Welcome to Good Day, UGA, your one-stop shop for Georgia football news and takes. Check us out every weekday morning for everything you need to know about Georgia football, recruiting, basketball and more.
Georgia football and RBU will only get better in the coming years
Georgia has been able to claim the RBU, or running back university, for a while now. From Herschel Walker in the 80’s to Garrison Hearst and Terrell Davis, Georgia has been churning out elite running backs for decades. And now, there will be two more Bulldogs lining up at the running back position in the Super Bowl.
Todd Gurley, despite a poor NFC Championship game for the Los Angeles Rams, is one of the best running backs in football. He led the league in touchdowns this season, in addition to rushing for 1,251 yards. He’s a big reason the Rams will be playing in the Super Bowl.
As for the New England Patriots, rookie Sony Michel led them in rushing this year. The former Bulldog has really turned it on the playoffs. He’s rushed for 5 touchdowns in the Patriots’ two playoff wins while also rushing for 242 yards. The last running back to have 5 rushing touchdowns in the playoffs? It was Davis back in 1997, and he went on to be named Super Bowl MVP that season.
Georgia fans shouldn’t forget about Nick Chubb either, who very likely would’ve rushed for well over 1,000 yards this season had the Browns been smart enough to make him the starting running back at the beginning of the season.
All three of those guys are under the age of 25. Gurley is already the highest paid running back in the league. And if Michel and Chubb continue to progress, which they probably will, it’s going to make Georgia an even more attractive option for future running backs.
Kendall Milton, a 5-star running back in the 2020 class out of Clovis, Cali., took almost immediate notice of the fact that both leading rushers in the Super Bowl played at Georgia.
2 UGA running backs both in the Super Bowl….sheeeeesh
— KENDALL MILTON² (@therealkmilt) January 21, 2019
Georgia is going to need to land an elite running back like Milton in the 2020 class, given that running back D’Andre Swift will be eligible for the 2020 NFL Draft and senior Brian Herrien will have exhausted his college eligibility.
Georgia fans should feel pretty comfortable about Glanding at least one of the eight running backs ranked among the Top 40 overall prospects in the 2020 recruiting cycle. In addition to having the incredible recruiting tool of Gurley and Michel in the Super Bowl, it also has Dell McGee as running backs coach. McGee, along with being a great running backs coach, is one of the best recruiters in the country, as he’s landed the likes of Zamir White, Brenton Cox and Swift.
And when you factor in what offensive line coach Sam Pittman is doing with the offensive line, what running back wouldn’t want to come to Georgia?
McGee has already put together an impressive running back room for 2019 with Swift, White, Herrien and James Cook. Even with Elijah Holyfield moving on from RBU to the NFL, running back is going to be a position of strength for Georgia. And with Michel, Gurley and Chubb continuing to represent for RBU, more and more elite recruits will want to be a part of RBU.
D’Andre Walker to miss Senior Bowl
Another Bulldog who is trying to make it into the NFL is outside linebacker D’Andre Walker. But he’s hit a snag right before one of the biggest weeks of his football life.
Walker announced on Monday that he would not be participating in the Senior Bowl this week as he is still recovering from the groin injury he suffered in the SEC championship game against Alabama.
Unfortunately, I won’t be attending the Senior Bowl. I will be getting a second opinion on my groin this week to ensure I’ll be ready for the combine. I am very disappointed because it’s such a great opportunity to showcase my talent.
— D'Andre Walker (@DAndreWalker15) January 21, 2019
Obviously, being healthy for Walker is imperative for the NFL combine, which is set to begin on Feb. 26 in Indianapolis. But this is also a bummer in the sense that Walker really could’ve used the Senior Bowl to boost his draft stock.
A number of prospects over the years have used the Senior Bowl to improve their draft stock. And while Walker put up an impressive senior season at Georgia — a team-best 7.5 sacks on the season even while missing the Sugar Bowl against Texas — it is loaded draft class at his position.
Last week, Mel Kiper Jr. listed Walker as the No. 8 outside linebacker prospect in the class. He likely would’ve risen had he been able to participate this week, especially after how he harassed Tua Tagovailoa in the SEC championship game. A number of people, myself included, believe that Georgia would’ve beaten Alabama had Walker been able to finish the game.
But Walker’s health is the most important thing at this point. And if you don’t believe me, here is what former Georgia tight end Arthur Lynch had to say on the importance of starting your NFL career healthy.
“In the NFL if you get hurt right away, it’s very hard to bounce back, and if you don’t get film on tape, it’s hard to bounce around the league and make a name for yourself,” Lynch said.
Georgia will still have two players in Mobile, Ala., this week as long snapper Nick Moore and defensive lineman Jonathan Ledbetter will be participating. DawgNation’s Mike Griffith will be providing coverage all week as well. This year’s NFL draft is set for April 25 and will take place in Nashville, Tenn.
Best Georgia football stories from around DawgNation
- Dream school? Junior receiver E.J. Williams just had a big unofficial visit to UGA
- Georgia football podcast: Recruits have strong reaction to UGA hiring Charlton Warren
- 3 things: What’s next for Georgia football and ever-patient Kirby Smart?
- Former UGA star Todd Gurley posts funny picture on Instagram after controversial NFC Championship
- Kirby Smart continues to make the Georgia-Florida rivalry more fun
- Georgia football: Bulldogs want Mark-Antony Richards to be a ‘Freak’ in Athens
- WATCH: Georgia football workout video with D’Andre Swift, ‘sky is the limit’
- Georgia WR Terry Godwin wins offensive MVP in East-West Shrine Game
- Georgia basketball ice cold down the stretch, loses 62-52 to Florida
Dawgs on Twitter
I understand none of this matters going into college. I’m going to have to prove myself all over again but I just wanted to show viewers what I’m capable of…February 6th📝 pic.twitter.com/4NFemCTlpc
— Kaiir Elam. (@Easymoney_Kai) January 22, 2019
Just getting started… pic.twitter.com/KNsWOg3Cen
— MarShawn Lloyd (@LloydMarshawn) January 22, 2019
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) January 21, 2019
Let it sink in that either Todd Gurley or Sony Michel will have a Super Bowl ring within the next two weeks. #RBU
— Barstool UGA (@ugabarstool) January 21, 2019
Good Dawg of the Day
This is Ginger. She just got new banana pajamas. Anxious to know what you think of them. 13/10 they’re absolutely delightful, Ginger pic.twitter.com/YxfCUvZ0xO
— WeRateDogs™ (@dog_rates) January 22, 2019