Kirby Smart Optimistic About Wounded Dogs

Patrick Garbin, Staff
GA Varsity
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Radi Nabulsi

ATHENS, Ga.—During Monday’s weekly press conference, head coach Kirby Smart was asked the circumstances regarding a few players who missed the victory over Vanderbilt with injuries, and another Bulldog who seemingly was injured during the game.

Apparently, you can count on a quick return from junior receiver Michael Chigbu, who did not travel with the team on Saturday for a second consecutive week.

“Chigbu will be out there today [at practice]; we hope to get him 100 percent healthy,” Smart said. “He had a lingering shoulder that had bothered him.”

Senior Reggie Carter suffered what is believed to be a concussion in the Tennessee game and, as was expected, did not play at Vanderbilt; however, the middle linebacker appears to be on the mend.

“Day to day—hopefully today or tomorrow,” Smart said when asked about Carter’s status. “We’ll just check to see how he is today.”

Making his third start in four games, offensive lineman Solomon Kindley appeared to perhaps roll his ankle against the Commodores. If so, it must not have been too serious as Smart said the redshirt freshman was “fine.”

Finally, the head coach was asked the prognosis of standout Trenton Thompson. The junior defensive tackle, who had totaled 17 tackles, including three for loss, missed most of the Tennessee game with a sprained MCL and hasn’t set foot on the field since.

“Trent is recovering,” Smart said. “He’ll be day to day, week to week.”

Smart also indicated that Thompson’s absence at Vanderbilt forced not only the other defensive linemen to play more snaps, but shift to other positions along the line. And, the fact the Bulldogs struggled until the second half to stop the Commodores from converting third downs (5 of 9 on third-down conversions in the first half) resulted in the linemen playing even more snaps.

“The conditioning part had an effect on us Saturday—playing in the heat, and guys playing a lot of snaps,” Smart said. “We just didn’t have many guys to play with Trenton out.”

For Georgia, the hope is that Thompson being “week to week,” according to Smart, means this week, or very soon thereafter—to which the head coach offered a slight glimmer of hope for the defensive lineman’s speedy return.

“We haven’t ruled [Thompson] out for this game,” Smart said. “We hope to get him back. He’s still battling back.”

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