Florida Week: Thursday News and Notes

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


Richt said he expects injured starters Dannell Ellerbe and Tripp Chandler to travel with the team and be ready to play Saturday against Florida.

"We expect Tripp to go, we expect Ellerbe to go," Richt said. "They've been practicing and there's no setbacks."

Bruce Figgins has started the past three games in place of Chandler at tight end, but he has a shoulder injury of his own and has not caught a pass yet this season.

Ellerbe's replacement, however, has been a star for the Georgia defense. Darryl Gamble made 13 tackles last week against LSU and returned two interceptions for touchdowns. Between Gamble's strong play and Ellerbe's injured knee, Richt said he expects there to be a rotation at Mike linebacker.

"The limitation would be the number of plays more than how we use (Ellerbe)," Richt said. "We'll use him the way we've always used him, but will it be the same amount of plays? Probably not because he's coming off the injury and because Darryl has done such a fine job, too."


Two months after tearing his ACL in Georgia's opener, Jeff Owens is finally back on his feet.

Owens ditched his crutches last week and is back to walking under his own power – even if he's still moving a bit gingerly.

"The knee's doing real fine," Owens said. "I'm off the crutches, I'm finally walking, so it's a big step in the rehab. Now I'm trying to get my strength back in my quad and my leg. It's coming along real well."

Owens isn't exactly celebrating his health, and he would definitely rather be on the field this week against Florida, he said. Instead, he'll just be rooting on his teammates in his typical jovial style.

"The first week I missed was the hardest, but I got used to it," Owens said. "Now I'm just a big cheerleader. I need to go get some pom-poms to cheer on my team."


Ever since Gamble was quoted saying Georgia's seniors had something special planned for the Florida game, fans have been abuzz over just what the surprise might be. Georgia's seniors and even Gamble, however, have denied there are any big plans.

Richt was asked Thursday if perhaps another Georgia blackout had been discussed, and he didn't exactly deny it.

"When you get a bunch of seniors in the room back in the fall, all kinds of things got discuss, I'll just say that," Richt said.

That caused another reporter to push a bit harder by asking directly what color uniforms Georgia planned to wear.

"We're going to wear red," Richt said.

But did that mean just red jerseys or red pants, too? Richt was coy with his response with a sly grin painted across his face.

"We're going to wear red," he said, adding he wanted to add the uniforms to his "no comment" list this week. "Put that in the celebration category."


Richt was asked if he agreed with pundits who thought 100 points could be scored in this week's Georgia-Florida game, and his answer was pretty revealing.

"Just one team," he said, "or both?"

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