LB-DE Josh Dawson commits to Vanderbilt over Notre Dame, UGA, others

Vanderbilt is raiding the state of Georgia for college football prospects.

Josh Dawson, a 6-foot-4, 226-pounder from Tucker High School, picked Vanderbilt among his 23 football scholarship offers, which also included Notre Dame, Boston College, South Florida, and UGA. He will play defensive end or outside linebacker in college.

Vanderbilt has seven commitments for its 2012 recruiting class, including six from Georgia.

Josh Dawson is the second Tucker defender to commit to Vanderbilt

Josh Dawson is the second Tucker defender to commit to Vanderbilt

“I felt like Vanderbilt wanted me more than any other school that offered me or recruited me,” Dawson told the AJC. “It felt like a family there. All the coaches and players have the same  mindset. They want to win SEC championships and the whole BCS championship. That put Vandy over the top with me.”

Who is generating all the excitement among Georgia recruits and generating the high expectations for Vanderbilt? It’s none other than James Franklin, the first-year coach at Vanderbilt.

“Coach Franklin is passionate about winning and the game of football,” Dawson said. “He knows the game and he is serious about it. He’s preaching the things that parents need to hear and the players need to hear.

“People are realizing that Vanderbilt is on the rise. Vanderbilt is serious about competing for SEC championships, so recruits are getting on board.”

Dawson on UGA: “Georgia is a good school. I just felt like Vanderbilt was on me more than Georgia was. I felt like Vandy was a better fit for me.” Dawson said Georgia Tech was recruiting him hard early in the recruiting process but hadn’t had much contact recently.

The Georgia-to-Vanderbilt pipeline also includes one of Dawson’s teammates at Tucker High School, linebacker Jacob Sealand, who turned down schools such as Miami, Virginia Tech, South Carolina and Arkansas to commit to the Commodores.

“Yes, the other Georgia players committed to Vanderbilt were working on me to come there, too, but I’m not going to say that’s why I committed to Vanderbilt,” Dawson said.

Dawson, who has a 3.5 GPA, will study engineering in college.

Vanderbilt’s other Georgia commitments (click on player’s name for more info on each):

RELATED

– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog Got a recruiting item? mcarvell@ajc.com

CLICK HERE to catch up on ALL of the LATEST RECRUITING NEWS

Note: Inappropriate BLOG comments and personal attacks will NOT be tolerated. We love the lively discussions but hate-filled, harassing and irresponsible comments are unacceptable.

Follow me on Twitter @RecruitingAJC

67 comments Add your comment

freedyg

June 20th, 2011
12:01 am

Dawg Dr

June 20th, 2011
12:05 am

I don’t blame Vanderbilt for raiding Georgia High school talent. Tennessee has the worst high school football in the South. We sure got a dandy out of there with Marlon Brown.

Best Wishes

June 20th, 2011
6:15 am

Good Luck to him. He’s not realistic if he thinks VU has a chance to be anything better than .500 while he’s there.

rhall55

June 20th, 2011
6:27 am

This year is the year of the combo DE/LB: J Jenkins, J Harvey-Clemons, Leonard Floyd, Jarontay Jones, Kendrius Whitehead, James Deloach, Stephon Weatherly, Jhaustin Thomas, Darius English, J Gnoniknande, J Manley and J Dawson; plenty to choose from (looks like the year of the J’s also!!!); UGA needs to get the top TWO!!! Also, do not want to lose that Tucker pipeline!!!! WIN BABY: “You snooze, you lose”!!!

Proud-Dawg

June 20th, 2011
7:07 am

Nice pick up for Vandy. I know UGA was after him, but it looks like education was a top priority. Good luck to Josh! Would love to see Vandy become the state of Tennessee football team

Spike

June 20th, 2011
7:10 am

Good luck to him. And also good luck to Vandy on winning all those SEC Championships. Snicker.

Ray

June 20th, 2011
7:20 am

This will be the only time I say First

Ray

June 20th, 2011
7:21 am

Oh wow the comments didn’t even show up that sucks I’m only 7 hours late lol.

