Welcome to your one-stop shop for all the relevant UGA football news and takes every Monday through Friday. In today’s edition, we take a look at what some Georgia players can work on in practice to improve their standing heading into the bowl game and beyond.
What Georgia can improve during bowl practice
Georgia football gets back to (practice) once again on Wednesday. This time in preparation for the Liberty Bowl and TCU. But during bowl practice, the bowl game itself isn’t the only thing the team is working toward. It’s a few weeks when coaches can take stock of what they have in terms of returning players to begin preparations for next season. So, it is imperative for some young players to make strides in order to position themselves for playing time in the future. With that in mind, here are a few things I hope to see from the next few weeks of bowl practice:
Jacob Eason works on the small things
We all know about Eason’s immense talent and physical skills, but he was just a bit off in his first season at Georgia. That’s expected from a player adjusting to the college game. Now is the time to start erasing those flaws. Receivers have dropped far too many passes this season, but Eason needs to do his part and put more touch on short passes. He also needs to see the field better and work on finding the best option in deep ball situations.
One thing coach Kirby Smart said Eason needs to work on is his on-field leadership.
“He’s got to do a better job of commanding the huddle for our team and being a leader, and I think these practices allow him to do that,” Smart said.
Progress from young offensive linemen
On Tuesday, I talked about all the potential talent coming in at offensive line. That’s something Georgia fans should be excited about, but don’t discount the young talent Georgia already has on campus. The hype around players such as Ben Cleveland and Solomon Kindley was curbed a bit when neither of them competed for playing time on a weak offensive line. Although both those guys still have years to reach their full potential, with so many spots opening on the line next season, it would behoove them to start showing their ready to go to the next level ASAP. A lot of that will have to come in the weight room and with offseason training. With a season essentially in the books now, these guys should start showing the intensity day in, day out that it takes to succeed at this level.
Mecole Hardman asserts himself
Hardman was one of the most-hyped recruits in the Class of 2016 but underwhelmed in his first season, which isn’t entirely his fault. He was primarily a receiver in high school before switching to corner upon his arrival in Athens. He’s been a special teams contributor and improved over the course of the year, but it hasn’t clicked quite yet. When it does, Hardman will be able to help Georgia in a few areas. With enough improvement, he can move into the nickel role soon to be vacated by Maurice Smith. Juwuan Briscoe hasn’t covered himself in glory playing second-string corner, so there’s a chance to take that spot. Hardman also has lots of promise in the return game. With Isaiah McKenzie out of Athens in another year, the Bulldogs need to get a ready understudy prepared, and Hardman best fits that build. If he shows out in that area during practice, he could get some returns against TCU, which could lead to more reps next year.
Remember that time …
Remember that time in 1980 that Georgia beat the dog out of TCU, 34-3 to be exact, and (my god) a freshman Herschel Walker rumbled all over every Frog that got in his way.
— Patrick Garbin (@PGarbinDT) December 13, 2016
Good times, man.
- Georgia WR Shaquery Wilson transferring to community college (Andrew Astleford, Dawg Nation)
- Why former UGA silent commitment Monty Rice chose LSU (Jeff Sentell, Dawg Nation)
- Remembering Frank Sinkwich’s 365-yard day against TCU (Loran Smith, Athens Banner-Herald)
- Three things to watch with UGA beginning bowl practices Wednesday (Jason Butt, Macon Telegraph)
- Terrell County’s Tray Bishop de-commits from Auburn. Is Georgia in the mix? (MaconDawg, Dawg Sports)
- Time off between games gave UGA basketball a chance to hone its perimeter defense (Marc Weiszer, Athens Banner-Herald)
This dog has HUGE ears — and an even bigger personality! pic.twitter.com/wguH7134UG
— The Dodo (@dodo) December 13, 2016