Archive for December, 2011

Kenny Orjioke commits to UCLA and ex-Falcons coach Jim Mora

Which ex-Falcons head coach would you recommend playing for?

  • Arkansas’ Bobby Petrino
  • SMU’s June Jones
  • UCLA’s Jim Mora

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Jim Mora, former coach of the Falcons, is making football news again in the Atlanta area.

The newly-hired coach at UCLA landed one of Georgia’s top uncommitted football prospects on Monday night.

Lassiter High School safety Kenny Orjioke said he picked UCLA over Arkansas, Boise State, and Miami among nearly 20 scholarship offers, which also included Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Ole Miss, Vanderbilt and Oregon State. He did not have much contact with UGA.

Ironically, Mora beat out another ex-Falcons coach for the recruit – Arkansas’ Bobby Petrino.

Back  to Mora: He showcased his salesmanship skills with Orjioke, closing the deal in a hurry. Mora offered on behalf of UCLA on Sunday night, with Orjioke calling back to commit the next day.

“I just couldn’t see any of the other schools matching up with what UCLA …

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WR Andrej Suttles makes up for size with speed at East Paulding

WR Andrej Suttles (247sports.com)

WR Andrej Suttles (247sports.com)

This is part of a series looking at some of the state’s most underrated college football prospects (all high school seniors) over the next few weeks:

Player: Andrej Suttles

Position: WR, 5-10, 180

High School: East Paulding

College choice: Committed to Furman

Scouting report from Rusty Mansell of 247sports: Smaller type wide receiver that gets in and out breaks very quickly. Dangerous kick returner and ability to stretch the field as a receiver. Catches the ball out front with his hands and not his body.

They said it: “I think he was the best player we played against this year. I have watched the (CJ Curry) kid up at Flowery Branch and I have seen (Jaquay Williams) at Sandy Creek. He is not big and tall like them, but I think he is overall a more dynamic receiver than they are. He is an explosive playmaker, than can beat you on special teams as a return guy too.” South Paulding coach Tim Glanton

Do you know of a potential D1 senior …

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Eric Bridges is big-time playmaker for Troup

ATH Eric Bridges (Photo courtesy of 247Sports.com)

ATH Eric Bridges (Photo courtesy of 247Sports.com)

This is part of a series looking at some of the state’s most underrated college football prospects (all high school seniors) over the next few weeks:

Player: Eric Bridges

Position: Athlete, 6-foot-1, 188 pounds

High School: Troup County

College choice: Undecided

Scouting report from Rusty Mansell of 247sports: Bridges did not play his junior season and played QB for Troup this past season. Has good size and very athletic with the ball in his hands. Has an above average arm and could project as a safety on next level.

They said it: “He is a playmaker that brings a lot to the table offensively that throws the ball very well. He is just as dangerous when he runs. You think that you have the play stopped and he breaks a tackle or makes a throw in a big situation. He is just a big-time playmaker.” Callaway coach Pete Wiggins

Do you know of a potential D1 senior prospect who is being overlooked? Post his information below.

– By …

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Should UGA have a ‘Dream Team’ recruiting effort … every year?

Should UGA have Dream Team-like effort every year?

  • Yes
  • No, not realistic

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Let’s throw this topic out there for debate:

Do you think UGA should have a “Dream Team” recruiting effort every year?

Or do you think since the Bulldogs appeared to meet expectations last year – that it may be too tough to follow it up with another strong recruiting class? The theory there is that it may be too challenging to sign star recruits at a particular position if you signed a couple at the same spot the previous February.

What about this year? Following the “Dream Team” class, UGA struggled mightily at the start with this year’s crop – termed “the University of Georgia’s Dream Team” by Mark Richt. The Bulldogs started off slowly with both landing top-tier recruits and the overall numbers of commitments, but the recent commitment of No. 1-rated RB Keith Marshall has given UGA a big boost.

RB Keith Marshall committed to UGA but will other big-name recruits follow? (Photo by Shawn Rocco of the Raleigh News & Observer)

RB Keith Marshall committed to UGA but will other big-name …

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Q&A with new Georgia Tech QB recruit Justin Thomas, who de-committed from Alabama

QB Justin Thomas (Photo courtesy of 247Sports)

QB Justin Thomas (Photo courtesy of 247Sports)

Georgia Tech made big news in the recruiting world this week when quarterback Justin Thomas, who had been committed to Alabama for a year, switched to the Yellow Jackets.

The 5-foot-11, 175-pounder is from Alabama’s Prattville High School, and is ranked as a 4-star prospect and the No. 19 all-purpose athlete in the country by Rivals.com. Thomas and Central Gwinnett defensive end Francis Kallon are the highest-ranked members of Georgia Tech’s 14-member recruiting class, which will expand to 17-20 players by February’s national signing day.

Thomas is one of the Southeast’s fastest athletes, and has been consistently clocked in the 40-yard dash at around 4.3 seconds. He guided his high school team to Alabama’s Class AAAAAA state championship, winning MVP honors after registering more than 300 all-purpose yards in the game. For the season, Thomas finished with 1,652 passing yards, 896 rushing yards and 20 total touchdowns.

