Signing day is in the books, so it's a good time for a position-by-position review of where the Georgia football team stands. We start out with the game's most visible position, which also has, for the first time in five years at Georgia, a legitimate competition in the spring.
Returning players: Brice Ramsey (r-soph.); Faton Bauta (r-Jr.); Jacob Park (r-Fr.); Sam Vaughn (r-Fr., walk-on).
Early enrollees: None.
On the way: None.
Early favorite: Ramsey.
The skinny: For all the hype of signing day, the most important position in the game was an afterthought last week at Georgia, at least as far as the 2015 class. The program does have a commitment from Washington state’s Jacob Eason, perhaps the top quarterback in next year’s class, which is a big reason it didn’t pursue one for this year’s class. (There’s a good argument to be made that Georgia should have for depth purposes, but with Eason looming it may have been hard to convince anyone to sign this year.)
So Georgia enters this season with the same group as last season, minus starter Hutson Mason. There’s a lot of uncertainty at quarterback this spring, but not really in a chaotic sense. Everything will just be new. There will be a new starter, perhaps Ramsey, but don’t count the other two out just yet. There’s also a new coach, with Brian Schottenheimer on board. He hasn’t tipped his hand yet on any very early evaluations of his quarterbacks, other than saying he ran into Ramsey shortly before his introductory press conference. (Why didn’t he run into Park or Bauta? Was he avoiding them? Oh the intrigue!)
Ramsey has the best arm of the three scholarship quarterbacks, while Bauta has the best feet. Park is the happy medium in both categories. He also drew good reviews while running the scout team this past year. But it’s not often that players draw bad reviews while they’re redshirting.
Ramsey has the experience of this season, a few series here and there and then the second half of the bowl game. It's not quite like the couple starts Mason got to finish the 2013 season, but it's more than Bauta and Park have.
Vaughn, by the way, is 6-foot-3 and his arm didn’t look too shabby the times the media could watch practice last year. So if a calamity hit the quarterback position keep that in mind.
In any event, the quarterback competition will be one of the top stories of Georgia’s spring practice, with the coaching change adding to the intrigue. Ramsey would have been a heavier favorite if Mike Bobo had stuck around, but Schottenheimer is a new set of eyes. Ramsey still figures to have the edge, but now he has to prove himself all over again to a new coach.
Next up: Running backs.