Robert Nkemdiche vs. Josh Harvey-Clemons

If you follow college football recruiting, you may want to check out Friday’s game between Grayson and Lowndes. It will be broadcast live at 7:30 p.m. on WSB-TV’s digital channel 2.2, several local cable channels (Charter channel 126 and Comcast channel 248.) and via in the Internet on this link. A rebroadcast of Lowndes-Grayson also runs Friday at 1:06 AM on WSB-TV, Channel 2.

What’s so special about this game?

It’s the No. 1-ranked junior in the USA vs. the No. 1 senior in Georgia.

Grayson DE Robert Nkemdiche vs. Lowndes S-LB Josh Harvey-Clemons.

It’s unprecedented to see two Georgia recruiting superstars to play against each other in the same game – with the state never producing a national No. 1 overall before Nkemdiche. Now they won’t go head-to-head on Friday, but their paths will cross. Both 5-star recruits play both ways.

Robert Nkdemiche, the boy who would be king (AJC photo)

Robert Nkdemiche, the boy who would be king (AJC photo)

How good are these guys?

Let’s start with Nkemdiche or “the boy would who be king.” He may be the best prospect ever out of high school in Georgia, which is saying a lot. He’s obviously the first to be ranked No. 1 overall nationally. The 6-foot-5, 270-pounder has a list of his top five schools, with UGA also “in the mix.”

  • One former Alabama football player said Nkemdiche was more talented than anybody he played with on the Crimson Tide’s 1992 national championship team – which had a roster overloaded with future NFL players.
  • “A lot of people compare Robert to Julius Peppers, but the older college coaches that come around … they compare him to Lawrence Taylor,” North Gwinnett coach Bob Sphire said.
  • Nkdemiche is so good that one high school coach was proud of his offensive line for “only giving up two sacks” to Robert. That’s some mad respect. “I know that sounds crazy,” Central Gwinnett’s Todd Wofford said. Note: While Central Gwinnett’s entire offensive line was “quintuple-teamming” to block Nkemdiche, it freed up Grayson’s noseguard for four sacks.
  • Lowndes coach Randy McPherson on Nkemdiche: “He’s a once=in-a-generation player.”
  • After  seeing Robert blast every top OL recruit at last spring’s Nike camp, one noted recruiting analyst said, “His only weakness is that he’s good, too soon.”
  • What do I think? In 25 years of covering high school football, Nkemdiche is the best I’ve ever seen. The only way I know how to describe Robert is this – it’s like watching Dwight Howard as a sophomore in high school, and not realizing you were watching a future NBA All-Star when he was a sophomore in high school.

What about Harvey-Clemons? He’s good, too – ranked by one recruiting service as the state’s No. 1 overall senior. Now he’s not the same caliber of Hollywood leading man as Nkemdiche but neither is any other senior college football prospect in Georgia.

Is Harvey-Clemons the best prospect out of longtime powerhouse Lowndes? That would probably go to Greg Reid, with Randall Godfrey also in consideration. It makes for a good conversation about the trio.

Back to Harvey-Clemons or JHC: He’s 6-5, 200 pounds and has UGA, Florida and Alabama as his leaders, according to Rivals.com’s Keith Niebuhr. JHC so talented that UGA and Florida are recruiting him to play OLB, while Alabama wants him at WR. That’s a very usual range of projected positions, but an surreal amount of credit to JHC’s athleticism and versatility (article continued below photo …)

AJC Super 11 member Josh Harvey-Clemons has a top three of UGA, Florida and Alabama (AJC)

AJC Super 11 member Josh Harvey-Clemons has top 3 of UGA, Florida and Alabama (AJC)

Grayson’s coach thinks Josh Harvey-Clemons is worthy of his recruiting reputation.

“How tall is he? 6-6 or 6-7? He’s huge,” Mickey Conn said. “He’s a big, tall kid that started the season at free safety and all of a sudden he’s moved to inside linebacker. He can do a lot of things to hurt you. You can put him at safety, linebacker, wide receiver and quarterback. He plays them all for Lowndes. He’s every bit as good as advertised.”

