Posted: 8:41 pm Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

Georgia’s No. 1 junior commits to Clemson 

By Michael Carvell

Mitch Hyatt (left) blocking Lorenzo Carter (AJC)

Mitch Hyatt (right) blocking Lorenzo Carter (AJC)

As expected, the early candidate to be the state’s No. 1 prospect for next year committed to Clemson on Wednesday night.

North Gwinnett High School’s Mitch Hyatt picked the ACC school over Ohio State, while also considering UGA, Alabama and Auburn.

The 5-star offensive lineman was always considered a “lock” for Clemson due to family connections. His uncle, Dan Benish, played on Clemson 1981 national championship team, along with four seasons for the Atlanta Falcons.

Clemson closed the deal with Hyatt during last weekend’s Junior Day.

“We went to Clemson this past weekend, and we had the kind of visit that he and his mother needed to have,” Benish told the AJC. “They got a lot of questions answered. The piece that we were missing from the Clemson side was academics, and we spent all day on Saturday dealing with that.

“Once his mother and him got their questions answered, he pretty much got it in his mind ‘Why should I prolong this? Everywhere I go, I keep coming back to Clemson. I keep comparing it Clemson.’

“He wanted to get it over with so he can concentrate on football, school and his senior year at North Gwinnett. He won’t have to worry about going on visits, dealing with coaches, and all that kind of stuff. He had his mind made up and he’s ready to move forward.”

The 6-foot-5, 270-pound Hyatt has been going to Clemson games since he was knee-high to a grass hopper.

“There was never any pressure from me to pick Clemson,” Benish said. “But there has been a brain-washing going on since he was five or six years old. Never pressure, but a little brain-washing. And being around Clemson, whether we went there for a game or watched it on TV. I have a bunch of Clemson memorabilia around my house, whether it’s Clemson t-shirts or sweatshirts for his birthdays.”

It’s super early in the 2015 rankings, but Hyatt currently mans the top spot in the 247sports.com composite rankings. He will be challenged for No. 1 by Westover DL Trenton Thompson and Callaway DB Terry Godwin (committed to UGA). Hyatt will also have a challenge holding off McEachern’s Chuma Edoga and Mill Creek’s Kaleb Kim for the top spot among the state’s best offensive linemen.

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33 comments
Ball_Coach
Ball_Coach

Ms Richt only got 7 or the top 70 Georgia recruits. That is what we come to expect from Ms Richt. That is why FU_GA is competing with Vandy and Kentucky to get into the middle tier of the SEC.

Ball_Coach
Ball_Coach

Ole Richer asleep at the wheel again. FU_GA fans should still be content with their ball coach. They are staying the course.

kerryb
kerryb

Trenton Thompson will be #1

Gman84
Gman84

Why would we waste a scholarship on a 5 star OL? Just not the UGA way

Snagglepuss
Snagglepuss

@ Big C  75:


The primary reason this made such a splash is this is the O N L Y time in history that Saban(aka the 8th dwarf) made such a move!!!!  I'm certain his advisors told him it would aid in improving his image!!!!!!

Snagglepuss
Snagglepuss

Why do MOST related articles of this nature state that RECRUIT  XXXXX  and his MOTHER visited XXXXXXX University???


Where are the DADS??????

caneowar
caneowar

2 points. First, Saban only gave Shaw that scholarship, because he fully expects Shaw to have a full recovery. Which leads to my second point. Sense Saban yet again over-signed by 6 or 7 kids, who's gonna lose their scholarships? Shaw will lose his if he isn't prepared to play football by his soph year. 

Classof98
Classof98

Michael, whoever posted the photo accompanying the column either doesn't know Hyatt from Carter or they don't know right from left.

Coach7
Coach7

It seems as if Michael "Ice Cream" Carvell has forgot about E.Shaw  & Coach Saban. I guess He & the AJC don't get ESPN because thy had a great story about this. I guess the "Ice Cream " man did not know BAMA {on paper" ad the greatest recruiting class ever. Michael "ice ream" of the recruiting season is TOOTY FRUITY!

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

Since the AJC is once again proving itself to be the cowards some of us know they are, I'd like to share what I consider the best story from NSD, courtesy of our friends at Roll Bama Roll:

Here is a story you won't hear from the national press. They only put out stories about how Nick Saban is just an evil uncaring automaton. Maybe it is because they cleverly noticed that "Saban" is one letter away from being "Satan". Maybe it is because he does not do stupid things like Les Miles or make cute little smart-a** comments like Steve Spurrier. Most likely it is because he doesn't give them anything controversial to write about.

A year ago, Elisha Shaw was a 4-star defensive tackle from Atlanta-area powerhouse Tucker High School. At 6-4.5/295, he was well on his way to a scholarship with a SEC school. But then tragedy struck when a severe neck injury suffered in the pre-season of 2013 prematurely ended his senior season.

Most schools did not stop recruiting Shaw but when doctors came back with a diagnosis that he would probably never play football again, every single school backed off on their offer (including a certain holier-than-thou in-state program which will go unnamed). Surely, mean ol' Nick Saban would turn his back on Shaw too, right? Nope. Saban kept on recruiting Shaw even inviting him up for an official visit on January 24. Shaw will probably never don the helmet and pads again but he will get a full-ride scholarship to the University of Alabama.

