UGA Football

Cleveland penciled in for start against Kentucky

Georgia offensive lineman Ben Cleveland.
Georgia offensive lineman Ben Cleveland. Georgia Sports Communications

Ben Cleveland is in line for his first career start with the Georgia football program.

Cleveland, who redshirted last year and has been a backup this season, lined up with the first team during pre-game warm-ups. The Georgia PA announced then revealed Cleveland would earn the start.

Cleveland, at 6-foot-6 and 340 pounds, is Georgia's biggest offensive lineman on the roster. He did receive some first-team snaps at offensive guard throughout the week.

Prior to the first-team guard reps, Cleveland had been serving as a backup at right tackle. Georgia decided to shake things up on the offensive line after last week's game against Auburn, in which the Bulldogs were only able to total 46 rushing yards.

Cleveland was with the first team instead of Solomon Kindley at right guard.

Earlier this week, left tackle Isaiah Wynn said Cleveland is someone who is shown the ability to get a good push up against defensive linemen.

“He’s one guy who’s definitely capable of getting movement,” Wynn said. “He definitely plays an intimidation factor. If you see a guy like him, it kind of messes with you mentally because he’s so big.”

This is the fourth time Georgia's starting offensive line has changed this season. At the start of the season, Pat Allen was Georgia's starter at left guard with Dyshon Sims starting at right guard. A week later, Sims was still starting at right guard but Kendall Baker replaced Allen in the starting lineup.

Once Kindley healed up from an ankle injury, he became Georgia's starter at right guard in the third game against Samford. Since then, the Bulldogs hadn't made a change to the unit.

For the season, Georgia's offensive line has helped pave Georgia's rushing game to an average of 256 yards per game. Prior to the Auburn game, the Bulldogs were averaging 289 yards each outing.

Cleveland came to Georgia as a highly-touted recruit after a standout high school career at Stephens County.