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WATCH: Georgia coach Tom Crean issues profuse apology for remarks after Ole Miss game
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WATCH: Georgia coach Tom Crean issues profuse apology for remarks after Ole Miss game

WATCH: Georgia coach Tom Crean issues profuse apology for remarks after Ole Miss game

WATCH: Georgia coach Tom Crean issues profuse apology for remarks after Ole Miss game

Georgia basketball-Tom Crean issues apology for remarks after Ole Miss loss-Georgia Bulldogs

ATHENS — Georgia coach Tom Crean fell on the proverbial sword on Monday. He apologized — profusely — for his remarks after this past Saturday’s game against Ole Miss.

Following the 80-64 home loss before an announced crowd of more than 10,000 at Stegeman Coliseum and 90 former players there on the occasion of Letterman’s Day, Crean inferred that he wished he had cut ties with some of the Bulldogs’ returning lettermen.

Crean said Monday that he didn’t really realize what he’d said until he read his remarks in news accounts well after the game. At that point, it was too late to take them back.

“It’s been on my mind since Saturday night,” Crean said Monday as spoke to reporters during his regular-scheduled press briefing before Tuesday night’s game at Texas A&M. “I wanted to wait until we got out in front of you guys. I definitely thought about putting out a statement but I thought it’d be better to do it this way.

“I always tell me players you can’t let frustration in, and I always preach that and try to be very cognizant of that. But I think I did. I think I let losing that game and the fact that we had those lettermen there and our fans in general, because I didn;t think we played with the spirit and the passion that we need to. I looked back at those comments and I saw them and it was like I was blaming the players and that was never my intent to do that.”

Crean had actually been talking to reporters for a good while during his postgame press conference following the game when a question about turnovers and poor mental toughness led to one of Crean’s patented long and unscripted rants. It was in the midst of that several quotes came the were pulled out and highlighted some by media outlets, including some that otherwise didn’t cover the game.

“It doesn’t mean that they are not great kids,” Crean said, “but very few programs when there’s a takeover, when you have guys that haven’t done it at any point in time really in their career, a lot of those guys, they move on. That’s what happens in a job change. And I didn’t do that. So I’m not going to complain. We’ve just got to keep doing everything we can do to fix it and make it better.”

While Crean’s comments came off as harsh and unsympathetic, the reality is a coach cannot revoke a student-athlete’s scholarship who is otherwise living up to all other conditions of his grant-in-aid agreement with the institution. It is not enough for a coach to determine that a player that was recruited is unable to perform to the standards the program requires. However, it is not uncommon for coaches to be honest with their charges about how much they believe they will be contributing on the field of competition. It’s up to the student-athlete whether they see that as being satisfactory to meeting their athletic goals. But their aid is to remain constant unless standard conduct or academic codes are violated and unmet.

“I tell the kids all the time that I believe in them and if I didn’t they wouldn’t be here,” Crean said. “I didn’t say that and that was a mistake. I am definitely sorry and I have apologized to them. We’ve talked through a lot of things and I apologize to anybody else that offended, because that was never the intent.”

The Bulldogs (10-13, 1-9 SEC) held a team-meeting before Sunday’s practice that lasted more than an hour. In that meet, every player spoke as well as Crean. He said he first apologized to the players for not expressing his belief in them and then they all turned their attention to what they can do to turnaround the season.

The loss to Ole Miss was Georgia’s ninth in a row in SEC, the most since the 2008-09 season when they dropped 11 straight and finished 3-15 in league play. The Bulldogs had 20 turnovers in the game, were out-rebounded on both the offensive and defensive glass and gave up an inordinate number of second-chance points and points off turnovers.

“We had a team meeting and we all came together, coaches, too,” sophomore forward Nicolas Claxton said. “Coach Crean told us what was portrayed on Twitter and social media was not what he meant and he believes in us and has confidence in us. He said he still has that same confidence in us and we’re going to finish the season as strong as we can.”

