Behind Florida Gators' Enemy Lines: Georgia Bulldogs QB Room Review

Zach Goodall

It's important to keep tabs on your biggest rivals.

There's no bigger rival to the Florida Gators than the Georgia Bulldogs, a long-time SEC East foe who has stood in head coach Dan Mullen's way of contending in the conference since he took the job prior to the 2018 season. Bulldogs head coach Kirby Smart has been an ace on the recruiting trail and built a roster that can compete with anybody.

However, the dividends haven't appeared to come together at the most important position in sports for Smart and his staff: Quarterback. Georgia shook the recruiting world on Thursday when former Southern California quarterback J.T. Daniels announced he will transfer to Athens.

Daniels is the third quarterback to announce his transfer to Georgia over the past seven months, following Wake Forest graduate transfer Jamie Newman who announced his pledge in January, and Nevada freshman Austin Kirksey who will walk on after relocating closer to home. 

Smart and his staff add these three transfers - Newman with immediate eligibility for one year and Daniels with three (he has to apply for an eligibility waiver to play in 2020) - coincides with Georgia signing 2020 quarterback Carson Beck, landing a commitment from top 2021 signal-caller Brock Vandagriff, and four quarterbacks with multiple years of eligibility remaining already on the roster.

New offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Todd Monken - tasked with installing his offense, which is more passing oriented and spread out as seen by his college and pro career - inherits an extremely crowded room that's been filled with storylines. All of which could have been drastically different had prized five-star quarterback signing Justin Fields not transferred from Georgia following his freshman season over a year ago. 

Fields became immediately eligible at Ohio State, and finished in third place for the Heisman Trophy as a sophomore, throwing for 3,272 yards, 41 touchdowns, and only three interceptions. He also added 484 yards and 10 scores on the ground. Hindsight is 20-20, of course, but Fields would be a perfect fit in Monken's system, who joined the staff in January.

But instead, Georgia finds itself scrambling to find stability in the quarterback room at perhaps no worse time amidst the coronavirus pandemic, which wiped out spring practice and threatens the upcoming season.

Former three-year starter Jake Fromm was solid during his career and went on to be drafted in the fifth round of this past NFL Draft by the Buffalo Bills, but the quarterback position appeared to hold Georgia back from being the most dominant team in college football. 

Smart needs improvement at the position in order to take the next step and win both national championships and consistent SEC championships. But, it's no sure thing that these quarterbacks will provide Georgia the improvement and stability that it's looking for either. 

Newman, 6-4, 230 lbs., is projected to start for Georgia this year after a productive redshirt junior season at Wake Forest, but is far from a polished passer. He offers mobility and strong passing velocity in the short field, but his intermediate-to-deep ball placement needs technique improvement as his footwork and follow-through have yet to be properly developed. 

The Bulldogs were banking on Newman making these improvements under Monken in spring camp and other practice situations, but the coronavirus has removed those in-person opportunities for now.

Daniels suffered a season-ending injury in Southern California's season-opening game in 2019, and elected to transfer following the emergence of true freshman Kedon Slovis, who threw for 30 touchdowns after being thrown into action. Daniels earned the Trojans' starting role as a true freshman in 2018, completing 59.5% of his passes for 2,672 yards, 14 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions.

It could be in Georgia's best interest to not rush Daniels' return to the field by applying for a waiver, and allowing him to continue to heal and learn the offense while Newman, Beck, and others carry the load this season. Then, Daniels could compete for the job in 2021, with Beck, Vandagriff, and/or whoever remains in the room as it is obviously fluid.

A combination of factors, some controllable and others far from it, have created an interesting situation for Smart, Monken, and the Georgia Bulldogs quarterback room. It's hard to believe the drama is over, and should football pick back up and a 2020 season go on as planned, Georgia's quarterback situation will be one to monitor.

With eight quarterbacks set to be on the roster immediately and into the future, you'd figure a formidable option will emerge. But that is far from certain at this point.

Comments (10)
No. 1-5
KingNegan
KingNegan

@GatprJohn .............Friction in the QB room? I doubt it. It sounds like to me that Emory Jones has friction. But oh well. If there is a little. So what??? Clemson always has a great QB room. They have players waiting there turn. So why not UGA? I mean 1 5 star QB transfers and people go wacky!!!! Well 2 counting Jacob Eason. But it happens. WERE WE SUPPOSED TO BENCH A 5 STAR QB. THAT TOOK US TO THE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME, NAMED FROMM? Nobody does that. He proved he could do it in his TRUE FRESHMEN SEASON!!!!!!! Eason was the starter until he got hurt. But he was looking bad and from looked better!!!!

