Who are best players Georgia will face this season?
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Know your opponent
We’ve spent the last few weeks talking a lot about baseball, softball, track and field and even a bit of basketball, which is great. Although we try to talk about college football each and every day, it’s good to have some other sports to spotlight when there is nothing happening in the college football world.
But college football is our bread and butter, so we’re getting back to basics with a quintessential summertime college football blog post — ranking players. On this Tuesday, we’re ranking the best individual opponents Georgia will face this season.
I think that pretty much explains itself, so let’s get into it:
- 5. Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina — Deebo Samuel made a name for himself as a shifty, dynamic playmaker for the Gamecocks as a sophomore in 2016. Last year, he broke his left leg in Week 3 and missed the majority of the season, including the Georgia game. But in the three games he played, he racked up 15 catches for 250 yards and 3 touchdowns. Georgia will have to find a way to contain him when it faces South Carolina on Sept. 8. A few explosive plays from Samuel could be enough to put the Gamecocks in contention for an upset.
- 4. Benny Snell, RB, Kentucky — People don’t pay attention to Kentucky football, so Benny Snell has grown into one of the top running backs in the SEC over the last few years in practical anonymity. He’s rushed for more than 1,000 yards in each of his first two seasons in Lexington, finishing with a haul of 1,318 yards and 18 TDs at 5.1 yards per carry in 2017. He’s rushed for 208 yards and 3 TDs in two career games against Georgia, which is about as good as you can ask against a back as good as Snell.
- 3. Drew Lock, QB, Missouri — When Drew Lock gets going, the Missouri offense really hums. And with 8,695 yards and 71 TDs in his career, it’s safe to say that Lock gets going often. Georgia fans know this well. They watched him pass for 253 yards and 4 TDs in Sanford Stadium last season, with two of those touchdowns coming on passes of longer than 60 yards. Pound for pound, Missouri is no match for Georgia, but Lock alone running that offense is enough to test the Bulldogs.
- 2. Derrick Brown, DT, Auburn — When Auburn snags a top recruit from the Peach State, it stings Georgia fans twice: first when the player signs and, then again, when he reaches his potential. We’ve reached the second stage with Derrick Brown, a native of Buford. He finished his sophomore season with 57 tackles and 9.5 tackles for loss, an impressive total but not as impressive as his general play on the line. At 6-foot-5 and 315 pounds, Brown is big, fast, scary and can play in pretty much any position in the trenches.
- 1. Devin White, ILB, LSU — Last year, Devin White was named SEC Defensive Player of the Week four times. With Roquan Smith now in the NFL, White becomes the new best linebacker in the SEC. He was named All-SEC first team alongside Smith and probably would’ve been drafted in the first round of the NFL draft if sophomores were eligible. They’re not, so White is Georgia’s problem now.
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UGA signee Nadab Joseph enrolls in JUCO
Four-star Georgia defensive back signee Nadab Joseph has enrolled at Independence (Kan.) Community College. Chip Towers of DawgNation reports that Joseph plans to spend 18 months — or two football seasons — at Independence before re-signing with a Power 5 program. Joseph reportedly stills plans to attend Georgia when he qualifies.
Joseph is the second recruit from the highly regarded Class of 2018 who won’t come to Athens as a freshman. Previously, 3-star DT Tramel Walthour enrolled in a junior college.
‘A sniper’s attitude’
Petros Kyprianou has quietly built UGA track and field into a powerhouse, but after the program’s showing this year, he won’t be quiet any longer. Kyprianou is one of the star coaches at Georgia now, and he received the attention that comes with it Monday during his first press availability since the Georgia men claimed the national championship. From Towers:
“I knew having this type of quality, we’d make it happen,” Kyprianou said Monday. “It comes down to recruiting and good coaching. You can get the top dogs to come in, but it takes a special support cast to get them to perform at that level. Showing up and showing out, it’s what defines Georgia track and field.”
That’s what has really set apart Kyprianou’s teams so far. They seem to perform at their peak-level best on the national stage.
“When it comes down to it, you have to have a sniper’s attitude,” Kyprianou said. “One shot, one kill.”
Odds & Ends
- Did Vince Dooley receive a big raise from UGA after winning the 1980 national title?
- One thing national media gets wrong about UGA
- UGA recruiting: What do weekend moves say about Bulldogs’ 2019 class?
Dawgs on Twitter
It’s been a good last 3 years at Georgia. Lucky, thankful and blessed with great athletes and staff. Go Dawgs! pic.twitter.com/ELRO1TuMEX
— Petros Kyprianou (@petrosdeca) June 11, 2018
It’s official! ✍️
Thank you UGA for an amazing 3 years and for also preparing me for this next step in my career. I couldn’t thank God, my family and my friends enough for supporting me every step of the way. Let the journey begin! #GoDawgs #GoPadres #8️⃣2️⃣8️⃣ pic.twitter.com/NPmIk6P6bC
— Michael Curry (@MichaelCurry13) June 11, 2018
— Georgia Football (@FootballUGA) June 11, 2018
— Enzo the samoyed (@Fluffyface_enzo) June 11, 2018
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