February 2012 Archives


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I have to give credit to my coworker Steve Colquitt for finding this nugget as it is definitely worth sharing! 

According to Georgia Southern's website, a sculptor has been hired to construct a 7.5-foot tall monument of former head coach Erk Russell at Paulson Stadium in Statesboro. Before resurrecting the Eagles' football program, Russell was Georgia's defensive coordinator from 1964 to 1980 and was the architect of some of the Bulldogs' top defensive units in school history. Russell passed away in 2006.

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Weekend wrap-up

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Happy Monday morning, Bulldog Nation!

Hope your week is off to a great start - ours is already off and running with the momentum of an unbelievable weekend in the Athletic Department! Overall, Bulldog teams went 13-2 on the weekend, not even counting some standout individual performances across the board. 

The highlight was probably the men's basketball team's dominating 76-62 win over 11th-ranked Florida in Stegeman Coliseum Saturday afternoon. After the game, head coach Mark Fox discussed his team's effort and their mindset following the loss to LSU in their last outing, while senior Gerald Robinson said he was a good feeling about the Florida game immediately after the loss in Baton Rouge. 

On the women's side, the Lady Bulldogs clinched the No. 3 seed in the upcoming SEC Tournament as they defeated LSU at home yesterday, 62-46. They used 14 points from sophomore Khaalidah Miller to pull away from the Tigers in the regular-season finale, while the game was special for a different reason - as former Georgia men's golf standout and current professional golfer Bubba Watson made good on a bet he had with Andy Landers (because of this shot) and got to serve as a guest coach for the contest.

We caught up with Bubba before the game. He was clearly in the zone. Check it out here

The Diamond Dogs swept Winthrop this weekend at home, while the softball team went a blistering on the weekend in California, a stretch that included three wins over ranked opponents as the team moves to 12-2 on the year.

The Gym Dogs suffered a loss at No. 1 Florida on Friday night, but turned in their second-highest road score of the season with a 196.825. That placed the gymnastics team at No. 4 in the first edition of the RQS rankings that came out today. The RQS rankings used a team's six best scores of the season, three of which are from away meets, and are calculated by eliminating the team's highest score and averaging the remaining five.

The men's and women's track & field teams placed third and fifth, respectively, at the SEC Indoor Championships in Lexington, Ky., with three athletes winning individual titles in Torrin Lawrence (400m), Aaron Evans (800m), and Colleen Felix (triple jump).

Women's tennis won two matches, including a 4-3 thrilled over Memphis on Friday coupled with yesterday's 7-0 rout of No. 17 Clemson. 

Swimming & diving used its Last Chance Meet to improve upon some postseason qualifying marks, while equestrian posted a pair of wins over fourth-ranked Baylor (13-6) and Fresno State (17-1) over the weekend in Athens.

We really appreciated all the love on Twitter (@UGAAthletics) and sent to our individual sport pages... keep it coming!

And speaking of Twitter, here's a chance for something pretty cool. This Thursday night when the men's basketball team travels to take on Kentucky, fans have the chance to interact with ESPN's Jay Bilas using the hashtag #askbilas. Jay will be fielding questions and engaging about college basketball throughout the game, so don't miss out!

Until next time, GO DAWGS and thanks for reading!

A surprise on the sideline...

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Well, as promised, it's Friday at 3:00 and we have some interesting news to dish out here on Between The Hedges.

So... while we were sad to see former Bulldog golfer Bubba Watson fall in the Match Play Championships, something good has definitely come from it! You may remember back in September when Watson and Lady Bulldogs head coach Andy Landers made a friendly wager - Watson would try to hit a golf ball from down on the football field out of Sanford Stadium in exchange for the chance to guest coach a game this season. 

If you haven't seen it yet, and need visual confirmation, you can watch the amazing feat of strength here

With Watson's weekend suddenly opened up, the time is now for the pair to make good on their bet. Bubba is set to come to Athens this weekend and join Landers on the sideline for the women's basketball game as the Lady Dogs take on LSU at home on Sunday at 5 p.m. 

