ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

rain-day
43°
Mostly Cloudy
H 52° L 42°
  • rain-day
    43°
    Current Conditions
    Mostly Cloudy. H 52° L 42°
  • cloudy-day
    43°
    Morning
    Mostly Cloudy. H 52° L 42°
  • cloudy-day
    57°
    Afternoon
    Cloudy. H 59° L 48°

Athens

Location

Add Event

Local News

  • Police are investigating a triple shooting in Newton County that left two women dead and a man injured Wednesday night. Channel 2's Matt Johnson confirmed it happened at the intersection of Clark Street and West Street in Covington.  Police confirmed the suspect is in custody.
  • A former candidate for governor pleads not guilty to charges that include lying to GBI investigators: Republican Michael Williams was in court in Gainesville Wednesday. He’s accused of falsely claiming his Hall County campaign office was burglarized last spring, with thousands of dollars worth of computer equipment stolen.  Williams, a former Republican state senator, has requested a jury trial ahead of an arraignment hearing on Wednesday. His attorney, A.J. Richman, has said his client “looks forward to his day in court.”
  • An Athens-Clarke County Commission work session is on tap for today: it’s underway at 5:30 this afternoon at City Hall.  The Clarke County School Board meets at 5:30 this afternoon.  There is an afternoon meeting of the Northeast Georgia Regional Commission, a 12 o’clock session at the downtown Holiday Inn on Broad Street in Athens. The Barrow County School, meeting this week in Winder, chooses a new School Board Chair: former Board vice chair Lynn Stevens takes over for Mark Still, who did not run for reelection last November.  The Gainesville City Council convenes this afternoon: it’s a 5:30 work session at the Administration Building in Gainesville. 
  • Justin Fields isn’t the only Georgia quarterback transferring after the season.  Mathew Downing, a rising sophomore who served as the third-string quarterback for the Bulldogs this past season, announced on Twitter on Wednesday night that he is transferring to TCU. It was unclear whether or not he would be on scholarship at his new school.  At UGA this past season, Downing backed up starter Jake Fromm and Fields. The 6-foot, 195-pounder from Alpharetta saw mop-up duty in four games. Despite Fields leaving for Ohio State last month, Downing was likely competing for the No. 4 QB job at Georgia for the 2019 season. In the early signing period, the Bulldogs flipped 4-star Dwan Mathis from Ohio State and signed junior-college transfer Stetson Bennett.
  • WBB Game Notes: Georgia Treks to Missouri for Pivotal SEC Test   Game Information  Georgia (12-5, 3-1 SEC) vs. Missouri (14-4, 3-1 SEC) Thursday, Jan. 17 | 7:02 p.m. ET | Mizzou Arena (15,061) TV: SEC Network (Paul Sunderland and Nell Fortner) Radio: Georgia Bulldogs Sports Network - 960 AM in Athens (Jeff Dantzler) Live Stats: GeorgiaDogs.com   PDF of Games Notes || Watch Thursday’s Game   Opening Tip  » Georgia travels to Columbia, Missouri to take on the Missouri Tigers this Thursday at 7 p.m. ET/6 p.m. CT. The game will be carried live on the SEC Network with Paul Sunderland and Nell Fortner on the call.    » The Lady Bulldogs overcame a 17-point deficit to defeat the No. 13-ranked Tennessee Lady Vols on Sunday. Georgia held the Lady Vols to a season-low 62 points in the win.    » Georgia is receiving votes in this week’s Associated Press poll after last week’s performances. In addition to the win against Tennessee, the Lady Bulldogs led No. 6 Mississippi State with just six minutes to go in Starkville, before falling, 80-71. It is only the second time this season that MSU has trailed in the fourth quarter.    » Senior forward Caliya Robinson has stepped up in each of the last two games, averaging 21 points and six rebounds over that span. Against Tennessee, Robinson recorded a season-high six blocks and a season-best five assists.    » Part of Robinson’s success can be credited to the play of redshirt sophomore center Jenna Staiti, who has scored in double figures in five of the last six games. Staiti and Robinson are tied for third in the league with 38 blocks each.    » The Lady Bulldogs are looking to improve their record on the road this season. Georgia is a perfect 10-0 at home, but just 1-4 on the road. The Lady Bulldogs’ lone victory came against Vanderbilt, 71-64, on Jan. 6.    