Spring practice wrapped up on Saturday for the Georgia Bulldogs with its annual G-Day Scrimmage. The Red team defeated the Black team 31-26. The Red team was made up of the first-team offense and second-team defense and the Black team was made up of the second-team offense and first-team defense. The scrimmage gave Georgia fans an up-close look at the quarterback competition between Carson Beck (red team) and Brock Vandagriff (black team). Beck took all of the reps with the first-team offense in the first half and finished the day 15-20 for 231 yards and a touchdown. Vandagriff finished 13-25 for 175 yards. Twitter and the message boards, always reliable sources, were quick to anoint Beck as the new starting quarterback. This left others to ponder if Vandagriff will enter the Transfer Portal this spring. While we haven’t confirmed if The Clash is on Vandagriff’s Spotify playlist, the band’s song offers insights into the quarterback’s decision.
If You Say That You Are Mine, I’ll Be Here ’till The End Of Time
Vanadgriff’s first option is to stay. Smart could name him the starter and he can take the reigns of Gerogia’s offense. That though is unlikely to happen. The quarterback competition was was one of the biggest questions heading into the Spring for Georgia. While Twitter and the message boards were quick to tap Beck as the next starter, Kirby Smart was more diplomatic. “I was really pleased with all three quarterbacks. What you saw today was similar to what we’ve seen all spring. We have three really good quarterbacks who can make the throws and do a really good job. I was pleased with those guys.” Gunnar Stockton is the third quarterback that Smart mentioned. Stockton worked exclusively with the second-team offense Saturday.
For Vandagriff, Smart’s comments show that he will not be making a decision on who will be the starting quarterback until the Fall. Vandgriff felt he had some ups and downs on Saturday, but provided the coaches with an opportunity to showcase his skills this Spring. “I put together a pretty good Spring. I just took it one day at a time, when I woke up this morning, I was like gah-lee this is the last day of Spring, and decided to get up and go after it.”
The quarterback competition has pushed Beck and Vandagriff. This could lead to friction between the quarterbacks and/or in the locker room. There was no sign of that on Saturday from Vandagriff. “On his (Beck’s) first touchdown, I was jumping up and down with my arms in the air. He was on the other team, Me and Gunnar were just proud of him and what he’s been able to do this Spring.”
If I Go, There Will Be Trouble
Vandagriff also has the option to hit the Transfer Portal. He would be coveted by many teams. 247Sports scouting report on Vandagriff shows why he was a 5-star quarterback coming out of high school. He has the physical makeup that teams covet. “Clearly a pass-first QB but flashes athleticism to make plays with his legs, whether buying time or scrambling for yardage. Excels in off-schedule situations and shows an encouraging ability to vary arm angles as needed.” Three of Georgia’s 2023 opponents this year are looking for quarterbacks. None of the options seems like an upgrade from what Vandagriff has in Athens. Here is a quick snapshot.
Florida Gators or Auburn
Billy Napier got off to a rough start in his first year in Gainesville. Florida has their Spring game Friday night in Gainesville. What more could you ask for than the Friday night lights shining bright on the Swamp? Well, points would be nice. See Lane Kiffin’s tweet from Thursday.
🔥🔥 @FloridaGators pic.twitter.com/F8waijGD6j
— Lane Kiffin (@Lane_Kiffin) April 14, 2023
Anthony Richardson’s decision to declare for the NFL draft and botched recruitment of Jaden Rashada has left the Flordia quarterback room baren. Napier brought in Grahm Mertz from Wisconsin to compete with Jack Miller III. Napier told the media after the scrimmage that he planned on adding another quarterback from the Portal this summer.
Things have been quiet on The Plains. Hugh Freeze took over for Georiga’s other rival, the Auburn Tigers. The Tigers had their A-Day scrimmage on April 8th. Freeze’s comments on his quarterback in his competition show that he could be looking as well. “I feel better than I did 15 practices ago. There’s so much that needs to happen for someone to solidify being the guy. All have improved, all are still inconsistent with some things.” He was quick to praise the growth of Robby Ashford, but you get the feeling he is still looking.
Both options provide Vandagriff an opportunity to compete and show Georgia that he should have been named the starter. Neither coach seems enamored with their quarterback room and is looking for an upgrade. Vandagriff would be hurt by leaving after Spring ball and facing competition against guys with 15 more practices under their belt. In addition, he would also likely have to still sit out the 2023 season. The SEC came out with a rule that states any Spring or Summer inter-conference transfers have to sit out the 2023 season. If Vandagriff wants to play right away, he will have to leave the SEC.
Georgia Tech Yellowjackets
Brent Key enters his first full season as head coach of the Georgia Tech Yellowjackets. Key is looking for a new quarterback since Jeff Sims transferred to Nebraska during the Winter. He has a quarterback battle on his own and brought in Texas A&M transfer Haynes King to complete the starting quarterback job. Vandagriff may be an appealing option to Key and offensive coordinator Buster Faulkner. Faulker spent the last couple of seasons as an analyst at Georgia working closely with Todd Monken. For Vandagriff, familiarity with Faulkner and his offense would be an advantage, and he would also have the opportunity to compete for a starting position right away.
If I Stay It Will Be Double
Vandagriff’s best option might be to stay and compete. A quick history lesson shows that Georiga will likely need and use multiple quarterbacks in 2023. Jacob Eason, Jake Fromm, and Stetson Bennett all went into their respective seasons as the #2 quarterback under Smart. Each was called in early in the season to come in and took control of the job and the team. There are no guarantees the same will be true for Vandagriff, but he has put in a lot of hard work for Georgia. After all, they say hard work pays off.
💍💍ᴛʜᴇʏ ꜱᴀʏ ʜᴀʀᴅ ᴡᴏʀᴋ ᴘᴀʏꜱ ᴏꜰꜰ💍💍#GoDawgs | #back2back pic.twitter.com/bFO97o2UDy
— Georgia Football (@GeorgiaFootball) April 17, 2023