Big brother played a big factor in one of the nation’s top high school quarterbacks committing to Steve Spurrier and South Carolina over Georgia Tech.
Flowery Branch’s Connor Shaw is the younger brother of Georgia Tech quarterback Jaybo Shaw. Big brother’s presence had its advantages and disadvantages for the Jackets in recruiting.
“Jaybo and I are real close,” Connor told the AJC. “We always talked about how cool it would be to play with each other again after high school. He’s the main reason I wanted to go to Georgia Tech. However, ultimately it came down to us competing for the same job … My parents are excited for me. They are just trying to figure out which games to go to in a couple of years, the games at South Carolina or Georgia Tech.”
Connor picked South Carolina over offers from Georgia Tech, Stanford, Wake Forest, West Virginia, Central Florida and East Carolina. He also had serious interest from more than 40 schools, including UGA, Tennessee, Auburn, Alabama, Florida State, UCLA, North Carolina, and Oregon. Shaw was invited to Georgia’s spring game on Saturday by offensive coordinator Mike Bobo.
“[Bobo] was contacting me all week, trying to get me over there for spring practice,” Shaw said. “I didn’t go because I didn’t want to lead on anybody this late in the recruiting process. I was down to South Carolina and Georgia Tech, and didn’t want to make it more complicated for anybody.”
The 6-foot-2, 200-pound Shaw ended up choosing to play with his childhood hero, Steve Spurrier. “He has one of the greatest offensive minds in the history of college football. I grew up loving [Spurrier]. I know he’s strict on his QBs, but any coach does that. Spurrier is a really a laid-back and enjoyable guy. When I committed, he said that we were going to have some good times together and that ‘South Carolina was the place I needed to be.’”
Connor, 17, said that Jaybo, 19, took the news well. “He was excited for me. He wasn’t pressuring me to go to Georgia Tech. He knew it was my decision to make.” Connor’s decision was nearly Georgia Tech. “It was very close. It would’ve probably gotten ‘old’, competing against each other every day for time at quarterback. We have such a good relationship, I didn’t want that as a brother.”
Connor is a little bit taller, while Jaybo is a little faster. “We’re pretty much eye to eye … the same style of QB’” Shaw said. “We do a lot of things the same. We’re very similar as quarterbacks. Of course, it will change up in college because we’ll both be playing in different types of offenses.”
But it the was one thing that the brothers share most in common that factored into Jaybo’s decision – competitiveness. “We compete in everything, everything you name it and it has been that way since we were little,” Connor said with a laugh. “We’re brothers. We both want to beat out each other in everything. We wouldn’t want it any other way.”