Expects to hire another linebackers coach
By DAVID HALE
ATHENS, Ga. — New defensive coordinator Todd Grantham isn’t in a hurry to complete his defensive coaching staff, which still has one more opening yet to be filled.
Grantham said he expects the hire to be another linebackers coach – although he said it could be either an inside or outside linebackers coach – but there isn’t a timetable on the hire. The important thing, he said, is finding someone whose personality fits well at Georgia, and he’s grateful to head coach Mark Richt for giving him some say in making the final judgment.
“When you can have access to the hiring, I think all that’s a positive,” Grantham said. “Because coaching is teaching … so I think it’s important to hire good teachers and good motivators and guys who are on the same page to get things done.”
Of course, the hiring of a linebackers coach puts to rest any speculation about the possibility of bringing in a full-time special teams coordinator. That means Georgia will continue to divvy up the responsibilities for special teams among the entire staff – and that’s fine with Grantham’s first hire.
“I’ve been at UConn and coached on all the special teams except PAT and field goal,” said new defensive backs coach Scott Lakatos. “I’ve had specific areas up there, so I’ve had access to those things. I did the same thing at Rutgers and was the special teams coordinator at Maine for a couple years. That’s coaching. It’s no different than defense. Make sure guys know what they’re doing and get out there and play fast and execute.”
Close to home
Lakatos is just beginning to get his feet wet on the recruiting trail, but he said the future isn’t likely to take him back to his roots too often.
Although Lakatos spent his entire coaching career in the Northeast at places like Connecticut, Rutgers and Syracuse, he said his priority now is landing the top recruits in his new home.
“If there’s a player up there that’s interested in Georgia that can help us win an SEC championship, then we’ll go back up to New Jersey or Pennsylvania or wherever it is to see what we can do to get them down here,” Lakatos said. “But my knowledge of this area is that there’s a lot of players in the state of Georgia, so if you can get the players in this state to stay here, you may not have to go too far.”
First things first
Georgia defensive end Demarcus Dobbs is eager to see how the Bulldogs’ new defense will look in spring practice, but that doesn’t mean he’s looking ahead too far. With offseason conditioning about to begin, the grueling pace of mat drills remains first and foremost in his concerns.
“In the back of my head, all the excitement and everything is there, but I know we have mat drills coming around, and that’s been the biggest thing on my mind,” Dobbs said. “But as far as anticipation, I’m just excited to see what’s going to happen, and I’m ready to work.”