Dewberry playing faster than last year

ATHENS – Darius Dewberry has always been fast, but he wasn't quite as fast as he wanted to be last year.

Georgia's sophomore linebacker, a graduate of Peach County High School, played in 10 games and made six tackles as a reserve on the strong side in 2006.

"I hustled to the ball pretty well, but as far as knowing the plays and the knowledge of the defense, I needed a lot of improvement, which I got during the spring," Dewberry said.

That's a good thing because Dewberry is expected to start this year at strongside linebacker, where he's trying to hold off redshirt freshman Akeem Dent. Dewberry, 6-foot-3, 236 pounds, was considered the eighth-best linebacker in the nation when he came out of Hargrave Military Academy, and the biggest reason for that is his speed.

His increased knowledge of Georgia's defensive scheme is allowing him to use that speed to his full advantage this year.

"I'm playing a lot faster than I did last year because I know what's going on," he said. "Everything is moving a lot slower. It was moving kind of fast last year. There's still room for improvement, but I feel a lot more comfortable than I did last year."

There's still work to be done, but Coach Mark Richt has seen the improvement, he said.

"I don't know if he knows everything yet, but I think he'll be able to play fast this year," Richt said.

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