‘Arik is a beast’: Teammates rave about Arik Gilbert after strong Georgia football spring performance

Georgia football-Arik Gilbert-spring game
During the G-Day scrimmage on Dooley Field at Sanford Stadium in Athens, Ga., on Saturday, April 16, 2022.(Photo by Mackenzie Miles)
Mackenzie Miles

ATHENS — The best sign that Arik Gilbert could be a contributing member of the 2022 Georgia football team wasn’t either of his two touchdown catches. Nor was it the multiple pass interference penalties he drew on the day. His late-game grab to set up the black team’s final score wasn’t it either.

No, the biggest positive from Gilbert on Saturday was the massive smile he flashed throughout the day. He looked happy to be on the field, contributing to Georgia.

Wide receiver Kearis Jackson estimated Gilbert had lost close to 30 pounds from the start of the year when he rejoined the team back in January. His conditioning has gotten better, but there’s still room to improve. He’s still learning the finer points of the offense as well, with Smart noting Gilbert had two missed assignments in the run game.

Smart said that Gilbert has become a great story this spring, given where he was just a few short months ago. Saturday served as a reminder of what he could be if he continues to improve on the little things.

“He’ll be the first to tell you he’s got to continue to grow, to get in shape, to change his body, and he can get an opportunity to help us,” Smart said. “With the two other guys we’ve got coming back, it makes it a luxury of those guys being able to make us a special football team.”

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