Carl Lawson: What happened between 5-star DE, his four D1 teammates … and UGA and Georgia Tech

Milton High School may have its best crop of college football prospects in school history with five seniors committed to BCS conference schools, including the nation’s No. 5-ranked overall recruit and a running back that is now considered one of the state’s top five at his position after missing nearly all of last season with an injury.

Why aren’t any of them going to UGA or Georgia Tech?

That’s a question asked repeatedly and almost daily to Milton coach Howie DeCristofaro and his five seniors – DE Carl Lawson (committed to Auburn), RB Peyton Barber (Ole Miss), OL Cory Helms (Wake Forest), OL Eason Fromayan (TCU) and OL Josh Harris (Wake Forest)

Milton is an affluent suburb of Atlanta located 35 miles from Georgia Tech and is home to one of UGA’s most fervent fan bases.

DE Carl Lawson is ranked by ESPN as the nation's No. 5 overall college prospect. His dad played football at Georgia Tech and he grew up a UGA fan. He's committed to Auburn (AJC)

DE Carl Lawson is ranked by ESPN as the nation's No. 5 overall college prospect. His dad played football at Georgia Tech and he grew up a UGA fan. He's committed to Auburn (AJC)

UGA has yet to offer scholarships to any Milton players, while Georgia Tech heavily pursued Lawson and Barber.

Ironically, both UGA and Georgia Tech had connections to Lawson, who is ranked by ESPN as the nation’s No. 5 overall prospect. The 6-foot-2, 250-pounder is the son of Carl Lawson Sr., who played fullback on Georgia Tech’s 1990 national championship team. However, the younger Lawson grew up a fan of the Bulldogs.

What about Georgia Tech? “They offered me. I just didn’t want to lead them on. I never really felt Georgia Tech was the place for me.”

And UGA? Well, that’s a little more complicated. “They never really recruited me,” Lawson said. “I was really in love with Georgia. I used to be a huge Georgia fan. But by the time they finally came to the school, I had already established relationships with all the other schools.”

Lawson became an instant celebrity after his performance at a junior all-star game last December, was flooded with scholarship offers over the next couple of months and committed to Auburn on March 24. Lawson said UGA recruiting coordinator Rodney Garner came by the school once during the winter, but that the Bulldogs didn’t get really serious until May – when defensive coordinator Todd Grantham stopped by for spring practice.

“It was kind of like how Georgia did with Jordan Jenkins last year, because I followed that. They didn’t  really recruit him hard all along … But there are no hard feelings toward Georgia. They’re going to have a great recruiting class at Georgia, and we’ll do well at Auburn.”

Despite being blocked by two and three defenders on nearly every play, Lawson has 13.5 sacks in six games this year for Milton. At the junior all-star game, Lawson dominated practices with his aggressive and relentless play, reminding one scout of a “young David Pollack.”  The 5-star will wait until after the season to decide if he will visit other schools than Auburn.

Continued below the photo …

Peyton

Two D1 RBs at Milton: Junior Treyvon Paulk (No. 1) has early offers from two SEC schools and wants to get looks from UGA, Tennessee and Florida. Senior Peyton Barber (No. 25) is committed to Ole Miss (AJC)

Meanwhile, the 6-foot, 225-pound Barber has rushed for 1,110 yards this year after missing nearly all of his junior season with torn ligaments in his ankle.

Many schools wanted to see Barber run as a senior before offering, but he decided to go ahead and commit to Ole Miss over Arizona State and Clemson on July 29. It’s shaping up to be a brilliant recruiting move by the Rebels. Barber will take official visits to Ole Miss, Arizona State and Wisconsin but said he remains “99.9-percent committed” to the Rebels.

Barber had early offer from Georgia Tech before the Yellow Jackets got two other commitments at running back. “I’ve always been a fan of Georgia Tech, but I probably didn’t want to run in the type of offense they had,” he said.

What about UGA? There has been very little communication, even though the Bulldogs are still seeking at least one running back in this recruiting class after 5-star Derrick Henry de-committed from UGA and later pledged to Alabama. UGA is still targeting some higher-profile running backs, including Norcross High School’s Alvin Kamara.

“I’m not a Georgia fan after I went to Dawg Night [summer prospect camp] a couple of years ago, and I had a bad experience,” Barber said. “I didn’t feel like I got a good look there. I wasn’t put in the groups that all the other players were put in. It’s all good, though. I’m happy with Ole Miss.”

