Francis Kallon, who committed to Georgia Tech, to attend Alabama football camp

There will be at least one surprise visitor at Alabama’s football camp on Wednesday.

Central Gwinnett defensive end Francis Kallon, who committed to Georgia Tech last month, will be working out with other top prospects for Alabama coach Nick Saban and his staff. Kallon is a native of London, England, who has only played organized football for two weeks in his life — his high school’s spring practice in May.

Back to Alabama: It’s not what you think, explained Central Gwinett coach Todd Wofford.

Central Gwinnett DE Francis Kallon has everything you'd look for in a college prospect at defensive end except for football experience (AJC photo by Michael Carvell)

Central Gwinnett DE Francis Kallon has everything you'd look for in a college prospect at defensive end except for football experience. It's coming soon (AJC photo by Michael Carvell)

“All Francis has wanted to do all summer was to get better in football,” Wofford told the AJC. “You take a kid who has never played before, and he wants to take every opportunity to learn the game. With the stuff that happened at Georgia Tech last week (the NCAA penalties), it did make him think about things for a moment. He did, and he’s really, really sold on Georgia Tech.”

“He’s going to Alabama camp because he wants to learn some good technique from some good coaches. He’s also been to Georgia Tech camp a couple of times. These camps, it’s more for the benefit of our team than it is for him or anything else. I want Francis Kallon to be the best player he can be for Central Gwinnett High School this fall.”

Despite never playing high school football, Kallon was considered a “hidden gem” for college recruiters that stopped by Central Gwinnett’s spring football practices. The 6-foot-6, 255-pound Kallon (he’s added 10 pounds of muscle in the last six weeks) quickly stacked up around a dozen offers, committing to Georgia Tech over Arkansas, Vanderbilt, N.C. State, Duke and Syracuse. Kallon and his mother moved to London last year to join his father in the Atlanta area, and the former rugby and soccer player decided to go out for football in the spring.

He’s looking forward to Alabama camp. “I want to learn more. I want to learn something new every day. I can’t get enough of football. I want to get better and better. I want competition. That’s what I really want. I need to go against some good players. It will bring out the best in me.”

Alabama’s coaches did not offer Kallon but have always maintained a curious interest. Several other colleges, including UGA, Florida and South Carolina, have also called about Kallon or invited him to attend summer camps since he committed. Kallon has only been able to attend Georgia Tech camps because of other obligations until now.

What about Alabama? What if they offer? Would Kallon be interested? “I’m going to play football at Georgia Tech. My word is my word.”

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Note: After watching Kallon on film from the spring and observing him in person at camp this summer, I was very impressed. If he had any football experience, he would be one of the state’s top 10 college football prospects, in my opinion. College scouts recruit far more on “potential” than “production” and he’s got enormous potential. He passes the eyeball test with his towering size, he’s got a big-time motor, and unusually quick feet from playing soccer. All the attention from college scouts has given Kallon a tremendous boost of confidence to play football and play it well, now to the point where he is obsessed with learning it. I know, it’s hard to believe I’m saying these things about a kid who has only played two weeks of organized football in his life. But seeing is believing. Everybody will get to see if Francis is the “real deal” rather quickly this fall as Central Gwinnett plays in the state’s largest classification and in one of its best regions. I really think he has got a chance to finish the season as one of the state’s top 10 college prospects.

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– 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

81 comments Add your comment

mowreck

July 20th, 2011
3:49 am

mowreck

July 20th, 2011
3:49 am

Here’s hoping he stays here at GT.

Bama Stan

July 20th, 2011
4:14 am

Georgia Tech = CHEATERS!!!!!

Mr. SEC

July 20th, 2011
5:58 am

Francis Kallon, say good-bye to GT and your offer!

Jacket Man

July 20th, 2011
6:25 am

Actually, Francis is only riding over to Alabama with a team mate but NOT participating.

ACC Forever & FSU Rules

July 20th, 2011
6:29 am

And another one and another one and another one bites the dust……………..great song.

Paddy

July 20th, 2011
7:06 am

You have to like this kids desire to learn a new sport. I hope he makes a good showing this season.

