What a mess we have at left guard.

Otherwise known as four out of five ain’t bad.

Richt said Georgia probably will go with one of two starting lineups on the line that both include Andrews at center and Pyke at right guard.

One lineup would also have Theus at left tackle, sophomore Brandon Kublanow at left guard and Houston at right tackle. The other would include senior Mark Beard at left tackle, Houston at left guard and Theus at right tackle.

If Theus is indeed the best offensive tackle on the squad, and he looked clearly improved at G-Day, then playing him at right tackle isn’t the best utilization of his talent.  But the coaches recognize at this point that they may not have a choice.

Richt is surprisingly sunny about the o-line’s prospects…

“I think we’re going to be very good up front,” Richt said. “We won’t be this dominating bunch of maulers, but they’re very well-coached, they know what they’re doing, they get their hat in the right spot, they run their feet on contact. They’ve got a little meanness and toughness about them. If you do that, you’re going to create some space for these great backs and create some time for the quarterback to throw it. I think we’re going to be in good shape.”

… and there’s been some chatter that there may be some help coming with this year’s freshman class, but I don’t think the hesitation over the makeup of the line is because there’s a wealth of options at left guard and I’m skeptical of a true freshman lineman being a significant contributor on an SEC team.  What I’m afraid of is that the uncertainty at left guard drags Friend and Bobo into doing more personnel shuffling during the season than they’d like.

This team is loaded at the skill positions.  Mason looks like he’s going to be a capable manager of the offense, maybe more.  Bobo knows what he’s doing.  All the elements for a productive offense are in place.  You’d hate to see what could be a strength, or at least a point of stability – after all, if you’ve settled on four guys as your starters, what you’d really like to do is plug ‘em in to their spots and go – wind up limiting that production.

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30 Comments

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30 responses to “What a mess we have at left guard.

  1. I’m hoping Kublanow’s injuries this spring were the main thing holding him back. Would be great if he can get healthy this summer and really take ownership of that spot in the fall.

    • Vinings Dawg

      I hear the Kublanow is the meanest little shit of the bunch. O Linemen need to hate everybody except eachother and their Back/QB. Being a mean prick is part of the job description. I think he’ll be fine. Watts will be back as well once he heals up. Nobody likes a late shuffle as this is a line of refrigerators that needs to function like a well oiled coke machine, but with the class coming in I think we’ll have a t least one solid contributor and two pace backups.

  2. Timphd

    Dantzler was supposedly competing for playing time before the concussion. Maybe he comes back and solidifies a spot. Sure would be deflating if our o line lets us down.

  3. You can pretty much rinse and repeat this post with different names every year. Sigh

  4. Scorpio Jones, III

    Wait a minute….Mark Richt says we got us some good skill players…everybody agrees.

    Mark Richt says the o-line is gonna be ok…everybody is full of doubt and worry.

    I find this confusing.

  5. Doggoned

    Hey,
    This is the most optimistic Richt has sounded in years about the OL. Now the defensive backfield …

  6. David K

    If Theus is our best tackle, consider me very worried.

  7. Skint

    Best option is Beard, Houston, Andrews. Pyke, Theus. It’s hard for a true freshman OL in the SEC. Why we didn’t recruit some of the elite JUCOs knowing our situation is baffling.

  8. Joe Schmoe

    It seems to me that playing 3 guys out of position is a poor strategy for addressing 1 weak spot. If Theus is the best LT and Houston the best RT, then let them play there and find someone who can be serviceable at LG. Shuffling all of them around to address that one weak spot risks making all of those spots weaker.

    • Cousin Eddie

      Totally agree with that. Theus stated he feels more comfortable at left tackle as that is what he has played his entire career. He had to learn to step with the other foot, reach with the other hand and etc. I say if he can play left leave him there. Not certain why Beard is not moved to Right tackle. He looks more like a right tackle, unless he is not comfortable at the right side as Theus stated he has been. Then Houston can be moved to Left guard.

      • CitadelDawg

        Doesn’t that make so much more sense? I guess Beard is like Zoolander or something and can’t turn right (or however that went), but if Kubs can’t hang, Theus-Houston-Andrews-Pyke-Beard sure sounds like a decent line to me. Still, I bet Kublanow will be ready to go by fall. Maybe I’m a fool, but I feel better about the OL this year than I have in a few.

        • Dog in Fla

          “guess Beard is like Zoolander or something and can’t turn right (or however that went),”

          All the Fockers think that’s funny

    • CarlVonDawgwitz

      This is my first time posting. I had to after reading this comment. You sir are spot on! I think they are going to put Kublanow at LG and move forward. I would layout my conspiracy theory that Friend and Bobo already know the lineup but they are giving these talking points for a particular reason (player related).

  9. Brian

    Theus had way too many Whiffs last year to be a solid lock as the teams best left tackle. We had to bring in Houston or Beard to bail him out several times when he couldn’t keep up with quicker DEs and that was at right tackle not the blind sided left tackle spot. Let’s hope his light has come on as someone else suggested.

  10. W Cobb Dawg

    It’s not like Dallas Lee was a bulldozer at LG for the past couple years, so can a replacement really be that much of a drop off? Pyke and Kublanow, and others, have been in the program for over a year. I know we’re not landing the kind of OL recruits we should be, but IF we’re building these guys up and coaching these guys up, they should be serviceable. Until I see some type of improvement (which CMR is claiming), count me as not impressed at all with Friend’s work since his arrival. Best thing he’s done for us so far is being Pruitt’s roomie from college.

  11. DawgByte

    Not many people know this, but Al Gore invented the ‘Internets’. Al needs to be our LT.

  12. Pyke’s development helps a lot. I expect Kublanow at the other guard. I expect we’ll see:

    LT – Theus
    LG – Kublanow
    C – Andrews
    RG – Pyke
    RT – Houston
    6th Man = Beard

    Dantzler can’t really help us, and I’ve been saying that for 5 years. We should hope that at least one of the freshmen coming in is good enough to at least make a push, even if he redshirts.
    ~~~

  13. hot12dog

    What do we expect when we never recruit the best OL in Georgia????