Kevin Butler’s Players of the Week – Georgia vs. Auburn

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Kevin Butler’s Players of the Week – Georgia vs. Auburn

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Kevin Butler
Kevin Butler
[su_spacer size=”40″] Kevin Butler, former University of Georgia legendary kicker and a member of the Georgia radio broadcast team, will each week during the 2015 football season select his offensive, defensive and special teams players of the week for Bulldawg Illustrated. Here are Butler’s selections and reasons why for the Bulldogs’ 20-13 win over Auburn Saturday.
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[su_spacer size=”40″] Senior tackle John Theus, who was the ringleader of the Georgia offensive line that paved the way for Sony Michel, Brendan Douglas and Isaiah McKenzie to knock out the tough rushing yardage against a pumped-up Auburn defensive unit.
[su_spacer size=”40″] “The senior from Jacksonville, Fla. started his 30th consecutive game and the 45th in his career,” said Butler. “John has been a mainstay on the offensive line since he arrived at Georgia four years ago. This year has been a challenge for this offensive line but Saturday the boys in the tranches fought hard for 165 yards on the ground against an Auburn defense that has had its own challenges stopping the run this year. After the loss of Chubb, most defenses have shortened the field by packing the box and John has performed excellent the last three weeks. His leadership is so important for an offense that is still trying to create an identity for themselves 10 games into the season. Great job John … finish strong!”
[su_spacer size=”40″] DEFENSE
[su_spacer size=”40″] Junior outside linebacker Leonard Floyd, who helped spark a Bulldog defensive unit that allowed the Tiger offense only one touchdown − that coming on the very opening drive − and limited Auburn to just a field goal in the second half. Floyd totaled six tackles, had one sack, one tackle-for-loss and one quarterback hurry in bringing the pressure on Tiger QBs Jeremy Johnson and Sean White.
[su_spacer size=”40″] “During the phase of the season when we need the defense to dominate, Leonard Floyd stepped up against Auburn in a big way,” said Butler. “Floyd was a force Saturday in creating an edge and protecting it. Because of the QB problem Auburn is experiencing, the War Eagles have to establish the run and Floyd shut them down with 5 solo tackles and 1 assist with 1 sack for a loss. Floyd can be dominating against anyone when he wants to be, and for UGA to win the State Championship Leonard will need to be that kind of force from here on out.”
[su_spacer size=”40″] SPECIAL TEAMS
[su_spacer size=”40″] Sophomore kick returner/wide receiver Isaiah McKenzie, who broke the game open for the Bulldogs by returning a fourth quarter Auburn punt 53 yards for a touchdown. McKenzie, “The Human Joystick,” also rushed for 26 yards on just four carries, including the Bulldogs’ first TD on a 4-yard run, and added 15 yards on two receptions.
[su_spacer size=”40″] “What can you say about the record-setting sophomore?” said Butler. “Five career return TDs − 4 punt returns and 1 kickoff return − puts Isaiah in a class with some of the best returners in UGA history. Rosenberg and Boykin are two of the best and I think we are witnessing the best one yet in McKenzie. With two games to go in his sophomore year, I think you will see Isaiah break the record against Georgia Southern and also increase his offensive production with the ‘Wild Dog’ formation. Isaiah is special and the more we see him on specialty teams, the better UGA will be.”
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Murray Poole is a 1965 graduate of the University of Georgia Journalism School. He served as sports editor of The Brunswick News for 40 years and has written for Bulldawg Illustrated the past 16 years. He has covered the Georgia Bulldogs for 53 years.