Here's who we're not going to keep on roster and who I think we will, with a brief synopsis.
Jarvis Jones - Gone. what seemed like an easy decision last year this time (and one he thankfully chose against) is an even easier one this year thanks to an amazing season. Even though he missed a couple games Jones established himself as the best defensive player available in this year's draft and perhaps the best overall.
Alec Ogletree - Gone. I read somewhere the other day that a 2013 commit will be using the #9 next season while on defense. The fact that he's rated so high (mid-first rounder) in spite of a four game suspension tells you all you need to know. Jarvis could've slipped to the late first round or early second round in the 2012 draft. Tree won't leave anything to doubt.
Aaron Murray - Stays. This was going to be a difficult decision for Murray even if he had a few more seconds to throw that game winning touchdown in the Dome. The mechanics and the talent really can't brush up against much higher of a ceiling can they? And still he can't make himself any taller at the combine. So his decision will come down to personal perspective I think: weighing whatever feedback he gets from the league and those close to him (Bobo, Richt, the Mannings, family...) against where he wants to be next year physically and mentally.
Kwame Geathers - This is as big of a decision for the defense as Murray's is for the offense. We're already losing Jenkins at the nose spot. If Kwame can bridge the gap as we give some younger guys some experience here it would be huge. Still, our luck with getting members of this family to matriculate fully has not been good. Grantham and Garner can use a deep 2013 class against the idea of Geathers leaving (Jenkins is one of a slew at DT that would go ahead of Geathers), but in the end I think Kwame is Gone.
Surprises - There's usually one or two that we're caught off guard by, at least from a "didn't see that coming" standpoint. Redshirt sophomores that are eligible as well as ones who have had significant playing time is a small pool. Like, Ken Malcome is about it. Unless you include Michael Bennett coming off a knee injury. As for juniors that we haven't already covered, we're looking at guys like Wooten and Vasser as well as some offensive line guys that are just getting their feet under them and some good exposure.
So I think we're concentrating on the list above, which is full of talent and experience, but is luckily short in number. We'll know more once we start to hear substantial rumors and the list of players who turned in requests for evaluation is leaked. And now that it's December we've officially created separation between Murray and Mason. So hopefully Murray stays and we get another season to establish some competition for Mason in the 2014 season with Bauta or the Ramsey kid that's supposed to enroll next month. That didn't seem like nearly as big of a deal until we saw how much more faith Bobo/Richt had in a walk on quarterback taking garbage time snaps over the redshirt freshman scholarhship player.