INSIDER: UGA DB commit ranks “honesty” as most important in recruiting process

AJC Mark RichtSteven Nelson is not only getting calls from an overzealous “UGA fan” but also recruiters from Texas Tech, Oregon State, Oklahoma, Baylor and Kansas, among the 12 schools that have offered. Nelson, the DB from the California junior college, has been committed to UGA since last February.

He will take an official visit to Oregon State on Oct. 6 and hasn’t ruled out other recruiting trips. Should the Bulldogs be worried? “They have nothing to be worried about unless I feel that the coaches are not being honest with me. I’m looking for complete honesty. I’m still officially committed to Georgia. The only way that would change would be if they were dishonest with me about the opportunity to play right away at boundary corner, and also let me return the ball, because that’s what I do. Whatever school lets me do both, that’s what I’m looking for.” Has UGA agreed to let Nelson do both? “Yes.” Nelson was apparently bothered when he learned that former UGA signee Chris Sanders was returning to the Bulldogs to play the same position until he was dismissed from Georgia Military junior college. “I had to find that out on my own,” Nelson said.

Nelson had the opportunity to redshirt this season at California’s College of the Sequoias, which would’ve left him with three years of eligibility at Georgia. However, Nelson opted to play. “The type of player I am. I don’t feel like sitting out and missing the action. I feel like I can go to the NFL in two years anyways, maybe in one.”

Penn State was the first BCS offer for Grayson DB Kasey Gaines (GraysonRamsFootball.com)

Penn State was the first BCS offer for Grayson DB Kasey Gaines (GraysonRamsFootball.com)

WE ARE PENN STATE: Penn State’s new coach, Bill O’Brien, told the AJC last spring that he would recruit the state of Georgia much more aggressively. O’Brien is a former assistant at Georgia Tech, and his defensive coordinator is Ted Roof, who played football at Georgia Tech and Central Gwinnett High School. They know Georgia talent. So far, this year, Penn State has offered five from the state, including Grayson High School defensive back Kasey Gaines on Sunday. It was the first BCS offer for the 5-foot-11, 160-pound Gaines, who was congratulated on Twitter by his heralded teammate, Robert Nkemdiche. Gaines also took to Twitter to defend Penn State’s reputation, saying, “Believe whatever and listen to media, but it’s an honor to recognized by a program with such tradition. Blessed.” When asked about that Tweet, Gaines told the AJC, “A lot of people think Penn State may be going down the drain, or whatever. Some people are saying it’s a rebuilding year. The way I look at it, I’m happy they choose me and they were interested in me to be part of rebuilding the program. That’s how I look at it.” Is Gaines seriously considering Penn State after all that has happened there, including the NCAA penalties? “Honestly, it stinks that I can’t play in a bowl game if I went there. But it’s not like that would affect my total decision. I still think it would be an honor to play there, regardless of everything.” At this point, it appears that Penn State’s toughest competition for Gaines will be Harvard. He also has offers from Virginia Military, Presbyterian and Howard. Gaines is also getting hard looks from Wisconsin, FIU and Miami of Ohio. “That’s a tough choice for me, whether I want to play ball with the big boys in D1 at Penn State, or get that degree from Harvard,” Gaines said. Gaines made the signature play of Grayson’s state championship season, returning an interception 15 yards for the game-winning touchdown with 27 seconds left in the region championship against Brookwood. His older brother, Korey Gaines, signed with BYU out of high school and now plays at a California junior college.

Reuben Foster, nation's No. 2 overall prospect who is committed to Auburn (AJC)

Reuben Foster, nation's No. 2 overall prospect who is committed to Auburn (AJC)

HOLY COW: Did you hear about this scrimmage at 7 p.m. Thursday? Reuben Foster’s old high school, Troup, will play against the 5-star linebacker’s new high school, Auburn High School. The winner gets to keep Reuben on their roster for the rest of the season. We’re kidding about that. But expect emotions to be riding high when the two teams meet. Neither side is speaking much publicly about it, but there are some hard feelings about Foster’s departure from Troup. Of course, in Foster’s defense, he only left because his former high school coach at Troup was fired. And, in case anybody wanted to know, this game was scheduled before Foster changed zip codes. Last year, Auburn did a scrimmage at Troup. Note: If you’re attending the scrimmage, Auburn High School plays off-campus at Duck Samford Stadium.

