Go ahead and commit the name Mecole Hardman, Jr. to memory.
Play-by-play announcer Scott Howard will toy around with a few catchphrases after his first few highlights, too. The nation’s No. 1 athlete is the early favorite with Jacob Eason for the player that will raise his voice the most over the next four seasons.
Hardman’s highlight tape plays as if it is on fast forward. A friend recorded a rap song in tribute that plays over his highlight remix. The entire nation saw what the natural showman can do with a banner, six cakes and UGA gear on National Signing Day.
DawgNation has chronicled how his quickness and speed will have few peers in the SEC once he arrives on campus. But he’s also a natural leader and a team sparkplug. Eason said this week he expects Hardman to be an energy guy on tough practice days when the team needs a spark.
The 5-star prospect rarely sleeps and is always looking for a way to compete. Hardman also proved to be a strong behind-the-scenes recruiter. He spoke to Tyler Simmons on the night before his flip from Alabama to UGA on National Signing Day and didn’t hang up the phone until he felt his work was done there.
Hardman also said a bunch of things on National Signing Day that should get UGA fans revved up. Watch the video. The transcript doesn’t do them justice.
Q: Do the incoming recruits feel they better be playing in big games at UGA?
A: “We should be playing in big bowl games. With this (2017) class like I tell all these ‘17 recruits in Georgia: ‘If you live in Georgia man hey let’s get this home state back popping and get it going. Let’s go back to the Matthew Stafford and Knowshon (Moreno) and A.J. Green days and make this state proud. I’m tired of seeing everybody else win. It is time to get us winning. So ‘17 recruits let’s build this train up now. Man, Richard LeCounte, I need you. You my boy. Let’s go on and get this class together.”
Q: What did the Georgia coaches react when they knew you were coming?
A: “Let’s get to work. They just said ‘Let’s go to work and they are ready,’ so it is time to get to work and I’m ready to do it.”
Q: What will be your message to (uncommitted 5-star receiver) Demetris Robertson after today is over?
A: “D-Rob, if you are watching this bro to the end I know Stanford and you want to go to Stanford so bad but if they try to make you raise your test scores just to come on a visit or just to go? Man. Any other school will take you right now. Georgia is home. So go ahead and come home and come play with me and Terry Godwin, Isaiah McKenzie, Tyler Simmons, Jacob Eason, Elijah Holyfield and Nick Chubb. The list goes on. We’re trying to get things special and you are one of those missing parts.”
Q: Did he think it was possible Derrick Brown or Mack Wilson might sign with UGA?
A: “It could be possible. I think anything can happen. The last minutes (ones) are really the ones that get a lot of recruits that like (say) ‘Forget this I’m going here’ so I am just going to see and respect their decisions. I am going to meet them at the top either way it goes.”
Unless otherwise indicated, player rankings and ratings are from the 247Sports Composite.
Jeff Sentell covers UGA football and UGA recruiting for AJC.com and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Follow him on Twitter for the latest on who’s on their way to play Between the Hedges.