What about Nkemdiche vs. JHC? It will most likely happen when Nkdemiche plays RB and JHC is at inside linebacker. And that leads to another interesting story: How did Grayson get to the point where it put a 270-pounder at running back?

They are both great players. If you were a college coach and could only pick one, who would it be?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

“It started with his brother last year,” explained Conn, referring to Denzel Nkemdiche, who is a freshman cornerback at Ole Miss. “We weren’t getting as much production as I would’ve liked at running back so I moved his brother over there. It was like, you know what? As good of an athlete as Robert is, maybe he can be a lead blocker over there. So I put him over there initially to block and started handing him the football. It was like … what in the world? I’ve got a 270-pound running back like Bo Jackson but 30-40 pounds heavier? I’ve got to give him the ball more. So this year, at the start of the season, we started out real slow because we wanted Robert to get comfortable at the DE position first.  We gradually did more and more until he’s  now become a big part in what we do with running the football. Truthfully, it has made him a better defensive end because he’s really into the game. He’s running the ball, then goes to defense. There’s no resting time. He kind of stays hyper. It has been really beneficial to the defense. That was the question I was asking the defense the other day: What do you think about his defense since he has been running the ball so much on offense? They said, ‘Coach, his defense was better. Keep it like it is.’”

AJC Super 11 video of JHC …

– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog

Got an item? mcarvell@ajc.com

Got an item? mcarvell@ajc.com

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.

Please Follow me on Twitter @RecruitingAJC + Please be my Facebook friend here

135 comments Add your comment

Alabamadawg

November 18th, 2011
4:14 am

Wish we could get them both. It certainly doesn’t sould like either one of them will be tapping his helmet wanting to come out of the game.

BigGAdawg

November 18th, 2011
5:56 am

Both or either one. . .I really don’t want to choose unless I can choose BOTH!

BigGAdawg

November 18th, 2011
5:59 am

Actually Both PLUS Jenkins!
If I’m gonna wish then I’m gonna wish BIG!

red&black

November 18th, 2011
6:17 am

I agree guys. But I am the greedy sort. I want all 3 of plus the Marshall-Gurley tandem. Hell I want ‘em all. Like I said, in this situation greed is a good thing………a very,very good thing……..

TIDE PRIDE

November 18th, 2011
6:18 am

Both Bama bound!

UGA is fortunate to be playing a week week schedule – which has kept Richt employed.

Recruits know this – UGA fans know this – everyone knows this.

If UGA had played Auburns, LSU, Bama or ARK schedule – Richt would have been fired by now.

Lookl at Rivals top 30 georgia players – how many are going to UGA? It’s a joke.

red&black

November 18th, 2011
6:24 am

Who left the outhouse door open? See when you don’t close it, the trolls can escape…

poochkiller

November 18th, 2011
6:40 am

Hey red… go put on your black jerseys again… that was fun… please dress up like a transformer against Boise — DO YOUR JOB !! Beat LSU and everyone will be happy !!

tenn.DAWG

November 18th, 2011
6:43 am

You bammers should be recruiting a kicker or planting a few more goal posts in the end zones.
PS,I believe CMR has 3-1 record against bammer.

The New Dawg Consultant

November 18th, 2011
6:46 am

The Nkemdiche saga will have many twists and turns over the next 18 months I am sure, as he is only a junior. As for Josh Harvey-Clemons, I think UGA has a 50/50 shot of landing this kid. He is a good character kid too with a ridiculous athletic upside. I hope to see him in the Red & Black next fall.

Sioux Brave

November 18th, 2011
7:02 am

@Tide Pride

We do play LSU,ALA,ARK., look at the schedule 3yrs ago, plus we had Fla., when they were good, not to mention our rival AUB, and a good Tenn. team. Over the last 5 games played Ga. had a 3 game win streak. Lost to LSU by a bogus celebrating penalty by AJ green. Yes Ga does play that schedule.

