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National Signing Day Preview
Welcome to the blog dogs podcast. I'm Herschel Gurley here as always with my co host boss, dog boss, hollywood people.
Welcome back, everyone. hope y'all enjoyed last week's podcast and we just talked about recruiting today. My favorite topic.
Yeah, this is this is boss's bag right here. So he'll probably carry a lot of water today, but I'll interject where I can. So let's kind of pick up where we left off last week. I know I'd asked you if you could bet the mortgage on if James Coley would be wearing red and black next season, if you would do it and you said you'd bet the mortgage that he wouldn't be wearing red and black on February 7. So it seems as though you're right on that, like you need to find yourself a bookie that'll take some prop that's like that, my man. Man,
I wish I could be making a killing on that. But I wish him the best at Texas a&m that seemed to be where all the tea leaves were pointing for him to go. And that's where he ended up at me with all the history with Jimbo it seemed like that's just what was gonna end up happening. So you know, he wasn't going to stay with Georgia with such a public demotion that just wasn't going to happen. We've talked about that off the pod so many times that there was no way he was going to stick with Georgia as just an associate head coach. And Georgia still has now an open spot to fill. It doesn't look like Buster folkert is going to fill that role he's been listed as something actually on the official Georgia website in the quality aspect of it. That's his official title. So I don't think that he's gonna fill that role at this point. But as I said earlier, I wish only the best and as long as he's not playing the dogs I hope you rehabilitate his career and gets another bite at that Apple at some point. Just that it's not against.
Yeah, I think this is a good fit for him. Obviously he had the history with with Jimbo first at LSU. And then when Jimbo is at FSU, so a lot of connections there. I think it's a good fit for him. I think the official title is going to be tight end coach. But I think obviously this is about recruiting probably first and foremost because he does have that those good ties to South Florida and has had success there. And you know, I think we've talked about this before that he seems very likable. I've noticed consuming all the media reports that everyone speaks highly of him he seemed to be well liked seem to be somebody that folks got along with which if you look at his recruiting success kind of makes sense, right? He probably plays really well in the living room. And that makes sense. He also does well with media members and colleagues and things of that nature. So I'm with you. I wish him the best This is not a surprise kind of like he said all the reports seem to be that he was he was going to be out the door after the mungkin hire and in all honesty, that's it's probably for the best I think it makes it less awkward for everyone involved to not kind of have that tension there whether it's spoken or unspoken. So everybody will turn the page and and start over in 2020 new decade New Beginnings for everybody. I'm with you. I wish you the best of luck I think he'll do well they're great facilities to recruit to big time program so I'm sure he'll kill it there and kind of watch from afar and we don't we don't see them for a little while do when we go back to college station. Not not soon, is it?
Not as far as I know. I think it's six, seven years we'll go while you head out that way, so he probably won't be there when the next time we head out that way. The next time we see Texas a&m
I'm going to try and make that trip that's that's on the list for me. I'm trying to see all of the SEC road stadiums have done. Tennessee Savannah nealon and Knoxville was actually at the Nick Chubb ACL game, which was also the gigantic Tennessee combat game. It was just a miserable, miserable day. It rained all morning. The smoker we had there that day for the tailgate caught on fire. So all day it was actually that was actually indicative of the whole day. It was just a gigantic smoker fire nealon was good though. I'd probably go back there. It was cool. I didn't think it was the best stadium have ever been to but worth the experience. I have been to Atlanta multiple times. We were actually with me in Atlanta for my bachelor party. We saw him play Boise State in the Power Ranger uniforms. It was not exactly a fun night either. We were also we had imbibed a little bit too much the night before. So things were a little hazy. Yep, saw Kellen
Moore pick the defense apart boy He sure did. It was
an interesting year when that the open to start the loss of self care on the next week and then what reeled off 10 straight and then got dumped shocked by LSU
and then lost that and then lost a Michigan State and white boy Kirk Cousins. And I want to paraphrase that, you know, we're both Caucasian males, but her cousins when we say this just has no clout. He is just very, very, very white.
