2014 G Day: Notebook

ATHENS – The offensive line intrigue this spring for Georgia had centered around the guard positions.

The starting tackles seemed pretty set.

G-Day offered a surprise with left tackle John Theus playing plenty of right tackle and right tackle Kolton Houston seeing a lot of work at left guard.

The lineup that started and saw extensive action had Mark Beard at left tackle, Houston at left guard, David Andrews at center, Greg Pyke at right guard and Theus at right tackle.

"We've been doing it that way for the last couple of practices," said Beard, who began the spring as the first-team left guard. "I'm just trying to give myself a chance. I like left tackle, but my main goal is to start."

When Theus lined up at left tackle and Houston at right tackle, Brandon Kublanow stepped in at left guard.

"Pyke's been pretty solid at the right guard to this point," coach Mark Richt said. "Kolton looks to be in the top five, Theus is in the top five. The question is going to be is Kublanow going to be the left guard and Theus the left tackle or is Kolton going to go to left guard and Theus go to right (tackle), which puts Mark Beard at the left. We're just going to have to wait and see."

Theus said offensive line coach Will Friend has been "messing with" different combinations trying to find the best five together.

"He said I'm going to have to be ready to play right and left during the season," Theus said. "We've still got two more practices. I'm sure he'll play with it more then and then in the fall when new guys are in."

Richt said Georgia has six to nine offensive linemen who could play. Watts Dantzler, who missed time with a concussion this spring, is a top reserve.

Defense draws plenty of flags

G-Day was flag day when it came to the Georgia defense.

There were a total of 10 for 71 on the Black team, which included the starting defense.

Nose guard Mike Thornton, on the Red team, was called for an unsportsmanlike conduct for throwing the ball in the air after a fumble recovery.

"I didn't like that much, I thought it was stupid and I told him so," Richt said.

Defensive end Sterling Bailey also got an unsportsmanlike call after two straight pass interference penalties were called on Damian Swann.

"Bailey just took the blame," outside linebacker Leonard Floyd said. "It was on another player I think. Everybody was pretty mad about the pass interference."

Shaq Wiggins was flagged three times for pass interferences and Sheldon Dawson one.

"A couple of them were some blown calls, but that's not my place to criticize anyone," Swann said.

Richt chalked up the pass interference calls to defenders making a play on a ball in the air.

"It's a judgment call," Richt said. "You can't just concede it."

Richt said he thought Reggie Davis was pushing off on one call on Wiggins.

Matthews needs to take ‘ownership' with hamstring injury

Two players listed as starters for the Black team defense were out with injuries.

Star/nickel back J.J. Green (ankle) and safety Tray Matthews (hamstring) were scratched before the game.

Matthews missed time as a freshman due to hamstring issues and Richt said he pulled a hamstring again.

"He's had some chronic hamstring issues, which we probably need to reevaluate what we're doing with him and how we train," Richt said. "There's something going on. He's probably got to take some more ownership too. …He might need to spend a little more time with flexibility stuff in the offseason than maybe another guy might have to."

Matthews indicated an injury wasn't a big issue when asked why he didn't play Saturday.

"Coach (Jeremy) Pruitt wanted me for the regular season," he said.

Matthews was one of three defensive players who were arrested prior to spring practice on theft by deception charges for "double-dipping" university issued tuition checks.

Defensive linemen Jonathan Taylor (3 tackles) and James DeLoach (1 tackle) both started for the Black team.

The other player arrested, receiver Uriah LeMay, caught a 41-yard touchdown pass for the Black team.

Richt has not announced any suspensions yet for the players.

This and that

Redshirt sophomore walk-on Clay Johnson had five catches for 75 yards to lead the Black team. "I was just trying to play football," said the Calhoun High product. "I was just out there trying to get open and hoping the ball would come my way and knew I had to make the catch when it came."

Tight end Jordan Davis, who has been sidelined with a sprained knee, didn't play.

NFL cornerback Tim Jennings of the Chicago Bears was among former players back at their old stomping grounds for G-Day. Jennings and Georgia men's basketball coach Mark Fox were dressed in shorts on the sunny day.

Former Georgia volleyball and basketball player Maria Taylor has reached a multi-year deal with the SEC Network to serve as a studio host, football sideline reporters and volleyball and women's basketball analyst.


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