WATCH: Why Georgia coach Kirby Smart and Dan Lanning pulling double duty
ATHENS — Georgia coach Kirby Smart and his defensive staff will be pulling double duty in preparation for Vanderbilt, a team that’s yet to announce its starting quarterback.
Commodores coach Derek Mason said last week he might not announce a starter until the 7:30 p.m. kickoff on Saturday at Vanderbilt Stadium.
Former Vanderbilt quarterback and ESPN analyst Jordan Rodgers said on SEC Now that Mason is looking for a competitive advantage.
“From a strategic standpoint, you want to hold that close to your chest, so that Georgia doesn’t know who to game plan for,” Rodgers said.
“You’ve got Riley Neal who played a lot of football and set records at Ball State, and you’ve got a guy in Deuce Wallace who has had an up and down career on and off the field, being suspended last year and they have two different skillsets.
“Deuce can run round a little more than Riley Neal, so that’s why you need to keep that close to your chest, you look at skillset, you look at the youth or veteran play, and you decide on what your team needs.”
Smart said on Monday that Georgia is planning on seeing both quarterbacks and have prepared for both styles.
“We expect to be able to see both of those guys, (because) if one of those plays the whole game, it probably means he is playing well,” Smart said. “We have to prepare for both, be ready to face both. It’s not going to be as much about those guys as it is the guys around them, because the guys around them are really good players.”
The No. 3-ranked Bulldogs figure to pin their ears back and apply pressure regardless of who’s under center.
As for the “guys around them,” Smart said Commodores tailback Ke’Shawn Vaughn, receiver Kalija Lipscomb and tight end Jared Pinkney are as good at their positions as anyone UGA will see.
Lipscomb had plenty to say about both of the Commodores quarterbacks at SEC Media Days.
“Riley is a bigger guy, but he can move well, really strong arm, more similar to Kyle (Shurmur), but no shot to Kyle, but he’s a little bit faster,” Lipscomb said. “Deuce is shorter, but I would say he’s a little bit more mobile, he’s kinda got that Russell Wilson in him, he’s able to scramble and extend plays, he’s a smart guy.
“I think he (Wallace) thinks things out three times before he throws the pass. I’m looking forward to playing with whoever steps on the field, they’ll be great.”