He's about as dweeby as it gets.
Yeah, that's what we mean by that. Nothing about anything like that. It's just he doesn't look like a leader doesn't look like someone did. You know men want to follow
him? No, not my guy. Not my guy. But you know, people Minnesota single like him, but I just think he's he's just a pair of shoes, man. Well, let's kind of shift from that and talk about some James call. He was obviously a subtraction from the program. But there was an addition this week number one pro style quarterback for next year, Brock Vandergriff from down the road and Prince Avenue Christian High School announced his commitment to the dogs this week. That's exciting. I think that it's 14 miles from San Fran stadium. So legitimately a hometown kid, I think that's fantastic to keep these these big time recruits that are from the state of Georgia in state, obviously a good thing too, from a centerpiece perspective to have that foundational piece of the recruiting class be a quarterback, what were your thoughts, when you when you saw the news that he was coming to Athens,
I was extremely excited. First and foremost, if there's gonna be two sides of this camp, there's gonna be Vandergriff and there's gonna be William, this is the closest thing that meaning Caleb Williams, this is gonna be the closest thing to Trevor Lawrence versus Justin fields for the number one quarterback spot that we've seen since those two I mean, I know that was only a couple of years ago. But you know, there wasn't that real battle. Really last year for it. It really this was from what I understand. First come first serve, you know which one wanted to come to Georgia first. And to get a quarterback get a leader of your class in the fold so quickly, it's eight months now until early Signing Day, which really has become Saturday at this point, let's be realistic, and then to be the focal point of your class and to be the leader of that class and to bring other people in and then also take on the fact he's really good. People will talk about and I've seen a lot of people you know, worried about his that he plays it you know, class one a watch the film guys, he's, he's amazing. He's very accurate. The only thing that I will say that will need to be worked on a little bit, which I think monken will correct is his release looks a lot like a baseball release right now. But he's just so quick with his release, that it doesn't matter. But obviously that's in high school. Also, I didn't hear anybody complaining about our what the wide receiver Robinson that we brought in. He played Eagles Landy Christian also won a school one of the biggest rivals Brock's school. Another thing, this is a one a school that's going to be on a national televised game, I believe in November. It's been restocked its team who's the number one quarterback group for 2022. So maybe playing in a small school, but it's a big time program I in he also comes from great pedigree his dad is a coach is that his defense comes from the defensive background. So he's been looking at defenses since he learned how to play football. He's got a great background, I just I'm really excited about this kid, in case you can't tell. I think it's gonna be great for the program. And he may take a little bit time to develop but as a five star kid, I would expect if he doesn't come in and take the reins right away middle of his freshman year, I expected to be pushing for play.
Yeah, a couple of the main things I like about him You spoke to the first one is that he's a coach's kid. His dad, Greg Vandergriff is the head coach at Princeton Avenue Christian, got his coaching beginnings with Mike Smith. So he's got a lot of good pedigree there, you know, he's grown up around the game, he's got his dad's defensive perspective to lean on. So I just think that's a benefit, he's going to be able to see the defense through, you know, both pairs of glasses, which is fantastic. The other part about it is he's a multi sport athlete. So you got a kid who can do a lot of things. You always want a kid to be athletic and be able to move. And you just hope that that all translates. I think the other great thing is just from a recruiting perspective, you have a quarterback who kind of acts as that Alpha Dog in the class, hopefully he can be like the Pied Piper to get everybody else to come to. And I think guys will latch on to that, no, hey, we've got the guy who's going to lead the program on the offensive side of the ball, and we want to go be a part of that. So I think all those things are big. I think it's a it's a good piece to add this early, and then gives him some momentum going into the 2021 class and kind of keep things moving and rolling. Speaking on this year's recruiting class. I know there's a couple big names that are out there that we're looking at for national Signing Day. One being Broderick drones, the other one being such a fan print you want to speak to, to where you think those things if you were handicapping it, how solid Do you think their verbal commitments are to the dogs?
