2005 RECORD: 10-3 (6-2 in SEC East) RETURNING STARTERS: 9
RB Thomas Brown (Jr.)
Ran for 736 yards and four TDs in '05
T Dan Inman (Sr.)
Gigantic (6'7", 328 pounds) three-year starter opens season on two-game suspension for violating team policy
K Brandon Coutu (Jr.)
SEC's leading scorer last season made all 45 extra-point attempts and 23 of 29 field goal tries
Big Man on Campus
The best pass rusher in the conference, defensive end Quentin Moses put off his NFL career so he could terrorize college quarterbacks for one more season. He'll be attempting to surpass the 11 1/2 sacks he racked up last year in his first season as a starter.
Whether the Dawgs are great or merely good may hinge on the play of tough-as-nails QB Joe Tereshinski
Joe Tereshinski Sr. had a knee replaced a couple of years back, and he missed some workouts over the summer. "Normally I try to walk two miles every day," he said recently, "but the heat's been terrible." Tereshinski, 82, was looking a trifle nervous, but that's to be expected. Georgia's fortunes in '06 may depend largely on the success of his grandson Joe III, a fifth-year senior who is the favorite to succeed D.J. Shockley as the starting quarterback. At the start of training camp Tereshinski had a slight edge over three other passers, including freshman Matt Stafford, the gem of Georgia's most recent recruiting class and the program's quarterback of the future.
A third-generation Bulldog -- his grandfather, his father (Joe Jr.) and his uncle Wally all lettered in football -- Tereshinski has started one game in a career marked by a willingness to do whatever it takes to get on the field. He has even logged time as the blocking back on the punt team and as a backup long snapper. "I really enjoy the physical aspect of the game," he says. "I think that helps me when I'm in the pocket."
As a quarterback Tereshinski is more Trent Dilfer than Troy Aikman: a solid passer with decent mobility who will be called upon to manage games, not to take them over. Dawgs fans can be comforted by the fact that the strength of the offense is a mere handoff away. Tailbacks Thomas Brown, Kregg Lumpkin and Danny Ware combined for 1,575 rushing yards last season; each of them, according to coach Mark Richt, would be capable of rushing for well over 1,200 yards if he were the team's featured back.
"I think we are going to be a pretty good team," says Richt, who has made the Bulldogs a fixture in the top 10 during his five seasons in Athens. "Whether or not we are a really great team will depend on how our seniors lead us."
Joe Tereshinski Sr. is optimistic. "We're hoping for great things," he says. So is his grandson. -- Austin Murphy