Georgia will be looking for its first road win of the season on Tuesday against a Texas A&M team that is in very much the same predicament. The Aggies (9-13, 2-8) just won their first road game of the season 68-59 over Missouri. But before that they had dropped six straight conference games. That has turned up the heat on eight-year coach Billy Kennedy.

While the Bulldogs talked about and are quite aware of all the things A&M does well and not so well, it is clear this is a team that is looking decidedly inward. Georgia knows now that 2018-19 is not going to be a memorable season from a winning standspoint but the Bulldogs are eager to show progress and perhaps point back to a season low-point representing a turn-around junction in their first season under Crean.

“Everbody’s mindset is just one getting a W, of course,” junior guard Jordan Harris said. “We’re getting closer and we’re already close and we just want to get tighter as the season goes along.”

Said Crean: “We have to play with a level of spirit and passion and toughness. That’s a high demand every day. When that didn’t happen the way I like to see it happen I think I let it get to me that day. I can’t do that. That’s not a reflection about how I feel about them; that’s not a reflection of how I feel about us. It’s not about blame and I never should have let that enter my mind.”

The irony is Crean made his apology on the eve of gaining a commitment from the highest-rated recruiting prospect in the history of the Georgia basketball program. Anthony “Antman” Edwards gave the Bulldogs and Crean his pledge at a ceremony at Atlanta’s Holy Spirit Prep at 9 a.m. Monday morning.

Since Edwards, a 6-foot-5, 215-pound combo guard, has not yet signed a national letter-of-intent, Crean could not comment on him specifically. But he acknowledged that it had been a good day and he believes Georgia’s basketball future is bright.

“Generally speaking, there’s no if you’re in the state of Georgia that you need to go anywhere else,” Crean said. “Everything is here. It starts not only with the beauty of the campus and it extends to the unreal quality of the education. I don’t have a degree from here, but you get around enough people that do and you work with people that have been here a while and see how people feel about this place and you realize that spirit and energy is here. It translates over into the athletic side and we’re seeing it now on the basketball side. … If you want the best in the game and educationally, it’s all right here.”

The post WATCH: Georgia coach Tom Crean issues profuse apology for remarks after Ole Miss game appeared first on DawgNation.

