On Air Now

Listen Now

Weather

cloudy-day
68°
Sct Thunderstorms
H 82° L 66°
  • cloudy-day
    68°
    Current Conditions
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 82° L 66°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
    81°
    Afternoon
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 82° L 66°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
    77°
    Evening
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 82° L 66°
Listen
Pause
Error

Morning show on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Listen
Pause
Error

Home team on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Listen
Pause
Error

The crossover

00:00 | 00:00

Georgia Sports News

    ATHENS Now comes the hard part. So says Georgia athletic director Greg McGarity with the return of college football underway across the country. 'We have one chance to get this right and we all know what happens if we don't get it right, it certainly pushes us back to the way things are right now,' McGarity said on the Bulldogs Game Day program. RELATED: Kirby Smart discusses Georgia's return to campus 'So we've got to be careful, we've got to do our due diligence, we've got to do a tremendous educational job not only for our staff, but our student athletes, for his new world.' SEC commissioner Greg Sankey announced that the league's new world on campus can begin as early as June 8 with voluntary workouts on campus. RELATED: SEC presidents' vote, what it means for Georgia football The football coaches will not be allowed to oversee the workouts, but the programs' strength and conditioning staff will be permitted to supervise. What next? DawgNation Friday Night Mike 1. Uniform football start College programs' return to campus for workouts vary, but the start date for football practices overseen by coaches is expected to be uniform. The Big Ten is allowing its schools to return to campus at their own discretion, Nebraska among the early returners on the first eligibile date, June 1. The SEC has announced a June 8 date, and the Big 12 schools can return as early as June 15. The conference commissioners have agreed on a six-week training camp in effect by mid-July with an on-time season start date in mind. UGA officials have discussed among many possibilities quarantining the coaches and players on campus during a two-introductory phase. McGarity pointed out there is much to be determined. 'It's only the first step and there are many details still to be determined on every campus,' McGarity said. 'We'll certainly be driven by the medical community and our sports medicine staff led by (director of sports medicine) Ron Courson.' The NCAA oversight committee had recommended the six weeks of preparation before the season. 2. Fans in the stands The most fluid element of college football's return also figures to be the most controversial, with impassioned fans holding their collective breath as in-person attendance remains in limbo. Georgia, like every other program, has been considering several models with any sort of final decision still weeks way and almost completely at the mercy of the status of the COVID-19 pandemic. Ohio State announced last week it was considering a social-distanced model of 20,000 to 22,000 fans in its 102,000-seat football coliseum. Georgia is considering several attendance models that would take into consideration various COVID-19 conditions and circumstances, using a similar formula to Ohio State from approximately 18,000 on up. The question is, how would the tickets be distributed beyond essential personnel needed for sideline and stadium operations? Major donors, parents of players, recruits and students would seem to be at the forefront of the line in terms of ticket priority. Many scenarios and models are being worked on. 3. Georgia athletes' testing The SEC provided minimum guidelines for its 14-member schools upon announcing the league's June 8 start date with coaching restriction. SEC provides blueprint for team's return A league-appointed 'Medical Guidance Task Force,' which includes top pubic health, infectious disease and sports medicine professionals from across the league, plans a 3-stage screening process and testing symptomatic team members. Georgia's plan, however, takes it a step further and involves COVID testing and the medical evaluations on all student-athletes. The obvious question is what happens when a player or players test positive? How will the quarantine process work? McGarity said early on the key words would be 'testing, tracing and treatment,' but until it plays out, there are questions. Players who test positive will likely have their identities withheld by the school under HIPAA guidelines. The value of the UGA sports scholarship has never been more evident, as the programs need not cut any corners because of the $105 million available in the schools' reserve fund. Only 41 percent of FBS programs have a reserve fund, and many have announced cuts and furloughs, some schools eliminating athletics programs. DawgNation College Football Offseason SEC presidents make it official, looking ahead to June 8 return RELATED: 5 keys, NCAA vote on Wednesday includes pivotal provisions College football return takes turn out West NCAA president Mark Emmert discusses issues with return to campus Les Miles says college football set for return, expert says no fans in stands Return of college football critical to fans' psyche, pocketbooks UGA president Jere Morehead employs 9 research groups for optimal return NCAA advances ball on name, image, likeness player compensation States opening equates to flickering light for college football return Greg Sankey hasn't ruled out a CFB season without all conferences Three keys amid college football return process, from Greg Sankey NCAA board of governors votes unanimously in favor of NIL compensation The post WATCH 3 things: What's next for college football return appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Georgia football is the No. 1 topic every day on DawgNation Daily the daily podcast for Georgia Bulldogs fans. Catch up on everything happening with UGA athletics with host Brandon Adams and the DawgNation experts as they break down the latest Georgia football recruiting news and discuss coach Kirby Smart's quest to return the Bulldogs to the top of the SEC. On episode No. 1,201 (May 24, 2020) of the podcast, Georgia fans can hear a discussion about why not all the hype growing around new UGA quarterback Jamie Newman is a bad thing even for Bulldogs coach Kirby Smart, who usually goes out of his way to downplay excessive media attention. Georgia football podcast: An example of Jamie Newman hype that Kirby Smart probably likes Beginning of the show: Georgia coach Kirby Smart typically goes out of his way to downplay hype for his team, his players and himself. He seemingly views excessive media attention as an unnecessary distraction that could detract from the goals UGA sets for itself. However, when it comes to battling programs such as Alabama and Clemson on the recruiting trail and their substantial national brands it seems safe to say not all hype is a bad thing. I'll share an example of some good hype for new UGA quarterback Jamie Newman on today's show. 10-minute mark: I discuss another interesting compliment for Newman given by a well-known quarterback coach this week on the Paul Finebaum Show. 15-minute mark: DawgNation's recruiting insider Jeff Sentell joins the show. Some of the topics covered include The latest on four-star tight end Brock Bowers An update on four-star pass rusher Dallas Turner An update on the nation's No. 1 player, defensive end Korey Foreman And the latest on five-star cornerback Tony Grimes 35-minute mark: I share other headlines from around the SEC including the SEC's vote to allow players to begin voluntarily returning to campus and a PSA featuring Alabama coach Nick Saban that went viral this week. 40-minute mark: I mock the growing number of analysts who've made their case for Florida winning the SEC East. End of show: I share the Gator Hater Updater. DawgNation Daily Episode 1201: An example of Jamie Newman hype that Kirby Smart probably likes The post Georgia football podcast: An example of Jamie Newman hype that Kirby Smart probably likes appeared first on DawgNation.