RabidDawgFan

June 20th, 2011
7:55 am

I’m sorry but it wouldn’t even look right to see Vandy in an SEC championship game let alone a BCS championship game. Vanderbilt? Good luck to the kid however. Get that degree and change the world.

Frank Lane

June 20th, 2011
8:01 am

Don’t care what you say. UGA seems to be dragging behind others for 2012.

J B

June 20th, 2011
8:33 am

“All the coaches and players have the same mindset. They want to win SEC championships and the whole BCS championship. That put Vandy over the top with me.”

I’m sorry but I had to chuckle at that comment.

Bring Back Wally Butts

June 20th, 2011
8:37 am

Everytime there is a commitment from any player/prospect in this state, the oblivions on this blog start up a chorus of UGA is falling behind, the sky is falling, Richt should be fired, etc.

Give it a break and let the coaching staff do their work. You can offer your opinion next February.

Good luck to the kid at Vandy. Great place to get an education and that correctly seems to be his first priority.

South GA Dawg

June 20th, 2011
8:48 am

I think GT should have pushed for this kid. Hate to see him go out of state with a 3.5 gpa. We need to keep the smart ones and get rid of the thugs.

South GA Dawg

June 20th, 2011
8:52 am

UGA is not dragging behind. The have a limited amount of free rides to offer. The two and three stars better commit early if they want one. The four and five have the opportunity to wait a little longer. CMR has his priorities in tact. We only want the ones that really want to be a Dawg.

Mr. Vandy

June 20th, 2011
9:03 am

Awesome to get another good football recruit!!!!!

We will take what we can get!!!! So much more recruits in Georgia and Florida than Tennessee. Atlanta region has the population of the entire state of Tennessee – and 5 times the recruits. We need to recruit where the recruits are.

Nothing like a new coach to breed some excitment into a program. But let’s be real – a small private school that has higher academic admission requirements (for it’s football players too) means our pool of prospects is much smaller than a Tennessee or Georgia.

If I were the recruiting coordinator at Vandy – we would have to take the Notre Dame approach – and go National. My priority in terms of geography would be Georgia (that Atlanta area first), Florida, Tennessee – and then nationally. Vandy has a great campus in a great part of Nashville.

If Vandy were serious – we will have to double our recruiting budget and invest more in our facilities.

Hope all of you will root for Vandy in the college world series. It would be great to win our first National Title in a major sport – and do the SEC proud.

Go Dores!

track dawg

June 20th, 2011
9:03 am

I have not read on any Uga recruiting website that Uga is recruiting this guy hard. But I am sure he will be a good one.

Asleep at the Wheel

June 20th, 2011
9:05 am

Once again Richt and Co. are falling behind in the SEC. First SC and now Vandy. Buh bye Mark Richt!

Georgia Grad

June 20th, 2011
9:07 am

I find it laughable when a young man from the state chooses an out of state school posters and the AJC staff allege he “turned down Georgia” for the out of state school. However the question SHOULD be “where was GT?”. Carvell and the AJC seemingly take ANY and EVERY opportunity to subtly or overtly slam the Georgia program yet never Fish Fry’s bunch. Where was GT’s recruitment of Dawson? For that matter, where was GT on the other commits from this state who are on Vandy’s list? The excuse can’t be academics as Vanderbilt is a more highly regarded academic institution than GT.

While I’m at it, where is the AJC open records request to the GTAA for any reported NCAA violations? We read the story on Georgia last week, where’s the GT story?

Ramblin Wreck for Georgia Tech!!!

June 20th, 2011
9:08 am

Good luck to this kid – Vandy is great school!

Hate seeing home growns leave the state – this type of recruit would do well at GT and UGA. I see this hurting GT more so than UGA as UGA can cast a wider recruiting net geographically and somewhat academically being a flagship school in our university system. Due to a more focussed academic offering – GT misses out on a lot of great recruits.

However, I think GT and UGA are both have good recruiting years.
Both focus on needs and we have our primary targets.

I follow both schools – and only HATE UGA one game a year. Let’s face it, GT screwed up leaving the SEC years ago. I do get excited when GT plays Clemson, Miami and when FSU rotates in – but beyond that, I would much rather see Tennessee, Florida, South Carolina be on our schedule and see Auburn, Alabama and LSU rotate in at Bobby Dodd. Playing the rest of the ACC is not as exciting. When we did the home and home with Auburn several years ago – that was a blast – and it was great beating them twice. Very hard fought games – and convenient to travel.

track dawg

June 20th, 2011
9:31 am

Vandy raiding Georgia HAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHA! One or two recruits that the in state schools didn’t want bad. Get real!

JD2774

June 20th, 2011
9:41 am

You can only offer so many scholarships. If you have higher rated prospects for positions, you will not offer others. This kid had received an offer from GA not Tech, so the AJC reported it the way they did. GA will still have their 25-28 signees in Feb, so don’t let these stories bother you so much.

JD2774

June 20th, 2011
9:52 am

Looking at the Vandy commitments, it looks like they were really after some LB and DE. No offensive players from GA. Must not have had much depth at those positions.

AJC Joke of The Day

June 20th, 2011
9:57 am

“People are realizing that Vanderbilt is on the rise. Vanderbilt is serious about competing for SEC championships, so recruits are getting on board.”

Good One

JD

June 20th, 2011
9:58 am

lol, vandy serious about sec and bcs championship.

JD2774

June 20th, 2011
9:58 am

By the way, “Georgia Grad”, don’t be so defensive.

bigdog58

June 20th, 2011
10:01 am

I want all the haters to know that Josh looked at both UGA and GT and decided that Vandy best fit him. He wanted to play in the SEC and major in engineering which put Vandy at the top. Ga made a good pitch and GT just didn’t follow up. Josh is one of the top 20 players in the state if you do your research and could have gone anywhere because of his 3.5 gpa but wanted to stay close so that his family and friends could see him play. You people need to realize one thing when it come down to recruiting these kids, they don’t care what the outside world thinks they are looking at their future not yours and if state school think that they don’t have to recruit these kids as hard they will see many more leave the state. Josh we wish you well along with Tucker football program to have another great year. Coach Stephens is still the best in the state and I will be glad to send my son there to play for him. For all you other Georgia recruits that committed to Vandy great job because I know your parents are happy that you are getting a top notch education and will be tomorrow’s leaders. I would love to see the faces of some of these bloggers in two years when Vandy has a better record than UGA and GT and these kids played a big part in that. How dump of a mistake will it be then. Recruits go where you feel the most love and best fits you to help develope your life not anyone else. Good Luck.

It Ain't Rocket Science

June 20th, 2011
10:03 am

Good luck to the young man. He chose what he feels is his best option.

rock steady freddy

June 20th, 2011
10:04 am

Where they gonna get them from, tennerSHE or alerbammer, bwwwaaahhahahaha!!!

Ldawg

June 20th, 2011
10:08 am

Enter your comments here

VA DAWG

June 20th, 2011
10:18 am

Good luck Josh! Vandy is a great school that competes in a great conference. Best of luck. GO DAWGS!

WnE

June 20th, 2011
10:30 am

Missing out on these kinds of Recruits are “killing” GT’s FB program.

6-4 226 out of Tucker HS, with good Grades and intentions to study engineering in college.

GT fans, which LB prospect would you rather have, this SA out of Tucker that plays in DeKalb County or the LB from Alabama that didn’t get any offers from Bama or Auburn.

If i had to roll-the-dice, I’d take the kid from DeKalb County that practiced against/with Vaughters for 3+ years.

Bob Loblaw

June 20th, 2011
10:40 am

Sounds like this kid wants a good degree, not a championship. Good luck.

Keep in mind all of you trolls, UGA can’t and won’t sign all 120 D-1 Georgia prospects.

CantonVandyFan

June 20th, 2011
10:53 am

We need all the help we can get and I’m impressed by the new coach’s recruiting chops. Hope he’s as good a coach as he is a recruiter! We’ll see.

The snickers from most of the UGA posters are highly amusing, considering a 6-7 record and a loss to one of the directional FL schools. So you were the best SEC team with a losing record: right now that makes you the tallest dwarf in the circus!

