Robert Nkemdiche: Nation’s No. 1 football prospect set to announce on May 18

DE Robert Nkemdiche will announce his college decision after Grayson's spring game on May 18 (AJC)

DE Robert Nkemdiche will announce his college decision after Grayson's spring game on May 18 (AJC)

Robert Nkemdiche, the nation’s No. 1 overall football prospect, ranked his visit to LSU as a “10” and set the date for his highly-anticipated commitment.

The 6-foot-5, 270-pound defensive end from Grayson High School told the AJC that he plans to reveal his college decision on May 18 — after Grayson’s scrimmage to end spring football practice at the Gwinnnett County powerhouse.

“I’m ready to commit because I know where I want to go,” Nkemdiche said. “I feel like I’ve seen all the places I needed to see, and talked to all the coaches everywhere.

“I don’t feel any need to wait any later than the spring. I’m ready to get it over with, and then I can focus on other things … my senior year of high school, my schoolwork, and helping Grayson try to win the state championship again.”

Nkemdiche (pronounced Kim-DEE-Chee) said his top five schools “in no particular order” are LSU, Alabama, UGA, Ole Miss and Clemson. He also likes Texas, Oregon, Florida, South Carolina and USC.

What’s next? Nkemdiche confirmed that he is “probably not” going to visit Vanderbilt next week because of travel constraints. He is also unlikely to go to Mississippi State on March 31.

However, Nkemdiche is considering returning to Alabama and UGA to watch a day of spring practice.

How did it go at LSU? Nkemdiche made his first-ever visit to the SEC powerhouse over the weekend and gave it high marks. When asked to rank LSU on a scale of 1-10, Nkemdiche said “I’d give them a 10.”

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“LSU felt like it was home. They’ve got a great tradition of defensive linemen. I feel like I could do some good things  there. I could see myself playing there.”

Nkemdiche got a lot of one-on-one time with LSU coach Les Miles. “He’s a good dude. He really seemed to know what he is doing as a coach. Coach Miles told me that he would take care of me and get me to the next level.”

On Saturday night, Nkemdiche got to hang out with Heisman Trophy finalist Tyrann Mathieu aka “the Honey Badger.” Said Nkemdiche, “He’s short and small, but he’s fast and he’s really, really good. He’s a really cool person and was telling me that LSU is a great place to go to school.”

“It was a good trip. I liked LSU a lot, and I got to see some new things and some different things.”

Nkemdiche was accompanied on the trip by four of his Grayson teammates:

Grayson DB Ryan Carter

Grayson DB Ryan Carter

  • DB Ryan Carter (5-11, 175) , who is waiting on his first offer but has interest from Wisconsin, LSU, Ole Miss and UGA. “He’s a real good defensive back,” Nkemdiche said. “He plays very smart. He looks like another Troy Polamalu out there with the way he’s flies around and hits people.” Carter and Nkemdiche are close friends and have played football together since middle school.
  • DB David Kamara, who already has offers from Clemson, Ole Miss and Mississippi State. Kamara thinks his next offer may be from LSU or Arkansas.
  • DB Kasey Gaines, who made a defining play in Grayson’s state championship season last year by breaking a tie with archrival Brookwood by returning an interception 15 yards for a touchdown with 27 seconds left in regulation. Gaines, whose older brother played at Grayson and signed with BYU out of high school, is waiting for his first offer.
  • FB-DB David Fennell. He missed his junior season with a back injury but is 100-percent healthy and has been cleared for spring practice.

Grayson, with around 6-7 D1 prospects on the team, has spring football practice from May 7-18.  Nkemdiche said he plans to commit after the team’s spring game on May 18. Grayson is the defending state champion in the state’s largest classification, and the team is being mentioned as a candidate to be ranked No. 1 in the nation for next season by several high school polls.

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371 comments Add your comment

Crimson Crush

March 19th, 2012
12:04 am

“I’m ready to commit because I know where I want to go,” Nkemdiche said. “I feel like I’ve seen all the places I needed to see, and talked to all the coaches everywhere.