  • It's been interesting to see how the newspapers I read regularly have chosen to deal with the lack of sports during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Athens Banner-Herald has done away with its sports section for the duration; what sports stories it runs (mostly about what the future holds for the UGA football program), are in the news pages. USA Today has kept its sports section, spending a lot of time discussing what the sports landscape might look like later this year. And, the AJC also has kept its sports section, much of which has been devoted to nostalgic looks back at local teams' triumphs, like the Braves' World Series-winning season. The AJC also has been running a series of columns from its various sports staffers, in which they recount the five most memorable games they have covered in their careers. The articles have been fun reading, covering quite a wide variety of sports (with Georgia football well represented). That put me to thinking about the five most memorable games I've attended. I won't say 'covered,' because, although I've been blogging about Georgia football for 15 seasons, that's always been as a fan, not a reporter. I wasn't a sportswriter during my career with the AJC, and I only ever participated in covering one football game in my career, for The Red & Black student paper at UGA. That was the Sept. 15, 1973, season opener in Athens against the Pitt Panthers. The Dogs were a 17-point favorite, but the Panthers had a running back making his collegiate debut that day named Tony Dorsett, and he rushed for 101 yards as the two teams played to a 7-7 tie. I'd been managing editor of The Red & Black that summer, and all of the paper's student staff wasn't back yet, since school hadn't started (UGA began classes much later in those days), so the sports editor asked me to help out with the coverage. It was the only regular season game I've ever watched from the press box, an experience I didn't particularly enjoy, since you weren't supposed to cheer. After the game, I did the locker room interviews with a disappointed bunch of Dawgs. 'We just never could get going,' my old Athens High classmate Andy Johnson told me. 'We didn't underestimate them. We knew they would be good, but I don't know, I guess we just weren't ready.' So, yeah, it was one of the most memorable games ever for me, in terms of how I experienced it, but not a great outcome. Likewise, the Oct. 22, 1977, homecoming game certainly was one of the most memorable ever, with Prince Charles in attendance (the Georgia student section chanted 'Damn good prince!') and James Brown performing with the Redcoats at halftime (with my brother Jonathan underneath the stage, bracing it with his back as the Godfather of Soul did his splits). But, the game itself was one of the worst ever in Athens, a 33-0 loss to Kentucky. (I believe that might have been the game where an irate Vince Dooley pushed over a row of lockers at halftime in frustration.) The 21-10 win to end the losing streak against Tennessee in 2000 also was memorable. The atmosphere was unforgettable, as the Sanford Stadium crowd sensed victory and massed around the field, but while fans taking down the goalposts after the game was understandable, the fact that some of them then trashed their own stadium, ripping up the hedges, was an act so mindless that I still don't understand it. So, that one stays off the list. I also was at the basketball game in the Georgia Coliseum on March 8, 1969, when 'Pistol Pete' Maravich scored 58 points. With LSU ahead by 8 in the second overtime, Maravich dribbled around Bulldogs defenders for about a minute, putting on a show, then launched a 35-foot hook shot at the buzzer for a 90-80 win. Georgia fans, appreciative of the amazing performance they'd just seen, mobbed him on the floor. But, again, it was a Georgia loss. So, stipulating that I want my five most memorable games to be Dawgs wins, that sent me back to a listing of the greatest games my brothers and I ever have attended. We first compiled it shortly after I started the Junkyard Blawg in 2005, and I updated it in 2009 and 2017, to add additional games. The most recent version offered a baker's dozen of the greatest games I'd seen, and, believe me, it was tough narrowing it down to those. Picking the five most memorable? Even tougher. Still, here goes, ranking them in ascending order, like the AJC series did. (Keep in mind, this is limited to games I saw in person. My list doesn't include some of Georgia's greatest wins games that I watched on TV or listened to on radio, including the upset of Michigan in Ann Arbor, 'Run, Lindsay!' in Jacksonville, the national championship win over Notre Dame in New Orleans and the 'hobnail boot' game in Knoxville.) 5. Georgia over Georgia Tech, 30-24, Nov. 28, 2009:Frankly, I was dreading attending this one when my son Bill decided to take me to my first game at Grant Field in decades, but the lightly-regarded Dawgs ran it down the throats of a Jackets team that ended up winning the ACC Championship. This was the original 'We run this state' game. The looks on the faces of the Tech fans on the walk back to the North Avenue MARTA station afterward were priceless. 4. Georgia over Clemson, 27-12, Oct. 5, 1991:Recently replayed on WSB radio, this was one of the high points of the Ray Goffyears (and there weren't many), as the Dawgs upset the No. 6 Tigers, who went on to win the ACC Championship, in a night game on national TV. Key plays were Georgia safety Mike Jones stripping the ball after a Clemson back had run 54 yards, and quarterback Eric Zeier setting up a TD with a 59-yard bomb to Arthur Marshall. This also was the day the Braves clinched the division title that began their celebrated run under Bobby Cox.When the Braves score was announced after the football game, Georgia and Clemson fans chopped and chanted together. Unforgettable. 3. Georgia over Auburn, 45-20, Nov. 10, 2007:The first 'Blackout' game. I don't think I've ever seen a Sanford Stadium crowd as excited as when the Dawgs burst through that banner in those black jerseys. Still, the Tigers made it a game, taking a 20-17 lead, before a Georgia team featuring Matthew Stafford and Knowshon Moreno scored 28 unanswered points, and wound up dancing to Soulja Boy. 2. Georgia over Alabama, 21-0, Oct. 2, 1976:The outcome of the game between the No. 6 Bulldogs and the No. 10 Crimson Tide never really was in question, and the Sanford Stadium crowd smelled the Bear's blood from the start. This was the loudest I ever heard a Sanford crowd until they enclosed the east end of the stadium. Matt Robinson and Ray Goff alternated running Georgia's veer option offense, and Erk Russell's Junkyard Dogs defense held Bama's vaunted wishbone attack to just 49 yards rushing. Manhandling Bama, which was coming off five straight conference crowns, just wasn't done in those days. This game was one of the toughest tickets ever in Athens. Folks camped out overnight on the tracks, and my Dad had to watch from the Sanford Drive bridge. The postgame celebration in Athens was wild, with police having to close Milledge Avenue. 1. Georgia over Alabama, 18-17, Sept. 18, 1965: This was back during a period when Alabama was our opening game, and the last time the Dogs had won was during the 1959 SEC championship season with Fran Tarkenton. After that, the whippings by the Tide had become somewhat expected. N ot many folks gave the Dawgs much of a chance against the defending national champion Tide at the beginning of Dooley's second season. But, the Dawgs were hanging tough and behind only 17-10 in the fourth quarter. I'd gone to get a Coke and was walking back to my seat when I heard a guy I knew casually from school say to his father, 'The Bear better do something, or Bama could lose this thing.' I'm not sure if he was happy or sad about that, but, sure enough, moments later came the legendary flea-flicker pass from Kirby Moore to Pat Hodgson to Bob Taylor. And then, with the 2-point play pass to Hodgson, Georgia had one of its most unexpected wins ever, especially considering the Tide went on to take another AP national title that year. So, those are five memorable games I've seen in person. Are they the most memorable? Well, yeah, but, ask me tomorrow, and you might get a slightly different listing. After all, they don't come much more memorable than the 2013 UGA-LSU shootout featuring former roomies Aaron Murray and Zach Mettenberger (the loudest game I've ever experienced at Sanford Stadium) or the butt-kicking of Nick Saban's defending national champion LSU Tigers in 2004 (featuring f ive touchdown throws by David Greene ) or that spine-tingling moment last year when the stadium was lit-up all red at the beginning of the fourth quarter of yet another Georgia win over Notre Dame, or Yeah, I've seen a lot of memorable games. The post It's not easy to narrow down my five most memorable UGA games appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Jamaree Salyer couldn't have had a much better end to the 2019 season than he did for the Georgia Bulldogs. He made his first career start in the Sugar Bowl and played well as the Bulldogs came away with a 26-14 win over Baylor. That performance should that he could possibly hold up as a starting tackle for the Bulldogs, something they desperately need for the 2020 season, as Andrew Thomas and Isaiah Wilson are both now off to the NFL. Wilson, Thomas and Solomon Kindley all spoke highly of Salyer while speaking at the NFL combine, as the two tackles expect him to be a leader on Georgia's offensive line this coming season. 'They're young kids but they work so hard,' Solomon Kindley said of Salyer and Trey Hill. 