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Thursday, March 7, 2013
DT Gaillard explodes onto recruiting scene

By Kipp Adams

After a junior season that included 100 tackles, four sacks, seven tackles for loss and two forced fumbles, defensive tackle Lamont Gaillard (Fayetteville, N.C./Pine Forest) and his coach Bill Sochovka felt offers would eventually come.

Sochovka said when in-state offers came in late February from North Carolina and NC State, Gaillard was very content with his recruitment. But a day later, Georgia offered, along with Boston College and ECU.

On Wednesday, scholarships were extended to the 6-foot-3, 315-pound lineman from Alabama and Florida State.

The events of the past few weeks have caught Gaillard off guard.

“It felt good to get the first two offers, but everything has come so quick since then,” Gaillard said. “I have been happy to get all of the offers so far, though. The Georgia and Alabama offers surprised me because they are in the SEC and not in-state.”

The Bulldogs got in touch with Gaillard’s coach Feb. 27 and had the emerging nose guard call his recruiter of record, John Lilly, for the first time. The introduction came with good news.

“Coach John Lilly said he wanted to offer me on the spot,” Gaillard said. “He said I could play all downs without coming off the field, that I was quick off the ball and that I carried my weight really well. I hope to visit there soon, once I get a date locked down.”

One Georgia star caught Gaillard’s eye with his play on the field through the last two years.

“I really like John Jenkins and how he plays the nose well just like me,” Gaillard said. “I was able to watch and learn from him but I am competitive so I actually hope I end up being better.”

Gaillard already thinks a lot of the programs that made offers Wednesday.

“The Florida State offer was great because that program is one of the best,” Gaillard said. “I am really looking forward to going there as soon as possible to check them out. It was good getting the Crimson Tide offer, but that one was really surprising. Honestly, a day later I am still exciting about getting that one.”

His coach has received great feedback from the colleges that have watched Gaillard on film.

“Lamont is pretty dominant at nose and always has to be double-teamed,” Sochovka said. “College teams like that he does not have to come off the field on third downs because he is so quick off the ball, even at 6-3, 315 pounds. His physicality, lateral movement and second effort are impressive.”

With the sudden acceleration of his recruitment, Gaillard, who is visiting South Carolina today and Clemson on Saturday, says he has no favorites as he tries to schedule visits to the programs that have offered.