ATHENS — Welcome to DawgNation’s live coverage of G-Day, the annual UGA football scrimmage. Follow below for updates:
G-Day ends with Georgia defeating Georgia, 34-14. Jacob Eason will be the story of the game … but he’s not the only one. We’ll have updates from Kirby Smart and other players after postgame interviews. Check back throughout the evening for stories and updates.
And now Tae Crowder joins the scoring column. The redshirt sophomore goes up the middle – on what looked a lot like the play Shaquery Wilson scored on the previous drive. That gives the Black team – or the Red team, we’re not really sure – a 34-14 lead.
Brice Ramsey was the quarterback that drive, and had a nice pass down the middle of the field to help set it up.
OK, so Jacob Eason … yeah. He just threw a perfect touch pass that Reggie Davis hauled in for a 37-yard completion. The heart palpations from the crowd could be felt all the way in Washington state.
That set up a 5-yard touchdown run by Shaquery Wilson. And for those actually keeping score at home, the Red team now leads the Black team, 27-14.
By the way, the Red team not going for the two-point conversion is the first serious coaching error of Kirby Smart’s head coaching tenure. (Kidding.)
Jacob Eason re-entered the game and promptly nailed a completion to Riley Ridley on a crossing pattern. The legend continues.
Aaron Davis produces the defensive play of the game, a 98-yard interception return. And it took awhile: Davis picked off a Greyson Lambert pass near the left sideline, then ended up running down the opposite sideline, out-running Lambert himself near midfield.
It looked like receiver Riley Ridley ran the wrong route. It’s still counted against Lambert in the stat book, though.
Shaquery Wilson has indeed played tailback and gotten some carries. He has natural ability, but there are still some hiccups: He and Greyson Lambert just had a miscommunication on a handoff, leading to Lambert having to literally run towards Wilson in the backfield to deliver him the ball. Wilson still managed to go straight ahead and gain a couple yards.
It’ll be interesting to see whether the Wilson experiment at tailback carries into the summer. It’s not clear if there’s an opportunity for him in the backfield, with Nick Chubb on the way back and Elijah Holyfield on the way. And the other sophomore receivers – Michael Chigbu and Jayson Stanley – have looked good today.
Your new quarterback is … Nick Robinson.
The walk-on receives the second series of the second half, with the Black team, after Greyson Lambert opened with the Red team. It’s not clear how much more Jacob Eason will play; while he only played two series in the first half, he did have the most pass attempts (14), and Kirby Smart’s stated goal was to split up the quarterback snaps as much as possible.
Robinson, by the way, finished the drive by hitting fullback Christian Payne for a touchdown. Gotta say, Robinson doesn’t look too bad. He’s a gamer.
Black 13, Red 7
The good news is Georgia achieved its goal of getting 93,000 to the spring game. The bad news was that number was reduced by at least a quarter and maybe more at halftime. A lot of people left their seats not to return. Perhaps they wanted to get to the Diamond Dogs’ 6 p.m. first pitch against South Carolina up at Foley Field.
They all got what they came to see, however, which was Jacob Eason in action at quarterback. And there was a lot to like. The freshman from Lake Stevens, Wash., unofficially had completed 9-of-12 passes at my last counting (still waiting on official stats) and hooked up with fellow freshman Isaac Nauta, a tight end, for a short touchdown with 33 seconds remaining in the half.
Rodrigo Blankenship line drives his third field goal attempt of the game as time expires in the first half. Brice Ramsey got the Black team in position for the try with a long completion to Jayson Stanley.
Rodrigo Blankenship kicks his second field goal of the game, though this one probably should have been worth one point rather than three. It came from 18 yards, or the 8-yard line.
Red 13, Black 0.
The Jacob Eason era officially gets underway. The true freshman quarterback came in to pilot the No. 2 offense of the Red team. Right away, he connected with tailback Brendan Douglas on a nice flair pass to the right flat. But two plays later he wowed the capacity crowd with a perfectly placed pass to fellow freshman Riley Ridley on a deep flag route down the left sideline toward the West end zone. It was a 29-yard gain.