Series History Overall: Georgia leads, 8-4 In Athens:  Georgia leads, 4-1 In Columbia: Tied, 2-2 Neutral Sites: Georgia leads, 2-0   Georgia Notebook Series Breakdown » Georgia has won each of the last two and three of the last four meetings against Missouri. The two teams last met in the quarterfinals of the 2018 SEC Tournament, with Georgia winning 55-41 behind a stout defensive effort. In that game, Sophie Cunningham was held to just seven points (as her team shot just 27 percent), while then-Georgia freshman Que Morrison led all scorers with 16.    Georgia Leads Nation in Blocked Shots » The Lady Bulldogs enter Thursday’s game as the No. 1 shot-blocking team in the country. Georgia’s post players have combined to swat a nation-leading 116 total shots this year, just ahead of Mississippi State’s 115 (second nationally) and South Carolina’s 113 blocks (third nationally).    Robinson, Staiti Create Impressive Post Combination » Georgia senior Caliya Robinson and redshirt-sophomore Jenna Staiti form one of the top frontcourt tandems in the SEC. Robinson is the SEC’s active career blocked shots leader with 256, while her and Staiti are tied for third in the conference this season with 38 blocks each.    In the last six games, Staiti is shooting 58 percent (29-of-50) from the floor and 67 percent (4-of-6) from 3-point range to average 12.3 ppg.    Cole Becoming Elite Point Guard » Georgia redshirt junior guard Taja Cole, who is on the Nancy Lieberman Award Watch List for the nation’s top point guard, leads the Southeastern Conference and is eighth nationally in assists with 6.6 per game. With 112 total assists this season, she has 23 more dimes than the next closest SEC player (Jazzmun Holmes (MSU), 89).    Donnetta Johnson Named SEC Freshman of the Week » Georgia freshman guard Donnetta Johnson was named the SEC Freshman of the Week for her performances against Mississippi State and Tennessee last week. She scored five points in each game -- all coming at crucial moments.    Against Mississippi State, she scored five-straight in the third quarter to cut a seven-point deficit down to two, while her five points against Tennessee came off a 3-pointer and a layup that jump started a 13-4 Georgia run and allowed her team to climb back in the game.    SEC’s Youngest Team Starting to Jell » With eight underclassmen and just four upperclassmen, the Lady Bulldogs are the youngest team in the Southeastern Conference. All eight of Georgia’s freshmen and sophomores have seen valuable playing time as each has averaged over 10 minutes played per game. Sophomore Malury Bates, who was averaging 16.1 minutes played per contest, is out for the year with a torn ACL.    First Starts for Numerous Lady Bulldogs » Georgia has used six players that had never started a game prior to this season in this year’s starting lineup. Among those is sophomore guard Gabby Connally, who has started each of Georgia’s 17 games. The Lady Bulldogs’ three freshmen have each started at least one game this year, with Donnetta Johnson receiving the nod in five of the last six contests.    Georgia One of SEC’s Best Defensive Teams » Georgia paces the SEC in field-goal percentage defense, holding teams to just 34.8 percent shooting from the floor. The Lady Bulldogs rank second in both 3-pt. field-goal percentage defense (27.5 percent) and scoring defense (55.6 ppg).    Lady Bulldogs Add Top Prospects in 2019 Signing Class » The initial signing period was a good one for the Lady Bulldogs as Georgia signed three players who are among some of the best in the nation. Currently, the Lady Bulldogs’ 2019 class ranks 14th overall by ESPNW.    Mitchellville, Maryland native and five-star guard Chloe Chapman was the first to ink with Georgia. Chapman, a five-star prospect, is the No. 28 overall recruit and No. 7 point guard according to ESPNW. Later in the week, Georgia announced the signing of five-star forward Javyn Nicholson from Lawrenceville, Georgia. Nicholson is ranked No. 6 among the country’s top power forwards. Another Georgia native, Jordan Isaacs from Alpharetta, rounds out Georgia’s class. She is a five-star player according to Prospects Nation and No. 14 overall forward according to ESPNW.    Last week, Georgia inked Virginia Tech transfer Shaniya Jones, who was a four-star guard in the 2018 class. She is on campus and will be an eligible sophomore at the conclusion of the 2019 fall term.    