For Broderick, I think is a solid I think we're looking at 7525 at this point. I know with Auburn, you know, being the one lurking in the wings that a lot of people always get nervous about that because it's Auburn and we've been we've been down this road so many times before with players needs to be there walking down the aisle and then they seem to turn up last second and run off with awkward so I know there's that fear. He has his official coming up with them the last weekend right before national signing day. I don't see it. He's from the phone. Yeah, I think he's gonna be a dog. I think he's all dog. I think him and Luke really hit it off. I mean, let's not forget that offensive line coach for Auburn is now Matt Luke's old offensive line coach at Ole Miss. So it's not like they've had a lot of time to build a relationship either. And Luke is like a player's coach. He just like he looks Somebody I would have loved to play for. And I really feel like that. That's something that project envy and praying are gonna just gravitate to. As far as being praying. I won't say 100 because nothing's ever guaranteed life. But I'd say 88 99% as far as he goes, I think he is solid is solid can be. I mean, I listen to a lot of podcasts. I read a lot of message boards. I wish I had insider insider information, which I don't but everything seems to be that this kid is just one of those really well spoken kids really mature for his age. And he has said in an interview, I can't remember who did the interview. I wish I did. I give him credit. But in an interview that it was based solely on football, this was back when Pittman was there. I think this was poor senior season, that it was based solely on football. As far as put like putting lineman in the league. He would choose LSU or Alabama as his school but he's thinking about after school and looking at the networking after school, and Baton Rouge and Tuscaloosa don't have that type of networking capabilities that the Atlanta area does and he has a lot of family that's from Atlanta. He also has a lot of family that's moving to Atlanta. I don't think you're gonna have most of your family moved to Atlanta unless they're gonna they're moving to come see you play. That just doesn't make sense to me. So I think his is much more solid than than Roger, but I still think Broderick is is rock solid. Yeah,
I feel good about both of them. I think the Luke hire is gonna just turn out to be a home run. I mean, I loved what I heard and saw from him in the lead up to the Sugar Bowl. I there was an ESPN show I don't know if it's this past year the year before that followed old missus program. It was like a little half hour show followed them week to week for eight or nine weeks or something. Just really, really impressed with him. really impressed with the demeanor. He had really impressed with how he fired up the kids. So when I saw they hired him, I was so jacked up. I mean, I just thought it was a great hire. I think he'll be great with the kids. I think it's always a good thing to have another head coach a guy with head coaching experience in the room. Just think there's some clout to that. So I think they're both probably going to be dogs comm national signing day. You know, I'll let you speak to this just because this is your area of expertise. Just a little background here. Boston, I grew up together playing football. He was my center and I played quarterback. So he's been protected my behind for a long time. But you know, hey, this is a man, you know, this is your expertise. This is we watch the games. I'm moaning about the edge and I'm moaning about the quarterback play and boss is like, I can't believe he missed that assignment. I can't believe he didn't make that switch. So it's like hieroglyphics to me. But but this is your bag. So what do you think? What do you think the possibility if they both do commit is of them seeing early playing time next year?
