February 2, 2010

Bulldogs brace for Signing Day

One thing's for sure, it's been a few years since there's been this much angst among Georgia fans heading into National Signing Day, which kicks off Wednesday morning at 7 a.m.

That's when Alpharetta High wide receiver Michael Bennett and Walton High defensive end Brandon Burroughs - who missed all of last year with a torn ACL - are expected to sign their respective names on the dotted lines, becoming the newest members of Georgia's 2010 class.

"Growing up, you would say you see "your team" play or you root for "your team", but they are not really your team because you are not a part of it. Now it is different, and it is really cool being able to say that they are literally your team," Burroughs told UGASports.com. "I have enjoyed the experience, and knowing I will be in that spot next year is kind of surreal to me right now."

have two new players in the fold: Safety Jakar Hamilton and offensive lineman Kolton Houston are already enrolled in school, having technically inked their scholarships last month, but that's obviously not what has many Georgia fans on the verge of online hari-kari.

At 9:45 a.m., five-star receiver Da'Rick Rogers is supposed to finally make it official as to which school he will attend - Georgia or Tennessee.

Rogers remains committed to the Bulldogs, but after back-to-back weekend trips to Knoxville, speculation has swirled that the Calhoun High star is about to change his mind.

Time will tell.

Many have questioned why Rogers would have a press conference to announce his school being that he's supposedly committed to the Bulldogs. Tuesday night, Telvin Smith did the same. The Lowndes linebacker was a Seminole commitment but still took part in a press conference to announce his choice; ultimately that he was keeping his word to Florida State.

Rogers' plans remain a mystery.

Calhoun coach Hal Lamb has not spoken to his player in a number of days, an in a text with UGASports, Rogers' mother Debra declined a request for an interview.
Rogers has not returned texts or emails for several days.

But despite all the angst, it's not like the Bulldogs will be signing a class full of slugs.

Even should Rogers choose the Vols, four-star defensive tackle Garrison Smith (1:30 p.m. signing), four-star defensive end T.J. Stripling (noon), four-star offensive lineman Brent Benedict (10:15 a.m.) and four-star safety Alec Ogletree (8:45 a.m.) all rank among the country's top 100 players according to Rivals.com.

Ogletree should help the Bulldogs as soon as next year.

Arguably the most athletic player in Georgia's 2010 class, many project the 6-3, 215-pounder to eventually become an outside linebacker, although Ogletree still sees himself as a safety on the collegiate level.

"I worked on my stance, and tried to improve my man to man coverage while I was down there," Ogletree said. " People see me and say I should be an outside linebacker, and some of them thought I should put my hand on the ground and come off the edge at the next level. But I think I showed them I can play safety in college."

The rest of Georgia's current commitments - three-star quarterback Hutson Mason (8 a.m.), three-star cornerback Derek Owens (8:30 a.m.), three-star running back Alexander Ogletree (8:45 a.m.), four-star defensive end Dexter Morant (9 a.m.), four-star running back Ken Malcome (noon), three-star linebacker Demetre Baker (noon) and three-star defensive back Mark Deas (noon) should all be signed around lunchtime.

Not that there's not liable to be some other excitement before then.

Four-star defensive tackle Mike Thornton of Stephenson High will make his choice at approximately 9 a.m. and counts Georgia among the schools he's is considering.

Other undecided names still on Georgia's radar who are believed to have the Bulldogs in their final two are three-star athlete Jordan Akins and a quartet of four-star wide receivers in Adrian Coxson, Kadron Boone and wide receiver Christian Green.

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