Georgia Has Led in All Five Losses » In each of Georgia’s five losses this season, the Lady Bulldogs have led in the game. Against UCLA, Georgia built a 12-point advantage and led for over 30 minutes. Against Georgia Tech, the Lady Bulldogs led by five points, while they built a late second-half advantage against both top-10 teams Maryland and Mississippi State. Against Villanova, the Lady Bulldogs led by seven in the first quarter. In five losses, Georgia was outscored in the fourth quarter, 95-70.    Exceeding Expectations Under Taylor » Georgia continued its upward trend under head coach Joni Taylor last season. The Lady Bulldogs finished tied with South Carolina for second place in the final SEC standings after being picked eighth in the preseason poll. It’s a trend that goes all the way back to Taylor’s first year, when her squad was picked ninth and finished sixth. Then, in 2016-17, Georgia was picked 12th and finished eighth.    All 14 SEC Universities Achieve Elite Carnegie Research Status » For the first time in the history of the Southeastern Conference, all 14 member universities have been designated as doctoral universities with the highest level of research activity by the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education, the SEC announced earlier this week.    This top designation, historically known as Research 1 or R1, recognizes the nation’s most elite research universities. According to Carnegie Commission data, fewer than three percent of all U.S. educational institutions are included in the classification, and the SEC is one of only four NCAA conferences with all its members in the top category.  

Bulldog News

  • ATHENS – What do you say we take a minute today to focus not on the seemingly endless stream of transfers and coaching defections at Georgia and in college football, but rather those who chose to stay. Like Brian Herrien, for example. You do remember him, don’t you? It seems like Herrien is a bit of forgotten man when discussions turn to Georgia’s running backs. But the rising senior is indeed still a running back at the place they call RBU, and a pretty darn good one at that. Not that anybody really stops to recognize that notion. Did you realize that Herrien is poised to go over 1,000 yards rushing for his career next year? It should happen fairly quickly, too. Herrien sits at 923 — or just 77 yards — shy after finishing as Georgia’s third-leading rusher (295 yards, 4 TDs) last season. Herrien’s a pretty decent receiver, too. He had eight catches for 42 yards this past season. You might remember his 18-yard TD catch against Texas in the Sugar Bowl. And now, with Elijah Holyfield training for the NFL draft, Herrien would probably have to be considered Georgia’s most physical back. Just ask Texas safety Brandon Jones if Herrien is a physical. He’ll tell you — if he can remember. He might’ve required some concussion protocol after tackling Herrien for what ended up being an eight-yard gain in the second quarter of the Sugar Bowl. With all those inside handoffs he tends to get, Herrien still heads into his senior season with a healthy 5.3 yards-per-carry average. Herrien’s name barely garners a mention when people start talking about Georgia’s running back situation heading into 2019. Mainly it’s D’Andre Swift you hear about, and deservedly so. We’ve all seen what Swift can do. He’s an elite back, the Bulldogs’ leading rusher last year and one of the nation’s most anticipated offensive players for next season. Accordingly, you’ll find his name toward the top of most Heisman Trophy watch lists. But one of the aspects of Georgia’s offense that made it — and Swift — so effective last season was the contrasting styles of him and Holyfield. That’s why they both were able to top 1,000 yards while sharing the primary load for the SEC’s leading rushing team. Swift would get his yards on the perimeter and catching the ball out of the backfield, while Holyfield would handle lot of the work between tackles. Each did a little of the other, but that was their primary roles. So who’s going to be Mr. Inside to Swift’s Mr. Outside next year now that Holyfield’s gone? Again, most people would probably point to the player who will wear Todd Gurley’s old No. 3 jersey for the Bulldogs next season. That’d be Zamir “Zeus” White, the No. 1 recruiting prospect