B'dawg

November 18th, 2011
7:18 am

Tide Pride what are you proud of? Proud of being on this blog? Im proud Georgia is on your mind this morning son! Thanks. Now you have a Georgia good day.

JB

November 18th, 2011
7:22 am

Tide Pride say’s “week” schedule……………..love them Alabama public schools……….I hope he knows it’s “weak” schedule…………………………..Also, as I said yesterday, with the logic I’m reading on these blogs, Then it goes to say that Florida won the East all those years BECAUSE GEORGIA HAD A BAD TEAM, not they they were that good. Makes sense I guess. GEEZ.

cajdawg

November 18th, 2011
7:23 am

Sounds like a great matchup. Hopefully Nkemdiche’s coach will have the human decency to let him make his own decision. Alabama may be a good “football” decision, but UGA is a better life decision.

JB

November 18th, 2011
7:25 am

Bama starting 8 seniors a 7 or 8 juniors, whom 3 or 4 will probably declare early, thus have 12 new starters next year…and they have QB issues. The issue being they don’t have one. Bama will be 3 years in a row NOT IN THE SECCG next year………Not getting 5 mil worth are they?

B'dawg

November 18th, 2011
7:26 am

B'dawg

November 18th, 2011
7:28 am

ALL ALABAMA FANS NEED TO GO TO THE SITE ABOVE.

JB

November 18th, 2011
7:36 am

Watching SEC football for over 40 years, We all know the worm turns regularly in this league. Florida stunk before Sprurrier arrived. They’ve had a great run. Tennessee had their day. Dawgs during Herschel’s 3 years were unbeatable. Bama between Stallings and Saban were not that good. The worm is now turning again. Florida and Tennessee are a mess. Auburn is in a rebuilding mode. Bama with 12 starters to replace and QB issues could suffer next year. LSU is now a force. Arkansas is hard to beat………..AND LAST BUT NOT least, Georgia will be a load next year. With Murray back and 15 other starters and a load of depth, Richt is about to go on another run. The Dawgs will win 11 next year in regular season and be top 10 all year. Welcome back.

loel

November 18th, 2011
7:39 am

Well that “no talent” state of Alabama better thank God States like Georgia, especially Georgia, provides an abundance of talent to stock their football teams. It baffles me how South Carolina, Tennessee, and Alabama schools have so many players from the State of Georgia.

Week

November 18th, 2011
7:40 am

He not only said “week” but said “week week”…. GO Bmmeir, wiat ddi eye spells thats write?

jim

November 18th, 2011
7:49 am

According to Rivals, Bammer already has 20 commits…that only leaves them room for 18 more.

chris

November 18th, 2011
7:58 am

All ways good to have a bammer boy showing his GAY TIDE PRIDE, sweet GTP. Excellent comments and you gays and mean you guys have a great offence.

Sioux Brave

November 18th, 2011
8:13 am

@Tide Pride
If Alabama was getting the best athelets out of Alabama first. (see Fla. St.) then I would crow about raiding other states. Dont this make you a little embarrassed about the talent in Alabama.

tide roll

November 18th, 2011
8:20 am

Next year, you go from Bean Anderson to Watts Dantzler, Cordy Glenn to Hunter Long and insert Dallas Lee at left guard for Kenarious Gates. Instead of moving Chris Burnette to center you go with another private schooler, David Andrews! And, as usual, you guys will be talking National Title. Richt doesn’t know the difference in these athletes, so he plays them. Bobo does know the difference, yet he plays them. That’s why both should be fired.

Sioux Brave

November 18th, 2011
8:32 am

@tide roll
quote from you “That’s why both should be fired. HMMMM. Sounds like you are getting nervous about next yr. Everbody know if Richt is fired most likely the georgia program would be going backwards. It make you a happy man to think that. Why would the Georgia backers, boooster, fan want to fire a Man who is about to win the Eastern division, you are in La La land.

