ATHENS - All along, Tramel Terry wanted to be at Georgia. That's why he resisted the efforts of his home-state teams the past two years. And that's why Terry desperately wants to be on the field for Georgia's first two games - which are against those same home state teams.
"Every time I'm in the training room I'm thinking about Clemson, trying to get back for them," Terry said Wednesday, a pair of crutches on a seat next to him. "That's my home state."
Terry is a native of Goose Creek, S.C. It used to be that Georgia went into the Palmetto State with regularity to pull out its top prospects, from Richard Seymour to A.J. Green. But the pipeline stopped recently, so when Georgia was able to get a commitment from Terry, the state's Mr. Football for 2012, it was a coup.
But Clemson and South Carolina didn't give up after Terry committed to Georgia in the summer of 2011. It caused Terry to briefly back off his commitment, but he re-affirmed it last year, then enrolled early at Georgia for the spring semester.
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If Terry is healthy, he will likely be on the field in some capacity for Georgia's first two games - at Clemson and then home against South Carolina. But his health is a major question, after he tore his ACL in the Shrine Bowl all-star game in December.
"I feel like I'll be ready," Terry said. "It's too early to call, whatever God wants he's gonna have. So we'll see."
Whenever Terry does play, the Bulldogs are counting on having a dynamic talent - and the kind it hasn't had on offense in awhile.
Terry can play receiver and running back; as a senior at Goose Creek High School, one of the nation's top-ranked teams, Terry caught 48 passes for 792 yards, and rushed for 841 yards on 113 carries. He had 19 rushing touchdowns, and five receiving.
Georgia plans to make use of those talents in a way that it has tried to recently with similar talents. But those players weren't usually on offense.
"They showed me a lot of the things they did with Brandon Boykin," said Terry, who is listed at 5-foot-11 and 193 pounds. "They never really had an offensive player to where they could be a running back (and) could be a wide receiver. That's why they had to go to the defensive side to get some players. (Boykin and Branden Smith). So I feel like I'm a perfect fit for Georgia, because we're limited for guys who are running back and receivers. I'm right in the middle, so I can help out a lot. ...
"I see myself as a hybrid. I feel like I can play running back and wide receiver in the slot," Terry said.
Terry even mentioned playing in the Wildcat, presumably as the quarterback.
"I can help out in tandem with Keith (Marshall) and (Todd) Gurley," he said. "So I feel like I can add a whole other dimension with them."
Now, it's just a matter of when Terry can get healthy enough to do that.