St. Pius linebacker T.J. Holloman commits to South Carolina (UPDATED)

St. Pius linebacker T.J. Holloman committed to South Carolina on Sunday night. On Monday, he said his next order of business was recruiting his high school teammate for the Gamecocks — cornerback Geno Smith, who is a candidate to be Georgia’s No. 1 college football prospect for next year.

“I want to help South Carolina in recruiting by having the best 2012 class, starting by working on my teammate Geno,” Holloman said.

Holloman gave three reasons for picking the Gamecocks: “No. 1, Coach Spurrier stresses the importance of graduation and, as an athlete, it is important for me to excel in the classroom first. I believe in order to do well on the field, it starts in the classroom. No. 2, South Carolina has a winning record for the past two years and made it to the SEC Championship, showing the program is a great competitor in the best conference in the country. No. 3, when I attended the Spring Game I observed the number of fans there. I realized football is important to the fans in South Carolina and I am really big on fan support.”

The 6-foot-3, 220-pounder is being recruited by the Gamecocks at linebacker. Holloman also had scholarship offers from Louisville, Illinois and North Carolina State and was being evaluated by North Carolina and Vanderbilt, among others. He recently attended one of the Junior Days at Georgia, and had some early interest from Georgia Tech.

“He committed early because he felt good about South Carolina — the coaches, the school and I think he was ready to get this part of the process behind him,” St. Pius coach Paul Standard said. “I think it felt right for him to do it now.”

Holloman plays in the shadows of Smith. However, Holloman may be close in athleticism with Smith — and even better with his versatility. Holloman is the backup QB at the Atlanta private school and was called into action against No. 7-ranked North Hall last season. Holloman looked like a seasoned veteran, rushing 16 times for 251 yards and three touchdowns in three quarters of play in the 49-8 win.

He will be a three-year starter at St. Pius, playing both sides of the ball last season. Standard thinks he can play multiple positions at South Carolina.

“Wherever you put T.J. on the field, he makes things happen,” Standard said.

Holloman showed his toughness as a sophomore, injuring his shin in a scrimmage and returning a few minutes later to play. He also started the next week in the season opener. However, in the next few days, he realized what he thought was a bruised shin might be something more serious. He got it checked out by doctors and was diagnosed with a fracture. He sat out for six games, returning in time for the playoff run by St. Pius.

Analysis: Holloman is one of the better high school football players in the Atlanta area. He seems to always be around the football and in position to make the big play. He didn’t have as many scholarship offers (at least not yet) because many colleges weren’t sure where exactly he projects to play at the next level. They wanted to see him up close and personal at summer camps, and perhaps a few games into his senior year.  Nice pickup by SC.

– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog

81 comments Add your comment

freedyg

April 11th, 2011
3:44 am

Johnny Too Good

April 11th, 2011
7:25 am

He plays the pass well, almost like a safety

http://www.youtube.com/thatsjohnanderson

Bama Fan#2

April 11th, 2011
7:39 am

Hey guys did you hear who Geno Smith favorite team is? Guess the CRIMSON TIDE!!! RTR

Well

April 11th, 2011
7:49 am

Bama Fan, it was IC’s at this time last year as well.

NHGamecock

April 11th, 2011
7:54 am

Welcome Holloman, the gamecock family welcome you aboard…….

AUtiger

April 11th, 2011
8:06 am

By the way South Carolina fans, the fact that you unveiled a big sign for a division championship is really really lame. I don’t think anybody else in the SEC save mabe Vandy and the two Mississippi schools would have considered that.

G'Vegas Dawg

April 11th, 2011
8:17 am

Begin comments on Richt letting him get out of state….

hey AU

April 11th, 2011
8:28 am

speaking of stadiums, is it true that the NCAA is putting a new compliance office at Jordan Hare?

SECIsFootball

April 11th, 2011
8:54 am

AUtiger….You are incorrect my friend. We will never know if Vandy would do it and I can say that Miss State doesnt have one as they made a trip to Atlanta in, I wanna say, 1998. However, Ole Miss, who has never been to Atlanta has a banner up in their stadium that say SEC Western Division Co-Champions. Not sure what year but they split with LSU and LSU won the head to head to they went to Atlanta. Just thought I would throw some facts out there.

EJ

April 11th, 2011
9:33 am

Direct from Geno’s mouth

“I’ve heard that some people think that I might do like [Malcolm] Mitchell and [Isaiah] Crowell and wait to the last minute to pick Georgia,” Smith says. “I think those two guys were probably going to Georgia all along. But that’s not me. I’m not going to play it out like that. I won’t be influenced by in-state pressure. I am going to make the best decision for me. If you show people that they can’t influence your decision, they won’t try. Alabama is my strong leader.”