  Same goes for Justin Fields. Jake Fromm beat him out fair and square. I WAS AT THE SPRING GAME!!!! Jake was better in warm-ups. Jake was just better overall in PRACTICES!!!!!  Fields shined some in the spring game. But Jake won it fair and square!!!!!   JUSTIN FIELDS TRANSFERRED BECAUSE OF A RACIST LIE. SPREAD BY A GIRL WITH CONNECTIONS TO NICK SABAN AND ALABAMA!!!!    Yet when he was asked in court or wherever. He said. " THERE IS NO RACISM AT GEORGIA. " He was right. It was ALL A LIE!!!!!  And the girl also practices WITCHCRAFT AND VOODOO!!!! SHE IS KIN TO A VOODOO PRIEST. THAT RIPS PEOPLE OFF BY SELLING VOODOO SPELLS!!!!!!  THINK SHE WOULDN'T SELL LIES????? SHE WOULD AND SHE DID!!!!

    The witch's name is AFRICA BUGGS!!!!!!!  If her last name seems familiar . It's because it is. ISAIAH BUGGS WHO IS KIN TO HER PLAYED FOR ALABAMA AND NICK SABAN. THE SAME YEAR THE LIE WAS SPREAD!!!!!  TO THIS VERY DAY. SHE HAS YET TO SHOW ANY REAL EVIDENCE TO PROVE HER LIE!!!!!  Because of that witch a great baseball player lost his scholarship. And Justin Fields used it to transfer and get a waiver!!!!  MAYBE HE WAS IN ON IT TO??? SHE WORE HIS JERSEY NUMBER AND NAME!!!!  I think her and possibly JF were in on it along with NICK SABAN WHO PROBABLY PAID HER!!!!!!!  Either way. GOOD RIDDANCE!!!!!  But if any TRUE GEORGIA FANS still talk to Africa Buggs. I personally think you should tell her bye bye!!!!!!  She is NOT a good person!!!!!

 AFRICA BUGGS is is a LIAR and a proven Witch!!!!!!  But if you know her.  I say, don't trust her ever again!  # WITCH and # LIAR FOR HIRE!!!!!!!

                          KN
KingNegan
KingNegan

Speaking of leaving. HUGE, BIG-TIME NEWS about to break! In regards to 3 Florida recruits as well as Emory Jones!!!!! 3 MAJOR FLORIDA RECRUITS ARE IN SERIOUS TALKS WITH KIRBY SMART!!!! Huge news of FLIPS coming!!!!

    Plus regarding Emory Jones. There has always been speculation that he is bound for the TRANSFER PORTAL!!!!! But now it gets even better. One-time big-time college football power FSU is on the comeback trail. Many feel they are only a QB away from challenging in the weak ACC!!!!   There are RUMORS, and WHISPERS regarding EMORY JONES TO FSU AS THE STARTING QB!!!!!!

   If this move takes place. I for one wouldn't blame him. So far it's only buzz on the dark web. But a onetime 5 star QB. Should not be reduced to sitting on the bench. Behind KYLE TRASK. When Trask couldn't even start on his own HIGH SCHOOL TEAM!!!!!  Not to mention FSU has historically been a better brand of football in Florida!!!!  Florida has always been LITTLE BROTHER so to speak to FSU!!!! It's easy to see why Jones might want to be their starting QB!!!

  Plus, even the MIAMI HURRICANES are in need of a strong starter!!!! The word on the dark web is. That EMORY JONES basically has his pick of where to go to school. The word is out. EMORY JONES IS FED UP WITH PROMISES!!!  He is doing a little shopping.  THE ANNOUNCEMENT ON THE TRANSFER PORTAL COULD BE JUST AROUND THE CORNER!!!!!  But for now it's been HUSH HUSH for obvious reasons!!!