I don't dislike Trey Hill, I want to point this out. I just don't think his natural fit is center. And I think that his natural fit his guard. I feel that the the hope is that he will slide into one of the guard positions. At this point in time. The assumption is that Cleveland's coming back, I don't think we've heard an official announcement yet on that. I know his ads come out and said he's coming back. But it has been injury prone in the past few seasons. So that like we don't need guard depth from everything I've seen with van Pran. He's in the right spot every single time. He may not always get the block every single time but he is in the right spot. And he gets everybody else in the right spot every single time which is extremely impressive for an 18 year old kid. To at that high class feature. There's a reason he said the number one center. Most centers in high school, they aren't just rated as a center and aren't as highly rated. I know. Two years ago, Clay Webb was rated as the center but even he said when he came in he wanted to start a guard band prance like no, I'm a center. That's that's what I am. I'm coming in as a senator. There's no plan on switching. So for him, he's got a really good head on his shoulders. He's really intelligent kid, I feel that he is going to have a good shot. If they decide to move Hill. If they're not planning on moving to Hill this year. I don't think the plan is to keep hill there his entire career. I think the plan is to move Hill around to guard at some point and either web or being prey and take his spot. My thought processes is whatever is going on with web with his situation. The reason to bring it up and praying is appropriate payment center. Maybe they see web more as a guard down now that he's been in the system for a year. As far as Roger Jones, man, that kid is strong as an ox. His technique needs some work. He is just unbelievably strong. There are times that you see him and his footwork looks a little off, but he's just so athletically gifted. Another multi sport athlete, great basketball player, so athletically gifted that guy can't get past it. And they don't even come close to getting past it because he's just so big and socially Strong and so athletic that he gets out there. He could be Andrew Thomas. He's not as technically sound as Andrew was when he came in. I don't think he's going to start right away. I don't think he's going to start at left tackle. If he does start, I think he's probably going to start on the right side. If he does start, he may not be a day one starter. I think he's probably like, mid season beat someone out. I think the offensive line is gonna be very fluid this year. To start off with, I don't think we're gonna have a set off. It's one till probably Week Six, probably, you know, we're playing Alabama, week three. So we really want to have a set line by them. But I just don't see it happening because I think it's gonna be very,
what are your thoughts on this? Because I've been thinking a lot about this since they announced the makan hire Do you think there will be an I think Matt Luke plays in this a little bit too, because I think they did some of these things at Ole Miss under his tenure. But do you think that the offensive line philosophy could shift this year from the I feel like in the SAM Pittman era, the first four years of Kirby, it's been this, we are going to be road graders that line up and physically punish you up and down the field. Not as much of this we're going to get our guys out on the edge and do the zone blocking concepts and things of that nature where we have to maybe be a little shifty or a little bit more agile. I just I know when we've watched games together, we've talked a lot about how Solomon Kenley looked in that offense. And he seemed like the prototypical guard for what their philosophy was at that time, which was we just want to line up and punch you in the mouth. But do you think with Todd monken coming in with Matt Luke coming in with the kids, they're recruiting on the offensive line, if that philosophy may shift a little bit and the O line becomes maybe more of an agile piece more of a piece that involves some movements from different reaches zones, polls, things of that nature?
I definitely do, I think that we're gonna see more, like you said, agile one, we're gonna see linemen that are going to be pulling, I think we're gonna see more linemen. Moving around, like we saw, we're gonna see more Isaiah Wynn types, for lack of a better term tackles that can move out space are still gonna be big, but they can move out in space. That's not to say that the tackles that we've had in the past could move out in space. And we saw, you know, in the past Andrew Thomas do that. We just didn't see it last year, two years ago, we
saw him move out space quite a bit. Three years ago, in 17, we saw him move out in space a lot,
we pulled a lot and 17 it seemed like when cheney was here as the OSI, there was a lot more pulling concepts, but that seemed to shift less and less than 18. And that was pretty much non existent last year. And so they're a came back a little bit towards the end of the season, but by that point, we were who we were, you can't really you know, change it at that point. But with Luke, I've heard that he prefers a little bit lighter leaner lineman, now I'd love to see the days where we bring in and you know, we have a David Andrews that you know, pulls every third play. I don't know if we can have that ever happen again. But I could see where that more agile linemen are gonna move around quite a bit more and get them out in space especially if we're gonna run the screen game or the tackles or have to get out there to help with that wide receiver screen stuff like that they're gonna have to be able to
Yeah, that's kind of where my brain was going with this I just feel like based on what they've recruited on the perimeter and what they're recruiting at the at the slot position or the or what we think are going to be guys that play in the slot and then just even what the what certain backs they have on the roster look like for example, I think James Cook is obviously not going to be your between the tackles guy who's going to be busting things up and your physical back but I think he has a skill set that really has been underutilized at this point, which is to get him on the edge get him in free space let him use that speed and and be a dynamic game breaker. So I'm excited to see what they do with that to stay on the running back topic and touch on this briefly just because I kind of know what your thoughts on it know where you're headed with it. But what do you think the odds are of Zachary Evans being a dog comm national signing day?
