09 02 2004 Notebook

09 02 2004 Notebook

ATHENS -- Freshman offensive lineman Chester Adams earned a nickname -- Big Cheese -- quickly in Athens. Now he's earned some playing time.

"We might get the Cheese in there," Coach Mark Richt said. "We hope to get the Cheese in there."

The 6-foot-4, 330-pound true freshman is the top backup behind tight tackle Dennis Roland. Adams thinks he's ready to go Saturday against Georgia Southern, he said this week.

"It's got a lot to do with my work ethic, and the coaches seem to like it," he said. "I'm a lot further along than a lot of freshmen would be. I know a lot of the offense."

Chester Adams has had to learn quickly. As a second-team tackle, he has most often drawn All-American defensive tackle David Pollack in practice situations this fall.

"It hasn't been a lot of fun for him, Richt said. "He's getting a pinkie on (Pollack) once in a while. He missed him quite a few times."

While the coaches are eager to see Adams work, they're not sure he's ready for full-time duty, Richt said. If Roland suffers a serious injury early in the year, the Bulldogs probably will move guard Max Jean-Gilles back to tackle rather than make Adams a starter.

ANOTHER FRESHMAN: Brannan Southerland is another true freshman who may play against the Eagles, but he doesn't have as good a chance as Adams. Even though Southerland is the Bulldogs' second-team fullback, Richt is hesitant to put him in because he missed almost a weeks worth of practice due to a shoulder injury. Wednesday was the first day in the last 10 Southerland wasn't wearing a green, no-contact jersey.

"He'll get the (medical) OK to play," Richt said. "Whether he gets in or not, I don't know. I don't know if it'd be fair to put him in there yet. You want that first experience to be a positive one." Southerland hopes Richt changes his mind before Saturday.

"I'm ready," he said. "I know the offense."

Southerland was one of the most impressive true freshmen in Georgia's summer workouts with a bench press of 405 pounds, a squat of 660 pounds and a power clean of 341. His total weight lifted was the third-highest on the team. He started fall camp as a linebacker but was quickly moved to fullback.

"I'm really enjoying fullback, he said. I think that's the right spot for me but I'm going to go where the team needs me. "If Williams is injured Saturday, Southerland definitely will play, Richt said.

FILL-IN: Georgia hopes not to have to use Lee Jackson much Saturday as the junior takes the place of Ely-Kelso. Jackson played last year as the team's holder for field goals and extra points, a role he continues to fill this year. Richt said his experience handling snaps will help him against Georgia Southern.

"We're not asking him to hit 50-, 60-yard punts. We aren't expecting him to," Richt said. "We don't want him to try to."

PEP RALLY: Georgia will hold its third First Friday pep rally this week begining at 5:30 p.m. in Stegeman Coliseum. Richt, the entire team and Uga VI will all be in attendance. The first 1,000 fans will receive First Friday T-shirts and fans can register for a Georgia-Florida hotel-and-ticket package. Free parking will be provided in the Carlton Street Deck.

THIS AND THAT: The team's Dog Walk in front of the fans will take place one hour, 45 minutes before kickoff. ... Third-string offensive lineman Trey Chandler will miss the game due to a shoulder injury. ... The Bulldogs expect between 200 and 400 unofficial visitors this weekend between high school players and their families.

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