Blackoutanyone?

April 11th, 2011
9:36 am

AUtiger… I don’t think anyone at USC gives a rip what a fan of the Aubarn Cheetahs thinks. Congrats to this young man.

It Ain't Rocket Science

April 11th, 2011
9:39 am

I couldn’t find this kid listed in any of the recruiting services list, even in the top 300. UGA has six letters out for OLB and all of them seem to be a lot bigger than he is. Possibly, the DC doesn’t think that UGA needs to recruit another athlete since they have already sent letters to 6 OLB,s, 6 SE’s, 6 DE’s and 2 DT’s. Hopefully UGA will get some of thye players they want out of the ones they are interested in.

Nick F.

April 11th, 2011
9:40 am

dawgster

April 11th, 2011
9:47 am

I’m not sure what the Smith kid is really saying, but hey if he wants to go to Bama, and feels that strong, then go ahead and commit…Why waste the time of other coaches and programs and dangle a carrot out there…I say this not only for this young man, but too many of them…if they truly know where they are going then make a committment and be many enough to stick with it…These recruiting games are becoming absurd…It will probably always be this way, especially with players that the media and others hype up, but I don’t really enjoy the games they play…The coaches for all these programs work hard and it bothers me that alot of them get jerked around, but I know there are some coaches that probably do the same….the whole process in my opinion needs to be revamped….anyway its a long ways till NSD….go dawgs

Blackoutanyone?

April 11th, 2011
9:47 am

EJ… just curious.. where did you get that quote? Love to have him at Bama but I’ll be surprised if he doesn’t end up at UGA.

GoldTimer

April 11th, 2011
9:52 am

Hey Chip, Will USC-(l)east actually have a scholly for him when signing day comes around or will he be left sitting on the sidelines until the following January?

Blackoutanyone?

April 11th, 2011
10:08 am

dawgster… why? and who’s to say he isn’t a silent commit? I think it’s easy to say what we would or wouldn’t do if we were in that position. (Personally I tried to commit to Alabama when I met coach Saban. My 6+ second 40 time and 170lb bech press didn’t impress.. not even a grayshirt offer) Do you know what a typical visit is like for a blue chipper to one of these bigtime programs? Free travel… free food… free football games… lots of college girls. Hard to turn that down at 17. We the fans have made recruiting the circus it has become. I’m ok with it because it feels a void between football season and A-day.

cantondawg

April 11th, 2011
10:21 am

Hey AJC,

Could you please institute a rule stating that you must have at least a 50 IQ in order to post on this board. This rule would eliminate at least 99% of the irritating, annoying BAMA fans who constantly get on our nerves.

schmeckdawg

April 11th, 2011
10:22 am

Looks like the DAWGS are doing a bang up job of recruiting. How many top level guys have we “lost” already to other programs? I wonder if CMR and his staff know that their jobs are on the line! Good grief!!!!!!!!!!!

Tdawg

April 11th, 2011
10:27 am

Right there GoldTimer. The kid might want to go ahead and get that in writing. The snake, I mean head coach might resind the offer on the last day.

dawgster

April 11th, 2011
10:29 am

@Blackoutanyone?…don’t have a problem with the kids enjoying themselves…I can only speak for myself and possibly my son if he gets that opportunity….My point is if the kids are going to make public statements and are strongly leaning or even commit to a school, then stick to the commitment…It seems many have no clue what the word “commitment means..I understand its college football, but its more about how you conduct yourself in the future…Maybe I’m being a little tough on these guys, but when they make statements to the media and let it be known that this is where they are going, then it not only would keep other coaches, perhaps!, from continuing to chase them, but would allow the coaches to concentrate on the kids that may really want to go to a particular school, but because the coaches are waiting for one kid to decide, it may mean another young man doesn’t get an offer….Look, all I’m saying is why play the games, it plays out as fun in the media, but in my opinion, it puts way too much emphasis on hey “look at me”…I’m getting all these offers, How many can I get, but I know where I’m going, but keep the offers rolling..And to answer your question regarding what a visit ot a Div 1 program is like…the answer is yes…I do understand why the 17 or 18 year old would want that….What I don’t like is when these kids commit, unless something really changes, then stick with it…I know most Coaches that accept a commitment after an offer will and should keep that as a valid offer to the young man, but at times it seems like it is a one way street…but it is the way recruitnig goes these days, whether I like it or not…go dawgs…

Blackoutanyone?

April 11th, 2011
10:32 am

cantondawg… before that rule is instituted… ROLL TIDE!!

