Dawgs hope Pruitt is answer for defense - KPTV - FOX 12

Dawgs hope Pruitt is answer for defense

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ATHENS, GA (WALB) - Georgia Bulldog fans are excited to see how their defense will play this season. Much of that anticipation is to see how the unit responds to new defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt.

The Dawgs hired Pruitt to take over the defense in January, after former coordinator Todd Grantham shockingly bolted for Louisville.

After leading the Florida State defense to a national title in 2013, fans' expectations for the defensive side of the ball are high.

Head coach Mark Richt says hiring Pruitt won't turn the defense around itself, but does believe the unit is headed in the right direction.

"The proof's in the pudding. We have to play some games and we'll see," says Richt. "But I've got faith we're doing things the right way. If you know you're process is good, then over time you're going to have success."

Defensive players say they already see a change in culture in attitude. They credit that wholly to Pruitt.

"We just have a new system and way of doing things," says LB Amarlo Herrera. "He's pushing everybody, and if you don't do it his way, you're not going to play. We didn't have that last year."

Herrera adds the defense is buying into Pruitt's system, and feel confident in the new coach's credibility.

"He just came off a national championship," says Herrera. "He's a new guy with a lot of energy coming in."

Herrera says the biggest task for the defense during preseason workouts will be getting comfortable with the new schemes.

The Dawgs return eight starters, but lost three defensive backs to transfer this offseason. Georgia opens the season August 30 vs. Clemson.

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