Tuesday, July 16, 2013
2015 ESPN 300 targets: Georgia
By Kipp Adams
Football offers and commitments are occurring earlier and earlier. To keep in line with this new world of accelerated recruiting, ESPN announced its release of the initial ESPN 300 for the 2015 class on Tuesday.
The list is once again loaded with targets for Georgia. DawgNation takes a look at 10 targets to keep an eye on for 2015, in order of their ranking in the ESPN 300.
The No. 1 offensive tackle in the country in the initial 2015 ESPN 300, Hyatt is considered to be the most talented offensive lineman to come out of Georgia in a long time. North Gwinnett has sent Ja'Wuan James to Tennessee, Austin Shepherd to Alabama and DeVondre Seymour to UGA in 2013, and Hyatt could be the best of the group. Hyatt held his own versus 2013 No. 1 prospect Robert Nkemdiche last fall, but Georgia might have to overcome family ties to Clemson to sign the elite rising junior, which they were able to do with Jay Rome and Jeb Blazevich.
2015 ESPN 300
College programs aren't the only ones scouting the Class of 2015. After hitting the camp circuits and watching hours and hours of tape, our scouts rank the 2015 prospects. ESPN Junior 300
The No. 1 defensive tackle in the country emerged earlier this year after Georgia offensive coordinator Mike Bobo discovered Thompson while on the road in January and gave him his first scholarship offer during his visit in February. Schools such as Alabama, Clemson and Florida State followed suit, but they will have their work cut out for them trying to steal Thompson from the Peach State. The Bulldogs are heavily favored early on for Thompson, who grew up a big fan of Georgia.
3. ATH Terry Godwin (Hoganville, Ga./Callaway)
6-foot, 170 pounds
ESPN 300 rank: 12
The Mark Richt 7-on-7 Camp the past two years has been the Terry Godwin show. The No. 2 athlete in the 2015 class, Godwin is an absolute playmaker at both cornerback and wide receiver, setting up a fierce battle between the offensive and defensive coordinator at the lucky college that signs him. He will have his choice of suitors when it comes time to make a decision, but right now the Bulldogs’ coaching staff have made Godwin and his mother feel very comfortable in Athens.
4. RB Taj Griffin (Powder Springs, Ga./McEachern)
5-9, 175 pounds
ESPN 300 rank: 24
Terry Godwin has made his mark at Georgia camps the last two summers.
Explosiveness. That is what Griffin brings to the table. At the Nike Combine this March, the 2015 running back reeled off a 4.43 40-yard dash and over 40-inch vertical jump on a day that winter weather heavily affected the performance of other prospects in attendance. He ran similar times at Dawg Night on Friday in stormy conditions, impressing running backs coach Bryan McClendon. He has been made an early priority for the Bulldogs, but keep an eye out for Ohio State as well.
5. QB Ricky Town (Ventura, Calif./ St. Bonaventure)
6-4, 190 pounds
ESPN 300 rank: 42
Bobo brought in several junior quarterbacks for the Mark Richt Camp and Dawg Night, but told all of them no offers would go out to a junior signal-caller until both events had concluded and he had seen everyone throw. Bobo wasted no time sending his first offer out to Town that Saturday morning, letting him know he is Georgia’s initial target at quarterback for next year. In a year where California has several upper-echelon quarterback prospects, the battle for Town’s commitment could come down to Alabama and Georgia.
In 2013 Georgia signed the No. 2 prospect in South Carolina in Tramel Terry. At the moment, Georgia has a commitment from the No. 6 prospect in the Palmetto State in quarterback Jacob Park (Goose Creek, S.C./Stratford) and could land the No. 1 prospect in linebacker Christian Miller (Spring Valley, S.C./Spring Valley). In-state powers Clemson and South Carolina are working hard to prevent the Bulldogs from stealing Huggins, who made 70 tackles, seven sacks, four tackles for loss and three fumble recoveries, including one returned for a touchdown, as a sophomore. He said in March that Georgia was his “dream offer.”
7. OL Chuma Edoga (Powder Springs, Ga./McEachern)
6-4, 275 pounds
ESPN 300 rank: 61
In talking to Edoga, one would not get the sense that he has a mean streak. But when he gets on the football field, put simply, Edoga gets it done. He is extremely agile and versatile enough to play anywhere on the offensive line in college. Edoga earned an offer from Georgia following his performance at Dawg Night last Friday, but they will have to stay on him and fight off double-digit other programs to earn his commitment.
8. TE Christian Owens (Griffin, Ga./Griffin)
6-5, 205 pounds
ESPN 300 rank: 100
Owens committed to Georgia in April, just a few days after getting the offer. A towering wideout with excellent body control, Owens has the frame to grow into an outstanding hybrid tight end over the next two years. Regardless of his status as a commitment, Owens will likely add many more offers before he signs, so Georgia will need to ensure he remains solid in his verbal pledge.
Like Thompson, Walker came extremely close to committing to Georgia when offered back in February. He held off to see what other options would be available, and as of now 25 other programs have since offered the explosive pass rusher that racked up 105 tackles, 18 tackles for loss, 21 sacks, two forced fumbles, two recovered fumbles and a blocked punt last season. He is more comfortable playing with his hand in the dirt right now, but his frame and explosiveness off the edge would make him a great fit at outside linebacker in a 3-4 as well.
10. DE Natrez Patrick (Atlanta/Mays)
6-3, 225 pounds
ESPN 300 rank: 113
All in all, Patrick might have been the most impressive prospect during the lineman camp that took place alongside the Mark Richt 7-on-7. Patrick wants to check out more programs before starting to name favorites, but schools such as Alabama, Auburn and Georgia have made great impressions so far. Growing up in a household of Georgia fans, Patrick made 126 tackles, 32 tackles for loss, and 13 sacks as a sophomore.