Georgia Tech’s most-heavily recruited football signee was Anree Saint-Armour.
The 3-star defensive end from North Gwinnett High School was only one of two 2015 prospects from the state of Georgia to take all five official visits, along with linebacker Roquan Smith of Macon County High School (he signed with UGA).
Saint-Armour also had an intense courtship with Ohio State, and ultimately declined a scholarship offer from the reigning national champions.
“Missouri was leading as my senior season started,” Saint-Armour told the AJC. “Then more offers started coming in. Then it was Ohio State for a little bit until that offer went away because somebody else committed there. Then it was tied between Michigan State and Stanford. And then Georgia Tech got in there.
“I started thinking about being close to family, and that Georgia Tech offered the same kind of education as Stanford. As I thought about it more seriously, in terms as the whole aspect of going off to college and instead of playing football – that’s when Georgia Tech took the lead.”
Saint-Armour had caught the attention of Ohio State’s coaches after attending camp there last summer. When the Buckeyes finally extended a scholarship offer, Saint-Armour said he was encouraged to commit sooner than later because that spot could be taken at any moment.
“They gave me a few months to decide on the offer, but my parents had never visited the school,” he said. “We were trying to get up there, but we never were able to do it. They told me my spot might be taken if I didn’t commit. But my family couldn’t get down there so I wasn’t ready to commit.
Saint-Armour said he doesn’t have any regrets about turning down the champs. “No sir. Hopefully, we’ll get a national championship at Georgia Tech soon.”
Here’s more of the “Recruiting Rewind” with Saint-Armour reflecting on the recruiting process:
You signed with Tech. Who finished runner-up? “Michigan State.” What, if anything, could they have done better? “It would’ve really just have been located closer to home.”
Biggest rumor about you that wasn’t true? “Probably that I wasn’t big enough to play big-time football on the defensive line.” How about a recruiting rumor? “People thought I was going to Missouri for a long time just because they were my first offer. They led for me for a little bit. But afterwards, no.” What about the rumor you were going to commit to Stanford? “Yes, that was out there, too. The truth was that it was too far away for my liking. I felt like I could get a great education here in Georgia, right down the road (at Tech). And that was without having to go all the way out to California.”
Which school disappointed you the most? “Maybe Clemson. I was kind of waiting for an offer from them, but I never got it.” What happened? “They didn’t like me, I guess.”
Which coach was hardest to turn down? “Probably Michigan State’s Mark Dantonio. Our conversation didn’t go bad, but it was hard just because of the relationship that we built.”
Most creative thing a college did to get your attention? “Some colleges sent me a poster photo of myself, some crazy thing like that. Iowa did that. And Georgia Tech did it, too.” How would you describe the photo that Tech sent you? “It was a picture of me on the football field, and it had a honeycomb behind it. It was pretty nice.”
Biggest regret in recruiting? “Probably not taking it seriously earlier in the recruiting process. Just like looking into all the schools, and doing all of my own research. But after that, I don’t really have a lot of regrets.”
Most memorable thing that happened on a recruiting trip? “Going out to eat during my official visit at Minnesota. That was probably one of the best nights eating out that I’ve ever had. I ate so much.”
Saint-Armour, who has beefed up to 6-foot-3 and 245 pounds, reports to Tech on June 16.