Jordan Jenkins commits to UGA over Alabama

Jordan Jenkins picks UGA over Alabama on TV

Jordan Jenkins picks UGA over Alabama

Check back for more UGA recruiting news at 11 a.m.

If UGA is going to have anywhere near a top 10 recruiting class, they will need to land some big fish before Feb. 1’s national signing day.

They landed the biggest fish in Georgia on Monday night.

Defensive end Jordan Jenkins, who is ranked as the state’s No. 1 overall prospect by many, committed to UGA over Alabama. The 5-star prospect from Harris County High School also listed Florida and Auburn as his finalists.

“I’m picking Georgia and I’d like to say ‘Go Dawgs,’” Jenkins said on Fox Sports South as he lifted the UGA helmet.

“[It was] just that the depth chart wasn’t as deep, and my family … they didn’t exactly feel safe with me going to Alabama. And I love Alabama, I love them to death. My first few years ago, I thought I was going to end up at Alabama. I never would’ve thought I was going to Georgia. In my first interview with [Scout's Chad Simmons], I said ‘I didn’t like Georgia.’ He tried to save me. He said ‘Did you mean Georgia State or Georgia College?’ I was 14 years old. So [I said] ‘Oh, I meant Georgia College’ …

“Georgia is a better fit for me and my family together because I don’t want to go to some place where my mom is worried about me all the time. I just want to go to a place I can feel comfortable, and I can go to the coach and I can confide in him and stuff like that. And that’s why I chose [Georgia].”

It was a shocking turn of events for UGA with the 6-foot-3, 250-pounder. How much of a shock? Jenkins nearly cancelled  his November official visit to UGA twice due to rampant speculation over Mark Richt’s future. Even after the recruiting trip to UGA, the Bulldogs weren’t thought to be a serious contender – with Jenkins listing Alabama or Florida as his leader since last summer.

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How did UGA pull off the recruiting shocker? Most of the credit goes to UGA defensive coordinator Todd Grantham, who developed a close relationship with Jenkins and his father. They were mesmerized with Grantham’s NFL background and “chalk talk” football conversations.

Jenkins gives UGA some much-needed momentum headed into the final three weeks of recruiting. He is commitment No. 16 for UGA’s 2012 recruiting class and – by far – the most highly-regarded defensive prospect.

“Jordan Jenkins has NFL talent written all over him,” said Rusty Mansell, National  Recruiting Analyst for 247Sports. “He had to play a lot of different positions in high school, wherever they needed him. In college, he will be able to focus on rushing the passer. That’s his specialty, and people get paid a lot of money to do that in the NFL.”

UGA seems to be recovering after a slow start in recruiting this year. The Bulldogs will be hard-pressed to keep their 10-year streak intact of finishing in the top 10 of the Rivals.com team rankings each season (UGA was at No. 21 before Jenkins’ announcement).

The star of UGA’s class is RB Keith Marshall of Raleigh, N.C., who provided Richt with “a moment to grin” when he reported to Georgia on Sunday to enroll early in college. Two other UGA commits, junior college OL Mark Beard and QB Faton Bauta, will also begin classes this month.

What’s next for UGA? RB Todd Gurley of Tarboro, N.C., will decide between UGA, North Carolina, Clemson and NC State at 2 p.m. Friday.

Here’s  video of UGA’s newest commit, DE Jordan Jenkins, an AJC Super 11 selection …

– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog

Got an item? mcarvell@ajc.com

Got an item? mcarvell@ajc.com

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377 comments Add your comment

BobDawg

January 9th, 2012
7:59 pm

D A DoubleU G

January 9th, 2012
7:59 pm

WELCOME to Dawg Nation Jordan!!!!

b.g

January 9th, 2012
8:00 pm

VooDawgChile

January 9th, 2012
8:00 pm

Big Daddy

January 9th, 2012
8:00 pm

Welcome to Athens! It’s great to be a Dawg!

BobDawg

January 9th, 2012
8:00 pm

Go Dawgs!!!!

Football Fan

January 9th, 2012
8:00 pm

Congrats to Jordan. Let’s hope Richt is still there in two years.

AugustaDawg

January 9th, 2012
8:00 pm

Palm City Dawg

January 9th, 2012
8:00 pm

b.g

January 9th, 2012
8:00 pm

Never mind 2nd!

william cranman

January 9th, 2012
8:01 pm

c'mon man

January 9th, 2012
8:01 pm

YES he’s gonna be a part of the “Rings Team” multiple championships~

Go DAWGS

gdawg

January 9th, 2012
8:01 pm

go you hairy dawgs

Football Fan

January 9th, 2012
8:01 pm

I’ll feel bad for Jordan when Richt is fired in two years.

bigtime

January 9th, 2012
8:02 pm

Scared of the depth chart at Bama…lol. Good luck at UGA to a great player. Roll Tide

AugustaDawg

January 9th, 2012
8:02 pm

Dangit!!! Oh well….Get Avery Young and Todd Gurley and pick up a few more top tier recruits…Dream Team II Finish strong. GATA

c'mon man

January 9th, 2012
8:02 pm

Way to close fast DAWGS! Avery Young and the kid from Valdosta and a WR maybe Gurley and this is looking like a GREAT class!

footballfan365

January 9th, 2012
8:02 pm

But but but nick saban always gets the players he really wants! Congrats jordan welcome to uga! Ctg you are the man!!!!

