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The three prospects Georgia needs to land to have an epic early signing day
The early signing period begins on Wednesday, and it will be a very busy day on the recruiting front for Georgia. The Bulldogs enter the day with the No. 2 signing class in the country, with four 5-stars committed to them already. And that’s before 5-star prospects like Trey Sanders, Nakobe Dean and Evan Neal make their announcements.
Georgia is trying to catch Alabama, while also restocking its roster. And given the massive Justin Fields news, we believe there are three recruits Georgia absolutely has to sign Wednesday for it to be a wildly successful day:
Trey Sanders, 5-star running back: Sanders is the No. 1 running back in the country and the No. 5 player in the 2019 class. Sanders is considering the Bulldogs, as Georgia has made a very strong impression on him. But he is also considering Alabama and Florida. Landing Sanders isn’t just important to Georgia’s running back depth, but signing him will also keep him away from both the Crimson Tide and the Gators. Things have been trending well for Georgia with Sanders, and we think the Bulldogs land him. DawgNation will be on hand to cover his announcement, which is set for 1:20 p.m. ET.
Nakobe Dean, 5-star linebacker: Like Sanders, Dean is the No. 1 player at his position in the country. Also like Sanders, Dean is considering the Bulldogs, Alabama and another SEC school (Ole Miss instead of Florida). Georgia’s linebacker play needs to get better, and getting Dean would be a big addition to Georgia’s current crop. The Bulldogs already have commitments from Trezmen Marshall and Rian Davis, but keeping Dean from Alabama would be another big win. Dean will announce his commitment at 2 p.m. ET on Wednesday and DawgNation will be on hand to cover his announcement as well.
Quarterback X: So it seems that with the Justin Fields news, the Bulldogs are going to need another quarterback. Georgia already has a commitment in John Rhys Plumlee, but Georgia still needs one more. Dillon Gabriel, a 3-star quarterback from Hawaii, will announce his decision on Wednesday. He is down to the Bulldogs, USC and UCF. There’s also Zach Calzada, who is currently a Texas A&M commit but some in the recruiting industry think he could flip to Georgia. At the end of the day, Georgia needs to land at least one of these guys.
Below is a comprehensive list of Georgia’s recruiting targets, commitments and signees. Make sure to follow along with DawgNation all the news surrounding Georgia.
Georgia football recruiting targets and announcement times:
Below is a list of Georgia’s recruiting targets that are expected to sign and announce on Wednesday. Jadon Haselwood, the No. 4 player in the country and the No. 1 wide receiver, will publicly announce his commitment on Jan. 5. The same goes for 4-star cornerback Tyrique Stevenson, who is the No. 38 player in the country. Gabriel will also sign on Wednesday, but a time is not yet known.
Zach Calzada, 3-star quarterback, 9:30 a.m. ET: Calzada is a name to watch for Georgia fans interested in quarterback recruiting. He is from Buford, Ga., and played at Lanier High School. He is the No. 18 pro-style quarterback in the country. With news swirling about Justin Fields, this is a name Georgia fans should be watching for.
Noah Cain, 4-star running back, 11:05 a.m. ET: Cain is the No. 7 running back in the country and played at IMG Academy. Georgia has been recruiting him heavily but is also battling Penn State and Texas for his services.
Trey Sanders, 5-star running back, 1:20 p.m. ET: Sanders is the nation’s No. 1 running back and will announce his decision from Port St. Joe, Fla. DawgNation will be live on hand to broadcast the announcement. It is believed that Georgia, Alabama and Florida are the lead contenders for Sanders’ services.
Nakobe Dean, 5-star linebacker, 2:00 p.m. ET: Dean is the nation’s top inside linebacker and DawgNation will also be covering his announcement from Horn Lake, Miss. Much like Sanders, this is widely believed to be a Georgia-Alabama battle, though Ole Miss is also a contender.
Evan Neal, 5-star offensive tackle, 2:45 p.m. ET: Neal — who was teammates at IMG Academy with Sanders, Cain and Nolan Smith — is the No. 20 ranked player in the country and No. 5 offensive tackle. He will be deciding between Alabama, Georgia and Miami.
Georgia football commitments:
These players are the ones who are committed to Georgia but have not yet signed. Wednesday is the first day that they can sign and officially join the Georgia football team.