'They're leaders and if you go around them, they have great character. If you go around them, you'd think they're one of us. Related: Jamaree Salyer and his playing time explain why Georgia offensive line is one of the nation's best Salyer hasn't gotten a chance to showcase his improvements on the field just yet, but he has turned a lot of heads with his workouts. He's even dropped weight, as he's under 315 pounds, at least 10 pounds less than what he played the 2019 season at. And it has gotten the attention of his head coach, Kirby Smart. I can see abs in his future Coach Kirby Smart (@KirbySmartUGA) May 20, 2020 The Bulldogs need Salyer to be not just a leader but also one of the best offensive linemen on the 2020 team. Replacing Thomas and Wilson, two first-round picks, won't be easy. But so far this offseason, Salyer has shown that he'll be up to the task of being a starting offensive tackle for the Bulldogs in 2020. More Georgia football stories from around DawgNation WATCH: Georgia basketball look ahead, how Tom Crean's building another winner Kirby Smart reveals thoughts on return, Georgia outlines voluntary workout transition plan Why aggressiveness, not athleticism, could mark the most important difference between Jamie Newman and Jake Fromm HEDGES: The rival programs looming as the big hurdles for Georgia recruiting in 2021 Brock Bowers: Nation's No. 3 TE knows what he'd like to do before his decision Former UGA greats Roquan Smith and Lorenzo Carter are helping in recruitment of key prospects Athlon Sports Top 25 football preview explains why Florida ahead of Georgia Update: DeAndre Baker legal issues tangled, libel and slander case pending Where Georgia football 2021 recruiting commitments and targets rank after latest updates The post Jamaree Salyer has been one of the big winners of Georgia's offseason appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Tom Crean is well known for his Xs and Os and uptempo teams, and Georgia's 2020 basketball recruiting class makes it clear there are no plans to slow down. The Bulldogs are coming off a 16-16 season that saw the team peak the final night with an 18-point win over Ole Miss in the SEC Men's Basketball Tournament in Nashville. RELATED: Georgia pounds Ole Miss, aims for Florida in SEC tourney The next day, March 12, the college sports world shutdown amid the coronavirus pandemic. Crean and his team were left wondering what might have been. The Bulldogs have made just one NCAA tournament appearance the last nine years (2015). Crean, who rebuilt Marquette into a Final Four team and rebuilt Indiana into a two-time Big Ten champion knows UGA remains a work in progress. Crean inherited a mess two years ago. A vacuum existed among six returning seniors after star Yante Maten took his leadership and scoring with him to the NBA. Three other players served disciplinary suspensions or have been dismissed from the program. The sole shining star was Nicolas Claxton, and he improved so much under Crean in one season that he went to the NBA following his sophomore year. This rebuild is such that just one player remains from that 2018-19 team. RELATED: Tom Izzo shares insight into his former assistant, Tom Crean UGA appears to be a refreshed and recharged program moving in the right direction. Georgia has a solid nucleus to build around with players like freshman assists record holder Sahvir Wheeler, junior guard Tye Fagan and sophomore power forward Toumani Camara returning. The players are eligible to return to campus as early as June 8 after the SEC presidents voted on Friday to give the green light to players wanting to return to practices for voluntary workouts. The basketball team's plans are currently being evaluated. Look back The 2019-20 campaign saw Georgia set a single-season attendance record in Stegman Coliseum that included marquee home wins over Tennessee and Auburn. On the road, Crean's Bulldogs scored only the second non-conference road victory over a Top 25 team in program history, beating Memphis. And now, another reload is underway, with projected NBA lottery pick Anthony Edwards moving on. RELATED: Georgia's 'Antman' declares for NBA draft, stock soaring Junior power forward Rayshaun Hammonds also elected to leave early, though his professional status is considerably less certain. Crean is looking forward, his roster now void of any players recruited by former coach Mark Fox. 'What I want is a team that can switch, a team that can play multiple ways,' Crean told DawgNation during the Ingles On The Beat show last Monday night. 'We don't need to get anyone that will slow us down or clog that lane. We have to get to the basketball, but we have to be able to run.' No doubt, Georgia has scored 90 or more points 11 times in Crean's two seasons. Prior to his arrival, the Bulldogs had scored 90 or more points in 11 times in 11 seasons. 'We were second in the country in transition points, we were third in the country at points at the rim, and yet we shot 30 percent from three,' Crean points out. 'You look at some of the games we had, if you had another 3-point make, or two more 3-pointers and I'm not talking about manufacturing threes, I'm talking about making the open threes that we had that's four or five more wins right there.' Georgia could be that close to the bubble again the season, but they'll need to rely on newcomers once again. Experienced recruits Once season after reloading with 10 newcomers and the No. 5-ranked signing class in the county, the Bulldogs are poised with seven more new players. Georgia most recently added Andrew Garcia, a 6-foot-5, 228-pound shooting guard who figures to add scoring punch and muscle to a team that will need to grow up in a hurry. Garcia is the second graduate transfer in the class, joining George Mason transfer Justin Kier (6-4, 197) on what looks to be another very versatile team. '(Kier) is gonna be a combination guard that can handle it and that can score,' Crean said. 'He'll be comfortable bringing the ball up the floor, or be comfortable having the ball thrown ahead to him.' Crean said this Georgia team will need to grow up fast, and that's likely why he's adding two graduate transfers and two junior college transfers, as well. Jonathan Ned is a 6-9 inside-out forward from Eastern Florida State junior college that shot 48-percent from beyond the 3-point line last season. 'We need Jonathan to come in and make threes,' Crean said. 'We need him to drive the ball, rebound and defend his position, but we also need him to make open jump shots.' Mikal Starks (6-0 guard) is another Eastern Florida State junior college transfer 'I think he's a highly competitive leadership guy, he's a winner, he competes, he fights, he's quick and he can get to the basket,' Crean said. 'I think he's going to be a good shooter for us, and I think that's important.' Georgia also has a commitment from Tyron McMillian, a 6-8, 225-pounder from Kilgore, Texas. McMillan is ranked the No. 11 junior college player in the nation. Incoming freshmen K.D. Johnson is a 6-1, top 100 signee out of Hargrave Military Academy High School the Crean believes will have an immediate impact. 'K.D. is a high, high level competitor,' Crean said. 'He's a two-way guy that picks the ball up full court, he'll hawk you, he'll fight you. 'He plays with a high motor, he plays to win, and I love his fearlessness.' Crean said Johnson will take on anybody at the rim, though he expects the talented prospect will quickly adjust to the SEC competition level. 'Sometimes he thinks he's going to go score on the 6-10, 6-11 guy, and I think he's going to have to make the growth of how to get to the other side of the rim and make the kick out (pass),' Crean said. 'But he passes the ball well, when he's locked in and stepping into his shot he's making it consistently. 'I love his track mentality, and I love the fact that he loves the game. Anthony Edwards is like that. You want guys that want to be in the gym making themselves better.' Josh Taylor is another incoming freshman, a 6-8, 195-pounder out of Norcross. 'Josh works around the bucket and he's a very good rebounder,' Crean said. 'He wants to get better as a shooter and driver but he rebounds the ball, he runs both ends and he wants to compete.' Future profile Crean plans to keep with his uptempo style, and he's hoping to develop more toughness and see leaders step up in tight games. That was something that was missing at times the past two seasons. 'Some of those games last season, we couldn't stop the runs because we couldn't stop the bleeding,' Crean said. 'We couldn't go in and get a bucket inside, or we couldn't just say we're going to get an And One. ''We had some maturity leadership issues with that when it was time to get it settled down.' Crean said it's something he needs to recruit to, and he feels good about what Georgia has in the works with a class currently ranked No. 29. 'You can't put a value on people that can settle your team down and bring them confidence on the floor,' Crean said. 'And it isn't always the point guard, and it isn't always the oldest guy. 'Anybody can change momentum inside a game, but very few can bring a lot of confidence every day to a team. Your job as s coach is to develop it and recruit it, and it's imperative you find those people.' Tom Crean May 18, 2020 DawgNation Georgia basketball Bulldogs upset Ole Miss in SEC tourney opener LSU beats Georgia in regular-season finale Georgia basketball goes cold in loss to Florida Anthony Edwards takes over final minute, UGA topples Arkansas WATCH: Georgia celebrates like crazy after Vandy win Bulldogs score resounding win over No. 13 Auburn Georgia basketball drops close one at Texas A&M, Anthony Edwards ill Georgia suffers deflating defeat at Florida UGA snaps four-game losing streak with Texas A&M win Perplexing loss for Georgia basketball at Missouri Georgia comes up short in hard-fought loss at Kentucky Freshman Anthony Edwards discloses injury, status Sahvir Wheeler on clutch game-winner, 'been there a ton of times' Anthony Edwards lights up Michigan State for 37 in 93-85 loss Rayshaun Hammonds wrecks Georgia Tech Anthony Edwards draws standing ovation in opener The post WATCH: Georgia basketball look ahead, how Tom Crean's building another winner appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia football coach Kirby Smart and university leadership made it clear the Bulldogs' program is committed to a safe return when players get back on campus on June 8. 'We're excited to now know when players can begin returning to campus,' Smart said in a statement released on Friday afternoon, hours after the SEC announced the league presidents' vote. RELATED: SEC presidents clear way for voluntary on-campus workouts, Georgia set for return 'We'll be coordinating our efforts with the medical staff keeping the primary focus on health and safety of our student-athletes and those working directly with them at this time.' Smart and his coaching staff will not be allowed to supervise or gather information on the workouts. The players' return is voluntary and can only be overseen by the strength and conditioning staff. Georgia features one of the most respected strength and conditioning coaches in the nation in Scott Sinclair. Sinclair, like Smart, enters his fifth year in the program. RELATED: Scott Sinclair keys positive culture shift in Kirby Smart Era Smart said UGA will be working to implement the return of the players in the coming days amid the COVID-19 pandemic that has sidelined collegiate sports since the winter sports championships were canceled on March. 12. 