November 7, 2011

Will Dawgs D tire?



In this day of instant information, via Twitter, Facebook, or whatever social media one prescribes, it didn't take long for Auburn quarterback Clint Moseley's words about Georgia's defense to reach the ears of Georgia linebacker Christian Robinson.

In a story published by AuburnSports.com , the Tiger sophomore was asked to give his impression of the Bulldog defense, ranked in the top three of the SEC for much of the year.

"They're really good internally on the D-line," Moseley said. "They've got huge guys there. We're going to have to get them tired. When they're fresh, they're hard to beat. They can play with anybody. So we've got to wear them down. You can see that they get tired and that's where we need to get them. They're good tacklers, they cover well. They're a complete defense. But if we execute like we can and we have been in practice, I don't think they'll be able to stop us."

Robinson, of course, had a different opinion about that.

"It's a strategy. I think some teams have tried that. We just have to be ready for whatever they throw at us, whether it's tempo or whether it's a style of play we haven't seen, a certain blocking scheme," Robinson said. "They're going to do what they think is best and if they think it's going to get us tired, we'll be prepared. But we do stay conditioned, we do stay in shape and we ran today. We're worrying about being ready, physically, mentally everything. That's part of it."

Robinson credits strength and conditioning coach Joe Tereshinksi's program for helping the Bulldogs become what he feels is now able to go a full four quarters if needed to pull out a win.

"We had a fourth-quarter victory against Florida, they tried to spread us out and run and they had fast guys that could out-run you," Robinson said. "So, we're going to take everything, we're going to look at what they do. They've had more than a week to prepare. If they want to go fast-paced, we've played some teams that did that early on and I'd say we're in better shape than we were then."

Jones not expecting any backlash

Last year's game at Auburn resulted in more than a few chippy moments between the two teams, including the final moments when punches were thrown.

Much of Georgia's ire was directed at former Tiger star Nick Fairley, who took exception with, what the Bulldogs thought were late hits, against quarterback Aaron Murray. But according to center Ben Jones, he doesn't believe there will be any residual anger come Saturday's game (3:30, CBS) at Sanford Stadium.

"He's (Fairley) not there anymore so it's a new year, a new start," Jones said. "I'm just focused on protecting Murray and not let him get hit at all. If Fairley was still there, we'd still not want him to get hit. No matter who's there we're going to try and protect him."

That's not to say he isn't expecting an old-fashioned slugfest for the 115th meeting between the two schools. He just doesn't believe things will get out of hand.

"Auburn's having a great year, we are, too," Jones said. "I don't think it's going to come to that. It is an emotional game, but I don't think it's going to come to that."

Jones tabbed lineman of the week

Jones was named the SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week for his performance in Saturday's 63-16 win over New Mexico State.

Jones graded out a team-best 85 percent as part of an offense that racked up 637 yards of offense. The total offense and 63 points represented team highs since Mark Richt became the Bulldog coach in 2001.

This and that

Kicker Brandon Bogotay said he and Blair Walsh still are not sure if they will be alternate the kicking duties like they did against New Mexico State. "We're just going to be ready whenever we're called upon," said Bogotay, who converted all four of his extra points against NMSU. "We know that could change at the last moment, so we've just got to stay prepared to get the job done." … Georgia returned to the practice field Monday, practicing for just about an hour and a half. "Everybody's in good spirits, no doubt," Richt said following the practice. "It was a pretty night, nice and cool, and it's that time of year where you can get a little more energy. With the wins that we've had and knowing what's at stake and knowing we're finally in a position to control it. I think the guys are feeling pretty good about it." … Richt said the captains for the Auburn game will be Jones, offensive tackle Cordy Glenn, defensive end Abry Jones and cornerback/returner Brandon Boykin.

Anthony Dasher is the managing editor for UGASports
and he can be reached via email at dash@ugasports.com.