Georgia Tech’s pipeline to one of Georgia’s most successful high school programs is alive and well.
Will Adams, a 6-foot-6, 280-pound offensive tackle from Sandy Creek High School, committed to Georgia Tech over Kentucky among his 10 scholarship offers.
“It was down to Georgia Tech and Kentucky, and I kept thinking what does Kentucky have that Georgia Tech doesn’t have?” Adams told the AJC.
“There is a ton of tradition in my family with Georgia Tech. My grandfather went there, my uncle went there, my brother goes there, my best friend goes there, and my other best friend is going to go there. It’s a very prestigious school. No matter what I major in, it’s going to be a degree from Georgia Tech, which is going to give me the upper hand.
“Georgia Tech has won national championships and ACC championships. I don’t care what the NCAA says, they won the ACC championship in 2009. It’s a prestigious school in academics but also in athletics. It’s close to home where I can come see my folks when I want to but it’s far enough that they are not breathing down my neck. I can do the ‘go off to college’ thing which is extremely important to me.”
Sandy Creek is a two-time defending state champion in football. Georgia Tech has had a lot of success recruiting out of the Fayette County school over the years, reeling in talents such as NFL Pro Bowl WR Calvin Johnson, Cincinnati Bengals offensive lineman Andrew Gardner and current Tech safety Isaiah Johnson.
“I think the big thing for Will was the staff at Georgia Tech — he really hit it off with them,” Sandy Creek coach Chip Walker said. “Georgia Tech does a great job of recruiting our school. We’ve had a lot of success with our young men going to Georgia Tech and being successful there and beyond there. We’re real excited about him going to Georgia Tech.”
Adams deserves to be considered among the top offensive linemen in the state, according to his coach. Walker pointed out that his star lineman has gone against many of the state’s most highly-regarded defensive linemen over the past two years, including Thomas County Central’s Ray Drew (signed with UGA), Monroe Area’s Stephon Tuitt (Notre Dame) and Griffin’s Xzavier Dickson (Alabama). Adams has also squared off against some of state’s top 2012 recruits, including Henry County’s Dalvin Tomlinson (undecided) and Eastside-Covington’s Sheldon Rankins (undecided).
“Will has played against some big-time defensive players and more than held his own,” Walker said. “We were fortunate to win all those games. You can’t win all those games if your offensive tackle is getting whipped. He has done really, really well against some great competition. I think Will is the total package as an offensive lineman and can play for any school in the country. We’ve had some really good college prospects come through our school, and Will is right up there with the best of them.”
Ironically, Adams will be playing for the archrival of his childhood favorite, UGA. Adams is a lifelong Georgia fan and said he always had dreams about playing for the Bulldogs. He had interest from UGA but was never offered. Adams took the pragmatic approach to switching sides.
“When scholarship offers start rolling in, as a recruit, you have to take the fan side completely out of the picture,” Adams explained. “The fan in me wanted to play for Georgia. But the rest of me wanted to go to a school and play football where I was wanted. I could say some things about Georgia, but they got who they needed on the offensive line. You know, that’s fine how everything worked out. I just realized maybe that Georgia was not the place for me. Once I had that thought in my head, I realized that it wasn’t the place for me. Then my decision for Georgia Tech got so much easier for me.”
Adams had a whirlwind courtship with Georgia Tech. Adams recently suffered a non-football injury which required 10 stitches in his leg. It caused him to miss participating in UGA’s “Dawg Night” football camp on July 15. Adams said he called UGA to see if he could attend anyways, but never heard back. He then called Georgia Tech to see if he could observe their camp the next day, and was told to come on down. After the camp, much to the surprise of Adams, he got a long-awaited offer from Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson.
“When he offered me, I was blown away,” Adams said. “I was not expecting it at all. He wanted me to make a decision right then, and I said ‘Coach, I can’t make a decision right now. Can you give me a day to go home and talk about it to my parents?’ Then I still could not decide and asked if I could have until the middle of the week. He told me ‘That was fine but after that I’m going to have to send out other offers.’ I spent three sleepless nights trying to think and I woke up one morning and it just hit me. I knew what I was going to do. I knew Georgia Tech was for me.”
Adams actually committed to Johnson last Wednesday but waited until Monday to go public with it because his parents wanted his friends and family members to be able to gather for the special occasion.
“I think Georgia Tech is getting the ideal offensive tackle for their system,” Walker said. “He has got great size, he’s very athletic and he moves well. He comes from our system where we run the football a lot, so he can fire off the ball and knock people back. He also has the skill set to be a great pass blocker, which is maybe not something that Georgia Tech does a ton but it’s something important.
“I’m speaking for myself and not Georgia Tech. I would think they would their offensive linemen to be in the mold of Will — long, athletic guys who can move but can do both run blocking and pass blocking. And he’s very intelligent.”
While Adams is headed to Georgia Tech, the state’s top two OL prospects appear headed out of state. Lithonia’s Joe Harris will announce between South Carolina, Clemson, Mississippi State and Alabama on July 27, while Buford’s Vadal Alexander confirmed that LSU, Alabama and Auburn are his favorites.
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