Sunday, July 20, 2008

Countdown to UGA-GSU: 41 Days

#41 Roderick Battle, DE
6-4, 261, Atlanta GA (Douglass HS), Jr.
Battle was a highly recruited 4-star end who committed to UGA during his senior season at Douglass, then spurned a late push from South Carolina to stick with the Dawgs. After a redshirt in 2005, Battle had a nice debut season as a backup, recording 2 sacks (including one big one vs Georgia Tech that season.) As a sophomore he started all 13 games, with 2.5 sacks and 4 tackles for loss. Battle spent part of the offseason as part of a group that went to Honduras with Coach Richt, which you can read about here. Its obvious that Rod is a man of high character, which will serve him well given his upperclass status, and that he'll likely be looked to as a leader.
Depth Chart Analysis: Battle entered the spring as a firm starter at DE, and did nothing to relinquish that position on the depth chart. Alot of fans probably forget about him, and perhaps are looking for someone like Jarius Wynn to push him for a starting spot. Rod was solid in 2007, if not spectacular, and in my opinion deserves to remain the starter. I don't think it is any coincidence that the two scholarship DEs with the most experience (Lomax, Battle) are listed as the starters, with senior (and JUCO transfer) Wynn listed as 1B on the depth chart.

As Battle is the last DE we'll be previewing this year, and we've talked at length about the awesome depth the Dawgs have at this position, I'm wondering what the consensus is about the players we've covered: Battle, Lomax, Wynn, Dobbs, Houston, and Ball. These guys all seem fairly interchangeable to me. None really stick out as a potential superstar like what we've seen in the past (Howard, Moses, Johnson), at least not to this point in their respective careers. Who will be the next superstar in this group?


BayouDawg said...

If Lomax continues his ways from the sugar bowl, then we are gonna have us a stud on the outside, which will only help our lb's to crash in on the qb when martinez finally decides to put the blitz on. i hope we bring the noise this year from a defensive standpoint.

Bop said...

It's hard to say who will end up the next superstar de. All I know is that Coach Fabris always has his guys ready to perform...especially when things click around the time they become juniors. I think Battle might have a great year.

One thing that is certain is that with the dominant talent we have on the interior dline, we will have some d-ends having plenty of opportunities to shine.

Anonymous said...