Helms said he had moderate interest from UGA and Georgia Tech, but decided not to wait any longer and committed to Wake Forest over North Carolina and South Florida. Harris picked Wake Forest over Maryland, South Florida and Marshall, while Fromayan switched his commitment from Cincinnati to TCU.

There’s more D1 prospects coming out of Milton in the future: Trayvon Paulk is one of the state’s top juniors at RB with early offers from Ole Miss, North Carolina and Vanderbilt; he would like to get looks from UGA, Florida and Tennessee. Meanwhile, Milton sophomore OL Nick Wilson has early offers from Tennessee and North Carolina.

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86 comments Add your comment

JB

October 10th, 2012
11:16 am

I’m stunned at the number of Dawg fans i talk to that are fine with waving pom poms beating Vandy and Kentucky to a pulp…and Tech… And that winning 9 or 10 games and a decent bowl is fine with them to be able to keep Richt. They say we need to realize we are step above those type teams and a step below the Bama’s……..Geez.

CRACKATOE

October 10th, 2012
11:16 am

Forget about coaching for a moment. South Carolina played with much heart and courage
while georgia played with none.

hunkerdown

October 10th, 2012
11:22 am

I would be all over the kid Lawson if I were a recruiter from GA. To past up a kid of this talent is a mistake. But I never thought that the Dawgs pursue Clowney hard (not that he was an in state but he sure ripped us up last Saturday) when everyone was marveling over the kid. I know that there is so much talent in the state and you can only recruit so many. But it concerns me when teams like USC have as many players from GA as SC and tear us up on the field.

Rick James

October 10th, 2012
11:40 am

@hunkerdown

October 10th, 2012
11:22 am

I would be all over the kid Lawson if I were a recruiter from GA. To past up a kid of this talent is a mistake. But I never thought that the Dawgs pursue Clowney hard (not that he was an in state but he sure ripped us up last Saturday) when everyone was marveling over the kid. I know that there is so much talent in the state and you can only recruit so many. But it concerns me when teams like USC have as many players from GA as SC and tear us up on the field.
—————————————————————————————————————————–
Does Georgia not have players from South Carolina? Isnt the top wide receiver in the state committed to Georgia? Did you know that AJ Green was from South Carolina? No coach get them all..

WnE

October 10th, 2012
11:41 am

re:
Barber had early offer from Georgia Tech before the Yellow Jackets got two other commitments at running back. “I’ve always been a fan of Georgia Tech, but I probably didn’t want to run in the type of offense they had,” he said.
_______________

CPJ’s Triple-SLOPtion offense:

The “gift” that keeps on giving……………………lowly ranked & poorly talented Recruiting Classes that is!

WnE

October 10th, 2012
11:45 am

re:
Barber had early offer from Georgia Tech before the Yellow Jackets got two other commitments at running back. “I’ve always been a fan of Georgia Tech, but I probably didn’t want to run in the type of offense they had,” he said.
______________

This is where putzes like FL Jacket chime in and say that the Recruit is not being honest , he was really scared of GT’s elite Academics and didn’t want to study hard.

No way could it be the fault of CPJ and his gimmicky Triple-SLOPtion Offense!

Bobo sucks

October 10th, 2012
11:54 am

Kelsey Griffin Committed to S Carolina today!!! Funny how they whoop on the DAWGS on the field and off! Crown Spurrier

Bobo sucks

October 10th, 2012
11:57 am

Maybe kids will decommit from the 1-4 Auburn Tigers and sign with UGA! Then again I forget who is on UGA coaching staff, nevermind

Former Coach

October 10th, 2012
12:08 pm

Not trying to bash UGA about recruiting, completely agree with the statement above about not being able to sign everybody. The kids may also not fit the system. One thing I’ve seen is that UGA typically will only recruit 5 star kids and they haven’t panned out into 5 star players. Alabama signs Mark Ingram, a 3 star, and turns him into a Heisman Trophy winner
About the kids at Milton, you couldn’t ask for better kids on and off the field. Great character and very humble. The Lawson kid was note sent home due to character, he just chose not to compete and risk injury so they sent him home. The phenom from Grayson chose not to go for the same reason!
The Barber kid is as good a kid you will find, period, no questions!

