Tony, I understand you are no longer a commit to Tennessee?
"That's right, I dropped Tennessee and committed to Georgia Tech. Georgia Tech was the school that I chose Tennessee over and when Coach Fulmer stepped down, it was very easy for me to let Georgia Tech know I will be coming there next year."
So, Coach Fulmer stepping down was the reason you changed your commitment to Georgia Tech?
"Yes, that is one of the reasons and probably the main one. I also like Coach Johnson a lot. He made me feel welcome and wanted when I was there and it was a hard choice to make when I gave Tennessee my verbal. The success Coach Johnson has had at Georgia Tech opened my eyes a little too. He knows how to coach and get the best out of his players. Plus my recruiting and position coach, Coach Spencer is one that I really like too."
What did Coach Johnson have to say when you gave him the news?
"He was very, very happy. He told me that I would be an excellent addition to the team and he looked forward to having me on his offensive line."
What position on the line will you be playing?
"Coach Johnson says he wants me at left tackle and that is what I play on my high school team. That will be a big plus for me when I get to Georgia Tech. I'll know the position real well and I'll learn the way Coach Johnson, Coach Spencer and Coach Sewak want their lineman to block. I'm a fast learner so I feel I can tribute right away. Coach Johnson feels the same way when we talked on the phone."
How about your family, are they happy that you changed to Georgia Tech?
"Yes sir, they are very happy about it. Most of my family lives in Atlanta and they will not have to go far to see me play. That is another huge plus in changing to Georgia Tech. I was joking with my Mom and said don't pull an American Pie moment and just show up, you have to call me and let me know you are coming to see me."
Have there been any other schools trying to get you to commit to them or come visit them?
"Yes there have been a few schools. I told Mike just today that Coach Bobo from Georgia was trying to get me to come to Georgia and I told him that I wasn't interested, that I am firm and solid on this decision. I told him thanks but no thanks, I am very happy with this decision and will become a Yellow Jacket come signing day."
Sounds like you and Mike (Gilliard) are still close friends even though you are both committed to rival schools?
"Yes sir we are. I was joking around with Mike today and told him when Georgia Tech and Georgia play that I will be on the playing field next year and watching him on the side lines as he's being redshirted. I told him that when he does get on the field he better look out for me as I will be blocking him now instead of taking on lineman in front of him like I did in high school. It was all in fun as Mike is a good guy but he's on the other team now."
So, this decision is final and firm?
"Yes sir, it is. No other school needs to call me as I am finished with my recruiting and very happy to be playing for Georgia Tech. It was a unusual way to get to Tech but after thinking it over, I feel this is the best place for me and glad that I am going there."
Tony was extremely upbeat while we were talking on the phone. He was very excited about his change of schools. We talked for a good while and he kept coming back to how glad he was going to Georgia Tech and that no other school would enter the picture and he proved that by telling the Georgia coaches that he wasn't interested in talking to them about coming there. I really enjoyed hearing how excited and happy Tony was about his decision. He was even talked about who he could room with and he's not even on campus yet. Georgia Tech not only picked up a very good player but one that will be very dedicated during his stay in Atlanta.