The 2014 class was really my first class that I got to sink my teeth into early and watch them develop from their sophomore season onward. There are some great players in this class, some future All Americans and future NFL players. Will I nail them all on this list, well I’m going to try. Here is my 2 deep roster if I could create a class solely based on players from the 2014 class in Georgia. I think these are the best of the best and should have productive collegiate careers if no unforeseen circumstances occur.
DeShaun Watson– Gainesville High School- Watson graduated as the most statistically prolific Quarterback in the history of high school football in the great state of Georgia. It would be blasphemous if he was not pulling the trigger for the 2014 All Georgia team. I had the pleasure of watching Watson play live multiple times and he was one of the most complete Quarterbacks I have seen. He had amazing control of the offense, could make a ton of throws, and if it came to it he could pull it down and hurt the defense with his legs. He will likely be the starter at Clemson sooner than later.
Stephen Collier– Lee County High School- I thought there were a couple of choices here, but I really liked Collier’s game and as much as I dislike Ohio State, his game will fit in nicely with their style of play. He’s got that south Georgia toughness, but he’s also a freak of an athlete and will be dynamic in their running game in the coming years. He’s got raw arm talent to work with and a great work ethic to back it all up. I wish him all the best as he heads north, just not his team.
Nick Chubb– Cedartown High School- If I don’t put Chubb number one on this list, I get shunned for all time. But like Watson, there is no need to outthink the wheel here because Chubb is a beast. You don’t see a guy as well put together as Chubb walking down the streets, not ones that can run like him. He might face a slight learning curve when he gets to college, but I’d honestly be shocked if he takes a redshirt.
Adam Choice– Thomas County Central- At one time I said Choice was a top 5 player in the state and I might have been slightly optimistic, I still would absolutely take him on my team at the end of the day. It looks like he bulked up to prepare for college in his senior season to prepare for college, but his balanced and elusiveness remained. Just be glad that Georgia Tech was not able to convince him to be their Quarterback because he could have been a problem in that system. He might not that be that elite burner that you’re used to seeing in the Clemson backfield, but he will be a complete 3 down back for them.
Treyvon Paulk- Milton High School- Unfortunately, Paulk was robbed of his senior season due to injury. I hope he is able to recover and return to form because he is a pleasure to watch run and will provide a homerun dynamic for Tennessee. He might have been the straight line fastest Runningback in the state before the injury, but also runs so low to the ground that he’s hard to see behind a big line and can pick up consistent yardage between the tackles.
Rodney Smith- Mundy’s Mill High School- For those that have been around for a while, you know I have been pushing this kid for a while. He missed a lot of his junior season because of injury, but was able to bracket that year with some impressive film. He started picking up some BCS offers late in the process thanks to the trickledown effect of Dalvin Cook leaving Florida (thank you Dalvin). I fully expect Smith to go up to Minnesota and have a great career in the Big 10, one to remember.
Nate Brown– North Gwinnett High School- To start off, this Wide Receiver class might be the deepest position in the state. I’ve said in the past there are at least 10 kids I would be comfortable with UGA signing at this position, but of course we couldn’t take all of them. However, I really would have like to have Brown if I could have chosen one. He is extremely smooth in his routes at 6’3 and 215 pounds, but the thing that separates him from the rest is his ability to track the ball and high point it with strong hands down the field. He is likely the best possession receiver in the state and can pluck the ball out of the air with the best of them.
Rashad Canty- Riverdale High School- Some people think Canty grows into a Tight End and it wouldn’t shock me, but for now I’ll classify him as a receiver. At 6’4 and 215 pounds he’s one of the most physically dominant receivers in the state. Then you add in his athleticism and he is going to be a tough mismatch wherever he plays in college. Vanderbilt really stole one in the 11th hour here.
Demarre Kitt– Sandy Creek High School- Kitt does not compare physically to the first two receivers on the first team, but what makes him great is his smoothness. He is probably the best route runner in the state and is going to be tough to cover for any young corner. He also has a great pair of hands and can secure the football if the quarterback can get it to him.
Shakenneth Williams– Rutland High School- Williams is one of the more raw receivers in the state, but when you are looking at physical attributes, there are few that you would take above him. He’s got the speed to get over the top and the shear power to dominate smaller corners on the outside. It might take Williams a little longer to develop in college, but he could grow into a nice receiver for Georgia down the road.
TL Ford- Cartersville High School- Ford is a very pretty looking receiver. He is long, he is lean, he has big hands to pluck the ball out of the air. He is a gigantic safety net wherever he is on the field and will go get the ball for his Quarterback. I’ll just take the opportunity here to state that UNC-Charlotte are quickly building a very respectable football program. If there are any Charlotte Dawgs reading, it will be worth going to watch them play as they will be a competitive mid major sooner rather than later.
