Thurman and Brown sit practice out

ATHENS — Georgia expects to know for sure today if it will lose any players for the bowl game due to academics.

Coach Mark Richt is hopefully optimistic, he said, that all the news will be good.

"Every bit of news to this point has been all positive," he said. "There are a couple more things that could come up, but right now, we anticipate everybody being able to play."

The No. 8 Bulldogs (9-2) practiced twice in Monday's frigid temperatures, once in the morning and again in the afternoon. Linebacker Odell Thurman sat out the morning practice with what defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder referred to as "a sick problem." Thurman was resting a staph infection in his leg, one member of the team said. He worked out with the team in the afternoon.

Running back Thomas Brown also missed pratice time Monday due to what Richt described as a very, very minor concussion. He could be back as early as today. The Bulldogs will practice once this morning before breaking for the holidays.

GOOD NEWS: Georgia had a scary moment during the morning practice when freshman walk-on Charles Krauth was injured during a kickoff team drill. After a collision with a teammate, Krauth fell to the ground motionless. He was taken off the field on a backboard and transported by ambulance to St. Mary's Hospital, but he suffered no serious injuries.

He was diagnosed with a concussion and cervical sprain and released. Krauth, a freshman from Marietta, won't practice with the team today but will travel to Tampa for the Jan. 1 Outback Bowl.

"He's going to be fine," Richt said.

OUTBACK VISIT: Two representatives of the Outback Bowl came to Athens on Monday to host the Bulldogs and their coaches for a luncheon at the local Outback Steakhouse. The feast took a little life out of the Bulldogs' afternoon practice, Richt said.

"This afternoon, after a big lunch at Outback, they were a little sluggish early on, but they got it going," he said.

The bowl reps reported that Georgia has been issued 15,000 tickets for the game and Wisconsin has been issued 11,000. The Bulldogs have sold about 13,500 of their tickets, according to ticket manage Tim Cearley. The game remains 4,800 tickets short of a sellout, but officials expect those tickets to be gone by game time.

REPEAT WINNER: David Pollack added another award to his impressive haul on Monday when he was announced as the winner of the 2004 Hendricks Award, which goes to the nation's top defensive end. Pollack is the only winner of the award, which was started in 2003.

THE GOOD OLD DAYS: Senior wide receiver Reggie Brown was asked this week about some of his favorite bowl memories, and the 2000 Oahu Bowl was one of the first to pop into his mind. And not just because the Bulldogs played in Honolulu, Hawaii, in Jim Donnan's final game as head coach.

"We just did whatever we wanted to," Brown said. "The old staff was going out, they didn't care. That's what made it so fun."

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