There was consternation for some Georgia fans when the Bulldogs’ recruiting class stood at just 19 players after the national letter-of-intent from Lowndes outside linebacker Josh Harvey-Clemons finally arrived on Thursday morning.
A day later, Georgia’s roster was down another three players when Nick Marshall, Chris Sanders and Sanford Seay were kicked off the team.
All of which leaves the number of players that will have come to Georgia as scholarship players now at 75 by my count. (That’s not including walk-ons put on scholarship like Ty Frix, Blake Sailors and Brandon Harton). The NCAA limits programs to 85 scholarships total.
Georgia’s total scholarship number won’t keep the Bulldogs from likely being a top 10 team next preseason, but it sets off alarm bells to some considering it’s only February.
There’s still months ahead in this offseason for more attrition via transfer, medical disqualifications, a recruit not qualifying or players that may get booted off the team. Remember, defensive backs Jakar Hamilton and Derek Owens transferred during the 2011 season and Jordan Love after it.
Georgia could still try to add to this recruiting class.
There was chatter this weekend about Georgia Military College athlete Mario Alford joining this class, perhaps as a defensive back. The Bulldogs’ coaching staff has him on their radar at this point, according to GMC coach Bert Williams.
Bulldogs coach Mark Richt said that the 6-7 season in 2010 and the 0-2 start last season impacted Georgia’s recruiting haul this year even though coaches were able to get Josh Dawson to switch from Vanderbilt to Georgia on signing day. While Georgia still landed a well-regarded class that includes its share of potential impact players including Jordan Jenkins, Keith Marshall and John Theus, some targets went elsewhere.
“Now we just have tremendous momentum right now even working into next year’s class already,” Richt said.
Georgia awarded eight walk-ons scholarship last August when it was in a similar boat numbers-wise. Looks like several guys will get similar news again this preseason.
–Please follow me at Twitter.com/marcweiszer