A Preview: The New Faces of Georgia Football, Part I

Paige SosebeeCorrespondent IApril 6, 2009

ATHENS, GA - NOVEMBER 29:  Georgia Bulldogs mascot Hairy Dawg riles up the crowd before the game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Sanford Stadium on November 29, 2008 in Athens, Georgia.  The Yellow Jackets defeated the Bulldogs 45-42.  (Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images)

A new day has dawned in Athens, GA.

Gone are the days of the deep passes by Matthew Stafford and the jaw-dropping moves of Knowshon Moreno. Spring is ushering in new life for a team that fell short of last year's high aspirations and a fresh sense of hope for 90,000 plus bulldog fans.

Who are the new faces dawning the red and black? Who will step in and bring change to a thirsty Bulldog nation? Who will give it their all each week to earn the dawg bones on their helmets? Talent is deep in Athens, so keep your eyes open Saturday when you enter the stadium to get a glimpse of what is your future.

The offense is stacked at skill positions and looks to be able to bounce back after losing seniors. The name breaking the airwaves over the past couple of weeks is that of Carlton Thomas. Thomas, one of many who are battling for time in the backfield, was rumored to have broken out for a 70 yard run in practice. He is said to have quick moves and daunting speed and only hampered by his smaller size.

Other names to watch for in the backfield are Caleb King and Richard Samuels who will be strutting their stuff on GDay and Washaun Ealy, a first year recruit who could make an immediate impact when he arrives in Athens. The competition is steep, so I am ready to see who will step up and take the reign. I'm thinking we may have another lumpkin/brown duo at RB but not sure who will fill those spots.

At receiver, we have A.J. Green, who is no stranger to the Bulldog Nation and newcomer Marlon Brown. Brown, who has the stature of A.J., also has a set of good hands and nice speed to complement. Look for Rontavious Wooten, another star recruit, to make a splash along with veterans Chris Durham, Israel Troupe, and company. Orson Charles, a TE recruit, should make his mark as part of the receiving corp also. Wooten, Orson and Brown should be available for viewing come fall.

The defense, still plagued with the injury bug, will have some new faces, but will also be missing some veterans on Gday, though most are expected to return for the season. When fall sets in, keep your binoculars on Montez Robinson, a defensive end recruit and five star recruit Branden Smith. Both of these players should see immediate playing time.

The QB position, though no surprise to the masses, will be interesting to see. I have a feeling that though Cox may win the starting spot, Logan Gray will not be far in the shadows. Another dual QB system? Possible, as Logan Gray isn't too shabby, especially his arm and running strengths. Saturday will also be a chance to get a peak at Zack Mettenburger and Aaron Murray, who will more likely than not battle for the future of the Georgia program.

All in all, it is panning out to be an interesting season for the Dawgs. Rebuilding or not, there is no room for excuses in the SEC. These boys have to be ready to face hard-hitting, hungry, and talented opponents, week in and week out. GDay will be our chance to get a look at what is to come and tide us over until the real fun begins.p>