Kirby Smart ‘excited’ about Brock Vandagriff, the future of the Georgia quarterback position
Wednesday was a big day for 5-star quarterback signee Brock Vandagriff. Sure he signed with Georgia just over 15 minutes from Sanford Stadium as the centerpiece for Georgia’s No. 3 recruiting class.
But he also took his last high school final, officially making the end of his high school academic career. The next test he takes will be a college one, located in Athens.
Vandagriff though does still have some high school football left in his time at Prince Avenue Christian, as the nation’s No. 14 overall recruit has his team in the state semifinals. A win on Friday over Wesleyan would send Vandagriff and his team to the state title.
Wednesday also marked the first time that Smart could publicly comment on Vandagriff as he submitted his Letter of Intent on the day, and the Bulldogs officially announced his addition with much fanfare at 1:45 p.m.
— Georgia Football (@GeorgiaFootball) December 16, 2020
“As one chapter ends, another begins as I am excited to become an official Bulldog today,” Vandagriff said in a ceremony at his school. “Thank you all for coming out and Go Dawgs.”
Like so many in the Georgia fan base, Smart is excited about what Vandagriff brings to the table.
“He wanted an opportunity to play close to home,” Smart said. “He wanted an opportunity to play near his family. He wants to be able to play in front of them. I’m excited for what he can do. He’s been a leader for his program. He’s still in the playoffs. He’s been productive. We’re excited to see what he can bring to the University of Georgia.”
Vandagriff is from Bogart, Ga., and he was at one point an Oklahoma quarterback commit. That should speak to how gifted Vandagriff is, as Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley does not miss on quarterbacks.
But Vandagriff backed off that pledge on Jan. 1 of 2020, in part because he wanted to be close to his parents. Which is why later in January he committed to the Bulldogs.
Vandagriff quickly went work as an advocate for the Georgia program, most notably with 5-star offensive tackle Amarius Mims who Georgia also signed on Saturday. Vandagriff was instrumental in Georgia signing yet another elite recruiting class, as the Bulldogs have the No. 3 recruiting class in the 247Sports Composite rankings.
Old boots, new dirt… 🌊🌊 https://t.co/TKtsDIykdy
— Brock 🌊 (@BrockVandagriff) December 16, 2020
He wanted to build a championship contender at Georgia, something Smart also wants out of his team and quarterbacks.
“They want the opportunity to win championships,” Smart said of quarterbacks at Georiga. “You putting yourself in the conversation of being able to win championships is always going to put you at the forefront of every quarterback in the country’s list. When they start talking about where I want to go, I want to go win a championship.”
Georgia has had a checkered history with quarterbacks under Smart. The Georgia head coach has had no problem getting talented signal-callers to Athens. Since he arrived in December of 2015, Smart has now added four quarterbacks who were 5-star Composite quarterbacks. That doesn’t include Jake Fromm or Jamie Newman either.
But the Bulldogs haven’t seemly gotten the most out of those quarterbacks unless you’re willing to count the three-game sample-size of JT Daniels.
One of the most consistent knocks against Smart has been the Justin Fields situation, as he seems poised to lead Ohio State to a second-straight College Football Playoff appearance, while Georgia will miss out again. ‘How could Smart not see Fields’ obvious dual-threat talents and play him?’ is a question fans and critics have asked countless times in the past two seasons.
Well, Vandagriff has some of those similar attributes as he’s ranked as the No. 2 dual-threat quarterback in the class.
“He’s a really good athlete. He’s tough. He’s a competitor,” Smart said. “He grew up playing the game. [He’s] not afraid to take a hit, to deliver a blow. One of the first stories I heard about him when I got here was how he covered kickoffs maybe in the eighth or nineth grade and wasn’t afraid to hit people.
“When you look at a quarterback nowadays, that’s one of the things you have to say and that’s the new deal when you look across the NFL. The arm angle, the ability to have mobility to escape—the game has changed.”
He showed his athletic ability last week in a win over defending state champion Eagles Landing as Vandagriff added two rushing touchdowns in short-yardage situations. He now has 15 rushing touchdowns on the season.
He’s also got a hand-cannon for an arm. As a senior, he’s thrown for 41 touchdowns while completing 71 percent of his pass attempts.
How soon Vandagriff sees the field depends on what Daniels decides to do following the 2020 season. But there’s little question that Vandagriff is the future of the position for the Georgia football program.
Georgia quarterback Brock Vandagriff Senior highlights
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- David Daniel: Georgia’s first commit of the 2021 class is now a Bulldog
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