Tevish Clark- Early College at Carver- This one was tough for me, am I really going to put a kid who will likely end up at Georgia State over one who was at one time committed to Georgia, yes I am. Go watch his highlight tape, then you can tell me I’m wrong. Clark as far as high pointing the football in jump ball situations is the best in the state. Other parts of his game need some fine tuning, but he has mastered the hardest skill to teach for a receiver of tracking and adjusting to the football.
Andrew Marshall- West Forsyth High School- This one hurts me deep down inside. I fully believe that Marshall is the best lineman in the state and he is going to the Trade School on North Avenue. I can’t fault him on the decision, I just hope for his sake they have a head coaching change in the near future because I fully believe he could be an NFL player if he has experience in a non-flexbone based offense. I expect him to start at Tech for at least 3 years once he gets settled in down there.
Dyshon Sims– Lowndes High School- Sims might not have the height of your typical bookend tackle, but he has everything else. He’s got great length that makes up for his “lack of height” and more athleticism than just about anyone in the state. He is a terrific run blocker and plays with a fire in his belly. I don’t think it’s out of the question that he starts against Clemson, but he would have to be a natural at pass blocking which in my best guess will take longer than a summer to develop.
Terrone Prescod- Columbia High School- If I’m taking a Guard out of the state this year, it’s probably going to be Prescod. I think he got a bit too heavy as a senior, but once he gets on a true S&C regiment he will find that athleticism that he displayed when he was the best lineman at the 2012 Rising Seniors Game. His reasoning for going to NC State was that he felt he could go there and start immediately then leave for the NFL in 3 years. Most players I would scoff at that reasoning, but it wouldn’t shock me in Prescod’s case.
Wyatt Miller- Coffee County High School- I hate to say it, but Georgia should have offered this kid. He’s got the frame and loose athletic ability that you just don’t see from players who are 6’6 and 275 pounds. He’s got future left tackle written all over him. Central Florida straight up stole this one.
Jake Edwards– Heard County High School- I really like the position flexibility that Edwards brings to the table. I don’t like comparing players, but he reminds me a bit of Clint Boling in that aspect that he could really play any position along the line. His frame is good enough, he’s got great grit and motor, and he can move for a big guy. Basically he meets all of the check marks for me and I think he will contribute down the road at Georgia.
Owen Painter- Grayson High School- The thing I like about Painter is the violence in his game. You can tell he plans to execute his block first and foremost, but he also plans to try and put someone on their back. At 6’5 and 260 pounds, he could play Tackle down the line if he gets the footwork down in pass pro, but he has the demeanor, size and athleticsm you want to see in a Guard if that doesn’t work out.
Orlando Brown- Peachtree Ridge High School- I was a big time detractor of Brown’s for a long time. He was massively overweight, showed little dedication to the game, and was near stagnant on the football field. For about a year now, he has really gotten into much better football shape and has focused more on technique than he had previously shown. He is still not the dominating force that you would expect at 6’8 and 340 pounds, but his stock is trending upwards.
Christian Harris– Collins Hill High School- I always though Harris would be a nice project to throw a scholarship for a 4th-5th Offensive Line spot. He is extremely raw in his technique, but he has all of the physical and mental attributes you want to see for a potential Offensive Tackle. He’ll need a couple of years of grooming and work on cleaning out some of his footwork, but he should turn into something down the road.
Jake Sanders– Carrollton High School- If this were an “All Goon Team” Sanders would probably be a Captain. He is a big, tough, and mean Offensive Lineman. Unfortunately, I’ve also seen him get abused in pass protection, but that was outside of his natural position of Guard and in a camp scenario so I don’t give it a whole lot of thought. Bottom line is Duke is getting a nice combo of big, tough, and athletic lineman out of Georgia this year.
Justin Brown- Lovejoy High School- Brown has a great deal of just raw, untapped power. He’s got that big butt, big thighs, and a nice gut to boot. Once he gets into a college weight program he could really flourish and become one of the better linemen to come out of this class. He’ll never be a Tackle, but I wouldn’t mind running behind him either.
Clinton Burkes (ManOnFire)
Countdown To Kickoff 2015
Bulldawg Illustrated's Countdown to Kickoff Fan Festival is a day for fans of all ages to get up close and personal with their favorite Dawgs.
Where: Sanford Stadium in Athens, Ga (2014 Pics HERE, HERE and HERE)
When: Saturday, July 11th 12:00pm - 3:00pm
Cost: Individual Tickets are $25 each - Family Packages are $75 each and include 4 tickets and refreshments at the event