Daily Archives: April 8, 2018

Know what makes me smile these days?

Discussion of Georgia’s offensive line situation, that’s what.

For the first few weeks of spring practice, the front five looked almost exactly as it did to end the 2017 season. Andrew Thomas has made the move from starting right tackle to first-team left tackle. Kendall Baker was at left guard, Lamont Gaillard at center, Ben Cleveland at right guard and redshirt freshman Isaiah Wilson at right tackle.

Of that group, only Wilson didn’t end the 2017 season as a starter. But over the past week, Baker has spent more time as the second-team left tackle with Solomon Kindley, who started seven games at right guard a season ago, moving over to play left guard.

According to Smart that shakeup has more to do with the Bulldogs trying to create some depth at tackle than it does any jobs or responsibilities changing hands on the interior.

“The move there that everybody is trying to make a big deal about, we’re trying to get another tackle ready,” Smart said. “So we’re taking Kendall Baker, allowing him to work at a secondary position, no different than a corner having to play safety or a safety play Star or a tackle play guard. Kendall Baker, we’re trying to see if he’s our best left tackle, is he our second-best left tackle, is he our best right tackle, is he our second-best right tackle.”

In times past, shuffles like that were born more of desperation to find a warm body who could occupy a slot out of necessity.  I’m not sure I can quite wrap my brain around the concept of building depth by design, but I sure as hell like reading about it.

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Time to step it up, boys.

I don’t know if this is merely coachspeak, or a legitimate concern, but as we get well into spring practice, Kirby ain’t happy with his defensive backfield situation.

… Smart indicated his defensive backs haven’t been challenging themselves mentally, in terms of learning the playbook. Smart will not hesitate in re-shuffling a rotation if needed.

Georgia lacks depth within the unit for the time being, also. The Bulldogs had one early enrollee at defensive back in Divaad Wilson. Wilson, however, tore his ACL after impressing the coaches in the first couple of practices. More signees will be welcomed into the fold during the summer when Tyson Campbell, Nadab Joseph and Chris Smith enroll with the program.

“It’s their time and they have to step up or they’ll be replaced by the people coming in,” Smart said. “We’re not playing really well at those positions, and I would understand it if these guys were on scout team last year and didn’t get reps. Because of our depth issues, most of the guys were our backups and didn’t have to play last year, but took reps. We’re not where we need to be.”

This comes overall in the context of an indoor scrimmage with which Smart proclaimed himself to be encouraged…

“We were able to have a really good, upbeat scrimmage,” Smart said. “I regret not getting the elements from the scrimmage, the hot, the cold. … That part, not having heat or not having humidity, it made it a little bit easier to be honest with you. But it was upbeat, good popping, good hitting, good competition, especially on special teams and on offense and defense. I thought it was really competitive.”

… so my thought is that if I were Tyson Campbell, I can’t wait for my ass to get in August practice.  Sounds like the door is wide open at least to crack the two-deep for the opener.

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Rewarded for his noble sacrifice

Fulmer’s about to get a multi-year deal from UT that will pay him somewhere in the neighborhood of $900 thou a year, but it’s the spin that makes it special.

Stepping up during his alma mater’s desperate time of need, with national public backlash and punchlines surrounding Currie’s failed search rampant, Fulmer – in short order – not only hired Jeremy Pruitt away from Alabama to be the Vols’ next head coach, but did so while earning a salary far below what is typical for an athletic director atop a program the scale of Tennessee’s and roughly half of Currie’s seven-figure pact.

He engineered a palace coup for peanuts, in other words.  Such is greatness in Knoxville.

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Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange, The Glass is Half Fulmer