in the country when he signed with Georgia out of North Carolina last year. But, of course, White suffered a season-ending ACL injury covering punts in preseason camp. That was his second such injury in less than a year as White did the same thing to his other knee the previous fall at Scotland High in Laurinburg, N.C. So while White’s reputation, career highlights and his physique say he’d be the guy for the Bulldogs next season, there’s certainly no guarantee that’ll happen coming off double knee surgeries. And while he’s known as a tough runner, his physical attributes aren’t necessarily distinguishing in that regard. White is listed at 6-foot, 210-pounds, the exact same measurements as one Brian Herrien. It’s definitely not going to be James Cook, who is quite generously listed at 5-11, 190 pounds. Maybe it could be Georgia’s latest addition, 4-star running back Kenny McIntosh of Fort Lauderdale, Fla. He’s a little bigger, at 6-1, 210 pounds or so, and is said to run even bigger with the football. But generally it takes a minute for a freshman to be the one dolling out the punishment on ball carries in college football. We’ll see. It definitely should make for a lively and interesting competition in the spring, which I wouldn’t anticipate would include the still-recovering White. But one can be sure it will include Herrien. Herrien has been a major player in all of Georgia’s spring practices since he showed up from Douglasville late in the summer of 2016. He even earned the Coffee County Hustle award and a game ball after the spring of 2017. People might say, “ah, that’s just spring ball.” But, actually, Herrien has a lot of experience contributing to the Bulldogs’ cause in a lot of meaningful games at this point in his career. That’s been both as a ball carrier and as special teams player. And you can bet he’s ready for a bigger role. And he is. I have it on good authority that there was some exploring being done on Herrien’s behalf about that whole transfer thing. There were some people in his corner who felt, at this point, he might do himself well by trying to find some new scenery, maybe hook up at a place where he could be a bigger part of the offense. You know, a fresh start. Herrien said, “no thanks. I like it where I am.” He wants to stick with Georgia. He loves Georgia, I’m told. He’ll graduate from UGA with a degree in psychology about this time next year, or shortly thereafter. He thinks it’s going to be a big year for the Bulldogs and he thinks he can help make it so. There are others like Herrien. There are a lot of players on the Bulldogs’ roster who aren’t necessary filling starring roles and beating back lawyers and agents trying to turn them on to bigger, better things. They just simply wake up every day – on time – do what their coaches, counselors and teachers ask of them and try to get a little better every day. And they’re happy doing for board, books and tuition, and maybe a little appreciation from the fan base. That’s what people are missing about Herrien and a lot of guys like him are missing in these crazy and sometimes mean-spirited times. Everybody has a strong opinion about coaches and players and they’re not afraid to share it on the multiple digital platforms that are available to everybody nowadays. Don’t forget about all those guys doing what they’re supposed to be doing. So next time you’re swooning over the latest 5-star that Georgia got or didn’t get in recruiting, remember that there’s another two-thirds of the team that is still around busting their tails and doing nothing but what they’ve been told to do while trying to get a little better every day. Guys like Brian Herrien. Don’t forget about him. The post In an age of transfer portals and coach’s defections, Georgia’s lucky to have guys like Brian Herrien appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS — Some of the controversy surrounding the College Football Playoff Committee died down when Georgia fell to Texas in the Sugar Bowl by a 28-21 count. The Bulldogs, of course, played the Longhorns without their top defensive back (Thorpe Award winner Deandre Baker), sacks leader (All-SEC pick D’Andre Walker) and best interior defensive lineman (Freshman All-American Jordan Davis). There was still plenty of conversation at the CFP Media Day in San Jose, with director Bill Hancock defending his committee and the