If I were to ask you who you would consider being one of the best or better tacklers on defense for the Bulldogs going into the 2017 season, what name would pop into your head? Junior inside linebacker Roquan Smith would be one for a lot of fans and media. He led Georgia in tackles last season with 95. But after Roquan, whose name comes to mind? How about Tyrique McGhee?
That is what Kirby Smart said in his press conference on Monday previewing Georgia’s 2017 fall camp. You can find Coach Smart talking about McGhee on the attached video below at the 11:15 mark.
“Tyrique McGhee is a guy who is a really serious football player. I would put Tyrique up there as one of our best tacklers,” said Kirby Smart. “I learned a long time ago when you sign a young man from Peach County, he’s going to know how to tackle. They play tough, physical football, and Tyrique identifies that each day. We’re excited to have him. Tyrique is one of those guys that’s going to be in a big competition, who is going to replace Mo Smith at the nickel star is one of our biggest questions, and Tyrique is in the thick of that. But he’s also in the thick of corner and he also had the No. 1 special teams snaps of all our true freshman. So he’s a guy we’re really counting on for leadership.”
To be honest, McGhee was not who popped into my head when I asked myself that question. It was Aaron Davis or Natrez Patrick. The 5 foot 10 and 187 lbs sophomore cornerback from Byron, GA had 9 tackles a freshman last season, but he did show flashes of his potential. And, the Georgia coaching staff are looking to find a replacement for Mo Smith and Aaron Davis is a senior and will be gone after the 2017 season. McGhee could very well be a guy that assumes a similar role to A. Davis and M. Smith.
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