ATHENS, Ga. -- The big news out of Athens this week concerned raises for each of Mark Richt’s football assistants -- including a big raise and new three-year contract for offensive coordinator Mike Bobo.
Bobo received a $240,000 pay bump to $575,000 per year and assistants Will Friend and Tony Ball also got sizable raises, but all nine Richt assistants received a pay increase of some sort.
Each day this week, we discussed five questions that faced the Bulldogs as they embarked on spring practice. A recap:
• Question 1: Who will supply the pass rush now that two-time All-American Jarvis Jones has entered the NFL draft?
• Question 2: How many of the Bulldogs’ 13 midyear enrollees will play this fall?
• Question 3: The Bulldogs face one of the most difficult September schedules of any team in the country. Will the rebuilding defense be ready for that challenge?
• Question 4: Statistically, Georgia enjoyed one of the finest offensive seasons in school history last fall. What must a group that returns 10 starters do to improve in 2013?
• Question 5: Friday was the final day of classes before Georgia takes its spring break. Can the Bulldogs dodge the disciplinary issues they encountered at this time a year ago?
We also featured offensive lineman Austin Long, who is lining up as the starting right guard in Chris Burnette’s absence this spring. The oft-injured senior is set to play a prominent role in the fall and would probably have the option to return for a sixth season of eligibility, although he said he hasn’t decided whether to pursue that possibility yet.
• On the recruiting trail …
Georgia offered a top running back for the Class of 2015. Jacques Patrick (Orlando, Fla./Timber Creek) used to play with Georgia freshman linebacker Ryne Rankin and said the offer from the Bulldogs was one he really wanted.
Among the other recruits we caught up with were offensive/defensive lineman Charles Mosley (Brighton, Tenn./Brighton), defensive tackle Lamont Gaillard (Fayetteville, N.C./Pine Forest) and defensive back Kendall Randolph (Tallahassee, Fla./Lincoln).
• In non-football news …
Georgia’s basketball team pulled off two big wins against NCAA tournament bubble teams -- Tennessee and Kentucky -- since our last update. Here are our notes from the Tennessee and Kentucky victories, which helped the Bulldogs improve to 15-15 overall and 9-8 in SEC play.
Mark Fox’s club plays its final game of the season today at 4 p.m. ET at Alabama. The game will air on the SEC Network.
Georgia’s baseball team broke out the sticks to sweep UAB last weekend. The Bulldogs won 14-2, 6-2 and 13-2 to improve to 5-6 before dropping a midweek game against Western Carolina, 12-7.
The Bulldogs host Liberty this weekend at Foley Field. Today’s game starts at 3 p.m. and Sunday’s game starts at 2 p.m.