Mark Richt and Rodney Gardner made no bones about it. The goal of this years' recruiting efforts were two-fold; sign offensive linemen and linebackers; and put a "fence around the state of Georgia."
On Wednesday they accomplished both.
"The way that you judge how well you do in recruiting is if you address your needs," said Gardner. "We are confident that we have addressed those needs," he said.
Georgia signed 7 offensive linemen and 5 linebackers Wednesday.
Richt said that signing day was successful because of the hard work of the coaching staff. "The assistant coaches got the job done," he said. "Most of the in-home visits that I had were social visits because the assistants did such a great job."
But Georgia did not sign all of the players that they recruited. Ernie Sims, for instance, slipped though Georgia's hands.
"Ernie is a great kid," Richt said, "but I think that too much was made about him wearing the number thirty-four. He didn't want to wear Herschel Walker's number, he wanted to wear his number, the number thirty-four."
Richt said that it was unlikely that another Georgia player would ever wear Walker's retired number. "Its way too much pressure to put on a kid to wear number thirty-four. Also, to un-retire it makes no sense at all," he said.
Richt and company locked down most of their Peach State commitments early which created a so-called "fence around the state." But a void remained from early January until signing day when Georgia lost out on many out of state recruits. Critics said that Georgia was finishing the recruiting season poorly. But Richt disagreed.
"The early decisions took the climax out of it for the recruiting fans," he said, "but had some of our early commitments announced today, people would be doing back flips."
Georgia did not sign any quarterbacks or safeties. Richt said that too many quarterbacks on any one campus at a time is trouble. "If you sign a bunch of quarterbacks you are going to have problems. We like our quarterback situation," he said.
Richt reported that Olaolu Sanni-Osomo will likely move from linebacker to safety to address needs at that position and that Odell Thurmond will likely play the mike linebacker position.