ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

cloudy-day
67°
Cloudy
H 81° L 66°
  • cloudy-day
    67°
    Current Conditions
    Cloudy. H 81° L 66°
  • cloudy-day
    73°
    Afternoon
    Cloudy. H 81° L 66°
  • cloudy-day
    77°
    Evening
    Cloudy. H 81° 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

College
Own the East: Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with new WRs
Close

Own the East: Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with new WRs

Own the East: Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with new WRs

Own the East: Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with new WRs

Georgia football fans crave a national championship, and this season might be the year their wait comes to an end. However, the first step toward making that happen is for UGA coach Kirby Smart to lead the Bulldogs to a third-straight SEC East title. With that in mind, DawgNation is proud to present in partnership with Georgia's Own Credit Union the "Own the East" series. A season preview content series focused on what it will take for UGA to dominate the division once again, and possibly return to the College Football Playoff.

A Friday afternoon in late June isn't typically a moment when college football fans expect big news, but that was the case for Georgia on June 21, and the news wasn't just big, it was shocking.

"Jeremiah Holloman no longer represents the University of Georgia football program," UGA coach Kirby Smart said in a statement. "We expect every member of our team to uphold the highest standards and values of the University of Georgia and Georgia football. It is disappointing when this does not happen."

Just like that, UGA's leading returning wide receiver was gone.

Holloman was allegedly involved in an incident of domestic violence with a woman with whom he was dating last April. The victim reported the alleged incident to the police just days before Holloman's dismissal.

"Early June we were made aware of a police report, and we took immediate action," Smart said at SEC Media Days in July. "It was very unfortunate. We wish J.J. nothing but the best."

It's the kind of moment that can shake the foundation of a football program a moment where genuine leadership is needed.

One of the Bulldogs' top leaders left tackle Andrew Thomas recalled his feelings when he first heard the news.

"I was very disappointed," Thomas said. "It's a very unfortunate situation, but we've got to move on. We've got goals as a team and we've got to accomplish them.

UGA quarterback Jake Fromm echoed a similar sentiment.

"It is what it is," Fromm said. "Next guy up, and let's go play football."

Fromm apparently took his own advice. He's been credited by many of his teammates for setting the tone for the kind of intense summer workouts that would be required to get a crop of mostly inexperienced receivers ready for what UGA hopes is a national championship run.

One of the guys who noticed Fromm's efforts is one of the receivers who's been with him longest senior Tyler Simmons.

"Fromm took more initiative with getting the young guys in to meet more," Simmons said. "Getting the young guys in to do one-on-ones, and just trying to find out who his guys will be this year."

Fromm explained that sometimes the most significant challenge associated with the extra work was finding time during busy schedules to squeeze it all in.

"During the summer, it's trying to find time around the classroom schedule, around the weight room schedule," Fromm said.

It's not always easy managing everyone's time, but for Fromm, getting on the same page with his young wideouts is probably a necessity.

"We have a lot of young receivers," Thomas said. "We lost three receivers from last year. So right now we have a lot of young guys and a transfer guy working hard to come in and step up and take those roles."

Among those young receivers are two of the more notable recruits UGA has signed at the position in recent years freshmen George Pickens and Dominick Blaylock.

"They were really great high school football players," Fromm said. "They're just trying to get up to the speed, really trying to learn the offense. They're both doing really well with it."

Pickens and Blaylock will undoubtedly face some growing pains while transitioning from high school to the SEC, but they both possess the talents to aid that process.

Pickens, in particular, has turned heads as of late.

"George is a one-of-a-kind player," UGA cornerback Eric Stokes recently said. "He's one heck of a wide receiver I'm falling in love with George day by day."

UGA safety Richard LeCounte after battling Pickens in a recent practice had even higher praise for Pickens' ability to make leaping catches.

"[Pickens] reminds you of A.J. Green his skillset, being able to adjust to the ball in the air," LeCounte said. "He's a great guy. He's got a lot to learn, but also you see flashes."

According to Simmons, the off-field aspects of Pickens and Blaylock including the ability to absorb information quickly have been just as impressive as the athleticism.

