Whether or not tight end Bruce Figgins plays this year is now apparently up to him.
Thursday, head coach Mark Richt said that the UGA Athletic Association has recently ruled that if the Columbus native were to redshirt, he would not have to serve his current six-game suspension next season.
"Our Association has decided that sitting out the entire year would serve as the discipline for that," Richt said during his meeting with reporters.
Originally, school officials indicated that Figgins, who was suspended back in May for violating team rules, would have to serve his suspension if he redshirted or not.
That's no longer the case.
The question now, will Figgins, who underwent off-season shoulder surgery, decide to try and play once his suspension ends in time for Georgia's game against Vanderbilt?
Richt isn't sure.
"That really has not been determined at this point," Richt said. "I think it will depend on where we are and where everybody else is at that time."
Ealey to redshirt?
Freshman running back Washaun Ealey hasn't been told whether or not he'll wind up redshirting this fall.
But if that's the ultimately the decision coaches make, the former ECI star said he'd be just fine.
"I think I could get a lot out of redshirting," said Ealey. "At first, I'd probably be a little disappointed, but I wouldn't be worried about it."
Richt said earlier this week he and his assistants probably wouldn't start making decisions about redshirts until after the Week 6 game against Tennessee.
Barring injuries to Richard Samuel, Caleb King or Carlton Thomas, Ealey's chance to playing this year would seem remote.
If so, Ealey said he will continue to prepare hard nonetheless.
"I wasn't expecting anything," Ealey said. "I just came here to work hard and try to impress the coaches and hope I get some playing time.
Richt said that safety Quintin Banks (knee) still isn't ready to play and is unsure when he might be able to get back on the field.
"He's still trying to get back where he can run and change direction," Richt said. "It's sad, because he's such an awesome kid. He always tries to keep a positive attitude and motivate his teammate, but it just hasn't worked out for him like we would have hoped. We're still holding out hope that he will.
• Richt said that cornerback Vance Cuff (knee) is listed as doubtful for Saturday.
• Linebacker Akeem Dent (hamstring) will also not dress out. Linebacker Darius Dewberry (groin), will.
Big weekends for recruiting
Richt said this weekend's game against Arizona State and next week's home game against LSU are shaping up to be two of the biggest recruiting weekends of the year.
"They'll be a good number. I think next weekend (LSU) will be more of a crazy number than this week," Richt said. "I don't know if it has to do with the fact we're playing an SEC opponent or not or if it has to do with who else is playing what games. You just never know what games those kids want to target. But from what we're hearing, there will be an awful lot. There's a lot of interest already in this LSU thing."
Richt could not give specific numbers but says the school is bracing for those that do arrive.
"It's probably going to be more than we can handle," he said. "There's only so many that can get in; it will probably be hard to get everybody in that wants to get in."
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