Georgia Bulldogs head coach Kirby Smart has a word with Georgia Bulldogs defensive back Kamari Lassiter (3) during the third quarter of the College Football Playoff Semifinal between the Georgia Bulldogs and the Ohio State Buckeyes at the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl In Atlanta on Saturday, Dec. 31, 2022. (Jason Getz /

Emerging Georgia football leader Kamari Lassiter shares what makes this team tick

ATHENS — Kirby Smart continued the parade of new Georgia football leadership with Kamari Lassiter and Brock Bowers taking the stage on Tuesday.

Lassiter has the look and sound of an emerging star at his cornerback position, while Bowers is a two-time All-American known to lead by example.

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Lassiter’s presentation was revealing, as he spoke with authority and passion about the future of the program and a defensive backs room that’s finally settling down.

Veteran coach Fran Brown has made it to his second season coaching the secondary under Kirby Smart — something the two previous defensive backs failed to do.

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Here are three takes from Lassiter, that provide some insight into what’s going on inside the Georgia football huddles:

Fran is The Man

Brown has been everything advertised, in terms of a big-time hire who can coach up players for the NFL and recruit the most elite to UGA.

“Coming in last year, I had two DBs coaches already, he was my third and it was like here we go again,” Lassiter said. “But he’s come in and treated me and the rest of the guys like family. He really cares about us, he loves us, he’s willing to go the extra mile with us in the film room, getting up early every day to help us with our technique or watching film, or just getting that extra workout.”

Team motivation

Smart, a master motivator, convinced his team last year that no one believed in them after losing 15 players to the NFL, even though they were picked third in the preseason poll.

Smart might thank the CFP for ranking Tennessee No. 1 in the first rankings — the week before the Vols came to Sanford Stadium.

Regardless, this year’s team figures to be preseason No. 1— favored to pull off what would be a historic three-peat.

So, Lassiter was asked, what’s the motivation?

“I think we’re motivated to avoid being complacent, if we stay stagnant, people will catch up to us,” said Lassiter, who has been part of Georgia’s 29-1 run these past two seasons.

" It’s just not wanting to lose at Georgia. We want to win every game. So the will to win is a motivator.”

Eating off the floor

Smart’s latest catchphrase is gaining traction around the clubhouse.

Georgia players might eat steak and lobster in the restaurant within their new $80 million football building and secure NIL deals funding vehicles worth more than $50,000, but there’s a blue-collar mentality on the field.

“Eating off the floor is a mentality that you’re not too big for anything,” Lassiter explained. “You’re not too big to do the little thing right. Those are the things that got you where you are.”

In that vein, Lassiter is taking it upon himself to evolve into a leadership role this season.

“My role this year is to become a better leader, a more vocal guy that leads by example,” Lassiter said. “.We’ve got a lot of midyears this spring, and I’m just trying to bring those guys along.”

The current players who have spoken with the media this spring:

• Ladd McConkey

• Kendall Milton

• Zion Logue

• Sedrick Van Pran

• Javon Bullard

• Brock Bowers

• Kamari Lassiter

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