Posted: 9:54 am Monday, July 28th, 2014
By Chip Towers
MONDAY MORNING REWIND
1. It’s not going to lessen any of the negative publicity being directed at the Georgia football program at the moment, but redshirt freshman Davin Bellamy has handled his recent arrest for DUI about as well as anyone could ask.
Not long after bonding out of Athens-Clarke County Jail following his early Saturday morning arrest, Bellamy sent out a message on his Twitter account apologizing to his teammates, coaches and fans for his poor judgment and asking for a chance to earn back their trust. Nineteen-year-olds make mistakes all the time, but it seems rare when they own up to them and sincerely ask for forgiveness. So kudos to Bellamy for that.
In the meantime, there is the punitive effect on Bellamy and the football team. According to UGA’s codes of conduct, DUI arrests usually result in a two-game suspension for football players. That means Bellamy is likely out for the Clemson and South Carolina games, arguably the two biggest for the Bulldogs this season.
Bellamy was entering preseason camp as the backup to Jordan Jenkins at the all-important Jack outside linebacker position. So in the immediate at least, that will mean a promotion for sophomore Johnny O’Neal, who was listed third on the largely hypothetical preseason depth chart.
Other options? Georgia, or course, signed 5-star prospect Lorenzo Carter of Norcross and 4-star recruit Keyon Brown of Wauchula, Fla., to play defensive end. And redshirt freshman Shaun McGee could move over from the Sam outside linebacker position. Backup inside linebacker Reggie Carter has also worked some on the edge.
So Georgia does have some depth at linebacker and, of course, the proven Jenkins will likely take almost all the snaps anyway. But coaches have been pleased with the progress of the physically imposing Bellamy, who also manned some special teams positions. The Bulldogs will miss him.
2. Darnell Salomon, the 5-star recruit from Florida who was charged with felony burglary the weekend of UGA’s Dawg Night elite prospect camp, returned to Athens this past Friday to answer the charges.
The 6-foot-2, 185-pound wide receiver drove back to Athens from Miramar, Fla., to be booked in the Athens-Clarke County Jail Friday afternoon. He was incarcerated less than an hour before being released at 12:30 p.m. on a $7,500 bond, according to jail records.
Salomon has proclaimed his innocence and the fact that he returned to answer the charges indicates he intends to fight them.
UGA police identified Salomon as the suspect accused of entering the unlocked suite of two female students in Busbee Hall in the early-morning hours of July 19 and stealing an iPhone5 and a wallet containing cash and credit cards. Salomon was spending the night in the dorm with two Georgia football players.
3. Former Georgia tennis standout John Isner won his second straight BB&T Atlanta Open on Sunday, defeating Dudi Sela 6-3, 6-4 at Atlantic Station.
For top-seeded Isner, it was his ninth career ATP Tour title and his second in 2014 after winning the Heineken Open earlier this year in New Zealand. Following Isner’s three-set victory over Robby Gindpri in the second round on Thursday, he won all three subsequent matches in straight sets.
This marked the fourth time in five years Isner reached the final in Atlanta. He defeated Kevin Anderson in three sets to win last year.
Isner, who entered Sunday’s match ranked 12th in the world, was a four-time All-American at UGA from 2004-07 and led the Bulldogs to a perfect 32-0 record as a senior. He holds the school record for wins in both singles and doubles.
4. It seems just a matter of time before Kendell Williams runs down a world junior record.
Williams, a Georgia true freshman from Marietta, set another meet record on Sunday when she ran 12.89 in the 100-meter hurdles to win the gold medal at the IAAF World Junior Championships in Eugene, Ore. That again brought Williams close to the world record of 12.84 set by Cuba’s Aliuska Lopez in 1987. Williams already set American junior and UGA records with a 12.87 at the USATF Championships in early July.
Williams is also a world-class competitor in the heptathlon and pentathlon. She has won two NCAA titles and one SEC title, set two collegiate records, two American Junior records, one world junior record, an SEC Championships record, two NCAA Championship records and two school records in her first year with the Bulldogs.
Williams enters her sophomore year at UGA this fall. She helped lead the Lady Bulldogs to a tie for third place at the 2014 NCAA Indoor Championships and a fifth-place finish at this year’s national outdoor meet.