UGA’s biggest overall priority for the remainder of this year’s football recruiting class is a few big men.
The Bulldogs picked up a desperately-needed commitment on the offensive line when Greg Pyke committed to the Bulldogs on Friday. The 6-foot-6, 300-pounder from Baltimore picked UGA over Virginia Tech, Penn State and Maryland.
Pyke and his parents made the 11-hour journey from Baltimore to Athens on Friday, and gave UGA coach Mark Richt the news before leaving campus.
“We were talking, and Coach Richt said, ‘So what are your options with other schools? And what do you think about Georgia?’” Pyke told the AJC. “I said, ‘I like Georgia a lot and I would like to come here.’ [Richt] said ‘So are you verbally committing?’ I said yes and he stood up and hugged me.”
There was a reason for Richt to be so emotional. Offensive linemen are critical to this year’s recruiting class. Less than a month, UGA didn’t have any OL commits. Now with Pyke, the Bulldogs have three, with John Theus of Jacksonville and Bradwell Institute’s Chester Brown as the other.
“It was a combination of things that made me pick UGA — great football, great college, great atmosphere, and I liked the coaches a lot,” Pyke said. “When I visited Georgia with my parents, they liked it, too, which was important to me.
“Another big thing, I will also have the chance to make an impact next year coming in as a freshman, or have the chance to play next year.”
When Pyke attended Mark Richt Camp in June, the UGA coach made it clear how much the Bulldogs needed offensive linemen. He emphasized it again to Pyke and his parents on Friday.
“He said they really needed offensive tackles and guards, that they were graduating a bunch of seniors next year and, due to injury and other things, they really really need some linemen,” said Pyke, who added that he will likely play guard at UGA.
Pyke said he has a 3.0 GPA and will study Business or History in college.
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– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog Got a recruiting item? firstname.lastname@example.org
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