Rashan Gary: UGA still in sweepstakes for nation’s No. 1 prospect

Rashan Gary

UGA is still in the sweepstakes for Rashan Gary, the nation’s No. 1-rated overall prospect.

The 5-star defensive tackle from New Jersey visited UGA this past summer for its “Dawg Night” prospect camp, and the Bulldogs made a good impression. While Gary hasn’t revealed his top five or list of official visits yet, UGA appears to be in good shape.

Gary’s mother, Jennifer Coney, acknowledged to the AJC on Tuesday night that her son is still interested in the Bulldogs though it remains to be seen how much exactly. However, she appears to be high on UGA.  

“I love the coaches,” Coney told the AJC. “I love (UGA defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt), and his family … (Defensive line coach Tracy Rocker) and (head coach Mark Richt). The young men we met on the football team. I like UGA as a whole.”

It has been reported that Gary is considering a little over 10 programs, including LSU, Auburn and USC, among others. However, his mother says his recruitment remains wide open.

“Rashan hasn’t sat down to break down anything,” Coney said. “So, at this point he’s considering every place that he’s visited. He hasn’t broken down anything. It’s really open for him because he hasn’t finished taking his visits, so it wouldn’t be fair to narrow down a list that he hasn’t even compiled yet. It’s late in the process, but he still wants to take a couple of visits. He’ll narrow it down. Maybe not as soon as people would like.”

Where Gary could end up taking his official visits is just as much of a mystery to the recruiting world as it is to his mother, too, who says they’ve yet to discuss where he’ll go this fall. How quickly her son is able to narrow down his finalists could also be determined by how soon he’s even able to schedule his visits.

“In a perfect world, you have Friday games, and you can get all these officials done,” Coney said. “But time is not our friend, and he plays on Saturdays.”

According to one published report, the 6-foot-4, 311-pound defensive tackle out of Paramus Catholic, N.J., plans to take an official visit to Auburn on Nov. 28 and another prior to the Under Armour All-America game on Jan. 2.

Coney tells the AJC, however, that nothing has been confirmed.

“That’s something we’d like to do, but nothing has been set in stone yet,” Coney said.

Unlike many schools, Paramus Catholic plays primarily on Saturdays, which makes scheduling visits that much harder. The Paladins face a bye week on Sept. 26, which appears to be the only time in-season Gary could take an official, but his mother says they haven’t discussed that possibility.  

A visit to Auburn on Nov. 28 could also prove challenging if Paramus Catholic makes it to the postseason, as playoffs are held that same weekend.

“He doesn’t play Friday night football,” Coney said. “So, it’s going to be really hard to get an official, especially during the season. And in December, he’s going to have to take his ACTs, and he’s going to the Under Armour All-America game. That’s really going to cut things back. He’s going to have January to make this happen for himself.”

What also remains to be seen is where Gregory Little, a 5-star offensive tackle from Texas, ends up committing. Little, the No. 2 player in the country, and Gary have grown very close throughout their respective recruitments.

Coney didn’t mince her words when asked about the possibility of the two best players in the nation coming together.

“Wouldn’t that be great?,” Coney said laughing. “Greg and Rashan have become friends. They’ve been to camps together. I don’t know what Greg and Rashan talk about. They do speak often.”

As it stands, though, nothing appears to be set in stone. Coney says her son doesn’t have any leaders and isn’t leaning one way or another. She tells the AJC that her family will convene at some point soon to make arrangements for this fall.

“Honestly, I don’t think Rashan is leaning anywhere,” Coney said. “He’s taken visits. He has a great affinity for these programs, coaches and their football program, but I think Rashan is still open. He doesn’t have a favorite, but he likes several of the programs.”

Gary plans to announce his college decision at the Under Armour All-America game in January, but he could hold out until signing day. 

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