OLB Sterling Bailey becomes 8th UGA commitment (updated)

Sterling Bailey is flanked by (L) Pastor Veola Thomas of the Church of Life Deliverance Tabernacle and (R) his parents Laura and Kevin Bailey. (Photo by Chip Towers)

Sterling Bailey is flanked by (L) Pastor Veola Thomas of the Church of Life Deliverance Tabernacle and (R) his parents Laura and Kevin Bailey. (Photo by Chip Towers)

GAINESVILLE – Georgia landed its eighth commitment of the 2011 recruiting class on Friday. And he’s a good one.

Sterling Bailey, a 6 foot-5, 268-pound defensive end/outside linebacker from East Hall High School, chose the Bulldogs from an offer list of 25 colleges. Bailey said his finalists were Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Notre Dame, South Carolina and Tennessee.

As seems to be a recurring theme in Georgia’s 2011 class, Bailey said family and Christianity played a big part in his decision.

“The reason I chose Georgia is I like being close to my home and family,” he said. “It’s far enough away to be on my own but close enough to come home and see my family. And I also like it because Coach [Mark] Richt, when I talk to him it’s not all about football. He talks to me about spiritual things in life. I like that he’s a spiritual man. I’m a spiritual man myself.”

Bailey was accompanied during his announcement by his parents, Kevin and Laura Bailey, and two of his pastors from Church of Life Deliverance Tabernacle in Lula (his hometown). Also in attendance was his brother, Korentheus Bailey, who plays defensive tackle at Western Kentucky, and his older sister Lelonda and East Hall coach Bryan Gray.

Bailey

Bailey

A small crowd of about 50 friends, family and teammates were scattered throughout the bleachers in the East Hall basketball gym. Among them was teammate Chaz Cheeks, a Georgia Tech commitment who did his best to get Bailey to follow him to The Flats.

Bailey said his bond with Georgia went beyond Richt. He spoke early and often about new defensive coordinator Todd Grantham.

“When he first arrived at Georgia, three days later he was at my high school,” Bailey said. “That really made an impression on me. Him being one of the top defensive coaches in the NFL coming from the Cowboys, where Demarcus Ware ends up with 20-something sacks, and he flies all the way here, and on the third day he comes to visit me? That made an impression on me that him and Georgia really were interested in me. I’m really looking forward to playing with him.”

Bailey is projected to play the outside linebacker position in new defensive coordinator Grantham’s scheme. He gets a three-star rating from Scout.com but is among the top 10 to 20 prospects in the state of Georgia. Hence the all-star list of offers.

Why now, he was asked. “Just because I passed the graduation test, I passed the ACT and I’m about to take the SAT,” he said. “I just wanted to get everything out of the way and focus on my senior year.”

Bailey said he actually made up his mind on Georgia in late February. But he said he wanted to make sure it was the right decision and continued to listen to the overtures from other schools. Finally he decided this week to pull the trigger with an announcement.

Bailey said he has become good friends with quarterback Christian LeMay and several other committed prospects and that they’re working together to build the Bulldogs’ 2011 class. He said LeMay called him right after pledging UGA on April 30 and Bailey plans to pass that philosophy forward.

“I believe the 2011 class will be the No. 1 class in the country. I really do,” he said.

UGA can only hope that Bailey is just first commitment of the weekend. Justin Scott-Wesley, a wide receiver/defensive back from Camilla’s Mitchell County High School is slated to make an announcement Saturday in Jefferson and also has the Bulldogs among his finalists.

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♦ Here’s SOME VIDEO I posted of Bailey’s announcement on the AJC College Sports Recruiting Facebook page this morning. Be sure to become a fan (click “Like”) of the AJC Recruiting Page for all kinds of photos, videos and other extras.

212 comments Add your comment

indianman

May 14th, 2010
6:41 pm

thank you sterling bailey for chossing ga

I Love UGA With All Of My Heart

May 14th, 2010
6:41 pm

I’m first. I want to thank everyone. I feel so blessed.

I Love UGA With All Of My Heart

May 14th, 2010
6:42 pm

I’m still first in my heart and always will be.

Ricky 4

May 14th, 2010
6:42 pm

WELCOME ABOARD STERLING! GO DAWGS!!

Glory Glory

May 14th, 2010
6:43 pm

Welcome!!!!!!