Blackoutanyone?

April 11th, 2011
10:50 am

dawgster… I agree with everything you posted. Though some of these kids don’t have the same parental support and these adult “reporters” do alot of baiting with the questions they ask. Just looking to get the quotes that will sell subscriptions to rivals, scout. I never understood why Julio Jones waited until signing day in 2008 to pick Alabama. Commit and start recruiting a 5* QB that will throw the ball to you. I would think that would help with team and individual goals. I know sometimes the networks that show these High School Allstar games ask kids to hold off and commit on television during the game. I would imagine rivals, scout.. 247sports do the same.

Johnny Too Good

April 11th, 2011
10:52 am

He mentioned how competitive Carolina was the last two years…. will they be able to repeat that success without Garcia and his off the field issues?
personally, i have UGA and FLA as favorites in the east

http://www.youtube.com/thatsjohnanderson

dawgster

April 11th, 2011
10:55 am

@blackoutanyone?…dont thin they will institute that rule…if they did it would rule out some dawg fans also…Heck I even thought about writing something annoying once also…go dawgs

SCAR Fan

April 11th, 2011
11:00 am

Welcome TJ! We are glad to have you aboard and glad that you jumped on board early! Good luck with Geno as well. We would certainly be glad to have him join you! Go Gamecocks!

dawgster

April 11th, 2011
11:00 am

ok…don’t know what “don’t thin” means….sorry misspell…

@blackoutanyone?…you are correct these recruiting services and media networks all play a part in this…It creates a lot of drama and I guess excitement also…maybe I’m just old school…go dawgs

GoldenDawg

April 11th, 2011
11:04 am

Didn’t these recruits see how South Carolina treated their recruits last year? Why would anybody want to put themselves in that position?

schmeckdawg

April 11th, 2011
11:04 am

Johnny Too Good

April 11th, 2011
10:52 am
He mentioned how competitive Carolina was the last two years…. will they be able to repeat that success without Garcia and his off the field issues?
personally, i have UGA and FLA as favorites in the east

Are his off the field issues any different than being on the field and playing hungover in the “Peach Bowl!!!!” This clown has been suspended what 5 times, but, Spurrier still keeps him around. Yeah, all of you haters keep ragging on CMR and how he disciplines his players!

erdrnick

April 11th, 2011
11:12 am

Hey Canton Dawg–do you know why Forest Gump decided to go to Alabama instead of Georgia? ACADEMICS !! really,to say smething about Alabama scholastics,for a Georgia fan,is like the pot calling the kettle black.

G'Vegas Dawg

April 11th, 2011
11:12 am

Schmeckdawg gets the prize!!

Looks like the DAWGS are doing a bang up job of recruiting. How many top level guys have we “lost” already to other programs? I wonder if CMR and his staff know that their jobs are on the line! Good grief!!!!!!!!!!!

schmeckdawg

April 11th, 2011
11:36 am

Why thank you G’Vegas Dawg! I mean I am hoping that there is a reason to our staffs madness; however, as of this post, I am not getting it. If any DAWG fan out there would like to enlighten me and make me feel better, I am all ears or actually eyes since I wil be reading this!

Keep Hunkerin’!!!!!!!

schmeckdawg

April 11th, 2011
11:37 am

Sorry…will!

Listen up

April 11th, 2011
11:39 am

Geno seems like a bright kid but I don’t understand the fascination with Bama. They have had a few good years but they could have easily lost a couple of more games the last two years. I’m not saying Bama isn’t a good program. Geno should already know what school he wants to attend. The majority of kids have a team that they truly like better than others. The media has given Recruits the idea that Nick Saban will make you a NFL player. The SEC is the top conference and if you can play the scouts will notice you at any of the schools.

TRUTH-TELLIN' DAWG

April 11th, 2011
11:48 am

i hope for this young man’s sale he got this offer written in Spurrier’s blood b/c their offers OBVIIOUSLY don’t last if someone better comes along…

RRTDawgs

April 11th, 2011
11:52 am

Right now UGA is in very good shape with Geno Smith we lead for Smith i don’t think SC is huge threat they are not going to huge class after signing 31 recruits .

Lattimore4Heisman

April 11th, 2011
11:54 am

Welcome aboard TJ!

Lattimore4Heisman

April 11th, 2011
11:55 am

Right now Bama leads for Geno Smith….but things can change. Some of these recruits considering UGA better open there eyes because UGA is on the decline.

