Coronavirus:

What You Need To Know

On Air Now

Listen Now

Weather

cloudy-day
69°
Mostly Cloudy
H 76° L 66°
  • cloudy-day
    69°
    Current Conditions
    Mostly Cloudy. H 76° L 66°
  • cloudy-day
    76°
    Today
    Mostly Cloudy. H 76° L 66°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
    81°
    Tomorrow
    Chance of T-storms. H 81° L 65°
Listen
Pause
Error

News on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Listen
Pause
Error

Traffic on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Listen
Pause
Error

Weather on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

UGA Sports

    Want to attack every day with the latest UGA football recruiting info? That's what the Intel brings. This entry gives a thorough breakdown of everything 4-star OLB Chaz Chambliss brings to the table as the latest commit to the 2021 class. Chaz Chambliss usually starts every day with a big mug. We are not talking about selfies for his Instagram page here. 'When I was little my Pappaw used to drink black coffee when I was hunting with him,' Chambliss said. 'He'd always tell me to kill a big buck you'd have to drink the coffee. The one time I actually drank the coffee, I killed one. So ever since then, I just drink a cup of black coffee every morning.' He will go outside the Carrollton football facility and drink his coffee. Straight black. The newest Georgia Bulldog commit will do that early Friday morning. Then on Saturdays and Sundays. That's enough caffeine intake there. He doesn't want to dehydrate during the season. 'It is unbelievable,' Carrollton defensive coordinator Brian Simmons said. 'It is like he is an old man already.' That's part of his ritual before he makes sure he gets in his daily workouts and strives academically to maintain his 3.9 grade-point average at Carrolton High School. Chambliss works out three hours every day until noon during the quarantine. Remember the hit 1993 movie 'The Program' starring the stunning Halle Berry and Omar Epps? That movie about a fictitious college team was even able to hand Georgia Tech an 'L' on the big screen. There's a character named Phillip Latimer in that movie. Latimer does just about everything wrong in that movie as far as an exemplary student-athlete goes. Yet he was a hulking brute. When that movie ends, the staff of Eastern State University sets out to find the next Latimer on the recruiting trail. They were looking for a Chaz Chambliss. Yet the strongest thing this football and classroom 'nerd' takes in would be that stout cup of black coffee. Carrollton High head coach Sean Calhoun and defensive coordinator Brian Simmons feel that Chambliss plays like Latimer but then does everything the right on and off the field. If you haven't seen 'The Program' then the necessary imagery will be a guy who will deliver a hit so forceful it shoots snot bubbles out of the ballcarrier's nose. They will flow like the Gatorade on a South Georgia practice field. RELATED: Chaz Chambliss commits to Georgia football The Chaz Chambliss stories to know at the next tailgate This story is one of many involving Chambliss. We will chronicle two of those in tonight's blog. Well, maybe even three. Just for a few laughs. 'During pregame I always talk to the other coaching staffs and I'm not going to mention who it was here,' Simmons said. 'We're talking about this kid or that kid and the head coach of that school says to me Well, we haven't had a great week of practice' right on the field. Simmons then asked why. The head coach of the team Carrollton was about to face said his guys were scared. 'Scared of what?' Simmons replied. 'They have got a bad case of the Chaz Chambliss,' that coach went on to say. 'They are scared of your No. 32 man.' Simmons countered that he was scared of Chambliss, too. The physical attributes and the maturity of his body catch the most eyes here. Most DawgNation readers are quick, and on point, to label him as just a big mean country boy. Chambliss will skin a buck and run a trout line, but he will also track turkeys and squirrel. Those things matter more here than social media followers or chasing the prettiest girl he can find. His coaches describe him as a thinking man's football player. 'He can really talk to us out on the field and tell us what the other team is doing from film study,' Simmons said. 'Then once he decides it is time for no more talking and it is time to act, then he is probably the most physical and aggressive kid I've ever been around.' 'It is literally when I hit you, I want to destroy your soul. You can tell by almost any highlight that you watch, that his physicality is almost unmatched.' His defensive coordinator will reel him in on practice days. 'We will do that 100 percent because everything he does is 100 percent,' Simmons said. 'I tell him sometimes We need these scout guys. You can't kill them' and I tell Chaz to slow down. I tell him it is okay to tag them off every once in a while.' 'I do call him Latimer' sometimes.' Chambliss will even paint his face with eye black on game days. All the way down to the cheek. Did you know the weekly DawgNation.com 'Before the Hedges' program is now available as an Apple podcast? Click to check it out and download. Chaz Chambliss file: A speed read on the newest UGA commit Chambliss looked like a high school junior or senior with big SEC offers when he arrived at Carrollton. He was an instant starter in the summer before his freshman season. Let's rip off several quick things of note: His actual name is Chaz. No joke. Calhoun will call him 'Charles' about half of the time, but he's not sure if that iswell-received by his 4-star linebacker. He has one of the five highest GPAs on his team across all grade levels. The risingsenioris also one of the five strongest pound-for-pound Trojans on the team, too. Chambliss takes honors and AP classes at Carrollton. His coaches call him a 'nerd' on the field and in the hallways. He is very low-key. So much that his coaches were surprised he wanted to do a commitment video. That said, it made perfect sense that he didn't say a single word in that clip. 'That was exactly him,' Calhoun said. 'Very well done.' He will be a two-time team captain this fall. That is voted on by the players on the team. The Carrollton staff verified he is still just 17 years old. He will not turn 18 until October. He does plan to enroll early at UGA in January of 2021. This commitment should be seen as solid as his 253 career tackles and 69 stops for losses in three varsity seasons.Calhoun said that loyalty matters to Chambliss. The new Bulldog pledge told DawgNation that he will not visit any other schools as a Georgia commit. His coaches both called him 'an old soul' in their program. Chambliss had some good lifts in the weight room with a 345-pound bench, a 485-pound squat and a 325-pound power clean. Those were in January and he's made gains since then. He's now at 525 on the squat and 365 on the bench. He said he's added another 10 pounds to that power clean. He will be the second Carrollton Trojan in program history to enroll early as a mid-year graduate. His impressive career stat line will also include 38.5 career sacks and eight forced fumbles. He stacked up 85 tackles and 16.5 sacks last year as a junior. Chambliss comes from a military background. His father served in the Army for 25 years. Simmonsapproximated that 65 percent of the reps forChambliss were as a stand-up OLB or a stack OLB. He's had hishand on the ground atdefensive end 20 percent of the time and theremaining 15 percent of his snaps have been at ILB. 'I remember the first day he walked into the football facility as an upcoming ninth-grader,' Simmons said. 'We started talking to him and we asked him what grade he was in and he said eighth grade. I said There is no way' because he looked like a senior in high school. Heck he looked like a college kid then.' The 6-foot-3, 240-pounder has done nothing but better himself on and off the field since then. 'When you see him initially at such a young age, he just strikes you as a physical specimen,' Calhoun said. 'But then once you get to talk to him it just takes it to a whole new level. Just how great of a kid he is.' What does he look like right now? 'I think he looks like what an NFL guy will look like,' Simmons said. 'The guy has been working out three hours every day over quarantine. He built his own home gym. He's a handyman. He loves the grind. Loves to work out. Loves football. Literally that is all he has been doing over the quarantine period.' 'He even looks better than he did when he was in school. It was unbelievable.' Here is another look at his junior highlight film. That's the full reel, but arguably the best game of his career came against Rome. Check it out below. There are 3:38 of highlights just from that single game against one of the state's most well-respected programs. The Wolves held a three-game win streak on Carrollton. That's when Chambliss put the burden of ending that skid on his big shoulders. He played like he had three cups of Expresso that morning. Check that sequence where he reads the screen. Rome had it set up but Chambliss read the guard and wipes out the fullback to tackle the runner for a two-yard loss. He later dips underneath a block on a reverse that Rome had set up, too.It would have been a touchdown. Chambliss turned that into a loss of eight yards. There are clips after clips from that game. He's even beating a Division I-A offensive tackle for a sack in that game coming off the edge with his hand in the dirt. It was a Chambliss showcase game. The camera angles are just not close enough to verify the snot bubbles. Where will Chaz Chambliss play at Georgia? The evaluation here is a cross between a Malik Herring and a Nate McBride and maybe even a D'Andre Walker. Maybe toss in a David Pollack 2001 model motor under the hood, too. The projection here is a SAM linebacker on Saturdays in the SEC. 'We know how hard he works,' Calhoun said. 'We know how hard he studies. We know how hard he works at something he doesn't excel at. If he doesn't, he's going to work at it so he gets good at it. I think he is going to be able to play at whatever position Georgia puts him at. If it is a SAM, he's going to be really good at doing exactly whatever they need him to do. If there's anything he's not done before or they want him to do that he is not excellent at, there will not be anybody that will outwork him to get better at that.' Can he be a strong-side DE at Georgia? Don't let too many impressions get in the way. He's basically the same size Malik Herring was when that talented SDE signed with UGA in the 2017 class. There's no more than one inch and maybe 10 pounds of deviation from those two bodies. It remains to be seen if Chambliss can do backflips like Herring. But he can serve as an intimidator. 'He's done a lot of stuff for us where he's had his hand in the dirt,' Simmons said. 'He'sbeen a stand-up end. He's been a stack backer. He's been a middle backer. He's been a true outside 3-4 backer. Everything that he does, he's been one of the most driven and hard-working individuals I've ever been around.' 'If they need him to be an off-the-line backer or and on-the-line backer or a hand in the dirt guy, he will probably be the best one they have. Because he does such a great job getting himself ready mentally and physically as much as I've ever seen anybody. Whatever you ask Chaz Chambliss to do, he's going to be unbelievable at it. That's for sure.' 