Archive for February, 2010

New NCAA recruiting rule aims at head coaches in waiting

If upheld in its current form, a new NCAA rule will effectively put an end to the practice of schools designating a head-coach-in-waiting.

A new NCAA rule treats Texas head-coach-in-waiting Will Muschamp (L) just like actual head coach Mack Brown in terms of recruiting contact. (UT Photography)

A new NCAA rule treats Texas head-coach-in-waiting Will Muschamp (L) just like actual head coach Mack Brown in terms of recruiting contact. (UT Photography)

At its convention in Atlanta last month, the NCAA passed to little fanfare a new bylaw that treats a head-coach-in-waiting like an actual head coach in terms of recruiting contact. A head coach is allowed only a single visit per recruit and cannot leave campus during the the critical spring evaluation period from April 15-May 31. Same now for a head-coach-designate.

There are only two head-coaches in waiting in America: Georgia alum and Texas defensive coordinator Will Muschamp and Ralph Friedgen’s offensive coordinator at Maryland, James Franklin.

Proposed by the Big East last June and approved last month, the rule was supported by the football issues committee was because it felt it …

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Andy McCollum pumped about recruiting for Georgia Tech

New Georgia Tech recruiting coordinator Andy McCollum has been recruiting Greater Atlanta and the state of Georgia for years for N.C. State and Middle Tennessee State. (AP photo)

New Georgia Tech recruiting coordinator Andy McCollum has been recruiting Greater Atlanta and the state of Georgia for years for N.C. State and Middle Tennessee State. (AP photo)

Our Georgia Tech beat writer Doug Roberson had a chance to talk to the Yellow Jackets’ new recruiting coordinator and defensive line coach Andy McCollum yesterday as McCollum made the long drive down from Raleigh to Atlanta. Doug had a write-up on McCollum in today’s paper but saved McCollum’s recruiting commentary for us.

McCollum is leaving N.C. State to take over for former Tech assistant Giff Smith, who left to join Chan Gailey with the Buffalo Bills. Those of us who have known McCollum since he was head coach at Middle Tennessee State University know the Marietta native for his down-home sense of humor and sharp wit. He’s long been known in college football circles for his bright football mind and recruiting acumen. He has always recruited the Greater Atlanta area, especially at MTSU when he …

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Offers flowing in for Union Grove’s Rivals250 DB Avery Walls

Union Grove defensive back Avery Walls got an official offer from LSU this week, No. 7 overall, but still hasn't received a proposition from Tech or Georgia. (Jeff Hurndon/www.jhurndon.com)

Union Grove defensive back Avery Walls got an official offer from LSU this week, No. 7 overall, but still hasn't received a proposition from Tech or Georgia. (Jeff Hurndon/www.jhurndon.com)

Recruiting is picking up significantly for Union Grove defensive back Avery Walls.

The 5-foot-11, 184-pound junior received his seventh official scholarship offer of the year Wednesday night when he received a letter from LSU. The Tigers join Mississippi State, Oklahoma, Stanford, Northwestern, East Carolina and Connecticut in the pursuit of Walls’ services. Texas A&M is expected to be next in line and more are sure to come.

Walls attended Alabama’s junior day two weeks ago and plans to go to Florida’s this week.

Curiously, Walls still has not gotten an offer from either of the state schools. His mother said the Bulldogs, who got commitments from two safeties after their Jan. 30 junior day, are probably full at the position. Meanwhile the Jackets signed five defensive backs last week.

But …

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Ten at 10: Urban Meyer thinks Mack Brown a big get for Gators

THE TEN AT 10:

1. Dogged by double hamstring injuries all last season, M.L. King’s Mack Brown did not have the senior year everybody expected. Opening as the state’s top-rated tailback, he barely managed 1,000 yards for the Lions. But that hasn’t dampened the enthusiasm of Florida coach Urban Meyer, who labeled Brown one of the most important acquisitions in the Gators’ No. 1-ranked recruiting class of 2010. “I love Mack Brown and when I say I love Mack Brown I love everything about his family,” Meyer told GatorBait.net. “I love his family, his mother is a great lady and his sister and his father is the guy I got closest with. He might be the highest-rated back we’ve gotten since we’ve been here. He’s got to get healthy and when you watch him on tape it reaffirms, I did that about three weeks ago, I watched him on tape and he’s tremendous. We need to have him ready to go right now. He has the size to become a 210-pound back which we need.”

2. Meyer was pretty pumped about …

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Georgia Tech’s class short on star power, long on meeting needs

BJBostic

Georgia Tech signee and early enrollee B.J. Bostic is going to start out at cornerback but could play almost anywhere on the field for Yellow Jackets. (AJC photo by Jason Getz)

Georgia Tech’s 2010 recruiting class is kind of hard to figure.

The Yellow Jackets never seem to blow away the national pundits, and this year was no different. Their group of 18 signees rated a No. 41 ranking from Scout.com and a No. 43 from Rivals.com. But Tech never seems to garner a very high national recruiting ranking — average of 43.25 over previous four years per Rivals — and, last time I checked, it remains the defending ACC champion.

And it was a small class, seven below the NCAA allowed maximum of 25. So that’s going to impact the ranking as well. In that case it’s probably more accurate — and I use the term loosely here — to refer to the signees’ average star rating. Based on Rivals’ assessment that’s a very respectable 3.17 stars, which ranks 26th overall. Scout’s is a little lower at an …

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Looking back on Signing Day 2010, forward to Class 2011

I’m back. I know you’re thrilled.

