Norcross ‘late bloomer’ Hubbard covered up with offers

The college football coach that ends up with Adrian Hubbard on his team come national signing day in February will need to send a thank you note to senior class at Norcross High School.

Why? Because, ultimately, they were the ones that allowed Hubbard to return to the football field after a year’s hiatus. And now, the 6-foot-7, 227-pound defensive end/tight end is one of the unexpected grand prizes in Atlanta’s recruiting class of 2010.

Hubbard is a rarity in the modern age of college football recruiting. That is, he came into his senior year a virtual unknown. Hubbard played football as a sophomore at Peachtree Ridge but he transferred to Norcross as a junior in order to play basketball for the Blue Devils. He did not play football.

This past summer, Hubbard came to coach Keith Maloof and told him that he missed the game and wished to come out for the team. You could only imagine Maloof’s delight as he stared up at the at the towering athletic figure. But he did not accept Hubbard’s request on the spot. He put it to a vote of his seniors.

“He said he really wanted to play football, that he missed it more than he thought he would,” Maloof  recounted recently. “So I told him I’d have to ask my seniors. They’d worked hard for four years and all of the sudden you’re coming in. So I’ll have to talk to them.”

The seniors, most of whom already knew Hubbard, gave him unanimous approval.

“Kids know if somebody’s a good kid or not,” Maloof said. “They just know. So they let him come out.”

Said Hubbard:  “I always loved football. I don’t know why I stopped playing it. I just told Coach Maloof how I felt about the situation and I was blessed enough to be allowed back on the team.”

Hubbard and about 15  major college football programs are eternally grateful. That’s about how many scholarship offers have come Hubbard’s way, most of them late in the year.

“The latest offers I’ve had are from Alabama, FSU and Auburn,” Hubbard said on Sunday. “Georgia offered me on Thursday.”

Georgia? The team that already has commitments from five defensive ends?

“Yes, sir,” Hubbard said. “I hadn’t really heard from them in a while. But I’m sure they’re like most colleges and gave most of their offers out before the season. I’m a late bloomer, so I’m guessing one of their prospects didn’t meet requirements of the SAT or something and the offer came. I think they probably wanted to offer me before but they couldn’t. . . . I don’t hold it against them. I’m open to everybody. I’m looking at all of them and having fun with it.

He’s also holding offers from North Carolina, South Carolina, N.C. State, Clemson and Maryland, among others.

“It goes on and on and on,” Maloof said. “He’s a 6-7, 227-pound athlete that runs a 4.4 and he’s had a great year at defensive end. So opportunities have come to his door and I’m excited for him. He’s a great kid and he’s been fun to coach. I wish I had coached him for four years.”

And a lot of folks hope they have him for the next four. Hubbard went on an unofficial visit to Alabama for the LSU game this past Saturday. He’s heading up to South Carolina for a second time this coming weekend for the Gamecocks’ game against Florida. That will be an official visit. He’s already been up to Maryland and Vanderbilt.

Hubbard said he plans to take all five of his official visits, with Alabama and FSU definitely on the list but not yet set up. He hasn’t decided who will get the other two. He said he will make his final decision public at the Under Armour All-America Game on Jan. 2 in Orlando.

What will be the deciding factors?

“The school has to have my major (forensics and/or criminal justice),” he said. “And what other kinds of kids am I going to be surrounded with, how will I fit in with the school, the people that go there, my teammates and coaches? Mostly I’m looking for a winning tradition. I like that atmosphere.”

31 comments Add your comment

ghldawg

November 9th, 2009
12:04 pm

Adrian, Become a Dawg!!! Surely you can see that you would walk right in to a clearly open competition. That is our greatest need on “D”.

collegeballfan

November 9th, 2009
12:05 pm

Who ever gets him apparently is getting a winner. He sounds like he has all the intangibles well in hand. Best wishes young man. We could use you at GT but understand on the major.

Saint Simons

November 9th, 2009
12:17 pm

Auburn 77 Uga 0!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Carpets of Dalton Bowl rescinds invitation!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dawgs forever!

November 9th, 2009
12:18 pm

We NEED athletes on the defensive side of the ball!! Hopefully, he wants to be a Dawg. Good for him that he has a lot of schools interested in him. Also, don’t believe all the haters online who will say terrible things about the Dawgs! They are usually the same people who claim to be Dawg fans, but are either Tech, UF, Auburn, UT, SC, Alabama or LSU fans who will talk about how everything is going down in Athens. They even have the “Great AJC” writers talking about it. The writers know they can “stir the pot” writing about the “down year” at UGA. We will be fine and be on the winning team and part of the solution!! Go Dawgs!!

ghldawg

November 9th, 2009
12:20 pm

You can play some TE as well…heck, Fox can always use another big man on the b-ball team…Come to UGA!!!

Mark Badly

November 9th, 2009
1:11 pm

Mr. Hubbard the program in decline (formerly known as the georgia bulldogs) needs you, so when the all the other 58 star de don’t qualify, get arrested or turn out to not be so good after all, you’ll get plenty of playing time. Just remember, don’t hit anyone until after the whistle blows and work on your trash talking and posturing, cause it ain’t the record that matters, it’s how much you pretend to be a bad axx between plays. And if you don’t come to georgia we didn’t offer you anyway.

