JaWuan James reflects on an entire weekend in Athens

It wasn’t an official visit  to Georgia this past weekend for JaWuan James but it was about as close as you could get without it actually being one.

JaWuan James

JaWuan James

The coveted offensive tackle from North Gwinnett High School in Suwanee spent all day and all night Saturday and part of the day Sunday in Athens. As it turns out, he has become pretty good friends with Chris Burnette, a freshman offensive lineman from LaGrange who is being redshirted by the Bulldogs this season. James crashed Saturday night in Burnette’s dormitory room after hanging out with him and several other players after the game.

“He’s a real good guy and we get along well,” James said of Burnette. Like James, Burnette is a high academic achiever and was a salutatorian for his senior class. James is on track to graduate at the end of this semester and will enroll in the college of his choice in January.

As for the actual visit, James  said, “It was fun. I had a great time. I watched the game, which was exciting. The atmosphere was fun and exciting. It was good to hang out with the players after the game. I really enjoyed that. They were a super group and treated me nice even though they weren’t happy about the way the game went.”

As I reported Monday, James said the outcome of the LSU game — just like the outcomes of any of the other games he has attended and will attend — won’t influence James’ final decision on a college choice.

“It doesn’t have an effect at all,” said James, a one-time Alabama commitment. “I’m just looking at the campus and getting back in touch with the coaches in person. I’m trying interact with the players and other recruits. It was an exciting game overall and the atmosphere was great. But who won or lost wasn’t a factor.”

If anything James was intrigued to see how the Bulldogs handled the loss. He was in the Georgia locker room after the game.

“I was listening to what Coach [Mark] Richt said to the team after the game,” James said. “He was telling them ‘we’ve still got a chance to win the East and that’s what we need to focus on.’ I thought that was interesting. I was impressed with the way they handled it because it was a really tough loss. I think they handled it as well as could be expected.”

It was James’ second visit to Sanford Stadium this fall — he also came for Arizona State last weekend — and might not be his last. He said Richt still wants him to come back for an official visit.

“Coach Richt has asked me to so we’re going to see if we can get it done,” James said. “He thinks it’d be a good idea.”

But the battle for James is far from over. He’ll be in Knoxville next weekend for the Tennessee-Georgia game as an official visitor for the Vols. He and teammate Justin Dickens will travel to Los Angeles the next week on an official visit to UCLA. Meanwhile, he claims he hasn’t completely shut the door on Alabama.

James admits his head is swimming a little bit right now.

“It can be tough but I’m dealing with it pretty well,” James said. “I’m really just trying to take it all in without it being a distraction for my team. My main focus is try to help my school win a state championship.”

24 comments Add your comment


October 6th, 2009
6:19 am

georgia need to get some play maker on defense


October 6th, 2009
6:23 am

JaWuan, you are an impressive young man. Know your head is swimming while trying to make this tough decision. It would be an honor to have you join the DAWGS. But, whatever you do, it sounds like you have a great future. It’s refreshing to see a young person who understands what is important in life.


October 6th, 2009
9:05 am

I wish he would drop the “hasn’t shut the door on Bama” stuff. He has made his call and I think the Bama staff has moved on….Obviously, he has as well. If I were him, I don’t think I would make my decision based on the coaching staff at UGA; it may not be the one that coaches him…


October 6th, 2009
9:36 am

As a UGA grad, I am hearingfrom tons and tons of life long pals that are disgusted by the ENTIRE staff at UGA. Last year, it was like “well, um, 2009 will be a fun year with young guns and the D will be much better, as CWM must have gotten the message after the dismal 08 season’s let down.”
Now ALl of the coaches need to be either fired in December ( especially if we lose two or three”more games ) and CMR must be given an ultimatum ……….”win big in 10 or we make major changes that affect you” should be the message.


October 6th, 2009
9:58 am

Good luck JaWuan with your decision. Saban will take the same stance with you that he does with other commits – you shop and he will shop the scholorship. We will win Championships with or without you. RTR


October 6th, 2009
10:06 am

JaWaun, please note that for some strange reason, sports programs of all types, both College and pro, have a small, but vocal group of folks who hate their own lives and project their personal failures and frustrations on “their ballclub”. Granted, they never played a down…never went through 2 a days… don’t know gap, on, over from the Gap over at the mall…you know the drill… in any case, I am sure you are smart enough to ignore them and smart enough to know that most of them do not have the same level of expectations in their personal lives as they do for the old ballclub… have fun with the recruiting thing… you have plenty of good options… don’t beleive 90% of what most of them tell you…talk to the players… you will learn the most from them as far as what the deal is…best of luck


October 6th, 2009
10:51 am

its obvious we need help at the Offensive Line-is Ben Jones hurt-he has not played like he did his freshmen year


October 6th, 2009
12:03 pm

bamafan… what championships have you won under saben? he over recruits and will leave a kid out there hanging just like he did at LSU. Bama has one good season since who knows when and now you’re champions……….. yeah right.

Ted Striker

October 6th, 2009
12:25 pm

JaWuan James sounds like a top notch guy, the kinda person you want on your team. Would love to see him in the red and black but no matter where he goes I wish him a lot of personal success.

richard cranium

October 6th, 2009
12:26 pm

Chip – Do you work on commission??

