Javon Bullard shared his college decision on Monday night. He made that college commitment abruptly three days ago.
The 6-foot, 183-pound defensive back finally knew. When he did, he considered it a wonderful coincidence he could also reveal his choice while honoring his big sister’s birthday.
So this moment marks a “Happy Birthday” to Jamesia Bullard and a happy commitment day of his own.
“I didn’t mean to drop it or commit on her birthday but it all just kind of happened like that,” Bullard said. “It is a big moment for me but also for her on a special day like this, too.”
His family will not have to travel far from to go see him play. Bullard tweeted out the word on Monday evening he was staying home to play for Georgia.
Why did he choose UGA from a top 7 which included Louisville, NC State, Pitt, South Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia?
“It just felt right,” Bullard said. “That gut decision when you pray about it and ask God to give you a sign. I felt like he gave me that sign Friday night. I talked to the family. Everybody was on board. Everything just seemed right.”
“Not to mention it is not as far away from my home as I would be mostly with some other schools. It just felt right. Felt like my heart was in a good place. Not only that but my coaches and I have a great relationship there. Everything just seemed right.”
There’s an 11-year age difference but Javon considers his big sister “a second mother” at all times.
“That’s just brother and sister love right there,” Bullard said. “A special bond. You can’t replace that.”
Bullard becomes the 13th commitment for Georgia’s 2021 class. He’s the second DB pledge in the class in a year in which Georgia will have to replenish the talent in that room after the 2020 season.
He is a likely safety for Georgia on Saturdays. But he’s not certain about his best college fit yet.
“Right now I don’t know,” he said. “The biggest thing about me is my versatility. I can play all those positions like safety, cornerback and nickel cornerback and not lose a step and still be able to contribute to a team.”
The ironic part behind this decision made in the midst of the pandemic is he only got the chance to visit one of the schools in his top 7. That was N.C. State and not Georgia, among all the others.
JAVON BULLARD: The things to know about the new Bulldog DB
Bullard might be one of the most out-of-the-blue August commitments of the Kirby Smart era. Those that follow Georgia recruiting very closely might have known his name but he might be one of those DB targets they knew the least about.
There’s a huge layer of irony here because they don’t know Bullard the way those do in Milledgeville.
The Baldwin Braves know him very well.
So well in fact that his head coach could not stop talking about him. Baldwin head coach Jesse Hicks shared a glowing review which certainly makes it seem like Kirby Smart has found another under-the-radar DB in the Eric Stokes mold.
Hicks said the following about Bullard:
- He said he’s in the “top three percent” of all the players he’s coached or sent to major Power 5 schools in his 25 years, including well over a dozen players who have gone on to either the SEC or the NFL
- Said that if he could put a picture in the dictionary for the word student-athlete it would be a picture of Bullard
- Feels he can play any position in the secondary adequately but made sure to stress that he is “also a heck of a kick returner and a punt returner.”
- Feels he is a Sunday guy as a player and then after that, he would be a great fit as a major Division I head football coach
- Considers his natural position as free safety
- His biggest attributes are his understanding and intelligence about the game
“He pretty much runs the gamut,” Hicks said. “He’s what you want in a teammate. He’s what you want in a son. He’s what you want as a student-athlete. He’s what you want in a person. He’s one of those guys that I think I would let date my daughter. He’s one of those types of kids.”
That might read like a proud head coach bragging on one of his kids. But Hicks then cemented his points there with two stories.
“The first time I met him he was in the eighth grade,” Hicks said. “This is going to sound crazy but I go back to his eighth-grade year coming in as a freshman.”
He remembers meeting Bullard when he was in middle school. Hicks makes an annual trip to meet the future rising freshmen players for his program.
When he met the young man, he said he was mesmerized.
“I remember walking in and seeing him as a guy who gave you immediate eye contact,” he said. “You don’t get that from most kids. He was looking me in my mouth waiting for every word like it was about to fall out of my mouth. You just don’t catch too many kids like that. I remember talking to him that day and I felt like I was talking to an adult.”
Bullard told him that day he wanted to go play major Division I football. He said he wanted to major in mass communications and wanted to be on camera for ESPN one day, too.
“I was like this guy is different,” Hicks said. “I felt like I was talking to a college student.”
That was then. That level of respect between the two has grown considerably.
“Now the conversation with him is so rich,” Hicks said. “Sometimes I go and talk to Javon so I can learn what he knows and what he is thinking and have that intelligence and way of looking at things to flow into me.”
That decision finally came to Bullard late Friday night.
“I knew that God was going to give me a sign eventually,” Bullard said. “I just took that gut feeling and went with it. It was Friday night. Man, everything just made sense. I sat down with the family. I talked with the coaches. Everything just made sense.”
Bullard has actually graduated from Baldwin High. Hicks said that he is working on his associate’s degree. The plan there is for him to enter college with an associate’s degree through advanced placement college credits.
He also said he’s not certain if he will enroll early. Georgia will also be a good match for him with his intended college major. He still plays to study communications and be on ESPN one day, too.