Sept. 19, 2012
ATHENS -- John Jenkins is a big presence on the Georgia team in more ways than one. Standing at 6-3 and weighing 351 pounds, Jenkins is a mountainous physical specimen. It is his personality, however, that has really made Jenkins stand out since coming to Georgia from Gulf Coast Community College in 2011.
The Meriden, Conn., native said that his reputation as one of the Bulldogs' most gregarious characters is an indication of the progress he has made at college.
"It's a blessing and it shows me personally that I've come a long way. A lot of my hard work and a lot of the things I went through are starting to be recognized," Jenkins said. "Since it's started to be recognized. I don't want it to stop here."
Jenkins said that, despite his personable nature, he doesn't think he has a special or unique role among the Georgia players.
"I just see my role as being another player on the team," he said. "I just see myself as wanting to contribute and to help everybody out. We all came back as a defense, we all had dreams and bigger pictures. We all wanted to leave our legacy where it'll be talked about for years."
Trying to build a legacy was a big reason behind so many of Georgia's defensive players returning for their senior seasons. Jenkins said that getting one more year playing together played an equally important role.
"Nobody's trying to stand out alone, it's like a band of brothers. We're all here, we all enjoy playing with one another and we're all working hard for one another," he said. "I like that atmosphere."
During the Bulldogs' 3-0 start to the season, the defense has allowed an average of only 21 points per game. Despite this, the senior nose guard said that they still have plenty to improve on heading into the bulk of their Southeastern Conference schedule.
"We're just trying to be known as one of the top defenses in the country," he said. "In a few games we had a slow start but it's there. Once it hits, it hits and once it triggers, it triggers. We're trying to put pieces together where it can trigger from the first snap of the ball to the last snap of the ball."
While they are no relation, John is no longer the only Jenkins on the Georgia team after the arrival of freshman linebacker Jordan Jenkins. The senior said that looking after the younger Jenkins was a priority for him.
"I'm looking at him right now like a little brother," Jenkins said. "I was talking to Jordan before he came here. We had conversations on facebook, and I had the opportunity to meet his family when they came into town. They wanted me to take him under my wing. It's nice not being the only Jenkins."