I agree with Kirby that after six games, pointing to Georgia’s relative youth isn’t much of an excuse any more, but as an explanation for how those games were managed, it does have value.
Georgia is one of the youngest teams in America this season. The Bulldogs’ roster consists of 68.5 percent freshmen and sophomores. That’s the youngest in the SEC and 15th youngest in the country, according to UGA Sports Communication.
The Bulldogs are currently starting two freshmen on the offensive line in right tackle Isaiah Wilson (a redshirt) and right guard Cade Mays. They may start a third today if sophomore Solomon Kindley (knee) is unable to go at left guard.
On defense, true freshman Tyson Campbell of Plantation, Fla., has started every game at left cornerback. True freshman Brenton Cox is D’Andre Walker’s primary backup at outside linebacker.
Meanwhile, Jake Camarda, a freshman from Norcross, has started every game at punter.
The games have been managed. Georgia has grinded its way to sizeable leads, playing defense with the primary purpose of guarding against big plays. It’s worked and it’s also allowed the coaches to get plenty of players, young ‘uns in particular, credible amounts of game time.
Now comes the first big test of playing in a hostile environment from the kids. And youth is no excuse any more.
“Football fields are the same length at LSU and South Carolina and Missouri and everything else,” Smart said earlier this week.
13 responses to ““But the field’s going to be the same.””
I think the coaches have done an admirable job dealing with a young roster knowing that they were a lot better than the first 6 opponents. I think they’ve focused on reps and teaching more than maximizing outcomes.
Tomorrow I say they “unleash the kraken” and LSU gets a beatdown. Dawgs by 24 in a game that doesn’t feel that close.
I agree. Also, perhaps Kirby consulted Mr Conventional Wisdom before relaying that quote.
If we beat them by 24 … my God, I will Believe.
The very thought!
I would say ‘Hear! Hear!’ but a few fairly important claws of our kraken’s claws are missing (do kraken have claws?)
Because of an earlier post by the Senator, I saw the 2013 game was available on YouTube, so I have watched it the past couple of days. This game will be different, for sure, but the home crowd in that game (us) was a huge difference that we won’t have in BR. This year’s defense will be better – in the second half of the 2013 game I started counting the number of times our D was confused and out of position, and quit after I got to 7. In fact, we probably don’t win that game if Mettenberger doesn’t overthrow a TD pass to a completely open receiver. I guess our confusion confused Mettenberg. Gurley also went down early, and never returned, and all we had was Keith Marshall and Quayvon Hicks so the running game was mainly just to keep the D from playing completely back. Chris Conley, Artie Lynch and Justin Scott-Wesley helped close the deal. Also, Odell Beckham(!) muffed a punt that helped us a lot.
The crowd will be a factor against us, but I think we dance with what brung us, partly because some kids are still learning. I can’t see us not running the ball often, using fresh legs and an O-line that is a little at pancaking than pass protection. Defense bends, but doesn’t break much.
Ask the chicken fans in SC how the home crowd helped them win the game against Georgia. They thought the heat and SANDSTORM!!! would be the undoing of a young Georgia team, they were wrong.
I think the big stage helps our young team focus more than playing a sacrificial lamb.
Im Mike Cooley and I approve this message.
I mean it had to be done.
EXACTLY what I thought of. Beat me to it.
I know most people here don’t care to hear about Mark Richt, but he referenced this exact scene in his weekly press conference a few days ago and I thought it was pretty funny.
You know what Kirby says could very well be true – if teams tend to take on the personality of their head coach, perhaps this team is not intimidated by hostile atmospheres because they, like their coach, see it as just another football field.
I tend to think this is the case. CKS is all about business and that’s how his players talk.
Excuse me if I don’t concede the outcome of a game to the building where it’s played. I heard all summer about how our young roster would wilt at Williams-Brice. I’ll be the first to eat crow if I’m wrong but I believe the Dawgs roll.
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