5 Fall Camp Questions: Will the OL hold up?

ATHENS – In a week-long series Dean Legge takes a look at the top five questions going into fall camp. Today: How will Georgia's offensive line hold up?

This may be the question of the year. Just how well will this patchwork line, as it was this spring, hold up in the rigors of SEC play? Can this group of three newcomers and two veterans gel in time with their brand new coach? Will the switch in offensive terminology from tight and split to right and left confuse the linemen?

Take at look at the offensive line's depth chart. What jumps out at you? True freshman Trinton Sturdivant, who is the second-smallest lineman on the team, starting at left tackle is the most impressive/concerning thing out there. Was Sturdivant that much better than junior college transfer Vince Vance this spring? No question. Will he be able to hold Vance off the entire year? He will if he can stay healthy and Vance performs at the level he did this spring, of which he spent most on the sideline hurt.

Chris Davis, a redshirt freshman, starts right along Sturdivant at left guard. That means Georgia will employ, at least at this second, four players on the left side of their offensive line with not one single snap of SEC football on the two-deep. Not what you want. Davis is backed up by Tanner Strickland, who may be headed for a redshirt if Ben Harden impresses at all this fall.

Center is the deepest spot for the Bulldogs with senior Fernando Velasco starting there. Even thought Velasco is a veteran he has limited experience snapping the ball in games. He is backed up by Kevin Perez and Ian Smith.

At right guard, junior college transfer Scott Haverkamp gets the starting nod over still green Josh Davis. Haverkamp will bring much needed power to the left side of the line. He will have to log heavy minutes if the two-deep remains as it is published right now.

Chester Adams has lost weight and played well this spring at right tackle. The coaches don't think he will have a huge problem moving from guard to tackle during play, but he will need to stay healthy as Justin Anderson is still learning the nuances of that position.

Clint Boling, a true freshman, could work at a slew of spots for the Bulldogs. He is a redshirt candidate as he may need one year to get used to playing at his new size. When he does, those close to the program say, look out for him. Ben Harden will be needed on the offensive line this year, and will likely work his way into the rotation on the interior of the line.

How will Georgia's line hold up? Better than it did in 2003 when it was forced to use nearly all newcomers and gave up a slew of sacks. That year, even as poor as the offensive line played part of the season, Georgia ended up as SEC East champs. That's not a crazy scenario this season, either. But superstar-in-the-making Matthew Stafford needs time to deliver the ball.

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