November 20, 2012

Another challenge for the D

Yes, Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham admits there are some similarities between the triple-option the Bulldogs saw last week against Georgia Southern and what they'll see Saturday against Georgia Tech (noon, ESPN).

But there are some significant differences, too.

"Formationally, they're different. Conceptionally, as far as getting the ball on the edge, they're the same. But it's just like any defense or offense they take on the personality of the guy doing it and Paul (Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson) does a good job with the things he wants to do," Grantham said after practice Tuesday. "They still have similar concepts as far as running the fullback and getting the ball on the edge with the quarterback and that kind of things, they just do it in a way whether it be by motion or formation."

Once again, the rushing numbers are there.

Georgia Tech leads the ACC in rushing with 324.9 yards per game, led by Orin Smith who has rushed for 673 yards and five scores.

So, how will the Bulldog defense do?

Last week, Georgia Southern did rush for 302 yards, although the Eagles only passed four times, completing one for 16 yards. Georgia Tech - despite ranking last in the ACC in passing offense - has thrown for 1,505 yards and 10 scores, although Grantham obviously knows how the Yellow Jackets butter their offensive bread.

He's hoping the fact the Bulldogs have some relative familiarity with the triple-option helps.

"I think anytime you do something continuity is good. The more you see things the better you get at it and I think our players understand too from the standpoint that we got to do it last week," Grantham said. "We know it's going to be a challenge and we've got to be ready to play because if you don't, you're going to give up some explosive plays that lead to points. That's when you give up points."

Marshall not able to practice

Freshman tailback Keith Marshall was in a green non-contact jersey Tuesday.

Marshall appeared to be fine as he was seen participating in drills during the two periods the media was allowed to watch Tuesday.

However, when the post-practice injury report was distributed after workouts, it was revealed that the North Carolina native was limited with a right shoulder contusion and did not take part in any contact.

Head coach Mark Richt was not available after practice, but is scheduled to address the media on Wednesday.

OL back at full strength

Chris Burnette's return from a shoulder injury will give the Bulldogs' offensive line a welcomed boost, offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said.

Burnette is expected to resume his position at right guard, with Kenarious Gates sliding back to left tackle with Mark Beard and Austin Long coming off the bench.

"I believe we've able to build some depth there, obviously with Beard playing and I think it's good to keep those guys fresh," Bobo said. "We'll rotate to keep those guys fresh in there. They're smart guys (Beard and Long) and I think they deserve to play. The best five will start the game but those other guys will play as well."

This and that

Georgia practiced for more than two hours in full pads on Tuesday afternoon in preparation for Saturday's showdown with Georgia Tech. "It was another good day of practice," said Richt in a statement. "I thought the scout team did a good job. They did as well as they could out there today. We are getting better." … Bobo said he believes Marshall and Todd Gurley are managing their first year as college running backs just fine in regards to staying fresh through the 12-game regular-season grind. "I think they're as fresh as they've been in years past. We've done a good job of rotating those guys and keeping them healthy," Bobo said. "Even last week, I didn't see the need to keep hammering those guys in there. I thought we could do both, but I also thought we could throw it around and that would help keep their carries down a little bit."

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