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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Notes: Diamond Dogs lose, Taylor "graduates," Harrow commits elsewhere

Yours truly was away from the computer on Wednesday night, so I missed a chance to post a few items. Now after drinking a lot of water – let’s just say they might be a bit low on champagne in downtown Athens this morning – I can give you a catch-up:

- The Georgia baseball team opened play in the SEC tournament with a 10-0 loss to Vanderbilt. In fact the Bulldogs were held to just one hit, the first time since 2009 that's happened.

The loss puts the Bulldogs in an elimination game today against Auburn. The loser is not only headed home from Hoover, but their season is done. Georgia will need to win its next three games, at least, in order to be eligible for an NCAA tournament bid.

Sophomore left-hander Alex Wood (4-7, 4.80 ERA) will start for Georgia against junior right-hander Derk Vernadore (6-2, 3.75). The game will begin 30 minutes after the conclusion of the Arkansas-Mississippi State game, which begins at 10:30 a.m.

- There’s much better news for the baseball team: Jonathan Taylor has “graduated” from the in-patient program at the Shepherd Center to the “Day program.” That means Taylor, who suffered a serious neck injury earlier this year, will live next to the Shepherd Center in a connecting resident hall. He will continue rehab for the next four-to-six weeks.

“After rehab, he goes back to the residence hall and is on his own until the next day when he goes back for rehab,” team spokesman Christopher Lakos said. “They do this for their patients to help them get adjusted to being independent.”

- Ryan Harrow, a big recruiting target for the Georgia men’s basketball team, announced via Twitter that he was headed instead to Kentucky.

That’s a big disappointment for the Bulldogs, who thought they had a good chance at the N.C. State transfer. Harrow, a 6-foot-1 point guard, would have fit nicely in the lineup once he became eligible for the 2012-13 season.

Georgia could still end up adding another player to this year's class. Guard Kevin Ware, the former Tennessee signee from Rockdale County, has yet to announce his plans. But the Ware situation isn’t exactly clear-cut; he’s already backed out of another commitment, to Central Florida, and has yet to qualify academically.

- Finally, I had an item earlier on Mark Richt and his lake house being up for sale, downplaying the notion that it was somehow connected to his job security. Chip Towers at the AJC reached Richt later, and the coach relayed that he had decided to sell the house, which he built in 2009, out of a desire to feed the needy.

Richt said he was inspired after reading a book by Richard Stearns, “The Hole in our Gospel.”

“I was actually compelled to do this much earlier,” Richt told the AJC. “I made the decision to do it a while ago but I didn’t want to do it during the season or during recruiting because I knew it would be blown out of proportion. But it’s been on my heart for a long time, so we’re just going ahead and doing it.”

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