ATHENS — It happened late enough in the game that few noticed: Brice Ramsey, the highly-touted quarterback who lost the competition for the starting job, punted.
Yes, he punted. And very well.
There was 1:39 left in Georgia’s 52-20 win over South Carolina on Saturday night and the Bulldogs were running out clock. Ramsey was in the game with the second-teamers, and hadn’t thrown a pass. As fourth down arrived, Ramsey was told by the special teams coaches to stay on the field and punt.
“We decided to slip him in there,” coach Mark Richt said. “He’s been a guy we’ve been working in case something ever happened to Collin (Barber). So we got in a situation in the game where we decided, You know what let’s give him a game rep in case somewhere along the way he has to do it.”
Ramsey’s punt went for 42 yards, the best of the night for Georgia. Of course there was only one other: Barber’s only attempt went for 39 yards. Barber’s season average, over 11 punts, is 41.5, so technically Ramsey now leads the team in punting average.
The notion of Ramsey punting has been thrown around before, as he was known as a good punter and kicker for Camden County High School. But it hadn’t been discussed publicly much recently, with most of the attention on how many quarterback snaps Ramsey would get. And by the time Ramsey punted on Saturday night, many fans had already headed for the exits, and media members and team staffers were getting ready for the game to end.
“I don’t know how many people noticed it,” Richt said. “Even some of the coaches didn’t find out until today that he actually punted it.”