A bit of back story is that, incidentally, Bubba is married to former Lady Bulldog Angie Ball (1997-2000), and they've stayed close with Landers and the program over the years. Of course, there has been some friendly Twitter banter today, with both parties obviously looking forward to Sunday, just as we hope you are. Come out and support the Lady Bulldogs in their home finale and check out a Bulldog legend in a bit of different role!

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Richt previews spring practice

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After a busy month that included National Signing Day and a heavy load of recruiting, among other obligations, head football coach Mark Richt met with a selection of the media Thursday in the team meeting room in Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall to discuss the offseason and to preview the upcoming series of spring practices that commence March 20.

Richt fielded questions on all topics, ranging from how to replace three starters on the OL, to the defense, to the new SEC schedule and more.

Read the full report from Richt's press conference here

A Face in the Crowd

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Exciting news from the world of the Gym Dogs today! Senior Kat Ding has been featured in the Feb. 27 Faces in the Crowd section of Sports Illustrated, which hit newsstands Wednesday.

Ding caught the attention of Sports Illustrated following her performance against No. 3 Arkansas on Feb. 10. In just her second career all-around, Ding placed first with a 39.550 in the Gym Dogs' win. She matched the highest all-around score by a Georgia gymnast since Courtney Kupets and Tiffany Tolnay in the 2009 NCAA Super Six.

A native of Sparks, Nev., Ding had her second straight 39.550 in the all-around last Saturday against Kentucky. The reigning NCAA uneven bars champion also tied for first on vault with a season-high 9.925, on bars with a 9.9 and on beam with a 9.825. She closed the meet with a 9.9 on floor to retain her No. 1 national ranking in the all-around, and is ranked No. 5 on vault, No. 8 on bars and No. 11 on floor.

Faces in the Crowd has been published every week in Sports Illustrated since 1956. The publication posts its Faces in the Crowd selections each Wednesday afternoon at

Ding and the third-ranked Gym Dogs return to action Friday night against No. 1 Florida in Gainesville.

*Interesting note: other Bulldogs included in the publication in the past are:

Anne Marie Armstrong (WBB), Hunter Cole (baseball), Jennifer Dahlgren (T&F), Travis Helgeson (MTennis), Torrin Lawrence (T&F, twice), Michelle Morris (EQU), and Ashley Razey (softball).

Bauerle reflects on (another) SEC title

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VIDEO: SEC Trophy Celebration & Jack Bauerle Dive!

By Steve Colquitt, Associate Sports Communications Director

After leading his Georgia swimming and diving team to another Southeastern Conference title, Coach Jack Bauerle joked that the only thing that went wrong at the meet was his part of the celebration.

Victorious teams traditionally jump into the pool together, followed by a school cheer or song. The head coaches, including Bauerle, jump in last. On Saturday in Knoxville, Bauerle decided to do a flip into the water -- with one tiny issue.

"I think I made it about three-quarters of the way on my flip," Bauerle said, still dripping wet from his plunge. "And I got water in my ear. Let's just say I would not have gotten any diving points."

Truth be told, the Lady Bulldogs garnered plenty of points on their own. Georgia rolled up 781 points to outdistance host Tennessee's 629.5. (That is the equivalent of a 25-point win in basketball.)

The title was the third straight for the Lady Bulldogs and the ninth in school history -- all coming under Bauerle. Three straight championships is the second-longest streak in school history, trailing only the five earned from 1997 to 2001.

"It was a great meet, and I could not be prouder of our ladies," Bauerle said. "It's always nice to get to hold that trophy on the last day. Winning a title in this conference is no small feat. Teams just keep fighting and fighting. That's what I like about our team. We have fighters too, and they don't back down from a challenge. They are a tough bunch. As a coach, you always want to see effort and consistency. That's what we have with this group. They deserve this title. This is a feeling that never gets old.

"It's nice to come back to Athens with the trophy. This is something these kids will never forget."

