Joe Tereshinski, Georgia’s senior quarterback who came into this season as the starter, got about 30 messages on his cell phone after Georgia’s 18-0 win over South Carolina. He often gets messages of congratulations after games, but this time he was getting messages of support.
Tereshinski left that game with a high-ankle sprain, and anyone who wished him well should know that he was not listening.
“When I got hurt I got a bunch of messages on my phone – I deleted them,” Tereshinski said with a smile. “I didn’t want to hear it. I didn’t want to hear one of them. I didn’t want to feel sorry for myself.”
It’s not that Tereshinski did not appreciate those who were thinking of him during that time, it’s that he knew he was hurt and wanted to return to “get his job back” as fast as possible – sulking would slow him down.
“If I am going to be a part of this team then I am going to have to be in shape to play,” he said. Tereshinski estimates that he spent eight or nine hours a day in Georgia’s training facility to mend the injury as fast as possible. Now it appears he is back – just in time to help Georgia’s struggling offense.
“Our energy level needs to pick up,” he said before Georgia’s 14-9 win over Ole Miss on Saturday. “If you go back and look at the film we are missing plays by a couple of steps here, or a couple of steps there, or dropping balls or maybe missing one block. When we have that high energy we feed off each other, and we can maintain that block for a second further and gain those extra steps.”
Tereshinski, who did not make excuses for the offensive inadequacies this season, said that the deficiencies must be addressed.
“Those inches we are missing by do count,” he said. “When you put them on each play it totals up to a lot.”
Georgia’s offensive totals have not been adding up, and that is one reason the senior will likely step back into the starting lineup this Saturday night. Georgia head coach Mark Richt indicated Tereshinski would start this week against Tennessee if he is healthy.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if he is (the starter),” Richt said. “We are going to watch Joe T real close. He needs to be full speed to play in the game, or at least to start in it. I want to see how he does before we say anything.”
Matthew Stafford would likely back him up in that scenario. And while Stafford and fellow quarterback Joe Cox have three more seasons after this one to get it right, the senior from Athens understands that this is his final go round.
“This is my senior year, and I am going to treat it as such,” he said.