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Nkemdiche Sets Announcment Date

Highly-touted defensive end Robert Nkemdiche from Grayson High School in Loganville, Ga., will announce his college decision on May 18.

“I’m ready to commit because I know where I want to go,” Nkemdiche told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I feel like I’ve seen all the places I needed to see and talked to all the coaches everywhere.

“I don’t feel any need to wait any later than the spring. I’m ready to get it over with and then I can focus on other things … my senior year of high school, my schoolwork, and helping Grayson try to win the state championship again.”

Nkemdiche told the AJC his top five schools are Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Ole Miss and Clemson. Nkemdiche gave his list of schools in no particular order (we listed them alphabetically), although Alabama has been widely considered the favorite to land Nkemdiche.

His most recent trip was to LSU over the weekend. Nkemdiche gave the visit a “10″ on a 1-10 grading scale.

“LSU felt like it was home,” he said. “They’ve got a great tradition of defensive linemen. I feel like I could do some good things there. I could see myself playing there.”

Nkemdiche could return to Alabama and Georgia for unofficial visits this spring. He had tentative plans to visit Mississippi State and Vanderbilt in the upcoming weeks but those trips appear unlikely, according to the AJC.

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Shaq Wiggins Chooses Georgia

Cornerback Shaq Wiggins from Sandy Creek High School in Tyrone, Ga., has committed to Georgia.

It felt right,” Wiggins told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It’s the place for me.”

Tennessee, Ole Miss, Michigan, Ohio State and others had offered scholarships to Wiggins.

Wiggins is a candidate to be ranked the top cornerback in the state of Georgia, according to the AJC.

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Harvey-Clemons Is Done Talking

Linebacker Josh Harvey-Clemons won’t have anymore contact with the schools he’s considering before he announces his decision on Wednesday.

Harvey-Clemons, who plans to announce his choice at 9:05 eastern time on Wednesday morning, is considering Florida, Georgia, Florida State and Miami.

Miami is considered a “co-leader” with the other three schools but the Hurricanes might be fighting an uphill battle, according to Harvey-Clemons’ grandfather, Woodrow Clemons.

And it will be tough to catch up. Clemons said his grandson won’t have any contact with the schools before he announces his decision.

“The questions have been answered,” Clemons told the AJC. “We have to talk, and then Josh has just got to utter the words out of his mouth on Wednesday morning.”

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Nick Saban Promises To ‘Stand By His Word’ (This Time)

Running back Justin Taylor from North Atlanta High School is still trying to decide where he will spend the fall of 2012.

The Alabama commit received a visit on Tuesday from coach Nick Saban, who recently told Taylor he no longer had a scholarship available for 2012. Instead, Saban has asked Taylor to wait to enroll in school next January.

Taylor is undecided, although he remains committed to Alabama. His options include attending a junior college this fall as a part-time student or enrolling in a prep school to play football this fall. But Taylor has qualified academically so attending a prep school isn’t necessary.

There’s a good chance Taylor accepts Saban’s offer to wait to join Alabama in 2013. If that happens, Saban better have a scholarship ready, according to Stanley Pritchett, Taylor’s coach and legal guardian.

“Coach Saban made it clear he is going to stand by his word,” Pritchett told the AJC. “As Justin’s guardian, I can only go by a man’s word. I’m going to hold Coach Saban to those words. There’s going to be a problem if he doesn’t stick by his word (and sign Taylor in 2013).”

I’ve made my thoughts clear on this situation. Hopefully things work out well for Taylor no matter what decision he makes for his future.

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Athlete Moody Commits To Vanderbilt

Athlete Chris Moody from Henry County High School in McDonough, Ga., has committed to Vanderbilt.

Moody committed to the Commodores during an official visit this weekend.

“I did commit,” Moody told ESPN.com. “I did it because I wanted to be a part of something special. Everybody there gives me the family feeling. Coach (James) Franklin and his staff are great. I feel as if the talent there can help us be great for the future. You also hope this helps Georgia take over Nashville.”

Vanderbilt is hoping to hold on to another important Georgia prospect, defensive end Josh Dawson from Tucker (Ga.) High School.

Dawson, who’s been committed to Vanderbilt since June, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution it’s “50-50″ whether he will sign with Vanderbilt or Georgia.

“I’m still committed to Vanderbilt but … it’s just a tight race between Vanderbilt and Georgia right now,” Dawson told the AJC. “I’d say they are both on top. I’m just going to have to weigh my options out. I’m going to make my final decision on where I’m going to sign on Feb. 1.”

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Vandy Commit Dawson Visits Georgia

Vanderbilt defensive end commit Josh Dawson from Tucker (Ga.) High School was at Georgia this weekend for an official visit.

Dawson would be more suited to play outside linebacker in Georgia’s 3-4 defensive scheme. That means Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham would coach Dawson if he were to choose the Bulldogs.