'I'm sure they are looking forward to returning to begin working toward what we hope is a regular season in the fall,' said Smart, himself once quarantined for two weeks after returning with his family from a vacation in Central America last March. Week Two Update: Coronavirus self-quarantines include Kirby Smart Georgia is scheduled to start the season against Virginia on Sept. 7 in Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. SEC commissioner Greg Sankey has been holding calls with the league athletic directors on an almost daily basis, and weekly conference calls with SEC league presidents and chancellors leading up to Friday's announcement. RELATED: SEC provides medical task force blueprint' for return Sankey says his focus is on starting the season on time, though he has said the COVID-19 recovery will ultimately set the timeline. UGA athletic director Greg McGarity acknowledged in his statement the return to campus is only a beginning. 'It's only the first step and there are many details still to be determined on every campus,' McGarity said. 'We'll certainly be driven by the medical community and our sports medicine staff led by Ron Courson. 'Guidelines and enhanced health and safety measures will be followed to the letter. Again, this is only the first step with further details and plans coming over the next several days and weeks.' The conference commissioners have agreed on a six-week training camp in effect by mid-July if the season is to start on time. The six weeks had been recommended by the NCAA oversight committee. Courson, Georgia's globally-renowned director of medicine since 1995, is part of the SEC-appointed Medical Guidance Task Force.' 'The great work of the SEC Medical Guidance Task Force, which included Ron Courson, provided the Presidents with thoughtful analysis which helped inform our decision,' said UGA president Jere Morehead, who added that the vote to return on June 8 was unanimous. Courson, who a year ago to the date helped save the life of UGA redshirt freshman quarter D'Wan Mathis, provided an outline of UGA's voluntary work-out and transition plan summary as follows: RELATED: Mind Game, D'Wan Mathis overcoming brain surgery, eager to compete The approval of 'voluntary work-outs' is the first step back in an orderly progression for the return of sports, as follows: First and foremost, our focus is on health and safety. We are taking a collaborative approach that involves public health, community health care system, sports medicine, sports performance, sports nutrition, and sport coaches working together to develop a plan and ensure each student-athlete has a individualized plan for return. We will conduct COVID testing and perform medical evaluations on all student-athletes and they must be medically cleared prior to any physical activity. We will identify any student-athletes and staff who may be more vulnerable due to existing health conditions and ensure that we have an individualized plan of care for their safe return to sport or work based upon medical guidance. Our student-athletes have had an unprecedented lay-off from sports and we have to be smart about how we progress back to activity during this 'transition period'. Our strength and conditioning return to sport plan will be based off national consensus guidelines developed by a joint task force with representatives from the National Strength and Conditioning Association and the Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coaches Association. It involves starting with a reduced volume of work and modified work-rest ratios with a gradual increase, allowing the student-athletes to acclimate to both the environment with heat and humidity as well as building up exercise tolerance. We have developed a detailed plan to utilize the strength and conditioning facilities that follows the State of Georgia Executive order for re-opening of exercise facilities, including screening procedures, small groups using social distancing, and enhanced cleaning and disinfection protocols. DawgNation College Football Offseason SEC presidents make it official, looking ahead to June 8 return RELATED: 5 keys, NCAA vote on Wednesday includes pivotal provisions College football return takes turn out West NCAA president Mark Emmert discusses issues with return to campus Les Miles says college football set for return, expert says no fans in stands Return of college football critical to fans' psyche, pocketbooks UGA president Jere Morehead employs 9 research groups for optimal return NCAA advances ball on name, image, likeness player compensation States opening equates to flickering light for college football return Greg Sankey hasn't ruled out a CFB season without all conferences Three keys amid college football return process, from Greg Sankey NCAA board of governors votes unanimously in favor of NIL compensation The post Kirby Smart reveals thoughts on return, Georgia outlines voluntary workout transition plan appeared first on DawgNation.
  • The most recent installment of DawgNation's 'Before the Hedges' weekly live recruiting program called to attention the five biggest programs in the way for the best possible Georgia recruiting class for the 2021 cycle. Given how Kirby Smart and the Bulldogs have been going of late, that would mean another No. 1 national class. If so, that reality would match what the Bulldogs did in claiming the nation's No. 1 class on the 247Sports Team Composite rankings in both 2018 and 2020. Which schools are in the way? We counted them down on 'Hedges' this week. 5. Auburn (Looks to be the biggest rival for the Bulldogs in the chase for 5-star LB Smael Mondon Jr.) 4. Michigan (The Bulldogs are trying to pull 4-star RB Donovan Edwards out of Michigan 3. North Carolina (Tar Heels loom as the top contender to UGA for 5-star CB Tony Grimes) 2. Clemson (Recently offered priority OLB Dallas Turner and are in the final 3 for 5-star S James Williams) 1. Alabama(The Crimson Tide has been the leader for Turner and are major contenders for OT Amarius Mims, LB Xavian Sorey Jr. and 5-star safety James Williams.) Want more detail? Sure you do. Check out the full episode of this week's 'Before the Hedges' below. DAWGNATION 'BEFORE THE HEDGES' Top Targets for 5/20/2020 8.4-star OG Dylan Fairchild (West Forsyth/Cumming, Ga. 7. 4-star OL Terrence Ferguson/Peach County/Fort Valley, Ga. 6. 4-star ILBSmael Mondon Jr./Paulding County/Dallas, Ga. 5. 5-star ILBSmael Mondon Jr./Paulding County/Dallas, Ga. 4.4-star RB Donovan Edwards/West Bloomfield/West Bloomfield, Mich. 3. 5-star OT Amarius Mims/Bleckley County/Cochran, Ga. 2. 5-star S James Williams/American Heritage/Plantation, Fla. 1. 5-star CB Tony Grimes/Princess Anne/Virginia Beach, Va. The 'Hedges' program extends its weekly 'top targets' feature out to 13 names in the embedded video streams above. 2021 Georgia commits Current national ranking: No. 20 overall (7 commitments) (All ratings from the 247Sports Composite) (Includes change in overall ranking from the 5/13/20 edition of 'Before the Hedges') 5-star QB Brock Vandagriff/Prince Avenue Christian/Bogart, Ga. 6-3/205/Nation's No. 2 dual-threat QB/No. 12 overall (No change) 4-star Micah Morris/Camden County/Kingsland, Ga. 6-5/325/Nation's No. 7 OT/No. 61 overall (No change) 4-star ATH David Daniel/Woodstock HS/Woodstock, Ga. 6-2/193/Nation's No. 4 ATH/No. 84 overall (Up 3 spots overall) 4-star RB Lovasea Carroll/IMG Academy/Bradenton, Fla. 6-1/199/Nation's No. 7 RB/No. 118 overall (Up 5 spots overall) 4-star DE Jonathan Jefferson (Projects to DT) 6-4/270/Nation's No. 14 SDE and No. 145 overall (Down 1 spot overall) 4-star OLB Elijah Jeudy 6-3/244/Nation's No. 10 weak-side DE and No. 167 overall (Down 4 spots overall) 3-star DT Marlin Dean/Elbert County/Elberton, Ga. 6-5 and 265/Nation's No. 35 DT/No. 449 overall (Down 17 spots overall) DAWGNATION RECRUITING (the recent reads on DawgNation.com) Brock Bowers: The nation's No. 3 TE knows what he would like to do before his college decision De'Jahn Warren: The real nuggets to know about the nation's No. 1 JUCO prospect Elite cornerback Marquise Groves-Killebrew is a 'No. 1 priority' for 2022 Moliki Matavao: Nation's No. 4 TE releases his commitment date Decrypting that recent tweet from 5-star LB Smael Mondon Jr. Prince Kollie: The ILB target who had 1,085 yards as a receiver in 2019 Lovasea Carroll: DawgNation goes one-on-one with the 2021 RB commit Dylan Fairchild: Elite O-line target includes UGA among his top six schools What exactly are these virtual recruiting visits like right now? How the 2021 commits turned a slick edit into Amarius Mims Appreciation Day Dallas Turner: Why Alabama has a slight lead on UGA for the elite pass rusher HEDGES: Why James Williams looms so large for the 2021 Georgia class Georgia's program is now moving past the de-commitments of previous cycles Georgia extends an impactful offer to future 5-star RB Richard Young The 5 things you haven't read yet about recent OLB commit Elijah Jeudy Georgia OL commit Micah Morris made a silent pledge to UGA quite a long time ago The post HEDGES: The programs looming as the big hurdles for Georgia recruiting in 2021 appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS The SEC included guidances and best practices for student-athletes and support personnel to adhere to once the football and basketball players return to campus on June 8. Coaches will not be allowed to supervise nor garner reports on the student-athletes' activity through the month of June. NCAA regulations allow only strength and conditioning coaches to supervise the workouts. RELATED: SEC presidents' vote triggers Georgia players' return June 8 There is a waiver, however, that allows eight hours of virtual film review through June 30 for football and basketball. The league presidents and chancellors appointed a ' Return to Activity and Medical Guidance Task Force,' in April. It's a group made up of top public health, infectious disease and sports medicine professionals from across the SEC's 14 schools. Per the SEC release, In addition to standard infection prevention measures as approved by public health authorities such as facility cleaning and social distancing, recommended enhanced health and safety measures include: Enhanced education of all team members on health and wellness best practices, including but not limited to preventing the spread of COVID-19 A 3-stage screening process that involves screening before student-athletes arrive on campus, within 72 hours of entering athletics facilities and on a daily basis upon resumption of athletics activities Testing of symptomatic team members (including all student-athletes, coaches, team support and other appropriate individuals) Immediate isolation of team members who are under investigation or diagnosed with COVID-19 followed by contact tracing, following CDC and local public health guidelines A transition period that allows student-athletes to gradually adapt to full training and sport activity following a period of inactivity SEC commissioner Greg Sankey has said since the onset of the COVID-19 crises, as far back as March 12, that the league would prioritize the safety of the student-athletes at each step. 'The safe and healthy return of our student-athletes, coaches, administrators and our greater university communities have been and will continue to serve as our guiding principle as we navigate this complex and constantly-evolving situation,' Sankey said in Friday's release. 