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  • ATHENS Former Georgia football receiver Jeremiah 'J.J.' Holloman has entered his name into the NCAA transfer portal after being dismissed from the Bulldogs team last Friday. Holloman was set to be the go-to target on a Georgia team expected to compete for the SEC championship this season before a police report surfaced in which he allegedly admitted to striking an ex-girlfriend following the 2018 UGA G-Day game. The victim did not file a report of the incident that allegedly occurred on April 22, 2018, with the University of Georgia Police Department until June 2, 2019. The police report states that the victim 'did not want to pursue an investigation for this incident' and 'wouldn't want him to be subject to criminal charges.' Due to that, the police report lists the case as 'inactive.' Georgia coach Kirby Smart issued a statement after the police report surfaced in the media, first in Holloman's hometown paper, the Covington News. 'We expect every member of our team to uphold the highest standards and values of the University of Georgia and Georgia football,' Smart said. 'It is disappointing when this does not happen.' RELATED: Georgia title hopes take hit, transfers must step up The Bulldogs lost three receivers to the NFL Draft along with their top receiving tight end from the 2018 season. Holloman's dismissal leaves Georgia without its top five pass catchers from last season. Georgia will likely lean heaviest on incoming Miami graduate transfer Lawrence Cager, along with 2018 transfer Demetris Robertson and returning senior Tyler Simmons at the start of fall camp. UGA also added Tennessee graduate transfer tight end Eli Wolf. The Bulldogs also lost three players to transfers during this offseason. Backup freshman quarterback Justin Fields elected to transfer to Ohio State, freshman tight end Luke Ford chose to transfer back to his home state of Illinois, and reserve linebacker Jaden Hunter transferred to Western Kentucky. Fields was granted immediate eligibility with the Buckeyes, but Ford's request for a waiver to play immediately has been denied. Ford had high-profile attorney Tom Mars helping him make his case, leaving some surprised by the result. Mars helped paved the way for Fields' successful bid to gain immediate eligibility. Hunter played in only four games last season, which constitutes a redshirt under new NCAA rules. Former Georgia defensive back Deangelo Gibbs was suspended indefinitely when he transferred to the University of Tennessee, where he will be eligible to play this season. Former UGA reserve safety Tray Bishop, once a 4-star U.S. Army All-American recruit from Dawson, Ga, is also in the transfer portal. Bishop took part in the 2018 G-Day Game before being arrested in May of 2018 as a result of a 2017 incident. He did not appear in any games for Georgia. The post Former Georgia WR Jeremiah J.J.' Holloman enters NCAA transfer portal, his case inactive appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia basketball freshman Anthony 'Antman' Edwards has yet to play a second in a college game, but already, he's a legend in the making. RELATED: High-flying Antman' dazzles in McDonald's All-American Game Edwards, who's expected to start for Coach Tom Crean's Bulldogs this season, is being projected as the No. 1 overall pick by Bleacher Report in its 'Way-Too-Soon 2020 NBA Lottery Mock Draft.' 'He's a scoring 2-guard with secondary playmaking ability in the mold of Victor Oladipo,' writes Jonathan Wasserman, comparing the UGA freshman to the top-five NBA pick Crean developed at Indiana. 'Edwards has developed into a ball-screen weapon who can also create his own shot with drives, pull-ups and step-backs.' Edwards recently sat down with the WSB Bulldogs Game Day show and made it clear his mindset is to make it about 'team' at Georgia. 'I came to Georgia where we're a team, we were all highly recruited,' said Edwards, a consensus top-five national recruit out of Atlanta's Holy Spirit Prepatory School. 'We're in this together, no one is separate, and I love all my guys,' he said. 'We're all gelling together, getting to know each other, spending time with each other, building our chemistry and trying to get better as a team.' How's life at @UGABasketball with all the new recruits now in Athens? Here's Ant Man, Anthony Edwards! Go Dawgs! More on the Dawgs Saturdays at 10am on @WSBbulldogs on @wsbtv. pic.twitter.com/Gx2fUcZ4Ek Bulldogs Game Day (@WSBbulldogs) June 25, 2019 Some of that time together has been spent on the football field for conditioning, pushing sleds. DAWG SLEDS pic.twitter.com/SscBZ1PPCL Georgia Basketball (@UGABasketball) June 25, 2019 'We're gonna really kick the training up this offseason after this mandatory seven-day break,' Crean said after last season. 'This is not going to be business as usual.' The post WATCH: Georgia basketball's Anthony Antman' Edwards already projected No. 1 in NBA draft appeared first on DawgNation.
