Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

A Big Pile of Blue Chips for Bulldogs

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

A Big Pile of Blue Chips for Bulldogs

Article excerpt

So Florida and Florida State compiled their typical hauls of top

recruits on national signing day for college football prospects.

That was expected.

The unexpected was Georgia, until this year an afterthought

compared to FSU and Florida's signing classes. The Bulldogs

played recruiting poker for some of the top talent in the

Southeast and left the table with a pile of blue chips.

Blue-chip prospects, that is.

"Our goal this year was to make sure that we took care of our

state and to go into the contiguous states and go after some

premier players," coach Jim Donnan said after Georgia signed 23

players to grants-in-aid on national signing day.

"We were able to do that."

Georgia signed 14 SuperPrep All-Americans, representing more

than a 5 percent share of the 259 chosen nationwide, plus two

former SuperPrep All-Americans (Jasper Sanks, Quincy Carter).

Ten were defensive choices, and the Bulldogs beat out some of

the Southeast's major powers for many of them.

For William Witherspoon and Terreal Bierra, they beat out both

FSU and Florida, among others. Florida recruited Bulldogs

signees Terin Smith and David Jenkins; FSU recruited Rian Cason

and David Jacobs.

For Jessie Miller, Georgia beat out Tennessee and Alabama.

And opposing coaches were the first to admit it.

"I think the thing I've noticed is he [Donnan] has made some

big inroads with the high school coaches," Jeff Bowden said.

"Before, I can remember comments that they hadn't been in the

schools as much. Now it's hard to go into those schools when you

know how much they like the change."

Said Florida's Steve Spurrier: "They got one or two defensive

players that we thought we were good with," referring to Terin

Smith. "It's [Folkston, Smith's hometown] sort of a Georgia

community. …

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