NASHVILLE, TN- Once again, Georgia sent lots of talent to the NFL after their second-straight national championship. They’re going to have to replace the production and leadership of guys like Stetson Bennett, Christopher Smith, Broderick Jones, Nolan Smith, Jalen Carter, and Kelee Ringo.
Brock Bowers, Kamari Lassiter, and Sedrick Van Pran were the three player representatives for the Dawgs at SEC Media Days. They all spoke to stepping up as leaders with this new squad.
“So to be honest with you, I think leadership has always been important to me for the simple fact of — it’s going to sound weird, but I’ve always just cared about the guys that I put in time with,” Van Pran said.
Van Pran is returning for his senior season despite receiving a lot of interest from the NFL. Kirby Smart said that his love for UGA and this team is what enticed him return for his last year of eligibility.
After two stellar seasons, Bowers is potentially on his way to a Heisman campaign as a junior in 2023. He is now the longest-tenured tight end on the roster with the departures of Darnell Washington and Ryland Goede. Now entering his last season in a Bulldog uniform, he is tasked with mentoring young tight ends Oscar Delp (So.), Lawson Luckie (Fr.), and Pearce Spurlin (Fr.).
“Now I’m the old guy in the room somehow, and I feel like time flew by, and I feel like just yesterday I was sitting in the same seat as those freshmen,” Bowers said. “So I’m trying to help those guys the best I can and lead by example, and I guess just maybe try to be a better vocal leader and say something when something needs to be said.”
Kamari Lassiter is now considered the No. 1 cornerback on the roster after the Bulldogs sent off Kelee Ringo to the NFL draft this year and Derion Kendrick the year before.
Lassiter is being given the task to help lead the defensive back room and keep that hunger alive.
“I would say really one of the challenges would be just keeping our head down and just maintaining a good work ethic and keeping the right mindset and attacking everything the right way,” Lassiter said.
If the Bulldogs can overcome their off-season mistakes and maintain their connection and hunger within the locker room, they have a great chance at winning their third-straight national championship.