Outside Observer

July 20th, 2011
7:21 am

Before the haters get on here, remember, no more “official visits” once a player commits. Like the article mentioined, the camps are to learn techniques, get a little coaching, and impress. The money is coming out of his pocket, Bama isn’t paying for it for him. No scholarships will be yanked.

Student Athlete

July 20th, 2011
7:27 am

I guess Johnson has been to busy “stewing” over the NCAA to issue his warning about visiting (cheating) with another school to this kid……

UA in the ATL

July 20th, 2011
7:32 am

GA TECH IS A BUNCH OF LOUSY CHEATERS! ROLL TIDE RRRRROLL!

TN Dawg

July 20th, 2011
7:35 am

LOL cheaters!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

.

July 20th, 2011
7:41 am

Here is where all the light saber carriers and action figure collectors start rationalizing how this visit is different and does not qualify for CPJ to revoke the offer….what a joke of a coach and program.

JB

July 20th, 2011
7:44 am

Then it’s over for the kid based on Johnson’s history….His rule, you commit, shopping and visiting is over. NEXT.

Tideman

July 20th, 2011
7:45 am

@ Bama Stan & UA in Atlanta…. You guys need to give it a rest. We have been in GT’s position and it was not fun. How short your memory is.

JB

July 20th, 2011
7:48 am

This is the EXACT reason Tech ends up with a lot of Western Carolina and Lenoir Rhine types.
The good ones, where other schools never give up, do usually take another visit or two. Why not. Johnson gets his panties in a wad and there ya go. I really don’t think Tech see’s what’s coming. Hope I’m wrong. Go Dawgs

Brown Dog

July 20th, 2011
7:54 am

Thanks Tideman, a little perspective from the crimson contingent, please. Other than SMU, no one has been lower than us.

RedandBlackDAWG

July 20th, 2011
7:56 am

This kid has stated GT allows him to be close to his family, so he will still be a GT player after all is said and done. Good for him, trying to get as much knowledge as he can about the game he plays. This kid will do well in life, and with some more experience, he might be a heck of a football player also. Don’t get your panties in a knot Tech. Fans, he is as solid a commitment as any team can get from a player. He will be playing for you.

Ramblin Man

July 20th, 2011
7:57 am

You people are making this out for something it’s not. If you would actually like some facts instead of nicely timed articles go back to April and you will see that kallon has always planned on going to other schools. His family is big on education and he just moved to Atlanta a year ago to be with his father. Barring something else crazy happening this kid is all GT.

Ramblin Man

July 20th, 2011
8:00 am

By schools I meant camps. It’s early and the kid and lab seem to think thief breakfast and needs are more important than football.

NCAA

July 20th, 2011
8:06 am

Bama Stan,

Pot meet Kettle.

You're My Boy Blue

July 20th, 2011
8:06 am

All the talk from his coach is just to cover his ride at Tech. His coach knows Manboobs will pull his offer in a second if they came out and said yes he was looking around due to Tech’s getting caught cheating. Don’t think for one minute that if Bama was to come through with an offer that it wouldn’t change his mind. If an offer doesn’t happen, then Kallon can still fall back on his original commitment and settle with Tech.

Moobs Johnson

July 20th, 2011
8:10 am

Son, you better watch what you are saying. If I even hear about you listening to Saban and a scholly I will pull your offer faster than it takes you to eat a crumpet. I’ve got plenty of other kids who are currently committed to Elon and Georgia State that will jump at your spot on our roster. News like this makes me want to punch Saban in the face.

Tech Insider

July 20th, 2011
8:13 am

Truth be told, all seven of our recruits are checking out options behind the scenes because of the NCAA probation. That’s only natural. We’ll be fine after the storm calms down. I’m predicting everyone but Dennis Andrews will stick. But he had one foot out the door before the NCAA mess.

RambleOn84

July 20th, 2011
8:17 am

It is amazing how many UGA fans are experts on Paul Johnson’s policies.

Now I thought that I had heard from Johnson’s own mouth that he pulled the first kid’s offer because the kid lied to him when Johnson had explicitly told him to just be honest with him. And the second player’s scholarship wasn’t really pulled at all; the kid wouldn’t return calls and had already committed to another school.

Johnson said (and the evidence shows) that these two were special circumstances, and that he doesn’t really have a set rule about kids visiting other schools. Not even “official” visits, much less visits to camps.

