Smart: 'Cornerback is Up for Grabs'

Georgia football head coach Kirby Smart met with the media Tuesday prior to spring practice and he said the cornerback position is "up for grabs."

Spring practice is a crucial part of college football. It's the time where teams evaluate strengths and weaknesses, along with hopefully finding answers at position group where there are questions entering the next season. 

Unlike the 2020 season, heading to this fall, college football programs are preparing for a full offseason evaluation period. 

One of the few questions on Georgia's roster is the cornerback position, and during Tuesday's press conference with the media, head coach Kirby Smart addressed the question.

He made sure one thing was clear. The cornerback position — a group without a player returning with a single career start — is "up for grabs." 

"Cornerback is up for grabs. Every guy is working on the details of that position," said Smart. 

Eric Stokes, Tyson Campbell and DJ Daniel totaled 61 starts at Georgia, and they are gone. 

The good news for the faithful is that Georgia is not shy on talent at the position, though they are short on bodies in general. 

Tyrique Stevenson's transfer from Georgia to Miami was a crucial blow to a defensive backs group that was already looking rather thin headed to the spring semester. 

Many Georgia fans have clamored for the Bulldogs to become active in the NCAA transfer market. Whether it be DreShun Miller, a talented corner that played under new defensive back coach Jahmile Addae, or the latest trend in former Clemson cornerback Derion Kendrick. 

Miller is headed to Auburn, and Kendrick is still undecided, though Smart and his coaching staff seem content on solving those depth issues in other ways.

They have a talent-laden pool at corner. Kelee Ringo was the consensus No. 1 corner in America in 2020. Jalen Kimber played exceptionally well in clean-up duty as a true freshman in 2020 and has tremendous upside as a technician at the position. Nyland Green, a member of the SI99, has early-impact potential as a true freshman this fall. 

Then there's Ameer Speed. The lonely "veteran" of the bunch, if you can call him that. He's yet to make a career start, but has played in 34 games during his career at Georgia, mostly as a special teamer. He's not short on physical ability either. At 6-foot-3, 210 pounds, Speed is exceptionally gifted. 

Still, Georgia's staff is having to find creative ways to fill the void of depth at the defensive back position. 

In his press conference Tuesday, Smart mentioned the fact that "everyone on our team is competing at cornerback." 

And he's not kidding. Sources close to the program have indicated that Lovasea Carroll, a member of the 2021 signing class as a running back, has also been learning defensive back positions. 

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