Before I answer that, I do want to say we could probably spend a good 45 minute episode talking about James books under utilization. So
yeah, it's really been frustrating. I mean, not saying that he's a stud or anything like that. It's just it seems based off what we have seen of him in limited bytes, whether it be GTA games, or whether it be in regular season games, it just seems like there's a spark there that they could utilize or gameplan around. We haven't seen it. I thought it was gonna happen this year, but just just didn't happen for for whatever reason. So you know, it is what it is. Hopefully, hopefully, Tompkins got some some plans for Mr. Cook. I'd love to see it.
So on Zachary Evans, if I could give up Less than 0% chance I
This has been the strangest recruitments I mean, there have been some strange ones. I don't know what's going on with this. I mean, I love recruiting other than the season depart this part of the offseason is my favorite thing. And during the season, I love the recruiting, follow the visits, all that stuff. I'm all over social media like seeing the likes and stuff like that. I just I love recruiting. And this one though, is just like the ups and downs and the twists and turns. It's just, I don't know, it's like watching a soap opera. It really is. I just hope that wherever this kid lands, he lands in a good situation. And then whatever is going on that has influenced him to make the decisions he has made, whether they be good or bad, just back off and let the kid mature. Because it seems like it just reminds me of, you know, kids getting bad advice like leaving early from college to go to the NFL. And looking for a payday they end up undrafted and like in the arena league or you know, like Trenton Thompson who's tried to make an xfl roster right now and just it just stuff like that. It's just I don't know what's going on. I don't know the ins and outs but there had to be several other things that happened that we don't know about and we're never going to know for him for ga release enormous Li and this isn't a resolution that's going to happen on national signing day because from my understanding he can't sign another national letter of intent. I don't think we're going to know where he's gonna be playing until he enrolls and somewhere in his in summer camp somewhere and then the transfer portal he may not know that we may not know where he's going to be until he's on the field and then who knows what's gonna happen there's really just no telling what's gonna happen with this kid I just I really hope he's not wearing orange because rumors circulating that it could be for See I really don't see that because hate orange but I really hope that he just figures it out and he does what's best for him and not from the people that are influencing him because it seems really seems like he's getting some bad advice somewhere.
Yeah, I mean, just from a talent perspective he seems very gifted right i mean had a had a big game the all American game has had a good high school career but you just hope that it can match up that the mental piece of it with the physical piece of it and and become a stud whether that's with us or with somebody else that's what always Oh hooked up for all these kids that they go somewhere cheap all their dreams and reach their max potential and all those things just because you know, they obviously love it they've been playing it all their lives and a kid like him who's obviously been blessed with some superior physical abilities and you just hope he puts all that together and and shines man so I'm with you, I hope wherever he ends up whether it's in Athens or whether it's somewhere else I hope he B tears it up man he'll be puts it all together and gets after it from a Georgia perspective. The good part from the fans perspective is that it's not a must have. So if he's in Athens, great, I hope I hope our system Foster's him and gets everything that he can get out of his talent, hope it gets all of it and goes on the pros and has great career but if if the dogs don't get him, there's some great talent already there. I mean, I think everybody's jacked up to see Zeus right likes James Cook. I love Kenny McIntosh. Super excited to see what Kendall Milton is going to do. I mean, I think that's been very undersold his addition, I think he's going to be a good player. I think behind the scenes, he was kind of a Pied Piper for this class. So I'm excited to see what that group can do and what they can be especially with the different opportunities they're going to get, you know, monken system the running back room at Georgia has never really something that I worry about. So if he ends up being there, great if not a man op Toby tears it up somewhere else.