The Lady Bulldogs won six events during the four-day meet. Wendy Trott took the 1,650 freestyle, becoming the first woman in league history to claim the mile all four years. Megan Romano won the 100 and 200 freestyle. (Romano also placed second in the 100 backstroke, breaking the school record in the process.) Michelle McKeehan was victorious in the 200 breaststroke and Amber McDermott came in first in the 500 freestyle. Georgia additionally won the 800 freestyle relay with Shannon Vreeland, Melanie Margalis, Jordan Mattern and Romano.

After the meet, McDermott was chosen as the SEC Female Freshman of the Year.

"It was a great team effort," Bauerle said. "I'm not sure we had a bad swim, and you can't say that often. Most of the time, we were really good, even great. Everybody had a hand in it, too. That's the main thing in winning a championship. You have to have a lot of depth -- and we are fortunate that we do."

In addition to lapping the field, the Lady Bulldogs assaulted their own record book. Seventeen times in 13 events were top-10 efforts in school history, led by Romano's Georgia mark in the 100 backstroke. And of the 13 set in individual races, 10 were established by underclassmen.

The Bulldogs came in third, fighting off the host Volunteers for the spot. Martin Grodzki won the 500 and the 1,650 freestyle races, while Nic Fink swept the 100 and 200 breaststroke events, and Doug Reynolds claimed the 100 butterfly. Grodzki won the 1,650 freestyle for the third straight year, giving Georgia its eighth consecutive crown in the event. Reynolds became Georgia's first 100 butterfly winner since 1965 when Bo Holland won the event. After the meet, Fink was selected as the SEC Male Freshman of the Year.

Michael Arnold set the school record in the 50 freestyle, eclipsing Georgia's longest-standing mark. Allan Murray set the previous school mark in 1993. (Murray lives in the Bahamas, and Bauerle joked that he and Arnold should break the news to Murray in person.) Arnold, Fink, Reynolds and John Simmons also set the school record in the 200 medley relay. All told, 15 top-10 times were established in 13 events.

"Our men sometimes get overshadowed by our ladies, but they had a heck of a meet too," Bauerle said. "They really battled and gave us great effort. Some of our young guys really grew up at the meet. We're enjoying what's going on right now, and we feel like we have a bright future with our men's team."

The Lady Bulldogs will compete in the NCAA Championships March 15-17 in Auburn as they seek the program's fifth national title, while the Bulldogs will head to the NCAAs in Federal Way, Wash., March 22-24.

ESPNU will televise highlights from the SECs on a tape-delay basis. The men's meet will air Monday, Feb. 27, at 5 p.m., and the women's meet will air Tuesday, Feb. 28 at 5 p.m.

Georgia's teams will be back in action Saturday and Sunday at Gabrielsen Natatorium hosting the Bulldog Last Chance Meet.

Inside the meet: Pink Out and more

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By Aimee Russo, Sports Communications Graduate Assistant

As we gear up for today's annual Pink Out meet, you may not know that the Georgia Gym Dogs' talents extend off the floor.

Junior Christa Tanella had a hand in the new and heart-pumping pre-meet video. In fact, she wrote the script to the beginning of the video, highlighting the strength that the Bulldog nation gives to the team. Be sure to check out the uniquely intense video at the meet as the Gym Dogs take on Kentucky at 4:00 p.m in Stegeman Coliseum.

Another creative Gym Dog, senior Kat Ding, who added a Fashion Merchandising minor to her Advertising major, has designed many of the team's leotards over the last three years, including this week's Pink Out meet uniform. See more about Ding's design skills here.

And did you know that NCAA Gymnastics designated Pink Out meets for all participating institutions after former Gym Dog Talya Vexler was diagnosed with breast cancer at the young age of 23? Survivors like Talya will be honored as they line the vault during introductions tomorrow. Read more about how important the Pink Out meet is to the GymDogs here.