four-team playoff. RELATED: Bill Hancock makes his feelings clear on playoff Florida athletic director Scott Stricklin weighed in on his involvement as a member of the CFP in a GatorSports.com story published on Thursday. “The people in that room really take that role seriously,” Stricklin said. “Watched a lot of football and tried to make sure we were fair to all the teams.” Many, most notably ESPN GameDay analyst Kirk Herbstreit, were vocal that Georgia was deserving of one of four CFP Playoff slots. RELATED: Committee claims ‘protocol’ kept Georgia out of 4-team playoff The Bulldogs finished the regular season 11-1 and faced No. 1 Alabama in the SEC Championship Game, leading throughout most of the game before falling 35-28. Herbstreit said the committee let politics keep Georgia out, and said on Twitter the loss shouldn’t have eliminated Georgia from the discussion.   Haha!! UGA you go play Bama. Ohio St you go play Northwestern OU you go play Texas. Seriously, you think that’s even?? UGA was up 28-14 about to go up 35-14-outplayed Bama for 50 of the 60 minutes and went in to the weekend #3! Losses like that aren’t equal to others. https://t.co/fSeKBgedTH — Kirk Herbstreit (@KirkHerbstreit) December 30, 2018   Stricklin, who along with Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury began his 3-year term on the 13-member committee this year, said the decisions were made without regard to conference affiliation. Stricklin is one of the most trusted and well-liked administrators in the SEC, but that didn’t make hearing the criticism any easier for him. “It’s frustrating any time people want to assume intent,” Stricklin said. “In that room, the integrity piece is really important, doing what’s right and not because of the conference you represent or what’s best for your own school. Doing what’s fair for the teams under consideration.” Hancock said he’s confident the committee does that, and ESPN analyst Chris Fowler agreed, but understands why the speculation will continue. “There’s always potential, people will never believe that any committee can check it’s bias at the door,” Fowler said. (But) I do give them the benefit of the doubt, and I think what they’ve produced in the first five   years are pretty sound brackets that for me don’t speak of bias.” Related: Chris Fowler says Justin Fields’ transfer could open Pandora’s Box “Transparency is an interesting idea, I don’t know how much it would change the process to say, ‘Hey, this guy voted these four in this order, this guy voted this way,’ “ he said. “Like any process, they would find the secret ballot to be valuable, because it gets so personal. Say a given committee member voted Oklahoma 5, not 4, now they become a public target. “I understand where you could say that’s part of the job, but I don’t know the nature of the narrative these days, it doesn’t help me to know which guy voted which way. The bottom line is 13 people put together their minds and they came up with this list.” RELATED: Kirby Smart says ‘every year will be different’ CFP criteria While some will continue to point to Georgia’s loss to Texas in the Sugar Bowl as evidence the committee got it right, not everyone sees it that way. “Those kids from Georgia didn’t all want to be there,” an SEC defensive coordinator told DawgNation this week. “That was obvious, and anyone that knows anything about football could see that.” Georgia football’s great CFB Playoff debate Kirk Herbstreit says CFP committee let politics keep Georgia out Kirby Smart on CFP Playoff: ‘Every year it’s going to be different’ criteria ESPN analyst goes on epic rant after Georgia football left out of playoffs Nick Saban states Georgia one of top four teams in the nation after SEC title game CFP Chairman defends leaving Georgia football out Kirby Smart lobbying for CFB Playoff spot after loss Chip Towers: Committee got it right by leaving Georgia out of playoffs Closer look at Georgia football vs. Oklahoma statistically Georgia football one of best teams, and it doesn’t matter ‘Protocol’ cited as reason Georgia left out of College Football Playoff  Nick Saban says UGA top four, but explains why he voted them No. 5 CFP director defends selection process, 4-team playoff           The post Florida AD Scott Stricklin: CFP Committee ‘fair to all teams’ in selection process appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS — Outgoing Georgia football fan favorite Terry Godwin doesn’t know the direction the Bulldogs’ offense is headed, but he knows James Coley will make sure it gets there fast. Coley is Georgia’s new offensive coordinator and play caller, replacing Jim Chaney who left for the same post and a sizable raise at Tennessee. “Coach Coley is a great guy, he’s very vocal and he brings the juice every day,” Godwin said. “You could say he’s similar to Coach (Kirby) Smart in that way.” Coley coached Godwin and the Georgia receivers in 2017 before being promoted to quarterbacks coach and co-offensive coordinator last season. Godwin, along with All-SEC center Lamont Gaillard, will play in the East-West Shrine Game at 3 p.m. on Saturday at Tropicana Field (TV: NFL Network). “I want to prove I can play inside or outside receiver,” Godwin said. “And I want to play physical.” WATCH: Terry Godwin has leadership qualities Kirby Smart covets Godwin at 22 catches for 373 yards and 3 touchdowns last season, including a team-best 75-yard touchdown catch in what was arguably the Bulldogs’ most efficient offensive game, a 41-13 win over Vanderbilt.c The team’s leading returning receiver, Godwin suffered a sprained knee that lingered into August camp, and that was soon followed by a calf strain. WATCH: ‘Amazing’ Georgia WR Terry Godwin getting back up to speed It put Godwin behind in the receiver rotation in September before the team captain got completely back up to speed and started nine of the last 10 games, including the SEC Championship Game and Sugar Bowl. Godwin has been training in preparation for this week of East-West Shrine Bowl practice leading up to the game, so he said he’s not up on the latest goings-on in Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall. But he did admit Chaney’s departure for Tennessee last week caught him off guard. “Yes sir, I was very surprised,” Godwin told DawgNation in the phone interview on Thursday. “Coach Chaney, he just got there a few years ago, I didn’t expect him to leave this soon, we’ve had a great run. “But, it’s a business decision.” And now Godwin said he expects Coley to take care of business running the Georgia offense. “Conceptually, he’s gong to make sure you know everything about those defenses before you play a team,” Godwin said. “He’s very enthusiastic, and he’s gong to make sure you have all the energy and you bring it every day.” Georgia football WR Terry Godwin   The post Terry Godwin: Georgia offensive coordinator James Coley ‘brings the juice every day’ appeared first on DawgNation.
  • WBB Game Notes: Georgia Treks to Missouri for Pivotal SEC Test   Game Information  Georgia (12-5, 3-1 SEC) vs. Missouri (14-4, 3-1 SEC) Thursday, Jan. 17 | 7:02 p.m. ET | Mizzou Arena (15,061) TV: SEC Network (Paul Sunderland and Nell Fortner) Radio: Georgia Bulldogs Sports Network - 960 AM in Athens (Jeff Dantzler) Live Stats: GeorgiaDogs.com   PDF of Games Notes || Watch Thursday’s Game   Opening Tip  » Georgia travels to Columbia, Missouri to take on the Missouri Tigers this Thursday at 7 p.m. ET/6 p.m. CT. The game will be carried live on the SEC Network with Paul Sunderland and Nell Fortner on the call.    » The Lady Bulldogs overcame a 17-point deficit to defeat the No. 13-ranked Tennessee Lady Vols on Sunday. Georgia held the Lady Vols to a season-low 62 points in the win.    » Georgia is receiving votes in this week’s Associated Press poll after last week’s performances. In addition to the win against Tennessee, the Lady Bulldogs led No. 6 Mississippi State with just six minutes to go in Starkville, before falling, 80-71. It is only the second time this season that MSU has trailed in the fourth quarter.    » Senior forward Caliya Robinson has stepped up in each of the last two games, averaging 21 points and six rebounds over that span. Against Tennessee, Robinson recorded a season-high six blocks and a season-best five assists.    » Part of Robinson’s success can be credited to the play of redshirt sophomore center Jenna Staiti, who has scored in double figures in five of the last six games. Staiti and Robinson are tied for third in the league with 38 blocks each.    » The Lady Bulldogs are looking to improve their record on the road this season. Georgia is a perfect 10-0 at home, but just 1-4 on the road. The Lady Bulldogs’ lone victory came against Vanderbilt, 71-64, on Jan. 6.    