ATHENS — Georgia’s Mekhi Mews showed a national television audience he has the skills to slip through elite Georgia defenders with the ball in his hands last Saturday.

The player new offensive coordinator Mike Bobo refers to as “Waffle House” — because he’s always open — was the breakout star of the annual G-Day Game.

Mews’ hard work and determination these past two seasons on the UGA scout team culminated with a G-Day game-high 91 yards on four catches along with an explosive 99-yard kick return that was called back.

“I felt like this was an important game for me,” Mews told SEC all-time leading passer Aaron Murray in a Players’ Lounge interview. “I feel like I haven’t had much opportunities in games, so I took this game very seriously. Once the game started it felt natural.”

Georgia coach Kirby Smart sounded like he expected Mews to have a big day, there had been whispers he would be getting an opportunity to shine before the game.

“Mews does that every day,” Smart said after the G-Day Game last Saturday. " He’s a guy that last year kept getting really close to being able to play and help us. He was on scout team, so I had seen him make plays on scout team. We put him in a couple of guys as the returner. Very sure handed, makes good decisions, you saw today he’s got some return ability.

“Exciting, and you get what you get from Mews every day. The guy is a worker, and I thought he made some plays today with his feet and made some really tough catches.”

Mews played in three of Georgia’s 12 regular-season games last season, catching a pass for 6 yards against Samford, and contributing to the win over Georgia Tech with a 3-yard catch and 21-yard punt return.

The performance was five years in the making for the preferred walk-on and honors graduate from Central Gwinnett High School.

Mews told SEC all-time leading passer and former Georgia Great Aaron Murray during a Players’ Lounge podcast that he was limited to just five games his sophomore and junior seasons of high school on account of hamstring and collarbone injuries.

The injuries and lack of exposure kept Mews — listed at just 5-foot-8 and 170 pounds —off the recruiting radar.

Mews flashed his senior season with 1,100 yards receiving amid the global pandemic, drawing some mid-major offers.

“Most of them got taken away because they had guys coming back because of COVID,” Mews said, “So I was pretty much left with nothing.”

Georgia provided an attractive walk-on opportunity, and it appears Mews could be ready to provide the Bulldogs with another explosive contributor on offense.

“This will be my third season coming up, (so) I feel like I’m diverse and I’m understanding why things are happening now,” Mews said. “I’m knowing other people’s routes and knowing what the running backs are doing in protection.

“I feel like I’m comfortable now and I feel like I could change different positions and help the team.”

Brock Bowers, the most sure-fire future Hall of Famer of the Kirby Smart era, sounds ready to see Mews on the field with him.

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“He’s just a baller,” Bowers said. “He’s not the most talkative dude, but he shows up ready to work every day and everyone respects the hell out of him because he shows up every day and produces.”