Hope to see all of you out at the meet today supporting the Gym Dogs, but if you can't be there, you can follow along with live video coverage on, including commentary with Kevin Copp and Cassidy McComb with a subscription to GTV, as well as the Gym Dogs Live Chat starting right before the first rotation gets underway.

Oldest swimming record falls

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How about this for a cool nugget? During the SEC Championships on Thursday in Knoxville, Michael Arnold's lead-off split in the men's 200 freestyle relay was 19.49. That eclipsed the school record of 19.57 set in 1993 by Allan Murray. That was Georgia's longest-standing record and the only one not set during the 2000s (the second-oldest is from 2001). After Thursday's session, Coach Jack Bauerle joked that perhaps he and Arnold should deliver the news in person to Murray. Oh yeah, did we mention that Murray lives in the Bahamas?

Not too shabby. Congratulations to Michael and good luck to the Dawgs the rest of the way!

Georgia Bulldogs Facebook Covers!

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For all of you Facebook users out there, the good folks at have created four brand new images that you can download and set as the cover photo on your new Facebook timeline! The images available right now are gymnastics, baseball, football, and men's tennis.

Just follow the instructions here to show your Georgia Bulldogs pride on your Facebook page! ENJOY!


Starting a new streak

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As the men's tennis team prepares to take on in-state foe Georgia Tech today at 4:00 p.m. in Lindsey Hopkins, the Athens Banner-Herald ran an article on the rivalry and how the fourth-ranked Bulldogs are aiming to get back on track vs. Tech after last year's heartbreaking 4-3 loss in Atlanta snapped Georgia's 24-match winning streak over GT dating back to Dan Magill's last season (1988).

To that end, head coach Manny Diaz said, "A lot of our guys are still thinking about last year's match that got away. Georgia Tech was just a fine, fine team. ... Last year, we had the lead in the deciding match, and we served for that match, so it's a painful memory for some of our players and a match we'd love to have back."

Read sports editor Chris White's full story here

In other news, the official UGA Athletics Twitter ran an interesting promotion today to get fans excited for the match, as the latest in their #tweetup series went like this:

@UGAAthletics:  is back! In tennis what do you call a score of 0? Find me at the UGA bookstore entrance & win $20 for a date night in Athens!

...that solicited the following responses:

 it's called love...hello from Asheville, NC

The first 200 fans in attendance today get "Wreck Tech" t-shirts. You can never have too many of those. Good luck to the tennis Dawgs today as they try to start another streak over the Yellow Jackets.

Big win for the Big Dawg.

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On a day when the United States Davis Cup team was playing Switzerland IN SWITZERLAND on indoor clay, former Georgia men's tennis star John Isner took down world No. 3 Roger Federer and ultimately helped the United States to the sweep in first-round action. Isner - currently ranked No. 17 - needed only four sets to take down the 16-time Grand Slam champion. Isner called it the biggest win of his career thus far, and the news resonated quickly around the world, as the Georgia men's team was busy taking on William & Mary back in Athens when it happened. An announcement between doubles and singles delighted the home crowd, a gesture that was insisted upon by the legendary Dan Magill, who still keeps in frequent contact with both John and his mother, Karen.


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Meanwhile, the weekend was a good one for a few others, including football players Jarvis Jones and Bacarri Rambo, who were honored by the Touchdown Club of Columbus (Ohio) at 

its 57th annual Awards Banquet as two of the nation's "Players To Watch" in 2012. Jones, who led the SEC with 13.5 sacks and 19.5 tackles for loss and was second on the Bulldogs with 70 tackles, joined Rambo, who was second in the nation with eight interceptions and who shot to third in Georgia's record books with 157 interception return yards in 2011, and other collegiate standouts at the event. 

And in Georgia golf news, former Bulldog Brian Harman teamed with businessman Gregg Ontiveros to tie for first place in the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am on Sunday. Harman, who played for Georgia from 2006-09, finished 20th in the professional portion of the event, finishing at 7-under 279 including a first-round 8-under 64. He and Ontiveros overcame a three-shot deficit heading into the final round to tie. Notable participants in the event included Bill Belichick, Bob Stoops, and Nick Saban.

