Ernest Jones is a native of Waycross, Georgia and played football at Ware County High School. He admitted that there’s a lot of red and black fans in that area of the state, but he doesn’t claim to be a resident of Bulldog country.

The South Carolina linebacker, who has been a pleasant surprise for the Gamecocks this year, is excited to return to his home state and play the Bulldogs on Saturday in Sanford Stadium for a noon kick off against Georgia. He’s never been a Bulldog fan.

“It’s nothing personal,” he told reporters, including Josh Kendall of The Athletic. “Everybody where I’m from loves Georgia. Not me. I definitely wanted to be different. I can’t wait for Saturday.”

Jones is the leading tackler for South Carolina with 38 tackles, and is eighth in the SEC. He also has two breakups and had an interception in the last game against Kentucky. He made two tackles for a loss against Alabama.

Jones has fit nicely into a key role at linebacker, and he’s been a rising star since the spring, when he was named the “Most Improved Player” for special teams.

Georgia has won four straight in this series, including last year’s 41-17 decision in Columbia. The Gamecocks are about 24.5-point underdogs in the game, which is set to air on ESPN.