Alabama, South Carolina making runs at Georgia commit Rashad Cheney Jr.
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 a top prospect like Rashad Cheney or Joshua Moore might lean plus add some perspective to help fans figure out what it all means.
When it comes to the high-stakes word of college recruiting, replication is a sincere form of flattery. It would be a bad sign if a school’s commitments were not wanted by other schools.
It means another staff of eyes sees the same thing in a prospect that Georgia does. When that staff is at the University of Alabama, then that is another level of appreciation.
The Crimson Tide have been kicking the tires on the strength of the commitment made by defensive lineman Rashad Cheney Jr. of late.
Cheney, a Metro Atlanta prospect, is already a part of the 2019 Georgia recruiting class. The analysts at 247Sports believe the Bulldogs have the nation’s top 2019 class at this time.
Alabama checked out Cheney’s video, invited him to Tuscaloosa and played the player parallel card.
It was a mighty fine one at that. Alabama believes Cheney can be another Jonathan Allen. Alabama defensive backs coach Derrick Ansley, one of the staff’s ace recruiters, made that comparison when noting Cheney’s size and athleticism.
When Cheney visited Alabama earlier this month, prospect and potential coach held an extended conversation.
“He said I could come to Alabama and be just like Jonathan Allen,” Cheney told SEC Country’s Chris Kirschner. “For Coach Ansley to say that to me, that means I must have some special talent. Jonathan Allen might be one of the top five picks in this draft. To compare me to him just means a lot to me.”
Cheney measured at 6-feet-2 when he visited Georgia last month. He weighed 247 pounds and had an 81-inch wingspan.
Still committed to UGA
This seems about the right time to bring up the fact the Georgia was the school Cheney grew up wanting to play for. When he committed to the Bulldogs, he told DawgNation his eyes did get a little misty.
“Georgia is my dream school — and I’m committed there — but you just never know,” Cheney said. “I still have two years. So whichever school recruits me the hardest and whichever way my heart goes toward, that’s where I’ll go.”
Look for Cheney to still continue to take visits. Despite that lofty comparison to Allen, the Tide haven’t done enough to leapfrog South Carolina yet in Cheney’s recent pecking order.
“South Carolina is number two for me,” Cheney told Kirschner. “Alabama is right behind them. Everybody has two years to recruit me.”
How to hold on to Rashad Cheney Jr.
Look for Cheney to be at G-Day on April 22. That will be a sign things are still strong with that pledge. Don’t be surprised if he takes a visit to LSU sometime this spring even though he acknowledges that Baton Rouge is likely too far away from his Atlanta roots.
His father, Rashad Cheney Sr., did not accompany him on that trip to Tuscaloosa. Cheney believes there wasn’t much of a difference between Georgia and Alabama.
That could be interpreted both ways. And we’re not even talking about the opinions of athletic directors.
“What I can say about that is Georgia has a good chance of keeping me and Alabama has a good chance at pulling me away from Georgia,” Cheney Sr. said.
That statement called for further elaboration.
“Alabama has a long track record of producing NFL-caliber athletes every year,” Cheney Sr. said. “With Georgia, my heart was with them before I had an offer. [Defensive line coach Tray] Scott and I make sure we talk at least once a week. We have a good relationship. I just started talking to Coach Ansley. He’s a pretty cool guy.”
Cheney continues to feel like there’s nothing like playing for his home state. But he did acknowledge that he also heard about Alabama growing up.
“I’m here in Georgia, so I’ve been a Georgia boy,” Cheney Jr. said. “That’s why I’ve just wanted to play for them for my entire life. My dad is a Florida State fan. My dad always tells me that this is my choice, though.”
4-star WR Joshua Moore on UGA
Joshua Moore, a 4-star receiver from IMG Academy in Florida, rates as the nation’s No. 15 overall prospect at his position for 2018.
He visited Georgia on March 3. That was amid the IMG bus tour across the Southeast.
Moore, who is 6-foot-1, 165 pounds, told SEC Country that he could make his commitment in July. If he’s not ready at that time, then he will opt to share his decision at the Under Armour All-America Game.
He’s a splendid athlete who could play offense or defense on Saturdays. Florida State and LSU have also offered him the ability to play football and run track.
He said he was strongly considering Alabama, Florida State, Georgia, LSU, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Tennessee.
Why did Georgia make that list? It seems receivers coach James Coley and coach Kirby Smart have made the right impression.
“Coach Coley and Coach Smart are always telling me to change the game,” Moore said on Sunday. “I went up there a couple of weeks ago. I didn’t even do the little tour of the entire school.”
Moore just chilled.
“I just sat in their office and chopped it up with them,” he said. “Coach Smart is a cool guy and a great coach. I definitely feel good about what they’re going to do this year.”
He said that Georgia’s depth at quarterback will not be a factor in his decision.
“It doesn’t really matter to me,” Moore said. “I’ll make plays wherever. All I need is any quarterback to throw me the ball. That’s all that matters to my game.”
While Moore didn’t make that campus tour, he was able to vouch for the facilities he did see.
“The campus seemed crazy,” Moore said. “The locker rooms and that indoor facility was probably the best one I’ve seen yet. That definitely caught my eye when I was there.”
He plans to enroll early. That’s a chief benefit of the playing experience at IMG Academy. Nick Saban and Alabama are definitely staying in touch with the Texas native, too.
Moore’s highlight tape below reflects his ability to make plays all over the field.