No. 4 of 10 people I’m excited to see at Georgia State’s spring practice

Kendrick Dorn. (Georgia State)

Kendrick Dorn. (Georgia State)

Georgia State’s football team will start spring practice on Thursday at the practice complex on MLK Drive.

The team returns nine starters on defense and seven on offense.

This is an interesting year for coach Trent Miles as he looks to build momentum on last year’s 6-7 season, which included the first bowl appearance in program history.

The team will open its season hosting Ball State on Sept. 1 or 2.

This is the second in a 10-part blog series on the people I’m most excited to watch this spring.

No. 10 was Andrew Everett.

No. 9 was Jonathan Ifedi.

No. 8 was Ari Werts

No. 7 was Rick Minter

No. 6 was Cloves Campbell

No. 5 was Ed Curney

Most of these are people who either didn’t play last year, didn’t play a lot last year, or are trying to replace the few key starters who graduated and/or used up their eligibility.

Nos. 10-4 are in no particular order. The final three are.

Kendrick Dorn

Position: Running back

Class: Redshirt junior

Height: 6-0

Weight: 205

Stats from last season: None, because he missed the season after suffering a knee injury in August.

Why is he on the list? Dorn was considered the front-runner to challenge Kyler Neal for the starting job during last August’s camp. After a slow start during which he looked hesitant, he began to find a groove in the offense and looked good finding holes and making tacklers miss. And then he suffered a knee injury that sidelined him for the rest of the season. He started running as part of his rehab late in the season.

Why am I interested to watch him practice? Georgia State will have a new quarterback next year, one of four starters that must be replaced. Because it will have a new quarterback, I assume that the offense will rely on its running game and play action early in the offseason until one of the three quarterbacks finds his mojo and the passing game starts to resemble the previous two year’s.

The running game couldn’t be counted on last year. The team averaged 96.9 rushing yards per game and averaged 3.1 yards per carry. Those aren’t the averages of a sustainable running game. There were numerous examples of the team needing to get one yard, handing off the ball, and not getting that yard. That’s not all on the running backs, of course. And there were also examples of them creating something from nothing.

Anyway, Dorn will be one of several running backs that will be used, but he and perhaps Demarcus Kirk are the two that can do the most. Kyler Neal is mostly a between-the-tackles guy who can catch, but doesn’t make people miss. Glenn Smith can make guys miss and catch passes, but doesn’t have the size to be a between-the-tackles guy. Kirk showed a lot of potential last year. Taz Bateman showed big-play potential. Dorn is the one guy that would seem to be able to do all of the things. But right now it’s unknown, which is why I want to see him at practice.

 

Here are more posts:

Georgia State football

Georgia State spring tour dates

Results of Georgia State’s pro day

Georgia State spring game set

Sun Belt schedule superlatives

2016 Georgia State Sun Belt football schedule

Podcast: The Sun Belt retraction excitation

Sun Belt football will condense to 10 teams

10 questions with Georgia State QB Conner Manning

10 questions with Georgia State QB Aaron Winchester

Georgia State and North Carolina schedule home-and-home football series;

Georgia State loses an assistant football coach;

Georgia State schedules home-and-home series with Vanderbilt;

How did Georgia State do on ESPN channels;

Trent Miles reviews Georgia State’s special teams and recruiting

Trent Miles reviews Georgia State’s offense

Trent Miles reviews Georgia State’s defense

Georgia State finds out its Sun Belt opponents for 2016

Georgia State welcomes six early enrollees

Georgia State adds Tennessee State to football schedule

Georgia State’s Hart named All-American

Georgia State basketball

The six-part series on what went wrong for the team in 2016:

Part I: Lack of chemistry.

Part II: Issues at point guard.

Part III: No fast-break game.

Part IV: No post player.

Part V: Not enough shots.

Part VI: Freshmen development.

Georgia State shut out of Sun Belt awards

Georgia State’s Bruise Brothers get last home game

An update on Georgia State’s practice facility;

Georgia State/Atlanta bid to host the Sun Belt basketball tournament;

Video: Ron Hunter after the loss to UALR

Ongoing football review/preview series

Offensive line

Wide receivers

Running backs

Quarterbacks

Ongoing 2016 schedule previews

Wisconsin

Tennessee-Martin

Air Force

Ball State


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