'Whether that is affecting the quarterback or stopping the run or doing whatever you need him to do, he's just going to be fantastic at it.' There's a bias here for both men. They've challenged Chambliss for three years now and have seen the results. They've seen this movie so many times they can quote all the lines. Chaz Chambliss: The funniest story so far Calhoun and Simmons both laugh at this one. It involves a Sadie Hawkins dance. Those still happen in his part of Georgia.That's the old school staple where the girls have to ask out the guys to the dance. We'll jump to the part where a young lady asks Chambliss if he is going to go to the Sadie Hawkins dance. 'What are you talking about?' Chambliss replied. 'Yeah, are you going to the Sadie Hawkins dance,' she said. 'I don't know who Sadie Hawkins is and she didn't invite me to her party so I am not going,' Chambliss said. Chambliss is seen by his two coaches as an old man in a 17-year-old defined frame. A Sadie Hawkins dance would speak to his era. He's the reverse 'Big' where the old man wishes to be young man. 'You would think so,' Simmons said. 'But he has no time for dances. Or anything. If it is not hunting or fishing or football, then he's not too interested.' 'He had a girlfriend for a little bit this fall. He might still have one. I'm not sure.' When coaches don't know if their star linebacker has a girlfriend, it usually means his priorities are aligned. 'It is not going to stop him from doing workouts,' Calhoun said. 'He's going to still get his workouts in and get better every day, too. That's the way it is going to work with him.' The love interest here might be the pages of the defensive play sheets that involve the blitz and pinch calls. 'The other story I can think of is he is in his hunting cabin in Mississippi,' Simmons said. 'They have a hunting cabin in the woods. So he will pack dumbbells on any trips that he goes too. He brings them. A suitcase of dumbbells. So he puts all the dumbbells in a big plastic barrel and he sits down on a homemade bench that he made when he was over there.' 'He's doing bench press with those packed dumbbells. He's getting his lifts with all of his homemade equipment basically.He's not going to miss a workout. I promise you.' What is Georgia getting in Chaz Chambliss? Calhoun shared his answer first to the query in that big bold type noted above. 'Somebody that is going to make their program instantly better the day he steps on campus,' Calhoun said. 'I say this to a lot of people about Chaz. Chaz is not ranked as a 5-star when you look at the rankings. He's ranked as a 4-star. But I look at it overall as a person because I am with him every day.' 'He's a 5-star and there ain't no doubt about it.Because of how he is going to make them better in the locker room and in the weight room and on the field. He'll be a 5-star in the hallways going to class. He will be a 5-star alumnus when he graduates and leaves their campus. That's everything he is bringing and he is also going to do everything he can to make the people around him better on and off the field.' 'He's going to do nothing but win. That dude is a winner. He's going to work to be a winner and he's going to win because that's who he is. It is awesome to see a kid take his academics even more seriously than his football and he is an unbelievable football player.' Simmons brought up ESPN's 'The Last Dance' with his reply to that topic. 'We've all seen that, right?' Simmons said. 'We've all seen how Michael Jordan is so internally motivated. That is a perfect example of Chaz Chambliss. You never have to get him up. You never have to get him ready for practice. You never have to get on to him about his grades. You don't have to get on to him about not doing something the right way.' DAWGNATION RECRUITING (the recent reads on DawgNation.com) BREAKING: Chaz Chambliss commits to Georgia football Taking a deep dive at how well Georgia has been recruiting Metro Atlanta of late Elite 2022 defensive athlete Daniel Martin already has a 'family' feel at UGA HEDGES: The rival national programs between UGA and another No. 1 class Brock Bowers: Nation's No. 3 TE knows what he needs to do before his college decision De'Jahn Warren: The 'nugget' for the nation's No. 1 JUCO prospect with UGA Elite cornerback Marquise Groves-Killebrew is a 'No. 1 priority' for 2022 Decrypting that recent tweet from 5-star LB Smael Mondon Jr. Prince Kollie: The ILB target who had 1,085 yards as a receiver in 2019 Lovasea Carroll: DawgNation goes one-on-one with the 2021 RB commit Dylan Fairchild: Elite O-line target includes UGA among his top six schools What exactly are these virtual recruiting visits like right now? The post Who is Chaz Chambliss? Carrollton's staff shares the juice about the new UGA commit appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Georgia football is the No. 1 topic every day on DawgNation Daily the daily podcast for Georgia Bulldogs fans. Catch up on everything happening with UGA athletics with host Brandon Adams and the DawgNation experts as they break down the latest Georgia football recruiting news and discuss coach Kirby Smart's quest to return the Bulldogs to the top of the SEC. On episode No. 1,202 (May 26, 2020) of the podcast, Georgia fans can hear a discussion about the ways in which Kirby Smart has seemingly grown in his four years as UGA coach. Georgia football podcast: Kirby Smart has come a long way in four years at UGA Beginning of the show: When Kirby Smart began his career as Georgia coach in 2016 about the only thing the average fan knew about him was that he had been an assistant with Nick Saban at Alabama. In fact, in the early stages of Smart's time at UGA it was difficult to mention Smart without also mentioning Saban. As Smart readies himself to begin his fifth year on the job, he's still seeking his first win over his old boss, but there's no doubt Smart has become his own man and escaped Saban's shadow. I'll explain why that's true on today's show and discuss the reasons why UGA fans might occasionally be guilty of taking Smart's accomplishments for granted. 10-minute mark: I celebrate UGA and the SEC's announcement that players can return to campus starting June 8. 15-minute mark: DawgNation analyst and former UGA All-American Jon Stinchcomb joins the show. Some of the topics covered include How a slimmed-down version of Jamaree Salyer potentially benefits UGA's offensive line Reaction to UGA's return to football on June 8 And thoughts on Smart's career so far 30-minute mark: I take a look at some other notable names on CBS Sports' list of top coaches. 35-minute mark: I have some fun with some recent photos shared on social media of UGA players enjoying their offseason workouts. End of show: I share the Gator Hater Updater. DawgNation Daily Episode 1202: Kirby Smart's come a long way in four years at UGA The post Georgia football podcast: Kirby Smart has come a long way in four years at UGA appeared first on DawgNation.
  • The Georgia Bulldogs landed their first commitment in over a month on Tuesday, as outside linebacker prospect Chaz Chambliss announced that he would be attending the University of Georgia. Chambliss is rated as the No. 255 overall prospect in the 2021 recruiting class. He projects as a SAM outside linebacker in Georgia's defense and comes from Carrollton, Ga. Chambliss announced his commitment in a video posted to his social media pages. @KirbySmartUGA @CoachDanLanning @Dawgs247 @ChadSimmons_ @Mansell247 @CoachSimmonsFB @CoachHoon @RecruitGeorgia @jeffsentell @Carrollton_High pic.twitter.com/SuD7ifAGmo Chaz Chambliss (@ChazChambliss) May 26, 2020 Chambliss' announcement was met almost immediately with a Go Dawgs! tweet from Kirby Smart, his go-to phrase to signal a new commitment. GO DAWGS!! Coach Kirby Smart (@KirbySmartUGA) May 26, 2020 Smart wasn't the only Georgia staffer to join in on the celebration of the news. Related: What Georgia is getting in new commit Chaz Chambliss #CommitToTheG #GoDawgs pic.twitter.com/dKer8XCuYQ Coach Rod Ojong (@CoachOjong) May 26, 2020 Let's go!! #CommitToTheG #GoDawgs pic.twitter.com/wcvayswTwP Charlton Warren (@CoachCwarren) May 26, 2020 With Chambliss now in the class, the Bulldogs have eight commitments in the 2021 cycle, with six of them coming from the state of Georgia. Chambliss is the fifth defensive prospect to join what should a defense-heavy class, given Georgia's need at linebacker and in the secondary. The two leaders for Georgia's 2021 recruiting class, 5-star quarterback Brock Vandagriff and 4-star safety David Daniel, both took the time to formally welcome Chambliss to the class as well. Vandagriff seemed to hint that the two would be roommates when attending Georgia. ROOMMATE!! Yessir brother! Welcome to the brotherhood. #GODAWGS https://t.co/wEjfh6iiX3 brock (@BrockVandagriff) May 26, 2020 Yessir congratulations @ChazChambliss welcome to the fam #GoDawgs https://t.co/BYlBeajSas David Daniel (@David_X_Dope) May 26, 2020 Those who follow the online chatter had known that Chambliss had been a target for Georgia as he received one of the apex predator graphics that a number of top recruits had gotten in recent weeks. Some of those other prospects to receive the edit include Amarius Mims, Smael Mondon, Dallas Turner, Brock Bowers, Xavian Sorey. Brock -> Brock for 6!! I could get used to that @brockbowers17 pic.twitter.com/9oe0OxAiJT brock (@BrockVandagriff) May 14, 2020 That #FloridaPipeline 75 to Athens @UnoErra @Sorey_Jr come up and with ya boy #GoDawgs pic.twitter.com/VTdXlxI3RJ David Daniel (@David_X_Dope) May 15, 2020 With Chambliss now in the class, Georgia has the No. 16 recruiting class in the 2021 cycle. It should be worth noting though that some of the teams ahead of the Bulldogs in the 247Sports Composite rankings have a much higher number of commitments, such as Florida and Tennessee.Only Clemson and Ohio State have a higher ranked average recruit, as the Bulldogs have a 94.05 rating per commit And as is usually the case, Georgia fans were very excited to welcome Chambliss to the class after his decision was posted. MOOD #GoDawgs #CommitToTheG pic.twitter.com/axCT4C21hj UGA Supporters (@Support_UGA) May 26, 2020 Welcome to the family!! Go DAWGS!!! pic.twitter.com/cETYqKuBnb GO DAWGS!!!! (@UGAPlowboy) May 26, 2020 pic.twitter.com/9bpgcMmD8x Richard Thom (@HBTD1980) May 26, 2020 Andddd so it begins pic.twitter.com/KrL4yavIwa Aviation Ax (@DawgsAx) May 26, 2020 Since the NCAA instituted a dead period, preventing prospects and coaches from visiting, the Bulldogs have landed five commitments. The Bulldogs have signed a top-three recruiting class in each of the past four cycles, being the only team to do so. Georgia football 2021 recruiting commitments Brock Vandagriff, 5-star quarterback from Bogart, Ga.: No. 12 player in 247Sports Composite rankings, No. 30 player in 247Sports rankings,No. 5 in Rivals, No. 35 in ESPN, No. 2 ranked dual-threat quarterback, No. 2 ranked player from Georgia. DawgNation story on Brock Vandagriff: Why the addition of 5-star QB Brock Vandagriff could be a great sign for in-state recruiting Micah Morris, 4-star offensive tackle from Kingsland, Ga: No. 61 player in 247Sports Composite rankings, No. 32 player in 247Sports rankings, No. 41 in Rivals, No. 93 in ESPN, No. 9 offensive tackle, No. 7 player from Georgia. DawgNation story on Micah Morris:Micah Morris: Why the future criminal justice major is more than just a big get for Matt Luke David Daniel, 4-star defensive back from Woodstock, Ga.: No. 78 player in 247Sports Composite rankings, No. 126 player in 247Sports rankings, No. 96 in Rivals, No. 54 in ESPN, No. 4 ranked athlete, No. 8 ranked player from Georgia. DawgNation story on David Daniel:David Daniel: Elite DB trainer and former Bulldog Glenn Ford has an NFL parallel in mind Lovasea' Carroll, 4-star running back from Warrenton, Ga. (plays for IMG Academy): No. 118 player in 247Sports Composite