I took the first couple of days of the week off to catch my breath after the first week of the national signing period. And a crazy, intense week it was, especially national signing day. I had more than 120 Tweets and 40 blog posts that one day alone. And I want to thank you for the nearly 700,000 page views that day. It was a blur of a day.

Of course, the signings continued after that notable first Wednesday in February passed. I hope you have been checking back as we’ve continued to update the list of the state of Georgia’s signees, which grows with each passing day. We’ll keep adding them as they keep coming in so let us know if anybody’s missing.

When I last left you I had just assessed Georgia’s 2010 recruiting class and provided some details on how Calhoun’s Nash Nance and Da’Rick Rogers both ended up at Tennessee. That subject clearly remains a hot-button issue as it elicited nearly 1,000 comments (and that’s not counting the dozens …

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Working list of state’s college football signees (updated)

UPDATED WEDNESDAY, FEB. 10 . . .

Here are all the signings to date in the state of Georgia this year (sorted by high school classification and school) as complied by high school historian and AJC correspondent Steve Slay. The recruiting period continues until May 31 so it’s work in progress. Coaches, please be sure to let us know if one of your players is missing:

CLASS AAAAA

ALPHARETTA

Michael Bennett – Georgia

Justin Burns – Delaware

Connor Hollenbeck – Washington & Lee

Brandon Terry – Wake Forest

BERKMAR

Norman Booker – Hampton

BRADWELL INSTITUTE

Sheldon Barnes – Savannah State

Darvean Herron – Savannah State

Ulrick John – Georgia State

BROOKWOOD

Donovan Barker – Brevard

Julian Suber – Georgia Southern

CAMDEN COUNTY

Jeremiah Booth – Wofford

Ean Days – Illinois

Robert Gabriel – Carson-Newman

Zach Griffiths – Carson-Newman

Matt Jackson – South Carolina State

Glenn Mack – Georgia Military (JUCO)

Steven Murphy – South Carolina State

Derrick Saulsberry – Delaware

Kevin Steele – …

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Nance’s friendship main reason Da’Rick Rogers now with Vols

The power of friendship cannot be underestimated in the decisions of Calhoun's Da'Rick Rogers (left) and Nash Nance to sign with Tennessee. (AJC photo by Bob Andres)

The power of friendship cannot be underestimated in the decisions of Calhoun's Da'Rick Rogers (left) and Nash Nance to sign with Tennessee. (AJC photo by Bob Andres)

It requires some context to understand Da’Rick Rogers’ decision to leave Georgia at the altar on the eve of national signing day and follow his best friend Nash Nance to Tennessee.

And make no mistake about it — Nance and his family are the primary reason Rogers signed with the Vols.

“The power of friendship is huge,” Rogers told the AJC’s Bob Andres after he signed his letter-of-intent with UT on Wednesday.

Despite coming from divergent backgrounds, Rogers and Nance are indeed the best of friends. They met while they were attending the Darlington School, a private boarding school in Rome.

“We’re pretty much like brothers, black and white brothers,” Rogers said in a previous interview with the AJC.

Said Nance: “He’s more like a brother than a friend. I’ll always be there for him.”

That close relationship extends …

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Georgia Bulldogs’ 2010 class a lot better than advertised

As for Georgia’s 2010 recruiting class, I don’t think it was nearly the failure it’s being made out to be.

Granted, the Bulldogs lost a lot of prospects toward the end. In total four recruits that were committed before the season began backed out and signed with other teams by signing day, most notably five-star wide receiver Da’Rick Rogers of Calhoun.

And Georgia whiffed on a lot of high-profile talent it tried to land at the end. Five-star athlete Christian Green of Tampa signed with Florida State, as did Lowndes linebacker Telvin Smith (don’t kid yourself, this was close and Jimbo Fisher was sweating it). Defensive tackle Jeff Whitaker went to Auburn. And receivers Kadron Boone (LSU), Adrian Coxson (Florida) and Jordan Akins (UCF) all went elsewhere. The fact that the Bulldogs finished second on most of those players means nothing.

But recruiting is, after all, about the players you bring in. And Georgia brought in some really good ones.

It was routinely being reported …

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Ten at 10: Like Lane Kiffin, Derek Dooley targets Georgia

THE TEN AT 10:

Derek Dooley was all smiles after his first Tennessee recruiting class was inked on Wednesday.

Derek Dooley was all smiles after his first Tennessee recruiting class was inked on Wednesday.

1. In case you didn’t get the point on national signing day, new Tennessee coach Derek Dooley reiterated in comments to reporters that, like his predecessor Lane Kiffin, the state of Georgia is going to be a primary recruiting target for the Vols. “One thing that is certain is that we have to do a good job in the state of Georgia, among other states,” Vince Dooley’s youngest son said. “There’s a lot of good football players in that state. In the past in all my years watching this program, when they’ve won, they’ve had some very good players come out of Georgia.” The Vols signed six players from Georgia on Wednesday, including the No. 1-rated prospect, Calhoun wide receiver Da’Rick Rogers.

2. New USC coach Lane Kiffin was being lauded Wednesday for landing the nation’s No. 1 prospect, 6-foot-8, 338-pound offensive lineman Seantrel Henderson of St. Paul, Minn. That …

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