live video

Procession for world-renowned evangelist Rev. Billy Graham

Kirby Smart on why tailbacks should come to Georgia


ATHENS – Georgia has two great senior tailbacks. It has a freshman who looks like he might be great too, and two sophomores who look promising. And it has a commitment from a five-star tailback recruit. And it’s trying to secure yet another one.

So how do Georgia coaches convince running backs to keep coming when good ones are already there?

“You just turn on the tape of the last game,” head coach Kirby Smart answered. “And say, Do you want to be one of those guys? Or do you want to be one of the guys that’s pass-(protecting) for everybody else in the country? They’re throwing there.”

A bit direct, almost brash. But also correct.

Georgia has run the ball 292 times this year, tied for the most of any Power 5 program. (Oregon is the other.) As college football becomes more spread-oriented and pass-heavy, Smart is telling recruits that there’s still somewhere to go and carry the ball the traditional way.

“And they say, I want to be one of those guys, and carry the ball,” Smart said of recruits, then turned to reporters: “I don’t know, how much did we carry it (last game)? Thirty?”

More than 50 times, actually.

“Fifty?” Smart said. “Good gosh. That’s a lot of carries. So that helps (with recruits).”

Nick Chubb is the SEC’s leading rusher through six games, with 618 yards, while Sony Michel is 10 th with 406 yards. They’re both seniors, but once they leave it doesn’t look like the drop-off will be steep.

D’Andre Swift has 264 rushing yards as a freshman, and is fourth in the SEC with an average carry of 7.3 yards. Sophomores Brian Herrien (125 yards and a touchdown) and Elijah Holyfield (130 rushing yards and a touchdown) have to be the best fourth- and fifth-string tailbacks in the country.

There’s more on the way: Zamir White, a five-star recruit from Laurinburg, N.C., committed over the summer. White wasn’t deterred by the presence of Swift, Herrien and Holyfield. And Georgia is in the hunt for James Cook, a four-star prospect from Miami, Fla.

This embarrassment of tailback riches isn’t that new: When Michel and Chubb arrived the team had then-juniors Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall.

“That’s just Georgia,” Michel said. “We have a lot of running backs. We’re always going to have great running backs. We’re going to recruit great running backs and I think we’re going to keep that going.”

The post Kirby Smart on why tailbacks should come to Georgia appeared first on DawgNation.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Sports

Atlanta Motor Speedway moves up start time of Sunday’s race
Atlanta Motor Speedway moves up start time of Sunday’s race

With rain forecast for race day, Atlanta Motor Speedway officials announced an hour earlier start time for Sunday’s Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500. The scheduled drop of the green flag is now 1 p.m., as opposed to the original 2 p.m. start time. That subsequently moves up the scheduled start time for all the pre-race events. Gates will open now...
7A basketball: Predictability to give way to blockbusters
Two rounds are done in the state basketball tournament, and now it’s about to get interesting in Class AAAAAAA. Rounds one and two have been predicable. This blog correctly forecast seven of the eight quarterfinalists in both the boys and girls brackets. That’s a testament to predictability, not the predictor.  The boys’ elite...
Tennessee student dies after collapsing during amateur boxing match
Tennessee student dies after collapsing during amateur boxing match

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — A Tennessee student died in the midst of an amateur boxing event on Friday night, according to a WBIR.com report. Tanner Wray, a 20-year-old junior, collapsed to the mat as he was walking to his corner in the second round of his fight. Wray, who according to his Facebook page was an aerospace engineering and science...
WATCH: Danny Amendola stops by ESPN’s College GameDay set
WATCH: Danny Amendola stops by ESPN’s College GameDay set

Former Texas Tech wide receiver Danny Amendola was back in Lubbock, Texas, for ESPN’s College GameDay. The game between No. 6 Texas Tech and No. 8 Kansas, which is set for a 4:15 p.m. ET start on ESPN, is pivotal in the Big 12 championship race. Who better to get Texas Tech fans fired up than the two-time Super Bowl champion? The...
4-star OT Stacey Wilkins names 4 Big 12 schools in top 10
4-star OT Stacey Wilkins names 4 Big 12 schools in top 10

On Saturday, Camden (Ark.) Fairview offensive tackle Stacey Wilkins announced his top 10 and four Big 12 programs survived the cut. Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and TCU are each still being considered entering the final stretch in Wilkins’ recruitment, along with Arkansas, Tennessee, Missouri, USC, Ole Miss and Memphis...
More Stories