- Nolan Smith, 5-star defensive end, Bradenton, Fla., No. 1 player in the country per 247Sports Composite rating
- Travon Walker, 5-star defensive tackle, Thomaston, Ga., No. 24 player in the country per 247Sports Composite rating
- Dominick Blaylock, 5-star wide receiver, Marietta, Ga., No. 34 player in the country
- Lewis Cine, 4-star safety, Cedar Hill, Tex., No. 66 player in the country
- Rian Davis, 4-star linebacker, Apopka, Fla., No. 90 player in the country
- Trezmen Marshall, 4-star linebacker, Homerville, Ga., No. 122 player in the country
- Bill Norton, 4-star defensive end, Memphis, Tenn., No. 129 player in the country
- Xavier Truss, 4-star offensive tackle, Warwick, RI., No. 139 player in the country
- Kenny McIntosh, 4-star running back, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., No. 179 player in the country
- Ryland Goede, 4-star tight end, Acworth, Ga., No. 196 player in the country
- Makiya Tongue, 4-star athlete, Baton Rouge, La., No. 209 player in the country
- Warren McClendon, 4-star offensive tackle, Brunswick, Ga., No. 235 player in the country
- John Rhys Plumlee, 4-star quarterback, Hattiesburg, Miss., No. 265 player in the country
- Zion Logue, 4-star defensive tackle, Lebanon, Tenn., No. 344 player in the country
- Tymon Mitchell, 3-star defensive tackle, Nashville, Tenn., No. 418 player in the country
Georgia football 2019 signees already enrolled
These four players are already at Georgia and have begun practicing with the team.
- Clay Webb, 5-star center, Oxford, Ala., No. 22 player in the country per 247Sports Composite rating
- Jermaine Johnson, 4-star outside linebacker, No. 1 JUCO player in the country per 247Sports Composite rating
- DJ Daniel, 4-star cornerback, No. 2 JUCO player in the country
- Tramel Walthour, No. 40 JUCO player in the country
The latest on Justin Fields
On Tuesday night, Justin Fields’ name was added to the NCAA Transfer Portal. This does not mean that he has officially left yet, or that he can’t return to Georgia. It simply means that he is exploring the possibility of transferring, and that he can be contacted by other coaches. Georgia tight Luke Ford has also added his name to the Transfer Portal, but on Monday, Kirby Smart said that he expects Ford to be back with the team.
DawgNation has confirmed that Fields spoke with the Georgia coaching staff about the possibility of transferring. As for what bit of news Georgia fans can expect on the Fields front, Smart will meet with the media Wednesday. He will no doubt be asked about the possibility of his transfer status. Georgia again had practice, but it was closed to the media on Tuesday, so it is unknown if Fields was there. Georgia’s practice will be open to the media Wednesday as well.
On Wednesday, DawgNation’s Mike Griffith caught up with ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit. The College GameDay analyst said the news of Fields’ potential transfer did not shock him.
“I wondered how Justin Fields was doing behind the scenes,” Herbsteit said. “I haven’t spoken with him, I don’t know specifically what went on behind the situation. But I’m not surprised — I’m more surprised he signed at Georgia than I am he’s transferring.”
Below, you can see DawgNation’s comprehensive coverage of the Fields situation.
Justin Fields coverage from around DawgNation
Two former Bulldogs named Pro Bowlers
The NFL Pro Bowl rosters were announced Tuesday night and two former Bulldogs made were honored. Defensive tackle Geno Atkins was Georgia’s lone representative on the AFC team, while running back Todd Gurley made the NFC squad.
This will be Atkins’ seventh Pro Bowl appearance as he continues to build a hall of fame legacy. He is also the lone Cincinnati Bengal to make the team. Atkins has 10.0 sacks on the season, making it the third time in his career that he has racked up double-digit sacks.
Gurley meanwhile has been a touchdown-scoring machine, as he’s found the endzone 21 times this season. This will be Gurley’s third Pro Bowl appearance. Should the Los Angeles Rams continue to win and advance to the Super Bowl, Gurley may not play in the game.
Of course it’s not likely that these are the only two representatives from Georgia, as a number of players will probably drop out of the game or will be unable to participate. That will open up spots for the likes of Nick Chubb and Roquan Smith. This year’s Pro Bowl will be played in Orlando on Jan. 27.
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