Georgia Bulldogs: Cordy Glenn

Continuing our run-up to Georgia's spring practice, this week we'll look back at the Bulldogs' five best recruiting classes of the last decade.

Today, we'll look at No. 5: The 2008 class that produced a couple of All-Americans and perhaps the greatest wide receiver in school history.

[+] EnlargeA.J. Green
Kevin C. Cox/Getty ImagesA.J. Green had a stellar career at Georgia.
The stars: A.J. Green seemed destined for greatness even before he became a Bulldog -- and he lived up to that advance billing as soon as he arrived on campus. In three seasons, Green accumulated 2,619 receiving yards and 23 touchdowns (totals that rank third and second, respectively, in school history) before becoming a Pro Bowl receiver with the Cincinnati Bengals. Center Ben Jones and safety Bacarri Rambo also earned All-America honors from at least one group during their careers, and cornerback/return man Brandon Boykin won the Paul Hornung Award as the nation's most versatile player as a senior in 2011.

The contributors: Several players from this class made a major impact at Georgia. In addition to the previously mentioned players, offensive lineman Cordy Glenn, kicker Blair Walsh, receiver Tavarres King, cornerback Sanders Commings and defensive linemen DeAngelo Tyson and Cornelius Washington all performed well enough to become NFL draft picks. Walsh slumped as a senior, but had two of the best seasons by a UGA place-kicker during his sophomore and junior seasons. King didn't generate the attention that Green did, but his career totals of 2,602 receiving yards and 21 touchdown catches are fourth and third in school history.

The letdowns: About half of this class failed to contribute much of anything. Running back/linebacker Richard Samuel played a minor role for most of his career although he was the No. 35 overall prospect on the ESPN 150. For a variety of reasons, several members of the class either never enrolled at Georgia (Xavier Avery, Toby Jackson), transferred (A.J. Harmon, Marcus Dowtin, Dontavius Jackson, Makiri Pugh, Nick Williams) or struggled with health issues (Bryce Ros, Jonathan Owens) that prevented them from completing their careers in Athens.

The results: The talent in this class was impressive -- 11 players from the group made it onto an NFL roster -- but there were enough flameouts that we won't rank it higher on the list. Nonetheless, many of these players helped the Bulldogs win back-to-back SEC East titles as upperclassmen after a disappointing 6-7 result in 2010. With Green, who looks like a potential Hall of Famer at this point, headlining the group, Georgia's 2008 class definitely belongs on our list.
ATHENS, Ga. -- He came into Georgia’s spring practice as one of the most talked-about players on the Bulldogs’ roster and leaves having validated that buzz.

[+] EnlargeJosh Harvey-Clemons
Radi Nabulsi/ESPNJosh Harvey-Clemons, listed as the starting strong safety, can move around on Georgia's defense. He was named the team's most valuable defensive player in spring practice.
But Josh Harvey-Clemons was still stunned when Georgia’s coaching staff last week named him as the team’s most valuable defensive player for the spring.

“I was shocked. I would have never guessed that,” said Harvey-Clemons, wearing a wide grin after his Black team rallied to beat the Red 23-17 in Saturday’s G-Day game.

The rising sophomore strong safety figured that Sheldon Dawson, who intercepted three passes before injuring his hamstring and missing G-Day, or early enrollee Tray Matthews, whom teammates lauded for his hard hits in practice, would win the award.

“But I thank God they did give it to me,” he laughed.

It was an easy choice, said defensive coordinator Todd Grantham, because of the varying ways that Harvey-Clemons can impact a game. He is the Bulldogs’ starting strong safety in the base 3-4 defense, but can shift to nickelback and outside linebacker in other packages, forcing opponents to account for his whereabouts.

“There’s certain guys on your team that you look for explosive plays out of and I think he’s going to be one of those guys,” Grantham said.

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Top Georgia sleepers 

January, 22, 2013
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ATHENS, Ga. -- With barely two weeks remaining until national signing day, this is a good time to not only project the futures of the respective prospects, but also look backward at players who entered college with modest expectations and performed solidly.

