Coach: Bulldogs missing boat on 5-star defensive end

Georgia could be one of the favorites for a 5-star defensive end out of Florida but the Bulldogs need to pick up their recruiting efforts if they hope to make a run.

That’s the word from Marc Berman, who coaches Corey Lemonier at Hialeah High School in Hialeah, Fla. He said the Bulldogs and defensive coordinator Willie Martinez were all over Lemonier back in the spring but that they haven’t heard much from them since and they’re not sure why.

“Right now all he’s done is take a trip to Florida State,” Berman said Tusday. “He’s going to take one to Florida and probably to Auburn and he’s probably going to be open on his last trip. Georgia was recruiting him back in the spring but I haven’t heard from Coach Martinez or any of their coaches lately.”

Berman said he and Lemonier attended a Georgia game as unofficial visitors along with another one of his players, defensive tackle Corey Liuget, who eventually signed with Illinois. “So he’s familiar with the program,” Berman said.

Berman was asked if the circumstances would make the Bulldogs an extreme long shot.

“I wouldn’t say that,” he said. “Georgia has always been there. I have a very good relationship with Coach Martinez and I think a lot of the program there. . . . The only thing that needs to happen is they need to make more contact and maybe they can get his last visit.”

It could be that Georgia figures it has enough defensive ends. The Bulldogs already have five committed to sign in the 2010 class, six if you count Douglass’ Garrison Smith, who has and can play on the outside.

The other D-ends on the books are T.J. Stripling of Southwest DeKalb, Dexter Morant of Manning, S.C., Brandon Burrows of Marietta, B.J. Butler of Kissimee, Fla., and Jalen Fields of Dalton. Odds are not all of those prospects will play out on the edge. At least a few could be converted to tackle.

Berman contends few could be better than his guy. Lemonier is 6-foot-4, 235 pounds and has run a 4.6 40. Berman said it’d be worth Georgia’s while to check out his other defensive end. Calvin Smith is 6-5, 280, and has offers from most of the SEC and ACC schools.

“Corey and Calvin both took the same recruiting trip [to Florida State],” Berman said. “Both of them liked it a lot but there’s not favorites right now at this point.”

56 comments Add your comment

GO Dawgs

September 22nd, 2009
12:02 pm

Since we already have 5 DE’s sign for next year’s recruiting class, we could always use another talented DE especially if some of the commitments does not work out.

However, if this DE wants to play for the Dawgs, he needs to make the effort to show that he is interested and will do whatever it takes to EARN that scholarship. Most of these kids want to feel wanted and recruited but like in real life, if you want a job, you will make every effort to show that you are worthy and take necessary actions to get the offer. This recruit needs to show that he wants to play for the Dawgs and if not, he shouldn’t feel slighted if we do not recruit him.


September 22nd, 2009
12:10 pm

Yes we do already have 5 DE commits in this class, but like was mentioned, I see 2 or 3 of them being moved to the inside at DT. This kid sounds like a quick burst off the end and would be a great pick up! Jalen Fields of Dalton will likely move inside and pack on another 25-30lbs. Garrison Smith will also likely pack on some weight and stay inside. We need guys that can get off the end and get the QB off balance in the pocket!


September 22nd, 2009
12:13 pm

Send GarDner to his church, let him sit next to his mamma and grandmamma, I’m sure he will come to UGA then.

Willie's D

September 22nd, 2009
12:19 pm

Come play with me kid.

And it is highly probable...

September 22nd, 2009
12:20 pm

…that the kid does not have the grades to get into UGA, while FSU and Auburn will take him as a “special qualifier”, while UGA no longer does that. It appears that no one else has offered him, either, so he is not really a 5 star player.

Reality Check

September 22nd, 2009
12:37 pm

I love the AJC’s headlines in recruiting when regarding UGA. “Missing the boat”? I am sure this guy can play but we have 5 DE’s already committed not counting Garrison Smith as the poster above says. I don’t think UGA is missing the boat. they have just turned their interest to other prospects at other positions.