Marist DT Steve Wallace has a Kentucky offer (AJC)

Marist DT Steve Wallace has a Kentucky offer (AJC)

MARIST IS LOADED: Marist has one of its largest classes of D1 prospects in school history. TE Greg Taboada has more than 20 offers, including Alabama, FSU and Vanderbilt, among others. Nose tackle Steve Wallace (6-0, 280) has an offer from Kentucky. “He’s low to the ground, and plays hard and aggressive,” Marist coach Alan Chadwick said. Then there’s a pair of speedsters in RB Gray King (5-11, 175), who has an offer from Air Force, and RB-DB Myles Willis, who switched his commitment from Central Florida to Boston College. Chadwick on King: “He’s got great quickness, cutting ability, and outstanding at changing directions. He’s a good athlete who runs well with the ball. He has great speed.” Willis may be the fastest player at Marist in Chadwick’s 28 years as coach. Willis was recently clocked at 4.34 in the 40-yard dash. “That’s pretty darn close as the fastest player we’ve had. I can’t remember anyone faster. We’ve had some 4.4 guys, though.”

STILL WAITING: What’s the latest with Auburn signee JaQuay Williams? “Nothing yet,” according to Sandy Creek coach Chip Walker. Williams is still finishing up an online class and waiting for permission from the NCAA Clearinghouse to report to Auburn. He still plans to play this season. The backup plan is for Williams, who was ranked as the state’s No. 1 prospect at WR this past season, to enroll at Auburn in January. He’s currently training at Sandy Creek.

Vidalia ATH Nic McBride

Vidalia ATH Nic McBride

SLEEPER ALERT: One of the state’s top sleepers is Vidalia High School athlete Nic McBride, who plays QB, WR and DB. He’s 6-2, 210 pounds and is being recruited by colleges at safety and linebacker. He has early offers from South Alabama, Middle Tennessee State, and Furman. He’s also getting looks from Duke, Ole Miss, Wofford, Georgia Southern and Florida. He’s got a 3.85 GPA.

THIS JUST IN …

BECAUSE WE MISS THE OLYMPICS

MORE RECRUITING

– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog

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.

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95 comments Add your comment

Mountain Dawg

August 22nd, 2012
12:23 am

Nelson sounds like another Energy Vampire, which we have had enough of, already.

Mountain Dawg

August 22nd, 2012
12:25 am

Also don’t care if I never hear Robert N’s name ever again.

Mountain Dawg

August 22nd, 2012
12:26 am

Also, also #1.

Russo

August 22nd, 2012
1:22 am

To Mr. Gaines, go to Harvard.

To Mr. Nelson, I suggest you contact the UGA staff about what was “agreed” upon. You’ll have an opportunity at corner and as a return man, but with the talent already on campus there’s no way you won’t have to earn it, first. And publicly declaring your intentions to bolt for the NFL in a year won’t help your cause. By all accounts you’re an intelligent kid with a great work ethic, but a little reality check is probably in order.

MattMD

August 22nd, 2012
1:26 am

Clemson blows, PSU is worse.

Paddy

August 22nd, 2012
6:33 am

Nelson’s attitude should be looked at from a different direction. Any player w/ that kind of edge to him can be a real asset. If he is that good he will play. All players know that compitition is stiff at any elite program and will fight for playing time and position preference. The NFL will let him know if he is ready not the other way around. So lets let the UGA coaches handle this young man and welcome him as a Dawg!

Golden White

August 22nd, 2012
6:39 am

Even though I am a Tech fan I am also a CMR fan. He is a good man and a good coach and I will leave it at that.
But if Steven Nelson is going to dictate the grounds for signing with the University of Georgia as well as to declare that UGA is only a stop on the way to the NFL, then I should wonder if Coach Richt is that desperate. Lord I hope not.

GT = 10 time loser to Mark Richt

August 22nd, 2012
7:06 am

If Nelson thinks he will be given the job he can forget it. He will have to earn a spot no matter which team he goes to. If he was worried about Sanders taking his spot then what’s he going to do in the NFL when teams are constantly trying to upgrade every position.