Simply untrue is the statement "first ever from GA"

November 18th, 2011
8:35 am

I was in HS in the 60s. In my day, Charles Dudish of DeKalb’s Avondale HS was in 1968, the numero uno kid in HS period. NBC or CBS did a nationwide story on him and the recruiting process that was national in scope. QB signed with GT had maybe two fine games and quit and then blew town. Became a street preacher or something.

Roy Stanley from old Atl Carver HS class of 1967 was also tops nationally ……………possibly in football AND Basketball …….signed with UWVA and never heard from again. I worked with him for a summer near Ga Tech as Highway Dept interns. Nice kid in the old Atl racially charged days we ate lunch together all summer at diners and LUMS and older workers in that area told us to “go outside and eat” and I said “NO, YOU GO OUTSIDE” and they usually left us alone.

Ronnie Blomberg from old Druid Hill HS in class of 67 ALSO was considered tops in baseball and was a national HS recruit sensation in Basketball too. Signed with NY Yankess and played for them for several years at first base.

Hershel Walker and about three or four others were # 1.

Georgia has always had top rated kids in several sports …………..if you are OLD ENOUGH to recall them.

Michael Carvell

November 18th, 2011
8:35 am

@Simply true, there weren’t national rankings when Herschel Walker and the others were in high school. If so, some of them — especially Walker — would’ve merited consideration for sure.

jim

November 18th, 2011
8:35 am

@ tide troll…you neglect UGAs 5 star top-rated private schooler from bolles who will probably be starting, too (bammer offered him, too) Maybe private school kids think more highly of their education in Athens than in Tuscaloosa?

outkasted

November 18th, 2011
8:35 am

TIDE Roll why don’t u go help Saban develop some playmakers… is maze the only receiver who is allowed to make a play… and why if u have richardson and Lacy and that so called dominating offensive line that Bama goes 4 wrs in red zone and none of em can make a play….why is Maze throwing the ball in the red zone tryin trick plays… Saban is the best…

1eyedJack

November 18th, 2011
8:56 am

tide roll is a Techie. He’s been busted out on the GT blogs. So yeah, he wants Coach Richt and Coach Bobo fired. And he would like to see us sign all those big dumb offensive linemen that would flunk out of Georgia. That way GT might be able to sign those smart “Private Schoolers” he professes to disdain.

Either that or it’s just that he’s a racist prick. ;)

JB

November 18th, 2011
8:59 am

Well, here we are, less than 48 hours away from Dawgs being SEC East winners, while Spurrier talks about missed opportunities and bad luck again

Most Intresting man in the world

November 18th, 2011
8:59 am

I may not watch a lot of losing college football, but when I do I watch the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. Stay loser’s my friend

Wet Willie...keep on smiling

November 18th, 2011
9:02 am

you losers waiting on Alabama to run dry on talent are in for a surprise! The 2nd team defense will beat UGA today and they’re freshman and soph’s but loaded with talent but don’t let me burst your bubble. Bring your little girls team to T-town next year and you will get a doze of what football is all about. Remember the blackout…2012 will be much worse since we will continue to focus in the 2nd half this time.

JB

November 18th, 2011
9:04 am

Agree about tide roll. He did get caught on the Tech blog referring to Tech as “WE”.

JB

November 18th, 2011
9:05 am

Wet Willie…………second year in a row not in the SECCG….pitiful……5 mil a year?

bucket

November 18th, 2011
9:05 am

If the SEC allows the ALABAMA vs UGA to proceed next year we promise to show up and get our “doze”! lol

coachx

November 18th, 2011
9:05 am

Love the interviews with the coaches.

