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Video/Transcript: Kirby Smart Presser – October 24, 2023
On how practice has been this week…
“It’s good. It’s a little slow with the warm fuzzies we call them yesterday. It was nearly gone. Three days, I guess Friday, Saturday, Sunday without the pads popping so it was a little slow to get going yesterday, but I thought they were better today. They’ve had good, good energy, good spirits. I think they really respect this rivalry, and you know, we’ve got quite a few kids from the state of Florida. They take a lot of pride in going back down to Jacksonville to play and they seem excited. So they had good energy.”
On Florida’s development under head coach Billy Napier…
“I think they’ve recruited well, and we recruit against them. They recruited well and they recruit hard. They have good schemes. They have good coaches. They have great facilities and a great organization. When you have that recipe, it’s just a matter of time. You build it through hard work and discipline, and you can see that in his players. You can see those guys playing with toughness and discipline. Their brand of football is very respectable. They play a lot of the same similar schemes, defensively and offensively to what we do and the things you believe in. So I got a lot of respect for Billy and the job he’s done and I have no doubt that he’s going to do a great job.”
On Julian Humphrey’s confidence and development…
“Yeah, he’s gotten a lot of work. Like I said in the last three to four weeks of practices, he’s gotten a tremendous amount. Probably 60 to 70% of his reps have come with the ones and he gets a lot of work in there with those guys, and he gets better. He used to go against better competition doing that. I think that’s great for his development. He’s a talented football player. He’s got really good speed, good football instincts and plays the ball well in the air.”
On previous experiences with Austin Armstrong, Russ Callaway and other current Florida staff members…
“Yeah, I worked with a lot of those guys on their staff. I think they’re really good coaches. They have a great pedigree, and they work really hard at what they do. I have a lot of respect for Russ and his family. Coach Callaway was here when I first got hired, and Russ is a tremendous coach who knows football inside and out and he was a great husband and father as well. Then Austin was here with us, and he was a really good idea guy. Always looking for a better way to do things. He didn’t feel limited by his role. He wasn’t afraid to speak up and have good ideas, which I think makes a good young coach when you when you think that way.”
On Xavier Truss and Amarius Mims’ workloads this week…
“Both guys have been able to take some reps and work. Xavier probably ahead of Mims, which is what we expected, but I was really pleased with Mims. He pushed really hard today and got out there, got some work in and Truss has been out there both days.”
On how to adjust defensively against Florida’s pistol formation…
“Well, it depends on a lot of things. The call number one, the rest of the formation because the pistol part of it doesn’t necessarily set the strength. The formation does a lot of times, and they change the strength motion a lot. They shift a lot and have a lot of window dressing on plays and set plays up with that. We don’t worry about the setting of the strength based on the back as much as we do other things.”
On what he’s seen from Kamari Lassiter this season…
“Leadership. He’s a kid that’s been committed to excellence his whole life. He comes from a great family background and a really tough, hardworking family. He kind of came up through the mud man. He didn’t get anything given to him, was not a super highly recruited guy, and he’s made himself into a really good player through work ethic. Like he just won’t be outworked, he won’t be outcompeted, and you love that about a football player.”
On what he’s seen from Marvin Jones Jr. and Damon Wilson Jr. during the bye week…
“Well, I think they are in two different spots. Like Marvin is a year into the system so he understands it really well. He can play Sam, Jack, could probably play off the ball back or two if he had too. He’s got very good instincts and has gotten physically stronger and tougher. He’s had two weird deals where he has missed games due to injuries. Other than that, he’s been really consistent. Damon is younger and has shown great promise. I mean, he’s a player that has ascended in the last two to three weeks in our eyes because he’s worked so hard. I mean, he’s down there on the scout team and they’re coming in every day being like ‘Damon is playing so hard down there.’ He’s given so much effort and he’s given us a great look that you know, we rewarded him and played him more against Vandy because of the work that he did. He continued that into the off week and this week, so he’s doing a good job.”
On his opinion with stealing signs in game…
“Are you referencing the going to people’s games? Or are you talking about within our games? I’ve never heard of anybody going to the games to watch and film and do all the stuff that’s going on that everybody is talking about. I don’t know anybody that’s ever done that, or I’ve never been asked to do that as a young coach or known anybody to do that. I’ve never heard of that. In high school football, you know, I grew up with my dad and we would go watch other teams play. That was part of what you did. You didn’t watch your team play. You sat out there with four other coaches and you drew up their plays while they were doing it. You know, that was pre-cell phone and probably pre-signals because they were sending people in with them. The coach would send them in for signals but that was a long time ago. As far as in game? I think people try to do that. It tries to go on. As a signal caller, when I had call defenses, it confused me. If I had to sit there and try to wait on somebody to tell me what they thought they got and I’m trying to think about what the best call for the situation is. You’re relying on misinformation or something that’s not very reliable, so I don’t know. There are times that people have said they’ve had our signals in game, and you know, they knew this or that. You talk to the team that you played last and sometimes when you’re not going to play that team again, they share what they might have had on you and things like that. I’ve heard of it in game, but a lot of times you can know the signal still not do it right. It’s kind of the joke we have, you know what plays come in and you mess it up. I’ve laughed with coaches about that before.”
