Archive for May, 2012

Will Alabama sign the top 2 prospects from Georgia?

Note: Check out the video for a surprising prediction

Will Alabama sign the top two college prospects from the state of Georgia?

One of them is already committed to Alabama, while the other is rumored to have the Crimson Tide as his leader.

These guys are good. Well, they’re grrreat.

My prediction is that Alabama will get …

  • Neither
  • Reuben Foster only
  • Nkemdiche only
  • Both. Roll Tide

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Robert Nkemdiche, the defensive end from Grayson High School, is ranked as the consensus No. 1 prospect in the nation. He’s the first-ever prospect from Georgia to ascend to the top spot.

Reuben Foster is the linebacker who is ranked No. 2 in the nation by Scout, Rivals and 247Sports. He recently transferred from Troup High School to Auburn (Ala.) High School after his coach was fired but we’re still counting him as a Georgia player.

That’s quite a 1-2 punch of prospects.

What about Nkemdiche? He doesn’t claim a favorite but Alabama and Ole …

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Recruiting Rewind: DE serenaded by Mark Richt, beats Clemson’s Dabo Swinney in pool

ML King WR Blake Tibbs (left) signed with UGA, while teammate Kenderius Whitehead ended up at NC State (AJC)

ML King WR Blake Tibbs (left) signed with UGA, while teammate Kenderius Whitehead surprisingly ended up at NC State (AJC)

NC State pulled off one of the state’s biggest recruiting upsets this year by beating out UGA and Clemson for DE Kenderius Whitehead.

The 6-foot-5, 210-pounder from ML King High School had UGA as his early frontrunner but backed off on the Bulldogs because they wanted him as outside linebacker and he preferred remaining at defensive end in college. Whitehead talked about recruiting with the AJC:

What was the most creative thing a school or coach did to get your attention? “It was when Mark Richt sang me Happy Birthday, because I went down there on my official visit to Georgia on my 19th birthday [on Dec. 9]. They had something for recruits over at Coach Richt’s house. He, his staff and everybody sang me Happy Birthday. They had me cake and everything. I was surprised and shocked.” …

Continue reading Recruiting Rewind: DE serenaded by Mark Richt, beats Clemson’s Dabo Swinney in pool »

Steve Spurrier picks up another Georgia recruit — LB David Johnson

Steve Spurrer has been on a hot streak in Georgia (AP)

Steve Spurrer has been on a hot streak in Georgia (AP)

Perhaps no out-of-state school recruited Georgia this past season as well as South Carolina.

Steve Spurrier signed 12 football recruits from Georgia this past February.

David Johnson, one of Atlanta’s top linebackers, became South Carolina’s third commitment for 2013 on Thursday, picking the Gamecocks over Auburn and Ole Miss, among others.

“South Carolina has done a really good job of recruiting me, I felt home there, and I fit well in the defensive scheme,” Johnson told the AJC.

“I’ve got friends that go there. I’m a fan of South Carolina because of John Abraham. I want to go to a school that wins and can go to BCS games … so I committed to South Carolina.”

The 6-foot-2, 245-pound Johnson will be the third Lithonia High School football star to sign with South Carolina in the last three years, following in the footsteps of OL Joe Harris and LB Cedrick Cooper. “We’re real close … we’re not brothers, but we tell everyone …

Continue reading Steve Spurrier picks up another Georgia recruit — LB David Johnson »

Nick Saban spends 90 minutes on Skype with prized UGA QB recruit

The tech-savvy coach is trying his best to court UGA's QB of the future (AP)

The tech-savvy coach is trying his best to court UGA's QB of the future (AP)

Nick Saban hasn’t given up on flipping UGA’s QB of the future.

The Alabama coach and Brice Ramsey spent 90 minutes talking over Skype on Wednesday, a family member confirmed.

Ramsey, the rising senior quarterback at Camden County High School, committed to UGA last summer over Florida, Florida State and Clemson, among others.

Alabama, Ohio State, Florida and other schools have continued to recruit Ramsey in hopes of changing his mind.

The 6-foot-3, 190-pound Ramsey could not be reached for comment on Wednesday by the AJC but has repeatedly told reporters that he remains committed to UGA.

UPDATE: Rivals analyst Keith Niebuhr tweeted this on Thursday:

Sounds like #Alabama is the only real threat to #UGA for QB commit Brice Ramsey, who told me, “If’s it’s not Georgia, it’ll be Alabama.”

LATEST RECRUITING HEADLINES

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UGA’s Mark Richt and Georgia Tech’s Paul Johnson: Recruiting duties for May?

What are the recruiting duties in May for UGA’s Mark Richt and Georgia Tech’s Paul Johnson?

May is the busiest month of the spring for recruiting, with college coaches hitting the road to visit the high schools of prospects across the country.

Should head coaches be allowed to go on the road in the spring?

  • Yes
  • No

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However, the head coaches are prevented from joining the rest of their staff on the road this month, per NCAA rules. It’s the assistants who get to have all the fun and log the frequent-flyer miles.

So what do the head coaches do in May? A lot more than you think, and it’s mostly behind the scenes.

“You’ve got Skyping, you’ve got phone calls, you’re studying film, and you’re kind of tracking where everybody is – who has committed and who is thinking about committing soon,” Richt told the AJC.

