Want a daily lap through Georgia football recruiting? That’s what the Intel will bring at least five days a week. We’ll cover the news and which way this 4-star or 5-star might lean and add a dab of perspective to help fans figure out what it all means.
SAN ANTONIO, Texas — Chalk up Day 6 in Texas. That means the notebook runneth over with things absorbed during the stay.
Georgia has nine commitments in town for the U.S. Army All-American Bowl this week. That game kicks off at 1 p.m. on Saturday on NBC.
It’s been quite a week. We’ve learned a lot about how close UGA came on near 5-star misses like Cam Akers and Walker Little plus we’ve already learned a new name that may or may not one day go up on the commitment board.
The Georgia football recruiting universe just keeps on spinning. USC commitment Jamyest Williams told DawgNation that he will take only one other visit and that’s to UGA. That will be one to watch.
Williams grew up in Athens and was a big Georgia fan. He’s also seen a consistent recruiting push from Kirby Smart, Mel Tucker and all the UGA commits in his class.
But I know what you’re thinking by now. This isn’t a recap post here. This is everything that’s going on that keeps me from sharing all this other stuff I’ve learned this week about Georgia and the Class of 2017 recruiting class.
I’m just going to tick it off. But first, a little advance notice.
— Jeff Sentell (@jeffsentell) January 6, 2017
Sound good? OK. Now let’s get started on all of this.
23 more things I’ve learned in Texas
- UGA QB signee Jake Fromm got his roommate situation figured out this week. He’ll room with Charlie Woerner. I’m betting that dorm will soon lead the team in camouflage in the closet.
- Fromm will fly back on Sunday and drive immediately to Athens. Snow? He’s probably got the one truck in the class that can handle anything. That truck actually has its own Twitter account, too.
- Georgia has nine commits on the East team. Michigan has four. Clemson, FSU and Ohio State are all tied for third place with three apiece. Do that math. The Bulldogs have more two commits on that roster than the combined total from second and third place.
- Georgia also leads with nine commits across both rosters. Ohio State is next with eight. Oklahoma has seven. Alabama has five. That gives Georgia a total of 14 commitments across the U.S. Army and Under Armour All-American Games.
- 4-star OT Andrew Thomas will get a ratings bump after this week. I can make the case — and I’ve seen it elsewhere that he could be one of the Top 2 overall offensive linemen on the East team along with Oklahoma commit Creed Humphrey. Humphrey is a flippin’ man. The man he goes about his business in the trenches and the balance, body control and footwork he displays is quite rare.
- That Sunday will be a big first day in Athens. That’s when the early enrollees will all celebrate Monty Rice’s birthday. There is a cake planned and everything.
- If Jake Fromm doesn’t start for the East on Saturday, then the fix is in. He’s the smoothest operator out of all the options. The Houston County alum has the best command of the offense and hasn’t had any issues bobbling snaps. That’s an impressive feat given all the skills that Alabama signee Tua Tagovailoa has flashed all week in drills.
— Josh Helmholdt (@JoshHelmholdt) January 5, 2017
- The UGA commit that will most likely challenge for their fifth star this week has to be D’Andre Swift in my mind. He’s had a great week in a backfield with 5-star RB Cam Akers. Fromm isn’t far behind in that 5-star chase.
— JakefromStateFromm (@FrommJake) January 4, 2017
- The boys think the U.S. Army All-American UGA contingent will swell to 10 commitments by the end of this week. I don’t see that. Yet. But they are a confident bunch.
- The same could be said for UGA 4-star OT D’Antne Demery. He’s also had a very good week. Demery and Thomas have both been so good that I’ll fess up and admit that I’ve been guilty of hasty judgment. I’m sticking with the fact that junior college signee D’Marcus Hayes will be a starter at one of the tackle spots. He has to because of his age and experience level.
- I think that other starting offensive tackle spot is going to be a 3-way knuckle-dragger between Demery, Thomas and 5-star Isaiah Wilson. That situation is complicated by the fact they will all arrive in the summer. (Disclaimer: I do realize that there are current veteran UGA reserves on campus that will also vie for those starting jobs, too.)
