Richt tells listeners on his call in show last night that Georgia is going to use this week to get back to some of the basics. Fundamentals are an obvious area on which to focus, but he also hinted at further talent evaluation.
“Our goal as coaches is to put the best players in the game, and the ones that give us the best shot at winning, in our opinion,” Richt said. “Sometimes we’re right and sometimes we’re wrong. But the goal is to get the right ones in the game and the more opportunities we give these guys the more chances they have to prove that they can do it. So we’ll be open-minded to all those types of things. But the bottom line is we’ve gotta get ready.”
That came in response to a specific question about Turman and Bauta not seeing the field, but I suspect Richt’s comment there is likely to turn out to be more about the defense.
The more interesting stuff was health-related.
Another caller asked Richt about the offensive line, which he said “seems to be getting pushed around,” leaving “our backs scrapping for every yard.” Georgia’s tailbacks were held to 3.4 yards per carry by Missouri.
“You know what, Don, that was a big part of our discussion as an offensive staff,” Richt said. “You’re 100 percent right. We did not play as well up front as we had earlier in the season.”
He pointed to two mitigating factors: Left guard Isaiah Wynn was sick, requiring a couple IVs before the game. Center Brandon Kublanow played through a hurt ankle. Wynn’s nausea hadn’t been publicized…
… Something else that could help the blocking: Fullback Christian Payne, who blocked well when available earlier in the season, could return for the Florida game, Richt said. Payne has been dealing with an injury to his fibula.
The tackles weren’t ailing, so health issues can only explain so much. (To his credit, Richt acknowledged that.) Still, getting Kublanow’s ankle healthy and Payne’s return would be welcome for the Florida game.