"They've come a long way compared to me," Simmons said. "I didn't really learn the offense much in my freshman year (2016), but they've come in and taken it full-fledge on. They've met more with Jake. They've met more with the coaches. They've taken that time to get the timing down with the quarterbacks. They've bought into the program."

Pickens and Blaylock's time spent with Fromm could prove valuable, but it won't necessarily guarantee a spot in the receiver rotation.

There are plenty of other candidates in the competition including as Thomas said Lawrence Cager, a transfer from Miami.

Cager has a relationship with new UGA offensive coordinator James Coley dating back to Coley's time working at Miami before arriving in Athens in 2016.

Coley recently described the one thing Cager has that freshmen like Pickens and Blaylock haven't earned yet.

"He's a veteran," Coley said of Cager who had 21 catches for 374 yards and six touchdowns for the Hurricanes last season. "The thing he brings is experience where you sit back and you say I wonder if this guy's going to make this play in a particular time.' Veteran guys [like Cager] you've seen it happen. You know they've been in those spotlights."

Of course, Cager isn't the only transfer wide receiver on the roster hoping to earn playing time with the Bulldogs. The same can be said for Demetris Robertson who arrived last summer from Cal, but didn't make much of an impact during the 2018 season.

This year might finally be Robertson's time to shine.

"He's gotten more opportunity," UGA coach Kirby Smart recently said of Robertson. "Last year he had a plethora of guys he had three draft picks in front of him. And he was coming in not knowing an offense. Now he's got three draft picks removed, and he's the guy playing the slot, catching the balls he's got to continue to work and improve he's got a lot of guys behind him who are competing and pushing him."

Coley has also been impressed with what he's seen from Robertson.

"D-Rob has continued to improve within our system," Coley said. "He's definitely a guy who has got a great skillset. He's fast. He's quick. We've just got to continue to develop him into the type of player we need him to be."

It's a fair bet Cager and Robertson are just as eager to spend time with Fromm as Pickens and Blaylock have apparently been, but all four will be challenged by the rest of the receiving corp. for the coveted playing time made available when Holloman was dismissed and Mecole Hardman, Riley Ridley and Terry Godwin departed for the NFL.

Simmons, along with Kearis Jackson, Matt Landers, Trey Blount and Tommy Bush are all seemingly in the mix.

It remains to be seen who'll emerge atop the pecking order, but there's no shortage of candidates to have breakout seasons.

Expect the remainder of the summer to be busy as coaches evaluate all the talent, receivers work to impress and Fromm attempts to establish the chemistry needed to make the offense efficient.

"It's on them winning spots to be playmakers," Coley said of the Bulldogs' wide receivers. "It's on Jake to know in the situation who he's going to go to, and it's on me to put them out there [and] once they're out there say, we're going to feature this guy because he can do this really well.'"

The post Own the East: Jake Fromm working to gain chemistry with new WRs appeared first on DawgNation.

