Elijah Jeudy celebrates his birthday today. He will ironically honor the occasion by bestowing a gift on the Georgia Bulldog defense.
The 4-star OLB from Northeast High (Philadelphia, Pa.) committed to UGA off a live feed from his Instagram account. He becomes the seventh commitment of the 2021 class for the Bulldogs.
The Bulldogs bested Texas A&M for this talented edge defender.
“My heart is pounding,” Jeudy said on the feed prior to his decision.
The 6-foot-3, 245-pound rising senior chose Georgia with a flurry of late interest sparked by a January offer and a quick trip to check out Georgia prior to the NCAA dead period for on-campus recruiting and the shelter-in-place COVID-19 restrictions which came down in mid-March.
Georgia is getting a good dual-role defender for its defense with this class. Jeudy’s frame and elite production on film identifies a prospect who can play the run and rush the passer without really having to sell out to be adept at either discipline.
Jeudy will be a “Jack” outside linebacker in the Georgia defense.
Why Georgia? Check out a sampling of his quotes regarding a pivotal first visit for the future “Wolfpack” member of the Bulldog defense.
They will help identify what the biggest “pros” were for Georgia in the chase to add Jeudy to the 2021 class.
- “I’ll be able to practice while the starters are practicing. I will practice and I wouldn’t be sitting on the sideline doing nothing or just watching the first-team and the older guys.”
- “I will be able to pay the sport I love and still be able to get a very good education.”
- “I will still be able to be close to home, too.”
- “There wasn’t really any ‘cons’ here for Georgia.”
Jeudy said the staff sees him dropping back and putting his hand in the dirt. He already has an idea of what he likes best about the chance to play at Georgia.
The keyword there is play.
“It is the way they do things with the rotations,” he said earlier this year. “The way they get their guys in the game and keep them coming in fresh playing a lot of guys and then it is the way they treat their players. They treat their players like they are one of their own. Like their sons.”
He actually told the Georgia staff that he was coming the day after he dropped his final five schools bacon April 8. That was a silent commitment before he released his decision publicly on his social feeds on his birthday.
The 5 quick things to know about the Elijah Jeudy decision
Jeudy said on the feed that his college decision came down to academics.
“Football is nothing without the education,” he said.
He noted that the recruiting process had been stressful for him, but that he was able to adjust to it.
We’re going to crash in off the edge on this one. Hard and fast. Kind of like the way that Elijah Jeudy plays for Northeast High School in Philadelphia.
The first thing to know about Jeudy is he plays with a clear purpose in mind. That’s evident by the choice of No. 16 for his jersey.
“Last year I lost my aunt,” Jeudy said. “So that No. 16 means a lot to me right now.”
It is personal. Her name was Carla Jeudy. She was just 36 years at the time of her passing. The family was told by the doctors it was due to natural causes.
“That number 16 represents the year of my life that I lost her at,” he said.
He will look to wear that number for as long as he can. He can certainly continue to do that throughout his college career. Provided no one else has it on the defensive side of the ball.
Carla Jeudy was his father’s sister. He lost her last summer.
“She meant a lot to me even though I wasn’t able to see her as much as I would have liked to,” he said. “Even when she wasn’t around, it was just good vibes from her. She was a lovely person and when she’s in the room, she could just light up the room.”
Jeudy even included a picture of his aunt on his commitment video.
What are the other four things to know right off the jump here?
- The Jeudy decision ensures Georgia will keep the Philadelphia pipeline to the UGA program intact with the 2021 season. D’Andre Swift will be chosen high next week in the 2020 NFL Draft. Senior Mark Webb has one more year of his consistently excellent play in the UGA secondary before he’s on his way to the Sunday league, too. Jeudy will now enroll at Georgia for the 2021 season.
- His dream school was Oregon growing up living in Philadelphia. He chooses Georgia in mid-April despite not having the Bulldogs in the top six he released back in December of 2019.
- He plans a major in sports marketing. He has his eye on business ownership. Jeudy sees himself as being an entrepreneur in the sports apparel industry.
- He does not expect to be able to enroll early in January of 2021. His school system and the league he plays in does not allow it.
Elijah Jeudy: What his decision means for Georgia recruiting
The choice made by Jeudy on his birthday now moves Georgia up from No. 14 to No. 7 nationally in the 247Sports Team Composite rankings.
The 247Sports Composite ratings chart Jeudy as the nation’s No. 12 weak-side DE. That slots him as the nation’s No. 167 overall prospect for this cycle. He is the No. 8 player from the state of Pennsylvania for 2021.
Those rankings now place him sixth out of the seven commitments for 2021 on the Georgia board. That’s at least as far as those rankings go.
The scouting perspective here is that he’s going to wind up a lot better than that.
Jeudy’s decision can be framed up in a few other ways. It does finally add a true out-of-state prospect to the 2021 class. This verbal non-binding pledge now gives the Bulldogs seven commitments for the 2021 cycle.
It does now mean the Bulldogs will have more commitments for the defensive side of the ball that the other side of the line. I do see that trend continuing as three of the last five Georgia commits have been for that side of the line.