That's all for Between The Hedges on this Monday. Check back tomorrow for more UGAAA news!

Grady Students Gain Experience With UGA Athletics

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By Eliot Beckham, Sports Communications/Social Media intern, for "Between The Hedges."

"I strongly believe that the best way to teach journalism is to go out and do it," says Dr. Welch Suggs, as he surveys his students each interviewing a member of the Georgia women's golf team Wednesday at the UGA golf course. "I am a very big promoter of experiential learning, so I wanted to find an environment where students could get a wide variety of covering different events, and also being able to write different feature stories."

Dr. Suggs teaches a class new to the Grady School of Journalism this semester entitled Sports Reporting and Writing. The class gives an opportunity to students who are interested in the field of sports journalism to get hands-on experience interacting with student-athletes and covering events. Last semester, several of Suggs' students attended UGA soccer and volleyball games, conducted interviews, and wrote game recaps on deadline.

"What we're doing with sports in general, we're teaching the reporting skills that any journalist in sports is going to learn: reporting, researching, storytelling across a variety of platforms, and being an honest broker of information - not trying to sell someone a story, but really trying to present the news as we see it," Suggs said.

Events like Wednesday's media session with the golfers, where students played the part of the press in a brief press conference with head coach Kelley Hester before pairing off with the student-athletes for one-on-one interviews, accurately reflect the real process journalists go through on a regular basis. And despite the informal setting of the golf course on a pleasant afternoon, the atmosphere feels professional.

"As a student, I don't really get to do stuff like this very often," says senior journalism major Michael Terry, who is taking the course this semester while also working as an assistant in the UGA Sports Communications office. "There are people on one side of the fence who give the information, the side I've worked on most, and there are people on the other side who want it, so it's definitely different to be on the journalist's side. I think this class is helping me better learn what I can help a reporter with."

Women's golf coach Kelley Hester speaks to Welch Suggs' class.

Students conducted interviews with the golf team and will turn in a feature for class.

For more information, or to read the finished products, visit the course Web site,

Hump Day Wrap-up

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The Georgia track & field teams are set to split up and go three different directions as they make their final preparations for the SEC Indoor Championships Feb. 24-26 in Lexington, Ky. This weekend the Bulldogs will compete at the Husky Classic in Seattle, the Tyson Invitational in Fayetteville, Ark., and the Tiger Paw Invitational in Clemson, S.C. 

Bulldog senior sprinter Torrin Lawrence, who has the second fastest 200-meter dash time (21.12) and the fourth fastest 400 time (46.89) in the SEC this season, is returning to a track in Fayetteville, Ark., this weekend where he has had immense success. He not only won a national 400 crown in 2010, but he also clocked the fourth (45.03), fifth (45.10) and seventh (45.23) fastest collegiate indoor 400 times in history in the facility. Lawrence is the three-time defending 400 champion at the Tyson Invitational and will be going for four straight this weekend.

Click here for a video preview of the meets courtesy of GTV.

In other UGAAA news, the Athletic Board of Directors held its quarterly meeting yesterday, and approved funding for three exciting facility upgrades as improvements continue to abound across campus. Read the full recap of the meeting here.

Last night the men's basketball team poured in 81 points in its win over Arkansas, good for the team's highest SEC output of the season and most points scored in a non-overtime game in 2011-12. The game inspired a lot of chatter on the @UGAAthletics and @UGABasketball Twitter accounts, including the following:

@MouthoftheLyon: @UGABasketball brought home the bacon #beatarkansas

@BulldogBrock: #Dawgs win 81-59! What a huge victory! Way to go @UGABasketball

@UGA_Problems: Proud to be a DAWG! Great job tonight guys! @UGABasketball

A very happy @CoachMarkFox met with the media after the game, saying he thought last night was the first time all season his players got to enjoy the "fruits of their labor."

