For Georgia redshirt sophomore wide receiver Kearis Jackson, last season is in the rearview. Jackson suffered a few minor setbacks that caused him not to play up to his full potential. However, now he’s just focused on becoming a leader in the new Bulldogs’ offense under first-year offensive coordinator Todd Monken.
Jackson met with reporters Wednesday evening to discuss what he’s seen so far.
“I must say, the offense, the receivers, quarterbacks and running backs, and line, we’ve done a great job up to this point learning the offense,” Jackson said on a Zoom call. “Guys are playing fast, we have everybody in the right position to make plays.”
He also elaborated on his his health and mindset going into camp.
“So far I know coming into camp, I was dealing with a few injuries and stuff but now I’m healthy, I’m 100 percent,” Jackson said. “My main goal coming into camp was to be a leader and just pull guys with me along because I know myself, and I know how it feels to be brought down. I want guys to be able to come in and work hard, play hard and play fast. This fall so far we’ve been doing that on offense and everything has gone pretty smooth.”
Georgia’s offense had a complete overhaul in the offseason with the hiring of Monken, who will be leading a unit that will feature a new starting quarterback, new running back and three new starters on the offensive line.
“Coach Monken, I love the way he’s breaking in the offense,” Jackson said. “He loves to see guys make plays. If you can make plays, you can play for him.”
Jackson has emerged as a leader and he’s a favorite to start in Georgia’s first game against Arkansas on Sept. 16. Although, he will have his work cut out for him because the Bulldogs return sophomore George Pickens, senior Demetris Robertson and junior Matt Landers. Incoming freshman Jermaine Burton and Marcus Rosemy have also impressed, and will be competing for immediate playing time as well.
But knowing the playbook will be a huge factor in terms of who gets a starting position. The offense is learning a completely new playbook and the receivers are having to learn new routes. They also will have to get their timing down, and build a rapport with each of the five scholarship quarterbacks, who are all competing for the starting job.
Jackson admitted that the Zoom meeting in the spring helped, but he wasn’t a big fan of them.
“I wasn’t too big of a fan of a Zoom, but I was able to learn and interact with Coach [Cortez] Hankton and Coach Monken on the Zoom, and build a bond since we weren’t able to do it this spring,” Jackson said. “I was on the there every day talking to my teammates, and reviewing. It wasn’t the same feeling as being in the same meeting room, but we had to bring that energy every day and be locked in.”
It seems like the Zoom video calls may have worked though as Georgia just finished up day three of practice.
“So far the whole offense has done a great job. It’s day three of practice and we’ve been doing a great job, especially with the volume of new offense we have that’s new to us,” Jackson said. “We’ve taken it pretty well by coming in and wanting to learn and wanting to get better. We’ve faced a little adversity by missing spring but now since we have it in front of us, it’s go time. It hasn’t been too much of a situation that’s become a big deal. Like I said though, we’ve done a great job in fall camp.”
Here is the video from Jackson’s interview: