Georgia LB Rennie Curran: The Most Dominant Defensive Player In The Game

Wes HoltzclawCorrespondent IAugust 17, 2009

NEW ORLEANS - JANUARY 01:  Colt Brennan #15 of the Hawai'i Warriors is sacked by Roderick Battle #41 and Rennie Curran #35 of the Georgia Bulldogs during the Allstate Sugar Bowl at the Louisiana Superdome on January 1, 2008 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Georgia won 41-10. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

If Rennie Curran has done one thing since he stepped foot on the Georgia campus in Athens, its make plays.

He has literally been a tackling machine on the Dawgs defense since 2007.

The 5′11″ 222-pound linebacker has a combination of speed and power that makes opposing offenses cringe.

They know that if they want to get any yards on a certain play they need to have No. 35  blocked.

Curran, a junior from Snellville, first played in 2007 as a true freshman starting in five of the 11 games that he played. In his first start, against Florida, he totaled five tackles with two tackles for a loss.

He ended his freshman campaign with 53 tackles, nine tackles for loss, and three sacks which landed him Freshman All-American honors.

During his sophomore season, Curran started all 13 games and led the Dawgs in tackles nine times. In five of those games he registered double-digit tackles, including a career high of 15 against Kentucky. 

Curran ended the 2008 season with a team-leading 115 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, and 3 sacks garnering him a first team All-SEC selection.

Not only was he named the team’s MVP on defense, but he finished as a finalist for the coveted Butkus Award given to the nation’s top linebacker.

Curran was also named “the most dominant defensive player in the game” by the Sporting News Magazine after the 2008 season.

Does he deserve that title?

There are probably players that have more tackles, tackles for loss, or even sacks. The reason he was given this label is for the simple fact that offenses have to know where he is on every play, at all times.

Curran enters his junior year on several watch lists including the lists for the Lombardi award and the Lott trophy respectively.

He anchors a defense that in 2009 wants to redeem itself after a pour 2008 showing.

Don’t be surprised if Curran ends up with double-digit tackles in all 12 games this season since he is going to have DT’s Jeff Owens and Geno Atkins eating up double-teams so that he can fly to the ball.

With MLB Akeem Dent, SLB Darryl Gamble, MLB Marcus Washington, and SLB Darius Dewberry joining Curran as Georgia’s line-backing corps, the Dawgs are sure to have the deepest and most talent group of LB’s in the SEC if not the country.


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