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Curran leads Bulldogs' defense in loss

ATHENS - The 2009 season is become one of personal bests for Georgia linebacker Rennie Curran.

The Brookwood grad, who entered Saturday's game with LSU as the SEC's leading tackler, enhanced that lead with a game-high 16 tackles in the Bulldogs' 20-13 loss at Sanford Stadium.

Those tackles set a new career high for the 5-foot-11, 225-pound junior.

He matched his previous career high with 15 tackles earlier this season in a win over South Carolina.

Saturday's performance also gives him 55 combined tackles and assists for the season, which puts him on pace to surpass his single-season personal best of 115, which he set last season.

For his career, Curran has 223 combined tackles.

Taste of Gwinnett

Louisiana's is known for its fine Cajun and Creole cooking, and the roster of that state's flagship university has a definitely Gwinnett flavor to it.

Of the six Tiger players from Georgia, four are from Gwinnett County - including starting center and GAC grad T-Bob Hebert, who played a major role blocking for an LSU offense that rolled up 368 yards of total offense.

LSU's other Gwinnettians are sophomore defensive back Derrick Bryant and redshirt freshman offensive lineman and freshman linebacker Kevin Minter, both Peachtree Ridge grads. Neither of them saw the field Saturday.

A fourth Georgian, redshirt freshman offensive lineman Cordarian Hagans is also listed as a Snellville resident.

Butler still booming

A third Peachtree Ridge grad on the field at Sanford Stadium had another big game, the type of which he has been accustomed to so far this season.

Punter Drew Butler, who entered Saturday's game as the nation's leading punter with an average of 50.1 yards per kick, did nothing to hurt that standing, averaging 49.1 yards over seven punts.

"He's been spectacular," Georgia coach Mark Richt said of Butler.

"I don't want him to get too pumped up, but he's done a beautiful job. Even when he has a mis-hit, it tends to roll in the right direction.

"That one punt he had in the first half (a 51-yarder with Georgia backed up at its own 2-yard line), it just turned field position around."

Making an impact

Another positive that came out of Saturday's loss for Georgia was the possible emergence of running back Washaun Ealey.

While there had been thoughts of redshirting him after not playing in the Bulldogs' first four games, the true freshman from Stillmore, responded when inserted into the game in the second half, running for a team-high 33 yards on eight carries.

"I feel pretty good. I wanted to help my team," Ealey said. "I was hoping (Saturday) would be the day (to finally get in a game). ... My coaches always tell me to stay ready and keep my head in the game. So, that's what I do every game."