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Kirby Smart names Georgia football’s players of the week
Georgia football announced its six players of the week for the 31-10 over Appalachian State via Kirby Smart’s Twitter account on Tuesday, with two players each coming from the offense, defense, special teams.
The offensive players of the week were wide receiver Javon Wims and left tackle Isaiah Wynn. Wims caught 3 passes for 81 yards and a touchdown in the first game of his senior season. More importantly, he was a steadying presence for Jake Fromm when replaced the injured Jacob Eason, giving the freshman a receiver he could rely on to score a touchdown and set up another. Wynn also received honors for the offense as the most consistent player on a line that paved the way for 368 yards of total offense.
The secondary ran the table for defensive players of the week honors, as J.R. Reed and Dominick Sanders received the awards. In his first game with the Bulldogs after transferring from Tulsa following the 2015 season, Reed finished with 5 tackles including 1 for loss. He was active around the ball all game and had a role in a first-quarter fumble by App State QB Taylor Lamb that put the Mountaineers in an early hole. Sanders finished the game with 3 tackles including 1 for a loss and a pass defensed. With 12 career interceptions, he sits one off Smart and a slew of other former Dawgs for fifth-place in career interceptions in the UGA record book.
Perhaps the most deserving honors were the two winners on special teams, punter Cameron Nizialek and kicker Rodrigo Blankenship. The two specialists kept Appalachian State in a difficult position all night. In his first game with the Bulldogs, Nizialek averaged 43.8 yards per punt and didn’t allow a single return. Blankenship sent all 6 of his kickoffs into the end zone, 5 of which went for touchbacks. That’s a drastic improvement from last season, when just 20 of his 55 kickoffs went for touchbacks. Blankenship also added a 23-yard field goal and 4 extra points.
— Coach Kirby Smart (@KirbySmartUGA) September 5, 2017
Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly: ‘I really like Jake Fromm’
Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly has spent all offseason preparing to face Eason when the Bulldogs travel to South Bend this weekend. Instead he’ll face Fromm, a player he has much less tape on. But Kelly did sound impressed by the little he has seen of Fromm when discussing Georgia’s new starting quarterback in a press conference Tuesday. From Chip Towers of DawgNation:
“I really like Jake Fromm,” Kelly said at his weekly news conference Tuesday at the Guglielmino Athletic Center. “Everybody says, ‘Well, he’s a freshman and he’s only had a couple of snaps.’ But, look, I’m not an expert, but I’ve been in this game for a while and he certainly has a presence about him and he’s very comfortable running the Georgia offense.
“We go into this game expecting to see a guy in Jake very capable of running that offense and doing the things necessary to be successful.”
Jacob Eason could travel to South Bend
Although he’s been ruled out of playing against Notre Dame, Smart indicated Tuesday that there is a chance Eason travels with the team to South Bend.
“He’s been involved in meetings, he’s been involved in everything,” Smart said, according to Seth Emerson of DawgNation. “I hope he’s throwing soon. I hope he’s on the trip. I wish he could play.”
Dominick Sanders is ready to ‘punish’ Notre Dame
When Georgia hired Smart, most fans hoped he would bring along with him the hard-nosed, single-minded approach that was a trademark of Alabama’s defenses during his time as defensive coordinator under Nick Saban. Against Appalachian State, we got a potential glimpse of that, as the defense was all-business and no-nonsense on the way to a shutout through three quarters.
Notre Dame will be a trickier proposition, with three players who rushed for more than 100 yards in the season-opening win over Temple, two of the best offensive linemen in college football, and one of the nation’s elite wide receivers. But even in the face of that, a single-minded approach is showing, as Sanders waved off any talk Notre Dame’s history and mystique in favor of one goal: punishment. From Emerson:
“Not really, I didn’t really know anything about that,” Sanders said. “But you know, my main thing is coming out and punishing them from the start. I really don’t care about what they’ve got going on.”
So, a reporter followed up, he doesn’t care about the history of Notre Dame, and its stadium, which Sanders and the Bulldogs visit on Saturday?
“Oh no, no, no,” Sanders said. “I just care about my guys doing what we’ve gotta do: Punishing them from the start.”
It’s only talk right now, but it’s the talk you want to hear.
Georgia football in the polls
There wasn’t much movement for Georgia on the polls front after the win in Week 1. The Bulldogs held steady from the preseason at No. 15 in both the Associated Press and coaches polls. In the season’s first SEC Country Power Poll, which ranked all teams in the SEC, the Bulldogs clocked in at No. 4, the top team in the SEC East.
Dawgs on Twitter
— Georgia Football (@FootballUGA) September 5, 2017
— DawgNation (@DawgNation) September 5, 2017
— Georgia Track&Field (@UGATrack) September 5, 2017
— Georgia Volleyball (@UGAVolleyball) September 5, 2017
It’s hard to look this good.
When your dog drives a better car than you pic.twitter.com/yoZHFSvdyl
— Adorable Dog (@Lifewithcutedog) September 6, 2017
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