Want a daily lap through Georgia football recruiting? That’s what the Intel will bring at least five days a week. We’ll cover the news and which way this 4-star like Trey Hill might lean plus add some perspective to help fans figure out what it all means.
Jamaree Salyer says Georgia offensive line coach Sam Pittman calls him one of the team’s two missing pieces for the program in the trenches.
Don’t fault Pittman for putting a lot of weight on the bar. He’s after a matching set.
Salyer rates as the nation’s No. 1 offensive guard per the 247Sports Composite. The other missing piece is Middle Georgia mauler Trey Hill. Hill ranks as the nation No. 2 guard for 2018.
“Georgia is recruiting both of us super hard,” Hill said. “Georgia tells me I am the missing piece at guard and center.”
It seems playing time matters more than a position.
“I’m just trying to get on the field,” Hill said. “Once I choose my school, I just want to find that opportunity to help my team.”
Hill is in the evaluation stage of his recruiting. He’s going to continue to check out top programs like Auburn, Clemson, Georgia and Florida State in terms of his decision.
That seems logical. He ranks as the nation’s No. 43 overall prospect for 2018.
He discussed his options with DawgNation at length at the Opening Atlanta regional on Sunday afternoon. We’ll get to those, but there’s something else to consider when thinking about which school will eventually get the 6-foot-4, 335-pound U.S. Army All-American in their locker room for good.
A guess about his connection to current UGA freshman QB Jake Fromm is a sound choice. Fromm will roll up both sleeves and the legs of his britches to make sure the Bulldogs sign Hill.
But that’s not it. Neither is the clear emphasis that Pittman has made in Hill’s recruiting. This goes deeper than that. There’s a reason why Hill felt so comfortable at UGA that he brought double-digit family members with him to Athens for a “Junior Day” visit that month.
This one’s on Kirby Smart. He goes back a long way with that family.
— Jeff Sentell (@jeffsentell) March 27, 2017
Kirby Smart’s Valdosta State days
Smart coached Hill’s older brother when his career blowing the whistle and charting effort was in its cub stage. Derrick Hill played on the defensive line at Valdosta State when both Smart and Will Muschamp were there.
“A good thing Georgia has going for them with Trey is that I went to Valdosta State to play,” Derrick Hill said. “Kirby was there back then.”
Derrick Hill didn’t go on that recent trip with the rest of the family.
“I haven’t gone up yet,” Derrick Hill joked. “When I go, then I would have to hurt Kirby when I do.”
Those two do speak a lot.
“Kirby and I are in a pretty good spot,” Derrick Hill said. “We go back. He has my respect. I’ve never told anybody that except you just now. He’s the same guy. The very same person now to me as he was back then at Valdosta State. The only difference is I don’t wrestle with him anymore.”
Derrick Hill said that Smart will always have his utmost respect.
“He’s just one of those unique guys,” Derrick Hill said “He’s about his business. Always. But he’s also going to have fun. I understand the workouts they are going through now. I went through the same things at Valdosta State. If Trey just so happens to choose to go there then I know he will get the right training that will take him to the next level and then the next level.”
Hill and his another family member serve as mentors to the nation’s No. 2 prospect at guard. Antwann Hill, another older sibling, was an All-State LB in 1996. That career was unfortunately cut short by a serious neck injury.
That gives the family two sources of knowledge to help steer the Houston County U.S. Army All-American pick.
“He’s just really calm and low-key,” Derrick Hill said. “He’s really taking his time and going over all his options. What you see and what you hear him say is basically how he feels. He’s taking all of this in stride.”
He said the Fromm connection was valid.
“He’s a big fan of Jake and the thought of playing with him again,” Derrick Hill said. “Jake is definitely an influence on him but at the end of the day it is going to be what’s best for Trey.”
His older brother felt UGA was “definitely” a good fit if he chose that path.
“We haven’t started having our talks just yet but I just want to get him out to different schools so he can see different things.”
Don’t look for Hill to make a decision before his senior year. Look for a summer Top 10 and a decision into his senior year. Hill will enroll early in January of 2018.
Georgia recruiting Hill the hardest. Auburn, Clemson, Florida State, Michigan and Southern Cal are also on him.
“There are a good few that are on Trey if not every day then every other day,” Derrick Hill said. “But Georgia recruits him hard every day. That’s hands down. Georgia is on him hard. The Bulldogs are open about it. Trey is who they absolutely want. They let that be known.”
— Jeff Sentell (@jeffsentell) March 26, 2017
Trey Hill’s current outlook
Derrick Hill says everyone notices his brother’s size. They tend to miss his footwork.
“He’s agile now,” his uncle said. “He has the feet of a defensive back. There’s something special about him. He’s made for this setting. Football is what he was born to do. He was extra big as a baby, but nobody thought he was going to be as athletic as he is.”
Hill plays left tackle at Houston County, but he feels that playing center and guard actually comes easier for him. The 4-star recruit hoped to visit LSU this week.
He said on Sunday that he doesn’t have any top schools, but that Clemson would be “high” on his list.
That recent family excursion to Georgia helped.
“I wanted my family to get up there and get a feel for it,” Trey Hill said. “They liked it. It was a plus for them.”
He said Fromm tells him that he will work hard at UGA. Those workouts will be a grind, but they will shape him into a better player.
Hill noted he doesn’t have a recruiting relationship quite like the one he has with Pittman. That’s why he can confidently say UGA will be in his Top 10 when he settles on it.
“Just the program,” Hill said. “They have a good program and a building program. I guess I’m a good fit there. I’m a good fit for most types of these schools.”