April 28, 2011

Freshmen held firm

AUGUSTA - It happens every year.

The earlier players give their verbal commitment, the longer it gives others time to try and convince them to change their mind.

That was the gist of an answer head coach Mark Richt gave regarding Georgia's incoming class of players, known as the "Dream Team."

Although many, like Amarlo Herrera, Corey Moore and Sterling Bailey, committed to the Bulldogs relatively early in the process, Richt said that didn't mean he and his staff could rest on their laurels once they did.

"What happens is when the season starts going crummy, other coaches try to sway them, and even the media and these Internet gurus," Richt said. "They'll call these kids and ask, 'Are you sure you want to go to Georgia?"

Richt said it turned out he needn't have worried at all.

"I got calls from recruits and they were encouraging me," Richt said. "They told me they believed in me and what we were doing."

As for one of the classes biggest fish, running back Isaiah Crowell, Richt he still wasn't 100 percent sure what the former Carver star was going to do until he made the announcement on TV.

"I was pretty sure, but I wasn't 100 percent sure. When he did there were cheers all over the Butts-Mehre Building," Richt said. "There were cheers all over the campus; people were on their cell phones. It was a very dramatic finish to recruiting; very positive."

Richt added the incoming freshmen have already made an impact on the program without having even stepped foot on campus.

All signees are expected to arrive on campus by June 6.

"I think it's excited our current players because they know they're coming to town," Richt said. "You look at Kwame Geathers. Kwame was affected by Johnathan Jenkins signing and when he did, a lot of people penciled him into that starting spot at nose. Well, Kwame didn't think too much about it and did something about it. Our guys know they have to hook it up."

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