Bo Hughley: Auburn wants him bad, but the elite OT commit points to two reasons why he’s still a ‘Dawg
Want to attack every day with the latest Georgia football recruiting info? That’s the Intel. This rep has the latest with 4-star OT commitment Bo Hughley. He ranks as the nation’s No. 11 OT and the No. 90 overall prospect for 2023 on the 247Sports Composite ratings.
Auburn wanted to know. Nebraska wanted to know.
Those schools put on their weight belts with UGA commitment Bo Hughley this month. They hosted him on official visits. They wanted to pull him away from Athens.
The question: Are you still a ‘Dawg?
Heck, even Quavo wanted to know that answer. He even asked him on a recent Instagram comment thread.
That post, which has since been deleted, came when the Migos rapper took notice of the orange and white heart emojis Hughley had been dropping on some pics of his Auburn official.
To paraphrase, he wondered if Hughley was a bird. As in War Eagle.
“Imma dawg baby,” was the reply Hughley had, complete with a laughing-out-loud emoji.
That’s not to say the process of choosing a school and remaining committed has not weighed on him.
“Honestly, this is one of the hardest processes of my life,” Hughley said. “I’ve never been like this. Been through this. Right now, I’m committed to Georgia. That’s home. Locked in. If anything ever changes, everybody will see. But right now? Georgia.”
“I’m still taking visits, though. Why not? I only get to do this once.”
It would take one school deftly building a relationship, over the phone and in person, with his potential position coach and future head coach. Over and over.
That’s where any flip attempt would have to begin.
He says Georgia has a different feeling. Other schools work at building a vibe. With great care and effort, they can manage that. Nebraska hosted him on a great official. It went very well.
“I like it there at Nebraska,” he said. “I like it a lot.”
But in the end, that’s a long way away. Especially if he needed to get home fast to his Mom or his family.
With the ‘Dawgs, that vibe happens organically.
“Georgia just has a different feeling,” he said. “It is just how the players treat you and the coaches treat you. It is not even anything special. No special effort. It is just how the coaches act. The environment. It is just different.”
“Like Auburn for example. They have a nice environment. Everything is chill. But it is not Georgia.”
He made it seem like Georgia creates that home/chill feeling without really trying to. Was that it?
“Yeah, that’s it,” he said. “Can’t say it any better than that.”
Yet there’s one simple thing that keeps him a ‘Dawg.
“Kirby Smart,” he said.
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What Kirby Smart does to keep Bo Hughley locked to Georgia
Hughley doesn’t know how to explain his connection to the Georgia coach. At least not initially.
“I don’t really know,” Hughley said. “It is hard to say. It is better off to just share an example.”
“He’s like when I go up there and it is as soon as I step in the building,” he said.
The nation’s No. 11 OT then snaps his fingers. He makes a gesture with his hands that feels like what would be the perfect sign language symbol for when Jalen Carter takes off after an Oregon Duck.
Hughley even added a sound effect. It sounded like a rifle shot.
“Kirby is like ‘There goes Bo’ when I step into the building,” Hughley said while using that sound effect. “He walks up to me. He’ll grab me. We will be playing and play fighting. It is just different. I can’t name another coach like him.”
When asked which schools are still threats to Georgia, he felt it best to rewrite the question.
“I don’t consider them to be threats,” Hughley said. “Those are my options. You could say that those are my other options.”
But he’s also a teenager. Still looking to take advantage of this one moment in his athletic career.
“You can also put out there that anybody out there that is still looking to offer me they can,” he said. “That’s schools like Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State and Alabama.”
Hughley has two official visits left. He knows he can’t take officials to schools that have yet to offer.
South Carolina just hosted him for an unofficial visit. They didn’t offer him, though.
He wonders if those other schools just do not want to get into the ring. To recruit against the national champions. For an elite prospect from the state of Georgia.
Especially one that has been committed since September of 2021.
Hughley said he would like to play with a lot of guys in the 2023 class. Arch Manning. Caleb Downs. Justice Haynes. Jamaal Jarrett. Madden Sanker.
He visited UGA on the second weekend in June. What was that official like?
“Home,” he said.
He does know Quavo.
“That’s my boy,” he said.
Hughley was in his youth football program coming up.
“He did have something to say about all that orange and white heart emojis,” Hughley said.
Pro tip: If Auburn and Nebraska have any worldwide rap artists working for them on social media, it would help.
“I need some Rod Wave, man,” he said. “If anybody can get Rod Wave, then I would love them forever. But for real, on a serious note, I’m just ready for signing day, man. For real.”
Hughley will graduate in December and enroll in January of 2023. He tries to get to Athens any time he can. Look for him to be at the annual end of July cookout event with a lot of other big-timers in the class, too.
