UGA Football Recruiting: From In-State to Nationwide

In past years, Georgia football has primarily remained within the Southeast in terms of recruiting. Kirby Smart has now begun to shift from a more local based recruiting team to a nationwide force. The 2019 class, and now the 2020 classes have expanded the horizons for Georgia football's recruiting. Today, we take a look at the difference in years past in comparison to the 2019 and 2020 class.

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In the 2017 recruiting class, Kirby Smart secured the #3 class in the nation by "building a wall" around the borders of Georgia. UGA had a total of seventeen in-state players of the twenty-five total signees. And on top of that, only four players out of the entire class were from outside of the Southeastern region. Two of those non-Southeastern recruits were five-star players, Isaiah Wilson, and D'Andre Swift

To see a break down of the 2017 class, click here.

Since the 2017 recruiting class, we've seen the Georgia Bulldogs sweep the East division two years in a row, snag an SEC Championship, appear in the Sugar Bowl, win a Rose Bowl, and take Alabama to the wire in a national championship. 

With Georgia becoming more and more of a national brand each year, it certainly becomes easier to reach out to recruits from across the country. 

The 2018 cycle consisted of an influx of in-state talent, and Kirby Smart was able to take advantage of it. Georgia gained commitments from four five star recruits from the state of Georgia, and seven total in-state recruits in the top-100. However, UGA lowered its' in-state numbers from seventeen in 2017, to fifteen in 2018.

In the 2019 class, we saw UGA take only eight, recruits from the state of Georgia. This was also one of the first times in the school's history where there were more out-of-state recruits than in-state recruits. 

Here is the break down for the 2019 class by state:

- (8) Georgia

- (5) Florida

- (3) Tennessee

- (2) Alabama

- (1) Louisiana

- (1) Michigan

- (1) Minnesota

- (1) Mississippi

- (1) Rhode Island

- (1) Texas

While there is plenty of talent in the state of Georgia, it certainly can't hurt to nab some of the top-rated players from all over the country. In fact, Georgia is currently on track to make one of their biggest recruiting splashes, nationally.

Out of the eleven commitments for the 2020 class so far, six of those are from Georgia.

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Georgia has two Floridian commitments in four-star DT, Jalen Carter, and four-star QB, Carson Beck. In addition, Georgia has two pledges from Texas four-star CB, Jalen Kimber and four-star OG, Akinola Ogunbiyi. Lastly, the Dawgs have a commitment from Washington D.C.'s five-star OLB, Mekhail Sherman.

Georgia is nowhere near complete in the 2020 cycle, but there are only a few targets left in-state remaining for UGA. That means Georgia will have to look outside of their borders to fill this class to capacity. We'll take a look at some of the top remaining out-of-state targets and where they're from.

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Justin Flowe, Inside Linebacker, Upland, California

Flowe is a playmaker at linebacker, and would easily fit in the Bulldogs' system. Ranked as the #1 ILB and #3 player in the country, Flowe is Georgia's top inside linebacker prospect for this cycle. There is some belief Georgia is currently the leader here, but there is still a lot of work left to do here for the five star from Cali. 

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Zachary Evans, Running Back, Houston Texas

Evans is a prototypical running back with a respectable frame and elite speed. As we stated last week, Evans is one of Georgia's top remaining running back targets for the 2020 cycle. A lot of hype came when Evans received a "crystal ball" prediction on 247sports from an Ohio State insider. However, his high school teammate, Damieon George, committed to Alabama recently, and the two are believed to be a package deal. It is not guaranteed that he will go to Alabama, and his recruitment should be considered "wide open" at the moment. Georgia still has a great chance to land his talents.

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Kelee Ringo, Corner Back, Scottsdale, Arizona

Ringo is considered to be the top corner prospect in the 2020 cycle. He stands at 6'2 and has drawn comparisons to the Jacksonville Jaguars' Jalen Ramsey. Good news for Georgia fans, Ringo has given plenty of reason to believe he will end up at Georgia. He's taken a lot of visits recently, which says a lot about his feelings towards Georgia, considering he has to make the trip from Arizona on his own dime. Georgia will be able to fund Ringo's trip if and when he decides to take his official visit. The two most recent "crystal ball" predictions have Ringo taking his talents to UGA, per 247sports.

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Darnell Washington, Tight End, Las Vegas, Nevada

Washington, rated as the #1 ATH in the country, is one of the most exciting players in the entire 2020 class because of his size. Standing at 6'7.5" and 248 lbs, Washington is set on playing tight end at the next level, but he could easily play defensive end if need be. 

Washington visited UGA back in March, and will likely make it down for an official visit soon. Washington added UGA to his top 8 list recently, but his recruitment still seems very hazy at the time being. However, Washington does have one "crystal ball" prediction to UGA, per 247sports.

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Kendall Milton, Running Back, Clovis, California

Like Zachary Evans, Milton is also one of the top remaining running back targets, and top overall targets left for Georgia in 2020. Milton has already taken an official visit to Ohio State and LSU, and he will take his official visit to UGA on June 14th. 

He was also in town for Georgia's annual G-Day game in April. His recruitment is down to four teams, and he will likely make a decision within the next few months. Georgia will have a great chance to get a commitment here.

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