September 30, 2009

Richt gives update on starting cornerback

Starting cornerback Brandon Boykin missed Wednesday's workout, but according to head coach Mark Richt is still expected to play in Saturday's game against 4th-ranked LSU.

"I think he's probable, I think he'll play," said Richt, who explained that Boykin was "ill."

Boykin watched practice in shorts and a jersey, but did not participate in any drills.

"He doesn't feel good, but we think he's going to practice tomorrow (Thursday). We think he'll be fine," said Richt, who did not elaborate on the illness. "He's ill. I'll just say he's ill, how about that?"

Boykin was not available for comment.

Richt said he was unclear as to when Boykin first became sick.

"He started out (Tuesday) but he wasn't feeling very good afterward, I think," Richt said. "I think he got in a good bit, but I don't know if he got it all."

The Bulldogs certainly need Boykin healthy.

If the former Fayette County star is unable to go, it puts the Bulldogs in somewhat of a dilemma, as to exactly who will take over his starting role.

Fortunately, junior Vance Cuff (knee) was able to practice after missing last week's game against Arizona State with a minor knee injury.

Other players the Bulldogs would look to include true freshman Branden Smith and redshirt freshman Sanders Commings, who saw about 12 snaps each at the short corner spot last week against the Sun Devils.

Wednesday's workout excites Richt

Georgia worked out for almost two and a half hours Wednesday in preparation for Saturday's game against LSU and Richt liked what he saw.

"This was the best Wednesday we've had all year, I can safely say that," said Richt. "I was pleased with the effort, the enthusiasm. Everyone was competing and having fun. They seemed to enjoy it for a change and maybe found out that you can get the work done and enjoy it."

Richt said the cool temperatures, plus the knowledge that LSU was next on the docket, contributed to the brisk workout.

"Every game in the SEC there's a lot at stake, and this one in particular," said Richt. "We're getting ready to play a highly ranked opponent that we know has tremendous athletes and great coaches. It's going to be a challenge, and if you're a true competitor, it will excite you."

During Richt's tenure, the Bulldogs are 20-5 against teams from the SEC West. Georgia already has tallied a 52-41 road win over Arkansas earlier this month. Meanwhile, LSU hasn't won in Athens since 1987. The Georgia-LSU series is tied at 6-all in games played in Athens. Overall, LSU leads the series 14-12-1 and Georgia has won the past three meetings.

Murray back to throwing

Freshman quarterback Aaron Murray has been allowed to resume throwing after sitting out approximately three weeks with triceps tendinitis.

"I threw most of the practice today and I felt real good. I actually started throwing a little last week and they slowly worked me up to 20 yards, 30 yards. I'm feeling good," Murray said after practice Wednesday. "(Tuesday) I threw it like 60-65 yards. Today, I wasn't launching balls, just getting myself into as good a shape as I can."

Murray said he still has not been told by coaches whether or not he will redshirt this year, but said he's fine with whatever decision is made.

He just wants to continue improving his game so when his chance comes, he'll be ready to take full advantage of his opportunity.

"I'm more comfortable in the pocket mostly because I'm more comfortable with the plays. I can come to the line of scrimmage and not have to think go out there and play football. I don't worry about what my drop is, the defense this, the defense that. Boom, I see it, let's go play."

Cox feels Tebow's pain

Quarterback Joe Cox admitted he did a double-take when he saw the replay of Florida quarterback Tim Tebow get knocked out last week on a hit by Kentucky's Taylor Wyndham.

"I saw it when we got back from the lockerroom and I just cringed," Cox said. "He's a 240-pound guy and got hit like that. If that had been me, I'd have been broken in half."

Despite the fact that Tebow plays for Georgia's arch rival, Cox said he felt sympathy for the former Heisman Trophy winner.

"You hate seeing stuff like that. As much as people (fans) around here are like, happy, that it was Tebow, as a quarterback you've got to have sympathy for something like that, especially with the type of player he is," Cox said. "You hate to see guys get hurt like that."

Curran feels for USC back

Linebacker Rennie Curran offered his best wishes to Southern Cal running back Stefan Johnson, who was severely injured when a weight slipped from his hands while attempting the bench press and fell across his throat.

"That kind of thing is always in the back of your mind when you're lifting that you've got to be extremely careful," Curran said. "Of course you trust the guy that's lifting with you, but you still need to take precautions and make sure you get that thing back on the stand to avoid that kind of thing happening."

Although Curran said that kind of accident is rare, he's not surprised that it occurred during the season.

"When you work out with weights during the season, you're not lifting as heavy as you do during the summer and you can tend to become more lax and not really pay attention," he said. "During the summer, you're lifting the heavier weights, and you're more focused with what you're doing. When you're doing lighter weights, you're not as serious so those type of things are bound to happen."

Wooten reveling in first career catch

Freshman Rantavious Wooten has continued to receive more playing time as the season has rolled along, and last Saturday came up with his first two receptions against Arizona State.

One a 27-yard pass from Cox came on a big third-down play.

"When they put me in there in the fourth quarter, I knew they were putting me in there for a reason," Wooten said. "When I heard the call, I thought to myself this might be coming my way. I got to the first down marker and looked right in Joe's eye. I just wanted to make sure I made the catch before anything else happened."

Wooten, who finished with two catches for 38 yards, also took a handoff in the backfield and picked up a three-yard gain.

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