RedandBlackDAWG

August 22nd, 2012
7:20 am

At 160 pounds, I think he might need to put on some weight to that 5′11″ frame to ever see the field in div. 1. Needs to hit the weight room and a good training table regiment. You have to wonder though, how much he can really gain at his height before it starts having an affect on his speed.

Max Sizemore

August 22nd, 2012
7:25 am

Anybody know if the Marist Steve Wallace is related to (probably the son of) the Steve Wallace who played tackle at Chamblee, Auburn, and San Francisco? Looks like him, for sure.

Ole Big Dawg

August 22nd, 2012
7:42 am

I dont think folks are too enamored with Nkemdiche and this will be the last time I speak on him. The kid essentually took him self out of the fray when he chose the ACC school Clemson….Yawn..

Moobs Johnson

August 22nd, 2012
7:58 am

With that type of attitude, Steven Nelson will fit right in with the rest of the me-first “student” athletes. What happened to earning playing time, now they expect it to be given to them?

kingdaddy

August 22nd, 2012
8:16 am

I like a corner with a little swagger, but if I was a UGA corner when he arrived, i’d make his life a living hell. You think our other corners aren’t listening to to his “demands”? Lil fella needs to work himself onto the squad just like everyone else. No exceptions!!!

A person SMART enough to know.....

August 22nd, 2012
8:22 am

You don’t have to put RN’s name in every article about a Grayson player.

Good for the young man. he will get a great education and play on TV every week.

kingdaddy

August 22nd, 2012
8:25 am

Moobs
not that you really care, but there aren’t many player’s left on this team that aren’t team first. There WAS a problem, not so much now…

kingdaddy

August 22nd, 2012
8:32 am

How about some more info on McBride. Got to love them country boys fro South Ga. Smart guy, good size, how fast???

kingdaddy

August 22nd, 2012
8:34 am

BTW M.C.,
With the exception of the mention of R.N., good article…

A person SMART enough to know.....

August 22nd, 2012
9:04 am

Great movie on FX if some of you have a chance to watch it….ROUNDERS…..

Big Crimson 75

August 22nd, 2012
9:13 am

in Foster’s defense, he only left because his former high school coach at Troup was fired.
———-
MC — that’s usually what happens when someone breaks Rules — multiple times — with warnings. What world do you live in??? ya homer.

collegeballfan

August 22nd, 2012
9:15 am

I trust the young man with the choice of Penn State for football or Harvard for academics uses the brains he obviously has.

Remarkable

August 22nd, 2012
9:18 am

Go to Harvard. It’s a no brainer!

DawginLex

August 22nd, 2012
9:27 am

Harvard or Penn State?

In 2 years, the football will be equal so go get the Harvard education

JB

August 22nd, 2012
9:29 am

Roof is at Penn St. Boy, they got bigger problems than they think.

JB

August 22nd, 2012
9:32 am

I can’t believe what a big story this is about the Georgia fan contacting a recruit. How much conversation goes on to a commit in School, the neighborhood, church, the store and on and on. It’s a non story. These guys talks to “fans” EVERYDAY about their choice.

JB

August 22nd, 2012
9:33 am

Obama went to Harvard………….Geez.

JB

August 22nd, 2012
9:35 am

Be glad when RN get’s to Clemson, blends in, goes away, redshirts, and becomes just another college player. Geez.

JB

August 22nd, 2012
9:39 am

Whatever became of the Bama players, on tape, in a clothing store getting free clothes? I bet the Tech folks would like to know. $300 worth of clothes got them 4 years probation, 100k Fine and stripped of an ACC title…. Don’t seem right from even from this Dawg’s perspective.

AnnapolisDawg

August 22nd, 2012
9:54 am

Best of luck Kasey and congrats on the D1 offer. PS will offer you a great education and a chance to be a part of something special. I hate that collegiate athletes are paying the price for what adults did in the past. Take their football revenue for the next 4 years as punishment but these kids had nothing to do with the situation that happened.

Big Crimson 75

August 22nd, 2012
9:58 am

JB — I understand the hatred to Bama. It sucks for Tech to receive their punishment for something so trivial.
Every great Dynasty in history has had their “friends of the program”.