And finally, something pretty cool was going on yesterday out at the UGA Golf Course. More on that tomorrow here at "Between The Hedges," but for now, here's a sneak preview of what went on on a beautiful February day!


Until next time, GO DAWGS!

The Bauerle and Stafford Connection

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First of all, HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Georgia head swimming coach Jack Bauerle AND former Bulldogs quarterback Matthew Stafford.



But aside from their birthday, the two share another connection. Matthew's father, John, was a graduate assistant coach for the Georgia swimming team in the 1970s when Bauerle was a student-athlete. Bauerle is getting his teams ready for next week's SEC Championships in Knoxville, while Stafford, the Detroit Lions' quarterback, recently was chosen as the Comeback Player of the Year by The Associated Press and the Quarterback of the Year by the NFL Alumni Foundation. Limited to just three games due to injuries in 2010, Stafford started all 16 games in 2011 and led the Lions to a playoff berth. He was 421-of-663 for 5,038 yards and 41 touchdowns in the regular season, then went 28-of-43 for 380 yards and three touchdowns in the playoffs. Stafford became just the fourth quarterback in NFL history to throw for more than 5,000 yards and just the seventh to throw more than 40 touchdowns in a season. He beat out Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers and New England's Tom Brady for the NFL Alumni Foundation Quarterback of the Year honor.


Georgia Football in the Super Bowl (again)

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Congratulations to former Bulldog Danny (D.J.) Ware, who helped the New York Giants to their Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots last night! Ware had one reception for eight yards and one carry for six yards in the Giants' 21-17 win.

In each of the last nine seasons, 23 former Georgia football players have helped their teams to the Super Bowl, and the Bulldogs have been represented by at least one former player in each of the last 11 years. A total of 47 former players have played in the Super Bowl capturing 40 wins.

Ware is now a two-time Super Bowl champ (2008, NYG).

Congratulations to Danny and thank you for representing Georgia on the biggest stage!

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Former Bulldog Danny Ware is a two-time Super Bowl champion.

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Weekend Preview

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Good afternoon, Bulldog Nation! This coming weekend, the Georgia men's and women's basketball teams as well as gymnastics are out of town, but men's and women's tennis and equestrian are set to compete in Athens - so if you've never made it out to one of those events, now is your chance! 

Here's a quick glimpse at what's going on this weekend and how you can stay connected:

-The Gym Dogs are at top-ranked Utah TONIGHT, Feb. 3 at 9:00 p.m. ET. The meet will air on television on a tape-delay basis on CSS on Feb. 12, but you can tune in tonight for live audio coverage on if you've got a subscription to GTV. Kevin Copp will be on the call.

-The Lady Bulldogs are coming off a win over Mississippi State last night, and will turn around to head to Alabama for a 3 p.m. meeting this Sunday. You can catch that one live on SportsSouth. The men's basketball team is at Tennessee tomorrow night (Saturday) for an 8:00 tip on Fox Sports South. As always, both of those games can be heard live on the Bulldog Radio Network and right here on

-Also out of town this weekend is the track & field team, which is in action at Virginia Tech today and tomorrow. And speaking of track & field, here are a few more cool notes courtesy of T&F Sports Information Director Leland Barrow:

*There are five members from the Bulldog track and field teams who are currently ranked in the top 10 nationally in their respective events, including senior Torrin Lawrence who is sixth in the 400m (46.89) and ninth in the 200m (21.18).  However, it is senior Aaron LaGarde who not only has the lowest national ranking of the crew at 10th nationally in the triple jump (51 feet, 7 3/4 inches), but who also is the only Bulldog to lead the SEC in his or her event.  Also of note, freshman pole vaulter Morgann Leleux is the top-ranked freshman in the country with a 13 feet, 8 1/2 inch clearance to her name.

*Senior Cory Holman set a new school record in the heptathlon last weekend at the Razorback Invitational after piling up 5,809 points.  He is No. 4 nationally and in the SEC (10th in the world) with his latest score, which bodes well for a remarkable heptathlon competition at the SEC Indoor Championships in Lexington, Ky., on Feb. 24-26.

