How well is Mark Richt doing in terms of recruiting? Is he addressing the needs of the Dawgs for the years to come? Has he made it known what positions Georgia needs to bolster in order to compete in the future? This week's article focuses on offensive linemen and Georgia's attempts at signing them.
Richt made it known early that offensive linemen were a top priority. And with that he has seen two commitments already this season.
Josh Brock a 6-4 280 pound offensive guard from Cartersville committed to Georgia earlier in the season. Brock originally committed to Clemson, but after a few weeks of the early season he switch his commitment and went with the Dawgs.
Brock bench presses 340 pounds, squats 475 and power cleans 300. Brock carries a 3,4 grade point average and has already scored a 19 ACT and 960 SAT.
"Georgia has a real family atmosphere and Coach (Mark) Richt has the program going in the right direction. It was a dream of mine to play at Georgia. It is a dream come true. Georgia needs offensive linemen and it is close to home. My brother (Jeremy) goes to school there. They also have 86,000 screaming fans every weekend and there is nothing like it. It was a very hard decision and Clemson was real understanding. They left the door open for me but I don't see that happening. I am going to be a Georgia Bulldog."
Bartley Miller is a 6-5 275 offensive lineman from Marist in Atlanta. Miller is not as big as a lot of other linemen but speed seems to be his strength.
"Georgia is close to home and the place for me. The Dawgs need linemen and it is just a great situation. Notre Dame and Florida were right there but in the end, it was Georgia. I don't need the glamour or attention so I have decided to go ahead with the commitment. Joe Tereshinski and I have become great friends through the recruiting process."
Of course Tereshinski is one in a long line of Georgia Bulldogs with the same last name. His father and grandfather both played at Georgia. Miller and Brock will likely be blocking for Tereshinski in the future, but not before Tereshinski goes through some serious quarterback battles with the likes of DJ Shockley and David Green.
Tereshinski is 6-3 205 and runs the 40 in 4.7 seconds. He is considered a dropback, in the pocket passer. As a junior Tereshinski threw for 2,023 yards with 17 touchdowns and he ran in 13 touchdowns. His head coach Bob Gurley says this about Tereshinski, ''He's hard to confuse. You can't change coverages on him and create confusion like you want to do with a lot of quarterbacks."
"I love the tradition at Georgia, I love the players and especially the new staff. Coach Richt is great and their facilities are magnificent. I am a dropback passer with an above average arm. I need to work on my footwork and get a little quicker. I will graduate early and participate in spring practice next year. I will learn the offense as quick as possible and compete with those guys. I will be all right. Georgia is the place for me. I just realized that I am born and bred a Georgia Bulldog."
Offensive line prospects
|Derek Morris (Photo: Jamie Newberg, BorderWars.com)|
Derek Morris is from North Carolina and is a big boy. He stands 6-6 and weighs 345 pounds. He attended camps at Tennessee and Georgia this summer. He had 111 pancake blocks last year during the regular season. He added another 12 in the playoff game. There is a lot of hype following this young man around and he would be a huge pick up for the Dawgs. He is visiting Georgia for the Auburn game. Currently Morris is The Insiders' number one ranked offensive lineman in the country.
Morris benches 425 pounds, squats 665 and power cleans 315 pounds. "Derek is a dominant force," said North Mecklenburg Head Coach Scott Sherrill. "He is a force on both sides of the ball that brings intensity to everything he does.
"I like protecting my running backs and quarterback. I like pass blocking. I love run blocking. I love driving somebody's head into the ground."
Randy Hand is 6-6 300 and is from Fort Myers, Florida. "I'd have to say that Michigan, Florida, Clemson, Virginia and Georgia are my favorites. I'll be looking at the academics, how stable the coaching staff is and I'll be looking for early playing time."Hand has a 2.85 GPA in the classroom and he scored 1080 on his SAT. Hans visited Athens earlier in the year and said, "I met most of the coaches, and was led around by coach Bobo (who is recruiting Randy for Georgia). It was the first school I visited, and really enjoyed the town and facilities."
Max Jean-Gilles bench presses over 400 pounds but is having trouble with the SAT. Although he has a 3.1 GPA and he scored only a 790 on his first try with the SAT. He is a coveted player from South Florida and the Dawgs are going to have to compete with the likes of Miami and Nebraska to get this one. And that could be tough considering the power of both of those schools in the national polls. Miami is recruiting Jean-Gilles very hard. He is listed very high on many recruiting analyst's boards. He is ranked as the seventh overall lineman in the country by The Insiders.
|Alex Pou (Photo: Jamie Newberg, BorderWars.com)|
Alex Pou is said to have "excellent footwork". One this that Pou does have is athletic ability. Not only is Pou a highly sought after lineman, but he is also a basketball player. No, he is not being recruited to my knowledge as a potential basketball player too, but basketball requires even more footwork than football linemen are used to. And the fact that he averages a double-double means that he is doing something right on the court.
Jamie Newberg notes that Pou likes "Miami, Auburn, Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, and Arkansas." Pou will set up visits soon; Georgia is expected to get one of them. Newberg also reports that Pou graded at 93% with 70 pancake blocks thus far this season.
Willie Henderson told Jamie Newberg, "right now, Tennessee is my leader. I will visit Tennessee on January 11th. I will also visit Arkansas (12-1) and Memphis (1-25). Florida will get a visit most likely in January sometime. Ole Miss, LSU or Georgia will get my last visit."
The Insiders ranks him as the 29th best offensive lineman in the country. He is from Memphis so it does not appear that he will be wrestled away from the Vols now that he has them as their leader. He has not yet scheduled a visit to Georgia, but the Dawgs have offered his a scholarship.
"I am open between Georgia, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Florida, Tennessee, and South Carolina," said offensive line prospect Merci Falaise. "I will set up my visits after the season." He stands 6-5, 330 but has a hip injury that he is recovering from. Georgia should have the edge on this young man because of his high school's location, which is close to Athens. He visited Georgia during the Auburn game, but has not set an official visit to Athens and the Dawgs have yet to offer him. South Carolina is the only team that has offered Falaise that he is expressing interest in.
The teammate of Falaise, Antonio Mercier is a big young man, standing 6-6 and weighting 335 pounds. His visit to Georgia is set for January 11th, but the Dawgs have not yet offered him a scholarship. He has, however, received offers from both Clemson and South Carolina.
Robert Kraay is a tall lineman from Tucker. The Tigers have been streaming players to the Dawgs since Pat Pass and Cory Robinson made their appearance in 1996. In fact, this season (2001) is the first season in more than 5 that a Tucker Tiger is not on the Georgia roster. Kraay is rather lanky at 6-8 and 245 pounds. But one reason for his low weight is because of a sinus infection that he had in the summer. Because of that he lost almost 30 pounds.
"I think I have the frame to get to 310 pounds in a year or so. I have that kind of frame. Georgia is my number one choice. I also like ECU, Georgia Southern and UTC. I am looking at education, tradition and playing time."
Georgia has offered six scholarships, and of those six, two have committed to sign with the Dawgs in February. Georgia's offensive line started coming together during the Ole Miss game, however, this season's group of recruits is very important because of the age of the offensive line. Signing several linemen would do a lot in terms of securing the future of the running game as well as the future of David Greene and other Georgia quarterbacks.
If the Dawgs can wrestle Morris away from all of the schools going after him, they will be going in the right direction in terms of landing a top 5 class.