Football Recruiting: Top prospect commits to UGA after serious flirtations with archrival Georgia Tech (Updated)

UGA coach Mark Richt went public with his recruiting goal of building a “Dream Team” of elite prospects from Georgia’s high schools.

How would you rate Mark Richt's "Dream Team" 2011 recruiting class so far?

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The Bulldogs added an all-star with the commitment of Wilcox County’s Nick Marshall.

The 6-foot-2, 190-pounder picked the Bulldogs over Georgia Tech, and also had offers from Alabama and Florida Sate. Marshall switched to UGA after reportedly being a “silent commitment” to Georgia Tech.

“This really all came out of the blue,” Wilcox County football coach Mark Ledford told the AJC’s Chip Towers. “Nick was leaning to Georgia Tech as of late last week. He had a close relationship to Georgia Tech the last month or so. Then out of the blue, Coach Richt called and wanted to offer him as a defensive back.

“Nick told me Monday he wanted to commit to Georgia. I said let’s talk about it Tuesday and see if you feel the same way. We talked after his work out and he said he defintely wanted to go To Georgia. I talked to his Mom and explained what that meant. She called Coach Richt and committed [Tuesday] night.”

What about being a “silent commitment” to Georgia Tech? “I don’t know if you’d call it a silent commit,” Ledford told Towers. “I’m not sure where that term came from. I’ll just say he was very close to committing to Georgia Tech.”

BREAKING NEWS: Wednesday was a tough day for Georgia Tech, which also saw football recruit Jake Skole sign with baseball’s Texas Rangers for a $1.557 million bonus. (Click here for story)

Marshall is considered the state’s No. 1 overall athlete for 2011, earning Div. I offers in both football and basketball. He started at both quarterback and defensive back while leading Wilcox County to the Class A state championship in football, and has pledged to sign with Georgia at defensive back. Marshall will also walk on UGA’s basketball team.

Richt has compared Marshall’s athleticism to the Charlie Ward, the 1997 Heisman Trophy winner from Florida State who played 11 seasons in the NBA. With Marshall, UGA has 11 commitments for its 2011 football recruiting class, including 10 from Georgia. The only outsider so far is QB Christian LeMay of Matthews, N.C. The other homegrown headliners of Richt’s “Dream Team” are East Hall DE Sterling Bailey, North Paulding WR Chris Conley and the “state’s fastest man” — Mitchell County WR Justin Scott-Wesley.

Earlier this spring, Marshall admitted UGA caught his attention with a signing day surprise, both offering and signing his cousin (Wilcox County 6-foot-7 WR Lonnie Outlaw) to a football scholarship on the same day. The Bulldogs signed Outlaw knowing he was a few credits shy and will require two years at Georgia Military College before being admitted UGA. Were the Bulldogs laying down the groundwork for a “package deal” to eventually land Marshall? Click here for the story.

No. 14 in blue is UGA's commit No. 11 (AJC)

No. 14 in blue is UGA's commit No. 11 (AJC)

Back to the “Dream Team” of Georgia prospects: Last April, UGA sent out a press release with Richt declaring his recruiting priorities. “By the end [of spring], our assistant coaches will have been to more than 350 schools in the state of Georgia,” Richt said. “Our coaches are really pounding the state of Georgia. The focus of our staff is to make sure we recruit the state of Georgia first.”

Who may end up being the biggest winner out of the Nick Marshall sweepstakes? UGA basketball coach Mark Fox, who is riding a wave of momentum after beating out powerhouses such as Kentucky, Texas, North Carolina and Memphis for the AJC’s Mr. Basketball, Westlake High’s Marcus Thornton. Marshall plans to also play basketball at UGA. At shooting guard this past season, Marshall led Wilcox again to the semifinals, averaging 27.5 points, including a 52-point performance in the playoff opener against Montgomery County.

“I’d say Nick is one of the best I’ve seen in high school basketball, and I’ve been around this business for 38 years,” Wilcox basketball coach George Kennedy said. “He just does some stuff that is God-given talent that you don’t see every day.”

196 comments Add your comment

Richard Tardits

June 9th, 2010
6:16 am

They sure look good getting off the bus but can they play?

Ogre

June 9th, 2010
6:17 am

Let me drink your tears nerds

Makers Mark

June 9th, 2010
6:19 am

How bout them DAWGS!!! 1st.

