Were questions answered during Georgia’s first scrimmage? Now that’s a question…
Georgia held its first full scrimmage of the Spring yesterday and either the defense is really good or the offense is really bad (it should be noted that Aaron Murray did not participate as he was at an awards banquet).
I asked a few questions yesterday and here are the answers:
Who steps up at running back? Obviously, I was thinking about this as “who’s going to back up Gurshall?” and as I detailed in the comment section yesterday, the two freshmen were extraordinarily healthy last year. That’s not the norm. Furthermore, over 15% of the carries are now gone due to graduation or transfer. Georgia needs a third (and maybe a fourth) back to emerge. I don’t know that one did. Keith Marshall carried the ball 11 times for 71 yards while Todd Gurley touched the ball just twice for fifteen yards. That doesn’t tell me much. The fact that newcomer J.J. Green got six carried and Brandon Harton got five tells me that they are likely “the guys.” But those two each averaged just 1.0 yards per carry. Kyle Karempelis added three carries for 21 yards. Georgia still needs a defined third back.
Who is the backup? With Murray out, plenty of arms were on display. It got ugly. Passing conditions weren’t great (it was cold, damp and windy) but anytime four QBs combine to go 26 of 54 for 283 yards, 1 TD and 6 INTs, panic tends to set in. That’s a passer rating of 76 and change, and would be Aaron Murray’s third worst game ever (following poor outings against South Carolina in 2012 and LSU in the SEC Championsip in 2011). Hutson Mason seems to be the man based on workload (he had 23 attempts, nobody else had more than 11 and he got the majority of the first-team work), but if he continues to have 14 of 23 for 186 yards, 1 TD and 2 INT days he might leave the door open to be passed. That being said, maybe Georgia’s defense is pretty respectable (I think that is the case) and for a backup against a good first team defense that’s not terrible for a first scrimmage. Interestingly enough Christian LeMay was the only QB to not throw the ball to the wrong team; but that goodwill was negated by his 1 of 11 passing. Parker Welch hit on 50% of his passes but threw a pick, Brice Ramsey hit on 90% of his passes – but three were to the wrong team. In all seriousness: where is Faton Bauta? By all accounts he’s the hardest working guy you’ll ever meet. He was listed as 6-3, 225 coming out of high school and runs a 4.55. He had offers from Bama, Louisville, Miami, West Virginia and others. But he can’t find the field ahead of Christian LeMay’s 9% completion rate and Brice Ramsey’s 3:1 INT:TD ratio? I admittedly am lacking in research on this topic. For all I know he’s hurt and that may be common knowledge, but where is he?
Who puts pressure on the QB? Georgia gots some answers here. T.J. Stripling, Ray Drew and Jordan Jenkins all registered 2 sacks. I think those three guys will have big 2013 seasons. Lucas Red and John Atkins each added one.
Who makes all the tackles? Ramik Wilson stepped up with 7 stops, newcomer Tray Matthews added four. Four other players (Connor Norman, Ray Drew, Josh Harvey Davidson Roger Clemons, Jordan Jenkins) registered three.
Who makes plays? Tray Matthews made some plays and Richt singled out his efforts. Sheldon Dawson picked off two passes – but it sounds like I would have gotten my hands on one if I’d been there.
Can Georgia Kick? The short answer: no. Marshall Morgan was 1 for 3. The long answer: Maybe. Morgan missed a 60 yarder and another that Richt deemed “unrealistic.”
That’s all I got/