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  • ATHENS It has been said that perception can overtake reality, and while in some instances that's true, it doesn't apply to SEC football. So while it's always a fun read to pick up the preseason magazines, people do so knowing the season will bear out where teams really stand, and how good players and position groups really are. That said, it's worth reviewing how Nashville-based Athlon Magazine editors Steven Lassan and Mitch Light view Georgia, from their preseason rank, to how they think the Bulldogs' position groups stack up. Georgia is the magazine's preseason No. 3 team, and Athlon is predicting the Bulldogs run the table in the regular season before losing to Alabama in the SEC Championship Game. That seems to be the most common narrative across the country: Until the Bulldogs finish the job and beat the Crimson Tide, people won't be convinced. RELATED: Tebow says Kirby ahead of schedule, but needs to beat Bama Never mind that Georgia has led or been tied with the Tide118 minutes and 54 seconds of 120 minutes and 281 of 290 plays of the past two meetings in the CFP title game and SEC title game. Here's where Athlon has the Georgia position groups ranked among the top five, and a quick take on whether it's too high, or too low: Running backs 1. Alabama; 2. Georgia; 3. Florida; 4. Vanderbilt; 5. Auburn About right. If the UGA backfield stays healthy QB Jake Fromm and D'Andre Swift the Bulldogs will beat Alabama in the SEC Championship Game and can claim the best RB unit. Wide receivers 1. Alabama; 2. Florida; 3. Texas A&M; 4. LSU; 5. Missouri Too low. The rankings go seven deep, and Georgia is among those seven. It's understandable, but considering how transfers Lawrence Cager and Demetris Robertson project, UGA should be top 5. Offensive line 1. Georgia; 2. Alabama; 3. Missouri; 4. Auburn; 5. LSU. Spot on. Georgia has six offensive linemen returning with starting experience, including three former FWAA Freshman All-Americans. Four of the five projected starters are likely top 100 NFL Draft picks in 2020. Defensive line 1. Auburn, 2. Alabama; 3. Florida; 4. Texas A&M; 5. LSU; 6. Georgia About right. Sophomore Jordan Davis ranks is a rising star, but this is UGA's weakest group, and that's alarming considering there are five seniors in the rotation. Linebackers 1. Alabama; 2. Georgia; 3. LSU; 4. Mississippi State; 5. Florida Too high. Tae Crowder leads unsettled group. Can Monty Rice stay healthy? Sort out: Azeez Ojulari, Nolan Smith, Brenton Cox, Jermaine Johnson, Adam Anderson, Walter Grant, Nakobe Dean, Channing Tindall, Robert Beal Jr., Quay Walker and Nate McBride. Defensive backs 1. LSU, 2. Florida, 3. Alabama, 4. Georgia, 5. Auburn. Too low. Richard LeCounte and J.R. Reed are the best safety duo in the league, and Eric Stokes and Tyson Campbell rank among the league's best cornerbacks. There's quality depth, as well, with Otis Reese, Divaad Wilson, and Tyrique McGhee pushing, and newcomers DJ Daniel and Tyrique Stevenson impressing. The post Georgia football position groups SEC ranking with Athlon, too high or too low appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Welcome to Good Day, UGA , your one-stop shop for Georgia footballnews and takes. Check us out every weekday morning for everything you need to know about Georgia football, recruiting, basketball and more. The best former 3-star, 4-star and 5-star prospects on the Georgia football team All recruiting rankings are based on 247Sports Composite rankings 3-star recruit: J.R. Reed, senior safety Despite all of Georgia's recruiting success over the past three cycles, Georgia will still be getting a number of contributions from 3-star recruits in 2019. On the offensive side of the ball, Solomon Kindley will be holding things down at left guard. He's started double-digit games in each of the last two seasons, and barring an injury will do so again. Running back Brian Herrien also figures to play an important role, as does wide receiver Tyler Simmons, following the dismissal of Jeremiah Holloman. But it's on the defensive side of the ball where there is even more 3-star talent. Monty Rice is expected to be a starter at one of the inside linebacker spots. Cornerback Eric Stokes had an excellent spring after a strong close to the 2018 season. And he might not even end up being the best 3-star prospect in the secondary, with senior J.R. Reed entering his third season as a starter. Reed wasn't highly thought of as a recruit or as a transfer from Tulsa. But he's become a key piece in the Georgia secondary. After bypassing the 2019 NFL Draft, Reed is expected to be a leader for the Georgia defense in 2019. And it's a challenge that the former No. 1856th ranked prospect in the country is ready for entering his final season in Athens. 'I have to take my role more seriously,' Reed said of his senior season. 