ATHENS, Ga. — After missing the first four games this season due to suspension, Georgia junior inside linebacker Alec Ogletree returned Saturday and played like someone making up for lost time.
The 6-foot-3, 232-pounder had a career-high 14 tackles in Georgia's 51-44 victory, which is the highest total by a Bulldogs player this season. And early in the second quarter, Ogletree tipped a Tyler Bray pass that resulted in a Damian Swann interception.
"I've been practicing that way, and I just wanted to come out in a game and do the same thing," Ogletree said.
Saturday was the fourth career game in which Ogletree had at least 10 tackles.
"I think he got better as the game went along," defensive coordinator Todd Grantham said, "but he'll be the first to tell you that he's got to continue to work and develop."
Senior safety Bacarri Rambo also returned from a four-game suspension and tallied nine stops.
Bulldogs All-America outside linebacker Jarvis Jones had eight tackles and shared a tackle for loss, but Tennessee's offensive line prevented him from compiling any sacks. Georgia never got to Bray.
"They did a great job of slotting their personnel to me," Jones said. "They definitely challenged me. They're big and heavy with strong hands and strong arms, and they kept their quarterback from getting pressured."
Tennessee's offense racked up 281 passing yards and 197 rushing yards, confirming to Grantham that Derek Dooley's third Volunteers team is his best.
"I think Derek is an excellent coach," Grantham said. "He's a guy who, given the opportunity, will turn that thing around. If you compare the players they have there now to before, it's really night and day. I think he has cleaned up a lot that was left over.
"They've got some skill guys who are going to play in the [National Football] league, a tight end that can play in the league and a quarterback who will play in the league. They've got NFL players, and if people would just stick with them, they will get it turned."
Odds and ends
The Bulldogs are plus-1 in turnovers for the season, but they were minus-2 Saturday after the first half. ... Georgia opened the game with its longest scoring drive this season in plays (13) and time of possession (6:06) ... Sophomore Malcolm Mitchell started on offense for the first time this year and had four catches for 31 yards. ... Marshall Morgan missed the extra point following Georgia's fourth touchdown by hitting the upright for the fourth time this season. ... Before the game, Georgia's home radio booth was named in honor of the late Larry Munson. ... Georgia senior snapper Ty Frix from Calhoun, who graduated in May in biological engineering and now is pursuing his MBA, has been selected as one of 147 candidates for the National Football Foundation national scholar-athlete awards. Another is UT-Chattanooga senior offensive lineman Adam Miller from Northwest Whitfield.
David Paschall is a sports writer for the Times Free Press. He started at the Chattanooga Free Press in 1990 and was part of the Times Free Press when the paper started in 1999. David covers University of Georgia football, as well as SEC football recruiting, SEC basketball, Chattanooga Lookouts baseball and other sports stories. He is a Chattanooga native and graduate of the Baylor School and Auburn University. David has received numerous honors for ...