John Jenkins has heard the rumors and, quite frankly, he’s not too happy about them.
The big nose guard from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, who was one of the most heralded members of Georgia’s 2011 signing class, is presently back home in Meriden, Conn., getting ready to join the Bulldogs this summer. But even up there in what he describes as a very intensely focused environment, he has been hearing the scuttlebutt that an apparent academic snafu had jeopardized his eligibility at UGA.
“Yeah, I don’t know exactly where that came from,” Jenkins said Tuesday. “Everything is good. Everything is straight. I’ll be there in June. All it is is rumors. I don’t know where it starts. Regardless, I’m going to be playing against Boise State and that’s all I’m thinking about right now.”
Jenkins, a 6-foot-4, 360-pound JUCO All-American, is expected to be a big difference maker for the Bulldogs. Along with redshirt sophomore Kwame Geathers, he’s expected to give them the push in the middle of defensive coordinator Todd Grantham’s 3-4 defense they were previously lacking.
Jenkins said he knows he’s being counted on and he is preparing accordingly.
“I’m on Coach T’s [Joe Tereshinski] workout plan, but I’m going beyond that,” he said. “I’m working out three times a day. I’m lifting weights and doing a lot of running and conditioning. I want to be in good shape when I get there. Everybody just needs to chill.”
Just to double-check, I talked to Jenkins’ coach at MGCCC.
“You can go ahead and squash all that,” coach Steve Campbell said. “Of course, each kid has to go through an admissions committee and all that’s going on about right now. But he graduated from here and Big John’s going to be fine. We haven’t had anybody not make it yet.”
Meanwhile, Jenkins said he finds all the rumor and innuendo annoying.
“I get people asking me about this and asking me about that and it’s like people are just predetermining things,” he said. “I’d just say if you don’t see me at Georgia, then you can start worrying. But I’m going to be down there June 3 with my teammates getting ready for Boise State and South Carolina and everybody else.”