Branden Smith

May 14th, 2010
6:44 pm

TuckDAWG

May 14th, 2010
6:45 pm

Atta boy Sterling welcome to the BullDAWG nation GATA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

dawgfan

May 14th, 2010
6:45 pm

(((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((30-24))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))
((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((73-66)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

hahahahahahahahahahah WE RUN THIS STATE!!!!!!

wow it must suck for the nerds to watch every big time recruit in georgia go to georgia. we really do RUN THIS STATE!

GT

May 14th, 2010
6:45 pm

We are crying. We admit it. CPJ is ruining…… wait, we were already ruined….

I Love UGA With All Of My Heart

May 14th, 2010
6:45 pm

Sterling, you will love your time at UGA athletically and aademically. It is one of the most prestigious schools in the USA. I’m so proud of you and I’m also proud for your parents. They must be feeling like they’re on Cloud Nine. I hope you achieve everything you desire. Best of luck to you and may God bless you.

Glenn

May 14th, 2010
6:46 pm

Good Choice. Welcome!

West Virginia Dog

May 14th, 2010
6:47 pm

I’m loving these new recruits. I’m looking forward to September. Thank you Coach Richt

Bulldog59

May 14th, 2010
6:48 pm

Solid pick-up for Coach Grantham and the D.

GTDAWG

May 14th, 2010
6:49 pm

YEP another ESPN150 Watch list recruit.

Billy O

May 14th, 2010
6:49 pm

Welcome Sterling…..get prepared to GATA!!!!!!

GoldenDawg

May 14th, 2010
6:50 pm

Welcome aboard Sterling. We are happy to have you become a Dawg.

DAWG in Denver

May 14th, 2010
6:50 pm

This is one of the players that was mentioned as being influenced partially by Christian LeMay’s decision. I think Chip had an interview with Sterling’s father and he said LeMay and Sterling had been speaking pretty frequently. I hope the buzz is true and Christian is able to influence a few more really good players to come to UGA. Go Dawgs!

BC

May 14th, 2010
6:52 pm

WOW!,What a difference a new coordinator makes.

FL Dawg

May 14th, 2010
6:53 pm

Welcome aboard the UGA train. The recruiting for UGA is starting to roll down the tracks…like a freight train. Work hard at school and stay out of trouble. Good luck to you young man.

RomeDawg

May 14th, 2010
6:55 pm

Where is all the chatter of us losing ALL the big time recruits? Ain’t it great to be a Georgia Bulldog!

11Dawg

May 14th, 2010
6:56 pm

Georgia’s had good luck with players named Bailey.

Granted, they were all brothers…

ha

May 14th, 2010
6:57 pm

you will get what you pay for me
overrated

19th Hole Dawg

May 14th, 2010
6:59 pm

Welcome to the Dawg Nation!!

Solid decision. UGA will be a great place to become a young man, get a solid education, and become a better football player. Good luck!!

Yawn!

May 14th, 2010
6:59 pm

Weren’t AJ Green, Matt Stafford, Caleb King and all supposed to have a few national championship rings by now!?!? Do they even have a SEC East ring yet?

Big deal, another kid just chose to ride his ’scooter’ around downtown Athens in front of 90,000 Wal Mart employees. Congrats, I guess, if that’s what you want to do! Enjoy Shreveport in December.

sandyspringsjacket

May 14th, 2010
7:00 pm

a lot of comotion over a 3 star hahahah. Getting desparate boys?

Possible top ten recruiting class, finsh in the middle of the SEC, another Richt rerun!

Fear the BEE!

ArmyDawg

May 14th, 2010
7:00 pm

A three star recruit, give me a break. A guy is one of the most coveted players in America. Lemay, not a five star guy, “right.” Scout, you need to get a clue. David Pollace, Ben Jones, and other Dawgs were three stars, but they did alright. Welcome to the Dawg nation Sterling, you are gonna love CMR and TG. This class is gonna be special. HOOAH!!!

cantondawg

May 14th, 2010
7:01 pm

Welcome to the Bulldog nation Sterling. I’m very excited about the upcoming football and recruiting season. I think Coach Grantham , Coach Belin and Coach Lakatos will make a huge difference in the upcoming season. Go Dawgs.

Barney Fife

May 14th, 2010
7:02 pm

We’ll have a jail cell waiting for you! Don’t worry though, I never put my one bullet in the gun!