Homepage | MrSEC.com

June 20th, 2011
11:00 am

[...] the likes of Georgia, Notre Dame and Virginia Tech.Speaking with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Dawson makes it clear that Franklin’s pitch is working.“Coach Franklin is passionate about winning and the game of football.  He knows the game and [...]

FranklinownsDooley

June 20th, 2011
11:18 am

I am not surprised to see UGA fans “snickering” at VU. It’s not like we’re going to win the SEC this year, but if Franklin keeps getting good players, you never know. We have always had good skill players and good linebackers, but we have struggled getting the big boys on the line, if Franklin can do that, I think we’ll be able to take it to the next level.

Should be fun!

VolsRule

June 20th, 2011
11:26 am

At this rate- Vandy might be good enought to beat MTSU one day!!!!

Sir Barks A Lot

June 20th, 2011
11:27 am

Mr. Vandy – rooting for the Dores to bring home the baseball National Title. I agree, that would great for Vanderbilt – and great for the SEC.

Lasso

June 20th, 2011
11:30 am

Seriously, where was Tech in this race??? The in-the-know Tech fans that realize Johnson’s approach to recruiting is FAILING must be outraged.

@CantonVandyFan

June 20th, 2011
11:30 am

Please, please, please, please do not talk down to any school in the SEC. You will only make yourself sound foolish. Yes, ya’ll are smarter than everyone else, but calling UGA “The tallest dwarf in the circus” is downright laughable and you shouldn’t make yourself look that dumb. And I’m not even a Georgia fan.

Dawg Tired

June 20th, 2011
11:37 am

Refreshing. Vandy is a grat educational institution.

Dawg Tired

June 20th, 2011
11:38 am

Obviusly meant to say “great” instead of “grat.” Sorry.

RW

June 20th, 2011
11:40 am

Another commit disses UGA. What a surprise.

BjohnDawg

June 20th, 2011
11:43 am

Good pickup for the Commodores.

Not for all you bellie achers. Dawgs have about 18 scholarships to fill or so we have been told. So they have to be selective. Which means they are not going to sign every great player in the state. Is this young man one of the top 18 in the state. Dont know, but UGA seems to be getting its share, and so Richt and company are doing what they need to be doing.

So get some cheese with the Whine.

Go Dawgs!
And just win the whole damn thing!

PoleSetter

June 20th, 2011
11:43 am

Losing out in recruiting to Vanderbilt??? That’s bad.

GPS

June 20th, 2011
11:46 am

Georgia’s ranked 5th in SEC in recuriting so far on ESPN, about middle of the pack, just what you’d expect from a middle of the pack coach, middle of the pack 6-6 year.

Not surprised

June 20th, 2011
11:54 am

Vandy is already taking the dawgs to the cleaners in baseball and basketball so why not football. Looks like both Vandy and South Carolina are passing the dawgs in the big three sports..

gg4vandy

June 20th, 2011
11:57 am

this is fantastic. Josh sounds like a terrific young man. I loved his comment about Franklin really letting the parents hear about the stuff that is important to them. There are a lot of great guys out there and I know that UGA and GT will get great players too, but I love that Franklin can find these players/students who realize how unique and special Vandy is and how that will play into their future, NFL or not. Go Dores!

Hope many of you in Georgia will support Vandy in the CWS. It is GREAT to be GOLD these days.

Reality check

June 20th, 2011
12:35 pm

Didn’t Georgia have a losing record last year? Their fans shouldn’t be snickering about anyone but instead worrying about their own team.

Reality check

June 20th, 2011
12:36 pm

Same for Tennessee, by the way.

Joe W.

June 20th, 2011
12:47 pm

Have to scratch my head here and wonder just how bright this kid is. Yes, I would have preferred he chose my Irish, but at his skill level, you would think he would choose a program that would best expose his talents for the ‘next’ level. Georgia and several of the other schools he snubbed could have done that for him. Vanderbilt?… I will offer a bold prediction here. We will never hear from (or about) Josh Dawson again… Unless he changes his mind… or transfers at a later date.