On if he was aware if Michigan had done any scouting on Georgia’s play call signals…
“No, I didn’t notice anything or know anything. Nobody we talked to warned us or any of that. I think everybody we play they say, ‘They steal your signals.’ We play somebody and they are always like, ‘They are good at stealing your signals.’ But what they’re referencing is different from stealing them. They’re coming, they’re talking about people coming to film them. That’s completely different. We’ve tried to hide the signals, hold the calls, put signs up, do all that. There’s nothing I remember about the Michigan game that makes me think that.”
On Arian Smith’s development this season…
“You know Arian probably had more opportunities earlier in the year as we were down on wide outs for a couple of games. We had a guy in, a guy out, a guy injured. Ladd’s been injured. He’s played a lot of the same spots as Ladd, and for whatever reason, he probably hasn’t had as many opportunities lately. He’s had some opportunities where he didn’t capitalize on it, and he’d be the first to tell you that. I’m really proud of him and the role he’s played on our team in terms of leadership. He’s taken ownership in some special teams units. He’s been elite at gunner, and he’s part of the reason that we have not given up many return yards. He’s been a big, major factor in that. He’s worked really hard after practice on developing as a wide out.”
On Darris Smith…
“Yeah, it’s the same as we have talked about before. He’s not with us right now.”
On the idea of a challenge system rather than a play review system…
“What would be the advantage of a challenge system? Now, it’s on me. So, you are going to criticize me, and I got to make the call. You can’t criticize now because they review every play. It’s more accurate. 100-percent it slows it down, it slows down the game. That argument is correct. The flip side of that for the coaches is you want me to decide. You want me to decide when I do it, and you want me to burn one of my timeouts. And I don’t have the same information that you have. They have the information up there. They have the ability to review every play. Now, should they review every play? A one-yard spot in the first quarter for five minutes. They give us the number. It’s 53-second average review time. Is it worth that for one yard? Probably not. But, if you’re telling me I have to go throw the flag or not, like the NFL does it every time, I don’t know. It would definitely speed the game up to not review, but you would have a lot of controversy after the game, is what you would have. Theirs get reviewed for the critical plays – inside two minutes, scoring plays, all those things. Once you add all those things in, every turnover, it’s kind of like they’re reviewing the ones anyways. Then it gets off a challenge flag. It just keeps us from having to review, I don’t want to say things that aren’t relevant, but things that might not affect the outcome of the game.”
On what Florida’s offense does well…
“They run the ball really well. They have great backs. They have a quarterback who is extremely hot and accurate. He knows exactly what he is doing in the system, and he knows how to do it. They’ve got their tight ends involved in the last couple weeks, and they’ve done a great job with that. They block physical on the perimeter. They take shots down the field that are set up through their play action, and they spread you out and do a really nice job. So, it’s a complete offense. It’s not like, ‘Oh, if we take this away, they are one-dimensional.’ They have good wide outs. They have a really big offensive line. They got a quarterback that really understands that if this is not there, I’m doing this. And he can run. So, they’re a really complete offense, and they’re very methodical. It’s not like they are sitting out there on 100 miles per hour. They go in there, and they execute it.”
On if having a consistent bye week every year provides consistency for the program…
“I don’t see how it can provide an advantage because you know when your bye is. I think everybody kind of knows when their bye is. You know, the years I was at Alabama, it was before LSU. It’s not an advantage. You might argue it’s in advantage if you have a bye and someone you are playing doesn’t. I’ve had that strategy before, but you could also say you lose rhythm. You worry about your guys getting out of shape because they are taking a break over that weekend. You get your legs back, but you also have maybe six guys coming in overweight. That can be detriment to the rhythm of your team. I don’t put a lot of thought into where the bye falls because I don’t have a lot of control over it.”
Video/Transcript: Kamari Lassiter and Jamon Dumas-Johnson Interviews – October 24, 2023
On his overall take on the Georgia-Florida rivalry and what it means to both programs…
“This is huge. Georgia-Florida has been a rivalry for as long as I can remember at all age groups. I remember when I was in middle school, we played a Georgia-Florida game and it was a big rivalry, so this goes back all the way to then for me. Every year for both teams, this is one of the games that is circled on each one of our schedules. It means a lot to both teams.”
