Archive for the ‘Future Star’ Category

Juwaan Williams: Notre Dame will get first official visit from Tucker QB

One of Georgia’s top “athlete” prospects will take an official visit to Notre Dame this weekend.

WR-DB Juwaan Williams will visit Notre Dame this weekend (AJC)

WR-DB Juwaan Williams will take an official visit to Notre Dame this weekend (AJC)

It will be the first of five official visits for Juwaan Williams, who was the quarterback for Tucker High School’s state championship team last season. The 6-foot-1, 180-pounder is being recruited by most schools at WR.

“I’m anxious; this will be the first official visit of my life,” Williams told the AJC. “I’m anxious to see what’s out there, and what Notre Dame has to offer.”

What does Williams like about Notre Dame’s football team? “Mostly, the type of offense they run. From watching the first few games, you can tell they pass the ball a lot. And they can score in bunches.

“I can see myself fitting in as another weapon the quarterback can use. I can go in motion or do some quick outs. They can get me something quick to get my hands on and get up the field.”

It will be a long travel weekend for …

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Kasey Gaines: Penn State beats out Harvard for DB

Kasey Gaines, who made the signature play during Grayson High School’s state championship season, committed to Penn State on Wednesday.

Penn State DB commit Kasey Gaines (GraysonRamsFootball.com)

Penn State DB commit Kasey Gaines (GraysonRamsFootball.com)

The 5-foot-11, 160-pound cornerback committed to Penn State over Harvard, while also considering Miami of Ohio. Gaines is one of six Grayson seniors committed to a D1 school, led by national No. 1-ranked prospect Robert Nkemdiche (Clemson).

“I just thought it would be a great opportunity,” Gaines said. “I love the coaches, and I thought it would be awesome to be a part of the Penn State tradition up there.”

What about all the NCAA penalties and probation for Penn State? Among other things, the Nittany Lions have a four-year bowl ban. Gaines said he reviewed the situation, and felt like Penn State was too good to pass up.

“I really didn’t think of the NCAA stuff as a big deal,” Gaines said. “Obviously, no one wants to go through anything like that. But I just think it’s a great …

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Quinton Stephens: 3-star commits to Georgia Tech over Clemson

Georgia Tech-bound Quinton Stephens with his parents

Georgia Tech-bound Quinton Stephens with his parents

Georgia Tech added a little hometown flavor to its 2013 basketball recruiting class.

Quinton Stephens, a 6-foot-9, 180-pound swingman from Marist high school, committed to Georgia Tech over Clemson, Tennessee and Miami on Sunday. He made the decision at the conclusion of his official visit with the Yellow Jackets on Sunday.

“I went to Clemson the previous week and really enjoyed it,” Stephens told the AJC. “But coming here [to Georgia Tech], it really stood out to me that it was a great place. I fit in really well with the players and coaches. And just the atmosphere and all around … it really was a good fit for all the things I was looking for.”

Stephens liked Georgia Tech so much that he went ahead and immediately canceled his upcoming recruiting trips to Miami and Tennessee.

“I just felt like I had no reason to prolong the process if I really felt like Georgia Tech was the place for me,” Stephens said. “I mean, it would …

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INSIDER: Auburn recruits react to 0-2 start

What do Auburn recruits think of the team’s 0-2 start?

They’d like for Auburn to have more wins, of course, but there doesn’t seem to be anywhere near the same type of widespread panic and hotseat rumors like that were swirling around UGA last year after a similar 0-2 start. “We’ll be fine” seems to be general sentiment at Auburn.

Perhaps no out-of-state school recruits the state of Georgia as well as Auburn, which has 17 commits for its 2013 class, including five from the state (without counting 5-star transplant Reuben Foster).

We asked the Auburn recruits simply what they thought about 0-2:

  • LB Jarrad Davis, Camden County: “It’s definitely a rocky start for Auburn, but it is what it is. Every good program, they go through a rough time. They’re struggling at the beginning of the season, but I’m looking forward to them bouncing back and playing some real football. I think they’ll be good.” Davis said he hasn’t talked to any other school and doesn’t have any plans to do so.
  • P …

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Robert Nkemdiche’s mother “unhappy” with Clemson

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The mother of Robert Nkemdiche, the nation’s No. 1-ranked prospect, told ESPN The Magazine that she is “unhappy with Clemson.”

The 6-foot-5, 280-pound defensive end from Grayson High School committed to Clemson last June.

Robert’s mother, Beverly Nkemdiche, resides in Nigeria and works in politics as a state legislator. When Beverly visited with her son over the summer, she told ESPN she was surprised how serious Robert’s commitment to Clemson was being reported:

“His decision is not final,” she says. “He’s just a teenager, and people are forgetting that. We had never discussed Clemson, and I am unhappy with Clemson. I’m not there, so I don’t know for certain, but I feel like Robert was pressured into this decision.”

One of the main reasons that Nkemdiche committed to Clemson because at least three of his Grayson teammates will be playing for the Tigers next season, including his best friend …

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NCAA investigating Tony Parker for potential recruiting violations, per report (UPDATED)

The NCAA is investigating for potential recruiting violations involving Tony Parker, according to Scout.com’s UCLA website.