Let’s take a look at five Georgia “sleepers” since 2006 -- when ESPN first started its recruiting enterprise -- who exceeded our expectations after their arrival on campus.

ATHENS, Ga. -- Here’s a breakdown of Georgia’s last seven recruiting classes and what they managed to accomplish in college and beyond:

2006
ESPN top five classes: Florida, USC, Texas, Georgia, Notre Dame
Georgia’s ranking: 4

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UGA midseason report card: OL 

October, 11, 2012
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Editor’s note: Georgia’s football season is at the halfway mark, and the Bulldogs will take this weekend off before resuming SEC play next Saturday at Kentucky. We'll take a look at a different position group each day this week and evaluate how it performed in the first half of the season in our DawgNation midseason report cards.

ATHENS, Ga. -- The public opinion of Georgia’s offensive line was, for a time, much more positive than it is today, after the Bulldogs’ numerous breakdowns led directly to a 35-7 loss at South Carolina.

Will Friend’s rebuilt line had been surprisingly effective in the first five games, paving the way for Georgia to rank among the nation’s most explosive offenses.

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Editor’s note: With Georgia set to open preseason camp on Aug. 2, DawgNation will break down each position group and the storylines to watch in August. We finish our look at the offense today with the offensive line after covering quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers and tight ends earlier this week.


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Sixty-five days remain until Georgia kicks off its season opener against Buffalo on Sept. 1. In the days counting down to the opener, DawgNation will profile, with our “Around the Hedges in 80 Days” series, a Bulldogs player we expect to make an impact. We will review each player’s career thus far and project his long-term potential as we progress through our alphabetical list, from center David Andrews to receiver Rantavious Wooten.

[+] EnlargeWatts Dantzler
Radi Nabulsi/ESPN.comRelatively inexperienced O-lineman Watts Dantzler must prove himself quickly if he's to earn playing time in 2012.

65. Watts Dantzler
Sophomore, Offensive line
6-foot-7, 310 pounds


Fall forecast: Several offensive linemen, including Dantzler, enter preseason practice in quite similar positions. Part of a big group of offensive linemen who signed last year -- Dantzler, center David Andrews and guard Hunter Long played last fall as true freshmen -- Dantzler figures to be part of Georgia’s offensive line rotation and could play either guard or tackle. He hasn’t claimed a starting spot yet, however, and will enter preseason practice as Kolton Houston’s backup at right tackle.

Career highlight: Dantzler got fairly extensive playing time in non-conference wins against Coastal Carolina and New Mexico State, but perhaps his most valuable playing time came in a blowout win against Auburn.

Experience thus far: Dantzler appeared in three games last season in a reserve role.


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Roundtable: Dawg set for most NFL props? 

May, 23, 2012
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Seven players from Georgia’s 2012 team were taken last month in the NFL draft, tying for the second-highest number of players drafted, behind Alabama’s eight. Considering that at least five players from the Georgia defense could have left early, the Bulldogs might then have led the nation in players taken. The DawgNation Roundtable this week focuses on the players who were drafted, and their potential NFL success.

“Of the Georgia players drafted, who do you think will have the most successful NFL career?”

[+] EnlargeBen Jones
Dale Zanine/US PresswireFormer UGA center Ben Jones is versatile enough to help the Houston Texans at guard as well.
David Ching: The most obvious here is Cordy Glenn, whose size and versatility should keep him in the NFL for a long time. There is a reason so many NFL draft analysts projected him as a possible first-round pick with the potential to become an All-Pro guard. Even if he plays right tackle in the league, the Buffalo Bills have a mainstay on their offensive line for years to come.

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Watch Saturday's Rounds 4-7 live on WatchESPN.com.

Day 2 of the NFL draft has come and gone with only one Georgia player -- offensive lineman Cordy Glenn -- being picked.