Hungry Dawg

October 6th, 2009
12:47 pm

Shards1967 nothing disgust me more than having someone pretend to talk for a large part of the fan base. I’m a 72 grad of UGA and I well remember the Goff and Donnan years and can tell you that I am more than happy with Richt and I put my trust in his judgement. Best winning record in the SEC over the last 8 years and the 6th best record of any Div. 1 school over that same period says a lot. You make it sound like a 10-3 season last year was a disaster and all the coaches fault that we had 19 season ending injuries.

Yes so we have 2 losses both to top 10 teams one of which was the first game of the season with a sick QB and the other a game we could have won except for a very bad excessive celebration call. Yeh maybe LSU would have scored anyway, but no one will ever know and to me it’s a crime when the refs make a bad potentially game changing call in the last minutes of a game.

The season still has a lot of football left and we still have a shot at both the Eastern Div. Championship and the SEC Championship. The one thing that I have taken away from the games that we have played so far this year is that there is no quit in these Dawg’s. These Dawg’s show a lot of character which is a lot more than I can say for you!!


October 6th, 2009
12:52 pm

Shards1967 isn’t really a DAWG, he’s just trying to play mind games, obviously he’s a fan of another team trying to influence recruits by posting B.S.

Murray County Indian

October 6th, 2009
12:54 pm

Mark Richt gets millions, his staff is one of the top 4 highest paid in the country, We have some of the best facilities, top 5 recruiting classes every year and we are so far behind florida and alabama I can’t stand it. We are 3-2, underdogs to a tennessee team that is terrible and can’t complete a pass, we still have auburn, florida & tech left? So if we beat tenn tech, kentucky and vandy and loose the others and we’ll be underdogs in all those games we are 6-6. Really? Really? What is Richt getting paid for? Recruiting is not and end to a means! Maybe he’s getting paid for penalties, that would make sense. You have a lot of penalties in one game that’s one thing. But game after game, year after year, CMR either condones it or he doesn’t have the cahones to stop it.


October 6th, 2009
12:57 pm

Dogman 31-0 at the half in your house in the middle of your blackout. What did you say, looooooooooooooser.


October 6th, 2009
1:13 pm

UGA lost in the final minute on a bad call by a Tech grad ref ( I smell bias here since he has flagged UGA with non existing prnalities before) and as I recall Tech lost to LSU in a blowout in the bowl game. UGA can get this ref back by crushing Tech and knocking them out of a key bowl game at the end of the year. This ref should be reprimanded and not allowed to ref another game UGA is in. Better yet – he should be terminated.


October 6th, 2009
1:14 pm

How bad does Urban want to win – bad enough to risk Tebow’s health and future?


October 6th, 2009
1:41 pm

Well Jawaun, you have great opportunities ahead of you with your choices of colleges. Many people are proud that you are graduating early which shows your work ethic in the classroom. In addition I heard you already are qualified too for school. I am reading some blogs about what you should do and which school to attend and most are from people life aforementioned have never even played a down of football in their life but yet football is their life and writing dumb comment on blogs is their jobs. It seems as if your head is screwed on straight and you are looking well into this decision being more than a 4 year decision but rather a 40 year decision (life after football) for all the dumb blogs about only football cooments. Continue to stay in prayer, talk with your family and make the best decision for you. Winning traditions, Realtionships with coaches, Quality of education, and playing time are all good factors to weigh on. Good job young man… its a breath of fresh air to see a “student athlete” again.


October 6th, 2009
2:33 pm

James go to Ga! You can expect Florida to beat you every year. Paul Johnson looks like he will whip Ga’s butt with weaker players. But hey, you didn’t upset the home state.


October 6th, 2009
3:00 pm

Mr. James, you sound very impressive. I hope you come to UGA. That ref is totally out of touch with a game to call that penalty at that point of a game. Totally out of touch!


October 6th, 2009
4:52 pm

flo-ri-DUH, just to let you know that you are now in the lead for the most stupid blogger in the AJC. Put up some facts, name, date of graduation and any other ID you have. If it is true, then kindly reprint. UGA is not the only team that gets bum calls. If you are gonna blame anyone, blame Dooley.


October 6th, 2009
6:24 pm

James will be a Dawg,guess he did not want to worry with the cheaters in Tuscaloosa.

Recruiting Info with Video: http://www.squidoo.com/FootballRecruiting2010

Mister NFL

October 6th, 2009
11:00 pm


He’s going to utn because he’s on the take, from what I’ve heard…$$$$$

The rest of this b.s. crap is for the fans.

People are so gullible.

Sautee Dawg

October 7th, 2009
8:00 am

Sounds like James is staying east of the Bama line. All those championships that Bamy has won lately are hanging on the wall out in UTAH!!


October 7th, 2009
10:20 am

Mr. James…..Tennessee is in need of talented Offensive Linemen, and your opportunity to contribute, and likely to win a starting role, will come very early in your career on The Hill.

Come to Knoxville and be a part of the resurgence of UT’s program.