LSU Week: Sunday News and Notes

ATHENS - David Hale's news and notes from Georgia's fall practices.

The Bulldogs were ranked seventh in the first BCS rankings of the season, which were released Sunday, despite being ninth in both the Coaches' and Associated Press polls. Florida and Texas Tech are

ahead of Georgia in both polls but not in the BCS standings.

"I think it's good that we're ranked in the top 10, but as we all know, there's so much more to be played," Georgia head coach Mark Richt said.

Texas tops the BCS standings, followed by Alabama – the only team to beat Georgia this season – Penn State, Oklahoma, USC and Oklahoma State. Texas Tech, Ohio State and Florida round out the top 10.

Six teams from non-BCS conferences are ranked in the top 25.

AFTERNOON ON THE BAYOU

Kickoff for Georgia's game against LSU on Saturday is set for 3:30 after CBS selected the matchup as its game of the week Sunday.

Richt said the mid-afternoon start time suited the team well as it gives the Bulldogs a chance to return home relatively early after the trip.

"Mainly so we could get home at a decent hour and get a good night's sleep, and this gives us a much better chance to do that than those later games," Richt said.

It also allows the Bulldogs to avoid playing a night game in Baton Rouge, La. – a notoriously tough challenge for visiting teams.

LSU's strong defensive front provides an even bigger challenge, however. Richt noted that the Tigers' youngest player on its defensive line is the same age as Georgia's oldest offensive lineman.

"We've already had some chance to watch some film on these guys," Richt said. "They're just big, strong, fast, and they get after you."

INJURY UPDATE

Richt said Georgia came out of its game against Vanderbilt with no major injuries. Linebacker Darryl Gamble left the game twice, but Richt said he was not hurt and would be able to play this week.

Georgia could get several other key players back for the LSU game, too.

Linebacker Dannell Ellerbe has missed the past two games with a knee injury, and Richt said the team was hopeful the senior could return to practice this week.

"We expect Ellerbe to be ready to play, but we've never seen him yet be able to move great from side to side (since the injury)," Richt said. "I guess until we really see him move, we can't say for certain. But everybody's been anticipating that this would be the week."

Wide receiver Kris Durham has not been active the past two weeks while battling an ankle injury, but Richt said Durham was about 90 percent Sunday and should play against LSU.

Tight end Tripp Chandler could play this week as well after injuring his shoulder last month against Alabama.

"We're going to allow him to do scout work against our scouts," Richt said. "I doubt he'll do anything full speed in a real competitive situation against our defense, but we feel like he's got a good chance."

Defensive tackle Kade Weston sat out against Vanderbilt nursing a knee injury, but Richt said Weston would have been able to play if needed.

"He was ready to go, but we thought if we could give him a little bit of a rest we were going to do that, and it worked out that way," Richt said. "But we do expect him to play this game."


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