7576DAWG

October 10th, 2012
12:17 pm

McGarity was hired to improve on the current rankings of the Athletic department of UGA compared to the rest of the SEC. It is real easy to get complacent in Athens because it is such a great school and place to live. The Football program is by far the most important sport because of the amount of money it generates . I hope McGarity does not lose his enthusiasm and desire to make Georgia a national power. I can’t observe any of the coaches in action or hear them talk to recruits but McGarity sure can, to see if any changes need to be made. The most important change that I would like to see is a younger and very energetic Recruiting Coordinator. Garner needs to be put out to pasture. His recruiting techniques are out of date with the 70’s and 80’s system. We need someone who will see half a dozen high school game a week , in person. I feel Garner uses the internet for nearly all of his correspondence because he is lazy, old and just doesn’t have the energy to be the most important person on the team which is the RECRUITING COORDINATOR. Give him a desk job but Georgia need new blood in their recruiting efforts.
Georgia should have so many recruits that have them at the top of their list of schools to attend that we should be able to pick who we want every recruiting class.
The biggest change that McGarity should make is to end the embarrassment of giving 5 to 8 walk on scholarships per year. How can we compete with the great teams with no quality of depth.

Duncan

October 10th, 2012
12:21 pm

Spurrier’s a good X and O man but he doesn’t recruit character any more than the next guy. He simply turns a blind eye when his kids screw up. Has worked well for him I must say.

7576DAWG

October 10th, 2012
12:31 pm

If you average giving 5 scholarships to walk-on’s every year for 4 years , by the time the first class become senior’s you will have 20 scholarship on the team who started as walk-on’s. That amounts to nearly 25% of the team members. I know that the scholarships are given out to represent one year at a time, that the walk-on has to earn the scholarship every year but knowing the kind of man CMR is , I doubt very many walk-on’s lose their scholarship once they are given one. These scholarships should have been given to 3 to 5 star recruits. MCGARITY CAN CHANGE THIS SELF DESTRUCTIVE PATTERN. PLEASE MAKE RECRUITING A PRIORITY AT GEORGIA . BUILDING DEPTH IS THE ONLY WAY.

Alphare

October 10th, 2012
12:35 pm

7576, you talk with tongue in cheek with that 25% number. I’d say it’s like UGA skips a class once in every 4 years.

7576DAWG

October 10th, 2012
12:51 pm

Alphare
You missed the point . I could have used 10% or 15%. It doesn’t matter. If we are giving more than 1 scholarship every year to walk-on’s it is too many. Giving 1 scholarship to the best walk-on would be okay if he is good enough to play in games but as many D-1 recruit’s that come from Georgia every year and then probably 25 or more from adjacent states Georgia should be able to fill all their recruiting openings every year without giving walk-on’s scholarships. Walk-on’s are simply not good enough to fulfill the depth needed for the SEC.

Dawg-Gawn

October 10th, 2012
12:52 pm

@7576DAWG:

I hear your passion and I feel your pain but what you are conveying is simply not true! Seven scholarships were handed out to walk-ons this season, those ships could not be used for the 2013 recruiting class. UGA has 9 EE (early enrolls) counting against the 2012 recruiting class. NCAA rules only allow 25 ships for each class, UGA only signed 16 recruits for the 2012 class therefore allowing for 9 EE’s. The seven ships given to the walk-ons would have gone to waste… why not reward those who have shown promise and build your scout team around the scholarship team?

This will be the loop-hole for teams in the future looking to add talent!

Please don’t add to the negative if you have no clue as to what you are speaking about… do research before you spout at the mouth!

I’m not trying to bash but just inform!

“Stick with Richt”

“Faith in Team”

“BELIEVE” in the “G”

Jimmy B

October 10th, 2012
1:12 pm

All of your base belong to Clemson and South Carolina… we now own the state of GA. Get use to it scrubs!

7576DAWG

October 10th, 2012
1:34 pm

Dawg-Gawn
You missed my point even worst than Alphare. Because we only signed 16 recruits Mark Richt is able to bring in 9 early recruit’s which will help cover up how bad Georgia did last year recruiting. I’m glad we are able to make up such a deficit six months early but if we had signed 25 last year we would not have to do it this way. I would rather have had 9 more 3 to 5 star recruits who would nearly have a year in our conditioning program and learning our play book.
If we have scholarship left over after signing day and after exhausting our efforts to bring in Junior College players, that instead of wasting scholarships we might as well give them to our walk-on’s. I’m okay with that but Georgia is in the SEC and we need to sign the maximum every year on signing day. I know the numbers are not ever going to be perfect because kids fail or get kicked out os school but you don’t think that is an embarrassment for a team with our reputation to sign only 16 recruits last year. When we do that bad it puts us behind other schools who have no problem keeping close to the 85 numbers without using walk-on’s. Georgia will do okay this year but the last three years of recruiting as really hurt us in building the kind of depth it takes to win the hard games against good teams. There is a reason why we have done so bad against ranked teams in the last 3 years.

