Posted: 12:55 pm Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Behold the Georgia Bulldogs’ defensive depth chart 

By Chip Towers

2014mediaguide

Georgia’s 2014 football media guide has been released. Can you identify each of the individuals represented on the cover?

ATHENS – Georgia has a defensive depth chart.

If that doesn’t seem like news to you, you haven’t been paying attention to the Bulldogs since Jeremy Pruitt took over as defensive coordinator. He left spring practice saying he wouldn’t have a depth chart until Georgia opens the season against Clemson on Aug. 30 and maybe not then. His point: The competition for playing time is ongoing.

So why now? Well, the bottom line is the Bulldogs simply had to have a depth chart to include in their 2014 media guide, which came out this week. I picked up my copy on Thursday.

Interesting cover, by the way, in that among the six individuals featured on the front is Georgia basketball coach Mark Fox. It’s that shot of him dressed up as a member of the ‘Spike Squad” for last year’s game against LSU. He shares the cover with Ramik Wilson, Todd Gurley, Marshall Morgan, Chris Conley and Michael Bennett. They’ll likely have more of an impact on the upcoming season.

But back to that depth chart. First of all, as Pruitt made so clear at the end of spring practice and in speaking engagements over the summer, there’s no reason to put much stock in the starters listed there or the order of their backups. All that will be determined in the 28 practice opportunities that begin on Aug. 1. But for the sake of conversation and a leaping-off point for SEC Football Media Day, which begin Monday, let’s talk about some surprises and possible revelations therein.

  • J.J. Green is listed as the starter at strong safety. This is interesting on a couple of fronts. We all know he won the job going away at the “star,” or nickelback, position. But here he’s listed as one of the two starting safeties in Georgia’s base package of four defensive backs. It was generally assumed that Georgia’s safeties going into the first game would be senior Corey Moore and sophomore Quincy Mauger. Both logged a lot of time in the back third last season. But here at least Mauger is listed as the backup  to Moore at free safety. And Mauger is bracketed with an “or” at second-team with senior walk-on Lucas Redd. Converted wideout Tramel Terry is listed as the backup to Green at strong safety, so it would follow that he’d move up to first team when the Bulldogs went to a nickel and Green moved to star. This depth chart does not reflect the off-season change of Reggie Wilkerson from corner to safety, so unclear here where he stands.
  • Redshirt freshman Aaron Davis is still listed as the starter at boundary corner, ahead of junior Sheldon Dawson. Of course, none of the incoming signees are represented on the depth chart, and Shattle Fenteng and Malkom Parrish, among others, will certainly be involved in the competition there. Junior Devin Bowman is listed as the backup to Damian Swann at the other cornerback position.
  • The starting defensive line is reflected as Sterling Bailey and James DeLoach at the tackles and Mike Thornton as the noseguard. Probably the biggest surprise up front is that Ray Drew and Toby Johnson are listed third team, though that is where they were working last time we checked during spring ball. I don’t see any of that as terribly significant, however, as Pruitt and line coach Tracy Rocker have talked about rotating liberally up front. With John Atkins, Chris Mayes, Jon Taylor and Josh Dawson to also utilize, that’s understandable.
  • The starting punter’s job is listed as an either/or between junior Colin Barber and senior Adam Erickson. Nathan Theus is the No. 1 snapper ahead of Trent Frix.
  • Offensively, there are probably more asterisks than people would like to see. Seven players have asterisks next to their names, and they signify “recovering from injuries.” As a result, walkon Kyle Karempelis is listed as third-team tailback behind Todd Gurley and Brendan Douglas. Keith Marshall (knee) and A.J. Turman (ankle) are fifth and sixth, respectively, on the tailback totem poll. But Marshall has reiterated this summer that he is recovered and will be ready to fully participate in camp.
  • Likewise, Malcolm Mitchell is behind Chris Conley and Kenneth Towns at the “Y” receiver, Justin Scott-Wesley is third team at the “X,” and Jay Rome is listed fourth at the “H” position (note, not tight end) behind Quayvon Hicks and two walkons.
  • Interesting that junior John Theus is listed as the starter at both left AND right tackle. Each distinction is followed by an “OR,” with Mark Beard as the next guy on the left side and Kolton Houston on the right. But Houston is also listed as the starter at left tackle, without an “OR” qualifier. He’s ahead of Brandon Kublanow, who many have predicted as the starter there. Sophomore Greg Pyke is the starter at right guard.
  • Sophomore Faton Bauta and freshman Brice Ramsey and bracketed as the No. 2 quarterback behind Hutson Mason. So that will a competition to keep an eye on. One of the most overlooked factors about Aaron Murray as Georgia’s four-year starter at quarterback was his ability to stay in games. Mason will do well to display similar durability.

