Addison Nichols: This UGA O-line target truly has an All-American resume

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Addison Nichols. Just a story here about an All-American youth and an All-American football player. And an Eagle Scout. And an Honor student. And a musician.

Want to attack every day with the latest UGA football recruiting info? That’s what the Intel brings. This is a simple one about a second-degree black belt Eagle Scout All-American football player. He also gets great grades, plays three instruments and also holds a part-time job at the local supermarket. We’re probably leaving a few things out about Addison Nichols here, but such is life. 

There’s a scene in the classic Eddie Murphy film “Coming to America” that comes to mind when Addison Nichols is in action. This now goes back for a few years of watching him.

It is an odd comparison to make, but bear with it for a bit.

At the risk of still not spoiling things in that movie, there’s a part where a supporting character remarks the male lead should have no problem picking up the check.

“He’s got his own money and baby when I tell you he’s got his own money I mean the boy has got his own money,” the splendid actor who was also the Dad from “Good Times” exults.

A bill is shared. Upon further review, the face of the male lead is on those.

It leads to this: When the sentence forms that Nichols has an All-American resume, it means that he has got his own All-American resume.

Check it out flush right.

For starters, this 6-foot-5, 310-pound rising senior has a resume.

Reporters don’t see many of those from high school players or even prospects.

The rising senior at Greater Atlanta Christian is an All-American at that.

He also has a great many All-American things on his resume, including the likes of ….

  • 2022 All-American invitation for both the Adidas and Under Armour games
  • MaxPreps.com Junior All-American team
  • No. 1 OL in the state of Georgia for 2022
  • 30-plus Divison I football scholarship offers
  • 4-star recruiting ranking
  • 3.77 grade-point average
  • Member of the GACS track and field and golf teams
  • Threw a shot put 45.9 feet in middle school
  • Eagle Scout
  • Second-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do
  • Self-taught musician (guitar, piano, ukulele) 
  • Part-time Kroger employee since 2018 (He’s earned a couple of promotions at that job, too)
  • Supported families with terminally ill children through Lighthouse Ministries
  • Planned, organized and headed a donation drive for The Drake House, an organization that allows homeless people to recover with dignity
  • Delivered poinsettias to the elderly during the holidays
  • Volunteers and provides home improvement services to the needy
  • Worked with handicapped children for two summers at his church’s bible school

That is truly the resume of an All-American high school player. Nichols simply believes that community involvement just makes him a better athlete.

These collective feats here for a high school kid will make even Steve Rogers seem aloof. There’s a rhetorical question here: Who does this stuff?

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Addison Nichols: What his June will look like

His first offer came in January of his freshman year. It was Vanderbilt. Sounds about right. That came after a freshman season baptism. He was thrown into the mix after an injury to one of GAC’s starting tackles.

There you go, kid. Make it work.

He did while struggling at first and gradually getting better in his first season as an impromptu starter. When he started getting reps, he was fortunate to learn from a pair of All-Americans on his team. That was the impressive brother tandem of Chris and Myles Hinton. Chris signed with Michigan in 2019. Myles chose Stanford in 2020.

Nichols was adept very early on at pass protection. Yet his favorite thing to do was nothing of the sort.

“My favorite part is when I get the ability to pull and go hit some little skill player that has never seen it coming before,” he said.

He has a back-to-back-to-back-to-back set of official visits coming up in June.

  • June 4-6: UGA
  • June 11-13: Florida
  • June 18-20: Southern Cal
  • June 25-27: Ohio State

Tennessee was a major school of interest for him growing up. He’s still heavily pursued by the Vols and has been to that campus for games and visits many times. Nichols just didn’t see the need to give that school an official visit yet. That’s because he was so well-versed with that program.

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A few thoughts from Addison Nichols about Georgia

Nichols has said all of the following about Georgia over the years.

“They are a fantastic school.” 

“Their offensive line is incredible.” 

“I love their coaching staff.” 

“The atmosphere at the game was really incredible.” 

“I don’t know what to say about Georgia. I just really like it.”

He struck up a tight friendship with longtime Georgia 2022 commitment CJ Washington when they played with one another at the Georgia Elite Classic in December of 2019. That seems like so long ago.

Nichols said last month that 5-star Georgia commitment Gunner Stockton had started to reach out about playing together. Stockon also plans to be in Athens on that same official visit weekend with so many other top-shelf offensive prospects for UGA in the 2022 cycle.

This young man remembers visiting Georgia back during the 2019 season. He was there for that lone South Carolina home loss in 2019. It still stands as the only home loss in Athens since Kirby Smart’s first team in 2016.

The 4-star lineman was there for that. He was impressed by the support and the crowd. Nichols came back for the next home game.

The now-retired black belt plans to weigh his options carefully. Once he makes his decision, that will be it.

“A commitment is a commitment,” he said. “When you make that commitment, then you stick to it. You’re with that commitment from then on.”