rankings, No. 106 player in 247Sports rankings, No. 140 player in Rivals, No. 180 in ESPN, No. 7 ranked running back. DawgNation story on Lovasea Carroll: Why the 4.4 back sped up his timeline to choose UGA Jonathan Jefferson4-star defensive end from Douglasville, Ga.: No. 145 player in 247Sports Composite rankings, No. 176 player in 247Sports rankings, No. 177 in Rivals, No. 152 in ESPN, No. 14 ranked strongside defensive end, No. 14 player from Georgia. DawgNation story on Jonathan Jefferson: Jonathan Jefferson: 5 things to know about this week's 2021 Georgia commit Elijah Jeudy, 4-star weakside defensive end from Philadelphia, No. 171 player in 247Sports Composite rankings, No. 200 player in 247Sports rankings, No. 204 in Rivals, No. 176 in ESPN, No. 10 weakside defensive end. DawgNation story on Elijah Jeudy: The 5 things you haven't read yet about the newest Georgia commit Chaz Chambliss, 4-star outside linebacker from Carrolton, Ga: No. 255 player in 247Sports Composite rankings, Unranked in 247Sports rankings, No. 185 in Rivals, No. 222 in ESPN, No. 18 ranked outside linebacker, No. 24 player from Georgia. Marlin Dean, 3-star defensive tackle from Elberton, Ga.: No. 449 player in 247Sports Composite rankings, No. 27 DT in 247Sports rankings, No. 33 SDE in Rivals, Unranked via ESPN, No. 45 ranked player from Georgia. DawgNation story on Marlin Dean: Marlin Dean: It turns out the night UGA fell to Florida in hoops wasn't a total loss More Georgia football stories from around DawgNation Taking a deep dive at how well Georgia has been recruiting Metro Atlanta of late Elite 2022 defensive athlete Daniel Martin already has a 'family' feel at UGA HEDGES: The rival national programs between UGA and another No. 1 class Brock Bowers: Nation's No. 3 TE knows what he needs to do before his college decision De'Jahn Warren: The 'nugget' for the nation's No. 1 JUCO prospect with UGA Elite cornerback Marquise Groves-Killebrew is a 'No. 1 priority' for 2022 Decrypting that recent tweet from 5-star LB Smael Mondon Jr. Prince Kollie: The ILB target who had 1,085 yards as a receiver in 2019 Lovasea Carroll: DawgNation goes one-on-one with the 2021 RB commit The post What social media is saying about newest Georgia football commit Chaz Chambliss appeared first on DawgNation.
  • The lull in the recruiting cycle for Georgia's 2021 recruiting class is no more. The board for Georgia in the 2021 class is now up to eight after the commitment of in-state OLB Chaz Chambliss to the class on Tuesday morning. Chambliss, who ranks as the nation's No. 18 OLB and No. 255 overall prospect on the 247Sports Composite, shared his decision to commit to Georgia in a commitment video release from his Twitter account. @KirbySmartUGA @CoachDanLanning @Dawgs247 @ChadSimmons_ @Mansell247 @CoachSimmonsFB @CoachHoon @RecruitGeorgia @jeffsentell @Carrollton_High pic.twitter.com/SuD7ifAGmo Chaz Chambliss (@ChazChambliss) May 26, 2020 Chambliss is now the second OLB prospect to join the 2021 Georgia class. The 6-foot-3, 245-pound thumper is now the program's seventh in-state recruit in the 2021 class. Pennsylvania OLB Elijah Jeudy is the lone exception. The post BREAKING: 4-star OLB Chaz Chambliss has made his college decision appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia pitcher Emerson Hancock says he has yet to decide if he'll make himself eligible for the upcoming Major League Baseball Draft. Hancock, a 6-foot-4, 213-pound right-hander from Cairo, Ga., has been projected as a top-five pick. Baseball America projected him as the No. 4 pick. 'At the end of the day you take it one day at a time, I want to take things slow,' Hancock said on a Zoom conference call with reporters on Tuesday. The Major League Baseball Draft has been widely reported as taking place on June 10-11. The first round is expected to start at 7 p.m. on June 10 and be televised by the MLB Network. 'The great thing about the Major League Baseball Draft is you can see how things play out, you don't have to declare,' Hancock said. 'There's a lot of uncertainty about where people might go and how the draft might play out. 'I don't really know what's going to happen. But whatever does happen, I'll make the best of it, and I'll make the best decision for me and my family.' Hancock, who was 2-0 with a 2.75 ERA when the season was suspended in March, said even if the season was still underway he wouldn't necessarily have a decision to announce at this point. 'At this point in our season, the only thing I'd be focusing on is pitching in Hoover (at the SEC Baseball Tournament) and getting focused on the regionals,' Hancock said. 'We had a really good group of guys. I knew in my heart this was going to be the year to break through the regionals,' Hancock said. 'We were primed to play our best baseball in May and June. We certainly had fun in the 18 games we played.' The Bulldogs were off to a 14-4 start this when the season was postponed on March 12 before ultimately being canceled on account of the COVID-19 pandemic. Georgia was ranked No. 2 in the nation by USA Today at the time. It was the program's highest ranking since the 2008 team was No. 2 after advancing to the College World Series Finals. Hancock, one of the three team captains, was a Baseball America preseason All-America and on the USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award watch list. It didn't take long for Hancock to show his form, as he pitched seven shutout innings with eight strikeouts in a 9-0 win over Santa Clara on Feb. 21. In his final start before the season was suspended, Hancock matched his career high with 12 strikeouts and no walks in 7.1 innings in a combined shutout win over UMass. 'A lot of people have their opinions on me,' Hancock said. 'I love to compete, I love to win, and I love to work hard.' Hancock was just as impressive off the field while attending Georgia. Hanckock was named to the 2020 Southeastern Conference Community Service Team on Monday, an honor highlighting is community work. A member of the UGA Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, Hancock also took part in the annual Grady County HELP Agency, doing volunteer work to assist in providing necessities and toys to more than 500 families. The post Georgia pitcher Emerson Hancock undecided on 2020 MLB Draft appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Welcome to Good Day, UGA , your one-stop shop for Georgia footballnews and takes. Check us out every weekday morning for everything you need to know about Georgia football, recruiting, basketball and more. A deeper dive into Georgia football recruiting efforts in the metro Atlanta area Since Kirby Smart took over as Georgia's head coach in December of 2015 and including the 2021 class, the state of Georgia has produced 202 blue-chip recruits, which are defined as 4 or 5-star prospects using the 247Sports Composite database. Of those recruits, 118 58 percent of them have come from nine counties that make up the metro Atlanta area, defined as the counties of Fulton, Gwinnett, Cobb, DeKalb, Clayton, Coweta, Douglas, Fayette and Henry per the Georgia State of Tourism website. On average the metro Atlanta area produces more blue-chip recruits than the likes of Alabama, Louisiana and Ohio. Alvin Kamara, Derrick Brown and the Atlanta Falcons' 2020 first-round pick AJ Terrell all came from the area. It is one of the best recruiting areas in the country from both a high-end and volume standpoint. But in recent seasons Georgia is relying less and less on the Atlanta area to add to its recruiting haul, even as it continues to sign elite recruiting classes. In the 2019 and 2020 cycles, Georgia signed just five prospects from the area and just one of the 10 5-star prospects. Over that same time span, Clemson and Tennessee have also signed five prospects with Alabama landing six. So should Georgia be doing a better job recruiting the metro Atlanta area, or is it just too unrealistic to expect one school to dominate the area? Does Georgia need to re-prioritize how it recruits the area? The numbers show that Georgia, over Smart's tenure, has actually done the best job of any college program in terms of recruiting the area. But a handful of schools are making not insignificant strides. And there's one county in particular that Georgia has repeatedly come up short in. And it happens to be the one that produces more blue-chip recruits than any other in the Atlanta area. It's more metro Atlanta than the whole state When comparing the blue-chip recruits that come from the metro Atlanta area to that of the rest of the state, the data shows that Georgia has done a much better job recruiting the elite prospects from outside the Atlanta area as opposed to those hugging Interstate-285. Georgia has landed 21 blue-chip signees from the metro Atlanta area since Smart's first signing class in 2016. That makes up just over 20 percent of all blue-chip recruits from the area. The rest of the state of Georgia has had 84 prospects ranked as blue-chip recruits. The Bulldogs and Smart have signed or received commitments from 29 of those prospects, good for 34.5 percent of all non-Atlanta area prospects. In this cycle, the metro Atlanta recruits have also made commitments sooner than some of their counterparts. For this cycle, there are 28 total blue-chip prospects in the state. Of the 15 blue-chip prospects from the metro Atlanta area, 12 have already committed. For the rest of the state, only six of those prospects have committed. The 2021 class perhaps best illustrates how Georgia has gone about recruiting the state of Georgia in recent seasons. The Bulldogs have only one commitment from a metro Atlanta prospect, 4-star defensive lineman Jonathan Jefferson. But Georgia has commitments from three blue-chip prospects who all come from outside the metro Atlanta area, including 5-star quarterback Brock Vandagriff. That means that while Georgia has missed out on some of those elite Atlanta prospects, such as linebacker Barrett Carter and cornerback Jordan Hancock, a number of the best players in the state, such as 5-star offensive tackle Amarius Mims and 4-star wide receiver Deion Colzie, are still available for the Bulldogs to land. A closer look at Gwinett County Of the 202 blue-chip prospects Georgia has produced over the past five years, 42 have come from Gwinett County. The county produces the most blue-chips in the entire state and is one of the top talent producers in the entire country. And in Smart's time as the head coach at Georgia, he's landed just three blue-chip recruits from the area, with the last being Warren Ericson in the 2018 signing class. So when people complain about Georgia's recruiting efforts in the Atlanta area, they're most likely wondering why the Bulldogs haven't done a better job recruiting Georgia's top county. The 2021 class once again illustrates Georgia's struggles in this part of the state. The top three players in Gwinett County also double as the top three players in the metro Atlanta area. And all of them have already committed to playing outside of the state. Carter and Hancock, teammates at Suwanee, Ga.'s North Gwinnett High School committed to Clemson. Those two both play at positions of need for Georgia in this cycle. Speaking before his decision, Carter said that Georgia was a finalist in part because it was the hometown team. But Carter still ended up picking the Tigers, who are only about 30 minutes farther away. While being the local team does often gives Georgia a foot in the door, it's usually not enough on its own to convince one of the country's best prospects that it is the best place for his future. Related: What Barrett Carter's decision means for Georgia and where the Bulldogs go next