense if he wants.