The NCAA Legislative Council passed a rule Tuesday that will allow schools to provide unlimited meals and snacks for college athletes, but it will be anything but an all-you-can-eat offseason for the Georgia football team.
Defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt is exiting spring practice the same way he entered it, wanting his players to continue to reshape their bodies to get leaner to last for four quarter.
‚ÄúThat‚Äôs going to be the No. 1 thing,‚Äù defensive line coach Tracy Rocker said. ‚ÄúWe‚Äôre going to have to trim them all down. This league is a lot of no-huddle. We can‚Äôt be 330 pounds out there. We‚Äôll get that done, but it‚Äôs going to be up to them to do it, too. We‚Äôve got time, but it‚Äôs going fast.‚Äù
Added Pruitt: ‚ÄúI think as we go through we‚Äôll see who works this summer, who goes out and trains because a lot of our guys have got to get their weight under control. We‚Äôre too big in my opinion. We‚Äôve got to get a little smaller. Some guys have got to cut body fat. Some guys need to put on a little bit of muscle. We‚Äôll see how everybody comes back summer conditioning and see where we‚Äôre at a couple of weeks into fall camp.‚Äù
With fast-tempo offenses, Pruitt wants his players to be able to hold up down after down.
‚ÄúYou can‚Äôt eat dollar meals and think you‚Äôre going to play this game and be in great shape,‚Äù Rocker said.
The days of players hovering around 350 pounds like John Jenkins and Kwame Geathers did during a 2011 season are when
Georgia reached the SEC championship game.
‚ÄúThey go to the championship (game) and you turn on that tape, the first thing everybody (sees) is they couldn‚Äôt get off the blocks,‚Äù Rocker said.
He rattled off a schedule that Georgia needs to get in shape for: ‚ÄúClemson, no-huddle. South Carolina, some version of no-huddle. You got Auburn, some versions of no-huddle. Everybody‚Äôs got a bit of it. It‚Äôs hard to get a 350-pound man off the field. That‚Äôs not going to be very smart. We‚Äôve got to make sure we‚Äôre very well-conditioned.‚Äù
It‚Äôs not just the big guys. Pruitt mentioned senior cornerback Damian Swann as one of those guys who needs to get in better shape.
‚ÄúTo me if you‚Äôre in shape then you don‚Äôt make mental errors,‚Äù Pruitt said. ‚ÄúFatigue makes a coward out of everybody. We‚Äôve got to get in shape as a football team. We‚Äôre nowhere where we need to be. We‚Äôve got to improve on that. Coach T (strength coach Joe Tereshinski) will do that this summer.