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6 minutes ago, 95Dawg said:

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Today at 5:07 PM
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Bkdawg34 said:
Rusty still saying that he's leaning that JD99 comes back for another year.


I just heard from a friend with some knowledge (his best friend is a former UGA player) that JD99 decided today to return for his senior season.

They also said TC3 is leaving as well as Zeus and of course Hill.

Off topic, they said Gilbert is coming up UGA and something about a mystery CB (personally guessing Ricks) as well.

I hope Tyson Campbell would come back but the three I think are going to make us that much better are JT Daniels, Jordan Davis and James Cook.  I think James Cook could be a monster next year.  

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53 minutes ago, usmcdirtybird said:

I hope Tyson Campbell would come back but the three I think are going to make us that much better are JT Daniels, Jordan Davis and James Cook.  I think James Cook could be a monster next year.  

So do we know if Cook is coming back?

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2 minutes ago, usmcdirtybird said:

no clue.  I hope he does.  I think it makes sense for Zeus to leave.  Zeus is like Holyfield.  Another year is just wear and tear and will not do anything for their draft stock.  James Cook can do more with another year.   

Very true, and Cook absolutely needs another year.

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The Athletic

Emerson: Georgia needs to take a step forward in 2021

ATLANTA, Ga. — Tyrique Stevenson was the last Georgia player to leave the field after the Peach Bowl. It was easy to spot him: The sophomore cornerback, who had made the decisive defensive play of the game, had his arms spread wide, looking out at the rest of the field.


Maybe Stevenson was just soaking in the moment, a victory to end a long slog of a season. Or maybe he was looking out at that field and thinking: We’ll be back here next December.

Georgia better be.

Three years ago in the same building Kirby Smart proclaimed, after the national championship game loss: “We’re not going anywhere.” They haven’t. Georgia is about to finish in the top 10 for the fourth consecutive season, and no reasonable person would argue that Georgia isn’t in that group of elite programs: Alabama, Ohio State and Clemson form the clear top three, then Georgia and Oklahoma head up the next group.

But Georgia can’t live off 2017 and its recruiting rankings for much longer.

The shine, in fact, may already be well off.

Needing a 53-yard field goal to beat a Group of 5 team in the Peach Bowl isn’t quite what anyone had in mind for this season. Smart is about to enter his sixth season as head coach, and the narrative has turned from when he will deliver that seemingly inevitable national title, to if he ever will.

That doesn’t mean Smart has to do it this year. The window is still a long one for Georgia, thanks to the recruiting and talent base, especially with five-star quarterback Brock Vandagriff arriving in the 2021 class. Smart is not on any sort of hot seat. The temperature is around 30, and should remain there for a while.

It’s not national championship or bust for Georgia in 2021. But getting back to the SEC championship — or at least the Playoff, a la Alabama’s backdoor berth in 2017 — needs to happen if Georgia is to remain elite. Smart and Georgia need to reverse the slide since that magical 2017 season, a gradual but tangible slippage in yearly results:

• 2017: Won SEC championship.

• 2018: Barely lost SEC championship.

• 2019: Blown out in SEC championship.

• 2020: Didn’t make the SEC championship.

But the way seems clear again for the Bulldogs to make it back to Atlanta in 2021:

Florida loses quarterback Kyle Trask, tight end Kyle Pitts and other non-Kyles who were key parts of this team. Nobody else in the SEC East seems an immediate threat, unless Jeremy Pruitt does a 180 with Tennessee.

Georgia, meanwhile, is poised to keep improving on offense, as long as it can hold on to most of its key pieces. JT Daniels is at the top of the list, as is offensive coordinator Todd Monken. The last thing the team needs right now is another new starting quarterback or a fourth offensive coordinator in as many years. The safe assumption is both stick around for another year, but the implications of either leaving are dire enough that Georgia fans are forgiven their angst.

The failing for Georgia the last two years has been too many hits at key spots on offense. Two years ago, the team lost Mecole Hardman and Riley Ridley in addition to other experienced receivers, and returned just 24 percent of its receiving production, an important tell for offensive performance. Throw in a new offensive coordinator, and Georgia’s offense plummeted. But if everyone expected to return does return in 2021, then Georgia will have more than 90 percent of its receiving yards back.

Elsewhere on offense, the key is to absorb some attrition, but not too much:  Either tailback Zamir White or James Cook can be lost, but both would be a big hit. Ditto for offensive linemen Trey Hill and Jamaree Salyer, two juniors on a unit that without an injured Hill and Ben Cleveland didn’t look good at all against Cincinnati. (Cleveland, who it seemed had been around since the Dooley era, has turned pro, but fellow senior guard Justin Shaffer hasn’t announced anything yet.)

Imagine an offense with JT Daniels throwing to George Pickens, Jermaine Burton, Darnell Washington, Kearis Jackson — among others — and handing off to White, Cook, Kendall Milton or Kenny McIntosh. If Georgia can make it to August with most of this group intact, then look out.

What about the defense? It’s already absorbing key losses, while reinforcements await.

Edge rusher Azeez Ojulari made his decision to turn pro official on Saturday, a day after his three-sack, defensive MVP performance in the Peach Bowl. Jermaine Johnson has also transferred to Florida State. But the team still has two former five-star edge rushers, Adam Anderson and Nolan Smith, along with Robert Beal and MJ Sherman.

The defensive line may still be in good shape, too. Nose tackle Jordan Davis would be a huge returner, literally and figuratively, but even if he doesn’t come back Jalen Carter, a five-star recruit a year ago, is ready to see more snaps.

The secondary will be a big question, with cornerback Eric Stokes having turned pro and cornerback Tyson Campbell mulling his decision. The team got an early preview of life without free safety Richard LeCounte, and it wasn’t great, but strong safety Lewis Cine will be even better next year, and Christopher Smith can provide veteran savvy next to him.

There’s also Stevenson, expected to be one of the starting cornerbacks. He’s yet another one of those former five-stars.

Again, talent isn’t the issue here. Georgia’s last five classes have ranked third, first, second, first and third nationally in the 247Sports Composite. Even with a good deal of those players transferring out, Smart and his staff have been active in the portal themselves. They will be again this offseason.

The schedule is manageable, too: Georgia does open with Clemson in Charlotte, N.C., but the Tigers will not have quarterback Trevor Lawrence — though D.J. Uiagalelei is another five-star. That game looks like a toss-up, and the loser can still make the Playoff by winning its conference.

Georgia can do that. The East looks there for the taking again, and Alabama loses receiver DeVonta Smith and others, though the Crimson Tide always reload.

Back to that moment three years ago, when Smart pointed to how Georgia stood up to Alabama, nearly winning the national title, and proclaimed: “I think everybody can see that Georgia’s going to be a force to be reckoned with.”

Georgia can be a force again in 2021. The Bulldogs need to be. This year wasn’t terrible. But it was another tangible step backward. This program needs to get back on the upward track in 2021. It’s time to make Georgia a force again.


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3 hours ago, AutumnEffect said:

It has been suspiciously quiet for Campbell. I thought he'd be long gone by now. Interesting... I wonder if he's seeing Surtain about to go top 10 and knowing that could easily be him if he bets on himself.

All the chatter indicates he's leaving. But until he does I guess there is a chance. 


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