August 20, 2009: Georgia News and Notes

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

STAYING POSITIVE

Caleb King has made a point of ducking reporters since injuring his hamstring last week, but fellow tailback Carlton Thomas said it's not because King is sulking.

Despite being forced to the sideline in the middle of an intense competition for playing time at tailback, King has kept a positive attitude throughout the process, Thomas said.

"He's been very positive in practice every day," Thomas said. "He's come in in the morning to rehab, just trying to get ready. You never see him down, even though there's probably a time when he's down because he wants to compete. But he's doing everything he can to get back and be ready for Oklahoma State."

While King is missing crucial chances to perform before a final depth chart is set for Georgia's opener, Thomas said he thinks King's attitude on the sideline has impressed coaches as much as anything he could have done on the field.

"It is a big test," Thomas said. "It's a test for anybody who has an injury this close to playing time. It's going to test you mentally, so I feel like if he overcomes it, he's going to have a lot of success."

A HELPING HAND

Adjusting to college football and memorizing a playbook is no easy task, but freshmen receivers Marlon Brown and Rantavious Wooten said the process has been made a lot smoother thanks to the leadership of their quarterback.

"He's been a great help," Brown said of Cox, a fifth-year senior. "He's been going over the playbook with me whenever we're free. It's a blessing because he knows everything."

While Wooten has worked tirelessly to grasp the intricacies of the playbook, he said he has been amazed at Cox's knowledge of the offense – not just at quarterback, but for every position.

"He'll teach me different releases, spinning, all that different kind of stuff," Wooten said. "He's a great teacher, a great leader. He's teaching me all the right things."

For his part, Cox isn't taking much credit for his receivers' development. He said he has made a point of offering tips when needed, but said Michael Moore and A.J. Green have been the real mentors for the young wideouts.

Regardless of who has done the bulk of the teaching, the lessons appear to be paying off, Cox said.

"When you come in as a freshman at any position, you get to a point where your head starts spinning, and then you start coming out of it," Cox said. "I think they're definitely out of that fog now, and they're starting to recognize things quicker and run the right routes. They're coming along nicely."

UNTIMELY VACATION

Georgia president Michael Adams announced the dates for the university's mandatory furlough days Wednesday, and the off time isn't well suited to the football staff, who are being forced to take time off along with faculty and staff.

All university employees will be forced to take off Oct. 30, Nov. 25 and Dec. 24 this year – which would mean Richt and his staff would be on vacation the day before Georgia takes on Florida and three days before the Bulldogs travel to Georgia Tech.

Georgia's sports information department confirmed that the football staff will comply with the furloughs, but there will be an appeals process available to request different days from the ones Adams announced Thursday. The caveat, as reported by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, is that the days must still occur during October and November, meaning coaches must take time away during the height of football season.

While the details are still being ironed out, Boling said he had his doubts that his rather intense line coach, Stacy Searels, would really be able to step away at such a crucial time.

"I wish," Boling said, "but I don't think it's going to happen."


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