Thomas …

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RB Mike Davis liked UGA trip so much he will return for official visit

Which RB is more likely to sign with UGA?

  • Mike Davis
  • Todd Gurley
  • Neither

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Stephenson High School RB Mike Davis liked Thursday’s recruiting trip to UGA so much that he plans to come back in January for an official visit.

When asked to rate Thursday’s trip on a scale of 1-10, Davis said, “I’d give it a 10. I was really impressed. They really showed that they wanted me, they really need running backs, and I think I could fit in very well in their offense. It was good visit, they want me to come back for an official visit, and I’m planning on going back there on Jan. 28.”

The 5-foot-9, 200-pound Davis, who de-committed from the Florida last week after being pledged to the Gators for around a year, got the royal treatment during his four-hour tour UGA on Thursday.

After arriving on campus, Davis attended a meeting between UGA assistant Bryan McClendon and the team’s running backs. When practice started, Davis said he spent the entire …

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Dillon Lee’s courtship with UGA is over

AJC Super 11 LB Dillon Lee is also a candidate to be Georgia's No. 1 overall college prospect (AJC photo)

AJC Super 11 LB Dillon Lee is also a candidate to be Georgia's No. 1 overall college prospect (AJC photo)

UGA’s courtship with AJC Super 11 LB Dillon Lee is apparently over.

Lee, who is a candidate to be the state’s No. 1 overall prospect, committed to Alabama over UGA and Florida State last spring.

There was rampant speculation that Lee would consider flipping from Alabama to UGA due to famiy connections — his older brother plays offensive line for the Bulldogs. The younger Lee attended most UGA games this season, and developed a friendship with the Bulldogs staff, particularly LB coach Kirk Olivadotti.

Also working in UGA’s favor were rumors that Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart may be hired away by another school. Those rumors have quieted.

Lee reportedly considered making a visit to UGA last weekend to join his buddy, Stone Mountain High School linebacker Markuss Eligwe (he’s another AJC Super 11 selection, and committed …

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Mark Beard, junior college OL, commits to UGA

Which OL will contribute first at UGA?

  • John Theus
  • Chester Brown
  • Mark Beard
  • Greg Pyke

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UGA is looking for a few good men to play offensive line.

Actually 6.

Or at least that’s the number of offensive linemen that UGA has told recruits and coaches it hopes to sign in February.

The Bulldogs had three OL commitments, and added a fourth one on Wednesday when Mark Beard of Coffeyville junior college pledged to UGA over Mississippi State and Arkansas, according to 247sports.

There was a longtime connection between the 6-foot-5, 297-pound Beard and UGA OL coach Will Friend. Beard is from the Birmingham, Ala., area and was recruited by Friend while he was an assistant at UAB.

Beard will have three years of eligibility at UGA.

Rusty Mansell, National Recruiting Analyst for 247Sports, on Beard:

I think Beard gives …

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Tony Parker leads Miller Grove in ESPN game

Several of the nation’s top college basketball prospects will be on display when Miller Grove plays Virginia’s Oak Hill on ESPN.

The game will be held at 8 p.m. Thursday at Morehouse College.

Miller Grove is the three-time defending Class AAAA state champion and ranked No. 2 in the nation by ESPN.

Miller Grove is led by Tony Parker, the 6-foot-9, 285-pounder who is ranked among the nation’s top 25 overall college basketball prospects. Parker is undecided among Duke, Ohio State and UCLA, among others.

Parker’s teammate at Miller Grove, swingman Brandon Morris, has signed with UGA.

Oak Hill is 16-0 and led by a pair of former Atlanta area stars, Jordan Adams (signed with UCLA) and Damien Wilson (Memphis), along with D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera (Georgetown), Tyler Lewis (NC State) and AJ Hammons (Purdue). Former Rockdale County standout Darion Clark (UNC-Charlotte) also plays for Oak Hill.

Miller Grove is 6-0 after edging out Southwest DeKalb 57-53 in overtime last week.

Admission for …

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Mike Davis, ex-Florida RB commit, visiting UGA

Ex-Florida RB commit Mike Davis will visit UGA on Thursday (Photo by US Army All-America Bowl)

Ex-Florida RB commit Mike Davis will visit UGA on Thursday (Photo by US Army All-America Bowl)

Stephenson RB Mike Davis, who was offered by UGA within hours after de-committing from Florida last week, will make an unofficial visit with the Bulldogs on Thursday.

Davis will leave for an official visit to Florida State on Friday, and also has recruiting trips planned for Clemson and South Carolina in January.

The 5-foot-9, 200-pounder said he is also considering Tennessee and Miami, among others.

Davis has said the commitment of Keith Marshall, who is ranked as the No. 1 RB in the nation by Scout.com, will not affect his consideration of the Bulldogs.

UGA hopes to sign at least running backs this year, with Todd Gurley of Tarboro, N.C., and Davis as the primary targets. What’s the latest with Gurley? It looks like North Carolina is gaining some ground. Here’s an update from

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