ATHENS — The current forecast for Jacksonville doesn’t call for rain. But Georgia football coaches aren’t leaving anything to chance.
The quarterbacks and receivers were throwing with wet footballs during Tuesday’s practice, dipping the ball into buckets of water before passes. That’s something the team hasn’t done during a media viewing period since much earlier in the season, and it still didn’t end up raining.
But the Jacksonville area is renowned for quick forecast changes, being so close to the ocean. So offensive coordinator Jim Chaney had the quarterbacks throwing wet passes, even under the blue skies in Athens.
The receivers, meanwhile, were given an extra emphasis on using their eyes. Receivers coach James Coley preached it over and over during the media viewing period:
“Use your eyes as your third hand!”
“Keep your eye on it!”
“Wet ball, all eyes!”
The players appeared to be heading Coley’s words. Senior Javon Wims, who leads the team in catches this year, made a catch and then shouted out as he walked back with the receivers: “Eyes! Eyes! Eyes!”
When sophomore Mecole Hardman hauled in a downfield pass off an out pattern, Coley clapped and gave him a “Good job!”
Jake Fromm, incidentally, threw that downfield out pass, in addition to a few slants.
A few injury updates from Tuesday’s practice:
- Junior receiver Jayson Stanley, who has missed a couple weeks with a lower leg injury, was in uniform but not participating yet in practice. Stanley was working out on the side with head athletic trainer Ron Courson, high-stepping and doing other stretching. While Stanley doesn’t have a catch this season, he has been a valuable blocker and special-teams player.
- Defensive lineman DaQuan Hawkins-Muckle (concussion) has not returned to practice yet.
- Junior defensive back Rashad Roundtree, who has yet to play this season because of several injuries, was again in street clothes and observing drills, including offensive ones. It’s another indication Roundtree isn’t expected back anytime soon.