Georgia football LB Jamon Dumas-Johnson on moving on from reckless driving charge

Jamon Dumas-Johnson’s 2022 season for Georgia football ended with a bang.
Another national championship. All-American selections by ESPN.com and The Sporting News. Butkus Award finalist.
It’s been more bumpy in 2023 on and off the field for the Bulldogs' starting inside linebacker.
The junior from Hyattsville, Md., had a high-profile arrest in February after police said he was street racing on Jan. 10, the day after the team returned from Los Angeles from the title game.
Dumas-Johnson addressed the incident — one of a string of driving-related by Georgia players this offseason — for the first time on Thursday.
“I just take it day-by-day,” he said. “For me, I’m definitely disappointed about the decision I made. I’ve been disciplined for that. Just really looking forward to moving on from that. I made a bad decision, but I take full responsibility for what I did. Me and the team, just take it day-by-day. Just work to move forward.”
On the practice field this spring, Dumas-Johnson and fellow returning starting inside linebacker Smael Mondon were summoned to coach Kirby Smart’s office because he didn’t think they were practicing at the level they did a year earlier.
“I showed them some clips, I said, ‘here’s last spring, last fall camp, and this is the way you were practicing, because you had something to prove, but now, here’s the first four practices of this spring, is that the same two guys?'” Smart said during spring practice. “I think they both acknowledged that it probably wasn’t, and it needed to be.”
Said Dumas-Johnson: “When he told us that, you had to really look at ourselves in the mirror and actually be truthful with ourselves about what coach was saying.”
Dumas-Johnson’s racing incident came five days before the fatal crash that killed offensive lineman Devin Willock and recruiting staffer Chandler LeCroy. Police said LeCroy, whose blood alcohol limit was more than twice the legal limit, was racing defensive tackle Jalen Carter at speeds up to 104 miles per hour.
Police charged Dumas-Johnson for the Jan. 10 incident with two misdemeanors after they said he was the driver of one of two Dodge Chargers that accelerated at a traffic light on College Station Road and went 75 miles per hour but police could not catch them.
Dumas-Johnson pleaded guilty to reckless driving and a racing charge was dismissed. He received 12-months probation, 40 hours of community service and was required to complete a defensive driving course and traffic violator impact program.
It is one of 14 speeding or racing/reckless driving citations or arrests for Georgia players this offseason.
“I definitely don’t think it’s a culture that we created,” Dumas-Johnson said. “Just some bad choices that we’re making right now. Hopefully the team gets it together.”
Dumas-Johnson said of the reckless driving: “I will never do it again.”
As for being disciplined, he said: “It was pretty hard throughout that process, I was hard on myself. I didn’t believe I made the right decision.”
Smart made sure to point out that both Dumas-Johnson and Mondon picked it up from that spring meeting with him, showing the type of leadership he was wanting out of them.
“They both answered the bell a little bit,” he said last month. “I think they were maybe cruising.”
While Mondon is limited to start preseason practices due to a foot injury, Xavian Sorey, Jalon Walker, EJ Lightsey and freshman Raylen Wilson and CJ Allen are fighting for snaps.
“If you sit around at linebacker, you’ll be sitting down somewhere if you don’t perform,” Smart said.
The 6-foot-1, 245-pound Dumas-Johnson seems pretty secure with his spot after finishing second on the team with 70 tackles and 4 sacks last season while leading the Bulldogs with 9 tackles for loss.
“This defense is not the same without Jamon, we call him Pop,” safety/nickel back Javon Bullard said. “He’s the voice. As a middle linebacker, you have to take on that role. … He embraces it.”
Asked if there’s anybody on the offensive line that gives him fits in practice, Dumas-Johnson shook his head repeatedly and then smiled.
“You’ve got to keep the same energy,” he said earlier. “We’re really trying to do the same thing we did last year.”

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