OK, that’s just a few quick thoughts. Like I said, these preseason depth charts serve many purposes, not the least of which could be to provide motivation for the players listed on them. Certainly the one that comes out on the Tuesday prior to the opener against Clemson will look markedly different than this one.

Here’s the defensive depth chart as it appears in the 2014 media guide. Take it for what it’s worth:

DT

Deloach
Atkins
Johnson

NG

Thornton
Mayes
Taylor

DT

Bailey
Dawson
Drew

SAM

Floyd
McGee
Long

JACK

Jenkins
Bellamy
O’Neal

MIKE

Wilson
Carter
Rankin
Underwood

WILL

Herrera
Kimbrough
Vavlas
McDonald

BCB

Davis
Dawson
Wilkerson
Askew

SCB

Swann
Bowman
Johnson

SS

Green
Terry
Gillespie
Davis

FS

Moore
Mauger OR
Redd
Guinn
Jones
Nelson

 

153 comments
LaDodger48
LaDodger48

Love JJ.... but he is not an SEC safety. Ray Drew will be starting!

FireSomebody
FireSomebody

Johnathan Taylor needs to step it up.  By far the most talented NG on that list.  I wonder if "poor decisions" are the only reason behind his being #3 on the depth chart.



keendaddy
keendaddy

RockyTopp,

Great pickup for Tennessee! Huge kid with great bloodlines. Congrats...

OriginalATLien
OriginalATLien

This just in from SI.Com's Andy Staples, UGA has the best uniforms in college football.

2. Michigan

3. USC

4. Penn St

5. Texas

Isn't he a Tennessee grad?

Hangonsloopy
Hangonsloopy

tampa,


How hot is the seat for Muschamp anyway?

Hangonsloopy
Hangonsloopy

I wonder if Pruit's head is predisposed to explode on the sidelines like Grantham's and Muschamp's? 

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

@thebucket Let's hope they can get there grades straightened out and get in school somewhere.

TampGator1
TampGator1

@OriginalATLien 


Does that guarantee Georgia the national title, then?  Everyone will just give up when they see the red and black and silver thing come on the field. Like space aliens coming to take over college football dominance from Crimson Red. 

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

@OriginalATLien Yea red, that's unusual, I can't get excited about a guy who puts Penn St. No. 4

DawginCO
DawginCO

@OriginalATLien  I have thought so for years.  They are classy, and the colors are bold and distinct.  I look forward to getting the true silver britches back.  That will be icing on the cake.  It doesn't hurt that red is my favorite color and that red, black and silver are my favorite color combination.  Not sure I agree with the other picks though. 

TampGator1
TampGator1

@Hangonsloopy 


Not very right now.  5 or 6 loses and it will be scalding hot.  But I don't think that is going to happen this year.  Perfect injury storms don't generally hit two years in a row....and a lot more depth this year as well, including the QB position.  My prediction as this time: Gators win 9 or 10 this year....maybe more.  A lot depends on how the Gators play at Bama. Roper and Summers will and are making a difference on the offensive side of the ball.  The defensive side has not been an issue and will not be this year either.  Georgia has a few questions on defense.  Florida has a few on offense.   Both answer those questions in positive manners and JAX is going to be a big, big game this year.       

thebucket
thebucket

@Hangonsloopy  Why do you care so much? You're a Buckeye troll. Hopefully Chip will ban you again soon.

TampGator1
TampGator1

@Hangonsloopy 


At least they are not quitting because of acid reflux disease on the sidelines for personal reasons.....and lying about it. 