in 2021 recruiting Then there's running back Cody Brown. He stars for Parkview High School in Lilburn, Ga as he rushed for 1,676 yards in his junior season. While Georgia wants to take two running backs in this class, Brown committed to Tennessee earlier in May. Georgia already has one commitment in the cycle from running back Lovasea Carroll, originally from Warrenton, Ga., before transferring to IMG Academy in Florida. The Bulldogs are also well-positioned with Donovan Edwards, a running back from West Bloomfield, Mich., who is a higher rated prospect than Brown. In recent cycles Georgia has shown it has no problem looking outside of the Peach State to land top talent. The last cycle saw Georgia bring in Kendall Milton from Clovis, Calif. In the 2018 cycle, Georgia went to North Carolina for Zamir White and Miami for James Cook. The 2017 cycle saw them land D'Andre Swift from Philadelphia. Given that Georgia is RBU' and can use that brand nationally, it's probably not a coincidence that Elijah Holyfield is the only metro Atlanta running back Georgia has signed since Smart has taken over. Of the six blue-chip prospects from Gwinett in the 2021 cycle, all of them are already committed to schools other than Georgia. And each of them will play for team's Georgia will see on its 2021 schedule in Clemson, Tennessee and Florida. The 5-star level Gwinett currently doesn't have any 5-star prospects for this recruiting class, but the 2019 class saw the country produce five 5-star prospects. And all five of them elected to play their college football outside of the state. Across the rest of the metro Atlanta area though, the Bulldogs have done much better at attracting the 5-star prospects. The Bulldogs have gone into Fulton, Cobb, Dekalb and Henry counties to land a 5-star prospect. Gwinett is the only county that has produced a 5-star prospect that Smart hasn't landed at least one from dating back to the 2016 cycle. But while the Bulldogs may not have landed the likes of an Arik Gilbert or an Owen Pappoe, they've more often than not shown they can recover and land an elite prospect from outside this footprint. Pappoe, who played for Grayson High School in Gwinett County and ultimately signed with Auburn, was a key linebacker target in the 2019 cycle. After Georgia missed out on him, it pivoted and landed Nakobe Dean out of Lake Horn, Miss. Dean was actually a higher-rated prospect in the cycle and had a promising freshman season for the Bulldogs. Related: Georgia LB Nakobe Dean on path to greatness by all measures Georgia did something similar at the wide receiver spot in 2019. After seeing Jadon Haselwood de-commit and sign with Oklahoma, the Bulldogs flipped George Pickens, who went on to have a better freshman season than Haselwood. County UGA commit/signee Fulton 6 Cobb 5 Dekalb 4 Gwinett 3 Henry 2 Douglas 1 This is where Georgia's national recruiting success, especially in the past two seasons, has really helped make up for some of those misses in the metro Atlanta area. 'We might have been second or third on a national kid that was a really good player. Say a Kendall (Milton), Say a Kelee (Ringo), but we won a lot of those,' Smart said while discussing Georgia's 2020 signing class in February. 'The other part is we lost some instate battles that were really, really good players.' 'So I think the two of those merged just sort of happened at unique positions where we would've taken the in-state guy or the out of state guy. It just so happened we got the out of state guy.' The growing orange concern As Smart mentioned, Georgia has been missing out more on in-state players. So with Georgia getting more and more of its elite players from outside the Peach State, which schools are hurting the Bulldogs the most, especially inside the metro Atlanta area? The biggest one to know is the Clemson Tigers. Under Dabo Swinney the Tigers have always done well in the state, while landing the likes of Deshaun Watson and Trevor Lawrence. But in recent cycles, they've put in even more focus on the Atlanta area and it has paid off. The Tigers signed multiple Atlanta area prospects in each of the last five signing classes, including 5-star defensive end Myles Murphy and 5-star cornerback Andrew Booth in the last two cycles. And they've gotten off to a strong start in the 2021 cycle, as Clemson already has commitments from four Atlanta-area blue-chippers, including the top two overall talents in Hancock and Carter. The other team that has most recently made significant progress in Atlanta is Tennessee. The Volunteers have also landed multiple signees in each of the past two recruiting cycles, and have two commitments in the 2021 class in Brown and 4-star wide receiver Julian Nixon. As Jeremy Pruitt continues to become more established at Tennessee, it's clear it Atlanta is going to become an even bigger and more crucial part of his program. And that likely will come at the expense of Georgia, even though the Bulldogs continue to do a better job of recruiting the area than any other program. And after Alabama got shut out in the 2018 cycle, it signed six blue-chip prospects over the past two cycles. Unlike Tennessee and Clemson though it holds no 2021 commitments from one of the prospects in the area. The fact that just about every major SEC power is or needs to recruit Atlanta at a high level only makes things more difficult for Georgia. It won't be like it was for USC with the Los Angeles or Miami recruiting south Florida for those super teams of the late 1980's and early 90's. There's simply too much regional competition in metro Atlanta for Georgia to dominate it, as opposed to how LSU handles New Orleans. What you'll notice about the list above is that all but one of these teams is an SEC program, and Clemson essentially operates as one from the comfort of the ACC. Atlanta isn't just responsible for supplying the home-state Bulldogs with top recruits, it's a key part of several of the best programs in the nation's top conference. From a pure numbers standpoint, sure Georgia could do a better job of recruiting the metro Atlanta. If Smart and his staff had ignored positional need and signed just the 22 blue-chip recruits from the metro Atlanta area in the 2020 class, Georgia would've finished with the No. 4 overall recruiting class. But in doing so, the Bulldogs then probably don't get a Milton, a Ringo, a Mekhail Sherman or a Marcus Rosemy. All players who figure to be huge pieces of what Georgia continues to build in the coming seasons. Missing out on a Carter or a Gilbert at the moment should be seen a miss, given in the last two cycles those two players have played at a position of need for the Georgia program. But when the Bulldogs are able to go out land a Darnell Washington and a possibly a Smael Mondon instead, the misses in the metro Atlanta aren't a reason to question Smart's recruiting results. Georgia is still the only program in the country to sign a top-three recruiting class in each of the previous four recruiting cycles. Those first two cycles saw Georgia lean heavily on the metro Atlanta area. These last two have seen Georgia skew more nationally for those elite recruits. And while Clemson and Tennessee have picked up a few more wins in the area, they're not exactly storming the gates and raiding the area for all of the top recruits. The Bulldogs are still getting their fair share and more so than any other program. It's just that no program, not even a Georgia program that is among the national elite in the country, can be expected to dominate the metro Atlanta area from a recruiting standpoint. The area is just too deep and too vital to so many other programs for that to happen. Full list of all metro Atlanta recruits since 2016 More Georgia football stories from around DawgNation Daniel Martin: Elite 2022 defensive athlete describes his 'family' feeling at UGA Georgia freshman Kelee Ringo works out with NFL All-Pro, preparing for greatness WATCH 3 things: What's next for college football return Georgia football podcast: An example of Jamie Newman hype that Kirby Smart probably likes Jamaree Salyer has been one of the big winners of Georgia's offseason Kirby Smart reveals thoughts on return, Georgia outlines voluntary workout transition plan Why aggressiveness, not athleticism, could mark the most important difference between Jamie Newman and Jake Fromm Dawgs on Twitter My Big dogs working! pic.twitter.com/0T5632Q8J1 Outlaw The Strength Coach (@outlaw_coach) May 25, 2020 Tuff https://t.co/1XJeVmuSfY Justin Shaffer (@ShafferJustin54) May 23, 2020 Sounds Before the Snap with @CoachSchuUGA #ATD #GoDawgs pic.twitter.com/WQhdVvmWOu Georgia Football (@GeorgiaFootball) May 24, 2020 Ernie Johnson gave us the best thing you'll see all year long #TheMatch pic.twitter.com/FKTgsmIfC4 Kevin Gray Jr. (@CTSportsRadio) May 24, 2020 Good Dawg of the Day This is Kosi. If he really concentrates, he can shoot rainbows out of his head. 13/10 magical as h*ck pic.twitter.com/Pemo8kaaml WeRateDogs (@dog_rates) May 22, 2020 The post A deep dive into Georgia football recruiting facts, figures and fallacies in metro Atlanta appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Social media has never played a bigger role in sports than it has the past 2 1/2 months with college sports sidelined on account of the coronavirus. For better and sometimes for worse, fanbases have relied heavily on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter for their sports takes of late. Certainly, social media had a field day on Sunday after watching 'The Match ll' on television featuring Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson. There was key insight into the Georgia football program to be found on Twitter, too. More social media buzz is schedule for Tuesday, when UGA star pitcher Emerson Hancock holds a 10 a.m. Zoom press conference to announce his future intentions with the Major League Baseball Draft approaching. On Wednesday, UGA athletic director Greg McGarity joins DawgNation at noon for the On The Beat program. The show moved from its customary 7:30 p.m. Monday slot on account of Memorial Day. Georgia basketball coach Tom Crean appeared last week. The Bulldogs have a reloaded team that looks to break more records next season. RELATED: How Tom Crean plans to turn Georgia basketball into a winner Here are three social media blasts worth noting from the Memorial Day weekend: Monty speaks up and out Georgia senior Monty Rice has yet to make first-team All-SEC, and he's hardly a household name even in his home state of Alabama. But the feeling here is Rice has evolved into the leader and player Kirby Smart knew he could be two years ago when he tabbed him to step in Roquan Smith's shoes at linebacker. Rice echoed his head coach's Sugar Bowl post-game sentiments when he called out himself and teammates on Memorial Day, setting a tone that's sure to roll into workouts when UGA players return on June 8. WATCH: Kirby Smart sends stern message after Sugar Bowl win It's one thing for a coach to say it, but another when a team leader like Rice is sending the message in the locker room when the coaches aren't around. I've been on a defense that was supposed to be dominant and we weren't. Wanna know why? 1word complacency #ripshotime #lastyeardontmatter Monty Rice (@RiceMonty) May 25, 2020 It's worth noting Georgia led the nation in scoring defense and rushing defense last season and ranked third in total defense and eighth in pass efficiency defense. It's also worth pointing out that it was Rice throwing a fit in the postgame of the Auburn game. While many others celebrated a 21-14 win, Rice was aggravated UGA gave up its first rushing TD of the season. WATCH: Monty Rice more evidence of invisible progress during COVID-19 break And, from the sounds of it, incoming freshmen like Kelee Ringo will see to it returning starters can't afford to get complacent. RELATED: Kelee Ringo trains with NFL star, could make sudden impact at cornerback Peyton tees off Former Tennessee standout and five-time NFL MVP Peyton Manning is perhaps the greatest pitch man in football history, so he was right at home being mic'd up for 'The Match ll' golf event with Brady, Woods and Mickelson. Manning hilariously explained why he wouldn't match the signature red and black colors worn by his golf partner, Woods. 