Academics will be big in his decision. He will also look for a family feeling where it seems like he’s at home within the program.

Addison Nichols (left) and Cedartown’s CJ Washington (right) are two of the elite recruits in Georgia for the 2022 cycle. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation)

An Eagle Scout and a self-taught musician

When he’s not playing football, he likes to play music.

“I play the guitar, ukelele and piano,” he said. “I don’t really have much time outside of playing football.

He’ll play classical music on the piano. The ukelele will call for more fun songs like the pitch when “Over the Rainbow” gets going.

“On the guitar, I like the more pop songs,” he said. “More modern. So each instrument is a little different.”

He used to play basketball. Now it is football in the fall and golf and track and field in the spring. The wonder here is what he would have been able to add to that resume if he wasn’t so busy.

That black belt in karate is parked. He hasn’t been active in that discipline in a few years. That said, he retains the body control, coordination and flexibility that allowed him to go beyond his first black belt.

He picked up Tae Kwon Do when he was six or seven years old. He stopped that training when was 14.

“The hand moves and motions really helped me out with my hands to make them quicker,” he said. “I was definitely a lot more flexible when I did it. Just in general everything about it just made something better about my game.”

The Eagle Scout stuff is a rare feat. According to the Wikipedia page, it is the highest achievement or rank attainable in the Scouts BSA program of the Boy Scouts of America. Since its inception in 1911, only four percent of Scouts have earned this rank after a lengthy review process. The Eagle Scout rank has been earned by over 2.5 million youth.

That distinction came through years of work. His final project involved a nearby park where he put some benches, pine straw and a mini-library for the children who lived nearby.

“It was just a few hundred yards from an elementary school,” he said. “We had some people donate some books and we put some more books in there and not even a day later I had already seen the books move and some were already missing.”

He painted the free book vault in red and white and made it look like a barn. His last merit badge was for citizenship in the nation. There are 21 merit badges on the road to becoming an Eagle Scout.

“The hardest one was either family life or fitness,” he said. “Due to the fact they take so long. You have to record progress over a series of months. It was long and dragging. I made sure I got those done pretty early.”

Addison Nichols has a dream of going to college, then to the NFL and doing the best that he can. He’d like to have a long pro career. Then he will retire and be a good father, he said. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation)

Addison Nichols: He’s an All-American teammate, too

Nichols wants to know everything about football. Not just what to do, but also why.

“I love that about him,” Greater Atlanta Christian coach Tim Hardy said.

Nichols started as a freshman due to an injury. He came in the second series of the first game of his freshman season. He suddenly became the new left tackle.

“Over the course of that season he really grew by fire and really came along and developed,” Hardy said. “He really came along and was a really good player by the end of his freshman year. Addison was an excellent player his sophomore year and then dominant last year.”

What is it like to coach at Eagle Scout? Hardy said it is not like Nichols is “McGyver” at every practice. He’s not fixing his helmet. He’s not standing ready to remedy everyone’s buckle, chin straps or eye shields before the team’s managers and trainers can.

He’s even an effective two-way player on both sides of the ball on the defensive line.  As he has matured, he has sought out more and more two-way reps.

“Addison is like an o-line culture guy,” Hardy said. “If the crew is going to eat wings, the first guy there saying ‘Let’s go’ and ‘Let’s do this’ is Addison. He’s always just wanted to invest and connect with his teammates. If you watch him, he really celebrates the successes on the field of the other guys. Whether it is running down the field for one of his guys who scores a touchdown or celebrating with them on the sidelines. He takes a lot of joy in seeing his teammates do well.”

There’s a picture last year of him leading the cheers on the sideline. The game in hand, but it was as if he was set to earn a cheerleader merit for celebrating the reserves moving down the field.

That falls in line with what Nichols has long felt was the best part about playing football for him.

“Personally, I like the brotherhood,” he said back when he was first getting seriously recruited by UGA in the fall of 2019. “I like being with my team. I love my teammates. We’re all brothers. The chemistry we have is unbelievable. It is like in chemistry. It is like a chemical bond. It is hard to break.”

Hardy said he sees Nichols acting like any normal student. Definitely not a distanced All-American player.

“He’s still hanging around the lunch table and cracking jokes as a 17-year-old kid with his buddies and I love that about him, too,” Hardy said.

That’s why he values football as the ultimate team game.

“There are other sports where it is not really all team,” Addison Nichols said. “Like in basketball, someone could dominate the game. Golf is a single-person sport. With baseball, someone could be like the best player and it is all them. But in football, if 10 people on the field do well and then that one person makes a mistake it blows up the whole play. It can ruin the entire drive.”

Consider him a new age lineman. The All-American even lists sushi as one of his favorite foods.

The thinking here is what program will eventually be able to add Nichols to the team. What’s the best program for his services? The space program? He’s got the resume for anything.

Check out the junior highlight reel for Nichols below.

SENTELL’S INTEL

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