December 11, 2010

Saturday's practice notebook

So much for a potential NFL lockout and whether or it will affect A.J. Green's decision to turn pro after his junior year.

Turns out it won't matter at all.

"I did a lot of research on it and I don't think there's going to be a lockout," Green said after Georgia's first practice for the Liberty Bowl Saturday morning. "I think it will last, maybe a couple of days. That's not going to be a part of my decision."

Last Wednesday, Green and several Bulldog underclassmen met with Atlanta Falcons president Rich McKay.

McKay, who also serves on the board of directors for the NFL's competition committee, spoke with Green and fellow underclassmen Trinton Sturdivant, Cordy Glenn, Justin Houston, Brandon Boykin and Blair Walsh about the potential lockout. Green said they were also assured that the NFL will hold its annual draft this April.

Green denied that he is leaning one way or the other.

"Not at all," said Green, who will not send his papers to the NFL's advisory board. "After the bowl, I'm going to go home, talk with my parents and come to some kind of decision."

Green also confirmed that he has had a Lloyd's of London insurance policy since the start of his sophomore year. He said his current policy will pay him $5 million in case of injury.

Players will support new S&C staff

Quarterback Aaron Murray and Boykin won't lie. Both Bulldogs were surprised when it was announced that former strength and conditioning coach Dave Van Halanger was being replaced by Joe Tereshinski.

"There were a little bit of mixed feelings for everybody. We were all kind of shocked at first with respect to what happened," Boykin said. "But I think it's going to be pretty good for us either way it goes. He's going to implement some things that will make us work and regardless we're going to be ready for the season."

Murray agreed.

"It caught us off guard a little bit. Coach Van is a great coach and we love him dearly and he did a great job of getting us ready for each year," Murray said. "We've got a lot of faith in Coach T in that he's going to be able to come in and get things going this offseason and we're pretty excited for that. We're ready to work hard and change the culture around here a little bit."

Boykin said Tereshinski let the players know that several noticeable changes were going to be in store.

"It's going to be challenging. It's going to be different than anything we're used to since we've been here, but at the same time I think it's good for us to challenge our bodies and get the most out of us," Boykin said. "People are probably to whine and moan at first, but honestly, I think it will be best for us. We'll definitely be stronger and nobody is going to take any reps off."

Boykin still undecided on future

Boykin confirmed he has sent his name to the NFL's Advisory Board but conceded there's a lot of information he has to process before deciding whether or not to apply for the NFL Draft.

"It's winding down and I'm definitely thinking about it. I'm talking to my coaches and asking them what they think and what they think I still need to improve on," Boykin said. "But it's going to come down to what's best for me and if I'm ready for the next level, whether or not I've achieved everything I can here and whether I can compete at a high level going in (to the NFL)."

Boykin was asked whether or not he thought he was ready to make the job.

"It's hard to say. Like I said, there's still a lot of information out there," he said. "I know there are a lot of things I can get better at. I'm not going to say I'm completely ready, but then again I don't know if anybody is ever COMPLETELY ready because we've all got things we can improve on."

Dawgs back on the practice field

The Bulldogs donned full pads for a 90-minute workout, their first in preparation for the Liberty Bowl Dec. 31 against Central Florida.

The Bulldogs (6-6) will not practice again until Wednesday evening when final exams are complete. Georgia will have a total of eight practice days here before taking off for the holidays in preparation for its Liberty Bowl contest against the 24th-ranked Central Florida Knights (10-3). The team will reconvene in Memphis for final preparations starting on Dec. 26th.

"Practice was short and sweet, and it was just good to get the body going again," said Murray. "It was just what we needed."

Head coach Mark Richt was not available to speak with the media after practice as he was spending time with recruits and their families.

Brown, Long to serve as official tour guides

Memphis native Marlon Brown said he's been inundated with questions about his hometown. For example, where are the best restaurants to eat and places to go.

"Anywhere on Beale Street is cool, but Rendezvous is REAL good and Cork's is REAL Good," Brown said. "But you've got to go to Ching's Hot Wings on Getwell Road, man, that's something else."

Murray joked that he plans on following Long around.

"I know Austin will know where to go to eat," Murray said of the offensive lineman. "We're going to stick with him."

Brown said he's just excited to be going back home.

"It's going to be a lot of fun, getting to play in front of my family and friends," he said. "I can't wait."

Brown said he's heard his former school, Harding Academy, is buying out a block of tickets for the game and expects 150 or so family and friends to attend the game.

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