Alas, Eason was “sacked” (no live contact) on a third-down blitz. The Red had to settle for a 40-yard field goal try, which William Ham missed wide right.
— Jeff Sentell (@jeffsentell) April 16, 2016
Ramsey, who flipped from the Red to the Black team, connects with Jayson Stanley on a 39-yard pass to put the Black Team into scoring range. Stanley got behind first-team cornerback Malkom Parrish on the score, and would catch another ball to give his team first-and-goal at the 2. Tae Crowder plunged in from there to give the Black team a 10-0 lead with 10:43 left in the second quarter.
Tae Crowder 2-run (kick), Black 10-0, 10:43 2Q
A bad snap results in William Ham missing a 46-yard field goal attempt for the Red team. So far only Brice Ramsey and Greyson Lambert have played quarterback. The supposed plan is for Jacob Eason to float in between the two teams, so I suspect we’ll see soon.
So the first quarter ends with the Black team leading 3-0. And now the story moves from whether UGA would get to 93,000 to how many will the school have to turn away. Public address announcer Brook Whitmire twice has asked people to please bunch up on the rows so everybody can find a seat. Meanwhile, streams of people are now seen leaving the stadium.
Rodrigo Blankenship made an early case to the primary place-kicker with a 46-yard field goal to give the Black team an early 3-0 lead. The kick capped a seven-play, 44-yard scoring drive led by quarterback Greyson Lambert.
Coach Kirby Smart wasn’t happy with the field goal however. He tried to protest the incomplete call on the previous play that would have resulted in a 29-yard touchdown pass to wideout Michael Chigbu. The side judge ruled it out of bounds but replays on the videoboard sure did look like a touchdown.
The Red team got one first down before having to punt. The No. 2 offensive line looked like LT Kendall Baker, LG Ben Cleveland, C Thomas Swilley, RG Sam Madden and right tackle Aulden Bynum. Linebacker Tim Kimbough had a big hit on tight end Jackson Harris to break up a pass.
Couple of defensive observations: Sophomore Juwuan Briscoe started at the cornerback opposite Malkom Parrish and sophomore Rico McGraw is at the star. Black team has to punt and it was Brice Ramsey. And he boomed on inside the 10. Interestingly, he pinned himself back as he had to quarterback the Red team.
That was William Ham who handled the first kickoff of 2016. The Black team had Sony Michel and Terry Godwin back deep. Godwin brought it back short of the 20 but offense took over at the 30 nonetheless.
Well, the teams have come on the field. The “Black” team, wearing white, which essentially consists of the No. 1 offense, ran in separately from the visitors tunnel, while the defense-led “Red” team came in first through the home team tunnel. PA announcer Brook Whitmire just asked the crowd to please squeeze in closer, so it’s officially a capacity crowd of 93,000.
Greetings from Sanford Stadium and the 58th (or so) annual G-Day spring game. As I type at this moment, the Bulldogs just completed their warmups and cleared the field so that Atlanta rap artist Ludacris can take over. They have a small stage set up in the open area in front of the East End stands. As I understand it, Ludacris has his own space set up in the visitor’s locker room. I wasn’t invited to the pregame party, unfortunately. Crowd seems to be getting into it.
Right now it looks as though Georgia is just a tad short of the stated goal to get 93,000 fans for this game. But I think they might do it. Again, at this moment fans are filing into the upper-tier 600 Level. So if they don’t get it they’re going to come close. And either way it’s a record. Most every is a little over 46,000. They’ve long blown by that.
Meanwhile, the biggest ovations so far have been for Kirby Smart when he entered the stadium from the Dawg Walk and Nick Chubb when he showed up for the pregame stretch fully dressed out. No, he’s not going to play.
More on G-Day from DawgNation:
- Photos: 93K fill Sanford Stadium for G-Day game
- Coaches are much more optimistic about the kicking game
- G-Day marked the first victory for Kirby Smart
- One NFL star says Smart is taking the program to a ‘new level’
- Jacob Eason impressively surpassed his hype
- The biggest highlight of the G-Day game wasn’t on the field
- Watch: Kirby Smart’s press conference after G-Day
- Black beats Red, but there were other winners on Saturday
- Eason was rousing in his debut