When offensive lineman Cade Mays decided to leave Georgia and transfer to Tennessee, he didn’t know whether or not he would be able to play in 2020.

But that didn’t stop him from leaving Athens. Whatever the situation was at Georgia, Mays was willing to sit out a year to get away from it.

“Cade knew the possibility of missing the entire season was there. To put himself in a better enviroment, Cade felt like ‘I’m willing to do that’,” said Mays’ father to VolQuest this week.

Tennessee Vols

That’s an extremely telling comment from Kevin Mays, a former Vols standout.

The fact that Cade left Georgia, knowing that he might not get to play in 2020, says a lot about the atmosphere under Kirby Smart at UGA.

Now, we don’t know the specific reasons that Mays chose to leave Georgia, beyond his parents’ lawsuit against the program (and the description of the enviroment as toxic).

But I think it’s clear that something isn’t right in Athens.

When a five-star offensive lineman, who would’ve been a key player for Georgia, decides he’d be willing to not play to get away from the program, it’s a major red flag.

And if the Butch Jones era at Tennessee taught me anything, it’s that red flags shouldn’t be ignored (remember all the players that left UT when Jones was the head coach).

Smart is obviously a better X’s and O’s coach than Jones. I don’t think there’s any debate there. But the off-the-field stuff? They might not be so different in that area.

Georgia fans might want to pay attention to the program Smart is running, because it could be a charade similar to what Jones had in place on Rocky Top for five seasons.

Featured image via UTAD/huck Cook-USA TODAY Sports