'At this time, we are preparing to begin the fall sports season as currently scheduled, and this limited resumption of voluntary athletic activities on June 8 is an important initial step in that process. 'Thanks to the blueprint established by our Task Force and the dedicated efforts of our universities and their athletics programs, we will be able to provide our student-athletes with far better health and wellness education, medical and psychological care and supervision than they would otherwise receive on their own while off campus or training at public facilities as states continue to reopen.' UGA director of sports medicine Ron Courson, who one year ago today (May 22) is credited with saving the life of Georgia quarterback D'Wan Mathis, represents UGA in task force. RELATED: Georgia saved my son's life,' D'Wan Mathis update DawgNation College Football Offseason College football return takes turn out West NCAA president Mark Emmert discusses issues with return to campus Les Miles says college football set for return, expert says no fans in stands Return of college football critical to fans' psyche, pocketbooks UGA president Jere Morehead employs 9 research groups for optimal return NCAA advances ball on name, image, likeness player compensation States opening equates to flickering light for college football return Greg Sankey hasn't ruled out a CFB season without all conferences Three keys amid college football return process, from Greg Sankey NCAA board of governors votes unanimously in favor of NIL compensation The post SEC includes task force blueprint' for safe return to campus activity appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS SEC football and basketball players can return to campus for voluntary workouts on June 8 after a vote of league presidents on Friday. ALERT-Voluntary in-person athletics activities may resume on @SEC campuses, at the discretion of each university, beginning June 8 under strict supervision of designated university personnel and safety guidelines developed by each institution. Southeastern Conference (@SEC) May 22, 2020 The NCAA cleared the path for the student-athletes return as early as June 1 on Wednesday when the Division I Council voted to lift a moratorium for on-campus activity that ran through May 31. RELATED: NCAA vote on Wednesday includes pivotal provisions The 40-member council decided in a virtual meeting that Division I football and basketball players could take part in voluntary activities provided they adhere to state and federal provisions and/or guidelines. Per the NCAA release, council members emphasized health and safety aspects, to the extent that reopening campuses ' will be an individual decision but should be based on advice from medical experts,' per council chair M. Grace Calhoun, athletics director at Penn. Coaches cannot attend or direct the voluntary workouts unless there's a safety exemption nor can they receive reports from the activity. Prep work The University of Georgia has been working on the players returning to campus for weeks, since president Jere Morehead appointed nine groups made up of 140 people. 'There will obviously have to be some changes, and there will have to be some precautions,' Morehead said in an April WGAU interview. Morehead said the groups are working in the areas of: workplace safety, instruction, research, public service and outreach, student life, athletics and the fiscal impact. Scott Woodward, the athletic director at defending national football champion LSU, said last week his program was preparing for the June 1 return. 'We are preparing for a June 1 return, even though we don't know that,' Woodward said in a Zoom call that included the Lafayette Daily Advertiser. 'I see some time in June our athletes getting back to campus and us taking care of them and being paramount in safety and health.' Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith said last week the Buckeyes set a potential return date of June 8, per Bucknuts. Next step This, after NCAA president Mark Emmert said he would not legislate a uniform return from conference to conference. RELATED: NCAA preside Mark Emmert addresses uniformity of schools' return While voluntary workouts will resume on campuses across the country at different times, conference commissioners reached a consensus on a six-week training camp in effect by mid-July if the season is to start on time. The six weeks had been recommended by the NCAA oversight committee, as previously reported by DawgNation. The Division I Council said it will address the return of other sports to campus soon, with their respective status' determined by electronic vote. DawgNation College Football Offseason Key for college football return to campus, hurdles still ahead College football return takes turn out West NCAA president Mark Emmert discusses issues with return to campus Les Miles says college football set for return, expert says no fans in stands Return of college football critical to fans' psyche, pocketbooks UGA president Jere Morehead employs 9 research groups for optimal return NCAA advances ball on name, image, likeness player compensation States opening equates to flickering light for college football return Greg Sankey hasn't ruled out a CFB season without all conferences Three keys amid college football return process, from Greg Sankey NCAA board of governors votes unanimously in favor of NIL compensation The post SEC presidents clear voluntary on-campus workouts, Georgia players return June 8 appeared first on DawgNation.
  • In Deshaun Watson's final season at Clemson he threw 17 interceptions. That's more than one per game. That's one less than Jake Fromm threw in his entire Georgia career. And yet, Watson also threw 41 touchdowns in that 2016 season. He did so while leading Clemson to its first national title under Dabo Swinney. Some might say that Watson was careless with the football and lord knows countless draft analysts did so. But that season and performance showed that some times you have to live with the bad to fully enjoy the good. That being aggressive, making riskier throws, sometimes has a large pay-off in the end. And according to the quarterback trainer Quincy Avery of Georgia's new quarterback, Jamie Newman has that same type of aggressive skillset. 'I think he's a really aggressive quarterback. The tight-window throws,' Avery said while appearing on the Paul Finebaum show. 'Jake Fromm is a really amazing quarterback, but he wasn't super aggressive. Jamie is a little different in that aspect. 'He's gonna make some throws where people say ah I'm not sure he can throw that.' But he's got the talent and capabilities to fit into tight windows.' Related: QB trainer details what Georgia is getting in Jamie Newman Many have already remarked that Newman will also bring a different physical skillset to Georgia as well. Newman did rush for 574 yards and six touchdowns a season ago while playing for Wake Forest. Georgia won't ask him to carry the ball nearly as often this season, but it would be wise to have him use the threat of running to open things up on the outside. 'They haven't had a quarterback who can add to the run game and make defense really have to think about QB runs and all the zone-read stuff,' Avery said of Newman. 'And he's got a tremendous arm so he can handle the RPO stuff.' We've been working with some of the best college QBs in the country to make sure when they go back to campus they are sharp as ever. pic.twitter.com/vX91OmB6xs quincy_avery (@Quincy_Avery) May 19, 2020 The 2020 Georgia offense will be under new direction, as Todd Monken takes over as the offensive coordinator. Ultimately though, Kirby Smart will still have some influence on the offense and its direction. And to this point in his career, Smart has wanted his quarterbacks to be risk-averse. There's a reason Smart stuck with Fromm as opposed to more naturally talented passers in Jacob Eason and Justin Fields, who Avery also trains and called, 'the most talented quarterback that I've ever come in contact with.' Even Georgia's governor, Brian Kemp, knows that one of the key things Smart preaches is the importance of not turning the ball over on the offensive side of the ball. Related: Georgia Governor Brian Kemp optimistic' on 2020 season, weighs in on Georgia football offense Fromm didn't make very many mistakes or turnovers during his largely stellar Georgia career. In fact, during the 2019 season, the only games Georgia lost were the ones in which Fromm threw interceptions. But Fromm could've thrown zero interceptions against LSU and it wouldn't have mattered that day. In part because Georgia just wasn't able to make enough big plays in the passing game a season ago. Not all of that falls on Fromm, but he does shoulder some of the blame there. Smart came out after that LSU loss andemphatically put down the notion that he wants to play man-ball and maul teams to death. He said he wanted to score more points. In wanting that though, he might have to take a few more chances in the deep passing game. Scared money doesn't make money, after all. With wide receivers like George Pickens and a potentially healthy Dominick Blaylock, those opportunities could present themselves more often during the 2020 season. And it will be up to Newman to take advantage of those plays. 'He's a big, physical, strong kid. He's 6-3, 225 pounds really good athlete who also makes ridiculous throws,' former Bulldog David Pollack said of Newman while appearing on ESPN's Get Up. 'Now he goes to Georgia with driving a Ferrari.' Newman did throw 11 interceptions in 12 games last year, with six of those coming after the calendar turned to November. Obviously Georgia won't ask him to turn into Nathan Peterman, or even be like Watson. But Georgia is going to need to be more aggressive on the offensive side of the ball. And Newman may be better suited to take those risky shots than Fromm was. More Georgia football stories from around DawgNation Brock Bowers: Nation's No. 3 TE knows what he'd like to do before his decision Former UGA greats Roquan Smith and Lorenzo Carter are helping in recruitment of key prospects Athlon Sports Top 25 football preview explains why Florida ahead of Georgia Update: DeAndre Baker legal issues tangled, libel and slander case pending Where Georgia football 2021 recruiting commitments and targets rank after latest updates Georgia football podcast: Elite RB recruit Donovan Edwards gives UGA cool shoutout De'Jahn Warren: The real nuggets to know about the nation's No. 1 JUCO prospect UGA turns up recruiting heat on 4-star pass rusher Dallas Turner The post Why aggressiveness, not athleticism, could mark the most important difference between Jamie Newman and Jake Fromm appeared first on DawgNation.

