ATHENS, Ga. -- Georgia quarterback D.J. Shockley couldn't believe it. Practice hasn't officially started yet, and already the Bulldogs have lost lineman George Foster to injury.
Foster is expected to be out 12 weeks after dislocating his wrist in an automobile accident while traveling to Athens from his home in Macon.
"I was shocked when I heard about it," Shockley said Tuesday as he and Georgia's other returning players reported to campus. "I was like, that's one of my guys, one my lineman. But now other guys have to step up to take his place."
The Bulldogs, ranked 11th in the preseason coaches' poll, practice for the first time Thursday.
"It's real fun right now, we're about to get back in the swing of things," Shockley said. "It's great to see all the guys again."
Shockley, a redshirt last year, is listed No. 2 on the depth chart behind David Greene, who set several school records for freshmen a year ago. Coach Mark Richt has said both will play, but right now, Greene is the starter.
"It's a fun competition that makes the team better," Shockley said. "It was a lot better for me to sit out last year and watch and learn. At first I thought it was going to be hard, but I learned a lot about the offense, so I'm ready to go this year."
Returning varsity players also reported Tuesday to Georgia Tech, where new coach Chan Gailey has 16 returning starters. Gailey has spent the past decade coaching in the NFL, but he wasn't expecting any problems with scheduling practices around classes.
"Our preseason schedule is very similar to a two-a-day schedule you would keep anywhere, whether it's NFL or college," he said. "The rule is 29 practice opportunities between now and the first game, but we won't even use all 29."
The Yellow Jackets have their own injury problems. Offensive tackle John Bennett, an Atlantic Coast Conference all-freshman selection in 2000, won't be able to play again because of a chronic knee injury, and another tackle, Jeremy Phillips, could be sidelined for good because of a knee problem.
Freshman running back Eddie Lee Ivery Jr., who probably would have redshirted anyway, is out for the season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee during offseason workouts.
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