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Winners and losers in soccer in Georgia after the 2021 early signing period
Winner: Kirby Smart, Georgia State Recruiting
The goal of recruiting should not be to get the best players close to your school. The goal should be to get the best players, wherever they are in the country.
This is why it never made sense to use Kirby Smart and how he had recruited the state of Georgia in the previous two employment cycles. To be sure, Georgia has seen its fair share of talent leave the country. But it has also been inducted into Recruiting Categories # 2 and # 1 in the last two rounds.
This trend reversed itself in the 2021 cycle, as Georgia missed some of its out-of-state targets – Mason Smith and Donovan Edwards both chose to play in local state schools rather than Bulldogs – but the state was cleaned up.
The Bulldogs have signed seven of the top 11 players from Georgia. And if you remove the Miami midfielder, Jake Garcia, who didn’t even go here after moving to the state from California to play his first season, the Bulldogs signed seven of the top 10.
The 2021 Employment Category was the first time Georgia had fallen on the state’s highest probability since Kirby Smart took over. Offensive Intervention Amarius Mims received this honor this year as it ranked as the No. 7 recruit overall in the country. So this novel is definitely dead.
So when Smart was asked how this happened, he explained that the geography or proximity to Georgia had little to do with the heavy category of Bulldogs in the state.
“I want the best soccer players. I want high-level people who care about the team and love UGA. If this is a kid 15 minutes or 15 hours away then I’m very comfortable with that.”
Smart also added that while Georgia has been affected by the lack of official visits, it has also prevented many children within the state from looking to schools outside of Georgia.
The Bulldog signed another 3 recruiting class. In the past year, most of these kids have come from outside the state. This year, more of them have come from Georgia.
The truth is, Smart and his coaching staff are perfectly capable of getting the best players in the country, no matter where they come from.
Loser: the depth of the back angle of Georgia 2021
Georgia saw only one commitment canceled on Wednesday. It doesn’t come from a great perspective, but it does happen in the awkward position of need.
De’Jahn Warren, the best JUCO corner in the nation and potentially 4-star flip from Georgia to Jackson State.
You might be confused about why the Georgia defensive back has left a school that doesn’t even play at FBS level. This is where it is worth remembering that Deion Sanders is now the head coach at Jackson State. The Hall of Famer defensive back has clearly had some strong traction with another defensive back.
Georgia has already fallen into two other possibilities that are expected to be pioneers in college, landing Bulldogs 4-star Nyland Green and 4-star Kamari Lassiter. Both of these possibilities are rated higher than Warren, but with Warren arriving from the ranks of JUCO, he’s more prepared for the overall game.
The Bulldog may now need the Green and or the Lassiter to play early depending on what Eric Stokes and Tyson Campbell decide. If they both choose to become professionals, which is a very real possibility, Georgia will have some important back-up questions for the first time in a while.
It is worth remembering that Smart is one of the best defensive back coaches in the country. And Georgia has options that they could go to in a doomsday scenario, like transporting Tyrique Stevenson to one of those locations. There are also talented signers of 2020 on Kelee Ringo and Jalen Kimber who are eager to make an impact.
But Warren’s loss was definitely agonizing for Georgia on a day when it was so little drama.
Winner: Matt Locke
After Georgia signed seven offensive men in the 2020 conscription cycle, Georgia did not have to bring in massive numbers of offensive line men.
But forward coach Matt Locke made those limited points important. In his freshman year in Georgia, Luke signed four assault men in total. Three of them were ranked in the Top 100 Comprehensive Prospects list, with Mims at number seven, Mika Morris at 63, and Dylan Fairchild at 97. Each of these three men came from Georgia as well.
“I’m really excited about this group. They are athletes. They have a lot of volume. They are really good kids.” All of these guys, I can’t say enough about each one of them. Matt Locke is excited to get these guys involved and start training them. “
The fourth recruiter is potential 3-star Jared Wilson, though he shouldn’t be forgotten either. He was good enough to play with Sam Bateman, as he first committed to the program when the Arkansas coach was now still in Georgia.
“Jared Wilson was one of the people we targeted early on – size, width, hand size, athletic performance – a really good target and a hard-working one,” Smart said. “He comes from a really athletic family. He’s an amazing kid.”
In the 247 Sports Recruiter RankingThe top-ranked assistant coach in Georgia was none other than Luke. With two strong classes in a row, Luke will have a tough time pursuing this in the 2022 recruitment cycle. But it should be fun to see how he tries to top the list.
Loser: non-elite teams
From a recruiting perspective, there are five elite teams: Alabama, Ohio, Georgia, LSU and Clemson. You could probably throw Oklahoma there as well, although its success was largely limited to recruits on the offensive side of the ball.
But those top five teams mentioned dominate college football, and they always start with the recruitment. These five teams are responsible for winning everyone except one in the qualifiers since the start of the College Football match in 2014.
All these teams are distancing themselves from very good teams like Florida, Michigan, Notre Dame and University of Southern California.
Of the top 100 recruits in the county, 47 went to those top five schools. Alabama had 13 and Ohio was just behind it with 12. Bulldogs and LSU both had eight while Clemson came with six.
This means that the rest of the country came up with 53 of the top 100 opportunities.
The gap between the elite and the rest of college football is widening. We see that playing out on the field, as Alabama, Clemson and Ohio State are routinely in the Final Picture. Georgia is usually dormant as well. Notre Dame figured out how to make things interesting, as they signed four of the top 100 recruits into this tournament and appeared to be ready for a College Football Playoff for the second time in two seasons.
The college football match basically broke the sport. It has allowed the rich and powerful school, Georgia, to continue to show interest in the best talent as it is one of the few schools that can consistently sell that it can compete for a place in the College Football Playoff. Until the College Football Playoff expands, this trend of super-hiring squad will only continue. At the expense of sports.
More Georgia soccer stories from around DawgNation
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