Want to attack every day with the latest UGA football recruiting info? That’s what the Intel brings. This entry offers a good first read on elite WR prospect Raymond Cottrell, his story and the strong ties he already has to UGA.
There are those recruiting stories that simply serve to document how an elite recruit feels about the Bulldogs. What that young man has to say bodes well in the pursuit of that specific prospect.
There are other times where what a recruit has to say speaks to a broader view of the program in general.
The Intel on Florida 2023 receiver Raymond Cottrell checks both of those boxes, including how the most recent home game greatly helped Georgia’s chances.
The Milton High resident traveled 360-odd miles to Athens for G-Day. He’s also been to see both LSU and FSU recently.
Cottrell’s thoughts coming in and out of G-Day will add fuel to the notion that a long-standing narrative about Georgia football might be a thing of the past.
Raymond Cottrell has been very impressed by Georgia receivers coach Cortez Hankton. (Raymond Cottrell/Instagram)
“They like to throw the ball,” Cottrell said before the game. “Kirby Smart really knows what he is doing. He always put his team in the right position every time. I just had to see it for myself.”
What was his big takeaway from the trip?
“That UGA is close to winning it all and I can definitely see me being a part of it,” he said.
He got to see Todd Monken’s offense guided by top-shelf quarterbacks JT Daniels, Carson Beck, Stetson Bennett IV and Brock Vandagriff.
“I can see myself being a part of it because they throw a lot and that black and red is a nice color and the way their coaches develop their players,” he told DawgNation this week. “You can definitely see it.”
That somehow all just hits different coming from a 6-foot-3 receiver who currently ranks as the nation’s No. 12 prospect at his position and the No. 69 overall recruit for the 2023 class.
What year is this again? Is the Georgia offensive reputation going full butterfly out of a pandemic cocoon?
Cottrell said he already feels like a priority to the Bulldogs.
“They are recruiting me pretty hard and I love that they’re showing love,” he said.
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Raymond Cottrell was able to visit UGA with a group of other elite 2023 and 2024 prospects from the Northern panhandle region of Florida. They all play together on the same 7-on-7 teams. (Courtesy photo)
The recruitment of Raymond Cottrell so far
Cottrell’s scouting profile indicates the type of prospect that has been going more often to the Alabamas, Clemsons, LSUs and Ohio States of the college football world.
Since Kirby Smart became the Georgia coach in December of 2015, those four programs have signed 37 wide receiver recruits with a top 100 overall national ranking like Cottrell. That’s an average of 9.25 players matching that metric per program among that quartet.
In contrast, Georgia has signed just six receivers which rated among the nation’s top 100 overall prospects in that span. That’s even with five of those six recruits coming in the 2019 and 2020 cycles.
Consider it an indicator. That national recruit who fancies himself in a modern vertical passing attack is now beginning to like what the Bulldogs have to offer in that regard.
I’m a physical twitchy receiver,” Cottrell said. “I can get out of my breaks like a little guy. I’m quick off the ball.”
“What’s most important to me at wide receiver is that you have to have strong hands and you have to dominate at all times whether you are getting the ball or not. Also, great wide receivers are not selfish and what I mean by that is great wide receivers block when they don’t get the ball. Either way, you gotta have a dog mentality at everything, including blocking.”
If there’s a better definition for what Georgia now needs to sign in every recruiting cycle, this reporter would love to see it.
Cortez Hankton has already connected with Cottrell.
“Coach Hankton is real,” Cottrell said. “He doesn’t speak nothing but the truth. He’s not one of those coaches that tells you what you want to hear. He’s going to tell what you don’t want to hear. He’s the most respectful dude I ever talk to.”
If it sounds like he holds a very high opinion of the Bulldogs, he does. Cottrell said that UGA is the only school right that he feels that strongly about.
He will look to make a quick return trip back to Athens.
“Whenever I can, I’ll go back right now if I could,” he said.
Raymond Cottrell is the nation’s No. 69 overall recruit for 2023 on the 247Sports Composite rankings. (Courtesy photo)
Raymond Cottrell: A few more things to know here
Cottrell plays football because he loves the game, but also for a greater purpose. He aims to provide a better life for his immediate family through football.
“What motivates me is my mother,” he said. “I use this slogan and I say feed your family.”
His family includes his mother Sherquise Riley and three younger brothers in Rayvon, Rayquan and Quatarious. Their ages range from seven to 14 years.
“My mom works very hard to put food on the table for us and when I look at my mom when she comes home and tired it hurts watching my mom look the way she looks,” Cottrell said. “That’s what motivates me to get to the league so I can make sure she never works again and I got three little brothers at home watching their big brother so I’m setting an example for them.”
Those four lives are most definitely his why for football.
“I play this sport because I know it’ll feed my family so my family can live great without stressing thinking what the next meal is going to be,” he said. “Everybody has got a sad story, but I’m going to go get everything for my people.”
That plight is not the only hardship he said he’s experienced. Cottrell has the initials “LLJA” on the top of both of his social media accounts. There’s a broken heart emoji next to those letters on his Twitter page.
What does that mean?
“Long live Joe Austin,” he said. “My track coach. Man, that was the best coach you can ask for. He’s the reason I started doing track. He died of COVID-19, but he’s resting in peace now. But I’ll keep [his memory] in the base of my heart.”
He said he knew Austin for about four years. His former track coach also served as the dean of students at his middle school.
“He made me live track,” Cottrell said. “He told me you always have to have that [fire] in you no matter what. That’s what made me a ‘Dawg until this point and I’ll forever live by it.”
Cottrell said he would like to be able to make his commitment by the end of his junior year. Check out his sophomore year highlight reel below.
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(the recent reads on DawgNation.com)