ATHENS — Georgia football Freshman All-American nose tackle Jordan Davis is expected to be cleared for spring drills after missing the Sugar Bowl.
Davis, a 6-foot-6, 325-pounder from Charlotte, N.C., is expected to have a major impact as a sophomore. Davis emerged halfway through last season, finishing with 25 tackles, 3 QB hurries and 1.5 sacks.
Davis missed the Sugar Bowl after suffering an injury while performing squats in a weightlifting session following the SEC Championship Game. Georgia held Davis out against Texas as a precaution.
Georgia has yet to officially announce the start of spring football drills, but the date is tentatively expected to be March 18.
The Bulldogs were missing three key defensive players in the 28-21 upset loss to the Longhorns. Thorpe Award winner Deandre Baker opted to sit out to avoid risking injury and protect his projected first-round NFL draft stock. UGA sacks leader D’Andre Walker was also out with a groin injury.
The Georgia defensive front was one of the bigger questions entering the 2018 campaign, but the defensive line progressed as the season wore on.
Davis had much to do with that.
“Jordan’s development has been a big bonus for us,” Smart said last October. “He may be one of our best conditioned players now because he spends all of his time conditioning.”
The Bulldogs lose departing senior Ledbetter, but rising seniors Julian Rochester (6-5, 300) and Tyler Clark (6-4, 300) return to anchor what figures to be a strong unit.
ESPN analyst Cole Cubelic took note of Davis’ growth last season.
“He’s big enough to anchor and play the run,” Cubelic said. “And yet, he has the athletic ability to be able to move and be disruptive.”