Sam Gilbert was the biggest “donor” in the history of College Athletics.THE BIGGEST!!! It’s not even a close 2nd!!
Gilbert could’ve bought & paid half these “Southern” Boosters twice over.
Does that take away from what John Wooden did at UCLA? Wooden is arguably the most successful Coach in sports history! He knew who Sam Gilbert was & what he was doing.
Does that change your perception of Wooden? Do you think those UCLA teams should be stripped of their Titles? That’d be a whole lot of stripping!!!
……and, I can assure you their are “friends of the Program” in Athens.

Who Cares

August 22nd, 2012
10:12 am

matt

August 22nd, 2012
10:20 am

As a recruit you should know that your not going to be given squat. if you want to play right away you got to earn that spot. Common man grow up.

Tech dropout

August 22nd, 2012
10:27 am

I guess the other Grayson players do not deserve a name other than Robert Nkemdiche’s teammates.

DawginLex

August 22nd, 2012
10:45 am

Yeah the constant woody for RN on here is a little disgusting and over the top

PMC

August 22nd, 2012
11:37 am

Could always play D1 at Penn State for 2 years then go to Harvard and get the degree.

Fred

August 22nd, 2012
11:39 am

@RedandBlackDAWG – Kasey is really, really fast and reads the play very well. He puts himself in a position to be able to make the play most all the time. When you get hit by him, you know it!

1 4 GT

August 22nd, 2012
11:41 am

Hey crackerhead! Can you swell up Nkemdiche’s head any bigger. Enough with the stories about this kid. He’s NOT God!!!!!!

1eyedJack

August 22nd, 2012
11:56 am

I wouldn’t want to read anything more about RN even if he was committed to us.

1 4 GT

August 22nd, 2012
12:06 pm

I think this blogmeister writes about Nkemdiche because he is soooo proud of himself for being able to spell & pronounce his name correctly.

Big Albany Dawg

August 22nd, 2012
12:32 pm

Cut the rope on the Nelson kid. That guy thinks’ he’s a DIVA already. As though UGA and coaching staff need to run decisions on recruiting other DB’s by him first.

Joey

August 22nd, 2012
12:33 pm

Ditto, 1 4 GT.

Didn’t read this report, MC, but always do. My reason is that I couldn’t care less what RD or his teammates do. He’s gonna play for Clemson. That’s in South Carolina.

What, does AJC have 3 Clemson fans reading this?

Enough with him . . .

Indian Dawg

August 22nd, 2012
1:43 pm

“A lot of people think Penn State may be going down the drain, or whatever.

No….Penn State’s already in the sewer. This is common knowledge!

sgmjohndavis

August 22nd, 2012
2:28 pm

Someone please send a tape of Nic McBride to CMR/CTG to evaluate. This is the type of student and athlete that deserves an invite for an “unofficial visit.” Let’s go after recruits that deserve a shot.

Obama Insider

August 22nd, 2012
3:31 pm

JB,

How do you know where Obama went to college? He won’t release any college transcripts. I have a friend who called the other day and said he won’t release transcripts because he applied as a foreign student.

PAR

August 22nd, 2012
5:23 pm

Nothing is given. Everything is earned.

I'm tired of the arrogance of these kids today.

August 22nd, 2012
5:39 pm

Nelson, either come to UGA or don’t. We’re not gonna kiss your a$$.

Tampa Gator

August 22nd, 2012
6:02 pm

Good to read what this recruit has to say about honesty. I just read that Outlaw’s “decommitment” from Florida was mostly about his refusal to inform the Florida’s coaches about his descipline issue related to his high school team.coaches, and his unwillingness to be honest with the Florida coaches about what actually happened. The Florida coaches just no longer trusted Mr. Outlaw….and everyone moved on. Sounds like a good thing for Florida. Also sounds like Georgia will get a good kid with this recruit.

Delbert D.

August 22nd, 2012
6:06 pm

Harvard? Heck, yeah. Take that one unless Stanford offers, then it would be a tougher decision.

Bob

August 22nd, 2012
6:08 pm

Mr. Nelson, you sound a lot like Jakkar the Hitman, and guess what happened to him? Wise up young man.

Game Changer

August 22nd, 2012
6:16 pm

SEC football starts in 8 days, full schdule in 10 days. Not one quality article of interest by the ajc sports reporters. PITIFUL GUYS, did you guys go the the Mark Richt school of no work ethic??

Delbert D.

August 22nd, 2012
6:24 pm

They have this obligation to report all things Braves. Too bad.