Quarterback Commits To UGA, Spring Battle Looms

Greg PooleContributor IDecember 23, 2009

Lassiter High School quarterback Hutson Mason announced his commitment to Georgia Tuesday night on the TV program "In The Huddle" on Comcast Sports South network. The program was actually taped a week ago but Mason managed to keep it quiet. Few knew of his decision other than the Bulldog coaches.

Mason at 6' 3" 195 pounds will get bigger and is an extremely accurate passer. In a playoff game this year he completed 32 of 39 passes for 522 yards - 5  touchdowns with 1 interception. Not bad.

The interesting development resulting from his decision is the impact on the Dawgs quarterback situation in the spring. Mason is aware that he will red-shirt next year barring injuries to the other quarterbacks. Georgia has three potential starters at the position going into spring practice:

  • Logan Gray (Columbia, MO) a red-shirt junior (in 2010)  played in 10 games in 2009 but most of his work was as a punt return specialist and, inexplicably, on the kickoff cover team. There have been rumors all year that he may move to wide receiver for 2010. In fact, many believe that his lack of progress as a quarterback is what prompted UGA to sign a quarterback in the 2010 class. Gray is an excellent athlete with good speed who can help the team in multiple roles. The question is will he transfer if he does not win the starting QB job in spring or will he stay and contribute at wide receiver.
  • Zach Mettenberger (Watkinsville, GA) will be a red-shirt freshman next fall. Of course, as a red-shirt freshman this year he did not appear in any games. Mettenberger was thought of as a project coming out of high school but has all the tools. At 6' 5" 230 pounds, his arm strength is often compared to Mathew Stafford. Offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Mike Bobo says Mettenberger has made tremendous strides since he arrived at UGA but still has work to do.
  • Aaron Murray (Tampa, FL) is the young man who you saw standing near Mike Bobo on the sidelines signalling in plays to Joe Cox (a job usually reserved for the next-in-line at quarterback). Murray piloted Tampa Plant to a state championship in his senior year even though he suffered and recovered from a broken leg during the season.  Aaron came to UGA as a blue chip prospect and has lived up to that billing this year. Murray, a red-shirt freshman next fall, is seen by most observers as having a big lead in the race for the starting job. Of course, there will be a healthy competition in the spring and fall but it is probably fair to say that the job is his to lose.

Although Georgia will begin the 2010 season with an untested quarterback for the second consecutive year, the future looks bright for the Dawgs.