'I'm mot wearing black and red, that's Georgia Bulldog colors, I mean, I just can't do that,' Manning said. 'If you want me to get sick on the first hole I'll do it. 'I'm not gonna let Kirby Smart get a picture of me in black and red for their social media account.' #Georgia fans take note: social media matters, even Peyton conscientious of Kirby Smart https://t.co/xNX3jz8bIJ MikeGriffith32 (@MikeGriffith32) May 24, 2020 Tennessee has elevated its program image through social media throughout the offseason like no other program, trumpeting a No. 2 recruiting ranking that currently hinges more on volume than average player rating. To boot, the Vols social media account is promoting fictitious cartoon 'Coach Duggs' playing video games, celebrating the animated action as though it was real. Gametime Back where it all began Tennessee @ Toledo Starts Now -> https://t.co/MzqHRTGM0Z pic.twitter.com/2so1jP0swO Big Cat (@BarstoolBigCat) May 25, 2020 RELATED: Vols rewriting recruiting playbook Jake's belated farewell Celebrated Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm slipped away from the Bulldogs' program via a social media farewell on Jan. 8. RELATED: Jake Fromm drops surprising decision on Georgia, ends decorated career It seemed odd that a player so highly regarded and accomplished as Fromm would choose to bid his program and fan base farewell via a social media post rather than an in-person press conference. The personable Fromm is as celebrated a home-state hero as one will find. From his heroic Little League World Series days in Warner Robins, to his fascinating and fun character reveal as a star of the Netflix QB1 Series. Fromm, now in the role of NFL underdog quarterback as a rookie with the Buffalo Bills, took time to share his sentiments for Georgia through the school's football account on Saturday. Most everyone knew how Fromm felt about the Bulldogs, but to finally hear him acknowledge the legacy he leaves behind had to leave UGA fans feeling fulfilled Fromm shared some of his favorite memories, concluding, 'What's not to love about it? Everything, honestly . I loved every minute of it, I wouldn't trade it for anything in the entire world. 'The fans are amazing, and that's what makes Georgia football fun, the whole state of Georgia and DawgNation gets on board.' . An Experience Unlike Any Other | @FrommJake takes us back to some of his favorite memories as a Dawg #ATD #GoDawgs pic.twitter.com/mYjAS6y94A Georgia Football (@GeorgiaFootball) May 23, 2020 DawgNation Georgia football offseason Kirby Smart shares thoughts on June 8 return to campus Jamaree Salyer one of the big offseason winners for Georgia Rival programs looming on recruiting trail for Bulldogs Podcast: George Pickens should ease Jamie Newman transition WATCH: Jamie Newman gets offseason work with Justin Fields The post 3 Georgia football social media blasts from Monty Rice, Peyton Manning and Jake Fromm appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Want to attack every day with the latest UGA football recruiting info? That's what the Intel brings. This entry will serve as the firstDawgNation profile for highly-regarded 2022 defensive athlete Daniel Martin. There is a lot of material to share here. There are already a few connections from impressive 2022 defensive athlete Daniel Martin to the University of Georgia. His mother, Denise Livingston, is a UGA grad. That Martin family tree will also list former Georgia Bulldog star Mecole Hardman Jr. as a cousin. The roots of Martin's family trace back to Hartwell near Elbert County. Martin just committed to play in the 2022 All-American Bowl out in Texas, too. That elite invitation and early pledge to that prestigious game will say something about his skill set. That early career goal takes him back to his FBU (Football University) days with other top 2022 prospects like Rabun County's Gunner Stockton and Grayson's Marquis Groves-Killebrew. Martin and Groves-Killebrew aspire to play together in college. That topic among close friends will come up a lot on the recruiting trail, but those two make a more convincing argument than most of their peers do. 'That's my brother right there,' Martin said. 'We've got a great relationship. There's a high chance we will be playing together. Every time that we are together everything goes well. We are always communicating. We have got very good vibes with each other.' Those two would hang together for weeks in the summer. That was even prior to their rise as elite 2022 football prospects. They now train with the highly-successful Hustle Inc. 7-on-7 football program. Martin articulates why he wants to excel at football with great passion. 'Football is in my blood and it is what my family does,' Martin said. 'It is like everybody in my family plays football so it is like an I-have-to-do-it-situation and I've got to be there for my Mom and my parents. If I get where I want to be in football, it will make a difference for us.' The Marietta High playmaker is the youngest of three brothers. The oldest played college football as well but gave it up to pursue a career as a special education teacher. His middle brother is currently playing at the junior college level. It sounds like all the boys in his family play football. When he picked up his recent UGA offer, it was met with great joy in his family. Blessed and honored to receive an offer to play at The University of Georgia #UGA #GODAWGS @DellMcGee @KirbySmartUGA @CoachDanLanning @Coach_N_Bryant @CoachSchuUGA @CoachCwarren @TravionScott @3DMocha @MHSFBFAMILY @tballardqbcoach @TWithJay pic.twitter.com/vUYSWEJVlK Daniel Martin (@Mr_DanielMartin) May 6, 2020 'My mom graduated from Georgia so she was really excited and my auntie graduated from Georgia,' he said. Mom will play it cool, though. 'She's always wanted me to go to Georgia but if that is not the best choice for me then she will understand,' Martin said. Hardman also did not apply press coverage about being a Dawg. 'He just said that for him it was the best choice and he would love for me to go there,' Martin said. 'But if it is not the best choice for me at that time then he will understand.' Martin said he been to Georgia at least five times. He counted up trips to four games. How does he feel about Georgia? 'I've been up to Georgia plenty of times and it is just like the feeling of even if you are not playing there and even if you are not committed there you are still family,' he said. 'I love the vibes there. Everybody is nice. Everybody is cool. I haven't visited a lot of places as many times as I have visited Georgia.' 'Every time I go up there it is the same thing. Everybody is saying Hi' and asking how your day was. It is just always a great feeling up there.' The 6-foot-3, 190-pound Martin has been that tall since he enrolled at Marietta. He picked up the nickname of 'six-three' awhile back. The tall jokes have been constant, but that is a very good thing. Martin currently charts as the nation's No. 5 OLB and the nation's No. 48 overall prospect for 2022 on 247Sports. The surface level scouting stuff about Daniel Martin Dell McGee is the primary recruiter for the Bulldogs with Martin. He extended that offer to become a Bulldog. He was offered to play OLB for Georgia, but that might not be his best position. 'When I got the offer I was so surprised,' Martin said. 'I was thinking I would need more film to get a Georgia offer. But once he did, it was just a great feeling to know that I got an offer from my home team and the team I grew up watching and watching my cousin play there and see what that did for him. It was just a great feeling.' Georgia and Oregon were his dream schools coming up. He has basically only visited Auburn and Georgia with any frequency up to this point. 'Georgia is definitely a top school that I always looked up to,' Martin said. McGee was able to track Martin for more than a minute on his other trips to check out Marietta High over the years. That program has been a hotbed over the last 2-3 years and Martin is the type of athlete who will stand out on any field. He was even skilled enough to be an injury stopgap replacement at quarterback for the Blue Devil freshman team in 2018. Martin was also a freshman varsity starter at Marietta High and handled himself quite well. He further distinguished himself between the lines as a terrific plug-and-play defender for the GHSA Class 7A state champions last fall, too. Let's zoom in on one specific aspect of the stretch run to the playoffs. While he started most of the season at what would be seen as the 'Star' position in Georgia's defense, that spot is known as the 'Stud' in the Marietta High defensive look. When playoff time came around, it meant he needed to be prepared to get a good look from the first-team Marietta offense. The Marietta offense needed some great weekly prep from the Blue Devil defense, too. We've heard of the term 'iron sharpens iron' ad naseum these days. Well, this became a case of 'Arik' sharpens iron. Martin was the iron that was sharpened by the 'Arik' in that little nugget. That would be 2020 5-star tight end Arik Gilbert. 'Not every kid is going to be 6 feet, 5 inches and 250 pounds and run routes like Arik can,' Martin said. No recent prospect has been able to put all of those elements together the way Gilbert has. When those two went at it, it was a battle. Gilbert didn't win all of those either. That is a highly-impressive statement given that Gilbert is one of the finest hybrid receivers to come out of the state of Georgia in years. 'When I competed against him, it just made me better,' Martin said. 'It taught me that I couldn't be as physical as I wanted to with everybody. People can be the same size as me and I will have to rely on my feet more rather than my strength and my hands. I would have to play off more and wait for his reactions in the game.' He was the senior prospect in his varsity prime. Martin was the up-and-coming sophomore. There's a range of opinion that conveys that Martin was able to blanket and shut down Gilbert anywhere from 25 to maybe 40 percent of the time on his best days. 'When he and Arik would go at in on one-on-ones, it was always competitive,' Marietta head coach Richard Morgan said. 'Daniel won his share of battles whether it was in coverage. Maybe it was getting off a block. He did his part. I don't know the exact statistics are, but either way he performed very well. Especially just to be a high school sophomore going against a guy like Arik.' That little scouting detail there plus big-boy offers from Auburn, Georgia and Oregon over the last two months will certainly validate that his future is very bright. Check the sophomore tape here below to just go ahead and remove all doubt. It will not include his five games and 25 tackles and that one Pick-6 against McEachern from his freshman campaign. 