7576DAWG

October 10th, 2012
1:49 pm

Dawg-Gawn
I will sum up my reply that Carvell apparently thought was too long and screened it. Everybody that has any sense and follows Georgia recruiting knows what you said. You didn’t say anything that we all don’t know.
The entire point that I am making is that it is an embarrassment for Georgia to have only signed 16 recruits last year. You can not compete with the ranked teams , who have NO trouble signing the maximum every year. They are building the depth that you should be building. These teams would have brought recruits in on August 2012 to learn the play book and get the experience that ours won’t get until they enroll early 2013. The reason we have such a terrible record against ranked teams the last few years is because Georgia has no depth of SEC quality players.

Former Coach

October 10th, 2012
1:58 pm

Lawson never got his ego fractured. Nick Saban was at the school just days after the National Championship game. Garner came to the school and acted like he had to be there just because Saban was recruiting the kid. Again, not bashing UGA, maybe they didn’t think the kid fit their system, I get that. Also, as far as Lawson getting sent home from the Nike deal, solely based on him not wanting to compete in full pads and having the possibility of getting hurt. Some people on here bash these kids and never really know them, that kills me. He is a great kid, will do extremely well in college.

Neutral

October 10th, 2012
2:25 pm

Am I the only one or have others noticed how easily these kids get their egos fractured? Sounds like several schools including UGa did not bow and kiss Carl’s ring during his junior year in HS so he committed to the first school that did. He may be making a big mistake because he could have played for his home state…….and the Auburn coaching staff may be gone very, very soon! Look what they did with Tuberville just a few years ago and he was and still is a great coach. Tuberville never lost 10 games in 1.5 seasons!

G-Dawg

October 10th, 2012
2:35 pm

Garner’s dline hasnt shown much!!

Dawg-Gawn

October 10th, 2012
2:36 pm

@7576DAWG:

You missed the point the 2013 recruiting class was deeper with talented players than the 2012 class therefore UGA was blessed with the ability to have 9 EE out of the 2013 class!

I am glad you’re a Dawg fan but please stop the negative bashing of the UGA coaches when you seemed to be confused… trust UGA coaching staff they are good at what they do.

This 2013 recruiting class looks to be the best ever class in the history of UGA football!

“Sometimes we are so busy adding up our troubles that we forget to count our blessings”

“Stick with Richt”

“BELIEVE” in the “G”

Brian Wilson

October 10th, 2012
2:38 pm

not beating a team with more than 9 wins since 2006

Is this true?

Neutral

October 10th, 2012
3:46 pm

Go Dawgs!!!!!

Neutral

October 10th, 2012
4:00 pm

JB,
I’m so tired of hearing about SC’s incredibly tough schedule. We play the EXACT same 6 teams in the East. Our 2 West teams are a lousy Auburn team and a mediocre Ole Miss. SC plays a lousy Arkansas team and a LSU team that may finish behind Ole Miss when the season is over. lSU has yet to play a good game this season and has lost a gazillion players. Don’t forget that UGa had their schedule in place and things changed due to new conference teams.
UGa was scheduled to play the winners of the last 3 national championships this season ie. Auburn and Bama X2.

Neutral

October 10th, 2012
4:48 pm

Has anyone noticed that we already have 2 (4-star) DE who are both 2-3 inches taller and faster? We also have commitments from several 4-star LBs who are much faster and about the same size as this dude. Throw in our 4 and 5 star DEs from the past 2 recruiting classes and it tells me why UGa wasn’t beating his door down to give him an offer in the middle of his unior year in HS. I’m 100% behind our coaches on this one and I have the exact same thoughts on the DT who committed to SC today. Good grief folks, we have the top 2 DT in the nation 350+pounds each considering UGa so why would we use a scholarship for a guy who plans to play at 290 pounds and is the 3 or 4th best DT in GA. Quit bashing the coaches on recruiting when you don’t have a clue
as to the reasons we don’t make early offers to some kids.

BamaDAWG

October 10th, 2012
4:52 pm

Bottom line is this…

If you continue to do the same things you always did, you will get the same results you always got!

