Posted: 11:51 pm Tuesday, April 29th, 2014
By Michael Carvell
UGA and Georgia Tech coaches hit the road this week for the NCAA’s spring evaluation period.
They will visit high schools across the state and the Southeast to check on prospects.
Mark Richt offered some insight on UGA’s chain of command in both evaluating and offering a high school football player. (He references recruiting coordinator Bryan McClendon, linebackers coach Mike Ekeler, and defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt)
“Everybody in their (recruiting territory) needs to locate players that can play championship football, that can handle the academics at Georgia, and that can also graduate from Georgia,” Richt said. “And we’re also looking for guys who are going to behave in the right way.
“So that’s (the area recruiter’s) job to find him, and we certainly want the position coach to want him, too. But the coordinator is also a big part of that decision-making process. You know, when McClendon finds a guy who is a middle linebacker, we want Ekeler to see him. And usually they watch it together. Pruitt, Eckert and the whole defensive staff are probably looking at the film together. But there may be a time when Ekeler is watching him by himself and really likes what he’s seeing, especially when it’s during the season and things are flying fast. He may say, ‘Hey, Jeremy, I need you to look at this guy. I want to offer this guy.’ So (Pruitt) will look at it, and they’ll agree that they want to offer this guy. And then they’ll come to me. Then I will put the final stamp on it.”
So does a UGA offer have to come directly from Richt? Or does an assistant have the freedom to do it? (This recently was a point of confusion)
“I’m not saying that the assistant coaches won’t be the ones to say to the prospects ‘that you’re offered a scholarship’ — or to the high school coach, ‘we’re going to offer your kid,’” Richt explained. “But before we do that, I want to approve it. A lot of times I will be the one to make the offer over the phone, or when he’s here on an unofficial visit. But there are plenty of times that the assistant coaches or coordinators will let them know as well.
“As far as the go ahead, I want to make sure I see them and know about them before we do that.”