Friday, September 01, 2006
UGA, Pat strikes again. Thanks for the Tip
- Defensive lineman Cameron Heyward is a wanted man. He has over 30 scholarship offers and I think the school he is thinking about the most right now is Georgia. I was over at Peachtree Ridge for a practice recently and I talked to Cameron, some coaches, and players while there and they all seem to think UGA was the team to beat. Pittsburgh and LSU are two other teams to really watch out for and Florida may be on his mind as well. Heyward has a lot of interest in the Dawgs and I expect him to be in Athens soon for a football game, so he can check out the atmosphere. - In my opinion, Georgia is done at QB. Logan Gray committed to the Dawgs back in July that pretty much ended the pursuit of a QB. Gray is the athlete that I feel Georgia wanted to bring in. So many schools have had success with the dual-threat QB and Gray brings that to the table. I will be shocked if Josh Nesbitt doesn’t pick Georgia Tech. He grew up a Georgia fan and has been to Athens many times, but he knows his chances of playing QB in Athens are very slim. I think he thinks he could be the next Joe Hamilton in Atlanta and I look for him to be a Jacket. - One of the most asked questions recently is, who will Georgia sign at running back? Well, we all know Jonathan Dwyer committed to GT on Thursday. Caleb King, Enrique Davis, and Armando Allen are still out there with offers. Will Georgia get one of those three? King looks to be the best bet today, but a few other prospects to keep an eye on are Ed Imeokparia, Harvey English, Darell Norman, and Darius Marshall. I expect Georgia to sign one back this year if they can get that they really like. This will be an interesting subject to follow between now and signing day. - ANOTHER HUGE commitment for UGA this week. Aron White may not be well known in Athens yet, but I think he will be in about 2-3 years. He is so athletic and he has a ton of potential. He has great hands, moves so gracefully, and make a lot of big plays. White is a commitment you Dawg fans should be excited about. He is 6-foot-4, 215-pounds, has a 3.5 GPA, scored a 28 on the ACT last year in his first try, he has a great attitude, he is a hard worker, and he can’t wait to compete in Athens. Aron White is a name you will hear about in the future. - Christian Ballard knows both White and Gray and expect both of them to be working on him. Look for Ballard to visit Athens officially when the Dawgs host Colorado and I expect him to be on the same plane to Atlanta as White and Gray. Both of those guys are going to Georgia when they play Colorado for unofficial visits. I expect those two guys to let Ballard know that it isn’t that hard to leave your home state if you really want to. This race could get even more interesting now since two Missouri commits will be working on Ballard instead of one. - Not too many big name recruits will be in Athens this weekend, but one will. Cliff Matthews will be in Athens for his first game. He has camped there, he has visited there unofficially during the summer, but he has never seen what the game-day atmosphere is like in the classic city. Matthews will be in Athens this weekend, then in Columbia next weekend to see the Dawgs and Gamecocks tangle. At first, I thought UGA was the team to beat, but if I had to name one today, then it would be South Carolina. Look for this battle to be between two SEC Eastern schools this fall. Clemson may get a look and he talks about others like Florida, but I think it comes down to Georgia and Carolina. - One of the biggest names still uncommitted on Georgia’s radar is Eric Berry. Berry is a five-star athlete that has an offer list a lot of kids dream of. I once thought Tennessee could be the team for Berry, but over the last month, I have gotten the feeling may just be the team on top of Berry’s list. He has talked about Georgia, he has been naming them first when talking about schools, and he said he “would definitely” be at Georgia for the Tennessee game, the Georgia Tech game, and maybe another one. Tennessee is still in the mix as is Miami, and a few other programs, but I can honestly say I think Georgia is THE team to beat for Berry at this time. - How many more commitments can Georgia take? That is a million dollar question right now. They sit at 15 high school commitments and then they have 3 possible commitments at Hargrave as well. That is 18 total. If you ask me, I think UGA has room for about 5-7 more. Some attrition will take place, but just how much? Nobody knows yet, not even the UGA coaching staff. Could someone take a medical hardship, could a couple guys turn pro, or could Georgia ask a signee or two to gray-shirt? Some VERY BIG names are still out there like King, Heyward, Berry, Burnett, Little, Hebert, Wood, Burkes, Davis, Allen, Stafford, Wiggins, and others. It is going to be a VERY interesting next four months as we approach signing day. Team notes by Steve Patterson and Kelly Quinlan - We are going to catch hell for writing this, but there is A LOT of chatter from the practice fields that the pressure of being the starter is getting to Joe Tereshinski. It has impacted his play, and has the coaching staff concerned. - Speaking of the quarterbacks, we are hearing that heading into fall camp the coaching staff was really wanting to see Blake Barnes make a move. It makes the most sense when you consider he has been in the system a long time, has a bit of experience, and potential. He started out well, but then tapered off as camp continued. When that plan fell through, all eyes turned to Joe Cox with Joe T staying at the top of the depth chart and the eventual announcement of Cox being the number two. Really the only thing that happened in the end was that Barnes dropped, neither Cox or Matthew Stafford actually moved up. I stick to my guns that this whole story will continue to drag through September. - Apparently, Stafford's parents have expressed their concern with Mark Richt about their son being a co-three. The immediate reaction to this is for them to back off, but you have to wonder how strongly they feel, how Matthew feels about all of this, and if this is something that will continue. A side note, Matthew's mother at least will be at the Western Kentucky game with hopes of seeing her son play. - In the wake of Kade Weston's taking over the firs team spot next to Jeff Owens, Dale Dixson now says that he should have stayed on the offensive line when he was switched during fall camp. You will recall he moved from defensive tackle to offensive guard for one day, did not like it, and expressed his strong desire to move back to defense. Dixson said this week he should have stayed on offense so he would be ready to help the team there rather than as the number three defensive tackle when Ray Gant returns. - Chester Adams needs to back off of the buffet line and the coaches are on him to watch his weight. - There is no time table for guard Zeb McKinzey's return. The last thing the team needs is added strain to an already thin offensive line, but his shoulder continues to give him problems. - If I were a betting man, I would put money on Knowshon Moreno playing as a true freshman. I know it sounds crazy with three juniors ahead of him at tailback, but he has proven himself ready and as really impressed the coaching staff. You have to wonder where he would fit into the mix? How many carries does the fourth team tailback get anyway? Is this a question we will be asking Danny Ware in a month? - Mark Richt wants to know where have all the leaders gone, and is anyone planning on stepping into that role soon?