Georgia Sports News

  • ATHENS Now comes the hard part. So says Georgia athletic director Greg McGarity with the return of college football underway across the country. 'We have one chance to get this right and we all know what happens if we don't get it right, it certainly pushes us back to the way things are right now,' McGarity said on the Bulldogs Game Day program. RELATED: Kirby Smart discusses Georgia's return to campus 'So we've got to be careful, we've got to do our due diligence, we've got to do a tremendous educational job not only for our staff, but our student athletes, for his new world.' SEC commissioner Greg Sankey announced that the league's new world on campus can begin as early as June 8 with voluntary workouts on campus. RELATED: SEC presidents' vote, what it means for Georgia football The football coaches will not be allowed to oversee the workouts, but the programs' strength and conditioning staff will be permitted to supervise. What next? DawgNation Friday Night Mike 1. Uniform football start College programs' return to campus for workouts vary, but the start date for football practices overseen by coaches is expected to be uniform. The Big Ten is allowing its schools to return to campus at their own discretion, Nebraska among the early returners on the first eligibile date, June 1. The SEC has announced a June 8 date, and the Big 12 schools can return as early as June 15. The conference commissioners have agreed on a six-week training camp in effect by mid-July with an on-time season start date in mind. UGA officials have discussed among many possibilities quarantining the coaches and players on campus during a two-introductory phase. McGarity pointed out there is much to be determined. 'It's only the first step and there are many details still to be determined on every campus,' McGarity said. 'We'll certainly be driven by the medical community and our sports medicine staff led by (director of sports medicine) Ron Courson.' The NCAA oversight committee had recommended the six weeks of preparation before the season. 2. Fans in the stands The most fluid element of college football's return also figures to be the most controversial, with impassioned fans holding their collective breath as in-person attendance remains in limbo. Georgia, like every other program, has been considering several models with any sort of final decision still weeks way and almost completely at the mercy of the status of the COVID-19 pandemic. Ohio State announced last week it was considering a social-distanced model of 20,000 to 22,000 fans in its 102,000-seat football coliseum. Georgia is considering several attendance models that would take into consideration various COVID-19 conditions and circumstances, using a similar formula to Ohio State from approximately 18,000 on up. The question is, how would the tickets be distributed beyond essential personnel needed for sideline and stadium operations? Major donors, parents of players, recruits and students would seem to be at the forefront of the line in terms of ticket priority. Many scenarios and models are being worked on. 3. Georgia athletes' testing The SEC provided minimum guidelines for its 14-member schools upon announcing the league's June 8 start date with coaching restriction. SEC provides blueprint for team's return A league-appointed 'Medical Guidance Task Force,' which includes top pubic health, infectious disease and sports medicine professionals from across the league, plans a 3-stage screening process and testing symptomatic team members. Georgia's plan, however, takes it a step further and involves COVID testing and the medical evaluations on all student-athletes. The obvious question is what happens when a player or players test positive? How will the quarantine process work? McGarity said early on the key words would be 'testing, tracing and treatment,' but until it plays out, there are questions. Players who test positive will likely have their identities withheld by the school under HIPAA guidelines. The value of the UGA sports scholarship has never been more evident, as the programs need not cut any corners because of the $105 million available in the schools' reserve fund. Only 41 percent of FBS programs have a reserve fund, and many have announced cuts and furloughs, some schools eliminating athletics programs. DawgNation College Football Offseason SEC presidents make it official, looking ahead to June 8 return RELATED: 5 keys, NCAA vote on Wednesday includes pivotal provisions College football return takes turn out West NCAA president Mark Emmert discusses issues with return to campus Les Miles says college football set for return, expert says no fans in stands Return of college football critical to fans' psyche, pocketbooks UGA president Jere Morehead employs 9 research groups for optimal return NCAA advances ball on name, image, likeness player compensation States opening equates to flickering light for college football return Greg Sankey hasn't ruled out a CFB season without all conferences Three keys amid college football return process, from Greg Sankey NCAA board of governors votes unanimously in favor of NIL compensation The post WATCH 3 things: What's next for college football return appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Georgia football is the No. 1 topic every day on DawgNation Daily the daily podcast for Georgia Bulldogs fans. Catch up on everything happening with UGA athletics with host Brandon Adams and the DawgNation experts as they break down the latest Georgia football recruiting news and discuss coach Kirby Smart's quest to return the Bulldogs to the top of the SEC. On episode No. 1,201 (May 24, 2020) of the podcast, Georgia fans can hear a discussion about why not all the hype growing around new UGA quarterback Jamie Newman is a bad thing even for Bulldogs coach Kirby Smart, who usually goes out of his way to downplay excessive media attention. Georgia football podcast: An example of Jamie Newman hype that Kirby Smart probably likes Beginning of the show: Georgia coach Kirby Smart typically goes out of his way to downplay hype for his team, his players and himself. He seemingly views excessive media attention as an unnecessary distraction that could detract from the goals UGA sets for itself. However, when it comes to battling programs such as Alabama and Clemson on the recruiting trail and their substantial national brands it seems safe to say not all hype is a bad thing. I'll share an example of some good hype for new UGA quarterback Jamie Newman on today's show. 10-minute mark: I discuss another interesting compliment for Newman given by a well-known quarterback coach this week on the Paul Finebaum Show. 15-minute mark: DawgNation's recruiting insider Jeff Sentell joins the show. Some of the topics covered include The latest on four-star tight end Brock Bowers An update on four-star pass rusher Dallas Turner An update on the nation's No. 1 player, defensive end Korey Foreman And the latest on five-star cornerback Tony Grimes 35-minute mark: I share other headlines from around the SEC including the SEC's vote to allow players to begin voluntarily returning to campus and a PSA featuring Alabama coach Nick Saban that went viral this week. 40-minute mark: I mock the growing number of analysts who've made their case for Florida winning the SEC East. End of show: I share the Gator Hater Updater. DawgNation Daily Episode 1201: An example of Jamie Newman hype that Kirby Smart probably likes The post Georgia football podcast: An example of Jamie Newman hype that Kirby Smart probably likes appeared first on DawgNation.
