THE TEN AT 10:
1. AJC Super 11 RB Isaiah Crowell, a 5-star prospect from Carver-Columbus, told Scout.com’s Chad Simmons that Georgia and Alabama are even after his visit to Athens this past weekend. The Crimson Tide held a slight edge previously. He also said he plans to visit on Dec. 11, which is the night of the Bulldogs’ Senior Gala event. He hasn’t decided if that will be an official visit or not, but the timing is certainly interesting either way. I’m supposed to talk to Crowell later this week so I’ll provide a full update once I do. In the meantime, here’s a link to Chad’s story.
2. Speaking of 5-star prospects, AJC Super 11 DE Ray Drew has been a popular man early in the contact period, which began Sunday. He told me Monday he hosted coaches from Clemson and Florida. Today he is scheduled to meet with Georgia and LSU representatives. Interestingly, Drew put out a notice that he would not accept any coaching visits during school hours. How’s that for unusual? So everything is being done before or after school or in his home. . . . Meanwhile, Drew scored 19 points in the Thomas County Central basketball game against Valdosta that kept him from making any visits last weekend. However, the Yellow Jackets lost.
3. As you might’ve seen from my Tweets on Twitter.com, some new offers from UGA went out to a few prospects following the Tech-Georgia game, which was attended by more than 100 recruits. Among them, were offers for class of 2012 prospects Kenyan Drake, a running back from Hillgrove High in Powder Springs, and Greyson Lambert, a quarterback from Wayne County down in Jesup. I interviewed both players Monday and will be posting updates later. In a nutshell, both players loved their visits and were thrilled about getting offers from Georgia. Lambert also has offers from Alabama and Clemson. Drake had been offered only by the Bulldogs and Georgia Tech when I talked to him Monday afternoon but landed an offer from Tennessee last night, according to Scout.com.
Meanwhile, on his weekly radio show Monday night, Georgia coach Mark Richt reiterated that he has no interest in the head coaching opening at Miami, his alma mater, and re-emphasized his “Dream Team” theme for the Bulldogs’ 2011 recruiting class. “We’re trying to recruit guys right now that can make an impact so when we play in that Georgia Dome next year and open against Boise State, we can introduce those kids to the college football world and make a difference at the University of Georgia,” Richt said. See Tim Tucker’s full report over on the UGA Blog.
4. Over at Georgia Tech, four-star DT Darian Cooper of DeMatha, Md., received an in-home visit from defensive coordinator Al Groh on Monday, according to JacketsOnline.com. Cooper, who has around 20 major-college offers, has a long-standing relationship with Groh since he was head coach at Virginia. “Coach Groh talked a little football with me, but he mainly answered all my mom’s questions about Georgia Tech and the academics and everything related to the school,” he told publisher Kelly Quinlan. “Tech has been one of my top schools since the first time I met Coach Groh so I already know how I feel about them. But it was good for him to talk to my mom about it.”
5. Quinlan reports that Starr’s Mill RB/LB Zach Laskey may be the next in-state prospect to land an offer from Jackets. Laskey has more than 1,500 yards rushing for undefeated Panthers (13-0), who take on undefeated Tucker in the Class AAAA semifinals on Friday. . . . Another in-state player on Georgia Tech’s radar is Johnson County wide receiver Zach Walker, whose prolific career came to an end in the second round of the Class A playoffs. Georgia High School Football Daily reports that Walker got an offer from Tulane last week and has offers from Western Kentucky, Georgia Southern, Appalachian State, Georgia State and Illinois State. The Yellow Jackets are actively recruiting him but have not offered. Walker, who is not related to Johnson County native Herschel Walker, had 69 catches for 1,187 yards and 18 touchdowns this season.
6. Miami had only seven commitments when Randy Shannon was fired as head coach after Saturday’s loss to South Florida. But a few of those guys showed in interest in our local teams before choosing the Hurricanes. Four-star DE Anthony Chickillo of Tampa and 3-star WR Phillip Dorsett of Fort Lauderdale were seriously considering Georgia at one time. LB Nick Menocal of Miami was being recruited by Georgia Tech but did not have an offer. Who knows, right? . . . In the meantime, rumors that 5-star QB commit Teddy Bridgewater — who gave the Bulldogs a long, hard look — was “looking around” appear unfounded. He’s “solid,” according to this report by the Orlando Sentinel’s Chris Hays.