On how much he prides himself on his tackling ability and physicality…
“That’s something that when I first starting playing football for the Savannah Stars, that was something that they instilled in me at a young age, so I’ve always liked being physical. I used to get kicked out of recess for tackling too hard, so things like that, that’s just always been a part of me.”
On the defense’s excitement level to play a game coming off the bye week…
“Coming off a bye is really good for mental mistakes and for your bodies and getting rest and recovery, but we just love playing football. Every week I look forward to playing a game, so it kind of bums me out whenever we don’t have a game. So just being able to go back out there in an atmosphere like this, 50-50 in Jacksonville playing against a big SEC opponent, it doesn’t get much better.”
On Florida’s running backs…
“Their running backs are a big key to their offense. #2 [Montrell Johnson Jr.] and #7 [Trevor Etienne] run the ball really hard. They’re physical backs. They know how to break tackles. They know how to lean for it. They’re a big piece of the offense. They go through them.”
On the Georgia-Florida rivalry…
“Kirby emphasizes that it’s going to be a physical game. They’re just like us between the sidelines. Ultimately, they have some coaches who have been here, and they preach the same things we preach – physicality, details, things of that nature.”
On the similarities between Georgia and Florida…
“Their running game is very physical. They have good backs; we have good backs. We probably have three; they have two. Their line does a great job of pushing and getting off the ball. They have big linemen; we have big linemen. The physicality of the two teams.”
On the pressure of keeping the win streak alive…
“We don’t even think about that. We play game by game. We have a long week to prepare for the game so to think about a streak like that, it doesn’t even come across our minds.”
Dawgs in the NFL – Week 7
Over 30 former Georgia Bulldogs were in action across the National Football League this past weekend. George Pickens and James Cook were major contributors to their teams’ offensive outputs in week seven, with both recording over 100 yards from scrimmage. On the defensive side of the ball, five different players (Lorenzo Carter, Jalen Carter, Jonathan Ledbetter, Jordan Davis, and Nolan Smith) contributed a sack or tackle for loss.
Jaguars 31, Saints 24
Tyson Campbell, CB – Was inactive for the Jaguars due to a hamstring injury.
Travon Walker, OLB – Started at defensive end for the Jaguars recording one total tackle.
Ravens 38, Lions 6
Ben Cleveland, OG – Served in a reserve offensive line role for the Ravens playing four total snaps in the win.
Roquan Smith, ILB – Started at inside linebacker for the Ravens while recording eight total tackles and one defended pass. With the defended pass on Sunday, Smith has recorded a defended pass in four out of his last five games he’s played. Smith also currently has the fourth most tackles in the league with 71.
Bears 30, Raiders 12
John Jenkins, NT – Started at defensive end for Las Vegas, posting four tackles playing in 49 defensive snaps.
Zamir White, RB – Appeared as a reserve running back for 14 offensive snaps for the Raiders, posting two yards in two rushing attempts and three receptions for 26 yards.
Christopher Smith II, S – Saw action in 18 special teams plays for Las Vegas, recording no statistics.
Browns 39, Colts 38
Isaiah McKenzie, WR – Played nine total snaps for the Colts offense, recording no statistics.
Patriots 29, Bills 25
David Andrews, OC – Started at center for the Patriots as they gained 364 yards on offense.
James Cook, RB – Played 52 percent of offensive snaps for the Bills’ offense, carrying the ball 13 times for 56 yards to go along with three catches for 46 yards and a touchdown. That marks 100 or more scrimmage yards for Cook in five of his last six total games, and 100 scrimmage yards in four of his last five games on the road. This is also Cook’s marks the second time in as many trips to Gillette Stadium that Cook has recorded 100 or more scrimmage yards.
Leonard Floyd, OLB – Started at defensive end for the Bills but recorded no statistics in the loss.
Giants 14, Commanders 7
Andrew Thomas, OT – Was listed as not active for New York during its week seven win (hamstring).
Falcons 16, Buccaneers 13
Lorenzo Carter, OLB – Appeared in a reserve linebacker role for Atlanta, totaling two tackles, including a sack for four yards, seeing action in 23 defensive snaps.
John Fitzpatrick, TE – Was listed as not active for Atlanta during its week seven win.
Jake Camarda, P – Had three punts for the Buccaneers, totaling 144 yards with a long of 52 yards.
Steelers 24, Rams 17
Broderick Jones, OT – Served in a reserve offensive line role for the Steelers, playing zero snaps.