We don’t offer the #5 prospect in the nation. Let another 4* DE who WANTED to commit to UGA (but we don’t have a place for him) and he signs with SC.

What happened to Richt keeping a fence around the state and keeping the best recruits at home? And get off Garner and Bobo and everyone else…the bottom line is that ALL OF THIS FALLS IN THE HEAD COACH!!! That is why he is making $3 million a year!

Forget Faith in Richt! Give me a coach who looks like he gives a crap instead of one who appears to be bored to death every time the camera pans around to him!

Richt would be a great coach in the ACC and maybe he should be at Tech! But this is the SEC and he has PROVEN year end and year out that he is not up to the job! With the talent we have, if they had a coaching staff there to coach them up…UGA would be a hell of a team and one that the top opponents would fear! And they don’t! Maybe if he concentrated on getting in their butts when they mess up like Saban does instead of hugging them every time they get their butts kicked liked Saturday…maybe I could say we could get somewhere. But CMR has PROVEN he cannot make a tough decision, beat the best teams IN OUR OWN CONFERENCE, much less the country and getting out coached and out recruited at every turn!

If Garrity can’t step up and make a change, then maybe he needs to go too! I am not happy winning 10 games a year versus INFERIOR competition and losing 2-4 games a year to better teams! When you become satisfied, improvement stops! And that is where UGA is…look at Perno and the sad state of the baseball stadium. Yet, Garrity fires the gymnastics coach for finishing in the Top 20 every year (which I agreed with because you could see the job wasn’t getting done)! But come on! Looks like our AD is as soft hearted as Richt! He is getting paid $3 million a year to be a great COACH, not a great GUY!

Time to make a lot of changes!

Dawg-Gawn

October 10th, 2012
5:27 pm

“When God measures a man, He puts the tape around the heart instead of the head”

…. the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart. ~ 1 Samuel 16:7

“Stick with Richt”

“BELIEVE” in the “G”

AObserver

October 10th, 2012
6:00 pm

The same thing every year. UGA does not know how to recruit. What is happening in Milton happen in Powder Springs. Rory Anderson, Darius English, Kenyan Drake. What South Carolina has been doing to UGA and their so called elite talent is unbelievable. Last weekend game was just plain embarrassing. But you reap what you sow. These kids don’t want to play on a losing team anyway.

Bill Bash

October 10th, 2012
6:03 pm

That touch down Rory Anderson scored must have hurt. Especially knowing UGA did not recruit him. Spurrier owns UGA and he takes the best talent out of GA.

JRW7

October 10th, 2012
7:24 pm

Something’s wrong at UGA, Carl Lawson says he was a big DAWGS fan and CMR and UGA did not even recruit him, FIRE CMR!!!

JRW7

October 10th, 2012
7:30 pm

I know what’s wrong at UGA, it’s CMR, he can’t seem to beat the ranked teams, but he pads his stats with cupcake wins every year. FIRE CMR NOW!!!!

MadDAWG

October 10th, 2012
10:47 pm

GA native players that hurt us or will hurt us next year
* Chaz Sutton
* Connor Shaw
* Rory Anderson
+ Darius English
+ Rico McWilliams
Sharrod Golightly
* T.J. Holloman
* Kenny Miles
+ Brison Williams
+ Mike Davis
+ T.J. Gurley
+ Chaz Elder
Nick St. Germain
Chris Moody
Kane Whitehurst
Kyle Harris
DeAngelo Smith
Davis Moore
Marcquis Roberts
Kyle Madden
Mason Harris
Chaun Gresham
Kadetrix Marcus
Kyle Fleetwood
Cedrick Cooper

Get real people.

October 11th, 2012
9:39 am

Some of you mark richt haters make me laugh. A couple of kids that commit to ole miss and wake forest say that uga didnt offer them and suddenly UGA’s staff has no clue? The Lawson kid is good but, as the article states, EVERYONE was late on him. Plus thats not a position of need in the ‘13 class. Get a life, idiots.

Get real people.

October 11th, 2012
9:42 am

And another thing- you tards are contradicting yourselves. You say CMR has recruited tons of talent but cant coach, then in your next post you say he has no idea how to evaluate talent because he doesn’t sign a certain kid. Which is it?

THWGY

October 19th, 2012
7:08 am

So much for Richt locking down the state of Georgia…

What’s up with that? Guess he’d rather spend his time out on Mission in Central America than doing his job here at home…