September 9, 2013

Wiggins explains himself


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Freshman cornerback Shaq Wiggins admitted Monday he's had to grow up since getting to Athens back in June.

During his recruitment, the former Sandy Creek standout always came across as precocious, likeable in interviews with a zest for life and having fun.

But while he still likes to have a good time, Wiggins has been urged to start getting more serious - both on the field and off.

"The coaches have been hard on me. Coach (Mark) Richt has been hard on me, some of the older players have been hard on me, just putting me in my place," he said. "They've talked to me about just not playing all the time - outside of practice, being a little more serious about the game plan, things like that."

Wiggins, who thus far has only seen reps on special teams, claims the message has been received.

"I don't think I had any worries coming in of coaches and players getting on me," he said. "I'm going to continue to be Shaq, but I'm going to follow the rules and do things the Georgia Way."

Wiggins said teammates have also told him to be a little wiser on Twitter to avoid any misunderstanding by fans.

"Some of the players, they might tell me some things to Tweet and not to Tweet," he said. "Sometimes some of the fans will take things out of proportion. I might not even be talking about something that's football related, then they'll turn it into something and think I'm going against the team or something like that."

Gurley played through injury

Running back Todd Gurley admitted Monday he was still feeling the effects of his thigh injury Saturday against South Carolina.

"A couple of times, I couldn't pick my leg up like I wanted to," Gurley said. "But I could still run."

Apparently so.

Gurley rushed for 132 yards and scored a pair of touchdowns - one rushing and one receiving - to help lead the Bulldogs to their 41-30 win.

Not bad for someone who admitted he barely practiced the week before.

"My leg was kind of bothering me a lot, but I didn't really tell anyone," he said. "The trainers and all knew. It was bothering me a little bit, but I knew I'd be ready as soon as the game came around."

Theus promises no more mistakes

Snapper Nathan Theus said he heard what little brother John said when he guaranteed there would be no more high snaps after his Week 1 mistake against Clemson resulted in a botched field goal attempt that turned out to be the difference in the Bulldogs' 38-35 loss.

"He can guarantee all he wants, but I'm going to do all I can to make sure it doesn't happen again," Nathan Theus said. "I'll just bust my butt the best I can."

Theus said the mistake definitely wore on his mind.

"It definitely got at me a good bit. All through the preseason, I was talking to (holder) Adam Erickson and I hadn't given him any high snaps, and the one I gave him caught him off-guard," he said. "It's one of those things where we both want it back, but we can't get it back. We've just had to move on. Fortunately, we got a lot of reps at PAT and field goal against South Carolina because we scored a lot, so that was good."

No novice here. What made the mistake so uncharacteristic is Theus has actually been long-snapping for 14 years, going back to his days in Pop Warner football. He's also attended numerous camps, including the prestigious Ray Guy kicking camp where he learned to hone his craft.

"Every now and then I'll still show up at his camps, take something home with me that grabs my attention or refreshes my memory," said Theus, who said the high snap against the Tigers was definitely not the norm.

"In a game, I've never had a bad snap with a field goal or a punt," he said. "But it was good, looking back. I'm glad it happened personally because it kind of got my attention, got me focused and competing at it. It just showed what happens if I take my eye off the target."

Kimbrough hopes to earn coaches' trust

During Sunday's teleconference, head coach Mark Richt said he hoped to start seeing some of his freshmen start spelling starting linebackers Amarlo Herrera and Ramik Wilson.

Tim Kimbrough said he hopes to be one of those able to answer the call.

"I feel I've practiced well enough to get some playing time," Kimbrough said. "But I've got to prove to my coaches and show them that they can be comfortable throwing me in there some."

Kimbrough thinks he's close.

"I'm feeling real comfortable, although I don't know everything I need to right now," he said. "There are things I still need to learn."

This and that

Georgia announced that the Sept. 21 game against North Texas will kick off at 12:21 and be shown on SEC TV. … Aaron Murray was named the SEC Offensive Player of the Week after throwing for 309 yards and four touchdowns in the Bulldogs win over South Carolina . … Georgia did not practice Monday, but will resume workouts Tuesday afternoon.


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