Georgia has sold approximately 10,000 tickets for the Jan. 1 game in Orlando, according to ticket manager Tim Cearley. The school’s allotment is 12,500.
Nebraska fans have purchased about 4,000 tickets, according to Cornhuskers athletic director Tom Osborne.
“Not overwhelming,” Osborne said Thursday. “That’s always the problem when you lose that championship game. Our fans were hoping to go to the Rose Bowl, and I’m sure Georgia’s fans were hoping to go to the national championship game. It kind of puts somewhat of a pall on the bowl game. We’ll still have quite a few fans down there, but our ticket sales aren’t probably what they would be.”
Georgia sold about 9,500 tickets for $87 each and another 500 “prime sideline” tickets went for $92. Team allotment ticket prices were set by the bowl, according to Cearley.
Tickets are available through Ticketmaster starting at $35 and going up to $253.
Osborne said when he looked around at last year’s Capital One Bowl against South Carolina, Nebraska may have had close to 20,000 fans on hand, more than double the number of tickets the school sold. Attendance was announced at 61,351.
“The problem is so many people buy tickets now from the secondary market,” Osborne said. “People sometimes feel like you get better location and cheaper prices buying over the Internet. It’s really difficult anymore to assess how many fans you’re really going to have in that stadium.”
No BCS trip for Dallas Lee
If Georgia isn’t going to Miami to play for the BCS title on Jan. 7, offensive guard Dallas Lee won’t be there to watch the championship game.
Lee’s brother, Dillon, is a freshman linebacker for Alabama.
“I’m already going to be in Florida for like a week and a half before that,” Lee said. “There’s only so long you can be in Florida on vacation I guess. I’m going to watch it on TV at the house, but being there, I’m a little bit too upset about it to go have fun at it.”
Lee will root for his brother, who did not play against Georgia. They spoke briefly on the field after the game.
“I told him to have fun in Miami,” Lee said. “Beat Notre Dame. It was about all I could think of. He was looking kind of sad. I was like `Enjoy it. An SEC championship is hard to come by. I understand I’m your brother, but don’t feel bad for me. Enjoy it with your team.’ One of us had to have a crappy day.”
Time to shine
Blake Tibbs and other players who have yet to play or haven’t played much got word from coaches about the importance of Georgia’s bowl practices.
“The coaches definitely let us know for the younger guys that weren’t getting as many reps during the season, they let us know these next 10 days are going to be critical for us,” said Tibbs, a freshman receiver who redshirted. “It’s going to prove to them that you can play and be ready or not. Of course, we’ve still got spring and camp.”
Georgia is preparing to play Nebraska first and foremost, but many bowl practices are ending with scrimmages with unproven players.
“We’ll get a little bit of that, but it’s not like a full-blown spring practice for us,” coach Mark Richt.
Some offensive players who drew mention as standing out by teammates in the two eight-play drives: tight end Ty Flournoy-Smith, tailback Kyle Karempelis, offensive guard Greg Pyke and Tibbs.
Grantham speaks of filling Jones’ shoes
Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham on Thursday spoke as if star junior linebacker Jarvis Jones is indeed heading to the NFL after the Capital One Bowl.
That’s hardly a surprise, but Grantham’s comments during an interview with Atlanta’s 680 The Fan amplified what outside linebacker Jordan Jenkins said a day earlier that those around the program believe Jones is leaving.
Grantham was asked about Jenkins’ role next season.
“We look for him to help continue the tradition of a guy from Georgia being on top of the SEC in sacks next year,” Grantham said. “Obviously he’s got to shoes to fill, but I think he’s more than capable.”
This and that
Receiver Malcolm Mitchell likes the upside of cornerback Sheldon Dawson, who is completing his freshman season. “He’s going to be a great player, just watch him,” Mitchell said. “I see something really different in him… I see his drive, and he wants it. When you got that, you’re going to go get it.” …
guard John Jenkins (concussion), defensive end Abry Jones (ankle) and safety Marc Deas (knee sprain) did not practice Thursday when the Bulldogs held their second straight full pads practice.