UGA recruiting: What will nation’s No. 1 class mean to 2018 team?
Georgia finished first in the recruiting rankings in the 2018 class. Expect the Bulldogs to be at the top in 2019, too. DawgNation’s Jeff Sentell will answer a Recruiting Question of the Day on Tuesdays and Thursdays. You can ask him your questions on Twitter or the DawgNation Message board forum. Previous QODs can be found on our question of the day archives page.
QUESTION OF THE DAY
DawgNation message board user @jinx55 asks: Can you provide your take on what the rest of the 2018 class brings to the team, as guys like Adam Anderson, Chris Smith, Channing Tindall and company arrive in June. Any guys you think will standout or push for positions following what you’ve seen and heard during the Spring??
Good question. I kicked around a few ways to share this level of information quickly for a 26-man signing class. To do so, I’ll borrow a ratings scale used by NFL.com for its 2018 draft pick evaluations.
I’ll offer just one note of clarification here. It would be very easy to lump a bunch of guys together with so many high-level signees for 2018. Here’s my best guess at doing so while trying to add a level of variety.
A few of the 2018 signees, using James Cook as a perfect example, should be major factors by their junior years, but they are not expected to contribute heavily in 2018.
That serves as a proper illustration regarding the true intent here to balance short-term value with a long-term projection. Of the 26 signees, it does not seem likely to forecast more than 14-15 of these guys to one day be drafted by NFL teams.
- 9.0-10.0 — All-SEC-to-All-American-to-NFL first-round draft pick material
- 8.0-8.9 — All-SEC candidate-to-All-American potential/can go in the top 3 rounds of NFL draft
- 7.0-7.9 — Multi-year starter and eventual All-SEC candidate/NFL draft potential
- OLB Adam Anderson
- OLB Brenton Cox (early enrollee)
- QB Justin Fields (early enrollee)
- RB Zamir White (early enrollee)
- G Jamaree Salyer
- DB Tyson Campbell
- RB James Cook
- G Trey Hill (early enrollee)
- T Cade Mays (early enrollee)
- ILB Channing Tindall
- LB Quay Walker
- DB Divaad Wilson (early enrollee, injured)
- C Warren Ericson
- TE Luke Ford
- TE John FitzPatrick
- OLB Azeez Ojulari
- S Otis Reese
- CB Chris Smith
- DT Devonte Wyatt
These is a hazardous exercise. A lot of these guys need to enroll in college and acclimate to the grind of the student-athlete life. They must also adjust to and learn how to thrive in an extremely competitive depth-chart setting.
But that’s the forecast for a lot of these guys heading into their college careers.
There’s another level here that seems more grounded in reality. It is more of a short-term forecast for the 2018 and 2019 seasons. It also tries to directly answer the original question from @jinx55 from the DawgNation message board.
There should be a realistic floor and a lofty ceiling for a lot of these guys. It will be very hard for any of these guys to drop in and pull an Andrew Thomas in two months on the 2018 team. Especially since the Bulldogs will be a top-10 team heading into the season.
Reality should call for several of these names to stand out on special teams this fall and also push their way into the 2-deep during their freshman seasons.
Stand out and push for time in 2018: Anderson, 3-star P Jake Camarda, Campbell, Cox, Fields, Hill, Reese, Salyer, Smith, Tindall, Walker, White and Wyatt.