Georgia Bulldogs: Dexter Morant

Morant leaves UGA program

February, 4, 2013
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ATHENS, Ga. -- Georgia’s 2010 football recruiting class has suffered further attrition now that outside linebacker Dexter Morant left the team.

UGA sports information director Claude Felton confirmed on Monday morning that Morant has “left the university due to academic considerations.”

Morant is officially the eighth member of Georgia’s 19-man 2010 signing class -- joining tailback Ken Malcome, safety Jakar Hamilton, cornerback Derek Owens, linebacker Demetre Baker, offensive lineman Brent Benedict, defensive end Jalen Fields and receiver Lonnie Outlaw -- who either failed to qualify academically, transferred or who has been dismissed outright. Meanwhile, offensive lineman Kolton Houston has yet to play in a game and linebacker Brandon Burrows made a limited college debut just last fall.

ESPN rated Morant as a three-star prospect and the nation’s No. 75 defensive end when he signed with the Bulldogs. However, he was frequently set back by injuries at Georgia and never actually appeared in a game in three seasons.

Morant quit the team minutes before his first practice in 2010, with Coach Mark Richt reporting that he “just felt like he lost the desire to play.” He returned to the team four days later.

Grantham: Bye week restored continuity

October, 16, 2012
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Todd GranthamAP Photo/Paul AbellGeorgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham used the bye week to work on his defense's on-field communication.
ATHENS, Ga. -- Georgia’s coaching staff has been careful to avoid making excuses for any underperformances up to and including the Bulldogs’ most recent game, where they suffered their first loss of the season against South Carolina.

But defensive coordinator Todd Grantham clearly is relieved to have had last week’s open date to evaluate the miscommunications and misplays that helped opposing offenses accumulate 13 “explosive plays” -- which he defines as any play that covered 24 or more yards -- in the first half of the season.

“We basically had three objectives in the bye week,” Grantham said after Tuesday’s practice. “No. 1 is we had to get some guys healthy. No. 2 is we wanted to get some continuity with the guys that we have available right now. And then the last thing is we took a look at each individual player and said, ‘Here are the things you’ve got to do to improve to make our team better. And if you do that and take a team attitude, we’ll be better.’

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ATHENS, Ga. -- Georgia coach Mark Richt confirmed after Friday’s practice that true freshman quarterback Faton Bauta is likely in line for a redshirt season this fall.

Bauta is the newcomer in a deep group of quarterbacks that includes All-SEC starter Aaron Murray, junior Hutson Mason, redshirt freshman Christian LeMay and walk-on Parker Welch, so the incoming freshman has not been getting many practice reps this preseason.

“It’s just a matter of learning, and sometimes it is harder to learn when you’re trying to learn with a [small] amount of opportunities,” Richt said. “But we’re not expecting him to have to play for us this year. More than likely he’ll redshirt.”
ATHENS, Ga. -- Georgia’s staff didn’t waste any time trying to forge a bond between the new kicker-punter tandem to replace Blair Walsh and Drew Butler.

When freshman kicker Marshall Morgan and punter Collin Barber arrived on campus this summer, they roomed together on campus and struck a fast friendship.

“Me and Marshall have become really good friends,” Barber said after Thursday’s practice. “We’ve roomed together and we see each other every day and depend on each other. We’ve gotten to where we can depend on each other and hold each other accountable.”

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ATHENS, Ga. -- Georgia is clearly counting on freshman offensive lineman John Theus to contribute immediately, so it helps that the Bulldogs have an All-America pass rusher to go against him during preseason practice.

[+] EnlargeJohn Theus
Radi Nabulsi/ESPN.comVeteran linebacker Jarvis Jones says John Theus (above) isn't the only newcomer to garner his 'focused' attention.
Jarvis Jones, who led the SEC with 13.5 sacks last season, said he has already worked against Theus -- whom ESPN rated as the nation’s No. 5 offensive tackle prospect in the 2012 signing class -- “all the time” in the first six days of practice.

“I’m trying to make it my business to have him ready for Day 1 when we tee it off,” Jones said.

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Twenty-nine days remain until Georgia kicks off its season opener against Buffalo on Sept. 1. In the days counting down to the opener, DawgNation will profile, with our “Around the Hedges in 80 Days” series, a Bulldogs player we expect to make an impact. We will review each player’s career thus far and project his long-term potential as we progress through our alphabetical list, from center David Andrews to receiver Rantavious Wooten.

29. Dexter Morant
Sophomore, Outside linebacker
6-foot-7, 245 pounds



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videoIt has been two years and three surgeries since outside linebacker Dexter Morant saw the field. He is healthy and looking to show what he can do. DawgNation caught up with Morant to get the latest on his health, position changes and new jewelry.
To get ready for the start of Georgia’s spring football practice Tuesday, DawgNation will do a position breakdown each day and feature one player to watch at that position. Today we look at the defensive line and Garrison Smith.

ATHENS, Ga. -- Garrison Smith was a mostly unknown reserve before he introduced himself to Georgia’s fan base last fall with a standout performance against one of the Bulldogs’ biggest rivals.

Senior defensive end DeAngelo Tyson left with a season-ending ankle injury two plays into Georgia’s showdown with Georgia Tech, opening the door for Smith, a sophomore, to play a key role for the first time in his career.

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