One thing I haven't seen much talk about is the amount of young players we saw on the Dawgs' side of the ball Saturday night in Athens. Thought I would go down the list and point out the guys I remembered making an impact. It was hard to tell at the game, and the replay on television was a 2 hour condensed version. Fortunately for me there were some standouts. Feel free to point out any I missed.
#1 Branden Smith, True Freshman CB/WR - Started with the fumble after returning the ball from deep in the endzone on a kickoff return. Made up for it with solid corner play and the Florida Gator-like burst of speed on the reverse.
#7 Orson Charles, True Freshman TE - Yes! He breaks Gator trophies with his butt and shows athleticism on both his catches Saturday night. 2 catches for 38 yards, but he can stretch the field and he really had to extend on one of those catches. Not sure how he did on blocking, if he blocked at all, and he seems kinda small compared to some of our previous TE's, but can't argue with results.
#12 Tavarres King, Redshirt Freshman WR - Played decent if not good. Had one nice run after a catch that was called back due to a holding call (I believe on true soph C Ben Jones). But still, he had some catches and showed some quickness. Finished with 3 catches for 29 yards and a long of 15. Missed a middle screen attempt to him early in the game that didn't really have a chance from the start. If we would've gotten that off, he did have some open field and some blockers in front of him. Good to see his name in the stat sheets though!
#69 Ty Frix, Redshirt Freshman Longsnapper - Boo this man! Apparently it was his first longsnap in a college game and he blasted it over the punter's head. Not sure how else he did, he'd be better off if I didn't know his name. But no biggie.
#18 Bacarri Rambo, Redshirt Freshman SS - Yes! RAMBO laying the WOOD on special teams! I was excited to actually see him make a play. And I don't know who I need to talk to, but after each tackle we need to hear "RAMBOOOOOOO" over the loudspeaker. Not sure if he had more than that one tackle, but he did stick a guy on a kickoff return.
#30 Carlton Thomas, Redshirt Freshman RB - Eh, okay game. 6 rushes, 22 yards, average of 3.7 with a long of 9. Dude is quick but doesn't break many tackles. He's no Richard Samuel. Still I think he's an interesting change of pace guy that can will end up breaking some.
#2 Brandon Boykin, Sophomore CB - Great on special teams all night and I thought he played fantastic on D as well. Not just the pick, he was always in the right spot. Easily my player of the game. Very impressed by him. If he took Asher's spot, well...don't get me wrong, I liked Asher and he was a good player, but we aren't missing him. Don't think I ever saw Asher have such an impact on a game.
#38 Marcus Dowtin, Sophomore MLB - I'm sure I saw him make a couple tackles here and there, but I can't recall any specific plays. And what the heck is up with the inabilty to find any defensive stats listed ANYWHERE. It's all offense stats everywhere. Maybe someone can help with defensive stats or just Dowtin's stats for the game. I just remember seeing him out there, so he did get some snaps.
#71 Cordy Glenn, Sophomore RT - Played well all game as far as I'm concerned. I can't remember more than one time when I took note of him, so usually that is a good thing when it comes to OL.
#8 AJ Green, Sophomore WR - 6 catches, 86 yards, 1 TD.
#61 Ben Jones, Sophomore C - I thought he played well. I know he had at least one penalty, maybe two, but I'm still amazed as how he gets downfield. I remember he pulled on one sweep play from the C position and had a good block. He's fast and just massive.
#29 Makiri Purgh, Sophomore FS - Recovering from swine flu?
#22 Richard Samuel, Sophomore RB - 15 rushes, 65 yards, average of 4.3 with 1 TD.
#94 DeAngelo Tyson, Sophomore DT - I remember him making some noise. Was it him that had that first sack in the first quarter? He put some pressure on Garcia on multiple occasions, not sure of his stat line.
#57 Blair Walsh, Sophomore P/K - Played as well as he was asked to play.
#83 Cornelius Washington, Sophomore DE - Played very, very well. Believe he also had a sack and I remember him causing some havok in the backfield.
#6 Logan Gray, Sophomore QB - Bad decoy on one play.
#4 Caleb King, Sophomore RB - Saw him on the bus after the game.
#42 Juston Houston, Sophomore DE - From what I remember he played well. I thought he was right on par with all our DE's, but Garcia just made some good plays with his feet.
I also believe Neland Ball and Justin Anderson played, both true sophs, but cannot recall any particular plays they had a hand in. This team is YOUNG and I know we'll lose some guys in the next couple years, but Mark Richt's great recruiting classes are already showing through. I'd say CMR's recruiting is what won us the game Saturday night. I think we all have plenty to be excited about in years to come.