UGA grad/fan

November 9th, 2009
1:25 pm

Adrian, you are a class act and deserve this exposure. UGA will provide you with all the tools to accomplish your dreams; both in sport and life. Stay close to home and help out the DAWGS, we would greatly appreciate it!! BEST OF LUCK TO YOU.

Joe Blow

November 9th, 2009
1:45 pm

45-19 – hahahahahahahaha

EW

November 9th, 2009
2:58 pm

Best of luck Adrian, as a Norcross alum, I am proud you are a Blue Devil. You sound like a young man with a bright future wherever you decide to call home. Keep your head on straight and you will be just fine. Congrats on your success thus far.

EW

November 9th, 2009
3:00 pm

Correct me if I am wrong, but it’s a rare thing to read that someone is choosing where to play football based on whether or not they have his major. I must be dreaming! He’s putting academics BEFORE football. That says all you need to know about this kid.

Mark in Norcross

November 9th, 2009
3:02 pm

Adrian is a terrific young man that I know mainly from his basketball play at Norcross. He has his priorities in order and has a great family supporting him. He will be an asset to any team / school / employer, etc. that he is associated with. Congratulations Adrian!

Duke Yellowjacket

November 9th, 2009
3:28 pm

“I’m opened to everybody.”

Chip: Were those Adrian’s words … or are you with the UGA journalism degree that STUPID?

I think the latter.

jdawg

November 9th, 2009
5:59 pm

I did not know a coach had to let a team of seniors vote to let someone play. I thought this was high school sports and each year is a new year…..I guess they are big enough that they can do that….oh well, even the GHSA messed up today with the playoffs….must be a new week….are the SEC officials far behind….

CBB 1-Younger Bro

November 9th, 2009
7:57 pm

Hey Duke Yellowjacket,
Do you have nothing better to do than point out typos on a blog?? I bet you that Chip Towers has more brains in his toes than you do in your entire geek of a brain. Go back down to your mother’s basement and finish applying the Clearasil. If you don’t like his blog, then don’t read it!!!

richtisthenewfulmer

November 9th, 2009
8:14 pm

Play bball young man, too big and light for the nfl, a knee injury waiting to happen.

FL NFL Gamecock

November 9th, 2009
8:23 pm

Enter your comments here

FL NFL Gamecock

November 9th, 2009
8:25 pm

Adrian,

The Gamecock Nation is looking forward to seeing you this weekend !!

hey, richtisthenewfulmer

November 9th, 2009
8:36 pm

Do you really think that after a summer of workouts and feed troughs the guy is still going to be 227? I believe Leonard Pope was around 225-230 when he came out of high school. I believe he was on the Cardinals Super Bowl team last year at about 270.

GAFAN

November 9th, 2009
10:08 pm

I am proud of Adrian. However, I do have concern about 18 year olds controlling the fate of a student athelete. I think that is way too much empowerment for 18 year olds. Just think what would have happened if you had a group of immature seniors who would have seen Adrian as a threat and not as a great addition to the team. I am glad it turned to to be the latter. In the future, I would suggest the coach gets to know the player before putting the vote to a bunch of 18 year olds.

jcabama

November 9th, 2009
10:17 pm

If Ga wants class defensive players, they better find a class defensive coordinator–their product the last few years has been less than SECish!

br549

November 9th, 2009
11:11 pm

Dawgs about to lose TJ Stripling to Tech!!!!!!

UGA football a sinking ship!!!!!!!!!!

BAMA FAN #2

November 10th, 2009
2:47 am

Come to ALABAMA and be the jack linebacker and get coached up to the NFL!! RTR

Marcus

November 10th, 2009
7:02 am

Mr. Hubbard, don’t forget FAMU. When all the big schools back out near Signing Day saying the allotment at that position is filled, keep us in mind. Remember, our coach, then at Hampton University, had 5 invitees to the NFL Combine in ‘07… and he has had players go in the draft: DL Kendall Langford, Marcus Dixon, LB Justin Durant.

Paddy

November 10th, 2009
9:09 am

Go where they have the course work you want. Wonderful plan. I will also bet you are up to 260-270 lbs before too long also. Good luck with your plan.

sr citizen dawg

November 10th, 2009
10:55 am

Dont listen to the hype from those with self-serving interests. KNOW THYSELF and make your decision based on your needs and wants and not those who would try to unduly influence you.

wiley

November 10th, 2009
12:15 pm

Chip how come you have so much trouble covering GT recruiting? We just had a top 60 SG commit to the basketball program yesterday. In addition TJ Stripling(A UGA commit) has expressed interest in GT’s football program and has received an offer from Paul Johnson after taking several unofficial visits to GT. If this is a recruiting blog…than it should cover GT and UGA….

Big time?? Not

November 10th, 2009
12:58 pm

Four tickets, four cokes, four hot dogs

ronnie

November 10th, 2009
9:43 pm

We got the offense Now we working on the defense Get on board WAR EAGLE

George

November 13th, 2009
6:53 am

A great addition to whichever college he chooses. Been a bright star at Norcross this past season, and agree with Coach Maloof, Wish he had played for 4 years. Also, one of the anchors on the Basketball team..stay tuned for more from this gem….

battyhalt

November 18th, 2009
11:44 am

What’s up the whole world, I’m redone to the forum and just wanted to bid hey.

globeflyer

December 8th, 2009
1:43 pm

….the Tide keeps rolling….