Could King Start?

ATHENS - Caleb King will return from a one-game hiatus this week after missing last week's game against Tennessee with a concussion and a broken jaw


Richt said he was pleased with how King has practiced this week and said there was a chance the sophomore could get the start.

If King does open the game in Georgia's backfield, it would mark the first time this season that someone other than Richard Samuel got the starting nod, but it won't signal any change to the backfield-by-committee approach Georgia has employed during the past four games.

"Caleb will play for sure, but I'm not sure if he'll start the game. Richard will play and Washaun (Ealey) will play, and Carlton (Thomas) might play a little, too. We'll be looking for the hot hand, a hot set of wheels."

That's the approach the Bulldogs have used virtually every week since King returned from a two-week absence caused by a hamstring injury earlier this season. In five of the six games, a different runner has accounted for the team's longest run of the day and four different tailbacks have at least 13 carries this year.

The constant lineup shuffling hasn't proved effective, as Georgia has failed to crack 100 yards on the ground as a team in three games, but Richt said no back has managed to offer enough encouragement for the coaches to settle on one player.

"I think we've probably gone into a couple games thinking, if this guy gets it going, we're going to keep letting him go," Richt said. "But we just haven't felt like we're certain enough going into any game to say we're going to stick with this guy for 20 carries no matter what. We just haven't gotten there."


He was supposed to be the grizzled veteran coming off the bench this season, but Kade Weston has earned the starting nod in each of Georgia's past three games, and Richt said that's all about his performance and not a knock on senior Geno Atkins, who has been relegated to backup duty.

"They're all playing well," Richt said, "but Kade's earned the right to start. You can only start two at a time, but Kade, Jeffrey (Owens) and Geno have all been team captains, so they've all played well enough."

For the season, Weston has four tackles for a loss, 1.5 sacks and 13 quarterback hurries – the second best total on the team behind Atkins. It's a far cry from last season when he finished the year with just three hurries and no sacks.

"Last year he had a knee issue that bothered him the whole year and it kept him from getting in prime condition," Richt said. "He battled away for the team even though he was hurt, and this year he's been healthy, he's been in tremendous condition, and his play has reflected all that hard work."

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