Former UGA football DB enters transfer portal

Former Georgia defensive back Daran Branch has entered the NCAA transfer portal

Former Georgia Bulldogs defensive back Daran Branch has entered the NCAA transfer portal.

Branch was a three-star recruit in the class of 2020. Branch played high school football at Amite High School in Louisiana.

Before committing to the University of Georgia, Branch had been committed to the Ole Miss Rebels. Kirby Smart and the Dawgs were able to get him to flip on signing day in 2020.

The former three-star defensive back was not with the Bulldogs for the 2021 season while he debated his football future. Branch recorded one tackle in one game in 2020. The former Amite star has regained interest in returning to college football.

Daran Branch, Kelee Ringo, Jalen Kimber and Major Burns combined to form Georgia’s four scholarship defensive backs in the class of 2020.

Kimber has transferred to Florida. Branch is no longer with the team and is in the portal. Burns transferred to LSU. Ringo, a former five-star, did have a game-clinching interception return for a touchdown in the national championship game.

Georgia Bulldogs defensive back Kelee Ringo runs for a touchdown after an interception against the Alabama Crimson Tide in the 2022 CFP national championship game. Ringo is UGA’s final class of 2020 defensive back recruit on the roster. Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Kirby Smart and the Dawgs can be proud they landed Ringo in the class of 2020. Georgia had to make efforts to reload at the position in the class of 2022 with four more defensive back signees.

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Georgia football WR Jaylen Johnson enters transfer portal

Georgia Bulldogs wide receiver Jaylen Johnson, a former walk-on, has entered the NCAA transfer portal.

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Georgia Bulldogs wide receiver Jaylen Johnson has entered the NCAA transfer portal. Johnson fought and clawed his way to playing time after walking-on to the football team. Johnson was an unheralded recruit coming out of Peachtree High School.

Kirby Smart and Georgia put Johnson on scholarship after the 2020 college football season. Johnson will have two years of eligibility at his new home.

Jaylen Johnson is likely seeking more playing time. The junior wide receiver finished the 2021 season with four touches for 35 yards. Johnson had Georgia’s longest play (21 yards) against Clemson and forced a fumble against Vanderbilt. Johnson’s playing time on offense decreased as the season went on.

Georgia Bulldogs wide receiver Jaylen Johnson scored a touchdown during the Georgia spring game. Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Johnson played in all 10 games in 2020 as a reserve receiver and special teams player. He recorded no statistics.

The 6-foot-2, 192-pound receiver walked on as a freshman and was a fixture on the scout team in 2018. In 2019, Johnson played in three games and ended the year with two catches for 20 yards.

Jaylen Johnson previously wore No. 81 before changing to No. 23. Johnson joins defensive back Ameer Speed in the transfer portal.

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Key Georgia football DB tears ACL

Key Georgia football DB Tykee Smith tears ACL and will be out for the remainder of the season.

The Georgia Bulldogs will be without defensive back Tykee Smith for the rest of the 2021 college football season. Smith transferred to the University of Georgia from West Virginia this offseason.

Tykee Smith has battled a foot injury to start the season. He was just getting healthy and then tore his ACL. Smith, a junior, recorded three tackles against Auburn and will be able to redshirt this year. Smith’s NFL aspirations may have to wait another season following his injury.

Smith entered the season ranked one of the top safeties in the country. He transferred to UGA partially to be reunited with Georgia defensive backs coach Jahmile Addae, his former position coach at West Virginia.

Smith was counted on to start at safety or nickel for the Bulldogs in 2021 alongside Christopher Smith and Lewis Cine. Christopher Smith suffered a separated shoulder last week against Auburn.

Dan Jackson, David Daniel, William Poole, Javon Bullard, Kamari Lassiter, and Lovasea Carrol are among the players Kirby Smart will turn to in the absence of Tykee Smith and Christopher Smith.

Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

Tykee Smith had the difficult task of guarding explosive passing attack in the Big 12 last season, but he helped the Mountaineers have the top passing defense in the country.

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Georgia football player card: DB Latavious Brini

Georgia Bulldogs defensive back Latavious Brini had 11 tackles including 3.5 tackles for loss last season

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Latavious Brini, defensive back (No. 36):

Class: Senior

Height: 6-2

Weight: 210 pounds

Hometown: Miami Gardens, Florida

High School: Mater Academy Charter

Georgia Bulldogs defensive back Latavious Brini had the best year of his career in 2020. Brini finished the 2020 season with 11 tackles, including 3.5 tackles for loss. Brini had a career-high five tackles against Cincinnati in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, which was his first career start.