Series History Overall: Georgia leads, 8-4 In Athens:  Georgia leads, 4-1 In Columbia: Tied, 2-2 Neutral Sites: Georgia leads, 2-0   Georgia Notebook Series Breakdown » Georgia has won each of the last two and three of the last four meetings against Missouri. The two teams last met in the quarterfinals of the 2018 SEC Tournament, with Georgia winning 55-41 behind a stout defensive effort. In that game, Sophie Cunningham was held to just seven points (as her team shot just 27 percent), while then-Georgia freshman Que Morrison led all scorers with 16.    Georgia Leads Nation in Blocked Shots » The Lady Bulldogs enter Thursday’s game as the No. 1 shot-blocking team in the country. Georgia’s post players have combined to swat a nation-leading 116 total shots this year, just ahead of Mississippi State’s 115 (second nationally) and South Carolina’s 113 blocks (third nationally).    Robinson, Staiti Create Impressive Post Combination » Georgia senior Caliya Robinson and redshirt-sophomore Jenna Staiti form one of the top frontcourt tandems in the SEC. Robinson is the SEC’s active career blocked shots leader with 256, while her and Staiti are tied for third in the conference this season with 38 blocks each.    In the last six games, Staiti is shooting 58 percent (29-of-50) from the floor and 67 percent (4-of-6) from 3-point range to average 12.3 ppg.    Cole Becoming Elite Point Guard » Georgia redshirt junior guard Taja Cole, who is on the Nancy Lieberman Award Watch List for the nation’s top point guard, leads the Southeastern Conference and is eighth nationally in assists with 6.6 per game. With 112 total assists this season, she has 23 more dimes than the next closest SEC player (Jazzmun Holmes (MSU), 89).    Donnetta Johnson Named SEC Freshman of the Week » Georgia freshman guard Donnetta Johnson was named the SEC Freshman of the Week for her performances against Mississippi State and Tennessee last week. She scored five points in each game -- all coming at crucial moments.    Against Mississippi State, she scored five-straight in the third quarter to cut a seven-point deficit down to two, while her five points against Tennessee came off a 3-pointer and a layup that jump started a 13-4 Georgia run and allowed her team to climb back in the game.    SEC’s Youngest Team Starting to Jell » With eight underclassmen and just four upperclassmen, the Lady Bulldogs are the youngest team in the Southeastern Conference. All eight of Georgia’s freshmen and sophomores have seen valuable playing time as each has averaged over 10 minutes played per game. Sophomore Malury Bates, who was averaging 16.1 minutes played per contest, is out for the year with a torn ACL.    First Starts for Numerous Lady Bulldogs » Georgia has used six players that had never started a game prior to this season in this year’s starting lineup. Among those is sophomore guard Gabby Connally, who has started each of Georgia’s 17 games. The Lady Bulldogs’ three freshmen have each started at least one game this year, with Donnetta Johnson receiving the nod in five of the last six contests.    Georgia One of SEC’s Best Defensive Teams » Georgia paces the SEC in field-goal percentage defense, holding teams to just 34.8 percent shooting from the floor. The Lady Bulldogs rank second in both 3-pt. field-goal percentage defense (27.5 percent) and scoring defense (55.6 ppg).    Lady Bulldogs Add Top Prospects in 2019 Signing Class » The initial signing period was a good one for the Lady Bulldogs as Georgia signed three players who are among some of the best in the nation. Currently, the Lady Bulldogs’ 2019 class ranks 14th overall by ESPNW.    Mitchellville, Maryland native and five-star guard Chloe Chapman was the first to ink with Georgia. Chapman, a five-star prospect, is the No. 28 overall recruit and No. 7 point guard according to ESPNW. Later in the week, Georgia announced the signing of five-star forward Javyn Nicholson from Lawrenceville, Georgia. Nicholson is ranked No. 6 among the country’s top power forwards. Another Georgia native, Jordan Isaacs from Alpharetta, rounds out Georgia’s class. She is a five-star player according to Prospects Nation and No. 14 overall forward according to ESPNW.    Last week, Georgia inked Virginia Tech transfer Shaniya Jones, who was a four-star guard in the 2018 class. She is on campus and will be an eligible sophomore at the conclusion of the 2019 fall term.    