Crimson Tide

January 9th, 2012
8:02 pm

Good luck Jordan.

Mike

January 9th, 2012
8:03 pm

Good for him to commit early so he can get home and watch a game he’ll never play in.

Taco Meat

January 9th, 2012
8:03 pm

GO DAWGS!!!!!

UGAKev

January 9th, 2012
8:03 pm

Told you all so

SouthGaBrave

January 9th, 2012
8:03 pm

Boom! Go Dawgs

Richt gotta go

January 9th, 2012
8:03 pm

What a pick up. Grantham closed the deal.

Taco Meat

January 9th, 2012
8:03 pm

GO DAWGS!!!!!

nash

January 9th, 2012
8:03 pm

I knew he picked UGA when AFF shut down

c'mon man

January 9th, 2012
8:03 pm

Football fan…. You don’t have a clue!

Go DAWGS!

Columbus

January 9th, 2012
8:03 pm

Great job Richt and Grantham! Marshall and Jenkins have their heads on straight and will be GREAT leaders for the team…It is going to be fun these next 5 years at UGA!

James

January 9th, 2012
8:04 pm

Huge get by CTG! Go Dawgs!

bucket

January 9th, 2012
8:04 pm

Welcome to Athens Mr. Jenkins!!! We have alot of targets who haven’t committed anywhere and are still working on a couple who have already given verbals. We have a great chance at closing strong by NSD!

Boom Boom

January 9th, 2012
8:04 pm

Congratulations Georgia fans, you got a good one, now coach him up.

Columbus

January 9th, 2012
8:04 pm

Richt fired…LOL that is SO FUNNY!

BMON

January 9th, 2012
8:04 pm

Go Dawgs!!!!

Jeff

January 9th, 2012
8:04 pm

GATA! Go Dawgs! Him, Ray Drew, Jarvis Jones, etc. OMG!

Really

January 9th, 2012
8:04 pm

We’re rolling….

Daytona Dawg

January 9th, 2012
8:05 pm

I love where this D is headed!!!!

topdawg

January 9th, 2012
8:05 pm

Brought tears to my eyes. This class is shaping up nicely. Join in Josh H. Clemons!!!

AthensDawg

January 9th, 2012
8:05 pm

He is going to be a heck of a player for the DAWGS!!!!

Dogs future

January 9th, 2012
8:05 pm

Nkemdiche and Jenkins will make great bookends in two years.

Blind Willie

January 9th, 2012
8:05 pm

He will not be the last top recruit that UGA gets. Josh Harvery-Clemons, Kendarius Whitehead, Also looking like Todd Gurley is a Georgia Lean.

Charlie Hayes

January 9th, 2012
8:05 pm

Welcome Mr. Jenkins! Your gonna be a DGD! Go Dawgs!

RedandBlackDawg

January 9th, 2012
8:05 pm

Football Fan.

I suppose you are going to tell us you have some insider information, that CMR will get fired in two years. He will still be at UGA in two years and UGA will be SEC champions.

Jeff

January 9th, 2012
8:06 pm

Todd Grantham will turn this guy into a beast!

RollDog

January 9th, 2012
8:06 pm

Great player, but with Richt as leader of our program, we’ll never play in the game being played in New Orleans tonight. Class of 72, Law class of 75.

8th Grade QB

January 9th, 2012
8:07 pm

Great to have him…..Defense was the key to the turnaround this season and of course is the key to winning championships.

Dawg Man

January 9th, 2012
8:07 pm

If Georgia is not the National Champs for the next 6 years, i will just die !!!!! We have the best Team, coach, Defensive Coordinator and the best players !!!!! No one can beat us now. We will go undeafted for the next 6 years !!!! Look for us in the BCS every year !!!!! Heismann next year Murray, next year Lemay, then Crowell then Marshall !!!!! I bet teams will cancell playing unless instead of gettin romped by us !!!! Look to see some forfeits now !!!

Hoopster

January 9th, 2012
8:08 pm

When a kid says that one of the big decision making criteria for his decision is a place where he can fish, well………good luck with that young man. What a riot.

RomeGADog

January 9th, 2012
8:08 pm

No bandwagon here please.

huh?

January 9th, 2012
8:09 pm

Jordan Jenkins said his mon was scared for him @ Alabama and was not a safe place for him???
GO DAWGSSSSSSS

Jeff

January 9th, 2012
8:10 pm

We are a dominant O-line away from winning an SEC title. Maybe a little competition at QB. But that’s it. Our defense is dominant. If they can learn from their 2nd half mistakes vs. LSU and Michigan State then they’ll be one of the top defenses in the country once again.

The offense has got to run the ball more to give the defense some rest. That’s gotta be a point of emphasis in the offseason. Fix the run game. And we’ll be fine. Our defense will benefit from it.