Will be nice to get RN in Tuscaloosa for a spring practice with larger crowds than many teams home games ;-)

SSgt Dawg

March 19th, 2012
12:08 am

Dad

March 19th, 2012
12:12 am

I wish my son was one of his friends!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saban owns this state

March 19th, 2012
12:13 am

Yawn. What number do you want to wear, Robert?

James

March 19th, 2012
12:16 am

UGA fans:

We shouldn’t even try for Nkemdiche. Saban gets WHATEVER he wants, and we don’t have a shot. Just ask Isaiah Crowell, Jordan Jenkins, Ray Drew, etc. etc.

Flo-Ri-Duh

March 19th, 2012
12:19 am

I’m glad he says he is ready to get it over with because this is getting old. Even after he commits i wouldn’t be surprised if he kept making visits.

FL Jacket

March 19th, 2012
12:22 am

” I got to see some new things and some different things.”

Uhhh…how on Earth is Baton Rouge different from Athens, Tuscaloosa, Clemson, or Oxford?

pj

March 19th, 2012
12:29 am

Sooooo – he gets back from his LSU visit – calls it a “10″. Says he thinks Les can “get him to the next level” – and follows his visit immediately with “I know where I want to go” and sets an announce sate for 7 weeks from now. Seems obvious to me, but then again – he is a 17 year old and Saban is one sneaky and vicious SOB.
Go Dawgs, but I would put us 3rd in this race at best. Let’s work on Foster and some more OL and WR prospects – oh – and anyone who can play cover corner and not get arrested.

Mountain Dawg

March 19th, 2012
12:29 am

James

March 19th, 2012
12:33 am

For Robert’s sake, thankfully he’s good enough that Satan won’t yank the rug underneath his feet and pull his scholarship at the last minute of NSD.

Blackoutanyone?

March 19th, 2012
12:36 am

James… X. Dickson, Lamichael Fanning, Kenyan Drake, Brandon Greene, Dillon Lee, Geno Smith, Dalvin Tomlinson and Rueben Foster said hello.

K Dawg

March 19th, 2012
12:58 am

I think if we evaluate Nkemdiche as a TIGHT END like we did with Cam Newton, then it will make Robert dump Bama and go to UGA!

Tossed Salad

March 19th, 2012
1:27 am

pj if it’s obvious to you that he’s going to LSU then you must be new to the recruiting game. His h.s. coach delivered him to Saban long, long ago. This one had nothing to to with Saban. Conn would have gift wrapped him to Shula.

Guess

March 19th, 2012
2:01 am

@Tossed Salad – Do you really believe that a kid is going to make one of the most important decisions of his life based off of where his high school coach wants him to play? If so, you must be really naive. Yes, I know he has probably influenced him, but I seriously doubt Robert Nkemdiche is going to pick Bama just because his coach wants him to.

anybody notice?

March 19th, 2012
2:35 am

That the poll lists the names of four universities from the southeast and the name of the best coach in college football?

Guess

March 19th, 2012
2:40 am

I noticed it. I must admit, it gave me a laugh.

Douglas

March 19th, 2012
3:51 am

I know he is not going to UGA even though I think our DC is better than Kirby Smart. I don’t think we will ever get a recruit from Grayson because their coach played at Bama — might as well stop recruiting players from that school.

TDawg

March 19th, 2012
4:38 am

Kirby Smart is not a defensive coordinator. He carries Nick Saban’s clipboard. Nick has been the DC on every team he has also been listed as the head coach. That’s just a title for Kirby. The only value Kirby brings to Alabama is recruiting. He is the master of negative recruiting. Kirby used negative recruiting against his former boss, Coach Mark Richt, to get all those recruits out of Georgia this past year. He has burned the bridge with UGA. Most UGA fans don’t ever want to see him back in Athens again as a coach. I don’t.

slydog

March 19th, 2012
5:35 am

“Will be nice to get RN in Tuscaloosa for a spring practice with larger crowds than many teams home games”

Uhh, you do know this is still a teenager, right? Stop sounding “funny” around another young man…lol, what exactly does Bama have to worry about? does Bama even need RN? Dude it’s one player, get over it. 100,000 people at a Spring game smells of misplaced obsession, not love for an individual player. Where were those 100,000 people when Alabama was getting hit with Tornadoes? Where are they now? Anticipating the arrival of a teenager at a meaningless spring football game. get a life.