'I love contact,' Martin said. The back-and-forth debate about Daniel Martin right now He does not yet have a 247Sports composite rating. The pure 247Sports ranking sheet for Martin will list him as the nation's No. 5 OLB and the No. 48 overall prospect. That's a top 50 player nationally. But there's this thing. Check him in person to the side here. Those shoulders don't really scream 'SEC outside linebacker' and that's not necessarily a bad thing here. Is he a future linebacker? Is he a safety? Is he a future 'Star' or a nickel corner in the right matchups? That is certainly an interesting debate. Yet it seems likely that his frame and shoulders won't really lend itself to a projection that he will be 245 pounds one day in the SEC or another big-boy conference. It is already cliche in the recruiting world to label him as an 'Isaiah Simmons' type of defensive athlete. That phrasing has certainly gone viral over the last eight months, but the most honest thing to say here is that Martin can be used in a variety of ways in a defense with the same creativity that Clemson had for Simmons over the last two seasons. What position does Martin think he will play on Saturdays? 'I feel like I can be anything they wanted me to be just to be honest,' Martin said. 'I can go down the line and be aggressive and beat offenses with the speed. I can stay in the box and use my strength and move the linemen out of the way to get to the running back. I can cover real well. Just where ever they would need me.' 'I can play strong safety. I can come down in the middle. I can play man coverage. I feel like I can play anything.' He has the most fun lined up at strong safety. 'That's where I have the most freedom while moving around,' he said. 'I can visualize everything and look down and break on the ball coming downhill and all of that. I can also go get the balls that the quarterbacks throw, too.' The head coach of the defending Class 7A state champions share his views on that intriguing topic. 'In our defense he is the Star' or the Stud' for us, and in my opinion that is his natural position,' Marietta high school Richard Morgan said. 'You don't have to substitute for him on third-and-long with a fifth defensive back when you go nickel or dime because he can still do that. He plan man coverage against slot receivers.' 'He can stay on the field the entire game. He's just got a great skill set. He's so long and rangy he can cover the curl and the flat. He can blitz the quarterback. You're not run to the width of the field against him because he is just going to outflank you and make the play. It is difficult to just get around him.' Martin initially wanted to play safety for Marietta as a freshman. But he was already so aggressive and physical that the OLB spot just fit him better. 'He does have the skill set to play that boundary safety,' Morgan said. 'A lot of it is going to depend on how much bigger he gets.' The rising junior has a safety's skill set in a frame that might project in two years to an OLB in terms of his body. 'To me, that's what he is,' Morgan said. 'He's a safety, but he's such a great tackler and a great guy when he's close to the line of scrimmage that you can bring him on blitzes and things like that. He's got a safety skill set, but he's got that linebacker build and that linebacker mentality. He's just the combination. I know the coaches that I have talked to about him compare him to Isiah Simmons.' 'To me that is a great comparison because of what he can do on the football field. But he still has to grow and develop and take your game to the next level. But I think where he is at now as a sophomore, I do think that skill set is very similar.' His Marietta film doesn't show off his ability to play man coverage, but he is very skilled at that, too. His work with Hustle, Inc. and Justin Miller have sharpened those tools, too. Miller shined brightly at Clemson and spent seven years in the NFL. The former Pro Bowler is now a well-known and highly-sought DB trainer in the Atlanta area. Martin was always too big to cover guys coming up. He was always asked to play defensive end or linebacker or wide receiver. But he can certainly open up his hips and walk backwards in coverage. The 6-foot-3, 195-pound rising junior can shut down elite wide receivers at his size. 'I've had to prove to everybody that it doesn't matter about your size,' he said. 'You can play where ever you want. You just have to put your mind to it.' Whenever he is asked what position he plays, he starts off with the same answer. 'I start off with athlete and then if they ask me to be specific I will say outside linebacker-slash-nickel,' Martin said. Did you know the weekly DawgNation.com 'Before the Hedges' program is now available as an Apple podcast? Click to check it out and download. The Daniel Martin stories that we won't soon forget The narrative scope so far has just been about Daniel Martin the player and some of his recruiting interest. If you've read this blog for anytime now, we don't just leave it at that around here. What is Martin like was a person? Well, that's the stuff that locker rooms can build a program around. 'I'd love to commit on my uncle's birthday because my uncle passed a couple of years back,' Martin said. 'That was a person who always pushed me and I always looked up to and he was always helping me. Hopefully, I can commit on that day to honor him.' That is always an admirable gesture right there. Patrick Gibbs was born on September 19. That was his mother's brother. The Martin family lost Gibbs two years ago due to a heart attack. Gibbs was 38. 'He played football but he didn't make it that far,' Martin said. 'But he would always come to my games and support me and call me after my games to see how I did. He was pretty much just a great uncle. When my Dad wasn't around, he stepped in and helped me.' Morgan proved to be very insightful in adding to the character sketch of Martin as a young man. Not just his ability to fly in off the edge and blow up a bubble screen. 'I've got one,' Morgan said. 'Not a lot of other people know about it.' There's no need to share the names of his teammates here in this story. The actions taken by Martin more than carry the story. The Blue Devils always dress up on Fridays. It is part of the character education in Morgan's program. Marietta is dressed to come to work on game days. Martin began to notice the same shoes and styles and clothing attire on a few of his teammates. His concern was met by a few of his teammates, too. They really didn't have anything to keep dressing up for those business trips. 'So the next Saturday he got him, the boy on our team and a couple of teammates and they took him to the mall,' Morgan said. 'They bought him clothes and shopped for him.' Everyone needs help from time to time. The simply wanted their teammate to fit in with the rest of the team and not have to worry about sticking out. 'He didn't publicize it at all,' Morgan said. 'It was not a big deal to him. Just being a good teammate. I only know about it because his mom sent me a picture of the boys at the mall. That's how I found out about it.' The rising sophomore is also on a mentorship program at Marietta High School. It afforded him the opportunity to take a special needs student to the prom as her date at an tailor-made event for those individuals in Gwinnett County. 'He was a young lady's date and took her there,' Morgan said. 'That's just the thing with Daniel. He does a lot of things already for other people that doesn't get noticed. But college coaches need to be aware of that, too.' 'They need to know about the quality and character of this young man, too. Not just how well he plays football. You want to invest in kids with great character also as well as great athletic ability. It is very reassuring for them to know they are getting that full package there with him.' Look for Martin to also be featured more at receiver this fall. He's capable of 30-to-40 catches on the offensive side of the ball for the defending Class 7A champions, too. His educational aspiration is also something serious, too. 'I haven't really looked that deep into it but I love animals so if football doesn't work out I want to be a veterenarian or something in that nature,' Martin said. Martin is a fan of a certain specific species. 'I've always had dogs,' Martin said. 'I just love dogs.' DAWGNATION RECRUITING (the recent reads on DawgNation.com) HEDGES: The rival national programs between UGA and another No. 1 class Brock Bowers: Nation's No. 3 TE knows what he needs to do before his college decision De'Jahn Warren: The 'nugget' for the nation's No. 1 JUCO prospect with UGA Elite cornerback Marquise Groves-Killebrew is a 'No. 1 priority' for 2022 Decrypting that recent tweet from 5-star LB Smael Mondon Jr. Prince Kollie: The ILB target who had 1,085 yards as a receiver in 2019 Lovasea Carroll: DawgNation goes one-on-one with the 2021 RB commit Dylan Fairchild: Elite O-line target includes UGA among his top six schools What exactly are these virtual recruiting visits like right now? How the 2021 commits turned a slick edit into Amarius Mims Appreciation Day Dallas Turner: Why Alabama has a slight lead on UGA for the elite pass rusher HEDGES: Why James Williams looms so large for the 2021 Georgia class Georgia's program is now moving past the de-commitments of previous cycles Georgia extends an impactful offer to future 5-star RB Richard Young The 5 things you haven't read yet about recent OLB commit Elijah Jeudy Georgia OL commit Micah Morris made a silent pledge to UGA quite a long time ago Jermaine Burton: Why coming home meant everything to Georgia's next great WR The post Daniel Martin: Elite 2022 defensive athlete describes his 'home' feeling at UGA appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Georgia has arguably the best secondary in the nation returning, but there's talk incoming freshman Kelee Ringo is so good he might ultimately win a starting job this season. Ringo, no doubt, has the mindset and approach along with talent to make a sudden impact for the Bulldogs. WATCH: Early takeaways on newcomers, Kelee Ringo leads No. 1 class The No. 1-ranked cornerback prospect in the country certainly isn't resting on his laurels, as his recent workout at Ford Sports Performance indicated. NFL trainer Tracy Ford post pictures on his twitter account of the young and gifted Ringo working out with 5-time NFL Pro Bowl cornerback Richard Sherman on Saturday. Ford said Ringo, the No. 4 overall player in the nation per the 247Sports composite, was 'getting the words of wisdom.' The #1 rated HS corner in the country in 2020 @KeleeRingo getting the words of wisdom today from the Best Corner in the @NFL @RSherman_25 during today's on field session. The knowledge is priceless when the vision is clear and the people are Pure! #FSPCulture #WeJustWorking pic.twitter.com/efzQdQiEoF Tracy Ford (@TFordFSP) May 24, 2020 There's sure to be plenty more of those from Georgia secondary coach Charlton Warren, one of the more celebrated position coach hires of the Smart era last summer. RELATED: What Kelee Ringo's decision to attend Georgia means for future Fact is, the 6-foot-2, 205-pound Ringo will arrive in Athens in June with NFL prototype size. 'Everybody that first sees him goes he is probably a safety right?' said Ringo's Saguaro High School coach, Jason Mohns. 'You're not used to seeing corners that are that big and that physical. But the kid is a 10.4 state champion in the 100 meters. He's a back-to-back 100 meters champion in the state of Arizona. He ran the fastest time in the state last year. So why do you need to move him?' 