Now for the weekend's action happening here in Athens...

-Equestrian resumes its season tomorrow, Saturday, vs. South Carolina out in Bishop. You can follow along with live scoring here, but if you've never made the trip out to the park, it's worth it to see some great competition.

-Both the men's and women's tennis teams are at home for matches as they continue to tune up before their respective trips to the ITA National Indoor Tournament later this month. The men take on East Tennessee State on Saturday at 1PM and the women meet Florida International for the second team in a week Sunday at 11 a.m. The Georgia Tennis Live Chat is ready to go for the match. Or you can come out to the lovely Lindsey Hopkins Indoor Courts!


In other women's tennis news, Jeff Wallace will be online to chat with fans next Tuesday before his team heads to the Indoor Tournament. More information to follow on that.

Hope you all have a great weekend and get to check out some of your favorite teams in action!

Georgia on GMA!

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This morning a very exciting thing happened in Bulldog Nation! One of our own, UGA cheerleader Anna Watson, appeared live in-studio on Good Morning America to talk about her story!

Anna Watson on Good Morning America
Feb. 2, 2012

Anna is a cheerleader at UGA with a knack for fitness. If you've seen the picture of her floating around on the Internet of her flexing her muscles at a football game in her cheerleading uniform, you've seen that Anna's build is unique. She was offered a modeling contract but turned it down when they told her she had to gain more weight, and would have to do so unnaturally since she was having trouble doing it on her own. GMA did a great job telling Anna's story, but the best part was when Robin Roberts remarked on Anna's manners (being called "ma'am") and said, "Well, you ARE from the University of Georgia!"

Click here for the story on Anna that ran in last week's Red & Black.


And a bit more News & Notes from around the UGAAA this week:

-The men's tennis team improved to 3-0 with wins over TCU & Virginia Tech last weekend. All three of Georgia's wins in 2012 have been 7-0 shutouts. The last time a Bulldog team did that? 2007, when Manny Diaz's squad went on to win the national championship with an undefeated record.

There were four former Bulldogs on NFL Pro Bowl rosters over the weekend: Cincinnati's Geno Atkins (DL) and A.J. Green (WR), Oakland's Richard Seymour (DL) and Denver's Champ Bailey (CB), who all suited up for the AFC during its 59-41 win over the NFC. During Sunday's Pro Bowl, Green had two catches for 42 yards, including a 34-yard touchdown, as Atkins, Seymour and Bailey combined for six tackles.  A lesser known fact is that two of the four, Atkins and Bailey, also enjoyed successful careers for Georgia's track and field team. Bailey soared 25 feet, 10 3/4 inches in the long jump at the 1998 SEC Indoor Championships and remains the school's record holder in the event.  Atkins finished seventh at the 2009 SEC Outdoor Championships in the shot put to score for the Bulldogs and later launched a career-best mark of 58 feet, 1/4 inch that same season.


- Four ex-Bulldogs -- Bubba Watson, Harris English, Chris Kirk and Brendon Todd -- made the cut at the PGA Tour's Farmers Insurance Open in San Diego last week. The third round on Saturday was tabbed as "College Day" and golfers were encouraged to wear their school colors -- and the ex-Bulldogs did so. Also, since Watson, English, Kirk and Todd made the cut, Farmers Insurance will be donating $2,000 ($500 per golfer) to the Georgia golf program as part of a pre-tournament pledge.


- UGA swimming & diving coach Jack Bauerle finished the 2011-12 campaign with 194 wins as the men's coach, meaning he will have a shot at No. 200 next season. Bauerle has 277 wins as the women's coach for a total of 471 overall. He is the winningest women's head coach in NCAA history, the winningest head coach for both women and men in SEC history, and the fourth-winningest head coach for both women and men in NCAA history.


