Corky Kell Classic notes
Ray Buchanan Jr.'s pledge to Arkansas highlights Cork Kell Classic at Georgia Dome
ATLANTA -- It was a big night at the Georgia Dome for the Corky Kell Classic, which featured a quadruple-header of games matching Gwinnett and Cobb County teams and Ray Buchanan Jr.'s commitment to Arkansas over Ole Miss.
"I just have a great relationship with those Arkansas coaches," said the Suwannee Peachtree Ridge standout CB. "And I love what coach [Bobby] Petrino is doing with that program. It's very exciting. I know I can become an asset to that program. I haven't been there yet but I know people there and they love it."
Buchanan, 5-foot-11 and 180 pounds, is the son of former Atlanta Falcons cornerback Ray Buchanan and like his father, he doesn't lack confidence to play the critical position.
"I think I fit into Arkansas' defense really well," said Buchanan who will take his official visit to Arkansas on Oct. 8th when the Razorbacks host Auburn. "I like to play press and man-to-man. I have quick feet and can run. There are things though that I will keep working on because I know I have to get better."
He worked hard this offseason and learned much from his father about the game and the position.
"My dad has been tremendous," Buchanan said. "We have really worked hard since January. The main thing he has taught me is you have to forget about your mistakes. You have to have a quick memory playing that position because you will get beat."
The elder Buchanan knows his son has what it takes to make it at the next level.
"Ray is smart and intelligent out there," Ray Sr. said. "He has to have more awareness, especially on the deep ball. He needs to work on speed. To play that position well you have to have full-blown speed. But he's quick and physical and loves to play press."
Ray Jr. could have followed his father, who played at Louisville, but his dad is happy his son isn't going to be in his shadow.
"It makes me feel so good as a parent and father," Ray Sr. said. "I didn't want him to go to Louisville because I went to Louisville. I didn't want him to think he had to walk in my shoes. Now he has created his own path. Coach Petrino was at Louisville and here with the Falcons. Those are two teams that I obviously played for and love. It didn't end well at those places for coach. But that just shows you how much trust we have in Bobby Petrino. He's a terrific coach and this is a really good fit for Ray both academically and for football."
Hosch's turn at North GwinnettIt's not his first time under center, but it's Scott Hosch's first time as the man for North Gwinnett High School. Last season he shared the signal-caller duties with C.J. Uzumah and still managed to throw for over a 1,000 yards. Now that Hosch is a fulltime guy, North Gwinnett coach Bob Sphire thinks he has a chance to be special.
"He's brilliant," Sphire said. "Scott has complete command of the offense. He takes our system, knows all the checks, knows where to adjust routes and get guys where they need to be. He can really manage and direct our offense and has a chance to be really, really good."
Hosch, 6-2 and 195 pounds, is being looked at hard by Harvard and Georgia State, while other schools want to see what he does this season.
"He knows how to run our team, he has a very good arm and great mechanics," Sphire said. "Good things are going to happen to him."
Keep an eye on SeymourA junior to watch on North Gwinnett is massive offensive tackle Devondre Seymour, the the cousin of current Oakland Raider Richard Seymour. In fact, Richard has recently adopted DeVondre as his son.
Devondre, 6-5 and 295, played for a small school in South Carolina before moving to Suwannee last year but is relatively new to the game of football. Last season he played on the North Gwinnett junior varsity, his first football season and now he's playing with the big boys.
"He's young and he's green," Sphire said. "But he has a chance to be really, really good. Richard thinks he has a lot of upside but we know he has a ways to go. DeVondre is big and very athletic. He needs to learn to be more aggressive and just learn how to play the position. But boy does he have all the tools."
Grayson Jr. with a pair of offersRunning back Wayne Gallman (Loganville, Ga./Grayson) already has some big-time offers and is one to watch.
"Auburn was the first offer for me," Gallman said. "I was surprised to get that one. I really was. It felt really good to get one like that. I am still pretty shocked."
Shortly after, Clemson offered him.
"I like both of those schools, especially Auburn," Gallman said. "I also really like Florida State a lot."
