April 15, 2012

Wilson shows his worth



When defensive coaches were asked about some potential new contributors that Georgia fans might keep their eyes on, linebacker Ramik Wilson's name kept popping to mind.

The sophomore showed exactly why with his performance in the Saturday's G-Day game after he led all defenders with seven tackles, two for losses of six yards, including a quarterback sack.

For good measure, Wilson - who played for the Red squad - also picked off a pass by Christian LeMay in the second quarter to set up a 26-yard field goal by Jamie Lindley.

"I did a few things right but there's lots of room for improvement," Wilson shrugged. "I'm just trying to learn my assignment and be where I'm supposed to be. That's what matters the most. As long as I learn the playbook, I'm going to start making plays."

Wilson's versatility is quickly making him a favorite of defensive coordinator Todd Grantham.

On Saturday, Wilson did just as he's done all spring, alternate between outside and inside.

"Ramik's a guy who can make plays for us and he made a few plays in the first half, which is a good sign," Grantham said of Wilson. "We kept him on that team (Red) because we wanted to play him both outside and inside. But we also put him there because that let us evaluate a couple of other guys against our No. 1 offense to see what they can do."

Wilson showed he can do a lot.

With the Red squad leading 7-3 following a 6-yard run by Ken Malcome, on the Black's very first play of its ensuing possession, LeMay felt pressure from Garrison Smith, causing an errant throw, right into the arms of Wilson.

But he wasn't satisfied with just picking off the pass. Instead, Wilson showed some excellent athletic ability, avoiding several would-be tacklers before he was dragged down at the 10.

"I was getting into my drop and Garrison Smith had a nice little get-of and tipped the ball," Wilson said. "I just jumped in front and tried to take it to the house."

Later in the quarter, Wilson got to LeMay again, this time for one of the defense's nine sacks on the afternoon.

"(Grantham) threw a few things out there today," Wilson said. "Anytime we're out there we're going to play Georgia defense. We've got nothing to hide."

For Wilson, it was just good to be back on the field.

Earlier this spring, he missed some time due to the death of his father. Although that pain still lingers today, Wilson said his dad would be proud of the way his career seems to be progressing.

Although the Bulldogs' defense is about to be joined by freshman linebackers Josh Harvey-Clemons, Jordan Jenkins and Josh Dawson, Wilson has shown that he won't have to take a back seat when the real battle for playing time commences in August.

Wilson's counting on his knowledge of the defense to ensure he'll be on the field come fall.

"With this defense, it's a lot to learn, but I've got a better idea of the playbook now," he said. "I pretty much know what I'm doing. It's just about playing fast now."