Support for All-Time Leading receiver pours in

ATHENS, Ga. — Talk is cheap. A billboard? Not so cheap. A group of Georgia football fans, organized by Tybee Island, Ga., resident <b>Ted Kohn</b>, have put their money behind a month-long surge of support for senior receiver <b>Terrence Edwards</b>.

After Terrence Edwards dropped an open pass late in a Nov. 2 loss to Florida, he came home to Athens to find an anonymous critical phone message. After he spoke of his and his parents' disappointment at the fan's reaction and intrusion into his personal life, Edwards was then uplifted by a surge of support from fans, expressed through cards and e-mails.

The wave of support for Georgia's all-time leading receiver now has stretched to his home in Washington County. A freshly painted Georgia-red billboard has been completed in Sandersville, Ga., which neighbors Edwards' hometown of Tennille.

The sign, which stands near the Wal-Mart in town, reads: "#8 Thanks Terrence for 4 great years. The #1 wide receiver in Georgia history. — The Fans.''

Kohn, a 1987 Georgia graduate, says he attends almost every Georgia game and, when noticing vacant billboards when driving through Sandersville, began planning the tribute to Edwards. Kohn placed messages on Georgia fan-based internet posting boards seeking support for the idea.

"Within an hour and a half, dozens of people had responded with pledges,'' Kohn said. "Two days later, I had checks in the mail.''

Kohn said responses from Georgia fans came from as far away as Tennessee and Florida. The billboard cost $650, and at last count Kohn said he had pledges for more than $1,000.

"I wanted Terrence to understand how much we appreciate him,'' Kohn said, adding he hopes Edwards can forget "the moron who left a message on his answering machine.''

Edwards suffered a separated shoulder in Georgia's win over Ole Miss on Nov. 9. Coach Mark Richt said Tuesday Edwards may return for the Dec. 7 SEC championship game in Atlanta.

Neither Edwards nor receiver Damien Gary, recovering from a leg injury, is expected back for the Nov. 30 home game against Georgia Tech.

* Richt says one game against Auburn is enough: Asked if he has any preference about which SEC West team advances to the conference championship game, Richt said he would rather not have to face a rematch with Auburn.

Georgia trailed Auburn until scoring the game-winning touchdown with 1:25 left in its 24-21 victory.  LSU and Arkansas are the only teams in the SEC West which can control their destiny, but Auburn can advance if it beats Alabama this week and both LSU and Arkansas lose one of their two remaining conference games.

"I've never been too thrilled about playing anybody twice in the same season,'' Richt said. "... I'd just as soon not repeat it if we can help it, but again we're just happy to be in the game.''

LSU would clinch the West Saturday if it beats Ole Miss, Auburn loses to Alabama and Arkansas loses to Mississippi State. Otherwise, the division will be decided on Nov. 29, when LSU plays at Arkansas.

Richt said Georgia graduate assistant coaches would begin breaking down film of LSU and Arkansas. Georgia beat Arkansas in 2001 and 2000 but has not played LSU since 1999.

* Plans for Shockley: Richt admitted the two-quarterback system "has not been a rotation'' as starter David Greene has seen almost all the snaps the last two games.  

Richt was reluctant to pull Greene out of the game after the sophomore led Georgia to touchdowns in each of the first two second-half possessions against Auburn. Shockley played one first-half possession and alternated with Greene on another series of plays.

"I'm not going to predict how much Shockley will play against Tech, but he will play,'' Richt said.

There are concerns a cutback in playing time will lead Shockley, a redshirt freshman, to consider a transfer rather than face two more years playing behind Greene.

Richt added "I'm concerned about (Shockley's confidence)'' but said "he's been nothing but outstanding in his work ethic and attitude. I can't ask for any more than he has given us.''

Richt said Shockley "didn't mope'' after the Auburn game. "He celebrated with his teammates,'' Richt said.  


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