Rumph finally plays, leads Bulldogs in receiving

An unusual name sat atop the stat sheet under the category of receivers in Saturday’s game — Jonathon Rumph.

The enigmatic senior — who had not played in a game this season — made a late but impressive debut with 81 yards on four catches. And his receptions were mostly all important ones.

Rumph hauled in a 10-yard catch in traffic for a first down on third-and-five on Georgia’s second offensive possession. Later on that same drive, Rumph made a one-handed stab of a high throw on a crossing route and took it into Kentucky territory for a 19-yard gain.

Later, when the game was pretty much in hand, Rumph made an impressive sideline grab on a deep route, shook his defender and took it down field for a 47-yard gain.

“So happy for Rumph, I really am,” Georgia coach Mark Richt said. “Not only was I happy for him, his teammates were so happy to see him get in there and play and play big. … He really made his presence known. He even became a starter on our punt-return block unit. He’s finally healthy and playing ball and it was so nice to see him have a big day.”

Long a fan favorite, the 6-foot-5, 218-pound senior has been battling chronic hamstring issues since transferring from junior college two years ago. Saturday was the first game he’s played in all season.

“Just being patient and being ready for my number to be called so I could make plays,” Rumph said Saturday. “My hamstrings are feeling great now, probably the best they’ve felt since the injury (in 2013). I’m ready now.”