Stacy Searels, in the first year of his second stint in Athens, has served the ‘Dawgs well. The offensive line coach in Athens is still a good fit for Hughley.
“That’s my boy,” he said of Searels. “That’s been my boy before he got to Georgia. I already knew that he and I were going to get along.”
He’s already linked up with recent Georgia commit Joshua “Doogie” Miller out of Virginia.
“That’s my boy, too,” Hughley said. “He’s just mean as heck.”
NIL: What does Bo Hughley think about that?
We are in the name, image and likeness (NIL) era. There were reports swirling earlier this week about how Miami had upped the QB paycheck race up to $9.5 million for 4-star Jaden Rashada.
What if Auburn’s collective broke out the war chest? Or Nebraska?
Hughley doesn’t feel that will sway him.
“That stuff doesn’t really matter to me,” he said. “I feel like just being who I am and on the choices and decisions I make, wherever I land, I feel like my face is going to become big. NIL is going to come regardless.”
Auburn and Nebraska could play that depth card. Hughley could contribute in his first year at both programs. Maybe even start late into his freshman year.
That won’t likely happen that fast at Georgia.
Hughley can still look at the example set by former 5-star Broderick Jones in Athens. Both of those are big and agile young men.
“Everybody looks at him and sees me,” he said. “Everybody looks at me and sees him.”
They are from the Atlanta area.
Jones didn’t play right away. He was also wooed by schools like Auburn and Arkansas and Miami. He decided to stay locked with Georgia. He signed, waited out a redshirt freshman year and stepped in as a plug-and-play left tackle for key stretches of the 2021 national championship run.
“That boy played in the national championship,” Hughley said.
This is now the money year for Jones at Georgia. To go get that NFL bag.
“That’s my boy, man,” Hughley said. “But Broderick and I don’t really talk about his path. It is just we are on the same path. He is from Atlanta. I’m from Atlanta. We are from the bottom part of Atlanta and we are coming from there and we are going up. He went to Georgia. He’s making his name. He’s fixing to get a bag and go to the NFL. I’m just trying to do the same.”
Senior year surge: Bo Hughley looks like a different player
Watching Hughley at practice this week, he looks better. For starters, he’s slimmer.
He has been working to change his body. He’s still right over the 6-foot-7 mark, but a change is going to come with his physique. When it came to dips last fall, he couldn’t do a single one.
Now he said he can do 10.
“We just ran 25 hills,” he said after practice on Tuesday. “I ran all of them. Sprinted all of them.”
Hughley was over 300 pounds at G-Day this fall. He’s right at 290 now. It looks like he is shifting the weight around.
“We do a lot of running here but I still do a lot of eating,” Hughley said.
Langston Hughes coach Daniel Williams has seen a lot of growth. His punch is getting better. He’s getting more violent at the point of attack.
“He’s growing up,” Williams said. “Even since spring, he has grown. He’s taken a lot better care of his body than in the past. Not saying he didn’t in the past, but we’re seeing more definition and more muscle tone. He’s conditioning with the big skill guys now. Not the O-line anymore.”
“As far as maturity levels, he’s going into his senior year. He’s now doing everything that comes with that and is leading our team.”
Langston Hughes is one of the top three teams in Georgia this year. Easy. No matter the classification. Their junior QB, Prentiss Noland, is one of the state’s five best at his position. Clearly. That’s with two seasons left to play.
The Panthers lost to powerhouse Buford in the 6A state finals a year ago. The Wolves got them 21-20 after a potential game-winning field goal as time expired was unsuccessful.
He’s motivated. Even if Buford has now moved up to 7A. This will be great experience for Hughley on another championship-caliber team.
“The goal this year is not to win the state championship,” Hughley said. “It is to win the national championship. Right now we are in the position to not only win the state but to also win the national championship. I feel our goal as a team is to also win the national championship.”
There are several big-name prospects on his team. Noland for starters. Senior safety Terrance Love is an Auburn commit and a top 250 prospect. Josh Horton, a 3-star DL, has offers from around the South. 4-star TE Jelani Thurman, a UGA legacy, is the nation’s No. 9 TE. He could wind up at Ohio State.
Jordan Thompson, a 2024 LB, has offers from Central Florida and Texas.
The left tackle, Dontrell Glover, is already a 6-foot-4 prospect in the Class of 2025. He already has verbal scholarship offers from LSU and Georgia Tech, among others.
Receiver Robert Lockhart is committed to Jackson State but has offers from Maryland, Western Kentucky and Utah. Langston Hughes returns seven starters on offense and eight starters back on defense from that stout 2021 team.
Hughley doesn’t care what he will play in college. He lines up at right tackle for Langston Hughes. That’s because he is the blind-side protector for the lefthander in Noland.
“I told coach Searels where ever he is comfortable with me I will go play it,” Hughley said. “But I do prefer the left side.”
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