Eric Reed Jr: Former Ole Miss commit previews his official to UGA
Louisiana prospect Eric Reed Jr. will be one of many official visitors this weekend at Georgia.
The list could climb up to eight official visitors for the last weekend before the early signing period comes on Wednesday.
Reed is an intriguing option for a lot of reasons, including the following:
- Lists Auburn, Georgia, LSU and Notre Dame as his final four. That said, Reed has only has visited Auburn so far and UGA is this weekend.
- He was a former Ole Miss commit under new Georgia offensive line coach Matt Luke.
- The Calvary Baptist standout (Shreveport, La.) plans to sign at 3 p.m. on December 18 after having only taken officials to Auburn and Georgia.
- Rates as the nation’s No. 12 safety, but played extensively at cornerback for Calvary Baptist. The 247Sports Composite ranks Reed as the nation’s No. 16 safety and No. 175 overall prospect.
- He’s a cornerback but he’s physical so he can plug-and-play in a lot of roles in an SEC secondary
- The popular 247Sports “Crystal Ball” feature currently lists Georgia with 75 percent of the picks from analysts and recruiting reporters from across the country
- Reed will be at Georgia this weekend with his mother and father on his official. It will be his first trip back since he took an unofficial for the Notre Dame game.
- Before he started playing varsity football, he was given No. 1 by his high school coaching staff. When a freshman gets that digit before playing on the varsity, that’s usually a very good sign. He’s worn that number ever since.
- He also plays basketball and track for Calvary Baptist and is not an early enrollee candidate
That’s a lot of things that cover a wide survey of what most of DawgNation might know about him, but it is time to introduce another: Manners.
Reed was able to speed turn through a wide-ranging conversation about his recruiting options and makeup while peppering those “yes sirs” in there AND also the latest “Call of Duty” video game.
Eric Reed Jr: More than just his recruiting stuff
Those bulleted items above provide the standard hurry-up (with a few more details) of what can be scanned about Reed online. He was able to communicate so effectively because he feels he has a future in thinking on his feet.
That’s evident by his 3.0 grade-point average, but also his planned college major.
“Sports broadcasting or a sports analyst,” he said.
The reason why he plays football is pretty standard among his peers. But that doesn’t make it any less meaningful.
“Really it is just to one day be able to take care of my family,” Reed Jr. said. “To be able to get all the things that I might have wanted in life. Or they might have wanted in life when I was younger.”
We’ll start giving you a good look at one of this weekend’s official visitors by supplying a link to check out his senior tape.
— Eric Reed Jr (@EricReedJr3) December 9, 2019
Emotional. Physical. Those are the two words he initially used to describe his game.
“Another thing I would say is that I work through my hips,” Reed Jr. said. “Always. Because I used to be stiff in the beginning because I was originally a receiver and then they switched my position. So I’ve been playing defense ever since.”
His coaches made that switch when he was a freshman. That was to take advantage of his skills, his physicality and his foot speed. The 6-foot, 195-pound prospect was timed at a laser 4.62 seconds in the 40 back in April at an Opening regional camp.
Reed shared why he chose Ole Miss in the first place.
“It was really just a family environment and I like those family environments where ever I go,” he said. “Where ever I go I don’t want to feel like I am just there at the school. I want to feel like I’m a part of something and I will be taken care of like family on and off the field. Not just on the field.”
“I want to be around good people who want to help me be a better me.”
Why did he de-commit? That decision came after Luke was not retained as the head coach.
“I want to say I was already feeling a certain way before but that really just sealed it off when [Matt Luke] left and then nobody knew if they were going to keep their job or not,” Reed Jr. said. “I didn’t know what was going on and I didn’t want to just get there and then something else happens and be stuck. So I just had to do what is best for me.”
When Matt Luke was hired to take over as offensive line coach at Georgia, he could only marvel at that turn life took for the both of them.
“I was just like that is crazy,” Reed Jr. said. “But I realized with that I guess that is how this business works.”
How much does Luke being on staff help the Bulldogs here?
“I take my official to Georgia this weekend so we will just see where it goes from there,” he said.
That will be important to his overall decision. He can’t say for certain where he is at right now with his thinking on his college selection process.
“After this OV I will see where I am at,” he said. “I don’t want to jump too far ahead.”
Eric Reed breaks down his current thoughts on UGA
He is aware of what the Georgia program has done over the last few seasons.
“Georgia is a big program and they are in the SEC championship [game] almost every year,” he said. “So when they offered me it was really big. That excited me. It just motivated me to go harder.”
Reed was at the Notre Dame with his girlfriend back on Sept. 21.
“She liked it,” he said. “She liked it a lot.”
That visit was almost 12 weeks ago, but it still stuck in his mind.
“Really just like the fans,” he said of what he remembers from that visit. “Just the way the game was. A lot of the fans were very active as they started coming back. A lot of the people were just there and really into it.”
If he’s being honest, he feels the Bulldogs didn’t really become a factor in his process until after that game.
“I was at that game and I had to look harder at Georgia after the game,” he said. “It made me look harder.”
Georgia’s pitch to him is one of opportunity. The staff checks on him daily and tells him how much they need him. Defensive backs coach Charlton Warren made an in-home visit on Wednesday to see him.
“They’ve got guys leaving and they need me to come in and make a big impact in the secondary,” he said.
Reed believes the recruiting industry rates him as a safety because he doesn’t get a lot of interceptions. Just tackles.
“But whenever I am in the games I don’t really get targeted a lot,” he said. “So I really can’t do anything about that.”
This weekend won’t be too strenuous for him. He doesn’t have a long list of questions.
“I’m just really going to go there to have fun,” he said.
Reed checked out Auburn for the annual “Iron Bowl” game with Alabama. That was certainly another “whoa nellie” chapter in the history of that great rivalry game. It was a trip that he “enjoyed it a lot” along his official visit.
“It is a hard decision thinking about Georgia and Auburn and all of these schools,” he said. “After I take my Georgia official visit, then I will know in my head where every school is and how they all compare.”
— Eric Reed Jr (@EricReedJr3) December 5, 2019
What will one of those four schools be getting when he comes to campus?
“They are going to be getting somebody who doesn’t cause any trouble and they are just goin to come in and work hard every day,” he said. “Just a guy who will give it his all.”