October 27, 2012

Defense gets it done

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Jarvis Jones, Bacarri Rambo, and Alec Ogletree might have put up big numbers in Georgia's 17-9 win over Florida Saturday evening at Everbank Field, but don't expect defensive coordinator Todd Grantham to stop with just those names.

A number of other players are worthy of those praises according to the third year coordinator.

"They all had great nights," smiled Grantham. "Jordan (Jenkins), John (Jenkins), Kwame (Geathers), Shawn (Williams), Mike (Gilliard) and Cornelius (Washington). Everybody played well for us and we played like we needed to play tonight."

One of the biggest stories of the week was William's comments on Monday that the defense had been playing "soft," and many thought that those words were a big reason for Georgia's inspired performance against the Gators.

Grantham, however, wasn't so quick to give all the credit to those comments in particular.

"You guys turn to that because that is what you got a chance to hear," said Grantham. "A lot of other things are said in meetings that are along those same lines. We responded to all of that this week."

It wasn't just those comments that the Bulldog defense responded to either.

Florida's defensive players, after the South Carolina game, deemed those who were prone to fumbles "violators," and the Georgia defense took note.

They decided to adopt it as something of their own.

"We saw where Florida was talking about 'violators' and we wanted to do that ourselves," said Jordan Jenkins. "We know that the smaller guys will fumble if you keep hitting them so we came into the game wanting to really lay into those guys and get after them."

Gilliard, who said that he had his best game of the season on Saturday, agrees.

"Yeah, we saw that violators video and we knew we could do that," said the Valdosta native. "When you play a big time SEC game like tonight, you want to get turnovers to help you win."

One of the biggest turnovers of the contest game late in the second quarter when Florida was going in for a big score that would have given them the lead before half time.

Rambo, who was reading Florida quarterback Jeff Driskel from the snap, jumped a late throw into the end zone and ended the threat with his first interception of the season.

It was a play that the senior safety sensed was coming.

"I don't want to talk like I'm special or anything, but I feel like I have a great ability to read quarterbacks," said Rambo. "I guess it was because I used to play the position, but I feel like that was what I could do."

But what about the other five turnovers?

Jenkins believes that their ability to dominate the line of scrimmage and overall size was the difference.

"We felt that we were bigger than they were," he said. "They are very athletic, but we felt that we could take advantage of their size, and we did."

While a win over the second ranked team in the country is big for any team, Grantham is quick to point out that the Bulldogs still have plenty of work to do.

Despite the fact that so much is riding on Georgia's next two SEC games against Ole Miss (November 3) and Auburn (November 10), the Grantham admits there is some emotion involved with this win.

"I'm more exhausted than anything," he said. " I'm mainly just happy for our kids and enjoyed watching them celebrate and soaking it in. It was a big win for them and I'm proud of all of them. Right now, all we have done is make next week even bigger. We have to come to play, and we'll be up."

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