Georgia‚Äôs No. 2 offensive line had a different look two weeks before the opener: Mark Beard at left tackle, Watts Dantzler at left guard, walk-on Preston Mobley at center, Austin Long at right guard and Kolton Houston, who was ruled ineligible by the NCAA for testing positive for a banned substance, at right tackle.
Long had not secured the backup left tackle spot and offensive line coach Will Friend ‚Äúwanted to see Beard on the edge a little bit,‚Äù head coach Mark Richt said. ‚ÄúWe know he‚Äôs athletic. We thought maybe going inside would help Long, we don‚Äôt know. We thought we‚Äôd just take a peek.‚Äù
Richt said his early impression of Beard, a junior college transfer, is that he showed quickness to pass protection plays but has to improve at blocking defenders in space.