Consider the previous two walk-ons who've started at fullback for
Georgia. Both Verron Haynes and J.T. Wall, Jeremy Thomas' predecessors, went
from walk-ons to starting fullbacks for the Bulldogs to current members
of the Steelers.
Thomas, a junior from Loganville, chuckled at the scenario.
"Call my mom and tell her that," he said. "She'd love to
hear I was up
there. It sounds good. We'll see."
Thomas still has a long way to go, but took a step in the right
direction with his finest game of the season in Georgia's 34-17 victory
against Georgia Tech on Saturday.
With the Bulldogs using the screen against the charging Jackets'
defense, Thomas became an effective weapon for quarterback David Greene,
finishing the game with 51 yards receiving on a team-best five catches.
He also ran three times for 14 yards and a touchdown.
"(Georgia coach Mark Richt) told me the fullback could end up being
for us (against Tech)," Thomas said. "I liked it so much I hope we do
If other defenses use similar schemes to those of the Jackets, Richt
"I'm proud of the way Jeremy Thomas played," Richt said.
"He had some
good catches and outstanding blocking all day."
Richt said the passes to Thomas were less screen passes and more
openings in the flat.
"We thought we could slip our fullback into the flat," Richt
thought we'd have a chance to hit the fullback or the tight end. We were
able to hit him four times there, five with the one he dropped. It's a
fairly high percentage play. We were able to work it a few times today."
Said Thomas: "Usually, I'm in there as a blocker. But this week,
were some things (Tech) did defensively. We saw there was no one
covering the fullback."
Even when there was, Thomas was still effective. Thomas scored on a
1-yard plunge with 10:46 left in the third quarter to extend Georgia's
lead to 27-3.
The 5-foot-11, 238-pound Thomas transferred to Georgia from the Air Force Academy. He played for the Falcons' junior varsity squad and made
the Dean's List there before deciding to transfer.
"It wasn't what I wanted to do," Thomas said of the military
commitment. "I didn't have a lot of offers out of high school. ... It
was cold out there, and there were not a whole lot of girls. It was kind
of rough with doing the discipline and hard work. It's not like I don't
want to do those things, but with the military, it has to be something
you really want to do, and I really didn't want to do it."
Thomas didn't have it easy when he first came to Georgia.
"The walk-on route is pretty tough," he said. "You have to
do the stuff
that no one wants to do, like practice with the scout team. But thank
goodness it worked out."
Thomas was able to learn from both Haynes and especially Wall, his
roommate last season.
"I was a little bit closer to J.T.," Thomas said. "He
taught me a lot.
One of the things I picked up from him was how to be hard-nosed."
That's paid off this season.
Thomas started early in the season before being sidelined by a
concussion. Since returning, he's had an impact as a blocker both in
Georgia's passing scheme and leading for the Dogs' collection of
"He's really played great all season long," Greene said.
"He's done a
great job blocking. (Against Tech) we were able to fake the run, dump it
over the linebacker's head and get it to him."
Thomas won't complain if the coaching staff continues to look his way.
"(Richt) has always got a new wrinkle or two," he said.
"Hey, I just
work here. Whatever they put in, I'm going to do."
Walk-on in a starring role
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