Originally created 10/01/00

Georgia notebook



FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- The more moves Bruce Thornton shows taking handoffs, the more confidence Georgia coach Jim Donnan gains in his redshirt freshman.

Thornton rushed 14 times for 54 yards Saturday in the Bulldogs' 38-7 win over Arkansas. And as Donnan searches for consistency in his running back rotation, he may have found the ideal mix between Thornton's shiftiness and Jasper Sanks' size.

Sanks missed the New Mexico State game because of an ankle injury, and he returned Saturday to carry 12 times for a game-high 56 yards and two scores.

"In Bruce, you've got a guy who's as quick as a hiccup," Donnan said. "He's able to keep defenses off-balance a bit, while Jasper can run between the tackles. We're getting the rotation down pretty much."

Thornton did not have a carry in Georgia's loss to South Carolina, as Donnan did not have much trust in the youngster during his first SEC road game. Thornton responded with 69 yards on nine carries in the win over New Mexico State, and he's done nothing to displace himself from the Bulldogs' backfield.

KICKED OFF: Walk-on freshman kicker Billy Bennett from Athens Academy has secured his position as Georgia's placekicker by converting a field goal and five extra points.

Brett Kirouac had been Georgia's kicker the first two games, but he's been relegated to kickoff specialist. After Kirouac's fourth straight touchback, Donnan ran onto the field to high-five him.

Punter Jonathan Kilgo had an exceptional game, helping Georgia win the game of field position. Arkansas's average starting field position was its own 17-yard line.

WHERE'S CEDRIC?: Arkansas' Cedric Cobbs spent Saturday in a Fayetteville hospital, a day after undergoing season-ending surgery to repair his separated shoulder.

The SEC's fourth-leading rusher suffered what Arkansas doctors called "the worst shoulder separation they'd seen" in the win over Alabama.

Cobbs' replacements, Alvin Ray and Brandon Holmes, proved why they are third- and fourth-string backs, gaining 50 yards on 19 carries between them.

NEW LOOK: The next time Georgia plays in Fayetteville, they might not recognize the new surroundings. Razorback Stadium is undergoing an $82 million renovation that will enlarge the seating capacity to more than 72,000 seats.

An upper deck is being built on the visitor's sideline, and that should be ready for the 2001 season. And next time, the Bulldogs will not have to dress in the indoor practice facility, nor walk more than 200 yards over a football field and a gravel road to reach the playing field. Future plans include enclosing the stadium, making capacity exceed 80,000.