Archive for March, 2011

Brandon Greene ends recruiting early with commitment to Alabama

Cedar Grove's Brandon "Cinco Ocho" Greene was impressive in RisingSenior.com's Georgia Junior Bowl earlier this year. (Photo by Rusty Mansell of 247Sports.com)

Cedar Grove's Brandon "Cinco Ocho" Greene was impressive in RisingSenior.com's Georgia Junior Bowl earlier this year. (Photo by Rusty Mansell of 247Sports.com)

College football prospects have all sorts of different attitudes toward recruiting. Brandon Greene is one of those who pretty much knew what he wanted and wasn’t all that interested in the courtship part of the recruiting game.

Well, now he’s got what he wanted.

The 6-foot-6, 295-pound offensive tackle from Cedar Grove committed to Alabama over the weekend. He did it without a lot of pomp and circumstance and without a whole bunch of other offers. Before he committed to the Crimson Tide while on an unofficial visit this past Saturday, Greene’s other scholarship opportunities were from Central Florida, Louisville, Ole Miss.

But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t project as a great college football player. On the contrary. For all practical purposes, his recruitment was just taking off.

“He has gotten all kinds of interest from …

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ACC, SEC teams line up for Jenkins County package of James DeLoach-Jonathan Taylor

Jenkins County's James DeLoach (L) and Jonathan Taylor at Georgia Tech, where they've spent a lot of time together. (Photo by Chuck Conley reprinted with permission)

Jenkins County's James DeLoach (L) and Jonathan Taylor at Georgia Tech, where they've spent a lot of time together. (Photo by Chuck Conley reprinted with permission)

Valdosta’s Malcolm Mitchell and Jay Rome, who both signed with Georgia last month, went down as one of the best “package deals” of the last recruiting period. Well, there’s another good two-for-one opportunity this year for some lucky team.

James DeLoach and Jonathan Taylor of Jenkins County would be a great get for any school individually. But the defensive stalwarts are best buddies and are shopping themselves as a pair.

“Everybody that has been recruiting us pretty much already knows that we want to play at the same school,” said Taylor, a 6-foot-4, 315-pound defensive tackle. “They know we’re both good players and they’d like to have both of us.”

Asked what percentage he would put on them playing together in college, Deloach laughed and said, “99.9 percent.”

The teams recruiting them don’t seem to have a …

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Former Falcon Chuck Smith holds ‘bizarre’ news conference to explain Tennessee departure

Chuck Smith’s sudden departure from Tennessee was already curious. But after the former Volunteer star and NFL defensive end held a press conference on Friday to “explain” the circumstances surrounding his dismissal as defensive line coach, I think it’s safe to call it bizarre.

Smith

Smith

During one 25-minute session, Smith said he was not fired but was not allowed to stay, said he was a “Vol for life” but would consider coaching at another SEC school, compared himself to former UT head coach Lane Kiffin, apologized to recruits for “lying” and saying he’d be there to coach them, and denied rumors he had come to blows with defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox.

Smith did manage to thank head coach Derek Dooley and everybody at UT except for Wilcox and the rest of the Vols’ defensive staff. So clearly things aren’t hunky-dory there.

“I put my heart and soul into a job, and I want to let you guys know why I left. The decision to leave the University of Tennessee wasn’t my decision,” …

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Ten@10: Major recruiting scandals threaten college football

THE TEN AT 10:

1. Put the words “major” and “recruiting” and “violations” together in any sentence and it can send chills down the spines of athletic directors and fans everywhere. Throw them out in the context sports radio personality Colin Cowherd did this week and you could produce full-blown panic.

Cowherd, on his nationally-syndicated ESPN radio program, cryptically revealed on Tuesday that he has information that a “top 10-12″ college football program is about to be “outed” by “major publication” for a “major recruiting violations.” He would not identify the program, said the information was revealed to him in a text message from an apparently credible source and said the staff at ESPN and ESPN.com is attempting to verify the infomation. Before you jump to any conclusions, Cowherd said that it was NOT Auburn.

In case you missed it, here’s what Cowherd said on his program, according to a transcript provided by NBC Sports’ collegefootball.com:

“I received an interesting …

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Woodward Academy DL Jordan Watkins approaching 30 offers with UGA invite

The combination of elite athletic ability and high academics has brought Woodward Academy defensive lineman Jordan Watkins nearly 30 scholarship offers, the latest from UGA. (Photo by Rusty Mansell/247Sports.com)

The combination of elite athleticism and high academics has brought Woodward Academy defensive lineman Jordan Watkins nearly 30 scholarship offers, the latest from UGA. (Photo by Rusty Mansell/247Sports.com)

The first scholarship offers for Jordan Watkins began rolling in more than a year ago when he was still a sophomore at Woodward Academy. But one he’s always hoped for didn’t come until this week.

The University of Georgia offered Watkins a scholarship on Tuesday via an avalanche of letters in his mailbox from multiple coaches. The Bulldogs’ invitation was No. 28 of what is now 29 opportunities (Florida followed suit Tuesday night).

But if Watkins is annoyed about having to wait on UGA, he isn’t showing it.

“I don’t question them at all,” Watkins said of fielding 27 offers before Georgia’s finally came. “I’m sure they’re trying to make sure they offer the right person nowadays. When I say that, I mean with a great academic and athletic background. So I had no problem …

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Ten@10: S.C. commit Lorenzo Mauldin strongly considering Louisville offer

THE TEN AT 10:

1. Lorenzo Mauldin is still not sure what he’s going to do, but he’s starting to feel better about his options. The Maynard Jackson High defensive end and longtime South Carolina commitment, who was stuck without a scholarship after the Gamecocks oversigned on national signing day, is now heavily considering an offer from Louisville.

Mauldin

Mauldin

Cardinals’ second-year coach Charlie Strong has offered to bring in the 6-foot-4, 240-pound defensive end as a non-qualifer if he continues to come up short on his test scores, according to Mauldin. That means Mauldin would have to pay his own way the first year but would have three years of eligibility remaining and a qualify for a fourth if he’s on track to graduate.

“That’s a pretty good option for me,” Mauldin said Monday. “I believe it’s better than prep school. I’ll already be there with the team and I could be playing football the next fall.”

Louisville would, of course, prefer to take Mauldin as an out-right …

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