DawgWhisperer
DawgWhisperer

You mean like Woody.... hang on slappy, GT is in for another long season with the annual tradition of losing to Richt and company again.

thebucket
thebucket

@gtcaryd @thebucket  I agree, but losing 8 out of 21 signees is the kind of stuff that can kill your depth. Trust me, I know. UGA played Bama in 2012 with like 68 scholarship players.

DawginCO
DawginCO

@SinceVince   Rest assured, we won't see those again.  They may try another change up in a couple of years but that failure will not be seen again.

keendaddy
keendaddy

Tamp,

Not everyone is rich enough to own a dresser full of "jorts"...

RED DOG 77
RED DOG 77

@TampGator1 @OriginalATLien  No, but they've got a lot better shot at a title than the lowly Allagators............actually Georgia Southern has a better chance as well.

DawginCO
DawginCO

@TampGator1  Where is the fun in that?  If that were the case it would have happened a long time ago.

DawginCO
DawginCO

@gtcaryd  My Dad used to refer to their uniforms as "the practice uniforms".  As plain as it can possibly get.

DawgGoneIt
DawgGoneIt

@TampGator1 @Hangonsloopy I think Florida loses 5 games this year. Maybe 6. Hell I can think of 4 right off top I think you're going to lose (Alabama, LSU, Georgia, Florida State). That's not mentioning South Carolina, Missouri, and possibly a sneaky dangerous Tennessee team.

DawginCO
DawginCO

@TampGator1  The way it should be.  LSU could be a handful for the Gators as well.  Not to mention the Lamecocks and the Seminoles.  You have 3 warm up games before facing the Tide.  Unfortunately for the Gators, Bama has 3 games to get their QB situation straightened out as well.  That could be a slobberknocker in Bryant-Denny.

Hangonsloopy
Hangonsloopy

@thebucket


Whatever bucket. Go on a dog walk and dream of 1980, Herschel, Lindsey Scott and Barbara Dooley.

Ihateorange
Ihateorange

@TampGator1 @Hangonsloopy  Exactly....  he knew the mess he created was about to come home and he wanted out before it did.

Unfortunately the slimeball UM gave UF a black eye (no I am not throwing stones from a glass house - I remember all too well Jim Harrick doing worse to us - but at least UM got you a title, Harrick not so much).

He is a good fit or Ohio State though - they can hang pictures of him next to Maurice Clarett, Jim Tressell, Woody "I'Il punch a college kid from another school" Hayes, what was his name... woody woodpecker Pryor  among countless others.

TampGator1
TampGator1

@DawgGoneIt 


But that is why they play 12 games each year......to see who wins or loses. 

TampGator1
TampGator1

@DawgGoneIt 


And....I am shocked that you think Florida loses 5 or 6 this year.  I would have thought you would have predicted the Gators to win all their games and roll through the playoffs to the NC.  What's wrong with you?

TampGator1
TampGator1

@DawgGoneIt 


Heck, DawgGoneit.....why not say it is possible that Florida could lose to every team on their schedule since they are so sorry.  Speaking of schedules, Georgia does not have for sure wins over Clemson, South Carolina, Missouri, Auburn or Florida either.  And Tennessee, Vandy, and Kentucky will be challenges.  Even Ga. Tech.  But, for sure, Georgia will roll over Charleston Southern.  Well.....1-11 beats 0-12, doesn't it? 


And Florida has the talent on its roster to beat every team they play this year.  And that is the expectation at Florida.....even if it is not your expectation of the Gators.....surprisingly.   

keendaddy
keendaddy

gtcaryd,

queer~adj... strange, odd...

verb~ to spoil or ruin

What's the problemo?

TampGator1
TampGator1

@gtcaryd 


It can be if your wife finds out about certain things for sure.

keendaddy
keendaddy

I'm sure that most "color-blind" people, are offended by this post! The teams should be forced to wear the same color, so nobody has an advantage because of having the coolest uniform. I think everyone should be required to wear Red/Silver & Black!

TampGator1
TampGator1

@DawgGoneIt


Is "queer" like....1970's..... as in "far out?"  How gay....I mean funny, like the early 1900s.....or LOL....like 2014.  

keendaddy
keendaddy

Wait a doggone minute, I still say "dude"!