“You’re constantly looking at the recruiting board to constantly see where we are at, and trying to make these decisions. A coach …

Continue reading UGA’s Mark Richt and Georgia Tech’s Paul Johnson: Recruiting duties for May? »

Recruiting Rewind: Auburn DB signee clarifies Alabama rumors, UGA flirtations

Where was basketball star Tony Parker the day before he picked UCLA last month? Hanging out with his longtime buddy, AJC Super 11 DB Josh Holsey (AJC)

Where was basketball star Tony Parker the day before he picked UCLA last month? Hanging out with his longtime buddy, AJC Super 11 DB Josh Holsey (AJC)

Who was the state’s best defensive back this past season? You could make a case for Josh Holsey, who the most talented DB out of Creekside High School since Eric Berry.

Holsey, an AJC Super 11 selection, grew up following UGA but ended up committing to – and signing with — Auburn over LSU, Virginia Tech and the Bulldogs. He reflected on the recruiting process:

  • What was the most creative thing a school or coach did to get your attention? “The UGA coaches all signed my AJC Super 11 photo from the newspaper and sent it to me. I thought that was pretty cool.”
  • What school came in second? What could they have done a little better? “Probably LSU. They did everything right. It’s just that Auburn was my first choice.”
  • What was the biggest recruiting rumor about you that was not true? “There were rumors that I was going to de-commit from …

Continue reading Recruiting Rewind: Auburn DB signee clarifies Alabama rumors, UGA flirtations »

Former AJC Super 11 OL may transfer from Auburn to Georgia Tech, per reports

Thomas O'Reilly

Thomas O'Reilly

Former AJC Super 11 offensive lineman Thomas O’Reilly has decided to transfer from Auburn and he could end up at Georgia Tech, according to multiple media outlets.

O’Reilly could not be reached for comment by the AJC.

If the former Pope High School standout decided to transfer to Georgia Tech, he would likely play offensive guard. He had around 15 offers, including Georgia Tech, out of high school before settling on Auburn,

The 6-foot-3, 300-pound did not play at Auburn as a freshman this past season because of an injury. He will have to sit out next season, per NCAA transfer rules, and have three years of eligibility.

LATEST RECRUITING HEADLINES

WHEN DOES FOOTBALL SEASON START?

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Shaq Wiggins: UGA DB commit from Sandy Creek High School

DB Shaq Wiggins of Sandy Creek HS (AJC/Bob Andres)

DB Shaq Wiggins of Sandy Creek HS (AJC/Bob Andres)

  • Prospect: Shaq Wiggins, defensive back, Sandy Creek High School, Class of 2013
  • Colleges: Committed to UGA on Feb. 10, 2011, among his 20+ offers, which also include Tennessee, Ohio State and Michigan … Despite early commitment, Wiggins has continued to pick up offers, including South Carolina, Clemson, Vanderbilt and Tennessee … During an unofficial visit to Alabama, Wiggins said he was told by Nick Saban, “I’ll offer, if you commit today.”
  • Why UGA? “It’s good football, good education and good people. Coach [Mark Richt], from the way my family and I felt, is a good person. The coaches are truthful and straight up. Plus it’s the home state school.”
  • Vitals: 5-foot-9, 162 pounds. Clocked at 4.5 seconds in the 40-yard dash. Has 3.0 GPA, plans to major in Broadcast Journalism and will likely enroll early in college.
  • Recruiting rankings: 4-star and nation’s No. 86 prospect by ESPN, 4-star and nation’s No. 167 prospect by 247sports, …

Continue reading Shaq Wiggins: UGA DB commit from Sandy Creek High School »

Nick Saban on Georgia recruiting success: “Well, I still have a home in Georgia”

This part-time Georgian built the nation's No. 1-ranked recruiting class by signing 8 Georgians in 2012 (Chick-fil-A)

This part-time Georgian built the nation's No. 1-ranked recruiting class by signing 8 Georgians in 2012 (Chick-fil-A)

Why does Nick Saban think Alabama has success in recruiting the state of Georgia?

This past season, Alabama won a mythical national championship in the Rivals’ team recruiting rankings with a stellar class that included eight of Georgia’s top prospects.

Why the success? It’s almost like Saban lives in Georgia, a reporter suggested.

“Well, I still have a home in Georgia,” Saban quickly replied at a recent celebrity golf tournament.

The coach lives next door to this stunning mansion on Lake Burton. However, Saban’s place is considered just as nice, and he’s a partial investor in the mansion, according to an Alabama spokesman.

Check out the pictures.

He was joking. But his recruiting in these parts – and across the Southeast – is no joke. The part-time Georgian explained his recruiting success within the state:

“I think we work hard in recruiting and try to have a …

Continue reading Nick Saban on Georgia recruiting success: “Well, I still have a home in Georgia” »

Robert Nkemdiche: Nation’s No. 1 prospect officially delays college decision

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

DE Robert Nkemdiche will probably announce on or around National Signing Day in February (AJC)

Everybody will have to wait a little longer for the nation’s No. 1 football prospect to make his college decision.

Robert Nkemdiche told the AJC that he has officially pushed back his tentative announcement on May 18 to a later date.

“I’m just not ready yet,” Nkemdiche said. “This is one of the biggest decisions of my life. I want to go see some new places, and go back to some other places to spend more time with the coaches and to check out the campuses. It’s a big decision, and I want to get it right.”

Nkemdiche’s coach, Grayson High School’s Mickey Conn, endorsed his star player’s delay. “Robert wants to take more visits and get to know the coaches … you know, get a good feel for it before he makes his decision.”

So when will Nkemdiche decide? He’s not going to set another tentative date just yet. But it looks like it will be on or around signing day in February 2013.

“I’m …

Continue reading Robert Nkemdiche: Nation’s No. 1 prospect officially delays college decision »