[Photo Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports]
Bama blog's spring assessment of UGA:
Like their Cocktail Party dance partners, Georgia will have their season defined by how well the offense can cover for a young defense. The dawgs return only three defensive starters from last year's unit. Gone are Geathers, Jenkins, Rambo, and Jones. In their stead, they leave one returning starter at each level of the defense. Of the three, only cornerback Swann moves the dial, on the heels of a fantastic debut season as a true freshman.
The other side of the ball is a different story, as Georgia returns a whopping ten starters from an offense that averaged nearly 38 points a game last season. The last that I saw, the offense is going through spring practices with only one running back, but the injured Marshall (hamstring) is expected to be back in time to participate in the spring scrimmage on April 6.
[Roll Bama Roll]
Defensive line starters?
One thing that’s certain is that Garrison Smith will man one of the defensive end spots. Smith came on strong for the Bulldogs in the second half of the season, starting the final seven games. With 57 tackles, he’s the team’s second-leading returning tackler.
Unfortunately, the rest of the defensive line picture is as clear as mud.
The competition for the starting nose tackle position is wide open. Of the candidates currently listed on the depth chart, Mike Thornton has the most experience, appearing in 14 games last season while playing mostly on special teams. However, redshirt freshman John Taylor impressed coaches in practice last fall and is the only Dawg defender with the prototypical size (6’ 4” 335) of a true nose tackle. Freshman John Atkins will also get a long look as well and could end up in the rotation this fall.
Similarly, the end spot opposite Smith is also up for grabs. Ray Drew is the favorite to win the job after recording 15 stops in UGA’s final four games, but he’ll have some stiff competition from sophomore Sterling Bailey and senior Clint Kirk. Don’t be surprised to see Thornton see some snaps here as well since he played DE last season.
Patrick Garbin's post on Jeff Sanders (6-3/215 defensive lineman) who passed away earlier this week after a long bout with cancer.
Thomas Brown joins the Herd:
Marshall coach Doc Holliday reportedly has hired former Georgia Bulldogs running back Thomas Brown to coach the Thundering Herd’s running backs. Brown would replace JaJuan Seider, who left to join West Virginia’s staff last week.
Herald-Dispatch columnist Chuck Landon first reported the hiring via Twitter Tuesday night.
Brown comes to Marshall after spending last season coaching the running backs at the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga. UTC rushed for 1,845 yards in 2012 averaging 4 yards per rush. Brown had joined the Georgia State football program in January before getting the offer from Holliday to come to Marshall. Brown also served as a graduate assistant at the University of Georgia in the strength and conditioning program.
Daily dose of statistical minutiae:
Of quarterbacks with at least 250 pass attempts, only Georgia's Aaron Murray and San Jose State's David Fales completed at least 40% of those passes for 10 or more yards.
[College Football by the Numbers]
SEC and National News
Mal Moore hospitalized:
University of Alabama athletics director Mal Moore has been admitted to Brookwood Hospital in Birmingham for treatment regarding ‘pulmonary problems’, according to the university.
“Alabama Athletics Director Mal Moore has been admitted to Brookwood Hospital in Birmingham for tests and treatment regarding pulmonary problems,” the statement read. “Additional information will be released when available.”
Moore has served as Bama’s AD since 1999.
[Saturday Down South]
ESPN is now reporting on tweets:
Bama's Mario Cristobal will earn $475,000 salary with the Crimson tide this year to be offensive line coach. When he was head coach of Florida international in 2012 his salary was $522,000.
Auburn assistant coaches salaries:
Auburn: Here's a breakdown of the salaries, according to the AP: Ellis Johnson ($800,000), Rodney Garner ($500,000), Charlie Harbison ($450,000), Rhett Lashlee ($350,000), Dameyune Craig ($350,000), JB Grimes ($275,000), Tim Horton ($250,000), Melvin Smith ($250,000), and Scott Fountain ($210,000).
Music by PanicFan
The Wood Brothers are musician siblings Chris and Oliver Wood from Boulder, Colorado. Chris is a founding member of Medeski Martin & Wood, and Oliver played second guitar with Tinsley Ellis before forming King Johnson.
When I Was Young
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The Luckiest Man
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