Want a daily lap through Georgia football recruiting? That’s what the Intel will bring at least five days a week. Today’s feature is a look to the future with big Class of 2020 offensive tackle prospect Paul Tchio.
DawgNation Intel Fridays are meant to follow the future. It’s a day that allows this space to focus on a big name that hasn’t had a big introduction to our web pages as of yet.
Paul Tchio, a hulking 6-foot-5 offensive line prospect from Milton High in Metro Atlanta, definitely fits that description. The unrated Class of 2020 prospect is a very big name to know in more ways than one.
Let’s start with his last name. It isn’t as hard to pronounce as it appears to be.
“The ‘c’ and ‘h’ are silent,” Tchio said, repeating a drill he’s done hundreds of times. “It is just Tio.”
The first of many things that come to mind with the Tchio narrative for me would be a photo op. The 325-pound prospect will be in Athens on Saturday for the Mississippi State game.
That will be his second UGA game this fall. Tchio also was in town for the Appalachian State victory. There was a moment prior to the game when 5-star senior Jamaree Salyer walked over to Tchio.
Those two chatted freely and posed for several pictures.
That side-by-side comparison between the nation’s top-rated senior offensive lineman and a first-year high school sophomore starter is telling. The fact that Tchio recently celebrated his 15th birthday also stands out.
Tchio isn’t where he needs to be yet, but his size bodes well for his future potential on Saturdays. His first offer was from UGA. Maryland did the same about a week later.
That first offer was significant.
“It was great when I got that offer from Georgia,” Tchio said. “UGA is my favorite school. So for them to be my first offer, that was really pretty cool.”
How UGA became first school to offer Paul Tchio
Why was Georgia the first school to offer Tchio? It was simply a matter of good team recruiting. Area recruiter Dell McGee was watching Milton in spring practice. He was there to check out 2019 4-star safety Joseph Charleston and several other strong college prospects, including junior OLB Allen Walker.
But McGee spotted Tchio. He couldn’t help but notice his size. He shared a brief synopsis with Georgia line coach Sam Pittman.
Tchio was invited to attend a Georgia camp this summer. He made the one in July.
How did he “catch an offer” from Georgia?
“Coach Pittman told me what I had to do in that camp to earn an offer,” Tchio said. “He said he wanted to see me be explosive out of my stance, to have quick feet and to use my hips very well. I was able to do all of that for him at Georgia to catch that offer.”
Georgia does not yet have a commitment for its 2020 class. Could Tchio be the first?
“I’m not going to lie,” Tchio said. “I have thought about that. It was a couple of weeks ago and like the second week of school. I think it was like the week of the 20th and I was really thinking about committing. That’s because I had the offer from my dream school already. Why wait?”
He’s just a sophomore in high school. Tchio is a first-year starter at that, but he does display some maturity beyond those years. That’s aside from being able to cook a large variety of his own meals.
“I thought about it and then I felt that I didn’t want to rush the process,” Tchio said. “I just wanted to take my time and see how everything turns out.”
That said, he does already have a clear view of how things stand in what already sounds like the second quarter of his recruiting process.
Coach’s outlook on Paul Tchio
Adam Clack took over the program at Milton this year after spending several years at West Forsyth.
It was interesting how he took a look at the returning talent on the team while he was interviewing for the job.
Tchio was one of many guys who jumped out to him on film.
“You just see the size with that,” Clack said. “But the other thing is the explosiveness. He can move, man. Paul would really be a heck of a defensive tackle.”
He’s also gotten to know Tchio off the field in his first season.
“Paul is that gentle giant,” Clack said. “He loves to kid around. He’s probably one of the kindest kids in our program.”
The young sophomore is already making strides in the weight room.
“He can probably squat close to 400 pounds already easy,” Clack said. “He can power clean over 250 easily as a sophomore. I mean he’s a big boy, but he’s not just a bunch of fatty tissue or a doughboy. He’s going to be a real strong guy.”
Paul Tchio has a clear timeline for a sophomore
Where does everything stand for him?
“Georgia is on top of the mountain but I took a visit to Clemson [earlier this month] and I definitely liked it. That was a great visit. I definitely liked Clemson and all their facilities.”
The Tigers have yet to extend a scholarship offer, though. It would not be surprising to see him make his college commitment by this time next season.
“Once I get my sophomore tape posted out and everything I will see where that goes,” he said. “I’ll take a couple more visits in the off-season and get everything settled out. I think I will be committed going into my junior season, and I’d definitely say I’m planning to commit by the end of my junior year.”
Tchio comes from a very athletic family. His mother, father and older brother all played soccer growing up. His family moved to America from Cameroon approximately five years before he was born.
Elysee Mbem-Bosse, his cousin, signed to play with Michigan. Mbem-Bosse, a 3-star recruit in the Class of 2016, was rated by the 247Sports composite as the nation’s No. 19 prospect at ILB after his senior season at Cedar Grove High School.
5-star commit confirms visit on Saturday
I wouldn’t expect 5-star quarterback Justin Fields to tip his hand about his visit plans and whether he will be in Athens again on Saturday night.
If he shows up, he’ll get another chance to hang out with 5-star RB Zamir White. The nation’s No. 6 overall prospect shared his visit plan on Twitter Friday morning.
That pushes DawgNation’s latest count in the 5-star prospect category to five for the game Saturday night.
Athens bound tomorrow! 🐶
— Zamir White (ZEU$) (@zeus1_34) September 22, 2017
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