Coming down to the Wire

ATHENS -- With four days left before Wednesday's National Signing Day, Georgia has completed all but the finishing touches on its 2004 recruiting class.

"We've just got to tie up a few loose ends," recruiting coordinator Rodney Garner said. "For the most part, we feel pretty good about things. If we finish out with a couple guys we're waiting on, it's got a chance to be a good class."

The Bulldogs have 18 verbal commitments already and are believed to be waiting on word from five players -- Colquitt athlete Brandon Miller (6-foot-4, 220 pounds), Hartwell linebacker Jae Thaxton (6-2, 220), Atlanta lineman Michael Brown (6-5, 260), Alabaster, Ala., safety Tony Bell (6-2, 205) and Rockingham, N.C., athlete Dannell Ellerbe (6-0, 181).

The Bulldogs hosted only Miller this weekend on an official visit. Miller is the prototype for this year's signing class, which is filled with speedsters who could play several positions. Miller played defensive line, linebacker, wide receiver and tailback in high school.

The abundance of fast players was no accident, Garner said.

"We felt (team speed) was the No. 1 thing we needed to address," he said. "Now we've just got to get them all in and get them acclimated."

BROWN WAVERING AGAIN: For the second time in this recruiting season, Georgia is dealing with a player who is having a tough time sticking to a decision. Brown, who attends Westlake High School in Atlanta, verbally committed to the Bulldogs weeks ago. However, on Wednesday, he said he had changed his mind and decided to attend Florida.

Now, says his high school coach, Brown is "straddling the fence" again.

"Right now, there's no final word," Westlake coach Dallas Allen said. "One day he's here, one day he's somewhere else."

Brown planned to spend the weekend discussing the decision with his family and is expected to make a final announcement on Monday, Allen said.

"The decision he makes is a life-changing decision," Allen said. "He needs to sit down and think this thing through. He's got everybody coming at him from all angles."

Brown is considered one of the Southeast's top defensive linemen. There is speculation he could play on the offensive line in college, but Allen expects Brown to play defensive tackle.

"He's going to be a huge asset to whoever gets him," he said.

Defensive back Ramarcus Brown was the first player to go back and forth on the Bulldogs. He committed to Oklahoma, then Georgia, then backed away from both before finally settling on the Bulldogs.

THE NAME GAME: If the Bulldogs get Michael Brown, the will have two trios of players with the same last name. Michael Brown would join Thomas Brown and Ramarcus Brown. On Wednesday, linebacker Josh Johnson made a verbal commitment and joined Charles Johnson and Kelin Johnson. Georgia missed out on another Johnson when receiver Calvin Johnson decided to go to Georgia Tech.

Verbal commitments
OL Chester Adams 6-6, 315 Luverne, Ala.
QB Blake Barnes* 6-3, 215 Baldwyn, Miss.
RB Thomas Brown 5-9, 185 Tucker
CB Ramarcus Brown 6-0, 165 East Point
QB A.J. Bryant* 6-2, 190 Fort Valley
WR Jamar Bryant 6-2, 184 Rockingham, N.C.
CB Michael Grant 5-11, 175 Stone Mountain
WR Demiko Goodman 6-4, 185 Newnan
WR Kenneth Harris 6-4, 195 Cherryville, N.C.
DE Charles Johnson 6-3, 248 Hawkinsville
LB Josh Johnson 6-2, 225 Stone Mountain
CB Kelin Johnson 6-1, 178 Daytona Beach, Fla.
DE Brandon Lang 6-5, 220 Tucker
DE Jeremy Lomax 6-6, 210 Lovejoy
S Antonio Sims 6-1, 190 Hiram
RB Brannan Southerland 6-1, 218 Norcross
OL Seth Watts 6-5, 290 Sandersville
RB Danny Ware* 5-11, 210 Rockmart
*Already enrolled at Georgia

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