September 22nd, 2009
12:48 pm

According to he has been offered a scholarship, so, how could the DAWGS be missing the boat?

Not showing enough love?


September 22nd, 2009
12:55 pm

I cannot see any way that Burrows ever suits up for the Dawgs, so that is one off the list. Right now, Longo and Neland Ball are totally M.I.A., so Cornelius Washington and Justin Houston will be the only two DE’s on the roster next year with experience.

Fabris has missed the boat on DE recruiting, part of the reason why UGA’s defense is so chitty right now. He lost out on Cliff Matthews, who was begging to go to UGA early on, then suddenly switched up late in the process, and UGA never pursued Cunningham for some reason.

BTW, has anyone looked at all the non-qualifiers and JUCO’s on Auburn’s roster? They are like a friggin reform school.

They have a kid named Benton, a 23 year old FRESHMAN who was in the same class as Matthew Stafford. That is ludicrous.

ghost of tk harty

September 22nd, 2009
1:02 pm

Methinks Chip was being metaphorical by virtue of the current weather situation.


September 22nd, 2009
1:08 pm

It looks like we haven’t been recruiting top notch defensive ends lately. Just because we have 5 committments doesn’t mean they are any good. Recruit the best players in the country because the best in the state are going elsewhere.


September 22nd, 2009
1:18 pm

Hey Dude, he ain’t a priority for us, so get over it. We backed off cause we already got better DE committed, if we don’t get any better 5 star d-linemen we’ll get back to you. There’s a line of top notch players that want to be DAWGS, there aint’ room for everybody, if you want to come to UGA you better get on board early or you might fall to FSU or Awbarn.


September 22nd, 2009
1:34 pm

After the play of our D-Ends the last two years 10 need to be brought in. It’s that pathetic! P.S. Tech guys seem to be real quite after that beatdown from the ‘U’ this past week.


September 22nd, 2009
1:34 pm

It must be such an honor to play for UGA. The academics of Harvard blended w/ the talent of the Florida Gators. Some of you need a little perspective about the program.

It sounds as though the DE board is full for UGA. This is an article about a high school coach who’s attempting to generate interest in his players. The end.


September 22nd, 2009
1:39 pm

Mike is right, can’t hear you anymore yech fans, both our records may be 2-1 but we lost top 10 team and you got killed by nobody U. Get some class!


September 22nd, 2009
1:43 pm

Either the kid DOESN’T have the grades……OR Willie’s more worried about the PIT BULLS nipping at his feet!

Montgomery Burns

September 22nd, 2009
1:59 pm

Willie Mart’s defense…..where 4 and 5 star recruits go to die.

St. Bernard

September 22nd, 2009
2:02 pm

I think Willie has bigger problems right now.

Number 1 Gator Fan

September 22nd, 2009
2:02 pm

Not sure why he would not want to come to UGA and finish 2nd in the SEC East for the next 3 or 4 years

Number 1 Goat Fan

September 22nd, 2009
2:16 pm

Hey Bulldogs, Bet that OSU loss still smarts

UF ain't recruiting him either...

September 22nd, 2009
2:17 pm

…no matter what his coach says!


September 22nd, 2009
2:35 pm

If he wanted to go to UGA he needed to get on board. There are stil l2 DE’s on UGA’s radar screen that are the best in the country. They may be long shots but they are better than this guy. Evidently other schools have backed off of him or his coach wouldn’t be talking to UGA.


September 22nd, 2009
2:37 pm

I’m sure CMR and the staff are aware of this guy. We have 18 commits to date I’m not sure how many guys we plan on signing this year. From what I hear we are looking for stud tailback to round out the 2010 class…………….oh and Number 1 Gator Fan we will see what happens when Tebow is not their to carry the team…..can’t wait to see John Brantley run that offense.

And it is highly probable... WHAT?

September 22nd, 2009
2:39 pm

Since when does a kid not get to come to UGA because of grades? Have you ever listened to a post game interview with players? Every single one of them has trouble speaking coherently.

