Ward or Figgins to start at TE for Dawgs

ATHENS – Freshmen tight ends NaDerris Ward and Bruce Figgins will be the top two tight ends when Georgia plays Oklahoma State on Saturday, Coach Mark Richt said.

The Bulldogs have to find a replacement for regular starter Tripp Chandler, who is suspended for that game. Ward and Figgins have been more consistent than senior Coleman Watson, Richt said.

"They two young guys are still learning," Richt said, "but they'll do some things that make you know that they'll be pretty special one day."

Figgins was considered the No. 22 tight end in the country by Scout.com last year, when he played for Shaw High School. Richt had never seen Figgins in person until he reported to campus, and he was immediately impressed by the 264-pounder.

"When I saw him here on campus I said, ‘This guy is a better looking guy than I thought,'" Richt said. "He looked ready physically when camp began, and he's learning. He's a very good blocker. He was a great blocker in high school, and he's getting good at the college level."

Figgins thinks he has a chance to start, he said.

"When I got here, coaches told me to get in the play book and watch film," he said. "I was preparing myself from day one to get ready. I've been working hard every day trying to get better, so I think I'm ready."

Ward was considered the No. 3 tight end in the nation coming out of Oakland, Calif., two years ago, but he redshirted last year while recovering from a shoulder injury.

"He's really like a true freshman," Richt said.

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