ATHENS - If the season started today, senior Thomas Brown would be the starting tailback, running backs coach Tony Ball said Monday.
"If we had to play tomorrow and the game was on the line and we had to throw the ball, I would put Thomas in the game because he's got experience," Ball said after the first of the Bulldogs' two Monday practices. "He understands the defensive scheme, and he understands protection. If it was on the line tomorrow, he'd be the guy, but you've got to get them all to that point."
Georgia opens the season Sept. 1 against Oklahoma State in Sanford Stadium. Brown, who missed the last half of the 2006 season due to a knee injury, is the Bulldogs' leading returning rusher with 1,867 yards on 381 carries in his career.
Ball also indicated that true freshman Caleb King would have to insert himself deep into the depth chart to play this year.
"We're not going to play him if he's not going to get enough (carries)," Ball said. "We wouldn't do that."
King is fourth in line behind Brown, senior Kregg Lumpkin and redshirt freshman Knowshon Moreno.