Todd Monken to the NFL: What impact does that have on Georgia football recruiting?
Want to attack every day with the latest Georgia football recruiting info? That’s the Intel. This rep chronicles the reaction from some key 2023 and 2024 recruiting targets after the decision made by offensive coordinator Todd Monken to return to the NFL.
The Todd Monken decision to return to the NFL dominated the news cycle today.
That’s for his decision to give up his post as the offensive coordinator of the reigning two-time national champions to call plays on Sunday once again with the Baltimore Ravens.
Monken is leaving. Former offensive coordinator Mike Bobo now has the reins of a high-powered Georgia offense again.
What does that mean? Well, there’s a lot to cover there.
Monken meant offense. He delivered that averaging approximately 40 points per game over his last two seasons in Athens. That attracted the current recruiting class and also the potential of how the ‘Dawgs could augment an already stout offensive attack with the 2024 recruiting cycle.
With that, it is logical to start with the nation’s No. 1 overall prospect for 2024. That’s the 5-star Arizona QB target, Dylan Raiola.
This news was not unexpected to the Raiola camp. That’s for a lot of factors. Dylan’s father, Dominic, spent 14 seasons in the NFL with the Detroit Lions. He gets it.
The Monken to the NFL talk had been something they had been keeping tabs on. They knew it was a possibility.
“You can’t do what he’s done and stay in college ball,” Dominic Raiola said on Tuesday. “Too many NFL jobs open. The turnover rate is out of control right now in the college profession.”
There is a connection already with the new playcaller in Athens. That dates back to when close family friend Matthew Stafford was slinging the ball around the yard for the ‘Dawgs. Bobo was his QB coach and OC in Athens.
Dominic Raiola spent the final chunk of his career snapping to Stafford in Detroit. Those two families are close.
“We’ve gotten to know Bobo over the past year,” Dominic Raiola said. “Instant connection with him being Matthew’s QB coach. He’s been a head coach and has been around and has Georgia roots.”
The 5-star QB was on the same page.
“With the success that Coach Monken has had, it comes as no surprise that he’s back in the NFL,” Dylan Raiola said. “Happy for him and his family.”
The subject of playing for a coach other than Monken at UGA had become a real possibility for the Raiolas. He is still very undecided as they ponder the potential fit there in Athens. He’s set to take a very important visit to UGA that is slated for March 18. That’s the first day of spring practice in Athens.
It was highly unlikely that Monken, with his name in demand for NFL folks, was going to be around for the 2024 and 2025 seasons with Raiola.
That’s the feeling of the top-rated prospect in the 2023 class. What could the lone remaining target in the 2023 class be thinking about Monken’s move today?
DawgNation was able to get a good gauge of what 5-star TE Duce Robinson felt about any potential Monken departure earlier this month.
“We love Coach Monken,” Robinson said. “We love his offense and we love what he does. But there are a lot of other things to love about Georgia, too. Whether he decides to stay or gets a job in the NFL, we love Georgia regardless.”
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Todd Monken: How do the 2024 commits feel about today’s news?
Colquitt County receiver Ny Carr is part of the offensive upgrade the ‘Dawgs are planning for the 2024 cycle.
The ‘Dawgs already have the nation’s No. 1 recruiting class for 2024. They have a strong hold on the No. 1 spot already and it is still very early in the cycle.
Part of that has to do with players set to play on the offensive side of the ball like Carr. The nation’s No. 9 WR and No. 71 overall recruit has been committed to UGA since last July. He’s one of four offensive prospects that rank among the nation’s top 100 recruits for 2024 that have committed to the G.
Does the departure of Monken affect the way he feels about the ‘Dawgs?
‘No, sir,” he said. “Not at all. Next man up.”
When asked about Monken, he hoped that Bobo got the chance to replace him.
“I have a strong relationship with Coach Bobo,” Carr said. “So I trust him as my coach to get the job done.”
When Carr was informed that Bobo already had been announced by Georgia as the next hire, he was stoked.
“Ready to see what this playbook looks like,” he said.
What stands out to him about Bobo?
“I mean he’s from South Georgia,” Carr said. “What is there not to like about him?”
Carr sounded enthused about the chance to play with 4-star Cass High receiver Sacovie White. He couldn’t wait to team up with White and do damage to SEC defenses in the years to come. White is also already committed to the 2024 class in Athens.
“We are going to destroy people,” Carr said.
With Carr, the feeling was that Georgia has reached the point where his connection to the program is more than one coach or one single thing about UGA.
“I’m in touch with the whole staff,” Carr said. “We just build as time goes by. [I’m] doing my job helping recruit other top-notch players like myself.”
Carr had some of the strongest takes about the Monken/Bobo news on Tuesday. But he wasn’t the only one.
White was also revved up to play with Carr. He also understands how college football can be a business. The type of success that Georgia has had of late was certain to bring about staff changes for its high-profile assistants.
“I feel like it was the best decision for him and his family,” White said of the Monken news. “I know that we lost a big piece in Georgia’s offense and I also know that being around the UGA coaches they probably knew it was coming. But we are going to miss him. But I know that there is another OC coming and we are only going to grab the best of the best.”
He had already gotten to know Bobo a bit.
“I do know coach Bobo and I’ve heard he’s had some experience being a quarterback at the University of Georgia,” White said. “But I feel like we’ll click like coach Monken and I did.”
The transition here does not affect the way he feels about UGA, he said.
“Not much,” he said. “I’m still locked in but it does give a lot bit of thought about what other coaches plan on leaving after that. His leaving was a big game changer.”
Receivers coach Bryan McClendon is another UGA alum and a former Bulldog receiver. That’s the position group to pay attention to here. Georgia losing “BMac” would likely affect White’s commitment more than the Bobo and Monken news today.
He wants to play for McClendon.
“Based on the conversations we’ve had he seems to be staying,” White said. “Looking forward to Ny Carr and I coming in and stepping up during that 2024 season.”
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Ryan Puglisi, the 2024 QB commit, has expressed in the past that he understands that NFL teams were always going to be coming after Monken.
“I love Coach Monken,” Puglisi said on Tuesday. “He was very good to my family and I. I wish him nothing but the best in the future and I hope he kills it where ever he goes. I am still super excited about the future of the Georgia Bulldogs and I already have a great relationship with Coach Bobo.”
If it sounds like Puglisi was saved for the end here, that’s the case. That’s because we know the way he feels about UGA by now. He regards Athens as “home” and the Monken news was likely not to move the dial with him very much if it did indeed become a reality.
If he’s not concerned with the nation’s No. 1 overall prospect coming to Athens to compete with him in the 2024 class, then a coordinator change wasn’t likely going to send him searching for answers today.
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