Dillon Lee called the head coaches of his four finalists before announcing his commitment to Alabama on Monday evening.
The 6-foot-4, 210-pound linebacker picked Alabama over Florida State, while UGA and USC tied for third. He called the head coaches of the respective schools (and was unable to reach USC’s Lane Kiffin).
Nick Saban’s reaction? “He was excited.” Did he have anything witty or funny to say? “No, not really. But he was really excited. I don’t think he’s the type to jump up and down.”
How did UGA’s Mark Richt take the news? “I said ‘Coach, I’m committing today and I’m not coming to the University of Georgia.’ Then I told him Alabama. Coach Richt said ‘That’s great. Coach Saban has a great program there. Best of luck.’”
Lee made numerous recruiting trips to both FSU and Alabama; He never made an unofficial visit to USC, and Georgia was the last in his stack of nearly 20 scholarship offers.
Ironically, UGA was most recent, despite the family ties — Lee’s older brother, Dallas Lee, plays offensive line for the Bulldogs. Georgia linebackers coach, Kirk Olivadotti, called Lee with an offer from the Bulldogs on May 2. Georgia hired the former NFL assistant on Feb. 18.
“I was very serious about Georgia,” Lee said. “My brother plays there. You know, they just came in too late. They came in real late.”
Dallas attended Monday’s announcement and said he supported his brother wherever he decided to commit. “A lot of Georgia folks wanted him to come there when he got that offer. But really that was up to Dillon. I didn’t pressure him about it. It would be cool if he would’ve come to Georgia. We’d get to play together in college. He didn’t feel like Georgia was the best place for him — so ‘Bama it is.”
Sign of the times? When Lee called each college to inform them of his decision, they both congratulated and said they would be in contact very soon. After all, a lot of things can change between now and signing day in February 2012. But Dallas isn’t expecting his brother to switch.
“I’m sure everybody will still recruit Dillon, especially with how recruiting is nowadays,” Dallas said. “People don’t think an early commitment is really where they are going [to sign]. But I didn’t change my mind after committing early, and I don’t see him changing his. He put a lot of thought into it. He’s pretty solid on Alabama.”
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