Gates' Versitility Pays Off
Kenarious Gates

Posted Nov 7, 2012


ATHENS - Kenarious Gates has started every game this season at left tackle for Georgia, but his versatility came in handy against Ole Miss and could again Saturday against Auburn.

Gates shifted to right guard in the second half of the Bulldogs' 37-10 win after Chris Burnette had to leave the game with a left shoulder injury.

Burnette didn’t practice Tuesday, but coach Mark Richt said “it’s not out of the question,” that the junior could still play Saturday.

With Burnette out, Gates worked at left guard in practice Tuesday. Dallas Lee, who has started every game at left guard, moved to Burnette’s right guard spot.

Gates prefers to play tackle, but played left guard last season and has worked there this season when Mark Beard has come in at left tackle.

Gates is ready to pitch in again there against Auburn.

“I have fun at both positions,” he said. “There are different people you go against. At tackle you, go against speed. At guard, you go against the power. You’ve got to be ready for both.”

Georgia’s offensive line is looking for a better showing this week after quarterback Aaron Murray was sacked five times last week.

He came in for treatment on Sunday.

“Lots of Advil, stretching, yoga, ice baths, yeah,” Murray said. “It’s the usual.”

At least he’s getting a dinner out Thursday from center David Andrews.

“He said if they give up a couple of sacks, he’ll take me out to dinner once during the week,” said Murray, who treats his line to ice cream when they protect him well. “If it’s on David, I’m getting some good stuff.”

Shooting hit home

The news that three people—including two former Auburn football players--were killed in a shooting at an apartment complex close to that campus this past June hit close to home for Georgia safety Josh Harvey-Clemons.

Former Auburn offensive lineman Ed Christian was one of the players who died. Harvey-Clemons and Christian were teammates at Lowndes High School in Valdosta.

“I saw it on the news,” Harvey-Clemons said. “It was crazy. Just thinking something like that would happen to somebody you’ve been around. …We were close, but we didn’t hang out all the time. I know his Dad is a police officer down in Valdosta.”

Georgia tight end Jay Rome, a redshirt freshman who attended rival Valdosta High, said he knew Christian.

“Valdosta’s not that big of a city,” he said. “We were actually friends with a lot of each other even though we went to different schools. I knew Ed. It was crazy what happened, man.”

Rome said he threw shotput and discus against Christian in track meets and talked between events.

Harvey-Clemons’ grandfather, Woodrow, attended Christian’s funeral at Mathis Municipal Auditorium in Valdosta, said Josh, who was already in Athens for summer school and workouts. The shootings occurred after a fight at a pool party.

“He was a great guy,” Harvey-Clemons said of Christian, who was medically disqualified from football due to a back injury. “He came to my school from Thomasville. He started since his freshman year. One of the biggest guys on the team, real positive. Never was in trouble or anything like that. That’s why it shocked me that he was shot. He was a pretty much a great all-around player really.”

Murray handicaps possible Bama matchup

There will be no Murray vs. Zach Mettenbeger quarterback matchup in the SEC championship game this year after Alabama knocked off LSU 21-17 on Saturday.

“We joked about it all summer how crazy that would be if we were able to play them in the SEC championship,” Murray said. “That would be the big headlines all week long would be about that.”

Murray said he’s texted Mettenberger, his former Georgia teammate from Watkinsville, during the year.

“Mostly it’s to make fun of his mustache and he’d make fun of my new sleeves and stuff like that.,” Murray said.

Georgia and Alabama, which hosts Texas A&M Saturday, will clinch their spots in the league title game with victories this weekend.

Murray was asked about a possible game with the Crimson Tide.

“I bet they’re going to be huge favorites going into the game and rightly so,” Murray said. “They’re undefeated, they’re the No.1 team in the nation. …That’s still four weeks away. We still have to do our part. They have to do their part.”

This and that

Chris Conley, who has played some slot receiver in Georgia’s three-receiver set, will get the majority of the reps there now with Marlon Brown lost for the season with a torn ACL, offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said Tuesday night. Justin Scott-Wesley and Taylor Bradberry will also work there.

Georgia confirmed Tuesday that the Nov. 17 game against Georgia Southern will air on WSB-TV Channel 2 in Atlanta. Kickoff was previously announced at 1:30 p.m. Bob Neal, Darryl “D.J.” Jones and Zach Klein will be the on-air talent.

Fullback Merritt Hall (ankle) was limited in practice Tuesday.

Richt’s son, David, will sing the national anthem before the Georgia men’s basketball team’s home opener on Friday night. “Don’t heckle him,” Richt said.


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