- With its win at Alabama last Saturday, the Georgia women's swimming and diving team notched its 26th straight win against SEC competition dating back to 2006-07 season. The Lady Bulldogs have won 46 of 47 against the league since the 2002-03 campaign. The Lady Bulldogs' seniors finished with a career record of 35-2, with both of their losses coming at Texas. 


- AMA, Mitchell dot SEC women's basketball stats: In statistics for SEC games only, Anne Marie Armstrong is the league's most-ranked player and Meredith Mitchell is the fifth-most prominent name listed. Armstrong is included in a whopping 10 of 13 categories kept - No. 5 in assists; No. 6 in scoring; No. 7 in assist-to-TOs, blocks and minutes played; No. 8 in defensive rebounds; No. 9 in rebounding and three-point percentage; No. 11 in free throw percentage; and No. 15 in steals.

Mitchell is ranked seven times - No. 2 in minutes played, No. 5 in defensive rebounds, No. 7 in rebounding, No. 8 in steals, No. 14 in assists, No. 15 in offensive rebounds and No. 27 in scoring.

SEC-Only Individual leaders

Rk.  Player, School    # Cat.

1.    Anne Marie Armstrong, Georgia    10

2.    Lasondra Barrett, LSU    8

       A'dia Mathies, Kentucky    8

       Valencia McFarland, Ole Miss    8

5.    Meredith Mitchell, Georgia    7

       Glory Johnson, Tennessee    7

7.    Jennifer George, Florida    6

       Diamber Johnson, Miss. State    6

       Courtney Jones, LSU    6

- And finally, the drama was all put to rest early this morning when Valdosta native Josh Harvey-Clemons faxed in his paperwork to officially join the football team's 2012 signing class. The highly-touted LB was rumored to have committed yesterday morning, but the paperwork never arrived on Signing Day.

That's all for now here on "Between The Hedges." Have a great Thursday, everybody!

And, the dust settles.

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Phew! Well, it looks like we made it through another Signing Day here in Athens! Easily the most taxing day of the year for those in the college athletics world, it is also the most fun. There's really not another day of the year that brings as much excitement and buzz to campus. We enjoyed every minute of it and we hope you did too!

By far, one of the best moments of the day was when Coach Richt came out to the museum of Butts-Mehre to personally thank all the fans who had packed in to the building to watch the live broadcast. It is always amazing how many people are willing to take a day off from work to enjoy this day and show their support, but not to be lost is how much it truly means to the staff. As Coach Richt said in his afternoon press conference, Bulldog Nation is real and today is one of the biggest displays of it.

Coach Richt thanks the Bulldog Nation on Signing Day.

And here is the museum now. All cleared out.

There was just so much going on today, between extra media being around (special shoutout to Cara Capuano from ESPNU and the SEC Network for coming!), fans everywhere, every office being fully staffed and in overdrive, and trying to keep everything organized... but now that it's over we can look back at what a great day it was! The Bulldogs are very happy with the class that was signed, and you never know what might trickle in later.

Just to prove to you that we worked hard today (ha!), below are some links to the great coverage that the folks at IMG and provided. If you missed anything, please check it out!

And please come back to "Between The Hedges" for more posts on all your Georgia sports teams! GO DAWGS!

PHOTO BLOG: Setting the scene

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Good morning, Bulldog Nation! HAPPY NATIONAL SIGNING DAY! If you are following us on Twitter (@UGAAthletics), which you should be for the most up-to-date signing day information, be sure to use the hashtag #GeorgiaNSD to follow all the action as it unfolds.

I thought I would give you a little-behind-the scenes glimpse into what's going on here in Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall, though it's not yet 8:00 and the sun isn't fully risen.

Parking Services keep the peace outside Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall

As fans start to arrive, they can grab breakfast and coffee on the house!


The set-up for the GTV live broadcast set to air on


The early-arriving UGA beat writers. Hard at work as usual.


And finally, the fax machine! We'll be watching this all day long waiting for those letters!

Well, that's all for now. Stay with us throughout the day! And head on over to the front page of where our GTV live broadcast and the live chat are underway!


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