Brini came to the University of Georgia as a three-star recruit. Brini played in five games in 2019, when he intercepted a pass against Murray State.

Brini is another example of Georgia football’s increased recruiting in Florida. Florida, Florida State and Miami have been losing a lot of talent to Clemson, Georgia and Alabama over the past decade.

Georgia’s defense is projected to be great once again next season. Brini brings 17 games of experience to the secondary, which is important for the Dawgs, who lost Eric Stokes, Tyson Campbell, Mark Webb and Richard LeCounte to the 2021 NFL draft.

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Georgia football player card: LB John Staton

Georgia linebacker John Staton transferred from Samford. In 2019, he recorded 116 total tackles and was named All-Southern Conference

John Staton, Linebacker (No. 35):

Class: Graduate student

Height: 6-1

Weight: 225 pounds

Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia

High School: The Lovett School

Georgia Bulldogs linebacker John Staton IV transferred to Athens after having an impressive career with Samford. Staton elected not to play in Samford’s spring 2021 college football season.

Instead Staton elected to finish his college football career with Georgia. In 2019, Staton recorded 116 total tackles and was named first team All-Southern Conference. Staton recorded an incredible 22 tackles at Mercer in 2019.

John Staton graduated from Samford in 2020. He played in 34 career games with Samford, where he recorded 149 total tackles. His father, John III, played football at UNC.

Will Staton be able to earn playing time at linebacker for Georgia? Dan Lanning and the Bulldog defense have lots of talent like Nakobe Dean, Trezmen Marshall, Channing Tindall, and Quay Walker at inside linebacker.

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Georgia football player card: RB Daijun Edwards

Georgia Bulldogs running back Daijun Edwards finished the 2020 college football season with 218 rushing yards on 37 carries

Running Back Daijun Edwards (No. 33):

Class: Sophomore

Height: 5-10

Weight: 201 pounds

Hometown: Moultrie, Georgia

High School: Colquitt County High School

Georgia Bulldogs running back Daijun Edwards finished the 2020 college football season with 218 rushing yards on 37 carries. Edwards played in nine of Georgia’s 10 games and saw additional playing time after Kendall Milton suffered a knee injury.

Edwards recorded one reception for three yards, so he will need to continue to work on that aspect of his game to boost his NFL draft stock.

Edwards came to Athens as a four-star recruit in the class of 2020. The Colquitt County graduate was rated anywhere between the No. 13 and No. 33 best running back in the country.

Edwards will compete with Kendall Milton, Zamir White, James Cook, Kenny McIntosh and more for playing time. Georgia returns all of its leading rushers from last season.

Cook is the most explosive player of the group and is an excellent pass catcher, but he isn’t as polished between the tackles as White. McIntosh is a versatile back who is very elusive. Milton, a former five-star recruit, is powerful like Nick Chubb and has a high ceiling.

Edward has displayed flashes of a rugged, tough style on tape. Edwards saw lots of playing time throughout his high school career at Colquitt County and is quite experienced.

Here’s a look back at his first career touchdown for the Bulldogs:

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April 17, 2021; Athens, Georgia; Georgia Bulldogs running back Daijun Edwards (33) is taken to the ground by linebacker Trezmen Marshall (15) during the Georgia Spring Game at Sanford Stadium. Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Georgia football kicker announces transfer destination

Georgia Bulldogs kicker Brooks Buce enter the NCAA transfer portal early this offseason and is transferring to the Troy Trojans

Georgia Bulldogs kicker Brooks Buce entered into the NCAA’s transfer portal in Jan. 2021. Now, Buce is transferring to the Troy Trojans football program.

Buce played high school football at Greater Atlanta Christian before coming to the University of Georgia. Buce walked on at UGA in 2017. He has been the back-up kicker since 2018.

Buce is in the portal as a junior and will be immediately eligible to play at Troy. Buce will look for more playing time at Troy. Freshman Scott Taylor Renfroe will be Buce’s primary competition for the starting kicker role.

