Barking Dawgs: UGA quotes of the week


ATHENS, Ga. -- As the No. 5 Georgia Bulldogs (4-0, 2-0 SEC) prepare for a key SEC East game against Tennessee (3-1, 0-1) on Saturday, here is a selection of quotes from the Bulldogs’ coaches and players from throughout the week:

“I think Derek’s an excellent coach. I think he’s a guy that, given the opportunity, will turn that thing around because if you compare the players that they have there now to before, it’s really night and day. I think he’s cleaned up a lot that was left over and I think offensively, they’ve got a really good system. They’ve got some skill guys that are going to play in the league. They’ve got a tight end that can play in the league. Their quarterback will be in the league. They’ve got NFL players and they’ve got some talent. We’ll have to prepare and be ready to play because I think they’ve done a good job.” -- Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham on facing Derek Dooley and Tennessee on Saturday

“Two years ago I wasn’t even looking at the defense. I was just so focused on getting the snap and going through my progressions. Now I’m able to see the defense and start picking up tendencies during the week, during the game and able to focus in on exactly what I’m doing and I think that’s why my decisions have been faster. I know where I’m going and making more plays.” -- Third-year starting quarterback Aaron Murray on how experience has helped him settle down and read defenses before taking a snap

“I thought it was definitely our unit’s best game against Vandy. We were able to run the ball and throw the ball and he definitely did have a good game. We need everyone to keep having good games for this stretch we’re about to hit.” -- Center David Andrews on the improved play of the offensive line

“[Todd Gurley] is blessed physically and he puts a lot of work into it. I’ve said it all along, both of those guys [Gurley and Keith Marshall] are conscientious and know what they’re doing. We’ve had very few missed assignments from that position, Todd included, and Ken [Malcome] has done a nice job, too, where we’re not having to say, ‘Which back’s in there? He can’t do this. He can’t do that.’ We’re able to pretty much call the offense, and that’s a credit to those guys getting ready to play and Coach [Bryan] McClendon getting them ready to play each and every week.” -- Offensive coordinator Mike Bobo on the effective play of Georgia’s tailbacks

“He has the ability to outrun people, as well. That’s one thing is guys don’t like to hit him and they go at an angle they don’t want to take at full force because he will run you over. He runs with his head down and that’s hard for guys, especially when you’re coming from 10 yards back at safety. They don’t want to hit him, so you’ve got to bring your all when you come with those guys.” -- Linebacker Christian Robinson on Gurley’s physical running style

“That’s people just writing us off just because our best players are gone, but we know that we’re great players, too, and we can get it done. So yeah, we take that personal and play with a little chip on our shoulder.” -- Wideout Michael Bennett on critics saying Georgia’s receiving corps was subpar when A.J. Green went pro after the 2010 season and when Malcolm Mitchell shifted to cornerback before this season

“The balancing act between preparing guys to play the game and do well in the game, and then keeping guys continuing to develop that maybe weren’t playing for whatever reason, that’s been the challenge. I think that everybody’s done a pretty good job with it and we’ll continue to just work guys and develop guys and play the best guys that are available.” -- Grantham on the juggling act between preparing active players to play on a given week during the season and also keeping suspended players like Bacarri Rambo and Alec Ogletree sharp with practice reps

“I really have tried to be more verbal in my leadership. One thing I’ve always tried to do is lead by example with effort and just trying to do stuff the right way. But I feel like a lot of the guys kind of look to me a little bit as far as leadership and I feel like Coach [Will] Friend even looks to me to try to lead the guys. But I feel like all of us have leadership qualities in itself. We don’t have one guy that we’re really all behind, we’re kind of feeding off each other.” -- Right guard Chris Burnette on his role on Georgia’s offensive line

“You can’t be a head case, which a lot of kickers are. That’s what messes them up. Say you do miss a big field goal in a game, within five minutes you need to forget about it even though that’s hard. You’ll hear all about it after from fans and stuff, but you just need to try to forget about it. And with makes, too, you’ve got to forget about those so you don’t get too blown up in the head.” -- Freshman kicker Marshall Morgan on the mental demands of his position