  • It's been interesting to see how the newspapers I read regularly have chosen to deal with the lack of sports during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Athens Banner-Herald has done away with its sports section for the duration; what sports stories it runs (mostly about what the future holds for the UGA football program), are in the news pages. USA Today has kept its sports section, spending a lot of time discussing what the sports landscape might look like later this year. And, the AJC also has kept its sports section, much of which has been devoted to nostalgic looks back at local teams' triumphs, like the Braves' World Series-winning season. The AJC also has been running a series of columns from its various sports staffers, in which they recount the five most memorable games they have covered in their careers. The articles have been fun reading, covering quite a wide variety of sports (with Georgia football well represented). That put me to thinking about the five most memorable games I've attended. I won't say 'covered,' because, although I've been blogging about Georgia football for 15 seasons, that's always been as a fan, not a reporter. I wasn't a sportswriter during my career with the AJC, and I only ever participated in covering one football game in my career, for The Red & Black student paper at UGA. That was the Sept. 15, 1973, season opener in Athens against the Pitt Panthers. The Dogs were a 17-point favorite, but the Panthers had a running back making his collegiate debut that day named Tony Dorsett, and he rushed for 101 yards as the two teams played to a 7-7 tie. I'd been managing editor of The Red & Black that summer, and all of the paper's student staff wasn't back yet, since school hadn't started (UGA began classes much later in those days), so the sports editor asked me to help out with the coverage. It was the only regular season game I've ever watched from the press box, an experience I didn't particularly enjoy, since you weren't supposed to cheer. After the game, I did the locker room interviews with a disappointed bunch of Dawgs. 'We just never could get going,' my old Athens High classmate Andy Johnson told me. 'We didn't underestimate them. We knew they would be good, but I don't know, I guess we just weren't ready.' So, yeah, it was one of the most memorable games ever for me, in terms of how I experienced it, but not a great outcome. Likewise, the Oct. 22, 1977, homecoming game certainly was one of the most memorable ever, with Prince Charles in attendance (the Georgia student section chanted 'Damn good prince!') and James Brown performing with the Redcoats at halftime (with my brother Jonathan underneath the stage, bracing it with his back as the Godfather of Soul did his splits). But, the game itself was one of the worst ever in Athens, a 33-0 loss to Kentucky. (I believe that might have been the game where an irate Vince Dooley pushed over a row of lockers at halftime in frustration.) The 21-10 win to end the losing streak against Tennessee in 2000 also was memorable. The atmosphere was unforgettable, as the Sanford Stadium crowd sensed victory and massed around the field, but while fans taking down the goalposts after the game was understandable, the fact that some of them then trashed their own stadium, ripping up the hedges, was an act so mindless that I still don't understand it. So, that one stays off the list. I also was at the basketball game in the Georgia Coliseum on March 8, 1969, when 'Pistol Pete' Maravich scored 58 points. With LSU ahead by 8 in the second overtime, Maravich dribbled around Bulldogs defenders for about a minute, putting on a show, then launched a 35-foot hook shot at the buzzer for a 90-80 win. Georgia fans, appreciative of the amazing performance they'd just seen, mobbed him on the floor. But, again, it was a Georgia loss. So, stipulating that I want my five most memorable games to be Dawgs wins, that sent me back to a listing of the greatest games my brothers and I ever have attended. We first compiled it shortly after I started the Junkyard Blawg in 2005, and I updated it in 2009 and 2017, to add additional games. The most recent version offered a baker's dozen of the greatest games I'd seen, and, believe me, it was tough narrowing it down to those. Picking the five most memorable? Even tougher. Still, here goes, ranking them in ascending order, like the AJC series did. (Keep in mind, this is limited to games I saw in person. My list doesn't include some of Georgia's greatest wins games that I watched on TV or listened to on radio, including the upset of Michigan in Ann Arbor, 'Run, Lindsay!' in Jacksonville, the national championship win over Notre Dame in New Orleans and the 'hobnail boot' game in Knoxville.) 5. Georgia over Georgia Tech, 30-24, Nov. 28, 2009:Frankly, I was dreading attending this one when my son Bill decided to take me to my first game at Grant Field in decades, but the lightly-regarded Dawgs ran it down the throats of a Jackets team that ended up winning the ACC Championship. This was the original 'We run this state' game. The looks on the faces of the Tech fans on the walk back to the North Avenue MARTA station afterward were priceless. 4. Georgia over Clemson, 27-12, Oct. 5, 1991:Recently replayed on WSB radio, this was one of the high points of the Ray Goffyears (and there weren't many), as the Dawgs upset the No. 6 Tigers, who went on to win the ACC Championship, in a night game on national TV. Key plays were Georgia safety Mike Jones stripping the ball after a Clemson back had run 54 yards, and quarterback Eric Zeier setting up a TD with a 59-yard bomb to Arthur Marshall. This also was the day the Braves clinched the division title that began their celebrated run under Bobby Cox.When the Braves score was announced after the football game, Georgia and Clemson fans chopped and chanted together. Unforgettable. 3. Georgia over Auburn, 45-20, Nov. 10, 2007:The first 'Blackout' game. I don't think I've ever seen a Sanford Stadium crowd as excited as when the Dawgs burst through that banner in those black jerseys. Still, the Tigers made it a game, taking a 20-17 lead, before a Georgia team featuring Matthew Stafford and Knowshon Moreno scored 28 unanswered points, and wound up dancing to Soulja Boy. 2. Georgia over Alabama, 21-0, Oct. 2, 1976:The outcome of the game between the No. 6 Bulldogs and the No. 10 Crimson Tide never really was in question, and the Sanford Stadium crowd smelled the Bear's blood from the start. This was the loudest I ever heard a Sanford crowd until they enclosed the east end of the stadium. Matt Robinson and Ray Goff alternated running Georgia's veer option offense, and Erk Russell's Junkyard Dogs defense held Bama's vaunted wishbone attack to just 49 yards rushing. Manhandling Bama, which was coming off five straight conference crowns, just wasn't done in those days. This game was one of the toughest tickets ever in Athens. Folks camped out overnight on the tracks, and my Dad had to watch from the Sanford Drive bridge. The postgame celebration in Athens was wild, with police having to close Milledge Avenue. 1. Georgia over Alabama, 18-17, Sept. 18, 1965: This was back during a period when Alabama was our opening game, and the last time the Dogs had won was during the 1959 SEC championship season with Fran Tarkenton. After that, the whippings by the Tide had become somewhat expected. N ot many folks gave the Dawgs much of a chance against the defending national champion Tide at the beginning of Dooley's second season. But, the Dawgs were hanging tough and behind only 17-10 in the fourth quarter. I'd gone to get a Coke and was walking back to my seat when I heard a guy I knew casually from school say to his father, 'The Bear better do something, or Bama could lose this thing.' I'm not sure if he was happy or sad about that, but, sure enough, moments later came the legendary flea-flicker pass from Kirby Moore to Pat Hodgson to Bob Taylor. And then, with the 2-point play pass to Hodgson, Georgia had one of its most unexpected wins ever, especially considering the Tide went on to take another AP national title that year. So, those are five memorable games I've seen in person. Are they the most memorable? Well, yeah, but, ask me tomorrow, and you might get a slightly different listing. After all, they don't come much more memorable than the 2013 UGA-LSU shootout featuring former roomies Aaron Murray and Zach Mettenberger (the loudest game I've ever experienced at Sanford Stadium) or the butt-kicking of Nick Saban's defending national champion LSU Tigers in 2004 (featuring f ive touchdown throws by David Greene ) or that spine-tingling moment last year when the stadium was lit-up all red at the beginning of the fourth quarter of yet another Georgia win over Notre Dame, or Yeah, I've seen a lot of memorable games. The post It's not easy to narrow down my five most memorable UGA games appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Jamaree Salyer couldn't have had a much better end to the 2019 season than he did for the Georgia Bulldogs. He made his first career start in the Sugar Bowl and played well as the Bulldogs came away with a 26-14 win over Baylor. That performance should that he could possibly hold up as a starting tackle for the Bulldogs, something they desperately need for the 2020 season, as Andrew Thomas and Isaiah Wilson are both now off to the NFL. Wilson, Thomas and Solomon Kindley all spoke highly of Salyer while speaking at the NFL combine, as the two tackles expect him to be a leader on Georgia's offensive line this coming season. 'They're young kids but they work so hard,' Solomon Kindley said of Salyer and Trey Hill. 