Top UGA recruit injures knee, out for year (UPDATED)

After Jayson Stanley got the news about his season-ending knee injury, one of the first people he called was UGA coach Mark Richt.

The 4-star wide receiver from Creekside High School committed to UGA over Auburn, among others, only a few weeks ago. Stanley tore his ACL in Creekside’s opener last weekend.

“It was a great conversation,” Yvette Stanley told the AJC. “Coach Richt just said he was still looking forward to Jayson being part of UGA. He knew that Jayson would get right back to where he was. We’re just excited.

“We’re excited about being part of the family at UGA. We’re grateful for the fans. The fans that have reached out to Jayson on Twitter have been so positive. And we’re appreciative.

“Kudos to the University of Georgia for embracing Jayson and our family. We are blown away by the love they have shown to us.”

Richt assured Stanley that UGA still wanted him just as badly, despite the injury. They didn’t really talk about whether or not the scholarship would be honored by UGA because Stanley knew that was part of the deal when he committed.

“Coach Rich said don’t worry about anything,” Yvette said. “They’re going to honor the scholarship, there’s no question about that. There has never been a question. He is a stand-up guy. We didn’t discuss it, and we didn’t have to. He had already told us if anything ever happened that Jayson was part of the Georgia family.”

Last year as a junior, Stanley caught 41 passes for 817 yards and 16 touchdowns while leading Creekside to the Class AAAAA state championship. He’s rated as the state’s No. 22 overall college football prospect.

The 6-foot-2, 210-pounder injured his knee after planting his foot awkwardly while turning around to catch a pass.

“It’s just unfortunate,” Yvette said. “He immediately knew something was wrong. He didn’t know what. He was down for a minute.”

Stanley underwent an MRI on Monday, and got the test results the next day. After telling his Creekside teammates and UGA, Stanley revealed the devastating news on Twitter.

“He is an awesome kid,” his mother said. “I’m very proud of him because he is not moping. He’s not having any pity. It’s just like ‘What do I need to do?’

“He’s got the right attitude and he’s embraced that he’s going to have to have surgery. He’s going to be working very hard to get back to 100 percent and he will. He’s a very a resilient kid. He’s got good support. That’s just so important.

“But he is really pulling for his teammates, and he is looking forward to the opportunity to have an impact with them as a leader still on the team. You can’t ask for anything more in this situation. He is just very resilient.

Below is a video interview with Stanley from last Thursday. He talks about many UGA topics, including why he went ahead and committed early.

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