The University of Georgia picked up its seventh commitment of the 2013 class Tuesday, and it might end up being the biggest in the class.
With VID (Very Important Dawg) Day only a few days away, one of the top prospects in the Peach State made the call to become a Bulldog. The coaching staff was only hoping to confirm his attendance on Saturday, but when they picked up the phone, they got great news from a key target at a position of need.
As defensive lineman Deandre Johnson (Newnan, Ga./Northgate) thought about it last night with his family, he discusses his intentions of committing to Georgia. The Johnson household was ecstatic about it, so this morning, Johnson got on the phone to the coaches in Athens.
“I called them this morning and they were asking me if I was going to VID Day this weekend, and I told them I think I have made my decision,” Johnson said. “When they found out it was Georgia they all starting yelling and jumping around. I could tell they were as happy about it as I was.”
Committing to Georgia might have been the plan all along for the 6-foot-3, 311-pound prospect, but the decision to announce on Tuesday was all about securing his spot "between the hedges."
“I was thinking about everything, and they said they were going to offer three at my position and take the first one and shut down the other two, so I wanted to take the spot,” Johnson said. “It feels great being a Bulldog.”
Johnson picked the Bulldogs over offers from Georgia Tech, North Carolina, South Carolina, Duke, Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Southern Miss and Tennessee so far, with several other schools showing strong interest.
Northgate head coach Tommy Walburn said one school was on Johnson’s mind all along.
“He wanted to go to UGA from the beginning,” Walburn said. “I think he really likes Coach [Mark] Richt, Coach [John] Lilly and Coach [Rodney] Garner. “
Johnson joins Chris Mayes (Griffin, Ga./Mississippi Gulf Coast C.C.) as defensive line commitments for Georgia in the 2013 recruiting class, and Walburn feels the latest addition to the Bulldogs has very high upside.
“I feel like as a player he has really good feet for a 300-pound lineman, and his best football is still ahead of him because his body is still improving,” Walburn said. "He is so big, so he takes up a lot of room, plus he has great feet, so he is able to work his way down the line of scrimmage.
"He controls at least two blockers on every play, so he frees up our linebackers to make plays. He is really receptive to coaching and has gotten to where he is a perfectionist. For a kid his size that can move as well as he does, the sky is the limit for DeAndre Johnson."
He is also not the only Newnan area standout preparing to play in the red and black, as he joins Newnan HS safety Tray Matthews.
“I have been good friends with Tray since we played together in elementary school, and I think it will be great to play with him again,” Johnson said. “I texted him about my decision and he was pumped about the great things we are going to do at Georgia.”