Denver Dog

September 22nd, 2009
2:41 pm

We will get who we are going to get, and if this is someone that we are trying to get, we will get him. And what? have you heard your jackets speak lately?

Hey 78 Dawg--

September 22nd, 2009
2:42 pm

Love to hear the excuses… you lost to a top ten eh? OSU blows if you haven’t checked.

Do you seriously think you would come close to beating Miami? What a joke. There is a reason they have the most players in the NFL you know.

Urban Meyer

September 22nd, 2009
3:06 pm

Sorry Georgia fans, he is coming to play for me at Florida. I also have Martin Luther King high school’s star wide receiver coming to play for me as well.

The Truth

September 22nd, 2009
3:08 pm

#1 Gator Fan- I think UGA is looking at third not second in the SEC East for a while behind us and Tennessee.


September 22nd, 2009
3:13 pm

Why do you TAKE a SWIPE about HOW people talk ??? NOT everyone is SOOOO elegant in SPEAKING as YOU!!! A lot of these kids DON”T have the BASE that YOU DO…..JUST guessing… So CHILL out !!


September 22nd, 2009
3:19 pm

#1 Gator fan
For the record
From 1999 thru present
Gators won loss record is 99 wins vs. 33 losses (not all that outstanding)
Gators won loss bowl record is 4 wins vs. 6 losses (Very poor)
Congratulations on a couple of good years.
By the way Georgia’s bowl record since 1999 is 8 wins vs. 2 losses


September 22nd, 2009
3:20 pm

I am glad to know that tech football players are so articulate. I want then to hear their punt returner Tarant speak how the APD released him after he beat those rape charges. I also want to know if the Tech Fund men paid for him to buy his way out, like they did with thoseree Tech linemen that beat that itty bitty girl up in the 90s. She neededall kinds of facial recon. Wow!!! Mooeny, Lavin and Salsbury on Bobby Ross’s watch.

Goooooooooooooooooo GAWGA !!


September 22nd, 2009
3:20 pm

YOU have a GREAT DC coach, but a CLUELESS head coach. Yes, you guys have the BEST assistant coaches MONEY could BUY…..but you have a QB that is is shaky”like a cat in a room of ROCKING CHAIRS!!!


September 22nd, 2009
3:20 pm

We certainly have a stellar track record the last 4 yrs when it comes to recruiting TALENT on the Defensive side of the ball. Georgia doesn’t have a proven quality DE on the roster. The “whiff’ on the recruiting trail 3 yrs ago when the Dawgs struck out on Eric Berry, Cam Heyward, Alan Bailey and passed Morgan Burnett for John Knox then forgot to contact Cliff Matthews for three weeks is rearing its ugly head. When college coaches get complacent, they get beat. Sit around one recruiting campaign and do nothing, very diffult to play catch up. Coach Richt and staff are paying the price for lazy half a%# recruiting 3 and 4 yrs. back Somebody needs to be replaced, my vote is to replace the Dynamic Duo, the Georgia CO Defensive co-ordinators Martinez and Jancek.


September 22nd, 2009
3:34 pm

We can’t get everyone we want…..Eric Berry dad played at TENN…..they have even signed his brother who’s in middle school…Cam Heyward dad played at PITT and they have relatives up that way…plus he WANTED to go OUT OF STATE….not sure why the BEAST Bailey left but we WANTED him BAD…..Morgan Burnett,whose dad CAP played at UGA, wanted to MAKE a name for himself at another school!


September 22nd, 2009
3:45 pm

This is just a case of the AJC trying to stoke Martinez criticism. If the Dawgs do one thing well, it is recruit and manage that process. I think they have it under control, Chip, thanks.

Montgomery Burns

September 22nd, 2009
3:51 pm

In fairness, the Martinez criticism hardly neeks stoking. The defense has looked like a WAC unit the last two weeks.

Two dawg linebackers hit me and I said ouch

September 22nd, 2009
4:22 pm

Our “D” needs all the help it can get.


