Welcome to Gimme 5, a weekly Q&A where one member of the DawgNation team answers your questions about the Georgia football program. To ask questions, simply check out the DawgNation forum and your questions could be featured in a future edition of Gimme 5.
Connor Riley answers this week’s questions, ranging from the transfer portal to a recruiting update on a key 2024 recruiting target.
*Questions have been edited for clarity
PGJackson: Is the lack of portal transfers an indication of players not wanting to come to UGA or a reflection of how exceptionally strong the current roster is? It has been implied that Kirby failed to get some guys he really wanted:
Bobe: How long will Dell McGee (Todd) Monken and Glenn Schumann stick around?
Answer: McGee and Schumann are the lone two assistant coaches from Smart’s first staff at Georgia, while Monken is entering his third year with the program.
It helps that all three are very well-compensated at the moment. McGee has been among the highest-paid running back coaches in the country for a while now, with good reason. Monken and Schumann both earned raises this offseason, with Monken now making over $2 million.
The answer is simply as long as someone else doesn’t hire them. Schumann is only 32 years old and entering his first season in an elevated role as Georgia’s co-defensive coordinator. He’s got a bright enough future to where he can be picky with his next job. That was the case for Dan Lanning, who landed the Oregon gig. It would not be a surprise if Schumann were on a similar trajectory.
Monken is a bit older but he does have previous head coaching experience at Southern Miss. He also has an NFL background as well. We know LSU tried to hire Monken this past offseason, so he’s likely to be an attractive candidate once again. But it’s unlikely he leaves Georgia for anything other than a Power 5 head coaching job or an NFL play-calling opportunity.
McGee is the most interesting. Running back coaches rarely get an opportunity to become offensive coordinators. That would seem to block a potential pathway for him in career advancement. But we’ve seen a trend in recent years with position coaches bypassing a coordinator role and becoming a head coach. Sam Pittman landed the Arkansas job, while former Alabama running backs coach Charles Huff is currently the head coach at Marshall.
Given the instability at Auburn, it’s always interesting when that job opens. McGee is an alum and is one of the best recruiters in the country, with strong ties to the state of Georgia. Could the Tigers pull an Arkansas and go after McGee this time? If Bryan Harsin flounders this season it could be something to watch.
Emanresu: Will elite 2024 5 -star ILB Sammy Brown strongly consider Georgia knowing that Jalon Walker, CJ Washington, EJ Lightsey, Raylen Wilson, CJ Allen, and Troy Bowles all are gonna be there with multiple years of eligibility left?
Answer: Yes, Brown has already been on campus multiple times. Glenn Schumann has as strong a track record as any and the Bulldogs are very much in the running for the No. 8 overall player in the 2024 class. It helps that he plays for nearby Jefferson, Ga., and was high school teammates with Malaki Starks.
A year after signing Smael Mondon, Xavian Sorey and Jamon Dumas-Johnson, Schumann earned the signature of Jalon Walker, the No. 48 overall player in the 2022 recruiting class. Georgia plays a rotation of four linebackers and will find a way for guys to play if they’re good enough.
But this question does bring to mind what happened in the 2018, 2019 and 2020 cycles at outside linebacker. In back-to-back classes, Georgia landed Adam Anderson, Jermaine Johnson, Brenton Cox, Azeez Ojulari, and Nolan Smith as edge rushers. It was an incredible recruiting run by Kevin Sherrer and Dan Lanning.
But when the 2020 class rolled around, Georgia was limited in how many outside linebackers it could take. It zeroed in on MJ Sherman early in the process and won the services of the No. 34 overall prospect in the 2020 class. But in doing so, Georgia didn’t get involved with an in-state outside linebacker prospect until it was too late in the recruiting process. That player proved to be Will Anderson, who might be the best player in college football this year.
Time will tell if a similar situation ends up happening with Brown.
EastAtlDawg: I wonder how this duo (of Oregon linebackers Noah Sewell and Justin Flowe) will fair against Georgia?
Answer: From a football nerd standpoint, how Oregon’s linebackers matchup against Georgia’s tight ends should be the most fun aspect of the game.
Georgia fans should remember both Sewell and Flowe from the recruiting trail and they have the athletic ability to hang in coverage. Now doing so against Brock Bowers, Arik Gilbert, Darnell Washington is a much bigger task. Flowe has also battled injuries during his collegiate career as well, leaving him as somewhat of a mystery.
Georgia’s defense was at its best under Lanning when the inside linebackers were making plays. With Sewell and Flowe, he’s positioned to have to strong playmakers at that inside linebacker spot this year.
Related: Dan Lanning shares his thoughts on facing Georgia football in Week 1: ‘Our players are certainly excited’
But as Michigan and Alabama showed last year, covering the Georgia tight ends isn’t an easy task, even if you have the athletes to do so.
PGJackson: Will UGA wear the all-white uniforms this year?
Answer: Smart made it a point to say never say never when asked this at SEC media days. But the Georgia head coach made it pretty clear not to expect them anytime soon. They’ve been very popular with recruits and Smart even gave a tip of the cap to Oregon for how they’ve innovated in the field of jerseys.
But Georgia isn’t itching to pull off the all-white look anytime soon. The last time Georgia wore an alternate uniform came in the 2021 Peach Bowl. Georgia wore alternate uniforms two other times that season, but Smart traditionally only changes things up as a way to get a little more juice out of his team.
Related: Kirby Smart doesn’t close the door on all-white uniforms but says ‘it’s not imminent’
The Bulldogs shouldn’t be lacking that against the Ducks to open the 2022 season.
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