7. Speaking of the Hurricanes, one of the bright spots in an otherwise dismal day in Miami was the play of 2009 AJC Super 11 running back Storm Johnson. Coming into the game in the fourth quarter as Miami’s No. 4 tailback, the true freshman from Loganville on his first carry busted through the middle and rambled 71 yards for a touchdown, the Miami Herald reported. It was the longest from scrimmage this season for “The U.” Johnson managed only four more yards on four more carries to finish 5-75. But before Saturday, he had carried the ball only twice for 24 yards.
9. The final installment of the “Channel 2 Sports Zone Friday Game of the Week” has been set. We’re televising the Brookwood-Collins Hill Game Friday night at 7:30 on Comcast channel 248 and Charter 126. As always, the game will be replayed later that night at 1 a.m. on WSB Channel 2. As always, Channel 2 Sports Director Zach Klein will handle play-by-play and I’ll be providing the color commentary. This should be an awesome matchup pitting a pair of high-octane offenses. We covered Brookwood’s opening-round playoff game against Alpharetta and I was very impressed with several of the Broncos’ prospects in that game, including LB Cameron Lynch (Syracuse), WR/DB Andre Sims (Michigan State) and RB Nick Tompkins (uncommitted).
This time I’m really looking forward to getting a first-hand look at Collins Hill QB Taylor Heinicke. All he has done is pass for 3,906 yards and 43 touchdowns. As you can see, he’s bearing down on Hutson Mason’s state passing record of 4,560 yards set last year (hey, 655 yards is not out of the question considering he threw for 388 yards and 3 TDs in a win over Lowndes last week). He’s also trying to top Mason’s television career. He, too, is a competitor on the reality series “The Rise,” which pits eight “under-the-radar” quarterbacks in a competition for a spot in the U.S. Army All-American game. The series is being shown on MTV2 this year.
10. THIS & THAT: AJC Super 11 TE Jay Rome plans to take his official visit to UGA the weekend of Dec. 11th, according to several Internet reports. That’s when the Bulldogs host their annual Senior Gala and a number of top recruits are expected to be on hand. . . . Johnson County’s quarterback, D.J. Rozier, has committed to Southeast Louisiana. Rozier threw for 1,819 yards and 31 touchdowns and rushed for 1,235 and 18 touchdowns, GHSF Daily reports. . . . Whitewater RB Josh Clemons is scheduled for an in-home with Maryland coaches on Thursday, per Scout.com. . . . Sandy Creek RB Mike Hilton “loved” his visit to Tennessee this past weekend, 247Sports’ Rusty Mansell reports. Hilton is a terrific RB/DB I saw against Fayette County earlier this year. . . . Georgia State can only sign about eight players or so in this year’s class. But two prospects the Panthers have their eyes on are Martin Luther King OL Dontre Stephens and Southwest Dekalb QB Andre Wilson. . . .
DE Jadeveon Clowney, the consensus No. 1 recruit in America, apparently is now seriously considering FSU. According the 247Sports, he has set up an official visit with the Seminoles. It was thought to be a South Carolina-Alabama-Clemson battle for the Spartanburg native. . . . Three-star QB/S Shamier Jeffery of St. Matthews, S.C. has decided to follow his older brother Alshon Jeffrey to South Carolina, according to PalmettoSports.com. Jeffrey is expected to play defensive back in college. Tech was among his many offers. . . .
Four-star DL Jeoffrey Pagan of Asheville, N.C., has de-committed from Florida, according to numerous reports. He’s holding offers from both Georgia and Tech. . . . Former Alabama signee Alfy Hill’s NCAA Clearinghouse complications took him from being an enrolled student-athlete with the Crimson Tide to East Carolina. Now he has enrolled at Itawamba (Miss.) Community College with the apparent intentions of eventually ending up back at Bama.