I gave a cursory breakdown of the Georgia Bulldogs a while back while proclaiming them the team that scares me most on our schedule. Despite the loss of Paul Oliver in the secondary, I still stand by my assertion that this is a talented team that has all the tools it needs to make it to Atlanta at the end of the season.
|3rd Down Conversions||8th|
|Red Zone Offense||4th|
QB Matt Stafford
FB Brannan Southerland
Dropped passes plagued the 'Dawgs last season, as go to receiver Mohamed Massaquoi suffered a sophomore slump, and the rest of the WRs and TEs underperformed in spectacular fashion. This unit should return to form this year as four of the five top pass catchers return. Leading them is Massaquoi, who caught 30 for 366 yds and 2 TDs last season. He's been moved inside to flanker, while surrounding him are AJ Bryant, a returning starter who caught 14 for 251 yds in 11 games last season, and Sean Bailey, who redshirted last year after a knee injury during '05 bowl practice sidelined him last season. During the '05 season, Bailey was a solid perfomer, catching 2 TDs in the season opener against Boise State, and two more against LSU in the SEC championship game. Also contributing last year were Kenneth Harris, Mikey Henderson, and Kris Durham, while TE Tripp Chandler looks to be more involved in the passing game after catching only two for 37 yards and 1 TD last year.
It isn't all sunshine and roses for the UGA offense this year, though, as the line returns only two starters both of whom played different positions last year. RT Chester Adams started 11 last year while C Fernando Velasco started 13, both at Guard. Surrounding them are a couple of freshman and several JUCO transfers, which might actually work in the 'Dawgs' favor considering O-Line coach Neil Callaway left after accepting the position of Head Coach for the UAB Blazers, and LSU O-Line coach Stacey Searels steps in with fresh minds to mold instead of veterans forced to adapt to new blocking schemes. Of the newcomers, the left side of the line is occupied by true freshman Trinton Sturdivant at LT, and redshirt freshman Chris Davis at LG. Sturdivant enrolled early, and was named the "Biggest Offensive Surprise of the Spring" for his performance during spring camp. Scott Haverkamp joins Adams on the right side of the line at RG. A JUCO transfer from Butler Community College, Haverkamp was rated as the 58th best JUCO player in the country by Rivals. They might be shakey early on (fingers crossed, Bama fans), but this unit should improve over last year's, or at the very least do no worse.