ATHENS, Ga. — Georgia is down to just “Gurshall” heading into spring practice among tailbacks that were recruited to the school on scholarship.
Redshirt sophomore Ken Malcome, the team’s third-string tailback, has decided to transfer, the school announced Wednesday.
“I have made this decision because I think I can get more playing time some place else,” Malcome said in a statement. “I have enjoyed my time at Georgia and appreciate the opportunity that coach (Mark) Richt and the other coaches have given me here. I look forward to my next challenge.”
Malcome, from Decatur, Ga., rushed for 274 yards and two touchdowns this past season.
He started the season opener against Buffalo, but his carries were limited with the emergence of freshmen Todd Gurley (1,385 yards and 17 touchdowns) and Keith Marshall (759 yards and eight touchdowns).
Malcome did not play in four games this season, including the SEC Championship Game and the Capital One Bowl. He started twice in the 2011 season when he briefly quit the team but returned and finished with 174 rushing yards.
“We are very appreciative of Ken’s contributions to our program and will certainly assist him any way we can in finding a school to continue his career,” Richt said in a statement. “We wish him nothing but the best.”
Georgia already lost seldom-used senior tailback Richard Samuel, leaving former walk-on Brandon Harton as the third-string tailback this spring.
Georgia has a commitment from one tailback in this recruiting class: A.J. Turman, from Boone High School in Orlando. Early enrollee Tramel Terry from Goose Creek, S.C., can play tailback, but he’s coming off ACL surgery and won’t practice this spring.
Norcross tailback Alvin Kamara is considering Georgia and Alabama.
“Competition is no problem with me,” Kamara said in December about fighting for playing time in college.
NOTE: Starting offensive guard Chris Burnette appears likely to be out for spring practice.
Burnette underwent surgery this week to repair a torn labrum, he posted on his Twitter account. Georgia has said it will have details on player surgeries later this week.
“Thanks everybody for the prayers,” Burnette tweeted. “Shoulder is feeling better already. Long road to recovery, but I’ll be back and better than ever.”
Burnette missed two games in November with a shoulder injury.