Jadeveon Clowney will certainly get Georgia’s attention, but the Bulldogs also will have to contend with other guys on the Gamecocks’ defensive.
The other starting defensive end, senior Chaz Sutton, has six career sacks.
Clowney didn’t put up big numbers in South Carolina’s 35-7 beatdown of Georgia last year: four tackles, two tackles for loss, a sack and no hurries or forced fumbles.
Just his presence, though, can impact a game like few others.
“We’re going to have to do some different things against him, but he beats double teams he beats chips, if you’ve got somebody chipping, if you’ve got somebody cutting, he jumps over it,” offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said. “The guy’s a great player. We’re going to have to know where he is, but at the same time, we’ve got to play ball. We’ve got to man up and play ball and whatever we decide to do on that play to handle him, the guy or guys have to do their job. And if he beats us we’ve got to hold onto the ball. We can’t let him do something that can alter the game.”
Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray could think of one other player he’s faced that demands as much attention as Clowney.
“The dude from Auburn a couple of years ago, [Nick] Fairley, that guy,” Murray said. “He was very similar in being able to affect the game.”
Georgia coach Mark Richt harkened back to the days of defensive tackle Warren Sapp playing for Miami in the early 1990s when Richt was at Florida State to find a player that impacted the game like Clowney
“You couldn’t do anything with him,” Richt said. “You could get your plan but he still was going to blow things up because he was just that good.”
Left tackle Kenarious Gates, who faced Clowney last year, is approaching Clowney likes he does other opponents.
“We’re Georgia,” Gates said. “We have a powerful offense. …We’re not trying to run away from this player or that player. We’re just going to do what we do.”
Offensive tackles Kolton Houston and John Theus will be called on to slow down Sutton and Clowney, too.
“I just want guys to play hard and get after it,” offensive line coach Will Friend said.