2014 Recruiting Class in Review
The UGA coaching staff recruited their way to a #8 team ranking according to the 247 Composite. This was a smaller class of 21 players let by the following 5 star recruits: Lorenzo Carter, Sony Michel, and Nick Chubb. While small in numbers, this class has so far proven to be big in MATURITY……………something we can’t say about the previous class of 2013. There have been 2 casualties to the class so far in Gilbert Johnson (test score) and Hunter Atkinson (exploring other options), while many are expected to earn immediate playing time, with one expected to finish JUCO classes this summer. Without further adieu, we present to you the 2014 class!!!
QB – 1 The Bulldawgs signed one quarterback in this cycle. He is EE Jacob Park, a 6’3 200lb 4* recruit from Stratford High in Goose Creek, SC. Park is an athletic signal caller with a big arm and the swag to go with it. Being an early enroll student has given Park a head start in practice and in the playbook, but don’t expect anything but a redshirt his first year.
RB – 2 UGA had arguably the strongest running back tandem in the 2014 class! Well, actually not arguably……………no chance there was a better one. Sony Michel and Nick Chubb, both 5* running backs, were both ranked higher than Keith Marshall and Todd Gurley coming out of high school. Both look to earn immediate playing time behind Todd Gurley and a Hopefully healthy Keith Marshall. Not to underestimate Turman or Douglas, but if Marshall’s recovery from knee surgery slows down, look for these two to compete for the second strong carries. Both are good enough to be freshmen starters on most D1 teams.
WR – 5 I believe our class of wide receivers this year will end up being slightly underrated. These 4 guys may not bring the star power of other classes, but they bring the stability that UGA needs at this position right now. Shakenneth Williams’ smooth play along with the future depth chart almost promises him to be a late second year contributor. Isaiah “the human joystick” McKenzie will surely contribute immediately on kickoff return and/or punt return. Rico Johnson and all of his speed recommitted to the Dawgs and could have a chance to try DB, while Gilbert Johnson is trying to make the grades at prep school and make it as part of the 2015 class. I’m including Charlie Hegedus in this group although he is currently on the team as a preferred walk on after transferring in from NC State. Don’t be surprised to see this guy on the field in 2015. He could take the extra scholly from the Hunter Atkinson departure.
TE – 2 Jeb Blazevich was our first TE commit picking UGA over Clemson and Ole Miss, among others. The coaching staff thought so much of Jeb that they had him at the top of their board over UGA legacy Milan Richard. Richard, who signed with Clemson, is the nephew of Herschel Walker and also had both parents run track at UGA. Hunter Atkinson was a NSD offer and commit who has since decided to give up football to pursue other options.
OL – 4 Same as our WR group, I truly believe this group will end up being underrated. Dyshon Sims has the frame to allow him to grow into a good sized OT. A perfect situation would allow him to red shirt this year. Kendall Baker is a DT who doesn’t have much OL experience, but from all accounts has been putting in a ton of extra work. I’d be surprised if we don’t see him RS. To me, Isaiah Wynn will most likely be the one to see the field first as a freshman. He has proven on the field and in all star games that he can hang with the best and has a mean streak not a lot of people recognize. Speaking of mean streaks, I give you Jake Edwards! The guy who is known for stopping Trent Thompson in one on ones at the Mark Richt Camp more than once. If you haven’t read this family’s story you’re missing out big time! Check it out HERE.
DL – 1 Lamont Gaillard was a highly rated defensive lineman that was recruited by many. He committed to UGA over a lot of other offers, including all of the big schools from Florida. Gaillard didn’t do as well his senior year or in the all star game as one would expect mainly due to some bad weight gained. Seeing UGA playing with DT’s weighing well over 300 pounds caused him to want to gain the weight in high school to try and get used to playing that big. UGA’s S&C program and Jeremy Pruitt’s defensive scheme should allow him to get down to his preferred weight where he can play with maximum explosiveness.
OLB – 2 In my opinion this is the second strongest group of recruits after Michel and Chubb. Lorenzo Carter is a bit raw, but already possesses the explosiveness to play as a freshman. He is a star in the making, especially once Tracy Rocker works with him on using his hands violently. I’ve said since he committed that Keyon Brown is the most underrated player in this class and he has impressed since day 1 on campus. I wouldn’t be surprised if he sees the field as much as Carter as a freshman.
ILB – 1 Detric Bing-Dukes is a thumper who can also surprisingly cover very well. He was known as the backbone that kept a lot of this class together, often recruiting behind the scenes and making it up to Athens when different recruits came to town.
CB – 2 Shattle Fenteng is a JUCO player originally from Georgia who could very easily see early playing time. In fact, he is my favorite to start opposite Swann if he can get in and get the playbook down. He is currently finishing up classes at Hutchinson CC. Shaquille Jones is a quick, twitchy defensive back who was reruited heavily by Sherrer before and after he took the coaching job at UGA. In a good year with depth Jones would be a prime candidate for a RS, but who knows what’s going to happen with this group.
S – 2 Malkom Parrish is a very smooth safety who also played QB on his high school team. He played very well in his all star game and could see the field very early at UGA. He is a guy who just plays ball and doesn’t require the fanfare that others have in the past. IMO he is a prime candidate for the star position. Dominick Sanders, a teammate of Detric Bing-Dukes at Tucker, was a late addition to this recruiting class. He is a very quick type player that normally thrives in the type defense that Pruitt runs. Don’t be surprised to see him get early PT and don’t be surprised to see him all over the field.