Lovasea Carroll does go to boarding school in Florida. That’s why he is listed as an out-of-state commitment for all the recruiting services, but he grew up Warren County which is just outside the greater Augusta area. His home is less than 90 minutes away from Sanford Stadium.
Tweet timeline: Check out the Elijah Jeudy story
Georgia was able to out-kick major contenders like LSU, Oregon, Tennessee and Texas A&M for this decision. Take a look at what the top 6 schools for Jeudy looked like back in December.
The decision today should be seen as a big win for the Georgia recruiting effort. The charge here was led by highly-personable defensive coordinator Dan Lanning.
This is my top 6 but my recruitment is still open pic.twitter.com/VvxZ4pOk9z
— Elijah Jeudy1️⃣6️⃣ (@ElijahJeudy) December 5, 2019
Florida was in that race at that time.
— Elijah Jeudy1️⃣6️⃣ (@ElijahJeudy) December 1, 2019
Georgia was able to jump into this race with a January offer and a very quick turnaround visit.
Just when we thought it was slowing down… look at GOD… after an awesome conversation @ElijahJeudy was blessed wit an offer from @ugaFBnation #GOD1st🙏🏾 #destinedforgreatness #weworkin… https://t.co/k14j1ferYy
— Haitian Superman (@haitiansuperman) January 16, 2020
— Elijah Jeudy1️⃣6️⃣ (@ElijahJeudy) January 16, 2020
His high school teammates call him “Mayhem” and with good reason. He wreaks havoc coming off the edge.
Mayhem 🌪 pic.twitter.com/U6GOMN75GN
— Elijah Jeudy1️⃣6️⃣ (@ElijahJeudy) January 17, 2020
His visit to UGA right before the dead period came down in February certainly changed up that previously released top 6.
— Elijah Jeudy1️⃣6️⃣ (@ElijahJeudy) February 2, 2020
His father, Clifford Jeudy, is a former college football player who now works as corrections officer and a professional bodyguard. He’s certainly qualified for that vocation. He made it as far as a professional opportunity in the Arena Football League with the Philadelphia Soul.
Check out his reaction to that Swift/Webb/Jeudy edit.
Shout out @GeorgiaFootball ….Do you know how much of an honor it is for @ElijahJeudy to be in the same pic as Swift and Webb! Yeah it's a big deal! @CoachDanLanning #officialvisitsoon #PAtoGA #phillysfinest #puttingphillyonthemap pic.twitter.com/H9jf8zotIZ
— Haitian Superman (@haitiansuperman) March 2, 2020
There was a time when Jeudy was planning to commit in June to honor his aunt around the time of her passing and funeral. But the COVID-19 shutdown and quarantine led him to come up with a different timeline.
There’s been a change in plans. My commitment date will be come sooner then expected. I’ve decided to make this a birthday gift to myself since it’s being spent in quarantine. April 19th 4pm save the date 😈🙏🏾
— Elijah Jeudy1️⃣6️⃣ (@ElijahJeudy) April 17, 2020
Elijah Jeudy: Check out the film on the newest Bulldog
When looking at the Georgia roster at Jeudy’s position, he certainly should be seen as a boost to the team’s future pass rush. We’ll drop some future film clips in this section which will attest to that.
It is also a needed position for the 2021 class. A current scan of Georgia’s OLB room shows that the “Wolfpack” part of the Georgia D is flush with talent. There’s Azeez Ojulari and Nolan Smith and Jermaine Johnson and Adam Anderson and Walter Grant as the front-line talent for the squad. Let’s also not forget Robert Beal who tested out the portal briefly but returned to the program.
That said, the Bulldogs only signed one OLB prospect at all in the 2020 cycle. That was former 5-star recruit Mekhail Sherman.
While the current level of talent Georgia enjoys at the OLB spot doesn’t look up to any other roster at the country, it is due for a heavy dose of reinforcements with the 2021 class. Ojulari and his family will value his degree first. That’s the only reason why he might not be an early entry for the 2021 NFL Draft given that he redshirted the 2018 season while recovering from an injury. He’s technically just a redshirt sophomore for the upcoming season.
Grant and Johnson will exhaust their NCAA eligibility after that next season. Anderson is also the type of elite athlete that will at least have to probe his draft status after the 2020 season, too. Beal also will have a redshirt season to think about in 2021.
That said, it is not stretch to think that everyone in the OLB room outside of Sherman could have moved on from the program in the span of two seasons. Nolan Smith, the former No. 1 player in the nation per the 247Sports Composite ratings, is also a guy to look at that might declare early.
That’s why Jeudy matters here. It is also why Georgia will need to add at least two more edge defenders to join the “Wolfpack” in the cycle. The most highly-coveted targets for the program that have shown mutual strong interest in the Bulldogs would be 4-star strong-side DE Quintin Somerville and 4-star OLB Dallas Turner. Those two edge defenders rate as the nation’s No. 94 and 124 overall prospects for 2021, respectively.
Check out what Jeudy can do when he’s turned loose. Look at the ball getoff in this clip.
— "EJ Holland" (@EJHolland_TW) January 24, 2020
His junior highlight reel appears below. Jeudy was named an All-League selection after starring on a defensive that only allowed 5.3 points per game during the 2019 regular season.
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