Kirby Smart provides update on Georgia QB battle without Jamie Newman; discusses JT Daniels' health
The Georgia Bulldogs lost perhaps their top quarterback option this past week, as Wake Forest graduate transfer QB Jamie Newman decided to opt out of the 2020 season.
That leaves guys like USC transfer JT Daniels, D’Wan Mathis and Carson Beck as the competitors for the starting job for the 2020 campaign.
After Saturday’s scrimmage, coach Kirby Smart discussed the QB battle, saying Daniels and Mathis split first-team reps and Beck went with the 2s a lot (via Rivals.com):
“It’s a work in progress. We had guys today who went out and practiced well. It almost feels like you really want the guys to assume the lead, take the lead, and that hasn’t happened yet. You’re liable to have a great play or a great series, and come back with a boneheaded mistake or a turnover,” Smart said. “Nobody has really just taken charge and taken over. I wish I could say that. Both JT and D’Wan went with the ones today. Carson went with the 2s a lot, then JT and D’Wan went with the 2s a little bit. Stetson went with the 3s. We don’t have a guy who is way ahead. I don’t know what to say other than we’re going to keep competing, and we’re trying to find the best one.”
Smart said Daniels still hasn’t been fully cleared, but he does expect the USC transfer will be given the green light before Week 1:
“I’m under the assumption that is going to happen, but that’s not my decision. Basically, that’s the medical decision. You know he’s cleared to practice, which, for quarterbacks is unique, because they’re not out there getting hit every day,” Smart said. “They’re non-contact. So we expect him to be cleared by the first game. But that’s not a complete certainty. I know Ron (Courson) feels confident that he is far enough post-op, and he has enough strength in his leg to be in a good position to be able to play. But that’s going to boil down to Ron and our doctors making that call.”
This will be a battle that will be closely watched across the SEC. We’ll see who pulls ahead moving forward.