Jalen Kimber: The stories you haven’t read yet about the UGA early enrollee

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Jalen Kimber. He's already on campus as a mid-year enrollee at the University of Georgia.

Major Burns. Jalen Kimber.

There may have already been a point sometime this week when those two looked at one another on the UGA campus and just shook their heads.

For those two to both end up in Athens as members of the 2020 signing class at UGA as early enrollees? Let’s just say the odds went long in that opposite direction of all that.

Burns, a Baton Rouge native, was committed to LSU for almost six months prior to a de-commitment on Dec. 11. That was one week before the early signing period. He signed with Georgia that week despite not a single one of those 247Sports “Crystal Balls” pointing to him to do so.

That just adds to the following timeline.

  • Feb. 3, 2019: Commits to Texas A&M
  • March 25, 2019: De-commits from Texas A&M
  • June 6, 2019: Commits to LSU
  • Dec. 11, 2019: De-commits from LSU
  • Dec. 18, 2019: Signs with Georgia
  • Jan. 6, 2019: Enrolls as a mid-year signee at Georgia

The odds for Burns alone have to be placed on the table to consider this tandem story in full. That’s because there was a time 11 months ago where it certainly looked like Kimber was going to commit to Texas A&M.

It makes sense. He’s too special of an athlete for those flagship Texas programs to let him leave the state without a 15-round fight.

The SEC West program had a great shot at Kimber, but then oddly hit the pause button.

Jalen Kimber is already an early enrollee at Georgia. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation)

Jalen Kimber: How UGA swooped in to pull him out of Texas

There’s only so much that needs to come out about this story, but it would be accurate to say Kimber was set to commit to Texas A&M. That was back before he blew up as a recruit and started receiving the big-time national offers like the ones he would get from Alabama and Georgia.

Maybe the Aggies were trying to save more early slots open for nationally-rated corners to come check out College Station. The irony here is that Kimber was a national prospect. An All-American at that.

Yet for some strange reason, he was asked to wait about the same time that Burns committed to play for the Aggies. Kimber felt he was sure about the fit, but A&M was not.

Jalen Kimber had a big hand in helping bring Major Burns to Georgia in the 2020 class. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation)

That opened the door for a school like Georgia to come in and actively recruit Kimber.

“I feel good about all of that now,” Jalen Kimber said. “I’m glad all of that happened and I feel very good about where I am at right now.”

The world will never know if that commitment would have stuck. Especially since Kimber was clearly a national elite recruit from the moment he tested so well at a March Opening regional.

When Kimber chose Georgia, he was an instant recruiting trail advocate for the Bulldogs. He had also gotten to know Burns well while camping with him in Atlanta for the Rivals.com Five-Star Challenge.

“If I was with Texas A&M still then, then I am not telling him to come to Georgia after he de-committed,” Kimber said. “Now we’re together. That is crazy. I think about that all of the time. That situation come have been totally different but now it is kind of the same, but it is not. We’re both now at Georgia.”

It can also be stated that Burns de-committed from the flagship SEC school of his home state because he didn’t feel that fit was mutually the same for both parties as it once was. Especially to reopen his recruitment the week prior to the first day of the early signing period when he planned to enroll early.

It might not seem logical for a long-standing pledge to de-commit from the national championship favorite when the program is in the same city, but that’s what Burns felt lead to do.

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