FRISCO, Tex. — Tank Bigsby is from Georgia. He ranks as the nation’s No. 8 RB prospect (247Sports Composite scale) for 2020. That well-respected service will also list him as the nation’s No. 50 overall prospect.
DawgNation readers continue to ask about him. They see the needs for Georgia in the 2020 class at running back and wonder: How good are these other out-of-state national backs that mean the Bulldogs aren’t rating an in-state “Tank” among the highest of priorities?
Those prospects like Demarkcus Bowman (Florida), Don Chaney Jr. (Florida), Zachary Evans (Texas), Seth McGowan (Texas), Kendall Milton (California) and Marshawn Lloyd (Maryland) are all elite. Those are six of the top seven RB targets in the country for this class.
But this Georgia-grown “Tank” is pretty good in his own right. He did dash for 2,221 yards on 9.3 yards per rush attempt for 22 scores as a junior in 2018.
A better question has begun to emerge: Are those national out-of-state backs from places like Florida, Maryland, Oklahoma and Texas that much better than Bigsby?
The answer, it seems, is not much at all. If at all.
He said that Georgia coach Dell McGee isn’t hitting his hard these days with recruiting pitches at all. He’s been serving as more of a mentor.
“He’s just been teaching me stuff,” Bigsby said. “Just life stuff. Plays. Stuff like that. Stuff that is on the next level and for the next level. Talking to me. Just things I need to know. That’s major. For real.”
Bigsby is actually the third Georgia target in the last three cycles to have picked up the nickname “Tank” coming up. The first was for an Alabama offensive lineman in Tank Jenkins. The second was for a great safety signee for the Tennessee Vols in Tank McCollough in the 2019 class.
The origin of his nickname is unique.
“When I was young I was playing rec league [football] and I was six years old,” he said. “I busted my head open and got stitches. My coach called me ‘Tank’ then because I kept running. I’ve been ‘Tank’ ever since then. My mom even started calling me that.”
Is Tank Bigsby emerging as a bigger priority for UGA?
Bigsby has seen his stock rise of late. The 6-foot, 210-pound rising senior from Callaway High has always had the film. Cartavious “Tank” Bigsby has looked the part of an elite back on big stages against championship-caliber programs in Georgia.
He’s also about 15 pounds heavier than he was at this time a year ago.
There was once the scouting notion he was so athletic that he might wind up at safety, slot receiver or evolve into an all-purpose scatback on Saturdays, too. The 4-star RB showed off his hands last week at The Opening finals with every opportunity grabbing catches out of the backfield.
If there was any concern with his scouting profile, it was his speed.
But Bigsby checked off the boxes with his speed and athleticism last week at The Opening. He was credited with the following performances during combine testing:
- 4.55: Laser time in the 40-yard dash (An improvement of 0.05 seconds from his regional)
- 4.34: Short shuttle “5-10-5” pro agility drill (He lowered this by 0.07 seconds, too)
- 35 feet: Powerball toss
- 34.9 inches: Vertical jump (An increase of two inches from the regional in May)
- 210 pounds: Weight (up four pounds from his showing in May)
- 103.41: Opening combine testing rating
How did he do in all the positional drills? Well, Bigbsy looked skilled enough to join a select group of just three running backs that major 5-star RB target Kendall Milton has discussed the thought of sharing a backfield together with. The other two were South Carolina commit MarShawn Lloyd and Texas 5-star RB Zachary Evans.
Milton said the competition with the other elite backs was the best part about the Opening.
“For me, I would say just the competition,” Milton said. “Being able to go with dudes like Tank Bigsby and Sam Adams like all week and MarShawn Lloyd. Those are top-notch dudes with the top-notch ability so it has just been fun being able to compete with some of the top backs in the country and get after it.”
That’s a pretty good eyeball assessment as to Bigsby’s skill set.
How does Bigsby feel about his process so far? Have the Bulldogs made him a bigger priority over the last few weeks? That’s the next rep in this update.
Tank Bigsby discusses his upcoming decision
He has taken three official visits so far. Those have been to Auburn, LSU and South Carolina. Bigsby also wanted to run fast at the Opening. He wanted to crack the 4.5-second mark with his laser 40.
“I wanted to get a 4.3 really,” he said.
He didn’t feel like he was under any pressure to time well
“Not for real,” he said. “They may start coming harder but they have all really been coming hard already. I don’t really know the answer to that yet.”
Who’s coming harder?
“The majority,” Bigsby said. “Everybody really.”
He also wants to hit the gas on his decision over the next two months.
“I want to get this done before my senior year,” he said. “So I don’t have to worry about it. I want to get it over with, focus on my senior year and get a ring.”
What is the biggest thing he likes about Georgia right now?
“The atmosphere,” he said. “The culture. The coaches and the atmosphere. It is all very good.”
That answer sounds a lot like feels about SEC East rival South Carolina, too.
“The atmosphere,” Bigsby said. “Great coaches. The school is great, too.”
Bigsby also likes the coaches at nearby Auburn.
“It is just different down there,” he said. “They shoot you straight. It feels like a family down there.”
He’s going to see his recruiting heat up over the next 50 days leading up to his first high school game.
“The coaches are all trying to be real,” he said. “But it also feels like everyone is spinning the same thing. … Everybody says the same stuff.”
His family is not going to weight too heavily on him with this. He said that he will be “not that long” from a decision. It will be his decision.
It will also not matter what others around him in his community and his school community want him to do. He will not put much stock in what others around him are urging him to do.
“It will pretty much be my decision,” he said. “I am still thinking.”
What is he looking for?
“I’m just looking for a good school that has good instructors and teachers that will help me in class for my degree. Then good coaches. No liars and all that.”
Bigsby said he is motivated to excel in college and in the game in order to provide a better life for his mother.
Who wants to play with Tank Bigsby in college?
MarShawn Lloyd, who is committed to South Carolina, was working on him to join him in Columbia. Milton, as discussed earlier, was too.
The school choice for the 229-pound Milton is not known, but he knows he’d like to play with Bigsby on Saturdays. Those two had about four or five reps together during the drills at the Opening.
Milton was looking at “Tank” in the face as they sprinted through the competition.
“Tank he is a great player,” Milton said. “I feel like, you know, in a game, I was to come out and Tank was to come in there would be no drop-off. It would be the same production. So I feel like with Tank that he would be somebody I could play with and we could change the culture somewhere.”
The 5-star from California regarded Bigsby as a similar player. They are both versatile. Both can make the man miss. Both can also deliver power and punish defenders at the end of a run.
“It would be great to play with him,” Bigsby said. “We would do well together. He looked good out here this week.”
Don’t look for Bigsby to drop a top 8 or even a top 5 list when he makes his decision. He said that doesn’t sound likely to him at this time.