Georgia Bulldogs ‘know Bo’ - Nix that is

ATHENS — Give Kirby Smart credit. Georgia’s seventh-year coach didn’t pussyfoot around about who might start at quarterback for the Oregon Ducks.

First-year Ducks coach Dan Lanning has played coy about his quarterback competition in preseason camp, even though it consists of senior Bo Nix, a 38-game starter at Auburn, and two redshirt freshmen who have four game appearances combined, all in mop-up roles.

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“I know who the quarterback’s going to be, so I’m not worried about that,” Smart said when asked about it at UGA’s Media Day on Monday. “I’m a lot more worried about how our guys play and how our guys do.”

Even Lanning’s attempts at deception have been almost tongue-in-cheek. He has been asked about it at literally every media appearance he has made during preseason practice, including two days ago.

“When you guys see that first snap, we’ll see who’s out there on the field,” said Lanning, UGA’s former defensive coordinator. “I’m not playing quarterback, I’ll tell you that.”

No, it’ll be Nix. That means it will be his fourth game in four seasons against the Bulldogs for the 6-foot-3, 214-pound senior from Pinson, Ala. And while Nix is 0-3 in those games, it really hasn’t been his fault. He almost brought the Tigers back from a 21-0 deficit in a 21-14 loss as a freshman, then suffered blowouts the last two years. In his career, he has 34 yards rushing and 639 yards on 56.3% passing with a TD and two interceptions against Georgia

“It’s tough moving the ball on Georgia; I know that from experience,” Nix said earlier this summer. “But we just need to go out there and execute as a team.”

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The Bulldogs stand ready.

“The three times I’ve seen him he’s been dynamic and electric, and I expect to see the same things from him this time, just in (a) different scheme,” senior outside linebacker Nolan Smith said.

Said senior safety Christopher Smith: “He’s very athletic, improvises a lot, makes very good plays for his offense. I think they were averaging something upward of 30 points a game at Auburn. So he’s definitely a gamer and a very familiar opponent.”

Quick hits

Quarterback Stetson Bennett grudgingly revealed the pregame playlist he listens to while awaiting kickoff. “I don’t know if I should say it,” he sighed before revealing that “Bubbly,” by Colbie Caillat, is his favorite song. He said he goes from there to “Juicy,” by Notorious B.I.G. “Those are my two,” Bennett said. … Smart said freshman running back Andrew Paul (knee) will undergo an ACL reconstruction this week. However, other than wide receiver Arian Smith (ankle), he does not expect any players in the Bulldogs’ two-deep to miss Saturday’s game (3:30 p.m., ABC). He pronounced guard Tate Ratledge (foot) and defensive back Tykee Smith (knee) as full go.

Nolan Smith had some encouraging words when asked to assess the performance of freshman defensive lineman Mykel Williams in preseason camp: “I think he’s going to play the role of Travon Walker. He’s the spitting image of Travon Walker. I tell people that all the time. His arms are long, he moves just as fast and he’s a great athlete.” Walker was, of course, the No. 1 pick in the last NFL draft.