Georgia in at #4 and more news

ATHENS -- Monday's release of the Bowl Championship standings did nothing to change Georgia's mind-set heading into the final five games of the regular season.

"We just have to keep preparing each week and hopefully somebody else will fall off," quarterback David Greene said.

As expected, the Bulldogs were ranked No. 4 behind No. 1 Oklahoma, No. 2 Miami and No. 3 Virginia Tech. Just as they are in the Associated Press poll, the Bulldogs are the highest rated one-loss team in the country.

"I think Georgia is the favorite of the one-loss teams," ESPN analyst Kirk Herbstreit said when the BCS was announced. "I don't think there's a game left on their schedule they can't win."

The top two teams in the final BCS poll, which will be released early in December, will play in the Sugar Bowl for the BCS national championship.

"If we're still ranked in the BCS poll a month from now, we'll get excited," Georgia coach Mark Richt said, "but right now we have a long way to go."

Georgia (6-1, 4-1 SEC) plays UAB this weekend. Richt pointed out that even winning the remainder of their games doesn't guarantee the Bulldogs will maintain their BCS positioning because the poll uses strength of schedule factors and computer polls as well as voter-based polling and win-loss record.

"Really all we can do is think about the game ahead," he said.

INJURY UPDATE: Wide receivers Fred Gibson (knee) and Michael Johnson (shoulder) both said they hope to return Saturday against UAB.

"Last week I barely could walk, but this week it's feeling better," Gibson said. "I'm staying confident. I just have to think positive right now. I can't get down."

Johnson said he planned to return to practice Monday night to job and catch a few passes.

"We're going to take our time with this," he said. "I feel pretty good right now."

Linebacker Derrick White, who missed the Vanderbilt game due to a foot injury, walked normally Monday and said he will play against UAB. Defensive lineman Marquis Elmore, who aggravated an ankle injury against Vanderbilt, also said he'll be ready to go.

Running back Tony Milton, who is out of the season due to a leg injury, will have surgery today.

GANT NOT READY: Defensive lineman Ray Gant didn't play in the Vanderbilt game. Following the game, defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder said he thought a hand injury kept Gant out, but line coach Rodney Garner said Monday Gant was healthy enough to play. "He just wasn't ready," Garner said. "He wasn't prepared to play."

SHOCKLEY'S DECISION: Backup quarterback D.J. Shockley said a fear that he would suffer further damage to his right knee convinced him to have season-ending surgery this week. Shockley will have surgery today to repair cartilage damage and will be on crutches for six weeks.

He should be able to start jogging in three months and be fully rehabilitated in six months, he said. He hopes to be ready for spring practice.

"April will be six months," he said. "If my body heals like I hope, I'll be back for spring," he said.

PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Sean Jones' special teams' contributions in Georgia's 27-8 victory over Vanderbilt last week were virtually meaningless, but the did give the SEC enough reason to name him conference special teams player of the week. Jones returned an onside kick 41 yards, setting up Georgia's last touchdown, and then blocked a 34-yard field goal on the game's final play to keep the Commodores in single digits.

Jones' defensive effort was much more impressive on defense, where he recorded a season-high 14 tackles, giving him a team-high 73 for the season. Jones also intercepted his team-high fourth pass.

Dawg Post Top Stories