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The University of Georgia Bulldogs beat the Clemson Tigers 10-3 during their season opener on Sept. 4, 2021, in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo/ Kathryn Skeean, kskeean@randb.com)

As Georgia returns to Sanford Stadium, it will be looking to improve on its 1-0 record with a victory over UAB. Here are some new faces to watch in the Bulldogs home opener: 

Brock Bowers, tight end, Georgia

In his first collegiate start, Bowers led the team in receiving yards with 43 yards on six receptions against Clemson on Sept. 4. Bowers’ presence came following the absence of other options at tight end with Darnell Washington missing with a foot injury and Arik Gilbert still absent after leaving the team for “personal reasons” in preseason. Bowers, coming out of Napa High School in Napa, California, was a four-star recruit and the No. 3 tight end in the country, according to 247Sports.

Jaylen Johnson, wide receiver, Georgia

Johnson has been with the Bulldogs two years prior to the 2021 season, but he secured the first reception of his college career against Clemson. He finished with 21 receiving yards against the Tigers on one reception. His lone catch was the longest pass JT Daniels completed the entire game. In his previous two seasons at Georgia, Johnson appeared in 13 games but was not able to make an impact like he did against Clemson.

Ladd McConkey, wide receiver, Georgia

McConkey joined Bowers in making his Bulldog debut against Clemson and was a productive option for Daniels in the passing game. He caught two passes for 12 yards against the Tigers to help fill the vacancies left by other options at wide receiver. McConkey joined the Bulldogs from North Murray High School in Chatsworth, Georgia, where he was ranked as a three-star recruit by 247Sports. In high school, he earned 3,051 all-purpose yards playing as a quarterback, running back, wide receiver and return specialist.

Ryan Davis, wide receiver, UAB

Davis, a redshirt sophomore, played with the Blazers after he redshirted his freshman year, but has already taken steps to becoming more of a center piece to UAB’s offense. In the Blazers’ debut against Jacksonville State, Davis caught for 51 yards on three receptions, averaging 17 yards per catch. His total in UAB’s first game of 2021 already exceeds his total from last season in which he caught for 45 yards on three receptions. Davis, a Georgia native, graduated from Blessed Trinity Catholic in Roswell.

Mac McWilliams, cornerback, UAB

McWilliams led the Blazers in tackles in their season opener, earning three while also finishing with an assist. Last season, he appeared in four games and finished with six tackles and two quarterback hurries. McWilliams was a part of the Blazers’ defense which shut out Jacksonville State in a 31-0 win to start their season. He helped UAB’s secondary prevent Jacksonville State’s quarterback, Zerrick Cooper, from leading the offense as he was held to 91 passing yards on the game.

Drew Hubbard is the sports editor of The Red & Black. He is a senior at the University of Georgia majoring in journalism, minoring in sport management and pursuing the university's Sports Media Certificate.

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