'He's got great feet. He's got great hips. He's got tremendous speed. He's got great length. He's got the instincts of a great cornerback. He's what I have heard described as a unicorn. They don't make them like Kelee.' Indeed, but a ton of experienced competition awaits Ringo in Athens. Senior Bowl executive director Jim Nagy was commenting last week on how much experience the Bulldogs bring back from a secondary that ranked No. 8 in the nation in pass efficiency. Eric Stokes, D.J. Daniel and Tyson Campbell all have multiple starts under their belts, and safety Richard LeCounte has the look of a preseason All-American. Hard to imagine any team having more upperclassmen DB talent than @GeorgiaFootball. Seniors DS Richard LeCounte and CBs D.J. Daniel & Mark Webb are all next-level players. RS junior CB Eric Stokes is also a @seniorbowl candidate if he grads in December. #TheDraftStartsInMOBILE pic.twitter.com/Sow4qhykez Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) May 18, 2020 Lewis Cine shined in place of safety J.R. Reed in his Cotton Bowl start, and then there's all sorts of talented depth in the defensive backs room. RELATED: J.R. Reed says UGA defense won't be no name' much longer Senior Mark Webb has the inside track at the star position but sophomore Tyrique Stevenson impressed in the spring of 2019 and appears poised to make an impact. Redshirt sophomore Divaad Wilson, junior Ameer Speed, junior Christopher Smith, junior William Poole and junior Latavious Brini are all considered in the mix. RELATED: 3 parting shots from dominant Sugar Bowl win over Baylor Georgia signed some other talented defensive backs, too, including early enrollees Major Burns and Jalen Kimber. But Ringo, the sentiment is, could be a difference-maker. The fact he was willing to travel up to Washington to work out before reporting to Georgia is merely more evidence of just how special of an addition Ringo could be. DawgNation Georgia football offseason Kirby Smart shares thoughts on June 8 return to campus Jamaree Salyer one of the big offseason winners for Georgia Rival programs looming on recruiting trail for Bulldogs Podcast: George Pickens should ease Jamie Newman transition WATCH: Jamie Newman gets offseason work with Justin Fields The post Georgia freshman Kelee Ringo works out with NFL All-Pro, preparing for greatness appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS Now comes the hard part. So says Georgia athletic director Greg McGarity with the return of college football underway across the country. 'We have one chance to get this right and we all know what happens if we don't get it right, it certainly pushes us back to the way things are right now,' McGarity said on the Bulldogs Game Day program. RELATED: Kirby Smart discusses Georgia's return to campus 'So we've got to be careful, we've got to do our due diligence, we've got to do a tremendous educational job not only for our staff, but our student athletes, for his new world.' SEC commissioner Greg Sankey announced that the league's new world on campus can begin as early as June 8 with voluntary workouts on campus. RELATED: SEC presidents' vote, what it means for Georgia football The football coaches will not be allowed to oversee the workouts, but the programs' strength and conditioning staff will be permitted to supervise. What next? DawgNation Friday Night Mike 1. Uniform football start College programs' return to campus for workouts vary, but the start date for football practices overseen by coaches is expected to be uniform. The Big Ten is allowing its schools to return to campus at their own discretion, Nebraska among the early returners on the first eligibile date, June 1. The SEC has announced a June 8 date, and the Big 12 schools can return as early as June 15. The conference commissioners have agreed on a six-week training camp in effect by mid-July with an on-time season start date in mind. UGA officials have discussed among many possibilities quarantining the coaches and players on campus during a two-introductory phase. McGarity pointed out there is much to be determined. 'It's only the first step and there are many details still to be determined on every campus,' McGarity said. 'We'll certainly be driven by the medical community and our sports medicine staff led by (director of sports medicine) Ron Courson.' The NCAA oversight committee had recommended the six weeks of preparation before the season. 2. Fans in the stands The most fluid element of college football's return also figures to be the most controversial, with impassioned fans holding their collective breath as in-person attendance remains in limbo. Georgia, like every other program, has been considering several models with any sort of final decision still weeks way and almost completely at the mercy of the status of the COVID-19 pandemic. Ohio State announced last week it was considering a social-distanced model of 20,000 to 22,000 fans in its 102,000-seat football coliseum. Georgia is considering several attendance models that would take into consideration various COVID-19 conditions and circumstances, using a similar formula to Ohio State from approximately 18,000 on up. The question is, how would the tickets be distributed beyond essential personnel needed for sideline and stadium operations? Major donors, parents of players, recruits and students would seem to be at the forefront of the line in terms of ticket priority. Many scenarios and models are being worked on. 3. Georgia athletes' testing The SEC provided minimum guidelines for its 14-member schools upon announcing the league's June 8 start date with coaching restriction. SEC provides blueprint for team's return A league-appointed 'Medical Guidance Task Force,' which includes top pubic health, infectious disease and sports medicine professionals from across the league, plans a 3-stage screening process and testing symptomatic team members. Georgia's plan, however, takes it a step further and involves COVID testing and the medical evaluations on all student-athletes. The obvious question is what happens when a player or players test positive? How will the quarantine process work? McGarity said early on the key words would be 'testing, tracing and treatment,' but until it plays out, there are questions. Players who test positive will likely have their identities withheld by the school under HIPAA guidelines. The value of the UGA sports scholarship has never been more evident, as the programs need not cut any corners because of the $105 million available in the schools' reserve fund. Only 41 percent of FBS programs have a reserve fund, and many have announced cuts and furloughs, some schools eliminating athletics programs. DawgNation College Football Offseason SEC presidents make it official, looking ahead to June 8 return RELATED: 5 keys, NCAA vote on Wednesday includes pivotal provisions College football return takes turn out West NCAA president Mark Emmert discusses issues with return to campus Les Miles says college football set for return, expert says no fans in stands Return of college football critical to fans' psyche, pocketbooks UGA president Jere Morehead employs 9 research groups for optimal return NCAA advances ball on name, image, likeness player compensation States opening equates to flickering light for college football return Greg Sankey hasn't ruled out a CFB season without all conferences Three keys amid college football return process, from Greg Sankey NCAA board of governors votes unanimously in favor of NIL compensation The post WATCH 3 things: What's next for college football return appeared first on DawgNation.

News

  • More than 5.6 million people worldwide -- including more than 1.6 million in the United States – have been infected with the new coronavirus, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. While efforts to contain the COVID-19 outbreak continue, states have begun to shift their focus toward reopening their economies. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking cases in the U.S. here. Live updates for Wednesday, May 27, continue below:  Worldwide coronavirus deaths top 350K Update 4:46 a.m. EDT May 27: The global death toll attributed to the novel coronavirus reached 350,752 early Wednesday, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally. The United States – with nearly 1.7 million cases, resulting in 98,929 deaths to date – remains the nation with the highest number of infections and virus-related deaths. Brazil now reports the second-highest number of cases worldwide with 391,222, while the United Kingdom’s 37,130 virus-related deaths rank as second highest globally. Trump gives NC governor 1 week to decide if RNC stays in Charlotte amid coronavirus concerns Update 3:27 a.m. EDT May 27: North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper on Tuesday dismissed President Donald Trump’s tweets threatening to move the Republican National Convention from Charlotte. “I’m not surprised by anything I see on Twitter,” Cooper said. “It’s OK for political conventions to be political, but pandemic response cannot be.” According to WSOC-TV, the governor said state health officials will continue to work with convention organizers to draft guidelines that will ensure the event can be conducted safely during the coronavirus pandemic. In a series of tweets Monday morning, the president threatened to pull the event out of North Carolina if Cooper doesn’t immediately sign off on allowing a full-capacity gathering in August, despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Coronavirus has infected more than 62K US health care workers, CDC reports Update 2:10 a.m. EDT May 27: An estimated 62,344 health care professionals in the United States have contracted the novel coronavirus to date, resulting in at least 291 deaths, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed. The latest figures represent a nearly seven-fold increase in less than six weeks. According to CNN, the CDC last highlighted the number of cases among health care workers April 15, revealing a total of 9,282 cases at that time. US coronavirus cases approach 1.7M, deaths near 99K Published 12:40 a.m. EDT May 27: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States surged toward 1.7 million early Wednesday across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands. According to a Johns Hopkins University tally, there are at least 1,681,212 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in at least 98,916 deaths.  The hardest-hit states remain New York with 363,836 cases and 29,302 deaths and New Jersey with 155,764 cases and 11,194 deaths. Massachusetts, with 93,693 cases, has the third-highest number of deaths with 6,473, while Illinois has the third-highest number of cases with 113,195. Only 16 states and territories have confirmed fewer than 6,000 cases each. Five other states have now confirmed at least 52,000 novel coronavirus cases each, including: • California: 99,684 cases, resulting in 3,823 deaths • Pennsylvania: 72,778 cases, resulting in 5,163 deaths • Texas: 57,230 cases, resulting in 1,546 deaths • Michigan: 55,104 cases, resulting in 5,266 deaths • Florida: 52,255 cases, resulting in 2,259 deaths Meanwhile, Maryland, Georgia and Connecticut each has confirmed at least 41,000 cases; Virginia, Louisiana, Ohio and Indiana each has confirmed at least 32,000 cases; Colorado, North Carolina, Minnesota, Tennessee and Washington each has confirmed at least 20,000 cases, followed by Iowa with 17,703 and Arizona with 16,864; Wisconsin and Alabama each has confirmed at least 15,000 cases, followed by Rhode Island with 14,210 and Mississippi with 13,731; Nebraska and Missouri each has confirmed at least 12,000 cases, followed by South Carolina with 10,416; Kansas and Delaware each has confirmed at least 9,000 cases; Kentucky, Utah, the District of Columbia and Nevada each has confirmed at least 8,000 cases, followed by New Mexico with 7,130; Arkansas and Oklahoma each has confirmed at least 6,000 cases. Click here to see CNN’s state-by-state breakdown.
