Want to attack every day with the latest Georgia football recruiting info? That’s the Intel. This entry is about the first visit made by 5-star junior WR Jalen Hale to UGA.
Jalen Hale was offered by UGA way back on December 24, 2020. That was a pretty impressive reflection of future potential for a class of 2023 recruit back then.
The Bulldogs have stayed in the mix with the native Texan since that holiday offer. Hale dropped a top 12 last December and UGA was in the mix with Alabama, Florida, LSU, Michigan, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Ole Miss, Texas, Texas A&M and USC.
The 6-foot-2, 180-pound rising senior now ranks as a 5-star, the nation’s No. 5 WR and the No. 33 overall recruit on the 247Sports Composite ratings.
He lived up to that billing in 2021 with 50 catches for 1,154 yards and 14 touchdowns.
Hale was back in Athens on Tuesday and the Bulldogs appear to have helped themselves a lot in that chase. That’s not just because Hale took the time to try on both the all-black and all-red uniform variants for his visit day photoshoot.
“Great visit,” he said. “Great coaches. Beautiful facility. All around good vibe. I will be coming back.”
It certainly helped Georgia’s chances at landing one of Hale’s five upcoming official visits.
The best part about the visit was the coaches and the atmosphere for Hale.
“This was my first visit here,” he told DawgNation about UGA on Tuesday. “I will be back for an official. I’m getting my other visits together.”
Consider that to be another ringing endorsement for the return of wide receivers coach Bryan McClendon.
“He is a great coach,” Hale said. “Very knowledgeable about the game and position plus I had communication with him already.”
No need to glance back up the page. Oregon was also a part of that top 12 set by Hale last December.
“He gave me an offer when he was at Oregon so I already knew and talked with him previously,” he said.
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5-star WR Jalen Hale poses for photos on his UGA unofficial visit on March 15, 2022, in Athens, Ga. (Instagram)
Jalen Hale: Why a visit like that was important so early in this cycle
Hale offers Georgia the chance to sign the first 5-star receiver for the program since George Pickens in 2019.
Prior to that, the Bulldogs had not signed a 5-star recruit that was rated solely as a receiver since Marlon Brown in 2009.
What kind of college fit is Hale looking for?
“A chance to come in and help the program, a comfortable feel and surrounding myself with good coaches I can learn from and good people,” he said.
The Bulldogs must restock their receiving core with elite talent in the 2023 recruiting cycle. While Georgia did sign an impressive pair of 4-stars in 2022 in C.J. Smith and De’Nylon Morrissette, those two were not rated among the nation’s top 200 overall prospects.
Morrissette and Smith were the highest-rated out of a group of four WR prospects in the 2022 class.
Georgia also signed a pair of 3-stars at receiver in its 2021 class, but freshman A.D. Mitchell showed that stars alone do not qualify whether a young man can make a championship play when called upon.
Georgia already has one top 100 overall prospect commitment to play receiver in 4-star Raymond Cottrell for its 2023 class. He’s rated as the nation’s No. 92 overall recruit on the 247Sports Composite ratings.
Check out the junior highlight reel for Hale below. He’s also a dynamic player on the basketball court.
McClendon can definitely utilize a player with that type of talent between the hedges.
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