“I didn’t really to talk to (Grantham) that much until the last few weeks,” Dawson told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Now we talk a lot. He’s a pretty cool guy. He’s very passionate with the way he coaches. It seems to bring out the best in his players. I don’t have any problems with it. I’m just waiting to see which way I go with (my recruiting).”

So is Vanderbilt in danger of losing Dawson, who’s considered the nation’s 20th-best weakside defensive end by Rivals.com?

“I’m still committed to Vanderbilt,” Dawson told the AJC. “They’ve shown me a lot of love for a long time, and that’s why I committed there. Vanderbilt is ahead and … I don’t know … what else to say. I’m leaving everything out on the table for now. I will take my visit to Vanderbilt next weekend and see how things go.”

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Mike Davis Defends Himself In ‘Jersey-Gate’

It was kind of an odd story on Rivals.com on Monday.

The story by Tom Bergeron accused several players from the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas, of being upset about the jersey numbers they had received.

One player mentioned is running back Mike Davis from Stone Mountain, Ga. Bergeron wrote:

“Mike Davis of Stone Mountain (Ga.) Stephenson made such a fuss about his assigned No. 16 that he was given a new number (14), making him the only player without his name on his jersey. But that didn’t help – neither was the No. 28 he wanted.”

Davis wasn’t quoted in the story and he understandably wasn’t happy about it.

Davis told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution he was never interviewed for the Rivals story and wasn’t upset about the number (16) he was given by bowl officials.

Davis said he asked a bowl official if he could have No. 28 because it wasn’t assigned to another player on the roster.

“I didn’t fuss about it,” Davis told the AJC. “I just asked him. I don’t know where they got where I was fussing about it. The reporter never talked to me about it. Go read the story – I’m not even quoted in it. It’s just not true.”

Davis said it’s also untrue that his jersey number will be a factor in his college decision. He told the AJC he hasn’t spoken to any college coach about a preferred jersey number.

“It wouldn’t be important at all,” Davis said. “The only thing I’m looking at is playing time and the place where I feel at home. Picking a college number isn’t something that’s serious to me.”

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Two Prospects Decommit From Tennessee

Tennessee lost two commitments for the class of 2012 during the weekend.

One prospect, wide receiver Keithon Redding from Decatur, Ga., told MrSEC he decommitted from UT because of recent coaching changes.

Wide receivers coach Charlie Baggett left the program last month. UT hired Jay Graham to coach running backs and moved Darin Hinshaw from quarterbacks coach to receivers coach.

Redding, who told MrSEC he will consider Kentucky, Ole Miss and Mississippi State, told ESPN.com that he saw a “whole lot of issues” at UT and factored that in to his decision to look elsewhere.

Redding said the decision to decommit was completely his choice.

That wasn’t necessarily the case for Austell, Ga., linebacker Khalid Henderson, who told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution he was encouraged by UT coach Derek Dooley to look elsewhere.

“Coach Dooley said there is a ‘possibility’ you might not be coming to Tennessee,” Henderson said, via the AJC. “He said you have two options: ‘You can stay committed to us, wait it out and see what other players do. Or you can de-commit and try to get some attention from other schools but that doesn’t mean you can’t come to Tennessee’ or whatever. He was very iffy about everything. He wouldn’t say anything concrete. He kept on using that word ‘possibility.’”

Henderson decided it was in his best interest to decommit from UT. And he didn’t appear to be happy about it.

“I thought it was a bunch of crap,” Henderson told the AJC. “I guess if Tennessee is out there looking for other linebackers, then I can do find another place to go. Tennessee is where I wanted to go, and that’s where I’ve been loyal to ever since June. But it is what it is.”

UT will now have to deal with the loss of defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox and linebackers coach Peter Sirmon. The two coaches left on Monday to take the same positions at Washington.

The losses of Henderson and Redding leave UT with 20 commitments for the class of 2012.

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UGA And Richt Working On Extension

Georgia AD Greg McGarity has come out, opened up, and made it clear that the Mark Richt to Texas A&M talk is just that — talk.  McGarity told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today:

 

“I had a conversation with Mark.  He wants to be our coach.  We want him to be our coach.”

 

Asked about the A&M rumors, McGarity said: “You don’t waste your time on (rumors) that have no legs.  We just know Mark is going to be our ball coach.”

McGarity told the AJC he has zero doubts about Richt’s return next season.

And in College Station, Kevin Sumlin just got a step closer to the Aggies’ head coaching job.

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Ray Buchanan Jr. Commits To Arkansas

Arkansas received a commitment from defensive back Ray Buchanan Jr. on Saturday.

The son of the former NFL pro bowler chose the Razorbacks over Ole Miss. Arkansas was the first school to offer Buchanan Jr.

“I talked to a lot of former and current players, and they all said they really loved it at Arkansas,” Buchanan told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It’s an exciting atmosphere for college football, and a great place to get a degree.”

Buchanan told the AJC he plans to earn a degree in Criminal Justice or Engineering.

Arkansas has 17 commitments for the class of 2012.

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