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Georgia Football

BREAKING: UGA Football's Kirby Smart Makes Call on Starting Quarterback

August 19, 2023

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ATHENS - UGA football coach Kirby Smart named Carson Beck the program’s starting quarterback on Saturday. 

The news came after the Bulldogs’ second scrimmage of the preseason. The No. 1 Dawgs will open the season against Tennessee-Martin on September 2nd Between the Hedges. Beck winning the job over quarterbacks Brock Vandagriff and Gunner Stockton was not a surprise, and was expected by insiders. 

“Carson Beck is going to be our starting quarterback,” Kirby told reporters Saturday. “He’s done the best job.”

The move concludes the question about who would follow national championship-winning signal caller Stetson Bennett, who went from walk-on to UGA legend in a matter of six years. Beck has played quite a bit in his time at UGA. The Jacksonville native was Bennett’s backup a season ago. Still, he played in seven games - going 25 of 35 for 310 yards with four touchdowns. He added seven runs for 43 yards. 

Now that Beck is the confirmed starter, FanDuel has given him +2000 odds to win the 2023 Heisman Trophy at the end of thee 2023 regular season.

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“I think coach Smart does a great job of developing guys, and obviously Coach Monken was super smart and does a great job with the offense,” Beck said when asked why he never transferred from UGA. “That was something I always kept in the back of my head. Obviously, I don’t want to go school to school. That’s a lot. Being with a new team and having to develop a relationship with new guys. I love the guys here, and it’s been a lot of fun.”

Beck will enter his fourth season this fall, and he admitted that it’s been tough to remain on the sideline for so long.

“It’s difficult staying on the sideline,” Beck said. “Each week I just tried to prepare like I’m starting. That way I knew if I did get the opportunity that I would be ready. The mental side is where my game has improved over the last year or so. I think the physical part and throwing the ball will always continue to improve. That’s more of a chemistry thing with your receivers and understanding timing. But the mental side is what I’ve been trying to focus on and trying to improve. I’ll sit down and watch film by myself - study the playbook - make sure I’m understanding the ins and outs of every play.”

Beck's transition to the starting job will coincide with Mike Bobo taking over the offense at UGA. Bobo was hired to replace Todd Monken after he left for the Ravens in the offseason. Bobo was Georgia's offensive coordinator from 2007-14. 

Beck was a four-start prospect who won the state title his junior season at Florida's Mandarin High School in south Jacksonville. He picked the Bulldogs over Alabama and the Gators. 

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