But thankfully the experts from UGA keep setting the record straight. Thank you, guys!

Moobs Johnson

July 20th, 2011
8:24 am

Hey Ramble, the simple fact is that a recruiting trip to Tuscaloosa doesn’t happen very often if ever for a GA Tech recruit. So this probably falls into the special circumstance category you are talking about. It’s a lot easier to play the bully when the kid’s other offers are from 1-AA schools.

RambleOn84

July 20th, 2011
8:27 am

Get a life…

My Trophy is in a Closet

July 20th, 2011
8:27 am

Do all of Tech’s recruits now get to visit the trophy in the closet? I’m sure that must be impressive to see the tallest midget award (a.k.a. ACC championship trophy) showcased next to an umbrella and a few coats.

Tom

July 20th, 2011
8:29 am

RambleOn, just take it from someone who’d know…..

“Georgia fans are passionate, but let’s face it – they’re not the brightest fans. Passionate, but not bright.” – Eric Zeier, November 21, 2001 on 790theZone

RambleOn84

July 20th, 2011
8:31 am

Where is Richt keeping those Fulmer Cup Trophies, by the way?

Asheshe football is the bestest

July 20th, 2011
8:31 am

I heard that Central Gwinnett also has a 6′8″ 290 lbs tuba player in the band that has never played football. Maybe if Kallon jumps ship, Johnson can convince him to sign up.

Timmy the first grader

July 20th, 2011
8:34 am

Funny how a fan of a team on NCAA probation brings up the Fulmer Cup. Where’s Rueben Houston nowadays?

Dawg4Life

July 20th, 2011
8:34 am

Love the line, “he is going to the camp to learn how to play football from some good coaches”. Sounds like he has a lot of faith in his new coach. Its alrigtht though, CPJ will get his light saber in a wad and pull his offer. Maybe Baybay and Morgan Burnett can loan him $312 to get a new one.

PS- 2My Trophy is in a Closet- They can’t show recruits that trophy anymore because they didn’t win it… Cheaters never win Techies HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. 9-1 HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA $312 HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Paul N Destin

July 20th, 2011
8:35 am

Sounds like the kid will be a success no matter where he takes his talents. Bama will take full load this year due to a very large Sr class and many more 3 and out guys.

Bama has been to the bottom twice with the NCAA and what GT received from the NCAA was nothing compared to what Bama got in 95. Hootie and Coach Stallings told the NCAA to GTFO and boy did Bama get slapped. Rule #1 …You best help the NCAA when they come to town!

RambleOn84

July 20th, 2011
8:41 am

Reuben Houston is most likely in jail. Is that all you have? I’m waiting anxiously to see what you say about Joe Hamilton in his incident AFTER his playing days. How many UGA DUIs in the past few years?

Luke

July 20th, 2011
8:43 am

Last time I checked, UGA was short on running backs. Let me know if you guys need one or three. I heard Roddy Jones can run through most of your defenders. Maybe if you could keep your players academically eligible, it wouldn’t be an issue.

As for Kallon, can’t hate the kid for going to a camp to learn some better techniques. After all, he IS paying for it. Its about being competitive during the off-season and getting better. If he gets some free stuff while he’s there, so be it. But he’s not going just to watch Alabama’s offensive line plow through people. He’s there to work.

Finally, I’ve yet to see a recruit decommit. Its bound to happen at some point, as a recruit waffles on a decision (he is 17 years old), but I don’t expect it to be one of these guys.

AnnapolisDawg

July 20th, 2011
8:44 am

@ Tom: We’re bright enough not to get caught with our hand in the NCAA cookie jar. Face it, Tech has a hard time recruiting top talent because they run a gimmick offense. Kids don’t want to play in an offense that absolutely no NFL team believes to be credible. Once Francis gets a taste of the SEC you won’t have to worry about Johnson pulling his scholly; can you say “unreturned phone calls?”

freedyg

July 20th, 2011
8:45 am

MOOBS YOU ARE HIRLARIOUS!!

GeoffDawg

July 20th, 2011
8:45 am

Tom – we’ve been through this. 790 won’t confirm yet you continue to libel Eric Zeier. The only possible explanation now is mancrush.

