Smart on Tucker’s gameday role and location

Mel Tucker at Georgia's spring practice.

SAVANNAH — Kirby Smart and Mel Tucker will have the same arrangement that Smart and his former boss had at Alabama.

Tucker, as Georgia’s defensive coordinator, will “call the defenses” on game days, as Smart put it on Monday. That’s the way it went the past nine years for Smart at Alabama, where he was defensive coordinator for Nick Saban, whose background was also in coaching defenses.

“I’ll be more involved with the defense than with the offense,” Smart said. “But certainly Mel has called (the defensive schemes) a long time in the NFL, and that’s the plan going forward.”

Tucker was defensive coordinator for three different NFL teams before coming back to the college level last year as Alabama’s secondary coach.

Smart said not calling the defense won’t be an adjustment for him.

“It’s a new experience for me to be a head coach. So I certainly don’t need the burden of calling the defenses while I’m trying to oversee the whole entire thing,” Smart said.

Tucker is also expected to be on the field during games. As for offensive coordinator Jim Chaney, Smart said the coaches haven’t discussed that yet, but added that Chaney would also probably be on the field.

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