Jeff2U

June 9th, 2010
6:20 am

THIRD!! Thats the best this ol’dog can do today.

Big L

June 9th, 2010
6:36 am

How does getting this kid or the way Richt does bussiness dislay a lack of integrity. Punch em in the face. Integrity my butt!! Let ol PJ keep on denying the rivalry or the accomplishments of the UGA football program. John Wooden of Ohio State said Michigan was just another game. They fired him cause he did’nt recognize the magnitude of that game and he’s in the college football hall of fame. Ol PJ better accept the rivalry and play up to it or it will happen to him also.

Go Dawgs!

June 9th, 2010
6:40 am

Wow! A Tech guy is the very first to comment on a UGA recruiting story. How sad is your life. I can see why the kid was a “silent commitment” to Tech though…. I wouldn’t want anyone to know I was thinking of playing football there either! You made the RIGHT choice Nick.

WhatDidImiss

June 9th, 2010
6:42 am

Yet another fine recruit going to the land of mediorcrity. Too bad he will never be coached up like we do at Bama. Good luck kid, but bad choice if you actually want to get better.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

June 9th, 2010
7:01 am

good to hear- UGA’s class is shaping up very nice

Buzzed Phd is a Night Elf Mohawk

June 9th, 2010
7:07 am

We have nothing to talk about on the tech blogs so I thought I would come show my vast intelligence on this blog.

Big L

June 9th, 2010
7:09 am

You’r right Package Deal. But Duh-rick thinks he’s T.O. We are better off without the head case.

Now what

June 9th, 2010
7:15 am

Who is going to block for the dream team? We are picking up lots of specialty players with lots of stars, but we need to start picking up some big bodies that may have less stars but make the offense work.

JB

June 9th, 2010
7:19 am

Buzzed – You envy and bitterness is just more than a tad obvious.

If we can get some of the kids from Columbus…

HBTD!!!

David

June 9th, 2010
7:28 am

GT fan here, Nick has been a silent commit for two weeks now, but his coach pushed him to UGA. If it was up to Nick he’d be coming to GT, but his coach probably receiving something made him go to UGA. It’s how it works.

JB

June 9th, 2010
7:31 am

OK, all this is great….speed everywhere…..lot’s of skill players……now let’s get 4 big OL , 2 DT and 2 DE and 3 LB’s and a top 5 RB.

JB

June 9th, 2010
7:36 am

David…….His high school coach, who has probably been to Athens and Grant Field on a Saturday told him of HIS experience at both those games, and Nick made HIS OWN mind up of where he wanted to go. Now, Johnson could have sent Reggie Ball to talk to him about the virtues of a Tech education if pro ball didn’t work out. What firm is Reggie with ?

AWJ

June 9th, 2010
7:41 am

David,

I hope you are joking…

If not, it is actually quite funny (or sad) that you would actually believe that….

JB

June 9th, 2010
7:42 am

Johnson is the poster child for ego.His MO with one of his 18 year players when they screw up coming off the field is a nice touch….Maybe that’s good coaching……maybe we need some of that in Athens………But Johnson is mostly a jerk.

GT Fan...

June 9th, 2010
7:43 am

Package Deals —
To extend a scholarship to a kid that would more than likely not be on your radar, just so you can get another kid who is, might be setting a standard these 17-18 year olds need to be no part of. Letting the “inmates run the asylum” isn’t very smart. Besides, there just might be another, more deserving kid out there for that “wasted” scholarship??

These kids over the past few years have started to get a little out of hand with their recruitment and crazy announcement “cerimonies”.

Derrick Foster

June 9th, 2010
7:49 am

Great choice kid. God has blessed you with a lot of abilities. I wish you the best. Why so bitter “buzzed?” I would not gloat so much as being the ACC champs. Did GT beat UGA? How did GT do in their BCS game? Being the reigning ACC champ does not mean much in today’s college FB world. Anyways, good luck Nick!

JB

June 9th, 2010
8:03 am

You yellow maggot folks are cracking me up. Maybe NM wants to not be one the wrong end of the in state rivalry, damn near every year. Maybe he’d like to play for a hoop coach who is loved by his alumni and school and looks to be taking his program in the right direction, big time.

Again, the bitterness and envy is so thick it could be cut with a knife and it’s starting to look like said knife had best be stoudt.

