Dawgs welcome the start of Class of 2007

ATHENS – Mark Richt was finally able to make his first public comments about Georgia's recruiting class of 2007 Wednesday, and they were glowing.

"It's awesome," Richt said of the four junior college players who signed with the team during the day. "I'm fired up, I really am. If we didn't get some help in the mid-year, it was really going to be rough during the spring."

The first of that help arrived when junior college products Scott Haverkamp of Butler Community College and Corvey Irvin, Vince Vance and Jarius Wynn of Georgia Military College all signed national letters-of-intent to play for the Bulldogs on the first day junior collegeplayers were allowed to sign.

The players will not join Georgia's team until after the Dec. 30 Chick-fil-A Bowl against No. 14 Virginia Tech.

GMC coach Bert Williams, who attended the Bulldogs' Wednesday practice, expects all three of his players to have an immediate impact at Georgia.

"Obviously there's a need on just numbers alone," Williams said.

Irvin, who also was recruited by Florida and South Carolina among others, will play defensive tackle for Georgia, Richt said.

Wynn, a junior college All-American and a four-star player according to Scout.com, chose Georgia over Florida, South Carolina, Auburn and Tennessee. He will be a defensive end.

"He's strong enough to bull rush you or give you the whoop-dee-do move," Richt said.

Vance, who had scholarship offers from LSU and South Carolina among others, is the most intriguing of the transfers. For starters, he has three years of eligibility left, unlike the others, who all have two. Also, he's only been playing offensive line for just 18 months.

"He takes a quantum leap of improvement every day," Williams said.

Vance, 6-foot-8, 310 pounds, reminds Williams of former Georgia standout tackle Bernard Williams, who played for the Bulldogs when Bert Williams was a graduate assistant in Athens.

"I'm just interested to see how good he's going to be by the time he finishes here," Bert Williams said. "I really think he has tremendous potential. I told him when we recruited him this is what I think you can be, and he bought into it and did a good job for us."

Haverkamp, who also was recruited by Arizona State and Illinois, played guard at Butler but could be either a tackle or guard for the Bulldogs, Richt said.

"He's big enough and strong enough and athletic enough to play guard or tackle," he said.

Plus, Richt said, "He's got a good football name. He's going to be a blocking machine."

In addition to the four transfers, the Bulldogs expect to enroll at least three more players from the Class of 2007 in time for spring practice. Wadesboro, N.C., offensive lineman Trinton Sturdivant and Nashville offensive lineman Tanner Strickland are two of those players. The third is believed to be Ocilla offensive lineman Justin Anderson, who spent the 2006 season at Hargrave Military Academy. Sturdivant and Anderson are rated four-star prospects by Scout.com, and Strickland is a three-star prospect.

Without the new additions, Georgia would have had only seven scholarship offensive linemen during spring practice.

"We really needed this," Richt said.

Wednesday's signees
Scott Haverkamp
Position: Offensive line
Size: 6-foot-4, 310 pounds
High school: Silver Lake High School (Silver Lake, Kansas)
Junior college: Butler Community College (Butler, Kansas)
FYI: All-state player as junior and senior in high school … Originally signed with Kansas before enrolling at Butler … Named second-team All-KJCCC as a guard … Ranked two stars by Scout.com
Corvey Irvin
Position: Defensive tackle
Size: 6-foot-4, 275 pounds
High school: Laney High School (Augusta)
Junior college: Georgia Military College
FYI: Class AA honorable mention all-state in high school … Part of a GMC defense that held opponents scoreless through the first four games of the year … Ranked three stars by Scout.com
Vince Vance
Position: Offensive tackle
Size: 6-foot-8, 310 pounds
High school: Bradwell Institute
Junior college: Georgia Military College
FYI: First-team JUCO All-American in only season at GMC … Class AAAAA honorable mention all-state as a defensive lineman in high school … Redshirted in first year at GMC and moved to offensive line … Ranked three stars by Scout.com
Jarius Wynn
Position: Defensive end
Size: 6-foot-5, 275 pounds
High school: Lincoln County High School (Lincolnton)
Junior college: Georgia Military College
FYI: Named second-team All-American in the junior college ranks … Defensive MVP for GMC … Had eight tackles-for-loss and four forced fumbles in 2006 … Ranked four stars by Scout.com

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