OK, so now I’ve talked to Christian Green’s father, Hiram Green. He accompanied his five-star recruit son to Athens this past weekend for his official visit at Georgia.
I refuse to give up my pursuit of Christian, however. I’ve been trying to reach the 6-foot-2, 195-pound wide receiver prospect from Tampa since Sunday. Dad says he’s going to help me out with that. Says his son’s phone troubles are the reason for my struggles.
“He’s having some problems with his phone,” Hiram Green says. “It keeps going in and out on him. At least he told ME his phone’s not working [laughs]. He wants me to get him a new one.”
Word is Christian is a very smart young man. Hmmm. Avoid calls and get a new phone out of the deal. Brilliant!
Anyway, for what it’s worth, I talked to Mr. Green about his impressions of their trip to Athens last weekend and Christian’s recruitment going forward.
“My impression was the entire trip was good,” said Hiram Green, who played basketball at South Florida University and works there as an public affairs administrator in the College of Medicine. “Of course, as a parent I look at it from a totally different perspective. You want the school they go to help them go to the next level, not just as an athlete but as a person. I look at Georgia with absolutely no reservations in that regard with what Coach [Mark] Richt has put together there. I’d have no qualms whatsoever if Christian decided to go there.”
Mr. Green said his son is also considering Florida State, Florida and South Florida and admits those first two are a getting a little more consideration than the last one. His wife, Christian’s mother, actually attended FSU, as did Christian’s cousin, E.G. Green, who was a star wide receiver under then-offensive-coordinator Mark Richt. But Hiram says none of them are pushing their alma maters on Christian.
“At the end of the day it’s going to be his decision,” Hiram Green said. “I’m happy that South Florida is one of his choices but I don’t want him to go there just because it’s my school and I don’t him to go to FSU because my wife went there. It has to be where his heart is.”
I asked Mr. Green if South Florida’s stunning upset over Florida State would impact his son’s decision at all. “No,” he said, “but it has been a lot of fun for me. I keep calling my wife and asking her what the score was. She says she’s not going to answer my calls anymore. . . . But it’s been incredible here on campus. Unbelievable. As an alumnus I’m excited.”
Hiram Green said he thinks Georgia has as good a shot as any of Christian’s final choices.
“No question it’s serious,” Mr. Green said. “We’d been to Georgia twice before. And all those connections he has [to Georgia] make a difference in his mind and in my mind. I just think Coach Richt has done an outstanding job with that program. He’s builds football players and he builds young men. E.G. talks a lot about [Richt] as a person and a coach and what a tremendous influence he’s been in his life. And he and Christian are very close.
“But Christian’s taking nothing for granted. That’s why he narrowed it down to these few schools, so he could really take everything under consideration.”
As for a timeline for Christian’s decision, Mr. Green wasn’t sure.
“It could be a situation where he wants to go back and visit the other schools or it could be a situation where he just decides to make up his mind right then and there,” he said. “I won’t be surprised if he just stands up today and says, ‘this is it.’”