Notes from Georgia Tech’s practice Tuesday morning, its 12th of the preseason.
1. Freshman linebacker Demetrius Knight continued to work with the “B” defense. Knight has been among the more impressive freshmen thus far, particularly considering that he signed as a quarterback. It appears likely he’ll play this season.
Coach Geoff Collins said Monday that he was excited about Knight and proud of his quick adaptation to the team. He noted that Knight was among the first freshman to earn the honor of having the “GT” logo decal applied to his helmet, which is accorded when freshman show that “you believe in the culture – relentless effort, accountability, grit, toughness, all of those things.”
Linebacker David Curry praised Knight’s smarts and willingness to learn and play at a high level.
“And as dumb as that may sound, that’s what you need, and the kid wants to learn and he’s doing really well,” Curry said. “He’s making plays left and right. He may not know exactly where to go sometimes, but that’s what you expect from a freshman. But I think his attitude, his effort is phenomenal. He’s leading the whole defense sometimes in player load (a statistic created by the team’s wearable GPS technology that rates effort), which is unreal. I mean, the kid runs 22 miles an hour, so he’s unreal. I have a very high opinion of him.”
2. Freshman slot receiver Ahmarean Brown continued his standout preseason. In a 7-on-7 drill starting at the defense’s 10-yard line, Brown caught a ball in the corner of the end zone and another on the next play as he crossed the goal line in the middle of the field. Quarterback Liam Byrne looked for him a third time on the next play, as Brown tried to pivot away from nickel back Kaleb Oliver, but was unable to hold onto the ball against tight coverage.
“‘AB’ is electrifying,” quarterback Lucas Johnson said. “He has otherworldy speed. He’s so fast. You’ve just got to get the ball in his hands and let him do what he does.”
3. Also in the 7-on-7, quarterback Tobias Oliver threw two scoring passes from around the 15-yard line, one to running back Dontae Smith on a throw down the seam and another on a slant to wide receiver Jair Hawkins-Anderson. His next throw, to tight end Tyler Davis, was broken up by defensive back Jaylon King.
4. Guard Kenny Cooper was back for the second day after missing last week with an unspecified injury. Cooper worked at left guard with the “A” offensive line, which also included Zach Quinney and Jack DeFoor at the tackles, Jared Southers at right tackle and Mikey Minihan at center.
5. After practice, defensive tackle T.K. Chimedza was asked which member of the offensive line talks the most trash when the offensive and defensive lines face off in the one-on-one pass-rush drill. He thought for a moment before nominating offensive-line coach Brent Key.
“That’s who’s talking the most, really, out of the O-line group,” Chimedza said. “Coach Key, he’s always talking.”
Key said he reserves most of his voluble critiques for the offensive line, but he said the defensive line gets it, too.
“It’s pretty funny,” Chimedza said.