April 4, 2010

Lakatos sees improvement in secondary

Secondary coach Scott Lakatos warned not to get too caught up with which of his defensive backs are running with the first team and which ones are not.

He's not even close to establishing any kind of pecking order.

"We've mixed and matched all different combinations of guys and we're not really to the point where we're looking at depth chart, we're just looking at what guys can do," Lakatos said. "We're still evaluating people's ability to learn, how they interact with their teammates, how they communicate with people around them and just trying to figure out what's the best combination of people we have here."

That's particularly true at safety when Lakatos says that strong safety Bacarri Rambo is establishing himself as the leader at that position.

Otherwise, there are several questions that still need answers.

Jakar Hamilton, Shawn Williams and Nick Williams have each taken turns at free safety, a position Lakatos added where the starter remains very much up in the air.

"They're all young, so basically with all these guys you're at Square 1 from a learning standpoint," Lakatos said. "They're all a little different. Jakar is pretty athletic; they're all physical, Nick's a real physical guy, very rangy. Bacarri's pretty physical and he's the only guy who got any real playing time last year."

Quintin Banks remains in the mix, and Lakatos is excited to see what incoming freshman Marc Deas and Alec Ogletree will bring to the table this fall.

Overall, Lakatos feels progress has been made.

"I just think their knowledge of the game has improved. I think they've learned what our expectations are and the things that are necessary to play their positions," he said. "I think they're figuring out how it needs to be done and what needs to be done. There's been a lot of teaching and a lot of learning."

There's also been a lot of adjusting, particularly as far as the cornerbacks are concerned.

"All those corners are the same boat as those safeties. They all have kind of their strengths, they all have things that they do well, and a couple of things they might not be so good at right now," Lakatos said.

"It's a matter of what we want to do with who is the best person out there; we're putting those guys in a lot of situations to see what they can do."

Whatever they do, Lakatos wants his corners to play physical.

In the 3-4 scheme, the first-year Bulldog assistant said Georgia's corners will be put be man coverage a majority of the time, meaning their ability to effectively press opposing receivers and knock them out of their routes will be imperative to the defense's overall success.

"It's like everything else," Lakatos said. "It seems like they're getting better every day, lot to learn, they need a lot of reps and they need to watch it on film."

Lakatos said junior Brandon Boykin appears to be picking up that aspect while sophomore Branden Smith is "getting better."

Sanders Commings is starting to open the coach's eyes.

"The last couple of practices he's starting to show a little more," Lakatos said. "He's playing a lot more physical, several of those guys are getting better."

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