That might not be the case in 2015. For the first time in a long time Georgia’s quarterback spot doesn’t have an obvious starter taking the helm. But that’s just one spot to keep up with this spring. Here’s our simplified list of what you need to watch this spring.
1. Under Center
Ramsey is the favorite for a reason. He was the backup last season and played the entire second half of the Belk Bowl during Georgia’s win over Louisville. He’s the second-best NFL prospect at quarterback (Matthew Stafford) that Georgia has had under center during Mark Richt’s tenure. But during that entire time Mike Bobo was the quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator. Now Bobo is gone and while this job might be Ramsey’s to lose - he’s going to have to beat out Bauta and Park.
Bauta was listed as a a co-backup with Ramsey for much of the 2014 season, but Ramsey was clearly the backup and entered the game after Mason in all of those opportunities. What remains to be seen is if Park can have a good enough spring to jump Bauta to give Ramsey a one-on-one fight for the top quarterback spot.
Brian Schottenheimer, who replaced Bobo in January, will oversee the quarterback competition this spring. His NFL background probably favors Ramsey’s pocket style to the more mobile Parks and Bauta.
Insiders Say: Ramsey is only now hitting his stride; Park did well with the scout team last year, but so did Ramsey in 2013 and every other QB before them.
Legge’s Thoughts: Ramsey. No need to overthink it; kid can throw it… just needs to play. Could be special.
Georgia has had outstanding center play over the last few years - perhaps even longer. The question is if that will continue this fall. Isaiah Wynn and Hunter Long have positioned themselves to start in 2015, but one of the two will have to win the job.
Wynn is better, but has hardly played. Long has been around for some time, but its hard to erase the memory of his struggles in the spotlight against Florida last fall (he’s got a lot of company in that department).
New coach Rob Sale will have to decide what he wants to do at this critical, critical spot on the offensive line. Going with two brand new players in the middle of the offense is going to happen one way or the other.
Insiders Say: Wynn could have a Greg Pyke-type impact during his first real year of playing football at Georgia.
Legge’s Thoughts: Wynn is going to get this job, but that’s a lot of inexperience at quarterback and center. The talent combination of Wynn and Ramsey might be better than Mason and Andrews, but expect mistakes thanks to youth.
Inside linebacker has been a very productive if not spectacular spot for the Bulldogs over the last two seasons. But now Ramik Wilson and Amarlo Herrara have left and taken their production with them. Herrara was at least a part-time starter for four seasons. That’s a lot of experience to replace.
And a logjam of opportunity has arrived in the middle of the defense - and the logs will start to get disjointed this spring. Tim Kimbrough and Reggie Carter have been on campus and under Jeremy Pruitt’s thumb for a season. They will get their crack at things before anyone else.
But Chuks Amaechi and Jake Ganus will have their shot to play (if not start) as well. Ganus transferred in from UAB and was very productive for the now-defunct Blazers. Detric Bing-Dukes will get his first real shot of playing defense this fall after helping out at fullback. Ryne Rankin, who has played well on special teams, might get lost in the shuffle in terms of being a starter.
Roquan Smith won’t be there this spring, but he will almost certainly play a lot of third down plays this fall. He’s the future at middle linebacker, but needs to grow.
Insiders Say: This is one of the spots difficult to figure out; Kimbrough is small, but can tackle. Some think the ILB play will actually improve this fall.
Legge’s Thoughts: I really don’t know what to make of these two positions. Georgia’s defense is pretty good as is, but there is no game changer at inside linebacker right now. These guys just need to be solid; scrape and tackle; turn, run and tackle… repeat.