It always seems like the kid that commands early, it's always like okay, who's next? So it's like Milton thing right it for so long. It's like people seem to forget about it. But I mean, he was a five star recruit in his in his own right. It wasn't like he was a three star recruit out of the top 300 or whatever. I mean, he was a top 30 recruit in the country,
early enrollee I mean, that's the other part you love about him, obviously very loyal to the UGA West Coast kid but you know, loves athletes love CGA loves the program early enrollee I love all that stuff. I think I like all that stuff matters. I think it integrates into the culture of the program integrates into the possibilities for success, not just for the individual or for the team itself, because everybody's kind of bought in. So man, I'm excited to see what Milton does not close on like a somber note or anything. But since the last time we spoke, obviously, the news of Kobe Bryant's untimely passing came out, along with the other eight individuals on board, obviously tragic news and worst sports podcast. So we're going to talk about it briefly. I'll just submit. The whole thing is tragic. And it's less about Kobe Bryant and more about the whole event that nine folks aren't getting to go home to their family that people lost fathers brothers, daughters, sons, it's just it's just an awful thing, I think what struck me most about it, and I think it was probably the same for you, we both have kids. And I just think about it from the perspective of, he doesn't get to go home and be a father to his other three girls and his little girl doesn't ever get to go home and grow up with her sisters are with with her mom. And I mean, that part of it with with Kobe and Gigi just. And it's that way for all the families, you know, whether it be the altobelli family, or any of the families involved. It's just a tragic, tragic situation. And, you know, you just pray for those families and pray that they find some peace and some comfort, and that they're surrounded by strong networks just because I just I can't fathom having to deal with that, as a father or as a husband, or just as a family in general. So what are your thoughts? I know, I know, it kind of hits your heart like it did mine as well.
Yeah, I agree. The hardest thing. I mean, you know, I'm not a basketball fan. I've never really had been, but I mean, anyone under the planet knows who Kobe Bryant is. I mean, I was when he first came into the league, and he was drafted by Charlotte, I remember Charlotte trading him, and then him going to the Lakers. And remember despising those Laker teams, because, you know, they were the evil empire at that point, time, him being such a public figure, it's, you see the man he was and more importantly, you see the father he was and it's just being a dad, you know, I have four girls, it's just seeing all the videos pop up and seeing all the pictures of pop up of him and his daughters. It's just, it's just like, all over social media still. And this takes nothing away from the other families. And I'm not trying to take away from the other families. It's just because he's such a public figure and what always pops up. And it's like, I have to scroll past it really quick, because I want to tear up. Because I think about my girls and just, you know, I want to go home and hug them but I'm at work or I'm Oh my god, you know, I'm in my car, you know, I'm at stoplight or whatever it is, I want to start to get choked up now just thinking about it. So it's gut wrenching, I feel so terrible for everyone involved. And I pray for them. And I hope that they're able to find some peace going forward, because I can cannot imagine what they're going through. I just hope that they're able to find peace at some point.
I echo that i think that you know, we obviously pray for the families and and pray that they can find whatever whatever piece is out there for them. And in that, that they're just wrapped up in, in the love of the ones that are still here with them and can help them get through what what I mean, I just can't even fathom it. I can't I can't fathom how you process that loss or where you go with it. So our prayers are certainly with them and, and we hope they they come out of this on the other side as best as they possibly can. So we're going to close with that today, just because it's kind of been on both our hearts all week and we hope you come back and and join us next week. Thank you for being with us this week. Go ahead and like and subscribe to the to the podcast, go ahead and review it for us. do the best that you can. The more those that you do that the more people can see and come hang out with us bark with us a little bit. Follow us on social media, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, blog, the dogs that's a wg on blog and dogs. And come back and see us next week. We'll we'll probably do an episode on Super Bowl Sunday and talk about some things like mikolas possibilities for that game and and we'll keep it rolling. So go dog sick. Go dogs,