'It is a different role than I have had in the past. Now, a lot of it comes on your shoulders. We just have to get everybody leaning in the same direction.' Related: Georgia safety J.R. Reed puts NFL dream on hold to pursue championship goals with Bulldogs 4-star recruit: Andrew Thomas, junior offensive tackle In the four recruiting classes that Kirby Smart has signed, he's landed a total of 58 4-star prospects. Some of them have played well above that already high ranking, as several multi-year starters on Georgia's 2019 team were 4-star recruits. Perhaps the most important 4-star recruit Smart has landed is quarterback Jake Fromm. He was ranked as the No. 44 overall player in the 2017 class, just missing out on 5-star status. In his two seasons at Georgia, he's racked up 23 wins as a starter and thrown 54 touchdown passes. Defensively, nose guard Jordan Davis proved to be a huge difference-maker on the defensive line last season, while outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari has been pegged as a possible breakout player by ESPN. But in terms of pure talent and how they rank amongst their peers, there is no better 4-star recruit on Georgia's 2019 roster than left tackle Andrew Thomas. As a freshman, he started every game at right tackle for a team that played for a national championship. As a sophomore, he started 13 games at left tackle and earned First Team All-SEC honors in doing so. As a recruit, he was the No. 45 overall prospect in the 2017 class, one spot below Fromm. Next April, he's got a very realistic chance of being the first offensive tackle taken in the NFL draft. And while Thomas might not grab or garner a ton of headlines, he might end up being the most talented player on Georgia's team, regardless of their high school recruiting ranking. 5-star recruit: D'Andre Swift, junior running back Georgia has signed 18 5-star recruits under Smart, the most in the country. He's signed a 5-star prospect at every position group and in 2019 signed the No. 1 overall player in the country in Nolan Smith. Guys like offensive tackle Isaiah Wilson and safety Richard LeCounte are both entering their second seasons as starters. Linebacker Nakobe Dean and Smith had standout springs for Georgia. And given Holloman's dismissal, there's a chance we're talking a lot about freshman wide receiver George Pickens come the end of the 2019 season. But running back D'Andre Swift like he often does against opposing defense has put a healthy gap between himself in the field. After rushing for over 600 yards in his freshman season, he topped the 1,000-yard mark as a sophomore. Swift was rated as the No. 33 overall prospect in the 2017 class and just barely earned his 5-star status. Related: NFL draft expert explains what 2 traits really help D'Andre Swift shine Swift is expected to be the focal point of the Georgia offense heading into his junior and possibly final season in Athens. If he can improve off of what he did in 2018, there's going to be a very good chance that Georgia has an incredibly special 2019. UGA WR commit Marcus Rosemy wins Rivals Five-Star Challenge MVP Georgia wide receiver Marcus Rosemy isn't a 5-star prospect. But after his performance in Atlanta on Tuesday, he might be headed that way. Rosemy was named the wide receiver MVP of the Rivals Five-Star Challenge, which featured some of the top wide receiver prospects in the country. The Fort Lauderdale, Fla., native showed off some of his impressive ball skills in Mercedes-Benz Stadium. #UGA commit Marcus Rosemy comes to #Rivals5StarChallenge against a field of the nation's best and walks away as wide receiver MVP. Earned it. pic.twitter.com/hUvSuBOCio Jake Reuse (@ReuseRecruiting) June 25, 2019 Recent 4-star UGA commit WR Marcus Rosemy and QB Brock Vandagriff have been on the same page so far in the #Rivals5StarChallenge 7-on-7 tournament. This was 1 of 3 connections this drive. @ReuseRecruiting @SmallwoodTrent @patrickgarbin @UGASportscom pic.twitter.com/WbqP9AastQ Jack Austin (@jackaustin663) June 25, 2019 #UGA WR commit Marcus Rosemy pulls down the tough grab. #RivalsChallenge pic.twitter.com/4Iy9qPceBw Trent Smallwood (@SmallwoodTrent) June 25, 2019 Rosemy committed to the Bulldogs last week, as he ended up picking Georgia over the Florida Gators. He is rated as the No. 6 overall wide receiver in the class and the No. 39 overall prospect. If he were to just remain at those rankings, he would be the third highest ranked wide receiver Georgia has signed in the past decade, behind only 2019 signees George Pickens and Dominick Blaylock. Related: Expectations rise for freshmen George Pickens, Dominick Blaylock following Jeremiah Holloman dismissal Rosemy is the highest rated of the three wide receiver commits in Georgia's 2020 recruiting class. The other two wide receivers in the class are 4-star prospect Justin Robinson and 3-star prospect Corey Wren. Like Rosemy, Wren also committed to the program last week. Georgia has the No. 4 overall recruiting class in the 2020 cycle, behind only Clemson, Alabama and LSU. 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