ATHENS — They call it “de-recruiting” when the object of verbal scorn is a highly-touted freshman. When they’re sophomores, then it may just be a reminder that they haven’t done anything yet.
Trent Thompson absorbed some very loud words, some of them printable, from defensive line coach Tracy Rocker early in Tuesday’s Georgia spring practice. Rocker wasn’t happy with his group in general during the media viewing period, but appeared to reserve the heaviest criticism for Thompson and junior John Atkins, the team’s top two returning defensive linemen.
First Rocker sent the group off, saying a string of words that cannot be quoted here. When they returned, Rocker looked in the direction of Thompson, who was squirting water on himself. It was one of the hotter days of spring practices so far.
“Stick your finger down your throat so you can throw up,” Rocker shouted over to Thompson, who leaned over but did not do so, thankfully for those observing the scene.
When Thompson and Atkins made their way over and the drill was set to resume, Rocker shouted to nobody in particular: “What’s the baby gonna do?”
Thompson, a five-star recruit last year, is expected to be a starter this year and is a candidate for a breakout season.
A few more observations from the media viewing period of Tuesday’s practice.
- Rocker couldn’t shout at sophomore defensive lineman Daquan Hawkins because he wasn’t at practice. Head coach Kirby Smart should have an update later in the evening.
- The pecking order at quarterback, at least during early drills, was the same as it’s been all spring: Greyson Lambert, followed by Brice Ramsey and then Jacob Eason.
- Status quo for Nick Chubb, still carrying the ball in the “play polish” drill, which entails the tailback going straight ahead.
- A position that isn’t getting much attention is fullback, where for the first time in awhile the team doesn’t have someone recruited to campus on scholarship. Christian Payne, the starter last year when healthy, was actually running second team during those early drills, with Glenn Welch going first team.