08 12 2004 Notebook

ATHENS — It was a good day and odd day for Georgia. <p> Good in that nobody was injured. <p> Or suspended.

"You guys gonna ask that every day?" Georgia coach Mark Richt said with a smile.

Odd in that the Bulldogs changed practice from the morning in Athens to afternoon at the Atlanta Falcons practice facility in Flowery Branch to avoid bad weather.

Naturally, the Bulldogs saw no bad weather and pretty much wasted two hours total on the road.

"Sharon called me as we were driving up there," Richt said of Sharon Hudgins, his administrative secretary. "I said, 'Sharon what can I tell these guys as to why we're practicing inside when it's really hot outside and sunny.

"She said, 'Just tell 'em you're checking out indoor facilities."

Of which Georgia doesn't have.

"If we had an indoor facility, we wouldn't have to go through all that rigamarole," Richt said. "We wouldn't have spent half our day" on the road.

But it was a nice change of pace for the players, who otherwise might've tried to get something done in the Ramsey Student Center.

"It's a lot better," said offensive tackle Daniel Inman. "You can actually do stuff. In Ramsey, you really can't. We got a lot done (in Flowery Branch)."

HAMMY-ING IT UP: Defensive backs Tim Jennings and Thomas Brown are sidelined with hamstring pulls.

Jennings will likely be out longer than Brown, who Richt hopes will be back sometime next week.

The Bulldogs have been hammered by hamstrings in recent years and Richt said a little more patience might be employed.

"Hamstrings, you can't really predict 'em," Richt said. "You probably need to wait a week after you think you're ready really."

A HEAD START: The Bulldogs staff has started on the defensive game plan for Georgia Southern and its option offense with one running back and two wingbacks.

"We're already looking at 'em, giving 'em a taste," Richt said, "and the responsibilities they're going to have to take care of."

The season opener is Sept. 4 at 3 p.m. on Fox Sports South.

PUTTIN' ON THE PADS: Georgia will finally suit up in pads Saturday morning for the first of two-a-days.

Naturally, there's some serious anticipation. Richt said there will probably be some tackling, but he's not sure how much.

"Depends on what my nerves are."

Is Richt eager to see anybody in particular after a few days in pads? "You've got Ramarcus Brown, you've got Kelin Johnson, you've got Antonio Sims," he said of three true freshmen defensive backs. "Want to see what they can do. Josh Johnson, Brandon Miller. I'm anxious to see how those linebackers do."

He said it's easier to get an idea about wide receivers, and that Kenneth Harris is "making some strides, still learning.

"And I definitely want to see The Big Cheese, once he gets going," he smiled, about offensive lineman Chester Adams, who practiced Thursday for the first time. "I want to see what The Big Cheese can do."

AROUND THE DOGHOUSE: o Richt said wideout Mario Raley, off shoulder surgery, has come up with some big catches this week.

"Mario made the play of all of camp," he said. "He just laid out and caught a ball, laid out horizontally, landed on the ground, slid about six feet, came up with the ball. Just an unbelievable catch."

Raley, though, is a little banged up after a collision with a defensive back ... Richt said he expects wideout Cedric Haywood of Macon to be ready to play by midseason. He said the sophomore has suffered some setbacks during the summer while he rehabilitates the anterior cruciate ligament he tore a year ago in preseason. ... Tailback Tony Milton is still working to get into playing shape, but his shoulder is fine. "If he's ready to go Sept. 4," Richt said, "it'll be tough for him to not get in the game." ... The Associated Press writers preseason poll comes out Saturday. ...

QUOTABLE: o "At the end of the season last year, he got heavy. The bowl game, he was heavy. It was almost like he went home for Christmas and at the Christmas turkey by himself." Richt on junior defensive tackle Kedric Golston from Sandy Creek, who has reported trimmer and in better shape than the past two years.

Dawg Post Top Stories