Parker was the AJC’s Mr. Basketball from Miller Grove High School who signed last April with UCLA over offers from UGA, Ohio State, Kansas, and Memphis.

On Sunday night, Parker’s high school coach told the AJC he was aware of the report, and also stated that he had not been contacted by the NCAA.

Tony Parker, who signed with UCLA over UGA, among others, is being investigated by the NCAA for potential recruiting violations, according to Scout.com. Parker cited UCLA's hiring of his longtime AAU coach -- permissible under NCAA rules -- as a major reason he picked the Bruins (AJC photo/Curtis Compton)

Tony Parker, who signed with UCLA over UGA, among others, is being investigated by the NCAA for potential recruiting violations, according to Scout.com. Parker cited UCLA's hiring of his longtime AAU coach — permissible under NCAA rules — as a major reason he picked the Bruins (AJC photo/Curtis Compton)

“Of course, I was caught off guard by this,” Miller Grove’s Sharman White said. “I think it’s the NCAA just doing what they do. If they’ve got any suspicions, I don’t know … I can’t really go on the record and say anything.

“I mean, you hear about things like …

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QB DeShaun Watson is “85 percent committed” to Clemson

Who is the state of Georgia’s top college football prospect for 2014?

One of the top candidates is DeShaun Watson, an electrifying QB from Gainesville High School who committed to Clemson over 10 early football scholarship offers last season as a sophomore.

The 6-foot-3, 195-pound Watson will be on display when Gainesville plays West Forsyth in a game that will be televised at 7:30 p.m. Thursday on WSB-TV 2.2 and Me-TV.

After landing the state's No. 1 prospect this year with Robert Nkemdiche, Clemson also has secured one of the state's best for 2014 in QB DeShaun Watson of Gainesville (AP)

A Georgia recruiting trophy? After landing the state's No. 1 prospect this year with Robert Nkemdiche, Clemson also has secured one of the state's best for 2014 in QB DeShaun Watson of Gainesville (AP)

“He’s excellent, he may be the best quarterback I’ve ever seen,” West Forsyth coach Frank Hepler said “I watched him last week against Creekview, and he’s much bigger than I thought he would be.  He’s a tremendous talent. “I saw a lot of great quarterbacks down in Florida through my years, and then over the years in Georgia I’ve seen some good ones. DeShaun …

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Robert Nkemdiche: The pressures of being No. 1

Robert Nkemdiche, the nation’s No. 1 overall college prospect, was clearly the star of the Corky Kell luncheon at the Georgia Dome on Wednesday.

When the 6-foot-5, 270-pound defensive end from Grayson High School entered the Dome, he was swarmed by the media, event staff, players from other teams and their parents, and opposing coaches. All in the day’s work for the 5-star defender.

“A lot of my coaches help me stay humble, they do a great job,” Nkemdiche said. “And I practice being humble. Some people try to be humble but I practice being humble. A lot of it also has to do with my spirituality. I’m a big Christian, and I want to glorify God.”

To Robert’s credit, as he was pulled in every which way but loose on Wednesday, he was happy to give everybody who asked a few minutes of his time.

Grayson’s athletics director stood a few feet away as Nkemdiche made the rounds on Wednesday, helping him facilitate through the time demands. Grayson coach Mickey Conn told the AJC …

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Overzealous “UGA fan” calls recruit about his commitment status with Bulldogs

A person claiming to be a UGA fan recently called one of the team’s top football recruits to clarify the status of his commitment to the Bulldogs.

The ill-advised contact between the “fan” and the prospect, and the story behind it, instantly went viral on Twitter, and ignited heated discussions on a UGA team website and Rivals.com’s national message boards.  It also created some speculation that UGA may have to report an NCAA secondary violation — even though UGA appeared to have nothing to do with the phone call, and the unidentified person claiming to be a UGA fan may be a fan of another school.

An NCAA spokesperson told the AJC on Monday that it did not have enough information to “speculate about the situation” and how it applied to the rulebook, and recommended contacting UGA. Jim Booz, who works in compliance at UGA, said Monday he was aware of the situation and said that no NCAA secondary violation had occurred. “Based on the information at this time, there’s not enough …

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Alabama high school officials clear Reuben Foster’s transfer (UPDATED)

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)

Reuben Foster, who is ranked as the nation’s No. 2 football recruit, has been cleared to play for Auburn High School this season and his transfer from Troup High in LaGrange was within the rules of the Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA), Auburn City Schools said in news release on Thursday.

“We are lovely, yes we are,” his mother, Anita Paige, told the AJC exclusively on Thursday. “I wasn’t worried about Reuben being able to play because I know we didn’t do anything wrong.”

Earlier in the week, there was confusion as to whether the 5-star linebacker and his mother were interviewing with officials from the AHSAA or NCAA. After the AJC received a tip from a source that requested anonymity on Monday morning, the AJC asked Paige specifically if she and her son were meeting with the NCAA later in the day Monday. She responded, “Yes, how did you know?”

Paige was also asked specifically …

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