DeAndre Baker gets ‘extra practice’ carrying ball over goal line


Georgia coach Kirby Smart said he was disappointed that senior defensive back DeAndre Baker dropped the ball short of the goal line during his interception return Saturday against South Carolina

Baker had a clear path to the end zone after returning an interception off Gamecocks quarterback Jake Bentley on the first drive of the game, but Baker dropped the ball near the 1-yard line.

“Obviously, I was disappointed he would do that prior to crossing the goal line,” Smart said. “I think it’s an effect of not having any opportunities to do that. It was almost the exact same situation in the spring game. We went back and showed him that today ... He’ll get some extra practice doing it today.”

Immediately after Baker’s mishap, senior linebacker Juwan Taylor picked up the fumbled ball on the Gamecocks’ 1-yard line and brought it over the goal line for the touchdown.

Taylor said he immediately realized Baker’s mistake and knew what he had to do.

“It was an immediate reaction,” Taylor said Monday. “Something didn’t look right, so I just scooped it up.”

When asked if any teammates have teased Baker for celebrating a touchdown too early, defensive lineman Julian Rochester laughed and said the team has mostly let the mistake go. 

“We’re going to talk about it today most likely, we’ll talk about it in the team meeting, but we scored, we got the touchdown, so we’ll just let it be,” Rochester said.

The Bulldogs play Middle Tennessee at 7:15 p.m. Saturday at Sanford Stadium. 


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in UGA / DawgNation

Georgia tight end Jackson Harris, linebacker Monty Rice set to return against Tennessee
Georgia tight end Jackson Harris, linebacker Monty Rice set to return against Tennessee

Georgia head coach Kirby Smart expects tight end Jackson Harris and linebacker Monty Rice to return for the Georgia-Tennessee game on Saturday. Harris suffered a foot injury during camp which kept him from action at the beginning of this season, and Rice missed the Missouri game with an MCL injury.  “Jackson Harris should be back this week...
Georgia remains No. 2 in AP Top 25 poll
Georgia remains No. 2 in AP Top 25 poll

Georgia remained No. 2 in the Associated Press Top 25 college football poll released on Sunday. The Bulldogs remained behind No. 1 Alabama, who got 60 first-place votes, all but one of the ballots. Clemson remained No. 3 and received the other first-place vote. The top five was rounded out by Ohio State and LSU, giving the SEC three of the top-five...
Elijah Holyfield’s role in UGA offense was worth the wait
Elijah Holyfield’s role in UGA offense was worth the wait

Elijah Holyfield knew what he was getting into. He knew when he signed with Georgia as a highly recruited prospect in 2016 that the Bulldogs’ incumbent tailbacks might keep him on the sideline for a while.  “Coming in, everybody says, ‘Yeah, I want to come in and start,’” Holyfield said this week. “But the likelihood...
Smart optimistic about status of Andrew Thomas, Terry Godwin
Smart optimistic about status of Andrew Thomas, Terry Godwin

Georgia coach Kirby Smart expected offensive tackle Andrew Thomas to be more active Monday ahead of Saturday’s matchup at Missouri.  Smart said Thomas, who suffered an ankle injury in Georgia’s win over South Carolina, might not practice Monday, but hopefully, the sophomore offensive tackle would get back working with the team. &ldquo...
Kirby Smart’s ‘good friend’ Derek Dooley adds wrinkle to Missouri game plan
Kirby Smart’s ‘good friend’ Derek Dooley adds wrinkle to Missouri game plan

Missouri coach Barry Odom’s decision to bring Derek Dooley on as wide receivers and quarterbacks coach was a great move, Georgia coach Kirby Smart said Monday.  Dooley, who Smart called a “good friend,” was a former graduate assistant at Georgia before moving on to serve stints as head coach at Louisiana Tech and Tennessee and...
More Stories