Besides the Seminoles, Gallman also has interest in the Alabama Crimson Tide and thinks his style could fit any one of the schools.
"I can get away from people," Gallman said. "I am a big dude with some athleticism and speed."
Printz leads LassiterJunior quarterback Eddie Printz (Marietta, Ga./Lassiter) led his team to a come-from-behind win against Snellville Brookwood in the second game of the Corky Kell Classic.
"That was amazing," Printz said. "It was a great game. The offense and defense played well. Our receivers made plays when we needed it."
Printz, 6-4 and 195 pounds, worked hard this offseason and said he has really developed from last year to this season.
"The progression has been huge," Printz said. "I have more experience and just to be in the system another year with these coaches has been a big plus. The offense, the calls and checks, just everything is a little easier for me. That really showed today."
According to Printz he already has scholarship offers from Kentucky, SMU, Arkansas, NC State and others. But it's early for him and he's keeping his options wide open.
"Florida, South Carolina, Duke, Mississippi State, Tennessee and Alabama are some teams that are showing me a lot of interest right now. In the end, I just want to find a school, campus and city where I feel comfortable because I know wherever I go the coaches many not be there. That's just the way things are. At the same time I want to have a good relationship with the coaches and I want to pick a school where I can reach my goals."
A trio of juniors at WaltonMarietta Walton has some talent and three are
Junior prospects running back Tyren Jones, quarterback Parker McCloud and offensive guard Brandon Kublanow had big games in Marietta Walton's win at the Corky Kell Classic.
"It feels awesome," McCloud said. "We have been preparing for this one for a long time. It was marked on our calendar. I am the type of quarterback that has a good arm and I am an accurate passer. I also have leadership skills and I took control of our offense tonight."
At this time McCloud has one offer from Louisville. This is his first year as a starter so he knows other teams will be watching his play carefully this fall.
"No one else is really recruiting me," McCloud said. "So I just don't know yet. I camped at Kentucky, South Carolina and Wake Forest and they all seem interested. I do like Georgia and grew up a fan but I know they have committed someone already."
Perhaps the star of the game was Jones, who had an electrifying 80-yard touchdown run in the second half. He was a transfer from Lassiter and wanted to play well for his new team.
"That was nice," Jones said. "It feels great to do that for my new team. I consider myself an all-around back because I can do things normal backs can't do."
Jones, 5-10 and 186 pounds, doesn't have any scholarship offers yet but there are a handful of schools he likes.
"My top five would be Georgia, LSU, Alabama, Ohio State and Texas," Jones said. "Of that group I like Georgia. They are close to home. I'm also from New Orleans and I like LSU."
One of the guys opening up holes for Jones and pass protecting for McCloud was Kublanow. This 6-3 and 290 pound offensive guard is a nasty and tenacious guy in the trenches. Countless times you would see him just manhandle whoever was in front of him and driving him into the ground.
"I play with determination," Kublanow said. "I have the will to kill people out there."
Kublanow said he is hearing from schools like Georgia, Wake Forest, Florida and Virginia. He also camped at Georgia, Duke and Wake Forest this past summer. But at this time he has no offers.
"I definitely like Georgia," Kublanow said. "I also like Florida, Vandy and the SEC in general. Georgia is just a place where it feels like home to me. It's natural and I grew up a fan."
Another senior standout for North Gwinnett, defensive end/tackle Jordan Washington, holds offers from Mississippi State, Troy, Southern Miss, Indiana and others.
"Jordan has really learned how to push the pocket," Sphire said. "He's more explosive this year. He changes direction better. Jordan has really improved his game."
Robert Nkemdiche played with a cast on his right hand after injuring his thumb in practice trying to make a diving interception. However, it didn't slow down the 6-4 and 265-pound defensive end/part-time running back. He made plays all over the field and scored the game's only touchdown in Grayson's 7-0 win over Marietta Kell.
"It really didn't bother me," said Nkemdiche who is looking at Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, LSU, Florida and others. "I just went out there and did what I had to do. I was going to play and just tried to play as hard as I could."
Jamie Newberg has been covering recruiting both in the Southeast and nationally for 19 years. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.