Projected by many draft experts as a first-round pick, Glenn slipped to the second round, where the Buffalo Bills grabbed him with the 41st pick. Former Bulldogs Brandon Boykin and Orson Charles both had hopes of landing in the second or third rounds, but neither player made it off the board by the end of the night.

Rounds 4-7 will begin Saturday at noon ET on ESPN, with Boykin, Charles and several other ex-Bulldogs hoping to hear their names called on the draft’s final day.

Center Ben Jones, punter Drew Butler, defensive tackle DeAngelo Tyson and kicker Blair Walsh are also among the potential ex-Bulldog draft picks. Several more should have the opportunity to sign deals with NFL clubs as undrafted free agents.
Offensive lineman Cordy Glenn became the first Georgia player selected in the NFL draft Friday night when the Buffalo Bills picked him 41st overall in the second round, which he described as "probably the happiest moment of my life."

Glenn admitted he was surprised that he lasted until the second round, but said he was pleased that he wound up with Buffalo, one of his favorite teams.

"I did actually," Glenn said. "But things happen for a reason. I am just happy to be with the Bills."

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No Bulldogs picked in first round

April, 26, 2012
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No Georgia players were selected in Thursday’s first round of the NFL draft.

Former Bulldogs offensive lineman Cordy Glenn was one of 26 players who attended the draft at New York City’s Radio City Music Hall, but is one of six remaining in the green room at the end of the night. Four offensive linemen -- USC's Matt Kalil, Stanford's David DeCastro, Iowa's Riley Reiff and Wisconsin's Kevin Zeitler -- were picked in the first round ahead of Glenn.

Most draft experts projected that Glenn would be a first-round pick, with ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. ranking him as the No. 14 overall prospect on his “Big Board.” Glenn is now the best available player remaining on Kiper’s board and is the second-best player left according to NFL Network expert Mike Mayock and ESPN's Todd McShay's rankings.

Glenn was clearly Georgia's best shot at becoming a first-round pick. Instead, for the fifth time in the last seven years, no Bulldog was selected in the first round.

Glenn -- along with former Georgia teammates Brandon Boykin, Orson Charles and Ben Jones -- will now wait to hear his name called Friday night in the second or third rounds.

Round 2 will begin at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN. The draft will conclude with Rounds 4-7 starting at noon ET Saturday on ESPN.

UGA NFL draft primer

April, 26, 2012
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With an hour to go until the NFL draft begins, Georgia figures to have only one player hear his name called tonight during the first round.

Almost every top draft analyst has former Bulldogs offensive lineman Cordy Glenn going in the first round, typically somewhere in the mid to late first round.

However, Georgia figures to have several more players drafted between the second and seventh rounds on Friday and Saturday -- with cornerback Brandon Boykin, tight end Orson Charles and center Ben Jones figuring to be the next Bulldogs off the board.

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Recruiting rewind: NFL draftees

April, 26, 2012
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Recruiting Rewind Insider: Looking back at the top prospects in the NFL draft, including UGA's Cordy Glenn, reveals how far former top-notch recruits have come -- as well as how different college football could have been had some recruiting battles gone another way.
Insider ESPN's Todd McShay will have a final update on the first round Thursday morning in the hours leading up to the first overall pick, but here's a match-up of prospects to team needs up and down the board, which includes Georgia's Cordy Glenn going to Cleveland in the first round and Orson Charles heading just down the road to the Falcons in the third round.

Scouts Inc.'s NFL draft cheat sheets

April, 25, 2012
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Scouts Inc. breaks down the 2012 class in each position group, including the top prospects in each of the position-specific categories Scouts uses in evaluations, along with a listing of all draft-ready prospects, four-year combine averages, picks in Rounds 1-2, and three-year market trends for each position.

Offense
Quarterback
Running back
Wide receiver
Tight end
Offensive lineman

Defense
Defensive lineman
Linebacker
Defensive back

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Recruits at Nike's The Opening were asked who they thought was the biggest freak athlete in the class. The consensus was defensive end Josh Sweat, who recently moved up to the No. 1 spot in the ESPN 300.
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