Read More

Georgia Sports News

  • NEW YORK (AP) - Just about every newcomer to the Atlanta Braves has made an immediate impact lately. Francisco Cervelli fit right in Saturday night. The newly signed catcher had three hits and three RBIs in his Atlanta debut, and the Braves beat the New York Mets 9-5 for their seventh straight victory. 'He was excited about getting here - and it showed,' Braves manager Brian Snitker said. Ronald Acu a Jr. hit a tiebreaking single in the eighth inning, and recent addition Billy Hamilton dashed home with another run on the play thanks to a mental lapse by Mets left fielder J.D. Davis. Freddie Freeman launched his career-high 35th home run in the ninth. Freeman, who began the day leading the majors in RBIs, increased his season total to 105. Along with Cervelli and Hamilton, substitute shortstop Adeiny Hechavarr a was picked up off the scrap heap (from the Mets) not long ago. That trio and three key relievers acquired at the July 31 trade deadline have given the Braves a huge boost over the past two nights and beyond. 'All the new guys were - golly!' Snitker said. Ozzie Albies and Josh Donaldson also went deep for the NL East leaders, each connecting on a solo shot in the third off starter Zack Wheeler. Atlanta improved to 10-5 this year against the Mets, who remained two games behind the Chicago Cubs for the second NL wild card. Rookie slugger Pete Alonso matched a Mets record with his 41st home run, a three-run shot that put New York ahead 5-4 in the fifth after trailing 4-0. But third baseman Todd Frazier was unable to snag Cervelli's hard one-hopper in the sixth, a two-base error that led to Cervelli scoring the tying run on Rafael Ortega's single. After recovering from yet another concussion, Cervelli played his first major league game since May 25. The veteran backstop stroked a two-run double on the second pitch he saw for a 2-0 lead in the second. 'I was playing like a little kid,' Cervelli said. 'That's all that matters, man. From now on, just enjoy every game, every opportunity, and do what I have to do.' He singled his next time up and added an RBI double to deep center in the ninth. 'Hasn't played in three months, comes out and gets three knocks. Just makes it look that easy,' Hamilton said. From his knees, Cervelli also threw out Amed Rosario trying to steal second in a tie game in the seventh. 'After he got that hit in the second inning I just said, 'Well, just get a new guy every single day,'' Freeman said, adding that the recent additions are energizing the entire clubhouse. 'It's been pretty amazing.' Cervelli, released Thursday by Pittsburgh, signed with the Braves earlier Saturday to help fill in with Brian McCann on the injured list. Josh Tomlin (2-1) tossed two scoreless innings for the win. Ortega sparked Atlanta's two-out rally in the eighth with a single against Brad Brach (4-4) that went off the glove of a leaping Jeff McNeil at second base. The speedy Hamilton followed with a pinch-hit single and scored from third when Davis held the ball after Acu a's single and then lobbed it back to the infield, drawing boos from the crowd of 38,300. 'This is definitely fun. I keep getting a chance to play and I keep having fun with it,' said Hamilton, who hit a go-ahead single in the 14th inning of Friday night's victory for his first hit with Atlanta. Davis called it a 'helpless' feeling.' 'That's my fault. I should be throwing into (Rosario at shortstop) right away instead of picking up the runner at first,' Davis said. Atlanta starter Max Fried, handed a 4-0 lead and looking for his 15th win, allowed five runs and seven hits in five innings. Wilson Ramos extended his hitting streak to 18 games for the Mets, the longest active streak in the majors. KID DYNAMITE Alonso had the souvenir ball in a plastic case after becoming the first rookie to tie his team's home run record since Hall of Famer and former Mets broadcaster Ralph Kiner did it for the Pirates with 23 in 1946, according to STATS. Todd Hundley (1996) and Carlos Beltran (2006) also hit 41 home runs in a season for the Mets. 'It's surreal,' Alonso said. 'That moment was really special. I couldn't have dreamed it up any better.' The slugger also has 100 RBIs, making him the first Mets player to reach the plateau since David Wright had 103 in 2010. 'Really cool,' Alonso said. SPOTLESS Atlanta's bullpen has fired 24 consecutive scoreless innings. The relievers are 5-0 with three saves and a 0.34 ERA during the winning streak. TRAINER'S ROOM Braves: Dansby Swanson (bruised right foot) was scheduled to play shortstop in his third rehab game at Class A Rome. ... LF-3B Austin Riley (right knee sprain) was set to play left field for the first time on his rehab assignment at Rome. Mets: McNeil, the NL batting leader, was reinstated from the injured list after missing 10 days with a strained left hamstring. With the score tied, he delivered a pinch-hit double on the first pitch he saw leading off the seventh but was thrown out trying to advance to third on a grounder to shortstop. McNeil remained in the game and singled