08/21/2007 Georgia News and Notes

ATHENS - Josh Kendall's news and notes from Georgia's fall practices.

STILL COMPETING: Dublin native Brian Mimbs, a junior, hasn't given up yet on being the starting punter despite the fact that true freshman Drew Butler currently holds the lead in the competition.

"They still haven't told us anything as far as the final decision,' Mimbs said. "It's still pretty tight. We're both punting pretty well and I think just one (bad) day either way might separate the two of us so I'm trying to eliminate those days."

Regardless of how the punting competition turns out, Mimbs will hold onto his job as holder for place-kicker Brandon Coutu. Mimbs held in two games last year – against Auburn and Georgia Tech – when regular holder Gordon Ely-Kelso took over kicking duties.

"It seems like a lot of people really don't notice the holder unless he messes up a hold," Mimbs said. "It's pretty nerve-wracking, but I've got a couple games under my belt so going into this year I feel pretty confident."

The kickoff job still is undecided between Brandon Coutu and walk-ons Ben Wilson and Bo Stansell.

DWINDLING NUMBERS: The defensive end picture is starting to take shape even as the position loses player after player. Senior Marcus Howard and sophomore Rod Battle will be the starters, and junior Jeremy Lomax probably will be the first end off the bench, Lomax said.

"I feel pretty good," said Lomax, who has totaled six tackles in two years at Georgia. "I feel like I've improved and as long as I feel like I'm improving, I feel good."

Georgia is down to five veteran defensive ends after Kiante Tripp moved to offensive line and Jarius Wynn moved to defensive tackle.

"We're not worried about who we've got or who we're losing," Howard said. "We're just going to play as hard as we can play."

Redshirt freshmen Demarcus Dobbs and Michael Lemon, a Macon native, have looked good this fall, Lomax said.

True freshman Neland Ball is expected to redshirt.

TIGHT END FLUX: When Tripp Chandler returns from suspension, he'll be Georgia's starting tight end. What happens between now and then is anybody's guess.

"It's muddy," Coach Mark Richt said. "To me it's really muddy."

Senior Coleman Watson, redshirt freshman Na Derris Ward and true freshman Bruce Figgins are competing to take Chandler's spot Sept. 1 against Oklahoma State.

"I couldn't tell you who's going to starter (in that game) or how much everybody is going to play," Richt said. "It's still wide open."

LOOK OUT: Matthew Stafford is one of the 35 quarterbacks in the county named Tuesday to the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award Watch List.

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