ATHENS -- A few weeks ago, Georgia offensive line coach Will Friend almost sounded like he was pleading when he said of Cordy Glenn, He could be a dominant player. We need him to be one.
And that was before recent events. Now the Bulldogs really need Glenn to be dominant.
Barring something unforeseen, the rising senior will serve as the left tackle for the Georgia football team in 2011. The knee injury to Trinton Sturdivant, who had surgery Tuesday, leaves Glenn as one of only two returning offensive linemen who started every game last year (center Ben Jones is the other).
The problem for Glenn is he started those games at left guard. He was shifted to tackle before spring practice.
Im starting to get my rhythm back, Glenn said this week. Its a little bit of an adjustment going from guard to tackle. But with a couple of practices, its helped me out. Im getting used to it now.
Glenn and Sturdivant were rotating at the two tackle spots, as Friend tried to establish some flexibility for the season. But when Sturdivant went down, the left spot essentially became Glenns by default.
The team needs an experienced player to protect quarterback Aaron Murrays blind side.
I trust Cordy already, Murray said. Hes a tremendous athlete. As a left tackle, I dont think anybody in the countrys is that big and can run and can move like Cordy does.
Friend doesnt seem quite as confident in that assessment. He has asked Glenn -- listed at 6-foot-5 and 320 pounds -- to lose some weight.
He may have gotten too big, said Friend, who was hired in February. Hes a big person to begin with; hes athletic, and I think that he can always improve on that and being able to move for four quarters.
A lesser concern appears to be Glenns ability to shift to tackle. While he has played guard for most of his college career -- a total of 32 starts -- he has experience at left tackle. When Sturdivant got hurt in 2009, Glenn shifted to tackle for four games.
That was a long time ago, but it helped out a lot, Glenn said, laughing.
Glenn contemplated entering the NFL draft after last season and was rated one of the top underclassman prospects at guard. His pro future could still be at that position, and at a minimum, the shift to tackle adds to his versatility to his resume.
But when it comes to his senior season, the focus is on anchoring the line. Friend reiterated that this week, using almost the same words as a few weeks ago.
He could be a real good player, and hes gotta play good for us, Friend said. Hes got a lot of potential and hes done it. Cordys a smart guy and an athletic guy. Hes had a good spring.
And his team badly needs him to have a good fall.