  • North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper on Tuesday dismissed President Donald Trump’s tweets threatening to move the Republican National Convention from Charlotte. “I’m not surprised by anything I see on Twitter,” Cooper said. “It’s OK for political conventions to be political, but pandemic response cannot be.” According to WSOC-TV, the governor said state health officials will continue to work with convention organizers to draft guidelines that will ensure the event can be conducted safely during the coronavirus pandemic. “I supported having the convention in North Carolina. But we have to put the health and safety of North Carolinians as the guiding star in this process, and we hope to continue the discussions and look forward to those discussions with the RNC later on this weekend and into next week,” he later added. For months, Republican leaders’ public posture has been that the party’s national convention, where Trump will be formally nominated in August, is “full steam ahead.” But on Memorial Day, the president appeared to hamstring convention planning by threatening to pull the event from Charlotte because of the governor’s COVID-19 restrictions. In a series of tweets Monday morning, the president threatened to pull the event out of North Carolina if Cooper doesn’t immediately sign off on allowing a full-capacity gathering in August, despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Trump’s tweets Monday came just two days after the state recorded its largest daily increase in positive cases yet. Currently, mass gatherings at venues like arenas are prohibited as part of Cooper’s executive order because of the potential spread of the novel coronavirus. The RNC is set for Aug. 24 through Aug. 27 at the Spectrum Center and Charlotte Convention Center. Trump expressed his concern about spending millions of dollars without knowing if the state would allow them to fully occupy the space. “Plans are being made by thousands of enthusiastic Republicans and others to head to beautiful North Carolina in August,” Trump said. “They must be immediately given an answer by the governor as to whether or not the space will be allowed to be fully occupied.” Trump said if he is not given an answer, he will find another location for the convention. “This is not something I want to do,” Trump said. “Thank you, and I love the people of North Carolina.” Cooper allowed the state to enter a second phase of gradual reopening Friday with some further loosening of restrictions on hair salons, barbers and restaurants. But he said the state must continue to closely watch virus trends and has ordered entertainment venues, gyms and bars to remain closed. On Monday, Cooper responded to Trump’s tweet, saying, “State health officials are working with the RNC and will review its plan as they make decisions about how to hold the convention in Charlotte. North Carolina is relying on data and science to protect our state’s public health and safety.” Cooper warned on Tuesday that it is still too early to give the president the assurances he demanded about “whether or not the space will be allowed to be fully occupied.” “Already, we’ve been in talks with the RNC about the kind of convention that they would need to run, and the kind of options that we need on the table. We’re talking about something that’s going to happen three months from now, and we don’t know what our situation is going to be regarding COVID-19 in North Carolina,” he said. On Monday, Mecklenburg County and the city of Charlotte released a joint statement, saying, “We are in constant communication with our local and federal counterparts to plan and prepare for a safe Republican National Convention (RNC). The City of Charlotte, Mecklenburg County and other local stakeholders will continue to plan for the RNC while respecting national and state guidance regarding the pandemic. We are working with stakeholders to develop guidelines for several large events planned for Charlotte in the coming months including the RNC and anticipate providing that guidance in June.” Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles tweeted: “With the health and safety of our residents and visitors being the top priority, the city of Charlotte will continue to follow guidance from Governor Cooper and public health professionals in determining the best and safest way to host the Republican National Convention. While I’ve remained consistent in my statements regarding the RNC being held in Charlotte, the science and data will ultimately determine what we will collectively do for our city.” Meanwhile, two GOP governors on Tuesday offered up their states to host the Republican National Convention. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp sent an open plea to Trump on Tuesday to consider his state as an alternate site. Kemp’s offer was followed by one from Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. The convention is expected to bring tens of thousands of visitors to the Charlotte area and millions of dollars to the local economy. In a letter that North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen sent to the RNC, she requested a written plan for how the convention plans to address COVID-19 safety protocols. The letter came in response to the president’s tweet Monday and confirmed that the RNC and state officials in North Carolina were in talks about convention planning as recent as Friday. “Jordan Whichard from Governor Cooper’s team shared with you the written protocols that NASCAR developed and then refined after discussions with our public health teams which allowed that event to occur in the Charlotte area this past weekend,” she wrote. “While the RNC convention is obviously a very different event with its unique challenges for COVID-19, we hoped it would help illustrate the type of plan that would facilitate further conversations. The status of COVID-19 infections in our state and in the Charlotte area continues to rapidly evolve, thus, it will be important to have several scenarios planned that can be deployed depending on the public health situation.' Cohen urged the RNC to consider “several scenarios” as they continue to move forward with planning, since the abrupt threat from Trump comes just after North Carolina saw its highest one-day spike in cases over the weekend since the onset of the pandemic. Cooper referenced the letter during Tuesday’s briefing, saying he aims to reach a resolution with the RNC about how to move forward with the event. “We’re going to have to take steps to protect people. We have asked the RNC to present to us in writing their proposals. We’ve had discussions with them about a very limited convention all the way up, and we want to see in writing what their plans are,” Cooper said. “We asked NASCAR to do the very same thing, and NASCAR did a good job this weekend of executing their plan,” he added. “We want to see from the RNC what their plans are, and we have asked them to submit those plans to our public health officials. They have someone hired to advise them as well. And we look forward to the back and forth on that. We’d like to reach a resolution that everybody can be reasonable about that puts public health, safety, the science and the facts as the number one thing we’re trying to do here. So we look forward to those continue conversations. Everyone wants to get back into action soon, but I think everyone knows that we have to take certain steps to make sure we’re protected.' After Cooper’s news conference, Trump said the governor needs to confirm within a week whether the GOP convention in Charlotte can go forward. “If he can’t do it, if he feels he can’t do it, all he has to do is tell us, and then we’ll have to pick another location,” Trump said of Cooper. “I don’t want to have it where we get there and they announce ... ‘Guess what? You can’t put anybody in the arena,’ or you can put a tiny number of people in.” Read more here. –Visit WSOCTV.com for the latest on this developing story.
  • The body of a missing 5-year-old boy has been recovered in Ohio, Adams County Sheriff Kimmy Rogers confirmed Tuesday. According to WHIO-TV, Cameron Walters, who was reported missing from Mineral Springs Lake Resort in Peebles on Monday, was found dead in the water Tuesday, but authorities have not specified where. The boy went missing about 5:15 p.m. Monday, officials said. Groups of volunteers and water rescue crews returned to the campground Tuesday to continue the search for the missing boy, according to WCPO-TV. An Endangered Missing Child Advisory was issued for Walters late Tuesday morning, saying he was believed to be in danger. The Adams County Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with information about the case to call their department at 937-544-2314. No further information was immediately available. – Visit WHIO.com for the latest on this developing story.
  • A hair salon in North Carolina is denying service to employees at a Tyson plant due to a coronavirus outbreak. SmartCuts posted a sign at their Wilkesboro location that read, in part, “Due to the number of Tyson employees who have tested positive for COVID-19, we are unable to serve Tyson employees.' The note was widely circulated on social media. Last week, 570 workers at that Tyson plant tested positive for the coronavirus. Some of the Tyson workers WSOC-TV spoke with were upset by the sign placed outside the SmartCuts, but others said they understand the owners’ decision. David Gentry, who has worked at Tyson for years, doesn’t agree with the ban. “Knock on the door, shoot them a bird and cuss them out,” he said. “That’s me.” The business is about two miles from the Tyson plant. The sign said the business would be “unable to serve Tyson employees until approximately June 8, once the recent COVID outbreak has been controlled.” The business has enacted several precautions to keep workers and customers safe, including mask-wearing, temperature checks and social distancing measures. “I think it’s a good thing because too many people are passing who’ve had this virus,” said one customer, Frances McManus. “That there is something this place has to deal with,” said another customer, James Spears. “Because if they come in with the disease, that’s bringing it into their business.” SmartCuts said it will give Tyson employees a $3 discount once they return to providing services to them. Bob Hartley owns SmartCuts and said he’s not only trying to protect his employees but his customers and the community. “If it is unethical in some way that’s still legal but unethical, we will stop it,” he said. “It’s just an attempt to control the spread of COVID-19 on the Wilkesboro community and among our employee group.”
  • The line to get into That One Place stretched down the walkway outside the restaurant. There was no social distancing and virtually no one wore a facemask as they waited for their party to be called to an open table inside. “I’m excited, I’m looking forward to it,” said John Weiman. “It’s about time. It’s time to make a change.” His wife Michelle Weiman added, “I’m looking forward to it, very hungry. Glad he’s doing it.” The Port Orchard restaurant has been open for takeout service during the statewide coronavirus shutdown. But restaurant owner Craig Kenady said he was encouraged by his employees to open his business on Memorial Day to customers seated inside as a way of protesting, saying smaller counties such as Kitsap have fewer cases of COVID-19 and should be treated differently than larger counties such as King, Pierce and Snohomish. “I do think if we’re going to take it on a case-to-case basis then we need to actually look at our county based off of our numbers,' said Kenady. “We’re not in it to break laws, not in it to cause problems. We’re not doing this for politics. We’re doing this for freedom.” Staff in the restaurant wore masks and gloves as they serve patrons. Some tables were kept empty to keep customers further apart from each other. Kenady said his protest would last just one day, on Memorial Day before he goes back to takeout only. “We don’t discount the virus at all. We believe in it and we believe in the severity of it. But we also feel at the same time we can safely operate,” Kenady said.
  • Dozens of tombstones dating from the 19th century were found near a North Carolina neighborhood. A Piedmont Natural Gas worker told WSOC-TV that he found dozens of what appeared to be decades-old tombstones in a wooded area behind the Crestdale Crossing neighborhood. The stones appear to be from the 19th century and have what looks like dates and initials carved in them. The discovery piqued the interest of local historian Jeff Houser who said burial grounds are often lost to developments. Houser believes they are footstones created for a family grave. “These were either pulled up from someplace and set into the woods for some reason,” he said. He said the stones might have never been used, but it would take some time to uncover the truth. “We’d like to know why are these are here, how they got there and who are they for,” Houser said. Historians are working to compare the initials on the stones with census records from that time. Houser said that as of now, there is no official record of a cemetery in the area.