George Horlin-Smith made his debut for the Cats in 2012
GEELONG coach Chris Scott has a queue of young players camped outside his door putting their hand up for a game and George Horlin-Smith hopes to be among those to get the nod.
After three games on debut last year, the 20-year-old said on Thursday morning that he had latched on to the knowledge of veterans Jimmy Bartel and Joel Corey as he aimed to become a starting midfielder.
"They've been really good for me over the last few months, with my understanding of the game-plan and the way they've grown as footballers since they first came to the club," he told SEN 1116 on Thursday morning.
"They've been really important for me. They invest a huge amount of time into the younger players."
The former Sturt player said coming to grips with the game-plan remained one of the toughest assignments for those starting out at the club.
"It can be pretty complex and take some time to grasp. I think the hardest part is that you can understand it in a meeting room or one-on-one with a coach, but for it to become second nature out on the ground can take some time."
As for the battle to get a game in round one against Hawthorn, Horlin-Smith said Scott spent plenty of time with the club's young players and had a firm handle on their development and readiness to play.
"He's a really good communicator and he's right across where we are now and where we want to be in the future. We're trying to grab his attention and he's really aware of that."
The faster the Geelong youngsters develop, the softer will be Geelong's landing after the club's unprecedented success of the last few years.
"We are confident we're not going to slide, but I think 'Scotty' and the coaching staff have done a huge amount of planning ahead, whether that be for 2015 and 2016, to ensure the group remains successful.
"But we hope that's the case this year. We have had a good pre-season and are starting to find some form."