Smart says Ledbetter suspension amount will ‘surprise everybody’

Jonathan Ledbetter's return to the field does not have a definite date.

ATHENS — It looks like Jonathan Ledbetter’s suspension will definitely be longer than the required two games. Perhaps much more than just two.

Georgia head coach Kirby Smart continues to decline to say how long the defensive lineman will be suspended after his second alcohol-related arrest this year. But Smart, speaking with ESPN.com on Monday at its “car wash” event in Bristol, had this to say:

“I’m not getting into the number of games, but I think it’ll surprise everybody when they find out how many,” he said.

The DUI arrest last month requires a two-game suspension per athletic policy, while an earlier one-game suspension, which Smart announced following the March arrest for carrying a fake ID and underage drinking, was up in the air after the charges were dismissed.

Smart also confirmed what had been apparent earlier: Ledbetter, a sophomore, was in line to start on the defensive line. Smart said that during a wider-ranging explanation of his worries about the defensive line.

“I’m extremely concerned at defensive line because of the one kid that we had dismissed, Chauncey Rivers, and Ledbetter has got a suspension, so those are two core [players]. I mean Ledbetter’s probably going to be a starter and now he’s out. Rivers is a really good role player, good pass-rusher and he’s gone. We did bring three guys in, but once again, you start counting on freshmen in our league to be starters and it creates problems.”

NextGeorgia preseason depth chart preview: Offensive line
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