September 22nd, 2009
5:34 pm

Coach Martinez can’t call this kid, he’s busy coaching… uh packing – I hope!


September 22nd, 2009
5:57 pm

The kid should call us if he really wants to go to UGA? Is that what somebody said. Just like in life, I think the quote was. I’d suggest getting a clue.

He’s a 5-star recruit. He’s from FLORIDA. He’s visited FSU. He’s going to visit UF (which has won some games lately, from what I hear). And Auburn.

But he’s supposed to chase UGA down because…. for what reason?

It’s called “recruiting” for a reason. This would be like a top corporation that was in the running for a top MBA graduate saying, “He/She knows where we are. They can call us if they want a job.”

Right. UGA is the next thing to heaven in the football world. It’s pretty cool but come on, you have to work at this.

Besides, it’s the kid’s coach talking, not the player. He’s trying to send a message up the road to Athens on behalf of his player. Good for him.

Hey, if the kid’s a 6′ 4′ 5-star and runs a 4.6 40, send me his tape; I’ll give it to Pete Carroll. If UGA doesn’t want him enough to pick up the phone, maybe he’d like sunny Southern California.


September 22nd, 2009
6:15 pm

CWM is probably waiting to see if he still has a job at UGA!! He cannot coach and looks like he cannot recruit as well!! This man is not only giving up tons of yardage but also 5 star recruits. Call this kid. Outta site outta mind you bone head!!!


September 22nd, 2009
6:27 pm


Article seems to be a hatchet job on Coach Matinez.

UGA is bringing in some very good HS talent to shore up defense.May take a year or two to develope.

Here is the situation – you have a 4 star DE ready to commit – do you take him or say – hold off – we are still looking at some kids in Florida. I say – if a talented kid is ready to commit – take his commitment and move forward.

I agree that UGA’s defense is not playing up to past standards – but all the crying and negativity you guys like to do may be affecting recruiting. I read these boards and see the pictures of trash on the campus – you’d have thought UGA is 0-3.

Season has just begun – chill and look at the body of work at the end of the season. IF UGA totally drops the ball – fair enough – hold the staff accountable.



September 22nd, 2009
6:39 pm

Enter your comments here
Morgan Burnett’s brother, Cap, played at Georgia starting as a R-Fr in 1999. Injuries curtailed his Georgia career in 2002.


September 22nd, 2009
6:58 pm

UGA Fans check out this kid. What former dawg does he remind you of?


September 22nd, 2009
7:20 pm

Based on what I’ve seen, Corey and Calvin could start for the Dawgs– right now!

Corey– the Dawgs want you!!


September 22nd, 2009
7:28 pm

either mudcat or brandon miller-guys who produce in hs but cant cut it in the SEC. Champaign should take the Stanford offer and run.


September 22nd, 2009
7:51 pm

I am a high school dropout. Am I am eligible to play for the Dawgs? I would probably improve the team’s GPA.


September 22nd, 2009
8:09 pm

No, but if you abuse girls you can get a scholarship at GT.


September 22nd, 2009
8:28 pm

Georgia needs to recruit as many DE’s as possible. Hell, they can’t rush the passer. Maybe, 1 of 6 will turn into a pro prospect. I wouldn’t count on any stars until Willie Martinez leaves.


September 22nd, 2009
8:30 pm

Mudcat Elmore was a 5 star that panned out. Yeah, right. You never know about these kids. David Greene and David Pollack, I believe were no better than 3 stars. Thomas Davis was a 3 star. You recruit as many as you can.

41 38 49 38 45 24 37 41

September 22nd, 2009
8:55 pm

If this kid was smart he would tell Willie to take a hike . UGA’s D aint the same since the departure of BVG. Go to Florida kid where championships are won.

RH in Dunwoody

September 22nd, 2009
9:17 pm

Martinez was just quoted saying “ends? we doon need no stinkin’ ends, dat would mess up our scheme – we doon wanna pressure QB, he might miss a throw”