Head coach Kirby Smart comes to Georgia from a program that churns out running backs like no other program in the country, and he feels that’s more by need than want.

According to ESPN Staff Writer Adam Rittenberg, Smart believes SEC defenses take a toll on running backs, but he has a plan for the Bulldogs’ backfield.

Rittenberg said Smart told him on Monday that the ideal scenario for Georgia would be to platoon Nick Chubb and Sony Michel, while grooming another option.

“You can’t get through the SEC unless you have three, and right now, we have one that’s healthy out there,” Smart said. “We’ve got a couple young pups, we signed a guy, but that’s the scariest position because even with Nick at 100 percent, which I don’t think he’s going to be 100 percent right away, we’ve only got two. We want to platoon them. There’s just too much unknown right now on Nick to feel certain.”

Smart feels that way despite the fact that Chubb seems ahead of the curve in his rehab, which has generated optimism in Georgia.

Michel filled in admirably for Chubb last season, rushing for 1,161 yards (5.4 yards per carry) and 8 TDs while also catching 26 passes for 270 yards and 2 TDs.

The “guy” Smart referred to signing in the above quote was running back Elijah Holyfield, a four-star prospect out of Woodward Academy in Atlanta. The 5-foot-10, 204-pounder was rated as the No. 6 prospect at the position in the Class of 2016.