ATHENS — Terry Godwin continues to show why Georgia wanted him so badly. He also continues to show why playing a true freshmen receiver occasionally comes with some hazards.
Godwin, one of the jewels of Georgia’s signing class this year, is the team’s second-leading receiver with 10 catches for 106 yards. He’s started three games, and has at least one catch in every game.
The downside? He doesn’t have any touchdowns yet – no Georgia wideout other than Malcolm Mitchell does – and Godwin was at least partially at fault for one of Alabama’s touchdowns last week.
It came on the pick-six that Brice Ramsey threw at the start of the second half, making it 31-3. Godwin was streaking down the middle of the field and didn’t even turn back as Ramsey’s pass sailed towards him, into the hands of Alabama safety Eddie Jackson.
Clearly it wasn’t a wise decision from Ramsey. But Georgia coach Mark Richt hinted several times that the Godwin bore some blame for the play, calling it a “miscommunication,” and offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer basically confirmed that on Tuesday. Schottenheimer said Ramsey “made a really good throw,” while regarding Godwin, “that angle he took, it could’ve been a little bit flatter.”
Of course, there’s a reason Godwin is out there and having balls thrown his way at crucial times. He was a five-star prospect out of Hogansville’s Callaway High School, and when he affirmed his commitment to Georgia on signing day, spurning a late run by Auburn, it was a big win for the Bulldogs.
“Terry’s a terrific young player,” Schottenheimer said. “He’s still growing. He’s learning. He’ll be that much better this week just because of things he’s learned in the first five or six games. We expect him to be a terrific player.”
A couple times last week, Godwin flashed the skill the recruiters saw in him. He made a good sideline catch in the first quarter last Saturday, salvaging a field goal for Georgia after the team had been backed up to third-and-forever. And earlier in the game he leapt to make another catch near the sideline, though it was again short of the first-down marker.
“If you look at it, he’s made some really, really good catches,” Mitchell said.
Four years ago Mitchell was Godwin: A true freshman playing a lot and already taking on a featured role. They’re both receivers that rely on catching and speed; Mitchell, at 6-foot-1, has a couple of inches on Godwin.
“I believe he will be a great player,” Mitchell said. “But it doesn’t matter until others consider him a great player. And that’s when he’ll be great.”