Georgia Bulldogs football head coach Kirby Smart is looking to cap off a third straight undefeated regular season on Saturday against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. Georgia Tech is 6-5 this season and will play in its first bowl game since 2018 this postseason.
Georgia Tech head coach Brent Key is 10-9 in his first year-and-a-half at the helm. Key has upgraded Georgia Tech’s roster and helped the Yellow Jackets pick up a dramatic win over Miami and a big win over North Carolina.
Georgia football has an extensive injury list heading into the Georgia Tech game. The Bulldogs continue to roll, but are hoping to get healthier ahead of the SEC championship.
What did Georgia coach Kirby Smart have to say ahead of the Georgia Tech game?
Ladd McConkey injury update
Kirby Smart clarified that Ladd McConkey’s ankle injury would not require TightRope surgery. McConkey missed the Tennessee game.
Ladd got a tweaked ankle that he tweaked in the game here at home. He was able to go some at the end of the week but didn’t practice much. It bothered him a little bit Saturday, but nothing any more severe than that. We’ve done MRIs since the game and doing even more testing, but feel good that he’s going to be able to return.
On Georgia Tech quarterback Haynes King
Georgia Tech quarterback Haynes King has thrown for 2,597 passing yards this season, which is already fourth in Georgia Tech history. King has great mobility and is Tech’s second-leading rusher.
Haynes King is like that. He’s fast. He’s athletic. We’ve got several coaches that came from the Texas area that talked about his athleticism in high school, and you see it on tape. Buster’s done an unbelievable job with him, and he utilizes his entire skill set.
Rara Thomas injury update
Georgia wide receiver Rara Thomas missed the Tennessee game with a foot injury. Kirby Smart notes that Thomas suffered a foot sprain.
Yeah, Rara (Thomas) has a foot sprain. We don’t know the severity of it. It’s really probably better listed as a bone bruise on his foot. I think he’s going to be okay. We don’t know yet. We’ll see here during the week if he’s ever able to go.
Warren Brinson injury update
The Georgia defense was without defensive tackle Warren Brinson against Tennessee. The Bulldogs are hoping Brinson’s calf injury can heal up ahead of Georgia Tech or the SEC championship.
And Warren (Brinson) had the calf strain. Yeah, we wanted him to get rehab and stay here and get well, and hopefully he’s able to go today.
On Georgia quarterback Carson Beck’s consistent play
Georgia quarterback Carson Beck has throw for at least 250 yards in every game this year and has yet to throw more than one interception in a game all season. Beck has 21 touchdown passes and five interceptions.
Protection, scheme, hard work on his part. That’s probably it. Protection, scheme, hard work on his part, watching tape, and really good skill player play.
On former UGA receiver Dominick Blaylock
Wide receiver Dominick Blaylock transferred to Georgia Tech this offseason. Blaylock is Georgia Tech’s third-leading receiver. The former Bulldog has 21 receptions for 337 receiving yards and two touchdowns this season.
Selflessness is probably the number one thing that stands out. Toughness. He’s such a great competitor… He made some really, really big, critical plays for us over the years, in terms of the stretch run. Going back to his freshman year, touchdown catches, all the way to last year, making plays. He’s just very dependable.
Positive update on Georgia guard Tate Ratledge
Kirby Smart notes that Tate Ratledge’s knee injury against Tennessee was just a bone bruise, which is not too brutal for Ratledge.
Tate (Ratledge’s) good. Tate has a bone bruise. He banged knees like we thought. He was sore yesterday and is sore today, limping around, but no structural damage, which is good. Will be just a timetable of how long it takes to turn around.
On facing former Georgia quality control coach Buster Faulkner
Former Georgia quality control and quarterbacks coach Buster Faulkner is now the offensive coordinator and tight ends coach at Georgia Tech. Faulkner and Haynes King are a big reason why the Yellow Jackets have a much more proficient passing attack this year.
(Buster Faulkner’s) done a phenomenal job. He would be the first to tell you that it’s not he who gets all the credit… Buster’s done really well offensively everywhere he’s been. Statistically, the reason he came here is he wanted to get an opportunity at a bigger Power Five school.
Kirby Smart gives Faulkner some credit for Georgia’s offensive success from 2020-2022 including developing Stetson Bennett.
I think he and Mike (Bobo) both played a major support role for Todd (Monken) last year… He played a key part in helping Coach Monken with Stetson in terms of developing him.
Injury updates on Jamon Dumas-Johnson and Julian Humphrey
Jamon Dumas-Johnson went down with a fractured forearm against Missouri. Julian Humphrey suffered an upper body injury against Ole Miss. Both players have not returned to the field yet.
Both those guys are fighting to get back. They’re week to week and trying to get back as soon as they can.
On Georgia Tech’s running game
Georgia Tech running back Jamal Haynes has 850 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns this season to lead the Yellow Jackets. Quarterback Haynes King also has contributed a lot to the ground game. King has 624 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns.
These guys know how to run the football now. They are really good at running the football. They find best runs available, scheme runs, quarterback runs, unbalanced runs, good backs, really tough O-line.
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