Receivers start from scratch

ATHENS - Georgia has plenty of receivers this spring. It's just that none of them have done much of anything.

Fred Gibson and Reggie Brown are gone, and they took with them 82 percent of the Bulldogs' wide receivers' catches and 81 percent of their receivers' touchdowns from a year ago.

Georgia has plenty of bodies to fill those holes -- seven receivers are on scholarship -- but none of them have proven they've got the ability to really fill that void yet.

"I'm looking for a couple receivers to step up right now," Coach Mark Richt said. "There's a lot of playing time out there for somebody who really wants it. Of all the positions, that one is the most wide open."

Sean Bailey -- who had 14 catches last year, more than any returning receiver -- has shown the most promise so far, Richt said, but he added, "I don't really see anybody standing out above the rest."

Richt commended Peach County's A.J. Bryant for a terrific catch on Monday, and rising sophomore T.J. Gartrell made a sparkling grab on Thursday, but it's consistency that Richt is looking for and no one has shown it yet.

One surprising name to earn praise this spring is Kenneth Harris, a 6-foot-3, 215-pound freshman who redshirted last year. Harris had a very good offseason and positioned himself for a solid spring, Richt said.

"I plan on coming away, if not with a starting spot, then a whole lot of playing time," Harris said. "I know everything is open. You come out and compete, there's no telling what can happen."

Incoming freshmen Mohamed Massaquoi and Michael Moore also will have a chance to play immediately, Richt said.

The most experienced receiver in the bunch is senior-to-be Bryan McClendon, who has 21 career catches. McClendon knows his seniority isn't going to earn him anything, but he has drawn praise from Richt as the Bulldogs' most physical receiver thus far.

"You have to go out there every day and prove you're ready to play," he said. "I think the position is wide open for anybody who wants to work for it."


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