Class of 86

May 14th, 2010
7:04 pm

AWESOME! Welcome Sterling! Hope this is just the beginning of keeping all the great GA players in Georgia! GO DAWGS!

Chicago Dawg

May 14th, 2010
7:05 pm

Headlines: Bulldogs Add “Silver” to collection

Happy Days are Here Again.

May 14th, 2010
7:05 pm

Enter your comments here

Dagny

May 14th, 2010
7:05 pm

“Sterling, you will love your time at UGA athletically and aademically. It is one of the most prestigious schools in the USA.”

Where in the hell did you get that crock of manure from?

memphisdawg

May 14th, 2010
7:06 pm

Out of Drew, Tuitt, and Dickson, I hope we can at least land two. Then our linebacking core and DE should be pretty stout moving forward.

guruSlick

May 14th, 2010
7:06 pm

Outside linebacker? 6-5 230ish?
right…
OCs will attck that.

bbcsickdawg

May 14th, 2010
7:08 pm

say you play last year you ll do great. great to have you as a dawg. this guy can play and is going to be a great one.

Glory Glory

May 14th, 2010
7:10 pm

Funny!!!

These Tech Nerds are here bashing the young man….. Had he chosen Tech, they would think he was the 2nd coming.

We. Run. This. State.

Flagboy

May 14th, 2010
7:11 pm

I can’t believe all my Tech Com padres are so jealous of you puppies. It’s O.K. Sterling, I still like you…Pssst call me….Flagboy…..

Tuscaloosa Dawg

May 14th, 2010
7:13 pm

Sandyspringsjacket, scout.com ratings mean very little – don’t you know that? The point is that the kid has size, speed, and talent, and every school that knows about him wants him. By the way, Mark Ingram was rated three stars by scout.com. He’s not even the best RB on Alabama’s team, yet he won the Heisman last year. You techies amuse me, especially when you tout your academic superiority. What a joke in every way imaginable!

AP Recrootin' Poll Champs

May 14th, 2010
7:15 pm

1. Dawgs
2. DaWgs
3.dogS
4. Everbuddy elsE

Moops

May 14th, 2010
7:18 pm

guruSlick – He’s a junior in HS. He’s going to be alot bigger by the time he gets to UGA.

sandyspringsjacket – ah..there’s that tech inferiority complex coming out. You’re really not doing anything to help dispel image most people have of tech fans. Funny you mention Richt rerun’s, I think you’ve caught that one quite a few times. Like 8 out of 9 times. If I was you, I’d be changing the channel. Fear the fly swatter!

Welcome Home Sterling and forgive...

May 14th, 2010
7:22 pm

Those jealous fool’s roaming their nose’s were it dont belong…( Haters like…tech,fla,tenn,al,au etc ) They got nothing better to do on a friday night. (figures…they are losers) . IT’S GREAT TO BE A GEORGIA BULLDOG ANY TIME OF THE DAY !!!!!!!!!! GATA STERLING !!!!

guruSlick

May 14th, 2010
7:24 pm

he’s already DE size. Not sure
he has the speed to play LB in Athens

GR82BAG8R

May 14th, 2010
7:25 pm

Congratulations on another fine recruit. He seems like a fine young man with a good head on his shoulders. It looks like Georgia will end up with another top-10 class.

Maybe the changes on defense will help your teams live up to their recruiting potential. If, however, you fail to win the SEC East again, and again, and again, will you begin to wonder if Richt is the right coach to take you to the next level?

It seem BuLLDawg has enough statistics to think about.

The Grinch

May 14th, 2010
7:25 pm

Welcome to Bulldawg Nation, young man. Glad to have you aboard.

82Dawg

May 14th, 2010
7:26 pm

sandyspringsjacket….go find your own blog, if there is one

IT'S GREAT TO BE A GEORGIA BULLDOG ...

May 14th, 2010
7:26 pm

ANYTIME OF THE DAY !!!!!

memphisdawg

May 14th, 2010
7:28 pm

He has plenty of speed. If I am not mistaken he is running in 4X 100 relay state championship tommorrow.

4 ncs are better than 1

May 14th, 2010
7:28 pm

Hope you can make it to the NFL and don’t have to depend on that lack of education. Hope you don’t get hurt, or get lied to like Logan.

recruitnik

May 14th, 2010
7:29 pm

He is a heck of a prospect. Great pickup.. Welcome Sterling Bailey.

Flagboy

May 14th, 2010
7:29 pm

hee…hee….