Recruiting: McGee Narrows List To Two

Inside Texas caught up with <B>Stephen McGee</B> to give him an opportunity to assess his visits to Georgia Tech and the University of Georgia this past weekend. And let me tell you, he came away impressed with the Yellow Jackets, but was rather animated when the topic turned toward the SEC-champion Bulldogs. McGee broke down both and narrowed his list of faves down to two.

First things first...

Inside Texas: How'd that Georgia Tech visit go...

Stephen McGee: It's a pretty cool school. I considered it a great honor to meet with (head) coach (Chan) Gailey. Just being able to sit down and talk with him was an honor. We only got about 15 minutes to talk because he had a prior commitment to go and read (some books) to some children, but I spent a lot of time with the other coaches after he left.

Inside Texas: Of those coaches you spoke with, who stood out the most?

SM: Well, I spent a lot of time with all of the coaches, but probably more with Coach (Patrick) Nix. He's the quarterback coach.

IT: Coach Shipley told IT the Yellow Jackets were going to go to more of a pro-style scheme (similar to the offense the Dallas Cowboys ran when Gailey coached there) and after learning that was curious as to how much that may have excited you?

SM: It was definitely an offense I feel like I could fit into. And they showed me some clips of Troy Aikman running the same exact plays they (Ga. Tech's O) were running in practice.

IT: You don't really sound too enthused about Ga. Tech. Are they not really big-time enough for you?

SM: No, I wouldn't say that. All of the schools I visited as well as the other schools I had on my list were big-time enough for me. Coach Gailey's going to do well at Georgia Tech and they're going to start winning more games, so....It's just that I'm looking for a program that I think I best fit into and they're just not the one that fits the characteristics I'm necessarily looking for.

IT: Getting the chance to meet with the offensive-minded Mark Richt at the University of Georgia had to be a little exciting for you since Georgia has been one of you favorites. How did that go?

SM: Oh, he's (Richt) incredible. I didn't know what to expect before making the trip, but I got there around 4 o'clock Friday and spent about five hours with Coach Richt and just really had a good time. I've narrowed it down to Georgia and Texas A&M.

[Note: Earlier this year, recruitniks knew it would be especially neat to follow the rather large assemblage of D-1 QB talent within the state's borders, but for those wanting to follow McGee as a Longhorn, that, unfortunately, will not be the case as McGee will pick between the 'Dawgs and the Ags.]

IT: In our last Scoop, IT actually had you leaning to A&M more so than any other school, but that's not to say we weren't curious as to what kind of interest you might have for Georgia given its style of offense and, of course, the fact you had yet to trip there. We also said you might make your decision within a week of visiting A&M on the 12th of April. Have you decided when you'll make an announcement?

SM: Yes sir. After I go to A&M, I'll know and decide then.

IT: Do you know now?

SM: No, not really. Sometimes I think I do, but then I go back-and-forth. It's really, really close.

IT: So, it's neck-and-neck?

SM: Yes sir, it really is. I mean I just can't say which one is my favorite. It's day-to-day. I'm going to use the time between now and Saturday to think everything through.

IT: I figured you might shy away from a school that was implementing more rollouts and option-packages; would you say that was the case?

SM: No, because I think I'm athletic enough to do those things as well. I want to do different things like that and get out of the pocket more. And I just feel that whoever signs you is going to make use of your talent the best way they can. These are major universities who are getting paid to win games so they're going to put you in a scheme that best suits your talents and not use you out of character.

IT: Why Georgia and A&M?

SM: They're both schools that are going to win a lot of games. Just two incredible programs that fit me well. Coach Fran and Coach Richt are both wonderful coaches and I think a lot of them. I've developed wonderful relationships with both of them and it's going to be hard to tell either one of them 'No'.

IT: I wanted to touch base with you on a rumor and see if we can clear some things up. It was reported that you were backing off of A&M because they were reportedly after (Galena Park QB) Bobby Reid. And that A&M had indicated to you that you were the only QB they wanted, yet then the Reid rumor came about. What really happened?

SM: Every team I spoke to said that once I elected to commit they would stop recruiting other quarterbacks. A&M told me the same thing. There was a misunderstanding and Coach Fran made a point to address it with me. They said they wanted to offer two QBs if I didn't sign with them, but that if I did choose them, they would refrain from recruiting anymore quarterbacks, so I'm not backing away from A&M. That's not true. It's between them and Georgia and I feel I can't go wrong with either one of those schools. Coach Richt said I'm their guy and Coach Fran said I'm their guy. Like I said, it's going to be very difficult because I have built friendships with both coaching staffs. It's going to be a really tough decision.

IT: With the Horns already knocking at the door of a NC, would you say that going to Georgia or A&M affords you an opportunity to help them get to the Horns' level and/or beyond?

SM: Georgia had a great year last year...I think they went 13-1 and they play in a very difficult conference so I think you could say that they're already up there. A&M, of course, had a down year but I know they're going to get it together and win a lot of games too. I guess you could say that I'd like to make an impact on one of those teams and have a chance to win a NC. Texas certainly is capable of doing the same, but it came down to my belief in what Coach Fran and Coach Richt are doing and where I think I best fit.

Just a great kid to interview. Very straightforward throughout the entire process. We'll be keeping tabs on him in the near- and long-term future, regardless of where he ends up inking and we wish him success. And folks, the QB situation is definitely starting to shake out. Booty gave USC a verbal and McGee will decide this weekend between Georgia or A&M. Now the focus will shift to Reid, Rhett Bomar and Graham Harrell, but they'll be granted somewhat of a reprieve as the Burnet Bomber has a few more days before making his official announcement.

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