Not much happening on the UGA sports front for a few days, in deference to spring-semester final exams. But a couple of things caught my attention Monday:
A YOUNG RECRUIT: Wow, Andy Landers must really be impressed with Erika Ford, the Chattahoochee High sophomore — sophomore! – whom Georgia’s women’s basketball program has offered a scholarship and who has verbally committed to accept it when she finishes high school. Apparently she’ll be a Lady Bulldog starting in the 2011-12 season — after two more years at Chattahoochee.
Best I can tell, she is the first high school sophomore commit in the history of Georgia’s women’s hoops program.
“She’s always wanted to be a Bulldog, so for her it was an easy choice,” Chattahoochee coach Eric Herrick said Monday.
Ford, a 16-year-old 5-foot-9 shooting guard, echoed her coach’s words and said “there was no reason to wait” on committing to the Lady Bulldogs. She said she knew the first time she stepped on the UGA campus that was the place for her. She said Georgia offered her a scholarship around Christmas. And by pledging now to accept it, she said, she can focus on having fun and playing basketball the next two years without worrying about recruiting.
“I didn’t want to go through the process for two years,” she said.
Landers, Georgia’s coach, can’t comment on Ford, per NCAA rules. But according to her high school coach, Herrick:
“She’s a phenomenal scorer [an average of 24 points per game as a sophomore, a total of 1,168 points the past two seasons] and a great defender. Her key attribute is her athleticism. She’s a very explosive athlete, very quick. And also a gym rat who likes to get better, likes competition.
“It’s good for her and for us as a team to have [her recruitment] already taken care of. Now she can just go out and play basketball.”
For two more years of high school.
A SLUMPING TEAM: Two weeks ago, Georgia’s baseball team was ranked as high as No. 1 in the nation. Now, it is ranked as low as No. 22.
The Bulldogs dropped to No. 13 in this week’s ESPN/USA Today coaches’ poll –- down from No. 1 two weeks ago and No. 6 last week. The Dogs dropped to No. 14 in the Collegiate Baseball poll, down from last week’s No. 6, and to No. 22 in the Baseball America poll, down from last week’s No. 11.
Hey, that’s what a six-game losing streak will do for you.
Baseball is a streaky game, as you know, and Georgia will try to reverse its recent direction in what’s left of the regular season: a three-game series vs. Vanderbilt in Athens this weekend, a single game vs. Georgia Tech at Turner Field on May 12 and a three-game series at South Carolina May 14-16. Then the SEC tournament.