I couldn’t help but notice the symmetry when Mike Cavan strolled over to talk to 5-star junior RB Zamir “Zeus” White on the home sideline prior to the Auburn game on Saturday.
There were umpteen gazillion highly-rated recruits around, but then there was Cavan and Zamir. I was supposed to be taking pictures of recruits, but I couldn’t turn away from that sight.
5-star junior RB Zamir White (left) was a surprise unofficial visitor to UGA-Auburn on Saturday. (Jeff Sentell / AJC)
Cavan and Zeus. Back in 1980, it was Cavan and Herschel. The former assistant coach was the recruiter of record who convinced the greatest player in UGA history to sign with the program.
What Cavan said to White on Saturday was part of the reason why the 5-star RB gave that visit a “10” rating.
They spoke for maybe 5-10 minutes. Cavan would smile. They’d laugh. The now 68-year-old Georgia staffer would make gestures with his hands. White would nod.
It seemed like the young man was listening intently to everything Cavan had to say.
White is rated as a 5-star RB. He’s been pegged as the nation’s No. 1 RB and No. 4 overall recruit for 2018. I think White’s underrated despite those laurels.
I’m betting Cavan — now an assistant to head coach Kirby Smart — probably feels the same way.
“He says I remind him of Herschel and I’m the type of guy that makes him wanna start back coaching,” White told DawgNation. “He was also telling me about the history of Georgia.”
White told DawgNation it was the best visit he’s ever taken to UGA. That stands to be significant because White said at one time that UGA led for his decision “by a lot.” That was before the transition from Mark Richt to Kirby Smart, though.
Back in 1980, it was Cavan and Herschel. That’s for the pages of history. But Cavan also told White about the future before the Auburn game on Saturday.
“He told me how Coach (Kirby) Smart was going to build the program to be (even) better than it has been,” White said.
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When Cavan compares White to the 3-time All-American and the 1982 Heisman Trophy winner, it means something. It clearly made an impact on the nation’s best RB in 2018.
“That made me feel great,” White said. “That’s a huge compliment.”
5-star junior RB Zamir White (left) is one of Georgia’s top recruiting targets in the Class of 2018. Mike Cavan (right) is the special assistant to the head coach at UGA. (Jeff Sentell / AJC)
What if something he said to White on Saturday ends up planting a seed for the same thing that brought Walker to Athens?
“I can see myself fitting in their program,” White said, who said Smart also told him he’d be a big part of the offense if he chose Georgia.
White made it clear that he still has no leaders.
He rated the UGA visit a “10” but wasn’t ready to call it the best visit he’s been on. That’s because he’s not sure which visit he’d rate as the best he’s ever experienced.
He also added one other development. White is no longer going to make his decision during or after his senior season. That’s something that Alabama, Clemson, North Carolina and Ohio State fans will wait on with bated breath, too.
“I’m going to choose before my senior year so I can graduate early,” White said.
The 6-foot-1, 215-pouder with 10.5 speed in the 100 is averaging 8.2 yards per carry through his high school career.
He racked up 4539 yards and 75 touchdowns and has been called “The next Todd Gurley” since his freshman year and lived up to that lofty standard in his home state of North Carolina.
If you haven’t read his remarkable journey from humble beginning to where he’s at now, please take the time to do so.
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Follow Jeff Sentell on Twitter for the latest on who’s on their way to play Between the Hedges. Unless otherwise indicated, player rankings and ratings are from the 247Sports Composite.
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