- I won’t go into details here but you would be stunned at the level of kindness and hospitality that the family of one UGA commit displayed here this week. It went a Jacob Eason bomb well past the point of point of concern anyone might expect them to display. They even reached out to help a fellow U.S. Army All-American family with a son that wasn’t even going to go to Georgia.
- This notebook is full. I’m telling you. Did you know that 4-star OG Netori Johnson ran the anchor leg of a hot dog eating relay race for the East team? He won. That poor hot dog never had a chance.
- Swift was in the sit-up challenge for the East team. He banged out approximately 60-plus reps in about a minute to take that competition. He came in this week at 5-foot-9 and 222 pounds. I think that 140 of that might be in his lower body. Just a massive trunk and lower frame.
- All the U.S. Army All-Americans received a ton on swag. One of the items in their haul was a custom San Antonio Spurs jersey with their name on it. Check out the look for UGA 4-star LB commit Nate McBride.
Adidas with another hook up! James harden's rat don't drop till sat. And custom spurts jersey pic.twitter.com/1AYVxiQza6
— nate mcbride (@nmcbride13) January 5, 2017
- UGA commits Tray Bishop, Demery, Johnson, McBride, Swift and Thomas all have plenty of official visits left to take but aren’t taking any. It is a committed thing. It is almost to the point where any committed guys that go visit elsewhere in January will look a bit suspect. The guys won’t throw shade on them or anything, but it will seem out of place.
- 5-star DT Aubrey Solomon’s decision to me seems like an Alabama vs. Georgia thing and it is closer than he is letting on. I feel that the Alabama visit is his last visit and that’s the last great impression he has in his mind. I mean the guy did eat breakfast next to Nick Saban at a crowded table. But there’s still a long way to go here.
- I wrote about TD Slaton earlier this week, but I’m not so sure what happens with that guy. Georgia is pushing it with its numbers in this class. I’d be absolutely stunned if they swapped Slaton for anyone currently in the class. From a player evaluation standpoint, there’s no way any of the current OL commits go anywhere. That would be madness. I’m also not sure they can add another OL to the class. Could the fit be as a DT? Maybe. Maybe he can be Aubrey Solomon insurance if that decision is known by Feb. 1. Bottom line: I just don’t see the nation’s No. 3 OG in the class at UGA right now. The numbers just don’t add up with the needs at other positions.
- 5-star safety Richard LeCounte III is the best defensive player for the East. Iowa DE commit AJ Epenesa is the only other guy who has consistently made the same level of impact at practices. LeCounte has even gotten some looks in the red zone on offense in the backfield.
— Josh Helmholdt (@JoshHelmholdt) January 5, 2017
- 4-star WR Jeremiah Holloman had a tremendous practice day on Thursday. It was his best day of the week so far. If we’re looking for the first thing he has to get better at when he enrolls early in Athens, I think he has to get become more natural at catching the ball. Consistently catching the ball with ease. That said, the high point ball he went up and got against LeCounte in a drill on Thursday was a gem.
— Jake Reuse (@ReuseRecruiting) January 5, 2017
- Holloman also plans on wearing No. 9 at UGA. LeCounte’s current pick is No. 2. Swift will get No. 7. McBride might not be able to get No. 13 his first year because of a conflict. Fromm will wear No. 11.
- Swift has roomed with LeCounte this week in Texas. That’s an interesting pairing of two of the elite players in the class. Swift shared a funny story that makes perfect sense. He’s noticed that LeCounte talks in his sleep sometimes. That’s proof positive that the 5-star really never stops talking.
- And last but not least I’ve learned the UGA walk-on kicker Rodrigo Blankenship has without a doubt earned a lion’s share of respect by handling the difficult mess he has been unwillingly subjected to with nothing but class. He’s been thrust into a situation that equates to a 65-yard field goal in the snow in his world. And The Kicker absolutely nailed the right way to handle it with this tweet. His Dad is taking a lot of heat on this one, but give that man some respect for the son he’s raised in this hateful world and entitled athletic culture we live in.
— Rodrigo Blankenship (@RodTheKicker3) January 6, 2017