'They're leaders and if you go around them, they have great character. If you go around them, you'd think they're one of us. Related: Jamaree Salyer and his playing time explain why Georgia offensive line is one of the nation's best Salyer hasn't gotten a chance to showcase his improvements on the field just yet, but he has turned a lot of heads with his workouts. He's even dropped weight, as he's under 315 pounds, at least 10 pounds less than what he played the 2019 season at. And it has gotten the attention of his head coach, Kirby Smart. I can see abs in his future Coach Kirby Smart (@KirbySmartUGA) May 20, 2020 The Bulldogs need Salyer to be not just a leader but also one of the best offensive linemen on the 2020 team. Replacing Thomas and Wilson, two first-round picks, won't be easy. But so far this offseason, Salyer has shown that he'll be up to the task of being a starting offensive tackle for the Bulldogs in 2020. More Georgia football stories from around DawgNation WATCH: Georgia basketball look ahead, how Tom Crean's building another winner Kirby Smart reveals thoughts on return, Georgia outlines voluntary workout transition plan Why aggressiveness, not athleticism, could mark the most important difference between Jamie Newman and Jake Fromm HEDGES: The rival programs looming as the big hurdles for Georgia recruiting in 2021 Brock Bowers: Nation's No. 3 TE knows what he'd like to do before his decision Former UGA greats Roquan Smith and Lorenzo Carter are helping in recruitment of key prospects Athlon Sports Top 25 football preview explains why Florida ahead of Georgia Update: DeAndre Baker legal issues tangled, libel and slander case pending Where Georgia football 2021 recruiting commitments and targets rank after latest updates The post Jamaree Salyer has been one of the big winners of Georgia's offseason appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Tom Crean is well known for his Xs and Os and uptempo teams, and Georgia's 2020 basketball recruiting class makes it clear there are no plans to slow down. The Bulldogs are coming off a 16-16 season that saw the team peak the final night with an 18-point win over Ole Miss in the SEC Men's Basketball Tournament in Nashville. RELATED: Georgia pounds Ole Miss, aims for Florida in SEC tourney The next day, March 12, the college sports world shutdown amid the coronavirus pandemic. Crean and his team were left wondering what might have been. The Bulldogs have made just one NCAA tournament appearance the last nine years (2015). Crean, who rebuilt Marquette into a Final Four team and rebuilt Indiana into a two-time Big Ten champion knows UGA remains a work in progress. Crean inherited a mess two years ago. A vacuum existed among six returning seniors after star Yante Maten took his leadership and scoring with him to the NBA. Three other players served disciplinary suspensions or have been dismissed from the program. The sole shining star was Nicolas Claxton, and he improved so much under Crean in one season that he went to the NBA following his sophomore year. This rebuild is such that just one player remains from that 2018-19 team. RELATED: Tom Izzo shares insight into his former assistant, Tom Crean UGA appears to be a refreshed and recharged program moving in the right direction. Georgia has a solid nucleus to build around with players like freshman assists record holder Sahvir Wheeler, junior guard Tye Fagan and sophomore power forward Toumani Camara returning. The players are eligible to return to campus as early as June 8 after the SEC presidents voted on Friday to give the green light to players wanting to return to practices for voluntary workouts. The basketball team's plans are currently being evaluated. Look back The 2019-20 campaign saw Georgia set a single-season attendance record in Stegman Coliseum that included marquee home wins over Tennessee and Auburn. On the road, Crean's Bulldogs scored only the second non-conference road victory over a Top 25 team in program history, beating Memphis. And now, another reload is underway, with projected NBA lottery pick Anthony Edwards moving on. RELATED: Georgia's 'Antman' declares for NBA draft, stock soaring Junior power forward Rayshaun Hammonds also elected to leave early, though his professional status is considerably less certain. Crean is looking forward, his roster now void of any players recruited by former coach Mark Fox. 'What I want is a team that can switch, a team that can play multiple ways,' Crean told DawgNation during the Ingles On The Beat show last Monday night. 'We don't need to get anyone that will slow us down or clog that lane. We have to get to the basketball, but we have to be able to run.' No doubt, Georgia has scored 90 or more points 11 times in Crean's two seasons. Prior to his arrival, the Bulldogs had scored 90 or more points in 11 times in 11 seasons. 'We were second in the country in transition points, we were third in the country at points at the rim, and yet we shot 30 percent from three,' Crean points out. 'You look at some of the games we had, if you had another 3-point make, or two more 3-pointers and I'm not talking about manufacturing threes, I'm talking about making the open threes that we had that's four or five more wins right there.' Georgia could be that close to the bubble again the season, but they'll need to rely on newcomers once again. Experienced recruits Once season after reloading with 10 newcomers and the No. 5-ranked signing class in the county, the Bulldogs are poised with seven more new players. Georgia most recently added Andrew Garcia, a 6-foot-5, 228-pound shooting guard who figures to add scoring punch and muscle to a team that will need to grow up in a hurry. Garcia is the second graduate transfer in the class, joining George Mason transfer Justin Kier (6-4, 197) on what looks to be another very versatile team. '(Kier) is gonna be a combination guard that can handle it and that can score,' Crean said. 'He'll be comfortable bringing the ball up the floor, or be comfortable having the ball thrown ahead to him.' Crean said this Georgia team will need to grow up fast, and that's likely why he's adding two graduate transfers and two junior college transfers, as well. Jonathan Ned is a 6-9 inside-out forward from Eastern Florida State junior college that shot 48-percent from beyond the 3-point line last season. 'We need Jonathan to come in and make threes,' Crean said. 'We need him to drive the ball, rebound and defend his position, but we also need him to make open jump shots.' Mikal Starks (6-0 guard) is another Eastern Florida State junior college transfer 'I think he's a highly competitive leadership guy, he's a winner, he competes, he fights, he's quick and he can get to the basket,' Crean said. 'I think he's going to be a good shooter for us, and I think that's important.' Georgia also has a commitment from Tyron McMillian, a 6-8, 225-pounder from Kilgore, Texas. McMillan is ranked the No. 11 junior college player in the nation. Incoming freshmen K.D. Johnson is a 6-1, top 100 signee out of Hargrave Military Academy High School the Crean believes will have an immediate impact. 'K.D. is a high, high level competitor,' Crean said. 'He's a two-way guy that picks the ball up full court, he'll hawk you, he'll fight you. 'He plays with a high motor, he plays to win, and I love his fearlessness.' Crean said Johnson will take on anybody at the rim, though he expects the talented prospect will quickly adjust to the SEC competition level. 'Sometimes he thinks he's going to go score on the 6-10, 6-11 guy, and I think he's going to have to make the growth of how to get to the other side of the rim and make the kick out (pass),' Crean said. 'But he passes the ball well, when he's locked in and stepping into his shot he's making it consistently. 'I love his track mentality, and I love the fact that he loves the game. Anthony Edwards is like that. You want guys that want to be in the gym making themselves better.' Josh Taylor is another incoming freshman, a 6-8, 195-pounder out of Norcross. 'Josh works around the bucket and he's a very good rebounder,' Crean said. 'He wants to get better as a shooter and driver but he rebounds the ball, he runs both ends and he wants to compete.' Future profile Crean plans to keep with his uptempo style, and he's hoping to develop more toughness and see leaders step up in tight games. That was something that was missing at times the past two seasons. 'Some of those games last season, we couldn't stop the runs because we couldn't stop the bleeding,' Crean said. 'We couldn't go in and get a bucket inside, or we couldn't just say we're going to get an And One. ''We had some maturity leadership issues with that when it was time to get it settled down.' Crean said it's something he needs to recruit to, and he feels good about what Georgia has in the works with a class currently ranked No. 29. 'You can't put a value on people that can settle your team down and bring them confidence on the floor,' Crean said. 'And it isn't always the point guard, and it isn't always the oldest guy. 'Anybody can change momentum inside a game, but very few can bring a lot of confidence every day to a team. Your job as s coach is to develop it and recruit it, and it's imperative you find those people.' Tom Crean May 18, 2020 DawgNation Georgia basketball Bulldogs upset Ole Miss in SEC tourney opener LSU beats Georgia in regular-season finale Georgia basketball goes cold in loss to Florida Anthony Edwards takes over final minute, UGA topples Arkansas WATCH: Georgia celebrates like crazy after Vandy win Bulldogs score resounding win over No. 13 Auburn Georgia basketball drops close one at Texas A&M, Anthony Edwards ill Georgia suffers deflating defeat at Florida UGA snaps four-game losing streak with Texas A&M win Perplexing loss for Georgia basketball at Missouri Georgia comes up short in hard-fought loss at Kentucky Freshman Anthony Edwards discloses injury, status Sahvir Wheeler on clutch game-winner, 'been there a ton of times' Anthony Edwards lights up Michigan State for 37 in 93-85 loss Rayshaun Hammonds wrecks Georgia Tech Anthony Edwards draws standing ovation in opener The post WATCH: Georgia basketball look ahead, how Tom Crean's building another winner appeared first on DawgNation.