in the ninth. ... Mets reliever Edwin D az, who gave up Freeman's homer, exited with tightness in his back and neck area. He said he doesn't think it's serious. ... Backup catcher Tom s Nido was placed on the seven-day injured list with a concussion and the club selected the contract of veteran catcher Ren Rivera from Triple-A Syracuse. Reserve outfielder Aaron Altherr was designated for assignment. ... OF Brandon Nimmo (neck) had a day off on his rehab assignment at Syracuse. UP NEXT LHP Dallas Keuchel (4-5, 4.14 ERA) tries to pitch Atlanta to a three-game sweep Sunday afternoon. LHP Steven Matz (8-7, 4.18) goes for the Mets. ___ More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • Feleipe Franks threw a costly interception just after the Gators stopped Miami on defense. The camera immediately cut to Steve Spurrier. The former Florida coach was less than impressed by what the Florida quarterback did on first down no less. Steve Spurrier watching Feleipe Franks play Quarterback pic.twitter.com/VsR8B6yKPx Big Cat (@BarstoolBigCat) August 25, 2019 The interception was Franks' second of the game. He also had a fumble in the redzone earlier in the game as well. Franks did score three touchdowns, including a go-ahead rushing touchdown in the fourth quarter to give the Gators the lead. But this has not been a great night for the Florida quarterback. Franks has also been seen chirping with fans on the sideline during the game. It has been an incredibly sloppy game from both Florida and Miami. The Florida defense has bailed out the Gators offense, as Florida has sacked Miami quarterback Jarren Williams 9 times. The Gators and Bulldogs meet on Nov. 2 in Jacksonville, Fla. If the Franks plays like he did against the Hurricanes, Georgia should be celebrating a third-straight win over the Gators. The post LOOK: Steve Spurrier has priceless reaction to Feleipe Franks interception appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Florida played poorly in the first half of its season-opener against Miami. The Gators trailed 13-7, giving a touchdown just before halftime. Florida also fumbled the ball twice, including once in the red zone. Georgia fans loved watching the Gators struggle in the first half, as Florida is seen as the top threat to the Bulldogs in the SEC East. The post Georgia football fans laughing at Florida's poor first half appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ORLANDO, Fla. Florida has not yet received a ruling on the eligibility of former Georgia football outside linebacker Brenton Cox. Gators athletic director Scott Stricklin told DawgNation that Florida is still waiting for more information on the appeal that has been filed for Cox to have immediate eligibility. White Cox won't dress or play against Miami in the Gators' 7 p.m. Saturday opener against Miami, he has worked hard to impress his new teammates in Gainesvillefrom all indications. A recent social media post provided evidence of Cox's positive mindset. All these shots I'm takin, they must not know I'm Bulletproof #Themanforever pic.twitter.com/t7gfnJhI70 Brenton Cox Jr. (@Brenton_cox) August 12, 2019 Cox's transfer from Georgia was a whirlwind. The former 5-star recruit from Stockbridge, Ga., was signing autographs at UGA's Fan Day on Aug. 3, reportedly parted from the team on Aug. 4, announced his transfer on Aug. 5 and was signing autographs at Florida Fan Day on Aug. 10. RELATED: Brenton Cox enters transfer portal Georgia coach Kirby Smart seemed to take the Cox transfer in stride when asked about it on Aug. 10, Smart's first media availability after the transfer took place. ' Concerns? I don't know about that,' Smart said. 'Brenton chose to withdraw from the University of Georgia, going into the portal. He's now at another SEC institution so we wish him nothing but the best and we appreciate his contributions while he was here.' The 6-foot-4, 245-pound Cox had 20 tackles and a sack last season, appearing in 13 of the Bulldogs' 14 games. Cox had a career-high six tackles in the 28-21 Sugar Bowl loss to Texas, making his only career start in place of injured All-SEC linebacker D'Andre Walker. It was a tough season for Cox, who struggled with containment responsibilities, most notably after Walker was injured in the SEC Championship Game before Alabama's comeback. Things grew more challenging for Cox in the spring, when he was arrested on April 2 for misdemeanor marijuana possession. RELATED: Brenton Cox speaks out after marijuana arrest Georgia coach Kirby Smart disciplined Cox and Robert Beal who was also arrested on misdemeanor possession in part by making them run steps during a scrimmage. RELATED: Details emerge on misdemeanor arrest of Brenton Cox The Bulldogs have not had any off-field incidents reported since. For Cox, it may prove to be as simple as needing a fresh start. Cox has impressed his new teammates in Florida's fall camp. 'Elusive guy, great off the ball,' tailback Lamical Perine told Florida's Rivals.com site, Gators Territory. 