Georgia among five teams poised for strong finish on Signing Day
February 01, 2011
Programs across the country want to finish strong in recruiting on National Signing Day. Here are the five most likely to have a big finish:
1. Georgia: Wednesday will be a huge day for the Bulldogs, who are already rolling toward the finish line. The nation's top running back prospect, Isaiah Crowell (Columbus, Ga.), linebacker Kent Turene (Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.) and defensive linemen Jeoffrey Pagan (Asheville, N.C.) and John Jenkins (Mississippi Gulf Coast College) remain as strong possibilities. Throw those potential signees on top of Top100 prospects Malcolm Mitchell, Jay Rome (Valdosta, Ga.) and Ray Drew (Thomasville, Ga.) -- all of whom have committed to the Bulldogs in recent weeks -- and it's an impressive recruiting finish for Mark Richt and the Georgia staff.
2. Florida State: Though the Seminoles have the nation's top class currently, there are still some big fish to catch. Five-star Tim Jernigan (Lake City, Fla.), the nation's top defensive tackle prospect, and five-star linebacker Tony Steward (St. Augustine, Fla.) are the two primary targets the 'Noles are pursuing. Sweeping those two would give Florida State most of the top Sunshine State talent in this class -- which is significant considering many feel the crop of Florida talent in this recruiting cycle has as many difference-makers as ever.
3. Auburn: The Tigers have two major prospects -- safety Erique Florence (Valley, Ala.) and defensive tackle Gabe Wright (Columbus, Ga.) -- announcing on National Signing Day. Offensive tackle Cyrus Kouandjio (Hyattsville, Md.), the No. 2 player in the nation, is also a player to watch for the national champions. The Tigers took standout offensive lineman Christian Westerman (Chandler, Ariz.) from Texas and also landed defensive back Marcus Roberson (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) and tight end Brandon Fulse (Fort Meade, Fla.) recently. Auburn has had a tremendous run in the last 12 months.
4. Oregon: The Ducks appear poised to possibly turn five-star athlete De'Anthony Thomas (Los Angeles, Calif.), the top overall prospect on the West Coast in this recruiting cycle, away from USC. That in and of itself makes for a huge finish. Oregon also is a possibility for defensive tackle Delvon Simmons (McKeesport, Pa.) and others. Combine that with some of the high-profile prospects the Ducks have received commitments from this month -- including Devon Blackmon and Colt Lyerla -- and it's a big finish for the Ducks.
5. Alabama: As big of a day as Wednesday is for Georgia, it's equally as big for the Crimson Tide. Kouandjio is scheduled to make his announcement around 9 a.m. One of two "franchise players" in the recruiting cycle according to 247Sports, Kouandjio is expected to pick the Tide or Auburn. Alabama fans also will be watching the Crowell and Pagan announcements and paying close attention to the decision of Nickolas Brassell (Batesville, Miss.). On Feb. 14, Alabama will learn if it gets the nation's No. 1 prospect, defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (Rock Hill, S.C.). It appears Clowney's decision will come down to the Tide or South Carolina.
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