G'Vegas Dawg

April 11th, 2011
12:00 pm

It is not feasable that UGA gets every “top tier” recruit in the state of Ga. It would be nice, but, not feasable. There are times that I wonder why UGA doesn’t recruit some players, but, not in this case. I hate talking bad about high school kids so I’ll try to be as nice as possible. At this point in the recruiting process UGA doesn’t need an “OK” talent. Holloman isn’t even ranked in the state of Ga, much less nationally. Top tier programs recruit top tier talent. I see a lot of the same comments everytime AJC runs a story about a player choosing an out of state school. Some players in Ga. just aren’t good enough to play at UGA. Some players in Ga have ties to other states and aren’t interested in UGA. Other top players may feel that playing time elsewhere as a freshman is more possible at another school. Other players that have talent may be too much of a headache (see yesterday’s story regarding Lame Kiffin). And yes, UGA does miss out on studs from this state (see Iron brothers from Dacula). But, nobody in Athens has a crystal ball and can see the future and what a kid may turn out like. My point is that there are only so many spots that need help and UGA may be full at one spot or another and may just miss out on those studs.

RRTDawgs

April 11th, 2011
12:02 pm

Bama does not lead for lead for Smith SC fans don’t get your hopes up because you got his team mate most of the info i have been hearing is that UGA leads for Smith .

little dawg

April 11th, 2011
12:10 pm

if he goes to ala.he will sit on the bench,they need him for the scout team.

1eyedJack

April 11th, 2011
12:12 pm

300+ D1 prospects in Georgia.

UGA will get 15 or so of the top 50 in Georgia. This kid probably wouldn’t make that cut.

McDawg

April 11th, 2011
12:15 pm

Dear Lattimore-

decline is a realtive term when speaking of USC

GT hulk

April 11th, 2011
12:22 pm

GT would not offer unless Wofford or Ga. Southern offered.

lol@Auburn

April 11th, 2011
12:28 pm

I find it hilarious that Auburn and Georgia fans are talking about how USC handles their recruits. The thing is, USC doesn’t open up an extra 10 scholarships per year because everyone on their team gets arrested. Oh, Auburn fans, you just got dumped on. Cam Newton took his $ and national championship and is gone. Now you’re about to lose that NC. Idiots.
And I already feel bad for UGA fans. Lattimore for 250 yds and 3 TDs against the pooches.

Blackoutanyone?

April 11th, 2011
12:36 pm

Listenup… I would advise you to watch the NFL draft in a few weeks. That should clear up some of your questions regarding player development at Alabama. Additionally here is former NFL and Ohio State great Cris Carter who’s son just commited to the Tide:

“I mean what they do for the athlete,” Cris Carter said. “There’s no team that we’ve talked to or university that as an organization (does what Alabama does). What they’re trying to do to analyze the kids. As Duron has had academic problems, why did he have academic problems? What’s his IQ? What’s his learning style? Why can’t he learn in the previous situations? They really believe every kid has a lot of potential, and they want to put him and teach him in a way that fits him. No one’s ever said that before. Duron has a situation that causes his body to produce dopamine that it makes it hard for him to concentrate in school. It’s almost like he’s on a little drug. Marcell Dareus has the same thing. They all know these things about Duron, and they have a Ph.D. nutrionist on staff. There’s a sound machine that he has to sleep with. They have all of this equipment. That’s what I mean by overwhelmed. I believe Duron, his issues as far as attitude are going to be resolved. That’s what they’re doing. That’s the service and opportunity they’re providing for every athlete at the university.”

Other places play football….at Alabama we live it!

USC Gamecock

April 11th, 2011
12:37 pm

USC is glad to have you and if at all possible bring that Geno kid along with you….both of you will be SEC Champions if you go to USC.

SECIsFootball

April 11th, 2011
12:40 pm

RRTdawg….You sir are incorrect about Smith. Right now BAMA is his leader and like always that can change. I think if Richt is still at UGA next year, he signs with UGA. If Richt doesnt win 10 games this year, he will be gone and most UGA fans I know will admit that. If that is the case, he will sign with BAMA. If Richt is fired, the only way Smith would go to UGA is if Kirby Smart was hired as the HC. He may be able to convince him to be a Dawg.

USC Gamecock

April 11th, 2011
12:42 pm

USC just opened a beautiful state of the art learning center for athletes…fantastic….USC is committed to helping their athletes be the best students possible and this kid seems like a true student who knows how to knock a few heads….can’t wait for the 2011 football season to get here so USC can plow uga between the hedges and show all these georgia folks how to play SEC football!!….CAN’T WAIT!

JB

April 11th, 2011
12:54 pm

I agree. If Geno loves Bama, roll on over there. Great school and coach. We want players in Athens who want to be there. Tide can sign 20-25 players….and there are hundreds to choose from. Go Dawgs.