'He's just a guy we glad to have, and he came from Georgia, so I'm pretty sure they kind of salty about that. Hey, we'll take him. He's a great guy.' Receiver Trevon Grimes was even more impressed. 'He's phenomenal; he's good, he's fast, he's quick,' Grimes said. 'He actually has some move that I've never seen before a spin move, like reversal, crazy. 'He's just gonna help our O-line get better.' No doubt, that's the sort of performance Cox's high school resume has suggested. A 2018 Under Armour All-American, Cox was named to the 2017 All-State Class 5A First Team defense by the AJC and the Associated Press. Cox was an ESPN.com five-star prospect, #11 in the ESPN 300, #8 overall prospect in the Southeast, #5 ranked DE nationally, #3 overall prospect in Georgia. RELATED: Breaking down the 8 Georgia football offseason transfers The post Former Georgia football linebacker Brenton Cox won't dress for Florida-Miami game appeared first on DawgNation.
  • NEW YORK (AP) - Francisco Cervelli caught on with a playoff contender, just as he hoped. The first-place Atlanta Braves signed Cervelli to a one-year contract Saturday and immediately plugged the veteran catcher into the starting lineup against the New York Mets. After recovering from his latest concussion, it was his first game in the majors since May 25. 'The only way he's going to get to know these guys is to catch 'em,' Braves manager Brian Snitker said. About two hours before the game, Cervelli said he was still waiting for his catching equipment to arrive at Citi Field. But on the second pitch he saw in his first at-bat, he laced a two-run double into the left field corner for a 2-0 lead. He added a sharp single his next time up. Cervelli, who has a long history of concussions, was granted his release Thursday by the last-place Pittsburgh Pirates after telling them he wanted to hook on with a big league team that had playing time to offer and a chance to reach the postseason. He gives the NL East leaders a proven replacement for injured catcher Brian McCann, sidelined earlier in the week by a sprained left knee. 'It's amazing,' Cervelli said. 'My only mission here is win. I'm wired that way.' Atlanta will pay Cervelli $110,403, a prorated portion of the $555,000 major league minimum. That is offset against his $11.5 million salary in the final season of the $31 million, three-year contract with Pittsburgh that he was released from. The 33-year-old Cervelli joined the Braves at Citi Field and batted seventh against Mets right-hander Zack Wheeler. Snitker said Cervelli will split playing time with Tyler Flowers behind the plate and likely remain with the club when McCann returns because by then rosters will have expanded in September. 'He's got skills. He's a good little catcher,' Snitker said. 'While Mac's out, he's going to be nice little pairing with Tyler.' Cervelli dealt with multiple concussions this season and batted .193 with one home run and five RBIs in 34 games for the Pirates. He recently completed a minor league rehab assignment that began Aug. 11 at Double-A Altoona in the Pittsburgh organization. He played one game there and then caught six games at Triple-A Indianapolis. 'I'm not a little kid anymore, so I kind of know exactly what I need and how many games,' Cervelli said. 'I've been working so hard besides the game for a long time to get back at my best.' Cervelli acknowledged that two months ago, he was a little jittery about catching again after his most recent concussion in May. A report suggested he didn't plan to go back behind the plate, but Cervelli insisted he didn't say that - someone else did. After working out in the infield, he moved back to catcher in the minors. He said he was bored at other positions and threw away his infield glove. 'I'm not a baseball player. I'm a catcher,' he said. 'I've been doing it for 17 years and that's all I'm going to do. And, I like to be behind the plate. It sounds crazy, but I like to get hit and do my thing. So, I'm here now.' He said he quietly underwent a new therapy with a new doctor and is feeling good. 'I put everything I had,' said Cervelli, the Pirates' opening day catcher each of the past five years. Cervelli began the night a .269 career hitter with 36 home runs and 261 RBIs in 700 major league games. His .362 on-base percentage in 450 games with Pittsburgh was second among big league catchers during that span to San Francisco's Buster Posey (.368). To make roster room for Cervelli, the Braves optioned catcher Alex Jackson to Triple-A Gwinnett and transferred left-hander Grant Dayton to the 60-day injured list. Cervelli, from Venezuela, spent the first seven years of his career with the New York Yankees and played in 42 games for the 2009 World Series champions. 'I feel like a lucky man,' he said. 'Just the fact that I went to Triple-A and played baseball. It doesn't matter what it is. I played there like a kid again, and now I feel more grateful just to get picked up by a team who is in first place and they like to win. That's the whole idea.' ___ AP Baseball Writer Ronald Blum contributed to this report. ___ More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports