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Sunday, June 23, 2013
Dawgs pick up Dukes, commit No. 11

By Radi Nabulsi and Kipp Adams

Georgia’s recruiting momentum has grown so strong now that it is even sweeping up prospects committed to other schools. After landing five recruits in a span of seven days, the Bulldogs have not slowed down at all and now have another commitment.

Linebacker Detric Dukes (Tucker, Ga./Tucker) has dropped his commitment to Louisville and is now committed to Georgia.

"I committed to Georgia," Dukes said. "It has always been a program I wanted to go to because it is close to home, they have great tradition and great academics, so it was hard to turn down the offer to play for them. It feels great to be a Dawg and I am done with visits."

Dukes visited Athens last Saturday with his family and picked up an offer that afternoon. He waited until after work on Wednesday to call the Louisville coaches, and then he called Bulldogs coach Mark Richt with the good news. Dukes knew shortly after he left Athens that he wanted to be a Bulldog.

"I knew where I wanted to go, but this is a long process so I needed to sit down with my family and discuss my decision," Dukes said. "When I told my mom and dad that was my choice for the next four years, they were behind me 100 percent."

The three-star prospect is set to play inside linebacker for Georgia, joining former teammate Josh Dawson on the defensive side of the ball. Dukes has visited with Dawson several times.

"Josh always has been straight forward with me and he told me to weigh my options, take visits, and go wherever I felt like home," Dukes said.

Georgia is also targeting one of Dukes’ teammates in the Class of 2014. ESPN 150 defensive tackle Elisha Shaw had Alabama and Georgia on the top of his list for months and recently added Ole Miss in the mix. Dukes wants to bring Shaw with him to play between the hedges.

“I am going to work on him,” Dukes said. “We need him, so yeah, I've got some work to do.”

Georgia has been lucky at Tucker High School. Dawson also decommitted during his recruitment, leaving a Vanderbilt commitment behind to attend Georgia.

When Georgia went after Dawson, it was right before signing day. Mark Richt and company didn’t want to wait that long for Dukes.

"The coaching staff said they wanted to make sure they were diligent in their search for  the right guy, and after watching film over and over, they decided I was the right fit for what they want to do on defense," Dukes said.

Georgia signed five inside linebackers in the 2013 class after not signing any the year before. With such a big class last year, spots in this class were limited. Georgia only offered players it considered special at that position, and inside linebackers coach Kirk Olivadotti obviously thinks Dukes fits that category.

"Coach O [Olivadotti] said I was his guy," Dukes said. "They are only taking one or two inside linebackers, so they wanted to be very selective."

Dukes, who made 80 tackles and five sacks, also has offers from Ohio State, Auburn, Kansas State, Connecticut, Indiana, Vanderbilt, NC State and Syracuse. His addition gives the Bulldogs 11 commitments for the 2014 class -- seven from Georgia and four on the defensive side of the ball.