(BREAKING: Click here to read about top UNC recruiting target in Georgia shocked by firing of Butch Davis)
Joe Harris, who is considered by some to be Georgia’s No. 1 college football prospect on the offensive line, committed to South Carolina on Wednesday.
“I love everything about South Carolina — it just shines brightly to me,” Harris told the AJC.
The 6-foot-4, 290-pounder from Lithonia High School picked South Carolina over UGA, Clemson and Mississippi State among his 13 early offers at DeKalb County’s football “Media Day.”
“South Carolina is on the rise; they have some of the best players in the country with Marcus Lattimore and Alshon Jeffrey,” Harris said. “They need some help on the offensive line. The coaches feel like I can be someone who can give them some immediate help. I really like South Carolina’s coaches, and I think they will help me bring out the best in me as a football player. South Carolina has a great atmosphere for college football. They have some of the best fan support anywhere, win or lose. But they’re winning now, and I want to be a part of that winning.”
The Gameocks also gained inside position due to Cedrick Cooper, who played at Lithonia last season and ended up signing with South Carolina. Said Harris, “We’re really good friends. He told me a lot of good things about South Carolina. We played on the same team in high school, and want to do it again in college. I also know Sharrod Golightly [freshman safety from Southwest DeKalb High School], and some of the other Atlanta recruits who have already committed to South Carolina this year.”
What about UGA? ”I had people in my family and teachers who wanted me to go to UGA,” Harris said. “It’s a good school. But I just didn’t connect to UGA as well I did with the overall situation at South Carolina … South Carolina is just a better fit for me.”
Said Lithonia coach Marcus Jelks, “UGA was one of the first to offer Joe. But other schools recruited him much harder over the last few months.”
South Carolina has 17 players committed for its 2012 recruiting class, including 7 from Georgia. Said Jelks, “Harris is a big, strong kid who has a lot strength and power. He’s also a natural leader at the position. He’ll be a good one for South Carolina.”
UPDATE: One of Georgia’s top basketball players has Duke, Memphis and Ohio State as his leaders. Tony Parker, a 6-foot-9, 270-pound forward from Miller Grove High School, is also talking with North Carolina and NCAA champion UConn (click on story link)
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– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog Got a recruiting item? firstname.lastname@example.org
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