Tuesday, February 19, 2013
DE could be first Georgia Dawg of '15
By Radi Nabulsi
Defensive end Arden Key (Lithonia, Ga./Martin Luther King) took in the University of Georgia junior day on Saturday and met with Bulldogs defensive line coach Chris Wilson. The new coach made quite the impression on the young sophomore, as by the time Key left, he was tweeting that he wished he could commit to Georgia.
Despite having offers from Washington, UCLA, Vanderbilt, Tennessee and many more, Key seemed primed to become the Bulldogs' first commit for the Class of 2015.
In fact, Key said he would like to commit but worries that doing so will shorten his list of options.
“I would commit, but the people that I have known that have committed early, their recruiting process has slowed down,” Key said. “So I would like my recruiting process to keep improving. If I could commit and my recruiting process would keep improving, then I would.”
So for now, the Bulldogs will remain his front-runner.
“They are now No. 1 on my list,” Key said. “They are up there: Georgia, Washington, Alabama, USC and then UCLA.”
Wilson has been part of the staff just more than a month, but he already is making a difference on the recruiting trail.
“It was the coaching staff that did it,” Key said. “I used to go over there all the time. I went there for the Ole Miss game and the camps and stuff. You have some coaches that you have a connection with, but there was something about Coach [Rodney] Garner that I could not get a connection with him. But when Coach Wilson came on, we bonded as soon as we met. As soon as we touched hands I thought, 'That is my future coach.' ”
The Huskies dropped to No. 2 on Key’s list.
“I haven’t had a chance to go out there and visit, but when they came down to talk to me they offered me on the spot,” Key said. “There was just something about that coach that stood out at that time. At least until Georgia did what they did today.”
Key, who measured in at Georgia slightly above 6-foot-5 and weighed in at 195 pounds, said he was offered a scholarship on his visit and that he and Wilson tried to work out where he would play.
“Coach Wilson offered,” Key said. “I think it was a real good offer. Today Coach Wilson was talking about my position, what I could do and what position he would like me to play. We were trying to decide. He didn’t say he wanted me to play defensive end. He doesn’t want to make me play a position I don’t want to.”
Apparently the offer had been in the works for a while and is still contingent upon Key working on his grades.
“They partially offered me before,” Key said. “They told me they were going to offer. The reason I didn’t have the full offer at first was because of the grades. They pulled my transcript and my grades were not looking right but they came back two weeks ago and I got my grades straight. They have been messaging me ever since then.”
Key also thinks highly of USC.
“I forgot who I talked to on the coaching staff there, but I have always liked the Trojans,” Key said. “I talked to them in the summer last year.”
The coaching staff for the Crimson Tide will get its chance to impress Key soon.
“I am going to Alabama’s junior day next weekend,” Key said. “I haven’t been to the school yet. I have only talked to the coaches. This will be my first time visiting and I am excited.”