When head coach Mark Richt booted outside linebacker Montez Robinson from the team Sunday afternoon after his third arrest in five months, conventional wisdom suggested that someone would soon be moved to help shore up the depth.
Turns out senior Darryl Gamble is the man for the job.
A 6-foot-2, 250-pound native of Bainbridge, Gamble has started 17 career games for the Bulldogs, mostly at inside linebacker in Georgia's old 4-3 scheme.
Gamble and fellow senior Akeem Dent had been slotted at the starters at Mike and Mo, respectively, before Tuesday's move to Sam where he's currently lining up behind Cornelius Washington.
"Actually, before the whole Montez situation they were planning on moving me to Sam. We had already talked about it," Gamble said. "Me, myself, I like to know what everybody else is doing, so I think it will do nothing but help the team and myself know more than one position."
Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham said the move was a natural one for Gamble to make.
"We were actually going to move Darryl to outside backer for this week, even before everything this week, to give him some snaps there so he could play more than one position for us," Grantham said. "With the situation that came up, it's a natural fit now."
Second-year walk-on Reuben Faloughi has been moved over to Will behind Justin Houston while redshirt freshman Chase Vasser is back in the mix after practicing in the green non-contact jersey the past two weeks nursing a sore hamstring.
"Reuben's got a linebacker body. He's got some strength in his hands. He's young, he's conscience, he improves every day on things we ask him to improve upon," Grantham said. "He does a good job on setting the edge in the run game on tight ends and he's shown some pass-rush skills, particularly in the individuals and one-on-ones."
Gamble's promotion also meant a promotion of sorts for redshirt sophomore Christian Robinson, who Tuesday worked as the starter at Mike linebacker opposite Akeem Dent the starter at Moe.
Grantham hints Samuel will play
Converted running back Richard Samuel is starting to open Grantham's eyes.
"We're really working to try and progress Richard because he does show up as far as his ability to run and chase," Grantham said. "We're trying to work with him to see if we can find a role as we move forward with our team."
Samuel's opportunity for playing time obviously increased with Gamble moving to Sam linebacker, but Grantham his progress was becoming impossible to ignore.
There are still issues he needs to iron out.
"I just think the key is diagnosing blocking schemes. He has a feel for where the ball is going, but is it a downhill run, is it a wide play?" Grantham said. "I just think with Richard it's more just the recognition of the blocks and where I need to fit based upon the call and that just comes with experience and reps."
This and that
Caleb King (knee, sickness) missed his third straight practice Tuesday. King banged his knee late last week, but the injury is not considered serious.
Several of Georgia's top recruits and current signees, including T.J. Stripling, Ken Malcome and Alexander Ogletree attended practice.
The Bulldogs return to practice Thursday afternoon.
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