GA HUMOR

July 20th, 2011
8:50 am

I don’t really follow the Dawgs or Jackets … but I read this blog every morning to get a laugh out of the reader comments. How do you guys come up with this stuff? It’s too funny. There are some classics in here already today …

@. (7:41 a.m.) … Here is where all the light saber carriers and action figure collectors start rationalizing

@Moobs Johnson (every post)

@Asheshe (8:31 a.m.) …. tuba player lolol

TOOO FUNNY. Yal have a great day

Tom

July 20th, 2011
8:51 am

Geoff, truth is the absolute defense to a libel claim……and it’s on my side.

Hold up

July 20th, 2011
8:54 am

Yea JB, because you are an expert on Paul Johnson and Georgia Tech lol. Your on here more than Bill King’s blog. Get a life son

GeoffDawg

July 20th, 2011
8:56 am

Not according to 790 Tom.

the comedy continues!!!

July 20th, 2011
9:00 am

The kid must see the writing on the wall. Yech is the dirtiest program in the nation and it’s only a matter of time before they get the death penalty. What a shameless, scumbag athletic department this school has. Even the scrub recruits that Yech is able to pick up are now having second thoughts. Too funny.

PerimeterCenterJacket

July 20th, 2011
9:12 am

This kid has the makings of a total feel-good story. Gotta respect moving here from across the pond and picking up a new (way more dangerous) sport. Now let’s see if he comes through and makes his word as ironclad as he says it is. I’m sure he’s talked to Coach Johnson about these camps, and I doubt it’s the same as taking an official recruiting visit. Anyway, I’m excited this huge guy wants to come play for Tech. Maybe he can do well here and inspire more?

Go Jackets!

The Bees Nees

July 20th, 2011
9:14 am

Cannot wait to see you in White and Gold for the next few years.

gtfanfrom1951

July 20th, 2011
9:17 am

The kid is trying to learn to play American Football….the UGA nuts are back out again today…..Go Jackets…….and to 4377 with NCAA…….2009 ACC Champs

Tom

July 20th, 2011
9:27 am

Perhaps you should go straight to the source, Geoff?

mp

July 20th, 2011
9:30 am

by reading this headline you’d think, “wow, that probation’s starting to take it’s toll.” instead, francis clearly states “his word is his word”. of course, we couldn’t expect the UGA homer carvell to lead with anything POSITIVE after the NCAA took it to tech, could we? how about this headline: “Tech commit getting looks from Saban but still sold on Johnson” would that have killed you?

it doesn’t shock me in the least kallon’s heading to other schools for camps. he’s a raw talent and needs to gobble up as much football as he can. is there a better way for someone who’s only played two weeks of HS spring practice to grow than by attending camps, scoping out your competition, and building your drive for this game?

PerimeterCenterJacket

July 20th, 2011
9:30 am

I love that the way these Dawg fans see it, the Tech program is the dirtiest in the world. Um…let’s consider some programs like, oh, USC? OSU? And, pending NCAA retribution, UNC perhaps? Look, did Tech cheat? Sure. I’ll say it. We broke the rules. Now, does that mean it’s a way of life for our program and we’re the worst there ever was? Don’t be ridiculous. Neither Tech or UGA are that bad when it comes to cheating, and neither have done anything to gain a competitive advantage in recent memory. Tech’s last probation was for violations committed in the late 90’s and the Dawgs’ big Jan Kemp moment was what…in the 80’s? Maybe those were related to actual, competitive-advantage-gaining cheating. Tech and UGA are, for the most part, clean. Did Tech get all haughty and get smacked for it? Yep, and that was unfortunate. But Tech is definitely no USC or OSU in terms of “dirtiest program ever” like some of these UGA-fan comments would have us believe.

@Tom, re 790

July 20th, 2011
9:54 am

So, Eric Zeier purportedly said something negative about Georgia fans (10 years ago – you must have quite the archive). In what context? And even if Eric Zeier thinks Georgia fans are dumb, and is stupid enough to say it publicly, then how much credibility are you going to give the commentator. Logic’s a bitch. I like Zeier but I don’t think anyone is going to use him as an example of Georgia academic excellence or outstanding professional achievement.