published Thursday, September 12th, 2013

Georgia Bulldogs enjoying improvement

Georgia held a second consecutive full-pads practice Wednesday afternoon as the Bulldogs continued to recover from a tough opening stretch entering this weekend's open date.

The Bulldogs are 1-1, having started with a 38-35 loss at Clemson before coming home to top South Carolina 41-30. Georgia was the only team in college football to open with two consecutive top-10 teams.

"There was a lot to be proud of," offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said Wednesday of last week's league triumph. "I was most proud of the improvement between game one and game two."

Georgia is on a program-record run of scoring 28 or more points in eight consecutive games dating back to last year, while this season's youthful defense may have something from which to build after holding the Gamecocks to six second-half points.

"They got some positive energy from that," defensive coordinator Todd Grantham said.

Left tackle Kenarious Gates, who left the South Carolina game late in the third quarter with a sprained knee and sprained ankle, has not practiced this week. Head coach Mark Richt expects Gates to play next Saturday when the Bulldogs host North Texas.

The Mean Green are also 1-1, having defeated Idaho 40-6 and lost to Ohio 27-21.

Georgia will practice again today before taking the weekend off. Assistant coaches will be recruiting Friday, but when Richt was asked on Wednesday's SEC teleconference what he planned to do this weekend, he responded, "as much of nothing as I can."

Preparation for North Texas will start Monday.

Slow starters

Georgia's youthful secondary was expected to be aided by a pair of junior-college transfers who signed in February, but that has not been the case for cornerback Kennar Johnson and safety Shaquille Fluker.

"Both of them had some issues during camp injury-wise and missed some practice, and that really kind of hurt their development at this point," Richt said. "Right this minute, I don't see them jumping in the game any time soon. We're happy with their talent base, but they just kind of got behind the 8-ball with their reps because of some injuries and missed practice time."

Odds and ends

Junior inside linebacker Amarlo Herrera leads the SEC through two games with 24 tackles. ... Junior-college receiver Jonathan Rumph has yet to play due to injury but will be available next week. ... Freshman tailback A.J. Turman has yet to play, but Richt refrained Wednesday from saying that he would redshirt. ... Richt on sophomore tailback Todd Gurley: "The first time we scrimmaged [last year], I knew he'd be pretty darn good."

Contact David Paschall at or 423-757-6524.

about David Paschall...

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 ...

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