Chat with David Ching
Welcome to DawgNation! On Wednesday, reporter David Ching stops by to chat about the state of Georgia football.
Ching joined ESPN.com in 2011 after six years covering Georgia for the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer and Athens Banner-Herald. He lives in Athens, Ga.
Send your questions now and join Ching Wednesday at noon ET!
David Ching (12:02 PM)
Hi everybody. Hope you enjoyed G-Day on Saturday. It was about as nice as a day as it could have possibly been. Good way to start the five-month drought until the next game. Let's get started.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Who will be the Starting Defense for Georgia in College Football in 2013?
David Ching (12:06 PM)
That one's hard to predict since everyone isn't on campus yet. But as of right now for the Clemson game, I'll say Garrison Smith, Mike Thornton and Sterling Bailey up front, Jordan Jenkins and James DeLoach at OLB, Ramik Wilson and Amarlo Herrera at ILB, Damian Swann and Sheldon Dawson at CB and Josh Harvey-Clemons and Tray Matthews at S. We'll see, though. Some of those are much more certain than others.
In your opinion, what is the attitude and mentality of this team compared to last years? Is there anyone who has stepped up this Spring to take that leadership role next to Garrison Smith on the defensive side?
David Ching (12:11 PM)
I think Damian Swann would be one pick there. It's possible that the young defensive players are a little hungrier because they have more to prove, but I really think that talking point is more of a cliche than something that will actually become a factor in anyway. It seems like this is going to be a very good team, but it wasn't exactly intact this spring so I don't think we've seen what it can be yet.
David Ching (12:14 PM)
It's not going to be a very big class. That's the first thing. I think Georgia will get Michel and Chubb. Michel announces his decision on April 26 on ESPNU. Chubb will announce shortly after Michel.
David Ching (12:15 PM)
As far as the defense...do you mean Georgia's defense for next season? I'll assume so. I think they're going to be very good once they work the kinks out. I'll go so far as to say if they're good enough to beat South Carolina in Week 2, they'll win the East again.
allan (austin tx)
Good afternoon, What is your take on the 2014 recruiting class? Will UGA be able to land Michel & Chubb? What about the defense? Thanks.
David Ching (12:16 PM)
Whoops. Just realized I didn't post that question. Those last two responses were for Allan's question.
dalton waynesville [via mobile]
dO U SEE REAKWON MCMILLIAN,ELISHA SHAW OR LORENZON CARTER SIGNING WITH THE DAWGS IF NOT ALL OF THEM WILL ANY OF THEM SIGN
David Ching (12:18 PM)
Discussed this with our recruiting all-star Kipp Adams. Georgia's trailing Ohio State, Clemson and Alabama for McMillan. Battling Alabama for Shaw and Carter. Kipp says Carter is an Alabama lean and it's 50-50 on Shaw. So who knows at this point. It's 10 months until signing day.
Mark Anthony (Athens, GA)
Which freshman do you think will make the biggest offensive impact this season?
David Ching (12:22 PM)
There really aren't many to choose from there because the offense returns so many veterans. I suppose J.J. Green would be the most likely pick after spring practice. He impressed everyone after shifting to TB following their original plan for him to play WR. I think he'll have a role this fall. Not sure how many other offensive freshmen we'd say that about. Two guys to watch this summer would be A.J. Turman and Brendan Douglas. The reason Green played TB this spring is because their backfield depth is not ideal. Those guys will have a chance to carve out some playing time, too.
What position do you think Taj Griffin will be at the next level?
David Ching (12:24 PM)
Kipp said Griffin is 5-9 and 170 as a 10th grader. He thinks he could become a decent-sized running back by the time he graduates. Maybe 5-10.5, 188. So let's predict TB as of now.
Best guesses to start at tackle.
David Ching (12:26 PM)
That's something that came up yesterday on our DawgNation forum. I don't really know, but here's a completely unoriginal guess: Gates and Theus, same as last year. I think they're going to play more players this year, but my assumption is that last year's top five will still be the top five when they open this season. Keep an eye on Xzavier Ward, though.
Frank (New Orleans)
Can Aaron Murray find his way to New York as a Heisman Trophy finalist?
David Ching (12:28 PM)
Sure he could. If Georgia wins the SEC championship game, I bet he'll be there. Here's the problem for a UGA candidate: I could see the vote being split between Gurley and Murray. Aaron is probably facing the better odds, though, because he'll probably break all of the SEC's career passing records this year.
you said Tray and JHC for the safeties so what you think happens with the jucos coming in the fall
David Ching (12:31 PM)
That's where it gets interesting. I think Kennar Johnson might end up playing corner. Asked Scott Lakatos about that yesterday and he pretty much didn't answer the question. But Shaq Fluker is interesting to me. Considering how they're planning to use Harvey-Clemons in that nickel role, there's time to be won at strong safety. Right now he'd have to beat Corey Moore and Connor Norman for playing time there. He's got some great tape, so I think he could become a factor.
shaq wiggins and brandon langley how much time you see them playing this yr
Do you think Shaq Wiggins will have a chance to start against Clemson when he comes in?
David Ching (12:38 PM)
I'll just answer those two together. Great minds apparently think alike since y'all submitted those two at almost the exact same time.
David Ching (12:40 PM)
I don't think Wiggins will start against Clemson, but I won't rule him out completely. It seemed to me that Sheldon Dawson put himself in decent position to be the starter this spring before he hurt his hamstring. I think Wiggins is good enough to play some as a freshman, though, and maybe threaten Dawson for playing time if Sheldon falters. I think Langley will probably play, but he might be a special teams guy this year. Hard to say any of that stuff with much conviction since they aren't even on campus yet, though.
what you think about this idea play the freshmen let them take some bumps n bruises and maybe within 2 yrs UGA may have the best secondary and defense in the SEC and nation.
David Ching (12:48 PM)
I think they're going to play. Pretty much all of them, but some a lot more than others. If the guys who look like the favorites become the starters this fall, you're looking at a true freshman (Matthews), two true sophomores (Dawson and Harvey-Clemons) and a true junior (Swann). That's already going to be one of the youngest secondaries in the league. I think that secondary is going to wind up being really good, particularly once you add Wiggins and Fluker to the mix this summer.
Jordan (Bloomington, IN)
What's the deal with Ray Drew? I remember him being regarded as a 5 star prospect in the 2011 Dream Team class, but the past two years he's played very sparingly and it doesn't seem that he has a good chance of starting this year as well.
David Ching (12:59 PM)
He played a lot in the second half of last season (I think he had eight or 10 tackles against Tech last year, didn't he?) and I think he'll play a good bit this year. Whether he'll start, I don't know, but he's going to have the biggest role he's had yet this fall. Seems like he's still learning how to play with consistency. Probably should have redshirted in 2011, but they didn't have that luxury. My opinion is that he is still going to be an impact player in college, but he's progressing more slowly than expected when he was a recruit.
David Ching (1:01 PM)
All right everybody. Good hour. Y'all enjoy the Masters this week. Taking my brother for his first trip on Saturday, so look for us on TV. I'll be the one with the rainbow wig and the John 3:16 sign. Catch you back here in two weeks at noon.