Dust Dawgs

March 19th, 2012
5:37 am

I think he is all DAWGS because he will b close 2 home like he already says he wants 2 b and if you look at the defense this yr and the class of 2013 the way it is shaping up 2 b y not come 2 UGA and get coached up by the best DC in the land i meen look what Coach Grantham has done in 2yrs ranked 26th total defense first yr then the next yr 5th with some of Willie Martinez kids…… Come 2 GEORGIA Nkemdiche and help win BIG

slydog

March 19th, 2012
5:40 am

I know somebody gone get their feelings hurt from what I ad to say, but truth is truth. And truth hurts sometimes. I will be glad when he finally makes a “non-binding” verbal commitment announcement and receives his new car from that respective school (all elite prospects get cars and money). Then maybe people will stop following him around 24/7. And here is the funny part, after 3-4 years of school, he may not be the best player at his position, regardless of school. Funny how that all seems to workout.

WoW

March 19th, 2012
5:49 am

Where were the 100,000 Alabamians when the tornadoes hit? Just wow. We were homeless, volunteering (great groups of AUBURN fans came to help as well), donating. Pretty uneducated remark.

tenn.DAWG

March 19th, 2012
6:11 am

Everyone knows his bammer coach has been pushing him towards Saban.Lets just hope he has a little state pride, and wants to play where family and friends can watch.

JB

March 19th, 2012
6:33 am

I hope our football team hasn’t slipped to where our basketball team has always been…..The very very best leave the state and the “second tier” end up in Athens…..And that’s a damn shame.

Mike

March 19th, 2012
6:49 am

crimson crush, of course you guys have huge crowds for your spring game……there is nothing else to do in Tuscaloosa. Geez.

Good fellas

March 19th, 2012
7:20 am

I have a lot of respect for Robert trying to help out his teammates. He’s one of the few five stars that doesn’t have the “me complex.” It’s refreshing to see. I wish this young man well wherever he goes. I hope it turns out to be Georgia.

Real Problem

March 19th, 2012
7:26 am

I think this is a Bama lock….kid likes their program and what is there not to like. Bama is on a roll and now doesn’t even have to take the elite in their state because they are now recruiting on a national scale.
Here is the good thing about Georgia……we have enough elite players in this state not to have to recruit on a national scale.
Here is the bad thing about Georgia……we do not keep the elite players from leaving the state:(:(:(.
Now would someone PLEASE tell me who in the world is going to play OL at a high level for Georgia this year. And please do not tell me it is going to be a TRUE FRESHMAN.

FL Jacket

March 19th, 2012
7:29 am

Wow…I guess one can’t make a joke around here about other members of the Grayson football team who might also get an SEC offer or speculate that RN’s high school coach might get the Cordarelle Patterson/Avery Young – type treatment without getting a post pulled…

DIT

March 19th, 2012
7:31 am

I’d like to see UGA get him, however, all the signs point to Bama. Persoanlly I’d be shocked if he went anywhere else.

Double T

March 19th, 2012
7:32 am

Should we assume that Kamara will get an offer to UGA before May 18 and if so, why not? I doubt that we will get RN, but it does not seem like wenhave played this one correctly with losing his brother, and now not offering Kamara, sorry but that us how the game is played these days. If Kamara goes to Bama, I give him 1 year, 2 at best to be on the travel squad.

ElvinBishopBand

March 19th, 2012
7:32 am

We can count our NC trophies…way in the helllll do you do in Athens at A-day? I guess a trip to Clarke County jail would be OK. UGA football Big Hat and No Cattle…..1980….Ruff Ruff

Robert needs to shut his piehole! “Les Miles…good dude”. I hope he selects Bama but if not we will be just fine. It appears this guys 15 minutes of fame will continue right up to NSD (Nick Saban Day).

TennesseeDawg

March 19th, 2012
7:35 am

You poor tree assassin, ball flashing Bammers are going to be sorely disappointed when he picks LSU. LSU is offering his buddy Kamara and both will commit.