This young man will be able to attend Alabama on a football scholarship but it will be on a medical hardship. He did not sign an official letter of intent and medical scholarships do not count toward official recruiting numbers.

You won't see ESPN or the Wall Street Journal reporting this story but if Saban looks sideways at a reporter who asks him an idiotic question, be sure it will be front page news.

ThulsaDoom
ThulsaDoom

I notice Mike is strangely silent about Alabama's monster recruiting class, 7 scout.com 5 star recruits who also happen to be 7 of the 22 Parade high school All Americans. Last year Saban broke the scout.com record of 5 star recruits in a single class by signing 6 and breaking the old record of 5. This year the 7 he lassoed may make this class the greatest in recruiting history. He signed more 5 star recruits than he did 3 star recruits according to scout. WOW! Just WOW! 


Talked to my buddy who is a big time FSU fan. He was telling me their qb transfer to Bama (Jacob Coker) barely lost the starting job to Jameis Winston and that a lot of people say he's a much better pro style qb than Winston. 



After an 11-2 down year(yes, 11 wins is a down year at Bama), the dominance will continue. Roll Tide!

BSNBC
BSNBC

No one wants to go to Tech!

BigTimeTECHFan
BigTimeTECHFan

"The 5-star offensive lineman was always considered a “lock” for Clemson due to family connections. His uncle, Dan Benish, played on Clemson 1981 national championship team"


Not sure about lock, Andrew Butcher's dad played on that same Clemson team and NFL and he's committed to Tennessee.

Gandolph
Gandolph

Not surprising.  It would have been surprising if he made any other choice.  Best of luck to Nick in his college experience.


Now, go get Edoga and Kim for the Dawgs!

FalconsOnTop13
FalconsOnTop13

Vote for Kennesaw State for NCAA's 6th Fan!!!! Tweet the hashtag #Kensaw or go to NCAA.com/6thfan and find KSU and vote. Show your support!!!

POAD2013
POAD2013

I don't think Clem&Son beat OSU as much as family ties did.

LoyaltotheG
LoyaltotheG

Looks like a heckuva player.  I hate to see GA kids leave the state, but there are some cases where it's just inevitable....this kid's family connection to Clemson, the Berry family's connection to Tennessee, and many other cases.  Looks like the Dawgs are already building a great '15 class, but as always, they'll need to fight off programs that live off GA kids, like Clemson and Auburn.

C-Kirk
C-Kirk

With Pruitt on board I think Georgia will have their best Recruiting class in 2015 in the last 15 years. If we win the first two games Georgia is nearly assured of at least a 10 or 11 win season if not 12-0 and the SEC Championship game. Looks like L.S.U. will be favored in the East unless Alabama finds a Quarterback. Auburn will lose at least 3 games. Mason is gone and Marshall can't do it by himself. 

The SEC Championship game will be a classic  but unfortunately will guarantee  the SEC will only get one of the playoff spots.

KeepOnSmilingWetWillie
KeepOnSmilingWetWillie

So Mike when do you plan the article on the Elisa Shaw to Bama deal or does that not fit into your agenda. Stay classy.

kerryb
kerryb

@Gman84  He was NEVER going to UGA.  His family are Clemson people and he goes to Clemson games.

ATL-Football Fan
ATL-Football Fan

@Snagglepuss at work usually.  Mom's opinion is what matters most because it is usually hardest on them when the player leaves home.

FrankFraticelli
FrankFraticelli

@BigCrimson75

If you only knew one tenth of the good works CMR does at UGA you would eat that "holier than thou" crap.

Classof98
Classof98

@BigCrimson75  It's not that the AJC is full of cowards, it's that they write for the ATLANTA Journal-Constitution, and nobody really cares about Alabama.


Go back to the woods, Updyke.

nyctiger
nyctiger

@BigTimeTECHFan  Yep, but Andrew Butcher doesn't have a Clemson offer.  Honestly, his dad cost him one.  He got on TigerIllustrated and started blasting Dabo relentlessly during the 6-7 2010 season, then hopped on the bandwagon in 2011 and then started bitching last summer when Clemson wouldn't offer his son until they saw him in camp.  He took that as a slight and both of them completely hate Clemson.

C-Kirk
C-Kirk

If we win the first two games in 2014. Sorry , should have started a new paragraph.

Falcaints
Falcaints

They have to own someplace, they certainly don't own their own state. 2009-2013 five in a row

Gandolph
Gandolph

@KeepOnSmilingWetWillie  Actually no, Dabo didn't have anything to do with the kid going to Clemson games for the last 10 to 12 years.  Family doing work early......

Contractor1
Contractor1

Apparently they do, because they're always posting articles about our coach and our team.  Probably gets more attention than a Georgia article.  Dang sure riles up the 1980 National Champion fanbase.  Alabama pulls more ATLANTA talent than Georgia does, so I'd say Alabama has more than enough reason to be in the AJC.  I can't stand jealous people.

BigTimeTECHFan
BigTimeTECHFan

@nyctiger @BigTimeTECHFan 


Good Info, did not know..I seem to remember them being Tenn fans in their HS days, not sure what the relationship was back then, it was before Brian played for Clemson.