MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Georgia is planning to use a lot of defensive backs on Friday. It may have one less available than it expected.
Tyrique McGhee, the freshman cornerback and probably the “next man up” if a starter gets hurt, himself is dealing with an injury. McGhee was working on the side with head athletic trainer Ron Courson on Tuesday, and then was not with the second team during drills in the media viewing period.
Georgia is already down two cornerbacks who were on the second team: Sophomores Rico McGraw and Juwuan Briscoe have departed the team with the intention to transfer. And safety Kirby Choates is not with the team during bowl practice, also a candidate to transfer.
So maybe that’s why defensive coordinator and secondary coach Mel Tucker was particularly antsy for freshman Mecole Hardman to hustle his way during a switch in drills.
“Me-co! Me-co, come on!” Tucker yelled at the highly-touted freshman, who has yet to see significant action this year, but could be in line now if there’s a first-team injury.
As for that first team, it’s status quo. The Bulldogs are practicing a lot of dime formation, as they have in preparation for TCU and its pass-heavy, spread offense. The starting cornerbacks remain Malkom Parrish and Deandre Baker, with Maurice Smith at the star, Dominick Sanders and Quincy Mauger at safety, and Aaron Davis playing the “money” role in the middle of the field. Roquan Smith is at inside linebacker.
Some other updates from Tuesday’s viewing period:
- Tyler Catalina continues to work with the second team at left tackle, with Isaiah Wynn at left tackle and Dyshon Sims at left guard.
- Natrez Patrick also continues to sit out while the first and second teams are working, with Roquan Smith alone at inside linebacker (and Aaron Davis beside him) while Reggie Carter and Juwan Taylor work with the second team.
- Athletics director Greg McGarity has been at bowl practice this week, joined by associate A.D. Carla Williams and compliance director Jim Booz.