HBTD!!!

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

June 9th, 2010
8:06 am

Now What- we recruited some big bodies for the 2009/2010 class and i’m sure that we’ll add a few more this year. anyone know how many schloarships are available this year?? Isn’t it @ 25??

All Knowing

June 9th, 2010
8:11 am

Please stop referencing Coach Richt as such a great man. This was a payola deal all the way. Most involved knew this kid was committed to Tech, until his Coach got the goods. The Bagman and Richt delivered. Sad commentary regarding the “Rev. Richt.” You can drop that moniker for certain.

JB

June 9th, 2010
8:12 am

When’s the last time a big time recruit held a news conference at his school or church with 200 people to announce he was going to…………………….Georgia Tech ?……LOL, I don’t think it’s ever happened. You guys know you always finish in the 30’s and 40’s in recruiting rankings, not that they mean much , but still, people do track these, and you get a few ballers, but for the most part, it’s between ya’ll, William and Mary and Southern Miss and the like. You know it. We know it…..But I do think Johnson does a good job with who he gets. I know ya’ll are gonna miss Gailey’s studs. Don’t see many better than those coming into your program.

Roll Tide

June 9th, 2010
8:13 am

This is crazy! Who’s advising this Kid!? I’ve seen him play. He’s not a DB, he’s a QB! Better than Murray and Hutson Mason right now. Everthing UGA does defies the laws of nature! no wonder they’re average.

BigTimeTECHFan

June 9th, 2010
8:15 am

This is PrepZone blog not UGA blog.
I was hopeing he would go to Tech as QB / CB, he’s nice pickup for UGA.
that’s 11 signee’s for UGA but only 11 spots left and still a lot of players out there. But so far UGA has very nice class, Tech has started off good to.

Glory Glory

June 9th, 2010
8:16 am

Hahahahahahahaha!!!!

Seriously…. The ENVY coming from the ghetto on North Ave makes me :) bigger than you know.

Typical Tech “fan” quote: “um… we didn’t want that kid anyway. We, um, we only recruit 5 star players with at least a 3.8 GPA, who value an education. Um, um, yeah. Oh and we, um, having bigger fish to fry. Now please, um, come here and let me punch you in the face. My, um, manboobs coach said it was, um, ok.”

EAT IT NERDS!!!!!

Amazing things are taking shape in the great great town of Athens, GA!! Somebody just got mugged in Atlanta!!!

Glory Glory!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Walker, Texas Ranger

June 9th, 2010
8:17 am

Better start looking for a RB, it doesn’t look like we are in the running for any of the studs and what we have is average at best.

Hard to believe this kid is going to play DB. He is the best QB in the state.

JB

June 9th, 2010
8:18 am

UGA only has 17 freshman coming in.They will sign 25 or so for 2011, so the math would be 14 or so spots left. This class will be loaded. A top 5.

Glory Glory

June 9th, 2010
8:23 am

Georgia Tech Football’s new slogan: Thursday Night Lights

JB

June 9th, 2010
8:24 am

Haters getting real nervous about Richt waking up , firing coach’s and getting Serious about recruiting ………just read these blogs……between the lines that is. All 11 commits so far could have gone ANYWHERE. Texas Walker, you are right, we need a stud RB. We may have to go National to get one for this class.

JB

June 9th, 2010
8:26 am

good one jimmy………sat up all night for that one?

Glory Glory

June 9th, 2010
8:28 am

You IDIOTS who are claiming a payoff to this kid’s coach…..

I hope you realize that the kids being recruited read these blogs, and you are seriously planting a seed of hate and disgust in sone of these kids. I hope you understand the fallout in near future recruiting of the friends of the ones you bash.

Keep it up bugs!!!!

(((((30-24)))))
8-1
60-39-5
Recruitment Landslide
We. Run. This. State.

The Octagon

June 9th, 2010
8:30 am

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater , I am the beef.

MOBADTHANGOOD

June 9th, 2010
8:30 am

For all you jerks that come on here with your stupid remarks about Georgia. What have you done besides sit in your chair and try to take credit for something you haven’t ever done. Its always easy for people to say, I would have done that better.
Go make comments on your own teams website.
GO DAWGS!

