ATHENS, Ga. — The ramifications of Steve Spurrier's sudden decision to resign at Florida may extend to the recruiting battles.
Several top players, for example, have listed Georgia and Florida as two of their top choices, and Spurrier's exit could benefit the Bulldogs. One possible effect, however, is players who had been close to a decision now may be more prone to wait and see who is named as Spurrier's replacement, and a big-name coach could swing the momentum back to Florida.
Defensive tackle Kedrick Golston of Sandy Creek High School lists Auburn, Georgia and Florida high on his list. Golston is scheduled to visit Georgia next weekend.
Others who have both Georgia and Florida high on their lists: tight end Leonard Pope, Americus, Ga; offensive lineman Derek Morris, Huntersville, N.C.; linebacker Ricardo Hurley, Greenwood, S.C.; running back Nick Turner, Atlanta-Washington High School; defensive end Marcus Jackson, Norcross High; wide receiver Jemalle Cornelius, Fort Meade, Fla., and safety Jimmy Williams, Hampton, Va. Georgia did not have any verbal commitments in the last week but may be close to receiving decisions from one or two wide receivers, including JeJuan Rankins of Windsor, N.C., and Mario Raley of Charlotte, N.C.
Safety Brian Crum of Camden County High School, another player considering both Georgia and Florida, also may be close to making his announcement, perhaps as early as this week.
Georgia had no official visits this weekend but is gearing up for two big weekends of visits Jan. 11 and Jan. 18. More top recruits, including safety Pat Watkins of Tallahassee, Fla., are scheduled to visit on Jan. 25. Watkins, considered as one of the top safeties in the nation, is listing Florida State and Georgia as his top choices.
Among the 15 or more players scheduled to visit Georgia next weekend are Golston, Raley, Rankins, Hurley, linebacker Channing Crowder of Sandy Springs, Ga., and offensive linemen Antonio Mercier of Washington, Ga., and Ron Green, from Dixie State (Utah) Junior College.
Charles Odum can be reached at CEOdum@aol.com.
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