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Student Sports
Jalen Jordan is already one of the fastest and strongest receivers at IMG Academy.

UGA recruiting: 6-foot-5 WR Jalen Jordan could come home to Georgia

Want a daily lap through UGA football recruiting? That’s what the Intel will bring at least five days a week. We’ll cover the news and which way an elite prospect like Jalen Jordan or Dameon Pierce might lean plus add some perspective to help fans figure out what it all means.

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Jalen Jordan has no stars. He now has just five offers.

Yet he’s also the biggest and perhaps also the fastest receiver at IMG Academy. It is not supposed to work that way in 2017.

The Alpha recruits go there to compete against their peers every day. Guys don’t go down to the palatial campus in sunny South Florida to get noticed.

He can also clock a 4.45 laser time in the 40. His IMG teammates call him “Megatron.” That’s a nod to the unstoppable Transformer uber-villain and former NFL All-Everything and Madden cover boy Calvin Johnson.

Jalen Jordan
Jalen Jordan just picked up a big offer from Georgia. (Student Sports / Special)

Georgia Tech had offered awhile back. With good reason. He’s a home state kid. The Yellow Jackets also unleashed the former Sandy Creek star onto the football world last decade.

Georgia has also offered the Marietta native. It is also rather significant.

“When coach Coley offered me, my mind really went blank,” he said. “My mind was blown by a Georgia offer. Georgia? Now that’s a big-time offer there.”

He impressed at the Nike Orlando “The Opening regional” during his testing. He measured in at 6 feet, 5 inches and 210 pounds. The Marietta native threw the power ball 43 feet and came up with a 35.5-inch vertical.

His short shuttle clocked 4.38 seconds. He posted a laser 4.63 time in the 40. That was rather slow for him. But he also won the Under Armour “IllSpeed Challenge” obstacle course gauntlet during that tour stop in Orlando.

That’s why he gets called “Mr. IllSpeed” now around the IMG team.

Jordan now holds offers from Boston College, Central Florida, Georgia, Georgia Tech and Troy. He was still figuring out this week whether he would be at G-Day or UCF. The G-Day trip hinged on getting a ride up to Athens.

UGA receivers coach James Coley offered Jordan.

“He was straight to the point and offered me,” Jordan said. “He said that I was more than welcome to come to Georgia and that he needed me.”

“I told coach Coley when he offered me that it was a big offer,” he said. “I wanted him to know that I thought Georgia was a big big big-time school. That was mind blowing for me. Georgia is an amazing school. I was truly blessed to get that offer.”

Jalen Jordan’s recruiting story

Jordan arrived at IMG with just that Georgia Tech offer. He was a multi-sport athlete in basketball, football and track at small Class A St. Francis in Alpharetta.

Jalen Jordan
Jalen Jordan has no stars yet. But he has an offer from both Georgia and Georgia Tech. (Student Sports / Special)

He’s thankful to IMGA coach Kevin Wright for the chance he got to play for the Ascenders. He was on the squad with SEC and Power 5 seniors hogging the reps. Jhamon Ausbon signed with Texas A&M. Emmanuel Greene signed with UCF.

Tre’ McKitty, a huge tight end, signed with FSU. His teammate Brian Hightower has already committed to Miami in the Class of 2018.

He still played in four games, caught five passes and two of those went for scores.

“Coach Wright gave me an opportunity to come in and play here and I proved myself,” Jordan said. “I had to jump in here and compete with everybody. The best of the best.”

He’s thrived on it.

“I’m a worker,” Jordan said. “You can ask anybody or any coach around here and they will tell you that I try to be one of the very hardest workers on this team. I am by far one of the hardest workers here. That’s why I have already grown so fast and grown so much at IMG. Just being here in the atmosphere among the best of the best is just contagious. You are going to get better.”

Jordan has actually already seen UGA. The new UGA and the indoor facility. That was earlier this year on an IMG caravan across the Southeast.

He caught Coley’s eye there. It was funny that he started receiving the elite edits from UGA before he actually picked up his UGA offer.

“When we went to Georgia that time Coach Coley told me that they were trying to get me offered,” Jordan said. “So I just waited patiently and sure enough that offer came.”

He enjoyed everything about that visit. He said he already felt very comfortable with what he saw at UGA.

“I thought Georgia was just amazing,” he said. “It was real hype to see how the coaches were and how they worked. I just thought everything about Georgia was real nice.”

Another interesting twist

Jordan’s sister, Jala, is also at IMG Academy. She’s an elite basketball prospect. Jayla also has an offer from UGA.

“That’s something we talk about all the time,” he said. “Going to play together at the same school in college. We could do that at Georgia.”

Jalen Jordan
Jalen Jordan said he hopes to play in front of his family and friends a lot in college. (Student Sports / Special)

Jordan will graduate early from IMG Academy and enroll early in January of 2018.

“I’m a family guy,” Jordan said. “My family is very important to me. So are my friends. You could really say that I’m a big on friends and a big family guy.”

His recruiting by nature is very early. He’s in the baby steps stage. But he said that Georgia should go a long way through the twists and turns of his decision and process.

“I am taking this offer very seriously,” Jordan said. “I am going to take it very far and have to talk to my parents a lot about what I should do. This is a great offer. I’m truly blessed to have this offer.”

He said that he’d hope to play in front of his family and friends a lot at the college level. That should be one important piece of the puzzle in regard to his decision.

Jordan already has grown to love the all-around aspects of the position. That’s what a big-time receiver will have to do in Georgia’s pro-style offense.

“Blocking to me is pretty much just as important to me as catching the ball,” he said. “I find that to be very important for a receiver.”

The Calvin Johnson stuff

Calvin Johnson was only the baddest receiver in the NFL for a run of at least 4-5 seasons. It is only natural that a young man would appreciate that comparison.

That’s Jordan’s player parallel. No doubt. But it is genuine.

Maurice Stovall played with Johnson in the NFL. He’s now a receivers coach at IMG Academy. He feels that a fair comparison.

“Coach Mo told me how he played with Calvin Johnson in Detroit and he says we have a lot of similarities,” he said. “That’s obviously the ultimate compliment and very humbling coming from a guy who has seen that and can say that.”

Jordan is the biggest receiver at IMG. That’s in both height and weight. He’s also very likely the fastest receiver at IMG Academy right now, too.

He said that Coley wanted to see a lot of tape prior to the offer. That’s his junior film and even some practice film from IMG.

“He told me how he liked how big I was but also how well I could move for being 6-foot-5 and weighing in at 213 pounds,” Jordan said. “That’s what I weighed there at that time”

Interesting G-Day visitor added

Dameon Pierce is coming to G-Day this weekend. That’s highly interesting. Just pick a reason why.

  • Dameon Pierce
    Dameon Pierce visited UGA last year prior to committing to Alabama. (Dameon Pierce / Special)

    He plays for Bainbridge High. That’s Kirby Smart’s alma mater.

  • Pierce is a very successful and productive South Georgia back that’s rated as the No. 6 RB in the nation by the 247Sports Composite.
  • He’s also been committed to Alabama for almost a year now.

Pierce doesn’t take a lot of trips to Alabama. There’s a distance factor. But it is also highly interesting that a prized in-state RB prospect from Smart’s hometown will be in Athens on Saturday.

Alabama has its A-Day on Saturday. Pierce will be at G-Day.

That’s something to keep an eye on.