What We Are Hearing

ATHENS - It was one of the first real workouts of the season - a February seven-on-seven that turned out to be a, well, a bit of a mess.

That might be the nice way of putting it. 

“It was a shit show,” observed one participant. 

Why?

Jacob Eason is in his first weeks of college football. Brice Ramsey is on his third offensive coordinator in as many years. Greyson Lambert is on his third head coach in as many years. 

Not exactly the consistency D.J. Shockley and Aaron Murray enjoyed. But, needless to say, this is a different time. One notable change on the offensive side of the ball is that Jim Chaney will be using simplified terminology in his offensive system - a major departure from what Brian Schottenheimer employed last season. 

Lambert, who had the benefit of using much of the same terminology that Schottenheimer used during his tenure at Virginia, is essentially starting over in a way he didn’t last August. But, scaled back terminology or not, this is a three-man fight that will likely drag on into the fall. UGA hasn’t had many quarterback battles go into the fall over the last few decades - certainly the program hasn’t had back-to-back years of fall quarterback battles in recent memory. 

Eason is getting used to life in college, and he’s adding weight at a pretty good pace. The coaching staff also wants Ramsey to add mass over the coming months - apparently Chaney and company are not limiting their “bigger is better” mentality exclusively to the offensive line. 

Whoever emerges as the winner of the quarterback fight will need the help of Nick Chubb, who got a lot of publicity over the weekend after ESPN’s presentation of Chubbtown. It must be noted that Loran Smith did an excellent job of reporting about Chubb’s roots years ago, but nothing quite has the megaphone of the self-described “Worldwide Leader in Sports.” 

With that publicity comes the No. 1 question of the offseason: Will Nick Chubb play in 2016, and at what point will he do so?

Great question. No one knows the answer. Sorry. Chubb, of course, is the worker bee (sorry) of all worker bees (sorry again), but the significance of his injury should not be undersold. I, and I am only speaking for myself with no inside knowledge or understanding of the situation beyond what I have seen in person, is that Chubb will play by October for sure - early enough for the game with the Vols? That’s difficult for me to say. I was four feet from Nick on the sideline at that dog track known at the turf at Neyland Stadium. It was painful to watch him suffer like that. That so many UGA players have suffered season-ending injures in Knoxville can’t be considered coincidence. That the Vols’ athletic department is in such massive turmoil right now doesn’t surprise me at all. 

Is drawing a direct line from poor turf conditions to gross negligence when it comes to the welfare of students too much? Nope. But usually when you take care of the little things, and the big things handle themselves. Problems with little things add up to very big things over time - and the Vols are dealing with that public black eye in a major way right now. 

Will it effect recruiting? I think so. What do you think 5-star QB Trevor Lawrence makes of the debacle? The current scandal at UT makes it seem, understandably, like Butch Jones could have the rug pulled out from underneath him at any time. But Jones being in hot water or not - I’m hearing that Lawrence is connecting with Kirby Smart and Jim Cheney in a way that puts the Bulldogs out in front for him right now. And that’s big news.


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