Glory Glory

June 9th, 2010
8:32 am

Bigger Fish To Fry = IOWA

haha

JB

June 9th, 2010
8:34 am

TECH:
2008: Tech has rings made with the UGA/TECH score on them. first win in years. Johnson hailed all over nerd land

2009: Georgia beats ACC champs on their home field, Told of what a beat down we were in for.
Johnson quote after game, ” we’ve got bigger fish to fry” LOL………..I guess the grease was to hot in the Iowa bowl game, Tech get’s BURNED….LOL…39 yards rushing first half.

Glory Glory

June 9th, 2010
8:34 am

I also love when Tech fans scream about Richt not winning a NC (yet)……

How has your manboobs coach performed in bowl games??

Just like marijuana… frequently SMOKED in bowls.

Washaun Ealey

June 9th, 2010
8:35 am

We. Run. This. Taco. Bell.

Ric Flair

June 9th, 2010
8:36 am

It’s time for you to get a life, JB. Double digit postings before 8:30? Move along, son.

Coyote

June 9th, 2010
8:37 am

I know rivals can’t possibly comment on this without flaming but consider the facts. He wants to play both football and basketball in college. So, when it comes to basketball, he just made the same decision as Marcus Thornton and that was choosing Mark Fox over Paul Hewitt and Anthony Grant. Secondly, he knows his chances of being a 2-sport star are better if he plays DB rather than QB in football and DB is probably his more likely path to the NFL.

So although it would have made perfect sense for him to end up at GT and inherit the job from Nesbitt, when you consider his 2-sport goals and long-term goals, it also makes perfect sense that he chose UGA.

Finally, as a UGA fan, I love the emphasis on the top in-state kids. Sure, an expanded recruiting footprint is great but landing the best our state has to offer should always be the top priority and I’m glad Richt and staff are getting back to that.

destin dawg

June 9th, 2010
8:40 am

techies need not be so negative !! that will not help in recruiting ??? PJ. has work to do !!! I love to see Tech win in the ACC.. no hard feelings…. PMA…. Life is good in Athens !!

Glory Glory

June 9th, 2010
8:40 am

Georgia Tech fans are crapping at the mouth about how their (fired from the football powerhouse, Virginia Cavaliers last year) new DC will make the maggots better withthe 3-4…

Yet they point out UGA will be worse this year bc they are switching to a new DC with his new defensive scheme…. the 3-4.

Worst “fans” in college football. They spend so much time with that “THWG” s*** that they forget to buy tickets to their Thursday Night games.

(((((30-24)))))

Washaun Ealey

June 9th, 2010
8:41 am

Yeah, Coyote, but there are two problems with your comment. First, Tech is almost unquestionably a better path to the NBA and, second, you assume he was going to play QB.

Notso Fast

June 9th, 2010
8:42 am

Best looking quarterback I saw last year. Can throw it a mile. Great addition and I still think he may consider the quarterback position.

Georgia

June 9th, 2010
8:45 am

nerds, Nesbitt is a terrible quarterback.. tough but cant pass or read a defense. Plus without Thomas to pull in hail mary’s every week who is going catch is duck passes? Nick Marshall is smarter, which is why he knows his best chance at the NFL is defensive back = Georgia.

suwaneedawg

June 9th, 2010
8:47 am

Why must Tech fans be so ignorant about the game of college football? Why must they be so jealous when UGA out recruits them every year and continues to dominate them on the field? You need to change your colors to just plain green because by the looks of some of these posts you are green with envy. If I were in your shoes I guess I would be to. Oh well, sucks to be you and it’s great to be a Georgia Bulldog.

Glory Glory

June 9th, 2010
8:48 am

Maybe we should put a “THWGT” flag on Uga’s dawghouse…..

Show the Nerds how retarded they look with their little “THWG” flag on that UGLY little car they parade out on the field before games UGA isn’t even involved in.

Glory Glory

June 9th, 2010
8:50 am

Why don’t girls go out with me?

Rodney Dangerfield

June 9th, 2010
8:53 am

I find it hard to believe that this kid settled to be just another DB at UGA than to be the star at Tech. I am willing to bet this kids wants to play basketball and not football.

JB

June 9th, 2010
8:59 am

Hey Ric – I’m thinking you took to many hits to the head. There are two of us. Check the HBTD!!! vs nada. Silly boy.

HBTD!!!!