Roquan Smith has done his part not to think about UCLA.
Smith became nationally known this past February after committing to the Bruins. But shortly after his commitment ceremony, Smith was informed that defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich, who handled the star Montezuma linebacker's recruitment, was leaving to take a job in the NFL with the Falcons. Smith had yet to fax in his National Letter of Intent, giving him a chance to back out of the initial pledge.
Over a week later, Smith committed to the Bulldogs. He never signed his NLI and instead waited to enroll in the school. Georgia allowed him to do so and the rest is history. Smith is a Bulldog and not a Bruin. And that's what Smith said he's focusing on.
“I’m just glad to be here," Smith said. "I try not to think about the past. I’m happy that I’m here and came here.”
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Smith, who's at a playing weight of 225 pounds, is someone with a bright future but has the luxury of having a few veterans in front of him to learn from -- namely Tim Kimbrough, Reggie Carter and Lorenzo Carter. However, Kimbrough is injured at the moment with what was reported by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as a minor knee injury that required arthroscopic surgery.
Kimbrough is expected to be back for the regular-season opener against Louisiana-Monroe, with head coach Mark Richt saying he'll be "fine" without elaborating on the injury.
Kimbrough's absence in the short term could open up some meaningful practice reps for Smith, who could use the experience for his benefit. Nearing the end of the installation period of preseason practice, Smith said he's beginning to adjust better to the college game.
“Yeah it’s slowing down," Smith said. "Once you get the concepts, everything starts to slow down.”
Hitting the links
In case you missed it, my story on Trenton Thompson and the fact Georgia was "on the right track" when it came to recruiting him.
Another self-promotion, junior Reggie Davis is confident in this year's receiving corps despite the questions that surround the group.
The Red & Black's Sarah K. Spencer writes about where Georgia freshmen will be needed to contribute immediately on this year's team.
The Athens Banner-Herald's Marc Weiszer writes about Mark Richt's confidence in at least five receivers at the moment.
Dawg Post's Dean Legge provides a look at prized class of 2016 recruit Jacob Eason, already dubbed as Georgia's quarterback of the future.
Take it easy, Faton
In past scrimmages, quarterback Faton Bauta wanted to go full-contact and the coaching staff let him. In the midst of a quarterback battle with Brice Ramsey and Greyson Lambert, Bauta will have to stay away from the hits this time around.
The Bulldogs will hold their first scrimmage on Friday, effectively ending the installation period of preseason practice. Bauta will have his chance to stand out and showcase his abilities with the other two signal callers. But Richt doesn't want to risk injury to one of his three quarterbacks.
“I’m not going to be for it," Richt said. "If he wants to do it and he can convince me, I might do it. But right now there’s no plan for that. He’s pretty persuasive sometimes.”
Two, three receivers need to step up
Richt said there are a group of five receivers that he's happy with at the moment. Of the next five, well, a few need to assert themselves.
“We got about five, I’m pretty confident will be game-ready," Richt said. "Then there’s another pack of five that we need to get about two or three of those guys to move up to that other group. Some of it has to do with inexperience, some of it has to do with learning some of the new things we’re doing. We like to have eight guys, nine guys ready to go every game. I don’t think we’re there quite yet.”
Freshman defensive lineman Chauncey Rivers on adjusting to defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt: “You just got to be coachable and just work along with him, have a lot of effort. You have to put in the work to get on the field.”
Song of the day