ATHENS -- Georgia coach Mark Richt said freshmen Alec and Alexander Ogletree and Derek Owens most likely will play this season, but he is uncertain about the other freshmen.
“We’re still determining that,” Richt said Thursday. “You go one, two, three, four games into the season, and you might be thinking you’re going to redshirt a guy, and then he doesn’t redshirt.”
Richt said that the Ogletree brothers and Owens might see most of their action on special teams.
Alec, a safety out of Newnan, was one of Georgia’s top-rated recruits this year, and at 6-foot-3, 224 pounds, he has the size to make an immediate impact.
Alex was recruited as a linebacker, but at 5-10, 207, was moved to fullback.
“I would say Alec would be more likely to [play],” Richt said. “If anybody would redshirt, it could be Zander, but I don’t know if we’ll redshirt Zander. I think he’s got a lot of value for us on special teams, and he’s a pretty solid fullback prospect.”
Owens is a 5-9, 166-pound cornerback from Jacksonville.
Bobo on the field
Richt said offensive coordinator Mike Bobo will call plays from the sideline this season.
He started the 2009 season in the coaches’ box, but went to the sideline after a 45-19 loss to Tennessee. The next week, Georgia defeated Vanderbilt 34-10 and scored at least 27 points in five of the next six games, including a 44-20 win over Texas A&M in the Independence Bowl.
"As far as I can remember, I think he said he wanted to stay down," Richt said. "I think he really wanted to be able to look [quarterback Aaron Murray] in the eye and see how he's doing. You can learn a lot by looking in a guy's eyes about where he's at mentally. You may not necessarily want to pull a guy out if he's struggling, but you want to know that he's struggling, so you don't put too much on him."
Wide receiver Logan Gray, who sprained his ankle at the end of Tuesday's practice, could be out a week to 10 days, Richt said.
“It’s a shame. Logan has been practicing so well and had his best practice, and then he ends up spraining his ankle right at the very end,” Richt said. “Seems to be the way it goes, though.”
He said linebacker Michael Gilliard (hamstring) "is very close" to returning to practice, and linebacker Akeem Dent (toe) could be back next week, but most likely won't return until the week before the Sept. 4 opener against Louisiana-Lafayette.
Center Ben Jones (knee) will be out until the week of the opener, and Richt said "we have very high hopes" that guard Cordy Glenn (mono) also will be able to practice that week.
Safety Nick Williams was injured during practice, but Richt wasn't sure what happened.
“Whatever it was, it wasn’t too severe because it looked like he was going full speed at the very end,” Richt said.
Scout teams see action
Georgia’s offense and defense worked against scout teams for the first time.
“I think we’re ready to start focusing on somebody else besides our own team,” Richt said. “We’re still doing some fastball stuff against each other, offensively and defensively, just to keep the game-type tempo.”
Richt said the players and the coaches are ready to start focusing on Louisiana-Lafayette, which was 6-6, 4-4 in the Sun Belt Conference last season.
“I’m not sure if whoever was on the scout team [Thursday] will be on the scout team for the rest of the year,” Richt said. “It’s always a tough day for some guys who were hoping not to be on the scout team, right off the bat, but that’s a very important position for us. We have to have those guys do a great job of working for us.”
Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham is spending time this week cross training several members of the defense. Without being specific, he talked about ends practicing at nose, inside linebackers practicing on the outside, and vice versa, and safeties seeing reps at both the free and strong-safety positions.
“Defense is about making plays and being productive, and to do that, you have to find ways to get your best players on the field, if you can,” Grantham said. “To do that, sometimes you have to move them around and kind of go through some growing pains with them for a couple of days, but down the road, it’ll help you because it gives you more depth.”
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