       BIG NEWS AND EMORY JONES 

Florida could be in for a hurricane of DE-COMMITMENTS and huge transfer news very soon!!!!! Recruits and current players. Just don't feel Florida is moving up!!! Jones feels that LAST SEASON was their best shot. He feels that DAN MULLEN DROPPED THE BALL SEVERAL TIMES VS UGA. But he points out the 4th and 1 play. When Mullen called a pass. He feels that. HE SHOULD HAVE BEEN PUT IN THE GAME!!!! He is probably correct. But hindsight is 2020!!!!! He also feels. That riding the bench and playing only in trash times. Might have caused him to regress as a QB!!!!!!!! The love he is getting from some Seminole and hurricane players. Has caused him to rethink his position. ( UNOFFICIAL QUOTE. ) " IF I DIDN'T COMMIT TO FLORIDA. AND PUT SO MUCH TIME AND WORK IN. THEN IT WOULD BE EASY. BUT AS IS. I KNOW I STILL HAVE TO CHOOSE WHAT IS BEST FOR ME AND MY FAMILY. NO DOUBT IF I DO TRANSFER. IT WILL BE WITHIN THE STATE OF FLORIDA. "

    QUOTE FROM ANONYMOUS RECORDING FROM FRIEND.

( second unofficial quote. ) " Coach Mullen and my teammates have been great. That's what makes it hard. My family thought it was great when I de-committed from OSU and others I was talking to. Because I was playing closer to home. But we assumed I would actually play. Me and Justin ( Fields ) came out at the same time. Along with Trevor. But they done got starting jobs while my butt is getting flat sitting on the bench. They are considered superstars. I am considered nothing but a backup in case Kyle get hurt. This will be my 3rd season. Things seem like they ain't nothing close to happening with me. If I wanted to sit on the bench. I could have done that shit at Ohio state or even OU. But my family said I would play because of Dan's system. But hey listen. Dan's system ain't no different than what they run up at Ohio State. Justin Fields done got that job because I turned it down. But in high school me and Justin was both on the same level. He was a five star QB and so was I. But look where he at and look at me. Now my family is open to me going somewhere, anywhere else. They see the same thing I do. This shit ain't taken me nowhere. Justin will probably go pro and get paid after next year. Hell I'll be lucky to even play. This ain't what I was promised. I mean yea, Dan didn't outright promise me the job. But he came and said. Hey I need me a five star quarterback. Then he said. Man I saw your tape and all. You are perfect for my system. Then we talked a little about Justin ( Fields. ) I said. You was talking to Justin before you came to me. Then he said. Yea , but that's before I saw your tape. He tried telling me. Justin wasn't his first choice and all. So I believed him. I grew up kinda hating the gators. Somebody said that I was a gator fan. Whatever, mean yea I am now. But let's just say. I'm a disillusioned fan. I don't know anymore what to think. On one hand I know they are a lot of gator fans out there who feel good knowing I got Kyle's back in case of an injury or something. ( pause ) But I don't know anymore. I mean who's got my back here? I read sometimes. I know some fans don't trust me. But hey they already done penciled Kyle in as the starter next season. I just don't think that's right. Now if you ask coach Mullen. He gonna say. We have a QB competition. Like we gonna compete or something. But hey, mama didn't raise no fool. Coach Mullen says all the right things. But. ( pause ) I just don't know. I feel like I'm just wasting my time and talent. I mean in my heart I'll always be a gator now no matter where I go. But yea, I have to say. At this point. I am real disillusioned and sometimes I feel flat out lied to. I guess we just got to see what's best. And do it. I been looking at both FSU and MIAMI. But I think it probably should be FSU. I mean I liked them. I was always a fan. Up till a few years ago. But we gonna do what's right for Emory from now on. We will see I guess. " ( End of anonymous quote from audio recording. )

Well regardless to whether the dark web is right or off track. Possibly someone's practical joke. Though it seems rather to much to the point for me. Just thought I would share it.

                     KN
UnGator
UnGator

Unfortunately for the Gators the QB room at UGA now resembles the other rooms.

1 Reply

Zach Goodall
Zach Goodall

Editor

Littered with talent? I’m not sure...

GatprJohn
GatprJohn

Sounds great for Georgia BUT ITS NOT! Obviously Georgia is non-commital and this will cause friction in that QB room...we are in much better shape with fewer QBs and solid commitments and an understanding of role...well placed QBs in each grade year...plus why and the hell would so many 1-2 year players transfer knowing most won’t play much...would be much smarter to go to a solid school where you are guaranteed to start...give yourself a shot at showcasing your skills to NFL scouts and coaches...trust me...Georgia is a bigger mess than anyone thinks...coaches leaving...lots of player turnover...poor long term QB planning which resulted in this years QB dibacle...I would literally take Emory Jones over any QB at Georgia this year...and he’s the flipping backup!!! WTF?!

sckendallUF
sckendallUF

Selfishly, I hope more kids realize they should leave that program. Full room though.


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