March 5, 2009

No decision on QBs

Contrary to popular belief, Georgia offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said Thursday that he has not formulated any kind of decision in regards to Aaron Murray and Zach Mettenberger as to whether or not either will redshirt this fall.

It's been a popular belief that Georgia would play one of the two freshman quarterbacks and redshirt the other to create space between the classes, but Bobo appeared to discount that theory during a teleconference with reporters.

"Personally, I'd like to redshirt both of them, but who knows? A lot is going to depend on how Logan Gray progresses. Do we have enough depth?" Bobo said. "I'm not going to get a guy ready to play and then burn his redshirt year. We're going to do what's best for both kids and if we feel he's in position to help us in that area as a backup. If we don't feel it's in either's best interest and it (a redshirt) will help them in the long run, we'll do that. We're not necessarily planning to play one and redshirt the other to have spacing. We'll do what's best for both kids."

Regardless on what the future holds, Bobo said the last thing he wants Murray and Mettenberger to worry about now is concern themselves with any kind of early pecking order.

Learning the Bulldogs' intricate offensive system will be the first item on their respective agendas.

"My main focus with these two guys is to try and teach them as much as possible about our system, teach them how we do things, how I coach and get them ready as much as possible to compete in the fall," Bobo said. "I'm not going to me making any kind of rash decisions as far as they're concerned. Their heads are going to be spinning with everything we do, and there will be nerves and all that kind of stuff that they will be dealing with. It's definitely going to be an adjustment for them."

Obviously, coaching up Mettenberger and Murray won't be Bobo's only concern.

Despite finishing second in the SEC in total offense in 2008, getting Joe Cox ready to take over for Matthew Stafford and finding a suitable replacement for running back Knowshon Moreno are just two more of the aspects of Georgia's offense that he will have to address.

But even if Stafford and Moreno had returned, Bobo said there still would have been much work to be done.

"I was not pleased with the way we played last year. We had some productive numbers but that didn't mean we were productive. We lost three games - got blown out in two of them - then disappeared for a stretch and lost to our arch rival," Bobo said. "I am excited about getting going, and I'm glad we came back in the last game and beat Michigan State, but there's still that bad taste in everybody's mouth."

Bobo did say that he remains excited about the potential of redshirt sophomore running back Caleb King, who fell out of favor due to his blocking in Georgia's loss to Florida.

"He's got to be more consistent but Caleb has shown us flashes and shown you that he's able to make some things happen when he gets in," Bobo said. "He's going to be the primary back this spring with Richard (Samuel) out with his wrist and he's got a great chance with the hard work he's put in this offseason. He's definitely got the opportunity now to show what he can do and we're excited about him. He's got a bright future along with the rest of the other backs."

Up front, until Trinton Sturdivant returns in preseason, Clint Boling will remain at left tackle. As for the rest of the starting offensive line, Bobo repeated what head coach Mark Richt has stated several times before - the best five linemen will play.

"It's just like we've told them before, we're going to find the best five guys and find ways to get them on the field," Bobo said. "We'll figure out what's the best fit for them. It won't be a situation where if two guys are at left tackle, we'll play one and the other one will be the backup. If he's one of the best five, he's going to play, too."

NOTES: Despite assistant Stacy Searels' additional title of "Running Game Coordinator," Bobo said his duties would remain unchanged and they will work together the same as they have the previous two seasons. "It won't be any different," Bobo said. "We've always worked very close together." … Unlike Searels, fellow assistants John Jancek, Tony Ball and Rodney Garner, Bobo said he has not interviewed with any other schools.



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