George Pickens, WR – Started at wide receiver for the Steelers, catching five passes for 107 yards in the win. Pickens now has 70+ receiving yards in four of his past five games and his second in a row with over 100 receiving yards.
Darnell Washington, TE – Played 53 percent of snaps for the Steelers on Sunday, recording no statistics.
Matthew Stafford, QB – Started at quarterback for the Rams in the loss, completing 14 of his 29 passes with one touchdown. Stafford threw for 231 passing yards on Sunday, putting him over 1,000 total passing yards in career matchups versus the Steelers.
Derion Kendrick, CB – Played 36 percent of defensive snaps for the Rams, recording no statistics.
Warren McClendon Jr., OT – Inactive for the Rams due to a coach’s decision.
Seahawks 20, Cardinals 10
Jonathan Ledbetter, DT – Started at defensive tackle for the Cardinals on Sunday, recording four tackles, half a sack, and one quarterback hit.
Broncos 19, Packers 17
Quay Walker, ILB – Started at inside linebacker for the Packers, playing 100 percent of their defensive snaps while recording five total tackles.
Devonte Wyatt, DE – Played 10 snaps on defense for the Packers, recording two tackles before exiting with a knee injury.
Eric Stokes, CB – Played zero snaps on defense for the Packers before exiting with a hamstring injury.
Chiefs 31, Chargers 17
Tre’ McKitty, TE – Inactive for the Chargers due to a coach’s decision.
Jamaree Salyer, OT/OG – Started at right guard for the Chargers as they gained 358 yards on offense.
Malik Herring, DE – Inactive for the Chiefs due to a coach’s decision.
Eagles 31, Dolphins 17
Jalen Carter, DT – Saw action in a reserve role for Philadelphia, totaling one tackle for loss in 19 defensive snaps.
Jordan Davis, NT – Appeared as a backup tackle for Philadelphia, earning two tackles, including credit for half of a sack for a yard, in 57 percent of the team’s defensive snaps.
Nakobe Dean, ILB – Started for the Eagles, recording three tackles in their week seven win.
Kelee Ringo, CB – Appeared as a reserve cornerback for the Eagles, recording a tackle while on special teams, where he saw action in 17 snaps.
Nolan Smith, OLB – Saw action as a reserve linebacker, recording a sack for two yards and an additional tackle on special teams for Philadelphia.
D’Andre Swift, RB – Started at running back for the Eagles, rushing 62 yards on 15 attempts and also catching three passes for 13 yards.
Channing Tindall, ILB – Appeared in nine special teams plays for Miami, recording no statistics.
Isaiah Wynn, OT, OG – Started at left guard for the Dolphins but was injured midway through the first quarter and did not return to action.
Vikings 22, 49ers 17
Lewis Cine, S – Was listed as not active for the Vikings.
Charlie Woerner, TE – Started for San Francisco, recording an assisted tackle on special teams.
Chris Conley, WR – Appeared as a reserve wide receiver for the 49ers, recording no statistics.
Falcons: Justin Shaffer, OL
Buccaneers: Richard Lecounte III, S
Commanders: Jake Fromm, QB
Chargers: Mark Webb, DB
Reserve Lists (IR, PUP, NFI)
Seahawks: Kenny McIntosh, RB
49ers: Robert Beal Jr., DE
Ravens: Nick Moore, LS
Rams: Stetson Bennett, QB
Titans: Kearis Jackson, WR/PR
Browns: Nick Chubb, RB
Giants: Azeez Ojulari, OLB
WTennis: Mell Reasco Advances at the 2023 Pan American Games
Representing Ecuador in the 2023 Pan American Games, junior Mell Reasco opened up her first match of the competition with a 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 victory over Leyla Britez-Risso (Paraguay) on the Grandstand court on Monday to advance to the singles round of 16.
Playing as the No. 15 seed in the competition, Reasco received a bye in the round of 64 as she prepared to see first action in the round of 32 against Britez-Risso.
In the first set, Reasco kept a stable pace early on before Britez-Risso secured a break point to take the lead. Reasco produced a late effort to close the deficit but fell 6-3 to trail by one set.
The second set provided a much stronger start for Reasco as she quickly took advantage with a couple of break points to go out in front. Closing in on set point, Reasco wasted no time as she bounced back with a dominant 6-2 second set to level the match at 1-1.
In the third set, both sides picked up the pace on a back-and-forth start as Reasco pulled in front early. Fighting to get back in the match, Britez-Risso produced a late effort to trail 5-4 but Reasco closed out the final game to win the match 3-6, 6-2, 6-4.
Reasco will now face the winner of No. 4 seed Julia Riera (Argentina) and Natalie Espinal (Honduras) in the round of 16 set to begin on Wednesday.
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