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No. 15 Georgia rolls in opener; QB situation still in limbo

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) -- Hey Mikey, what's with the showboating?

In Georgia's 48-12 win Saturday over Western Kentucky -- which
was as easy as expected although it did nothing to resolve the
Bulldogs' quarterback situation -- Mikey Henderson provided some
excitement.

Henderson got a little ahead of himself on a 64-yard punt return
in the first quarter and started to celebrate inside the 5, holding
the ball high in his left hand. The problem was the ball came loose
before he crossed the goal line and bounced through the end zone
for a touchback.

Just over a minute later, Henderson got another chance returning
punts and broke loose for a 67-yard touchdown that set the pace for
No. 15 Georgia's season opener.

"I thought I was in but something in the back of my mind was
saying that maybe I wasn't in, so I looked for the ball," said
Henderson, who was returning punts for the first time in his
career.

When officials began their long review of his blunder, Henderson
didn't even bother looking at the Sanford Stadium video board.

"I couldn't look," he said. "When they said it was being
reviewed, I just put my head down."

After the play was ruled a touchback, giving Western Kentucky
possession at the 20, Henderson approached coach Mark Richt, not to
beg forgiveness but to let the coach know his hamstring felt tight.

Then Henderson asked to have another chance.

"I didn't want that to be my last play," Henderson said. "He
didn't want me to get hurt, but I wanted to go back in there and
get another shot at it."

He didn't have to wait long.

Western Kentucky's Tanner Siewert had to punt to Henderson
again, and this time Henderson held the ball in both hands and dove
into the end zone.

"I wasn't thinking touchdown, I just wanted to go back in
there," Henderson said.

Richt only reluctantly provided the second chance.

"I was getting ready to yank him, not because of his hamstring
but because of what happened," Richt said.

After the touchdown, Henderson was held out the rest of the game
"not because of his antics, but because of his hamstring," Richt
said.

New Georgia starting quarterback Joe Tereshinski's also had an
uneven day, but unlike Henderson, it may not be so easy to brush
off the Bulldogs.

Joe T threw for 90 yards and a touchdown before highly touted
freshman Matthew Stafford led two fourth-quarter drives.

Tereshinski finished 7-of-17, including a 17-yard touchdown pass
to Mario Raley for a 14-0 lead.

Joe Cox, the top backup, entered the game in the second quarter
with Georgia leading 24-0 and completed 2-of-3 passes for 29 yards
with an interception.

Tereshinski returned in the third quarter before Stafford
excited fans in the final period, possibly earning a promotion to
second string.

Tereshinski had several passes dropped, including a possible TD
pass to tight end Martrez Milner early in the third quarter.
Tereshinski, a senior, made his first and only start last season in
a loss to Florida.

"Right now Joe T. is definitely No. 1 and we'll just compete to
see who is No. 2," Richt said.

On Stafford's first possession, Danny Ware ran 40 yards for a
touchdown and a 41-7 lead. Ware had five carries for 63 yards.

Stafford also directed a 65-yard touchdown drive, completing
three straight passes, including a 13-yard scoring pass to tight
end Coleman Watson with one minute left. Stafford finished 3-of-5
for 40 yards and one touchdown.

Richt said the decision to play Stafford was made before the
game.

"I felt pretty comfortable," Stafford said. "It was awesome
to go out there and have the fans cheer me like that."

The quarterback situation likely will be a hot topic again as
Georgia prepares for its Southeastern Conference opener at South
Carolina next Saturday.

"The depth chart is not really set in stone right now, so
you've got to look for your opportunities," Tereshinski said.
"I'm ready for it to be set."

After Tereshinski's TD pass, Brandon Coutu kicked a 37-yard
field goal for a 17-0 lead. Kregg Lumpkin and Thomas Brown each had 2-yard scoring runs for
the Bulldogs in the second quarter for a 31-0 lead.

Western Kentucky's Justin Haddix was 12-for-27 for 126 yards
with a touchdown and an interception.

"Forty-eight points is 48 points and we are not happy with
that," Hilltoppers coach David Elson said. "We did play hard and
were concerned with their running backs. You won't find a better
trio of running backs than what Georgia has."

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