Richt gives Coutu scholarship

ATHENS - When Georgia coach Mark Richt announced Monday evening that he had awarded place-kicker Brandon Coutu a scholarship, it probably came as a surprise to many people in the audience at the Macon Touchdown Club meeting. No one, though, was more surprised than Coutu.

Richt had only informed Brandon Coutu about 30 minutes prior to making his decision public. He told the redshirt sophomore during a phone call that came two days after Coutu missed two key kicks in a 14-10 loss to Florida.

"It was unbelievable, especially coming after a game like that," Coutu said. "It just shows what kind of man he is."

The timing was no coincidence, Richt said. He had decided to award Coutu a scholarship weeks ago but didn't want to tell him while he was on a good roll, for fear he would break Coutu's concentration.

"He said he wanted to wait until I missed a couple," said Coutu, who beat out scholarship kicker Andy Bailey for the job near the end of last season.

Coutu is No. 1 in the SEC in scoring with 9.5 points per game and is No. 1 in field goals with 2.12 per game. His 77.3 percent accuracy rate is the best among league kickers with more than 10 attempts.

"Just being able to support my family a little bit and have a little extra money is going to be nice," he said.

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