Rampdawg

November 18th, 2011
9:07 am

Please people, Tide Roll is a Tech Roll. He gave himself/herself away months ago by mentioning that he/her was pissed the NCAA took away their ACC title.

rabundawg

November 18th, 2011
9:07 am

better than H Walker??????? time will tell. I think you most not know of Mr.s Walker’s deeds or seen him play in hs or college…He carried his team to the top bowl 3 years in a row…

JB

November 18th, 2011
9:08 am

Between Stalling’s and Saban, Wet Willie was getting a lot of OT at the pulp mill plant. Couldn’t stand to watch Dubose and Shula get waxed most weeks……Man , those years must of been bad, throw in all the NCAA troubles on top of that………..BAMA, the pride of the state ( when we’re winning that is)

Most Intresting man in the world

November 18th, 2011
9:14 am

@wet willy
Georgia is 3-1 against the tide in the last 4 meetings.

tide roll

November 18th, 2011
9:15 am

UGA FANS LOOK: When you beat Florida way back in 1997, Robert Edwards scored three touchdowns on the ground and Olandis Gary scored one. Your offensive line starters were Brad Stafford at Center (JUCO), Kenley Ingram (JUCO) and Jake Fleming at Guard, Jona Jennings(Buffalo Bills) and Chris Terry(Jacksonville Jags) at tackles. Ten long years later, you finally beat Florida again. This time Knoshon Moreno scored four touchdowns on the ground. Your starting offensive line that day consisted of Fernando Velasco at Center, Chester “Big Cheese” Adams and Vince Vance (JUCO) at Guard, and Trinton Sturdivant at tackle. This year, when you finally defeated Florida again, you started Kenarious Gates and Chris Burnette at Guard, and Bean Anderson and Cordy Glenn at tackle. By my count these are the only times in your history that you’ve started this caliber of athlete in your offensive line. And look what happened! Then, and as per usual for UGA, you go back to your habit of replacing these guys with players that shouldn’t even be competing at the SEC level. And, as can be expected, you sink back into mediocrity THIS IS WHY YOU DON”T WIN CONSISTANTLY AND WHY YOU HAVEN”T WON A NATIONAL TITLE IN OVER 31 YEARS! And incredibly, Richt and Bobo will be up to their old ways next year. You’re where you are this year because of the talent you’re playing on your offensive line. You’ll be where you’ll be next year for the same reason. Things never change at UGA. Never. And that’s a shame.

Most Intresting man in the world

November 18th, 2011
9:15 am

@wet willy
it’s dose , not doze, lived in Tuscaloosa school systems awful

The elf

November 18th, 2011
9:23 am

@ Tide Roll
I have seen these young linemen practice this yr. May be wet behind the ears, but look good in the future, especialy, Young Mr. Andrews. A lot of Ben Jones who is from Alabama. I met Mr. Jones outside a Wal-mart. Very well mannered kid, yes sir, no sir. very good upbringing. I think Our O-line will be good.

1eyedJack

November 18th, 2011
9:29 am

Ok, turd roll, I see what you’re saying. Georgia has a history of having black players on the offensive line.

You’re so smart. Why can’t GT sign some of those awesome nubian Adonises?

GT Fan

November 18th, 2011
9:35 am

Mr. Carvell,

Is Georgia Tech pursuing either of these prospects?

Michael Carvell

November 18th, 2011
9:36 am

@GT Fan, neither Robert Nkemdiche and Josh Harvey Clemons have mentioned Georgia Tech as one of their leaders at the time.

JB

November 18th, 2011
9:38 am

Ok tide roll…..Your coach ( Paul Johnson) is at .663% after almost 4 years…No bowl wins. Gotten you on probation with his” we got bigger fish to fry” attitude…….And you guys are thrilled with him. 4 cokes 4 hot dogs and still running ads to sell tickets. Go Dawgs

Fat Friar

November 18th, 2011
9:38 am

Hey Tide Pride both Malcolm Mitchell and Isaiah Crowell were Bama bound too, how did that work out for them.

JB

November 18th, 2011
9:40 am

That great Bama line with a great RB couldn’t punch out 6 against LSU is 60 minutes, just say’n.

JB

November 18th, 2011
9:41 am

s/b in 60 minutes