Notebook: Murray chasing rings, not individual accolades

Two Georgia offensive players were selected for SEC weekly honors on Monday.

Notebook: Jones, Crowell nab SEC honors
Marc Weiszer

Neither was named Aaron Murray, the Georgia quarterback who threw four touchdowns while completing 14 of 18 passes for 224 yards in a 45-7 romp over Auburn on Saturday.

Murray didn’t get the SEC award a week earlier either after tossing five touchdown passes in the second quarter of a 63-16 win against New Mexico State a week earlier.

“Whatever,” the redshirt sophomore said with a laugh Tuesday. “A win’s a win. I’m happy Ben (Jones) and Isaiah (Crowell) got their awards. It happens.”

Jones was named the conference’s offensive lineman of the week and Crowell freshman of the week. Murray didn‚Äôt make the list of other outstanding performances either.

Murray’s 255.6 pass efficiency rating against Auburn was the highest of his career.

Vanderbilt’s Zac Stacy was SEC offensive player of the week after rushing for 135 yards and three touchdowns in a 38-8 win over Kentucky.

Murray leads the SEC and is 12 th nationally in passing efficiency.

His 27 touchdown passes are tied for eighth nationally, just two behind Stanford’s Andrew Luck and four behind Oklahoma State’s Brandon Weeden and Boise State’s Kellen Moore.

“I don’t really care,” Murray said. “The only thing that matters right now is getting back to Atlanta. I said at the beginning of the year I could throw 20 interceptions and five touchdowns—I’d probably be benched if I did that—but I just want to get back to Atlanta. I want to be able to compete for an SEC championship. I want to send these seniors out on the right note and get some rings.”

His teammates have at least noticed.

“I think he’s played lights out these last two weeks,” tight end Aron White said. “Accolades or not, that’s something we’re proud of.”

Butler inconsistent but soaking up team’s success

Senior punter Drew Butler didn’t make the 10-person list of Ray Guy semifinalists after winning the award for nation’s top punter in 2009 and being a finalist last year.

“Not the best year,” Butler said. “It’s as simple as that. It’s been inconsistent. I feel like a few punts, maybe four or five punts have really affected our punt team statistics and our individual statistics.”

Butler is averaging 42.4 yards per punt, down from 44.5 last year, but Georgia is one win away from its first SEC championship game appearance since 2005.

“It’s different,” Butler said. “In the past, I’ve had a pretty high level of success but the team hasn’t had a high level of success and now I’m doing OK, but the team’s doing great. I really wouldn’t trade it for anything else.”

Georgia has gone from fourth last year in net punting to 107 th out of 120 FBS teams at 33.62.

Coach Mark Richt called that more of “a team thing.” He said Butler “really hasn’t done a whole lot different this year than he has done every year. The difference is that we didn’t run down the field and tackle well.”

Sturdivant among seniors to be honored Saturday

Georgia will honor 24 players in senior day ceremonies on Saturday, including four players whose careers were cut short by injury.

Neland Ball (back), Jeremy Longo (knee and shoulder) and Jonathan Owens (knee) were medically disqualified.

Offensive tackle Trinton Sturidvant, who missed this season after his third knee injury, also will be recognized.

Richt wasn’t sure of his future plans.

“I’ve talked to him over the course of the season and they’ve kind of bounced around a little bit like a lot of guys his age trying to decide what’s best,” Richt said. “It’s been anything from continuing school to maybe getting out and getting some work experience as he tries to prepare to get into law school.”

As far Sturdivant considering football again, Richt said “I don’t know. He was talking about playing tight end, too, so who knows?”

This and that

Crowell was not at practice Tuesday during a 15-minute portion open to the media because “he had to finish some things up in the training room,” running backs coach Bryan McClendon said, but Crowell later practiced without limitation. …Nose guard Kwame Geathers (ankle, knee) did not practice, but Richt has said he’s hoping Geathers will play.

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