The injuries to Musa Smith and Fred Gibson are a painful reminder that depth might be the most important ingredient to a championship football team. It is not yet determined if Georgia has that special ingredient in the cupboard as they try to cook up a win Lexington this weekend.
While many feel that Gibson's injury is less significant considering the stable of wide receivers that Georgia has, that same crowd of reporters and fans should remember the plays that Gibson has made this season, in particular on special teams. With those plays in mind, along with his deep threat potential on any play, I don't think that the jury would find that Gibson's injures are much less disappointing or less noteworthy than Smith's when comparing the two.
But while many are slighting the significance of Gibson's injury, they are totally correct when it comes to the strain that Smith's injury could put on this team.
Georgia just does not have a back up that is near as capable as Smith is. He gives Georgia a 3-down back. He can catch the ball, he can run, and he has been pass protecting better this season. When Smith is in the game, opponents have to honor everything that he brings to the table.
Can any other back do that for Georgia?
"I feel pretty good about him, well just have to wait and see."
That was a resounding, "I have no clue what Tony Milton will do on Saturday," from the Georgia head coach. Richt did say, however that Milton is the number one running back heading into the all-important game with Kentucky.
Tyson Browning is also a candidate to get some carries against the Cats. But, like Milton, Richt has a concern about Browning as well.
"He's had trouble hanging onto the ball," said Richt, noting that Browning has looked good with the ball in his hands, but has had the ball leave his hands far too many times for Richt to be confident in him.
And the third option for the Dawgs this weekend is Ronnie Powell. Powell ran the ball surprisingly well last spring in the annual G-Day game. However, Richt has reservations regarding Powell and his responsibility to pass protect.
"Ronnie ran the ball well last spring, we are just concerned with his pass protection, but I think that he has made some improvement."
So there it is. You knew that at some point in this season this team was going to be tested. If Georgia can survive the Kentucky game, they will be in great shape for the remainder of the season. But if the Dawgs falter, more pressure will be put on Smith and Gibson to come back and save the season for the Dawgs.
One suggestion: David Pollack and the Georgia defense might want to wear their shoulder pads a size or two smaller this weekend, because the weight on their shoulders just got that much heavier as a result of the injuries.Dean Legge cabe reached here: firstname.lastname@example.org