GtDawg

March 19th, 2012
7:46 am

@ blackoutanyone? That last one might be a little premature, per Best Friend Trey Matthews
http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=espn:7678618

Tid1945

March 19th, 2012
7:47 am

Hey TDog,

It sure would be nice if you could give a specific example of Kirby’s negative recruiting.

Bandwagon Bammer

March 19th, 2012
7:54 am

Woooohooooo! Dem Tigers better not try and still our boy Robert. We’ll poison dem swamps and walk around Baton Rouge with our junk out!

[...] question for RN now is does he want to play in a 3-4 or a 4-3. Either one he will do great in. Robert Nkemdiche: Ranks LSU visit as “a 10″ … and sets announcement for May 18 | A… BTW it appears he team mate Kamara will also get an offer from [...]

A Father

March 19th, 2012
7:57 am

Most defining comment regarding LSU visit: Les Miles really knows what he is doing?

David C

March 19th, 2012
7:58 am

The writer of this story must really hate Nick Saban. When voting on Nkemdiche prediction you list him instead of the actual school? Bama Lock. Been for a while. Who wouldn’t want to play for the College that has won 2 of the last 3 National Championships and is poised to make a run again this year.

BobDawg

March 19th, 2012
8:00 am

enough with the “tornado” comments from both sides… Both states have been hit hard by these dastardly events and both states have helped each other immensely. My heart still aches for the Tide’s long snapper who lost his girlfriend in that massive storm.

Good luck to RK on his college decision and glad he is not dragging it out for all.

A Father

March 19th, 2012
8:09 am

slydog: As a GA alumni, the devestation and dire straights of so many from the 2011 spring toranado outbreak is somthing I had never visually witnessed in person in my first 50 years of life. One thing my travels to Alabama just after the toranado outbreak in 2011 did was leave a lasting image that will never go away. The words Death, Horrow and Devestation do not even begin to describe the feeling one experiences when on site.

A Father

March 19th, 2012
8:14 am

Why GA loses so many players from Gwinnett and Dekalb. High School Coaches call College coaches and suggest certain players on the team that should be contacted immediately about interest and then visit at the high school to start the process. I cannot count how many time Georgia never moved and yet, Alabama, LSU, Auburn, Vandy and many other SEC have moved even when the distance is alot further than a one hour drive. This has taken its toll on our GA program.

LAZY COACHES AND RECRUITING

News | MrSEC

March 19th, 2012
8:15 am

[...] 18.“I’m ready to commit because I know where I want to go,” Nkemdiche told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I feel like I’ve seen all the places I needed to see and talked to all the coaches [...]

Dad

March 19th, 2012
8:32 am

UGA will not get him cause they will NOT offer his high school buddys, they will take RN but not the whole Grayson secondary!!!!!!!!!!

what a joke

March 19th, 2012
8:42 am

montavious adams is the best DL in GA! it’s not even close

RxDawg

March 19th, 2012
8:55 am

Well I’m glad RN is getting his commitment out of the way early. Will free up the runner ups to concentrate on the others. Good move Robert.

NoGaGator

March 19th, 2012
8:56 am

Sounds like Nicky Has told him it’s time to close it down – even tho’ we’ll still hear about his every move for yet another 2 months. Wonder if he and HoneyBadger were able to compare their nice doos?

Smyrna Gold

March 19th, 2012
9:03 am

Ga Tech will take the whole dang team. Coaches and all. Even the cheerleaders..

Bobo for Attorney General

March 19th, 2012
9:05 am

Nkemdiche would make a great long snapper.

slydog

March 19th, 2012
9:05 am

@WoW

March 19th, 2012
5:49 am

Where were the 100,000 Alabamians when the tornadoes hit? Just wow. We were homeless, volunteering (great groups of AUBURN fans came to help as well), donating. Pretty uneducated remark.

Whatever, I was there. There were not 100,000 “fans” helping those people. There were not 100,000 people who were homeless either. Talk about uneducated remarks. This infatuation over a child is sickening.

Flo-Ri-Duh

March 19th, 2012
9:17 am

UGA beats LSU/Bummer in the title game and the recruiting landscape changes. There are few “loyal” recruits or coaches these days. It’s old fashioned. Honesty and ethics are a lost art. This is March – signing day is a long day off and until it’s in writing who cares?