Early signing day, Georgia edition

Here’s the thumbnail sketch:

  • Positions: four linebackers, four offensive linemen, four defensive backs, three defensive linemen, two wide receivers, one tight end, one running back and one quarterback;

  • Rankings: four 5-stars, 11 4-stars and five 3-stars.

  • Locations: 12 players from Georgia, two from Alabama, and one each from California, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas.

The most extraordinary thing about this class is how ordinary it seems.  I mean that as a compliment.  Georgia is again going to finish with a national top-three recruiting class under Kirby Smart and it’s almost to the point of being ho-hum.  That, despite it being accomplished in the face of strong pandemic headwinds.  It’s been an enormous challenge and it’s to Smart’s credit that he’s landed another strong group.

A few specific observations:

  • Over half the 2021 group comes from in state, which is a strong reversal of recent trends in Georgia’s recruiting.  Some of that was driven, no doubt, by COVID restrictions that hampered the way Smart normally goes about his business.  But it’s worth noting that the high school crop in Georgia this year was very strong and Kirby made sure he got his fair share of that.
  • Another reason early signing day seems a bit low key is because there really weren’t any surprises.  Georgia signed whom it expected to sign, or, as Kirby put it, “We have what we expect to have today.”
  • One thing I appreciate about this group is how balanced it looks on paper.  There is quality at every level and no real need to overload a particular position.  That’s what the luxury of building top-three classes on top of each other for five years gets you.
  • That being said, it’s obvious the key signee is Brock Vandagriff.  It’s been said ad nauseam that you aren’t going to win these days without a stud quarterback and he appears to fit the bill in that regard.  More importantly, it sets up something Georgia hasn’t seen in years:  assuming JT Daniels returns next season, the opportunity to organize a smooth transition at quarterback with highly rated talent.  I don’t think it can be understated how big that would be, not just for the next two or three years, but, considering how organized Georgia’s recruiting is, perhaps for the next decade.
  • The other takeaway of note is the size of the early signing group.  Georgia signed 20 kids yesterday, which means there are still open spots.  How those are going to be filled, between February signings and transfers (more on that in another post), will be something to watch.  Smart tried to pretend things were up in the air yesterday when he said, “Unfortunately, we have to get the groceries before we know what we need,” but I suspect he knows a lot more about it than he’s letting on.

If you want a deep dive on what Georgia’s done, you might want to watch this:

What’s your take on yesterday’s doings?


Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting

21 responses to “Early signing day, Georgia edition

  1. TN Dawg

    Alabama keeps getting richer.

    4 of the nation’s top 10 receiver prospects.


    • mp

      That was my unfortunate takeaway. Great class but we did not seem to pull the elite offensive skill position talent, and they did.


      • classiccitycanine

        That’s because we already have that talent on our roster. This year was never going to be a big year for skill talent recruits given who we have back. Last year we signed 3 top 100 WR so I think Kirby gets it.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Down Island Way

      You know CKS is well aware of what the bammers are gathering, UGA’s O.C. and better than average play on the “O” side will slooowly change that…


    • Russ

      Bama had much great need at WR than we do because of what they are losing. Next year we need to be the ones gathering the top WR recruits.

      Liked by 1 person

    • bigjohnson1992

      Crazy right? I get it though. Bama is serving up first round potential to these recruits.


  2. akascuba

    Another 5 star day for Kirby. It’s amazing what he has accomplished with recruiting. We are now on pare with Bama and it doesn’t get any better.
    The QB situation seems settled finally. The future could not look better.
    Not in my lifetime has this level of talent been stacked up annually. Stay healthy JT a lot is riding on you.


  3. RangerRuss

    This class defines reloading.

    Liked by 5 people

  4. Biggen

    We missed on a couple guys but it’s still a damn fine class. Especially since as you mentioned we only signed 20.

    There are rumblings that there will be some current players hitting the portal. We already saw JJ enter this week. We are gonna definitely need to find some CBs or two as well.


  5. Josh Hancher

    Added some Net YPP Data for GTP


  6. RR said it best above. There seems to be a lot of talent in this class even with the depth chart we have.

    For those you who discount Vandagriff’s level of competition, he led PACS to hammer the 5-time defending A Private state champions (Eagle’s Landing Christian) last Friday. The kid is the real deal. If he were at one of the traditional power programs regardless of classification, he would likely be even more highly rated than he is now.


    • dawg100

      That he was Oklahoma’s only qb choice/recruit this year says it all. Although I’m not sure we wouldn’t have been in even better position had OU kept Brock and UGA gotten the kid from DC (Gonzaga). It’ll be interesting to see who got the better of that.


  7. W Cobb Dawg

    Kirby has turned signing day into a yawner. Just an incredible recruiter. What more can be said?


  8. Roster management, Kirby is on the mutha…he loads up on the frontend with recruiting like few others can, and on the back end he works the portal to fill in gaps as a result of attrition. Honestly, if he had a super power, it would be roster management. And once the pieces all come together, our Dawgs will be dangerous on all 3 sides of the ball…and with that more titles will come…Go Dawgs

    Liked by 1 person

  9. The only “negative” from yesterday was the WR haul lacking “star” power, but that was to be expected after the group Kirby brought in last year at that position. I believe UGA was the school with 3 or 4 Top Ten WR recruits last year.

    Bama is unbelievable with the OL and WR classes once again. Crazy what they bring in on a consistent basis now in those two areas.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. mp

    I wonder how Kirby is viewing Tray Scott’s recruiting prowess. Unless we miraculously pulled Foreman, pretty weak DL showing in a year we’re going to lose Jordan Davis. Our top rated DT was #11 in the position. Top rated DE was #13 as a SDE…


  11. On our future at QB…We had Eason, Fromm and Fields lined up. One injury and that evaporated to one. I’d really like to know how good Beck is and hope we keep three in the mix, not two that can quickly become one again.


    • Russ

      It’s really hard to keep a kid at QB backup these days, unless he’s just happy to be there. I guess you need to find that undiscovered 3* diamond, get him on the team and keep him around for when your 5* gets injured. Trying to string out 5* talent is tough because those kids are going to leave and go somewhere to show their talent.

      Hope we can keep Beck around. JT starting next year, and let Beck/Vandagriff fight for backup. But it’s definitely the hardest spot to manage.

      Liked by 1 person