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Georgia cornerback Jalen Kimber undergoes season-ending surgery

Georgia defensive back Jalen Kimber (6) during the Bulldogs’ practice session in Athens, Ga., on Monday, Aug. 9, 2021. (Photo by Tony Walsh)
Tony Walsh

ATHENS — Georgia redshirt freshman cornerback Jalen Kimber is underwent season-ending shoulder surgery today.

The Bulldogs are perilously thin in the secondary having lost three former starting cornerbacks and two safeties to the NFL after last season.

Two other defensive backs transferred and are starting at LSU (Major Burns) and Miami (Tyrique Stevenson).

Kimber was a projected starting cornerback for Georgia coming out of spring drills, drawing praise from Coach Kirby Smart.

Kimber was first injured during the strength and conditioning portion of the offseason, but he was attempting to rehab and play his way through the injury.

“Kimber’s very bright, (and) he was able to practice all last year,” Smart said last spring. “The practice you get from the year before, people just forget about.

“But Jalen Kimber was able to go out and actually take reps and work last year, which gives you an advantage because you’ve seen things, you have heard calls, and you have to adjust,” he said.

“The biggest thing with Jalen is continuing to work really hard with the nutrition and weight room to keep adding size, and he’s conscious of that. He understands what he has to do to be a great player, and he’s committed to doing that.”

Kimber had added weight and appeared poise for a strong season before injuring his shoulder in the weight room and reinjuring it in practice after limited snaps against UAB.

A relative of Kimber posted the news about his surgery on social media on Thursday.

UGA coach Kirby Smart is not expected to address the media again until after the game on Saturday against Vanderbilt in Nashville.

Georgia also lost starting right guard Tate Ratledge for the season to a foot injury suffered in the 10-3 win against Clemson, while projected starting receiver Arik Gilbert has not been with the team for personal reasons.

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