Georgia Has Led in All Five Losses » In each of Georgia’s five losses this season, the Lady Bulldogs have led in the game. Against UCLA, Georgia built a 12-point advantage and led for over 30 minutes. Against Georgia Tech, the Lady Bulldogs led by five points, while they built a late second-half advantage against both top-10 teams Maryland and Mississippi State. Against Villanova, the Lady Bulldogs led by seven in the first quarter. In five losses, Georgia was outscored in the fourth quarter, 95-70.    Exceeding Expectations Under Taylor » Georgia continued its upward trend under head coach Joni Taylor last season. The Lady Bulldogs finished tied with South Carolina for second place in the final SEC standings after being picked eighth in the preseason poll. It’s a trend that goes all the way back to Taylor’s first year, when her squad was picked ninth and finished sixth. Then, in 2016-17, Georgia was picked 12th and finished eighth.    All 14 SEC Universities Achieve Elite Carnegie Research Status » For the first time in the history of the Southeastern Conference, all 14 member universities have been designated as doctoral universities with the highest level of research activity by the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education, the SEC announced earlier this week.    This top designation, historically known as Research 1 or R1, recognizes the nation’s most elite research universities. According to Carnegie Commission data, fewer than three percent of all U.S. educational institutions are included in the classification, and the SEC is one of only four NCAA conferences with all its members in the top category.  
  • ATHENS — Kentucky coach John Calipari raised eyebrows last spring when he said Georgia basketball head coach was one of the top three jobs in the SEC. First-year coach Tom Crean has yet to make that a reality. Crean’s Bulldogs are 9-7 overall and 1-3 in the SEC at what’s essentially the hallway point of the season. RELATED: Georgia basketball coach demands more maturity, toughness “Here’s what Tom is doing, he’s playing a different style, he’s spacing the court, he’s bringing people out, they are long and active and they offensive rebound the crap out of the ball, that’s what he’s got them doing,” Calipari said Tuesday night. “This game got away from them in the end, really the beginning of the second half, and then we kept it there. “ Like every game I’ve watched, they had their chances. At Auburn they had their chances to be right there and win the game, and that’s a hard place to play. So he’s doing a good job with this team.” Georgia has indeed competed. WATCH: Tom Crean says it comes down to hustle points at Auburn Crean’s system has provided an offensive liberation of sorts, with players enjoying more offensive freedom through the Bulldogs’ spacing. Florida is next up on the Bulldogs’ schedule, the Saturday noon game at Stegeman Coliseum already sold out. Georgia has impressed in wins over Oakland, Georgia Tech and Vanderbilt, and nearly pulled off an upset over then-ranked Arizona State. “It seems it’s just a matter of getting players who can shoot effectively from 3-point range, as UGA’s struggle from the perimeter has been real. Kentucky led just 35-31 on Tuesday night despite Georgia hitting just 2-of-13 from 3-point range in the first half of a 69-49 loss to the Wildcats. RELATED: Kentucky wins 12th straight over Georgia, overcomes sellout crowd The Bulldogs rank 287th in the nation out of 351 teams (and 12th of 14 teams in the SEC) in 3-point shooting accuracy (31.6 percent). The rise of 6-foot-11 sophomore forward Nicolas Claxton has been a highlight for the team, wit Claxton leading the SEC in rebounding (9.4 per game) and blocked shots (3.3) while leading UGA in assists (2.1 per game) and in scoring (12.6 points per game). “He’s a unique player, and all the tape I’ve watched, I like what Tommy is doing with him, pushing him a different places around the floor at times, at the rim, at times, at the top of the key, letting him shoot,” Calipari said. “He’s letting him grow and living with it, and   9 rebounds and 12 points (Tuesday night), that’s pretty good stuff.” Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari The post WATCH: John Calipari analyzes Georgia basketball, complimentary of Nicolas Claxton appeared first on DawgNation.