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#DGD: Catching up with former Bulldog Brandon Kublanow
In this week’s installment of the #DGD or “Damn Good Dawg” series, we catch up with former Georgia offensive lineman Brandon Kublanow. The former Bulldog played at Georgia from 2013-16 and started for Georgia in each of his last three seasons. He was also a captain on Georgia’s 2016 team, which was Kirby Smart’s first season at the school.
Kublanow knows a thing or two about dealing with different quarterbacks, as he was the starting center on both the 2015 and ’16 teams, which saw the Bulldogs rotate between the likes of Greyson Lambert, Faton Bauta and Jacob Eason as starters.
The former Georgia center and Walton High School graduate has a connection to one of Georgia’s top recruits, as he played with Dominick Blaylock’s older brothers when he was in high school. Blaylock is a 5-star wide receiver commit in Georgia’s 2019 class.
DawgNation: How much have you been able to watch of Georgia this season/how much of the LSU game where you able to watch and what have you seen from them?
Brandon Kublanow: I’ve probably watched every game. The LSU game, I thought we played well, that’s a tough environment to play in. We made mistakes, and I think we looked a little bit young at times. Part of that is just football and LSU was the better team that day and that’s what matters on Saturdays. But overall I thought that we have better talent and better athletes than LSU does. But I know these guys will bounce back pretty quickly after that loss.
DN: In your time at Georgia, you saw the Bulldogs cycle through a number of quarterbacks, both from year-to-year and sometimes even game-to-game. In the course of a season, what’s that like where you have a quarterback who likes things one way and then you have to deal with someone else, especially from a center’s perspective?
BK: I don’t think it’s that much of a difference for the offense. I think for the center it definitely makes a difference because quarterbacks like things a certain way. But Lamont (Gaillard) has done a good job working with both of them a lot. I still think Jake Fromm is our guy until coach Smart says otherwise. But I don’t think there’s a massive difference. You’re always ready for the next man up, so I think they’ll be very prepared if Fields does step in on offense.
DN: You know what it’s like to have a bye week before the Florida game under Kirby Smart. What is that week of preparation like in terms of installing a game plan and just getting healthy?
BK: It’s a work week. They’re working one a couple of different things, doing a little bit more internal things for the first few days. But they’re still getting ready for Florida. You have a long season ahead of you. So you try to get your body right. It’s definitely a work week no doubt about it but then over the weekend, you just try to get as much down time as possible before you have to finish off the rest of the season.
DN: What do you normally do with that time off during the bye week?
BK: On the weekends, you go home and just see friends and family you don’t get to see during the season. Relax as much as possible, pretty much plop down on the couch and eat a bunch of food.
DN: The environment in Jacksonville is pretty different with it being a 50-50 split in a neutral site conference game. What was it like to play in that, where you do have a lot of Georgia fans there but it still isn’t a home game?
BK: That’s a fun game. I would eventually like to see it be a home-and-home because you do miss a home game every other year because of it and the opportunity to recruit. But it’s a fun environment. The 50-50 split, a lot of guys grow up watching that game and CBS does the big aerial shot where half the stadium is blue and half of it is red. It gets pretty loud in there, especially when momentum sways and I think momentum is a big thing in that game. I expect it to be a pretty good game.
DN: I know it didn’t always go the way you would’ve wanted it to go in Jacksonville but is there a special moment or memory that you take away from that series?
BK: Just going out there and competing. Probably the first time I played in it, I remember thinking, ‘Wow this is really something.’ I always grew up a Georgia fan and that’s always one of the biggest games of the year. Everyone sort of sits down at the same time at 3:30. Same time, same place same station, so it’s fun when you’re in it for the first time and say ‘Wow, this is really it.’
DN: You played at Walton High School and Georgia currently has a commit from Walton in 5-star wide receiver Dominick Blaylock, and I know you played with his older brothers. So what do you know about the younger Blaylock and what kind of player Georgia might be getting in him?
BK: If he’s anything like his older brothers, he’s a good kid, comes from a great family and is a really hard worker. I’ve heard really good things about him. I’ve gotten to see Walton play a few times this year, and he’s just such an exciting player. He’s pretty strong too. Sometimes he looks small but then you get up near him, and he’s really strong up close. But I’m excited for him because it’s great to see another Walton kid go on and hopefully have a great career at UGA.
DN: The Florida game is still over a week away but do you think that Georgia is going to be able to bounce back and beat Florida?
BK: It’s hard to tell because you take it week by week but you know they’ll be ready, that’s for sure. When you go into the bye week after a loss, that’s a tough pill to swallow. So you know there’s going to be a lot of hard work involved to prevent that from happening again.
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