THE TEN AT 10:
1. AJC Super 11 linebacker James Vaughters said he would have to reconsider his options if Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh leaves for another job and one of those options would be Georgia Tech.
Vaughters, a 6-3, 230-pound outside linebacker from Tucker, has been committed to the Cardinal since June. He has remained steadfastly pledged to the program despite rampant rumors attaching Harbaugh’s name to potential head coaching positions in the NFL and at other colleges. But Vaughters is starting to waver ever so slightly as we head into the New Year.
“I’ve talked to a lot of the other commits,” Vaughters said. “Basically, the way we’re looking at it is if he stays we’re good. But a lot of us still like [Stanford] minus Coach Harbaugh, too. We all like the school and they’ve put together a good class. So I’m just not sure right now. It’s hard to ignore that he’s won more games there than any other coach.”
The Cardinal arrived in Miami Wednesday to play Virginia Tech in the Orange Bowl. Harbaugh was peppered by media with questions about his interest in several job openings but declined to comment, according to the San Jose Mercury News. “I only talk about the job I have now,” Harbaugh said.
“I’ve heard a lot of stuff,” Vaughters said. “I’ve heard he’s going to Michigan, I’ve heard he’s going to the NFL. A lot of people are saying a lot of different things. But you don’t know how much there is to it.
Vaughters said Georgia Tech coaches have remained in contact throughout the fall and want to have an in-home visit with him. To this point he said he has not met with them in person but he said he is considering it. Vaughters said he would also have to consider Ohio State, which finished second to Stanford at the time of his commitment, Florida and “maybe Miami” if he decided to re-open his recruitment.
2. Another elite recruited committed elsewhere remains on Georgia Tech’s radar. Monroe Area defensive end Stephon Tuitt, a four-star prospect who committed to Notre Dame in September, took a visit to Auburn earlier this month and is considering an official visit to The Flats in January, according to IrishSportsDaily.com.
“I’m still committed to Notre Dame, but I am looking around,” Tuitt told ISD. “. . . Another school would have to knock me off my feet to get me to change my mind. If they did that I have a feeling I’d move them to the top. I just have to make sure about my decision, because signing day is right around the corner.”
3. Despite landing its 17th commitment recently — linebacker Tyler Marcordes of Normal, Ill. — it appears Georgia Tech’s has plenty of room for some of these major recruits. A total of 10 players have left the program for reasons other than graduation or exhaustion of eligibility in 2010, according to JacketsOnline.com. The good news is that leaves them with just 62 returning letterman for next season.That means they could sign as many as 23 players in the current class. One of their current commitments, OL Trey Braun of Tallahassee, Fla., will enroll next month.
4. Speaking of elite recruits, several of the top ones in Georgia are expected to make their college decisions in early January. AJC Super 11 DB Damian Swann of Grady, AJC Super 11 DE Xzavier Dickson of Griffin, RB Quan Bray of Troup and WR Malcolm Mitchell of Valdosta at or shortly after national all-star games over the next week or so, according to various Internet reports. Bray, Dickson and Mitchell are among 10 Georgians playing in the Under Armour All-America Game next week in Florida. Swann is playing in the U.S. Army All-America game on Jan. 8 in San Antonio.
5. Taylor Heinicke recently committed to Old Dominion, but he may soon find himself with even more offers after his performance in the GACA North-South All-Star Classic on Wednesday in Columbus. The Collins Hill quarterback earned MVP honors while leading the North to a 22-0 victory. Heineke completed 22-of-26 passes for 254 yards and three touchdowns. Heineke (6-1, 185) established a Gwinnett County record when he passed for more than 4,194 yards and 45 touchdowns this past season.
Scoring off his aerials were Carrollton’s Broderick Snoddy, a Georgia Tech commitment, North Gwinnett’s C.J. Uzomah, an Auburn commitment, and South Gwinnett’s Kent Rollins, a quarterback who played receiver in the game and hauled in a 64-yard pass.
6. Kitray Solomon, an all-state defensive end from Baldwin, was named South’s MVP. He had two sacks. . . . M.L. King’s DeMarco Robinson, a Kentucky commitment, led all receivers with 83 yards on five catches. Valdosta tight end Jay Rome had 6 for 34 and teammate Malcolm Mitchell added four for 25. . . . There’s a full report in the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer.
7. I haven’t yet had a chance to catch up with Whitewater running back Josh Clemons, but the three-star prospect committed to Kentucky on Christmas, according to CatsPause.com. Clemons (5-11, 200), the AJC’s Class AAAA Offensive Player of the Year, had over 3,000 career yards rushing. He chose the Wildcats over Maryland, Mississippi State and Northwestern.
8. One of the reasons Clemons cited for choosing Kentucky is his relationship with new assistant coach Steve Pardue. Pardue, the longtime head coach at LaGrange High, joined the Wildcats’ staff earlier this month. While under Pardue’s tutelage, LaGrange was known as a Kentucky recruiting pipeline. Six former Grangers are currently on the Kentucky roster. Other notables Pardue sent UK’s way include All-SEC linebackers Wesley Woodyard and Braxton Kelley. The question now is if LaGrange will continue to be a UK pipeline without Pardue there to open the valve.
9. Georgia State currently has two public commitments and one signee. CB D’Mario Gunn of Locust Grove signed a letter-of-intent on Dec. 15 and will transfer from Georgia Military College in January. The Panthers also have commitments from WR Nick Henderson of Roswell and DE Roderick Thompson of Mays.
10. THIS & THAT: Bailey, the UGA football commitment, apparently is pretty good at basketball, too. The 6-5, 250-pound had 11 points and 17 rebounds in East Hall’s victorious championship game in the Lanierland tournament last week. . . . Nick Waisome pulled a switcheroo over the holidays, de-committing from Florida and committing to Florida State, according to the Orlando Sentinel. At one time he was considering Georgia. . . . Another postseason high school all-star game to keep your eye on is the inaugural AT&T Rising Seniors Bowl. The game for current juniors will be played Jan. 8 at Hallford Stadium in Clarkston. . . . LB Kent Turene of Lauderdale Lakes, Fla., is slated to visit UGA on Jan. 21, according to Dawgs247.com. The website also reports that Georgia leads for LB Ramik Wilson of Tampa.