Georgia starting kicker Jack Podlesny is coming off a good season. He went 13-of-16 on field goals, including a 53-yard game-winning kick against Cincinnati in the Peach Bowl.

Buce has attempted six kickoffs in his career with five of them resulting in touchbacks.

Brooks Buce announced his transfer destination via his Twitter account:

We wish Brooks Buce luck with Troy!

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Georgia football player card: LB Chaz Chambliss

Will Georgia Bulldogs freshman linebacker Chaz Chambliss be able to crack Dan Lanning’s linebacker rotation this season?

Chaz Chambliss, Linebacker (No. 32):

Class: Freshman

Height: 6-2

Weight: 250 pounds

Hometown:Carrollton, Georgia

High School:  Carrollton High School

Will Georgia Bulldogs freshman linebacker Chaz Chambliss be able to crack Dan Lanning’s linebacker rotation this season? Chambliss enrolled early at Georgia, so he should have a head start on some of the other freshmen. Additionally, the 6-foot-2, 250-pound linebacker has the size to play immediately.

Chambliss comes to Athens after being rated as a four-star linebacker. The Carrollton star finished rated as the No. 360 recruit in the class of 2021 and the No. 40 linebacker.

During his recruiting process, Chambliss had his mind set on UGA. He never released a list of top schools. However, he did receive dozens of scholarship offers, including elite programs like Alabama, Florida, Clemson, and Ohio State.

The Georgia defense does not have as much depth at outside linebacker following the departures of Azeez Ojulari and Jermaine Johnson. Georgia still has elite talents like Adam Anderson and Nolan Smith, but the Dawgs likely won’t have as large of a rotation as last season.

The four-star linebacker is a part of Georgia’s incoming class of 2021, which featured four highly-ranked linebackers: Xavian Sorey Jr., Smael Mondon, Jamon Dumas-Johnson, and Chaz Chambliss.

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Georgia football player card: DB William Poole

Georgia Bulldogs senior defensive back William Poole saw action in six of Georgia’s ten games in 2020.

William Poole, Defensive Back (No. 31):

Class: Senior

Height: 6-0

Weight: 190 pounds

Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia

High School: Hapeville Charter High School

Georgia Bulldogs senior defensive back William Poole saw action in six of Georgia’s ten games in 2020. The Atlanta, Georgia, native has played in 22 total games throughout his Georgia career and has accumulated 13 career tackles.

Poole came to the University of Georgia as a four-star recruit. Poole redshirted in 2019 when he played against Murray State, Arkansas State, and Georgia Tech and recorded three tackles.

He saw a good amount playing time a sophomore in 2018. That season he played in eight games and secured ten total tackles.

Poole and fellow Georgia defensive back Christopher Smith were teammates at Hapeville Charter.

Georgia is looking less thin in the secondary following the additions of West Virginia transfer Tykee Smith and Clemson transfer Derion Kendrick.

The Dawgs have Kelee Ringo, Ameer Speed, Jalen Kimber, and more returning at cornerback. Georgia’s defensive front is expected to be elite once again next season.

Sep 8, 2018; Columbia, SC, USA; Georgia Bulldogs defensive back William Poole (31) brings down South Carolina Gamecocks running back Ty’Son Williams (27) in the first half at Williams-Brice Stadium. Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

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Georgia football player card: RB Anthony Summey

Georgia Bulldogs running back Anthony Summey has primarily served a scout team role during his two-year career in Athens

Running Back Anthony Summey (No. 28):

Class: Redshirt sophomore

Height: 6-0

Weight: 210 pounds

Hometown: Ocean Township, New Jersey

High School: St. Peter’s Preparatory High School

Georgia Bulldogs running back Anthony Summey has not seen playing time during his two-year career in Athens. He primarily serves as a scout team running back.

Summey came to the University of Georgia as a two-star recruit as a member of the class of 2019. Summey redshirted in 2019.

He played high school football at St. Peter’s Preparatory. Summey plays with a steady style, but lacks game-changing speed.

The Ocean Township, New Jersey, native is expected to compete with Kendall Milton, Zamir White, James Cook, Kenny McIntosh and Daijun Edwards for playing time. Kirby Smart and Georgia have a stacked and experienced running back room heading into the 2021 college football season.

Here’s a look at how Summey initially committed to the University of Georgia as a preferred walk-on:

 

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