PUGH OUT WITH SWINE FLU
While Cox tested negative for the H1N1 virus and was able to catch a late flight to Stillwater for the game, the prognosis wasn’t as good for redshirt freshman Makiri Pugh.
The reserve safety also came down with flu symptoms Wednesday, but Richt acknowledged that Pugh tested positive for the H1N1 virus and was not able to travel for the game.
Richt said he was not sure how long Pugh might be out while recovering.
“Even with guys that have had that H1N1, sometimes it’s a quick turnaround, sometimes it’s not,” he said.
The information was a slip of the tongue from Richt, who is typically barred from dispensing health information about players due to privacy regulations. Noting that, Richt refused to discuss whether any additional players had exhibited symptoms or had been tested for the illness.
NEW LOOK FOR D LINE
Georgia’s defensive line had a bit more heft to it during much of the first half of Saturday’s game as tackle Geno Atkins lined up at end, a plan defensive coordinator Willie Martinez said has been in place for a while.
“We don’t have enough depth and Geno is an outstanding player,” Martinez said. “We put our best players on the field any way we can.”
Martinez said Atkins will continue to play both end and tackle for the foreseeable future.
ROOKIES DON’T SEE ACTION
Georgia’s wide receivers struggled to get open against a stingy Oklahoma State secondary, with only sophomore A.J. Green providing any significant productivity.
Michael Moore and Tavarres King were the only receivers other than Green to catch a pass, combining for just 10 yards in the game.
“I think we have guys that can do it,” Cox said of his receivers. “I just missed some people, they had some stuff covered well. That’s just how it was (Saturday).”
Freshmen receivers Marlon Brown and Rantavious Wooten didn’t see any action, and that’s a problem offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said will need to be resolved.
“You’ve just got to play those guys and let them learn through experience,” Bobo said. “I’m sure we’ll talk about that after the game and realize we’ve got to get those guys some more reps. They’re going to make mistakes, they’re young, but we’ve got to get them ready to play.”
SMITH GETS DOUBLE DUTY
Freshman cornerback Branden Smith saw action in all three facets of the game for Georgia on Saturday, which he said surprised even him.
In addition to seeing work at cornerback in nickel packages, Smith returned two kicks and saw significant action on offense. Smith ran the ball three times for 11 yards – once taking a direct snap in a “Wild Cat” package – and caught another pass for a 3-yard gain.
“I really didn’t know that much, but it was a good feeling that I got the touches,” Smith said. “I wish I would have gotten the ball more to help the team out.”
Smith said the performance was bittersweet at best in light of the outcome of the game, but he said he planned to take a positive outlook on the experience.
“I’ve been waiting for this day all my life,” Smith said, “and I think I played pretty good.”