Chat with Radi Nabulsi
Welcome to DawgNation! On Wednesday, reporter Radi Nabulsi stops by to chat about the state of Georgia football.
Nabulsi joined ESPN.com in 2011 after covering the University of Georgia for Rivals.com for the last four years and for the UGA Athletic Association since 1993. Nabulsi is a graduate of the University of Georgia's Grady College of Journalism and lives in Athens, Ga.
Send your questions now and join Nabulsi Wednesday at noon ET!
Radi Nabulsi (12:37 PM)
We will get started at 1:00 p.m. ET.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Are the Dawgs done at RB in 2014 now with the commitment of Chubb? If so, what offensive position will the staff focus on most the remainder of the recruiting season?
Radi Nabulsi (12:59 PM)
I think they are done. Georgia has proven it can land the top running backs in the country. I can't see another four or five star deciding to try his hand with Sony Michel and Nick Chubb already committed, and Georgia won't settle for a less than stellar tailback. Plus this class has limited room. As for the focus now. Linemen, linemen, linemen. Look for Dyshon Sims and Isiah Wynn to get the, "Why don't you go ahead and commit..." speech.
Brance Young (Macon Georgia)
We all know about Tray Matthews and a beast he is. But what I want to know is about the other safetys that are coming in two in pparticular Shaquile Fluker and Paris Bostic how does the coaches feel like they can contribute
Radi Nabulsi (1:03 PM)
Bostic is another big safety, very physical and a hard hitter. I think they see him as a guy they will develop into the role, like Shawn Williams. Fluker was the one that they see making an immediate impact. Which is the whole point of having an junior college transfer come in. Fluker is a head-hunter and his highlight reel is full of interceptions. He could be what Jakar Hamilton was supposed to be but never was. Fluker is a nasty hitter, but like Matthews, he takes risks. Will be interesting to see how it works out at safety.
What is your feeling on where Lorenzo Carter ends up?
Radi Nabulsi (1:05 PM)
Well since he has no idea, it is tough for me to guess. Alabama and Georgia are his top two for now, mainly because that is where he has visited with his family. I give the Tide the slight lean simply because Norcross High School has been a great pipeline to Tuscaloosa. But my gut feeling is that his personality matches Richt's more than Saban's so I can easily see him in Athens.
What is the home remedy for eating the bones from KFC?
Radi Nabulsi (1:06 PM)
How good of a chance does UGA have of getting Josh Malone?
Radi Nabulsi (1:11 PM)
I like Georgia's chances. If Shakenneth Williams commits first they would still take Malone but I have to think they REALLY want Cameron Sims. It is tough to know how their board looks. Were it me, as talented as Sims is, unless I was certain he was coming to the school I coached, I would take Malone and call it a day. Sims is a talent no doubt, but Malone is a ESPN 150 guy too and Richt has a long policy of first come first serve.
So well this class be any good, because we have not sign any highly rated defensive players?
Radi Nabulsi (1:14 PM)
Yes. When the defensive players commit this class will jump up the rankings (unless all the schools above Georgia get just as many talented recruits). Say UGA were to get ESPN 150 members Malkom Parrish, Elisha Shaw, Lorenzo Carter and Lamont Gaillard, well that would be an amazing class. Georgia either leads or is tied for the lead among those players.
MARI IL [via mobile]
Is this the second year that georgia will win the east since south carolina is not that good offensively and florida is still having qb troubles
Radi Nabulsi (1:19 PM)
I am going ot duck that question since I just don't know. My guess is that Georgia beats South Carolina but I really don't know what Florida has. I will talk with Derek Tyson of GatorNation to get his take on the Florida offense. I know the quarterback issues, but what if the Gators have a monster ground game? I can still see Rhett running the ball when I think about games Georgia should have won based on a mediocre Gator quarterback. -joking- But seriously, Matt Jones and company could be tough to stop.
Ed (Queens Village)
Saw Georgia schedule for first four weeks. Is it possible they be 1-3 before Tennessee game?
Radi Nabulsi (1:20 PM)
No. South Carolina and LSU lost a lot of players just like Georgia did. We will find out who recruited better early in the season. Both of those are home games. I don'f see UGA losing both.
Randi, You may have answered this in a previous chat but did UGA ever hire a full-time special teams coach? It is such an important part of the outcome of the game.
Radi Nabulsi (1:22 PM)
No. And they cannot unless they release one of thew position coaches. The NCAA limits the number of coaches programs are allowed to have. So do you get rid of the inside linebackers coach, or the tight ends coach, or the secondary coach? Trust me I get your point but those other positions are just as important.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Who do you think will be the Best Freshman for Georgia in College Football in 2013?
Radi Nabulsi (1:23 PM)
I will guess Tray Matthews.
ChknDinner (Buford, GA)
What OL are we currently recruiting?
Radi Nabulsi (1:27 PM)
That is a long list. Here are a few names to know: Dyshon Sims, Nolan Kelleher, Isiah Wynn, David Sharpe, Dontavius Blair, Avery Gennesy, Rod Taylor and on and on and on. Seems Georgia targeted a lot of guards and tackles this year.
Hey Radi. With such tough opening stretch for the dawgs, and a much more inexperienced defense... do you think the dawgs secondary can keep klempson's offensive atack to a minumum and pull out a Big W on the road that would vault them into the top 3? if not Number 1 depending on how other games play out in week 1p.s. where is spurrier this year complaining about the schedule? e needs to realize its on a rotating basis and this year we drew LSU where his cocks drew miss st
Radi Nabulsi (1:32 PM)
As of right now I like Clemson's offense beating Georgia's defense and the Tigers getting the win. But if the Bulldogs' secondary gels before the game, I might have to make a different prediction. The Georgia offense will score a lot too, so one or two key sops in the third quarter could win the game for the Bulldogs. As for Spurrier, he knows exactly what is going on. He complains when he can and glosses over things when he has no case. He knows the drill. Spurrier knows how to play the media and the fan bases better than anyone I have ever seen.
To please everyone in the league without going to a 9 game schedule... couldn't they just go a 6-2 format except tenn bama and uga aub play every year so just those 4 teams would be on a 6-1-1? makes sense to me and it will get spurrier and miles to stop crying like 11 year old school girls
Radi Nabulsi (1:35 PM)
Sounds reasonable to me. Doesn't seem like it would be that hard. But once you start locking in rivals, everybody would want an exemption. Likely from West teams claiming that Kentucky and Vanderbilt are historically vital games...
Harkle (KY )
Radi, thought you might find this funny. Some years ago, probably 1985-86, my wife who was a UGA student at the time was sitting next to a guy on the campus bus. She didn't understand why everyone wanted his autograph and flat- out asked him who he was. He just smiled and said he was Herschel Walker. He was on campus for a visit or to take a couple of extra classes while he was in the USFL. She had no clue. Funny thing is, he doesn't look much different today than he did 25+ years ago!!
Radi Nabulsi (1:37 PM)
That is funny. Herschel is still a scary man. I saw him last year and I think if he could have snuck onto the field in a No. 24 jersey and a black visor, "Ken Malcome" would have had a carrer day.
We have landed Michel and Chubb now... but we still seem to be on Joe Mixon's radar as our ATH recruit. Im very high on him and he is extremely talented. Most ppl think he is going to stay out West but im not so sure. Whats your take?
Radi Nabulsi (1:39 PM)
I would eat my hat if he ever committed to Georgia. I just don't see it. I know there are articles saying this and that, but I don't believe he truly has any intentions of seriously considering the Bulldogs. But if he committed, I would like the hat peppered and deep fried.
Do you think the QB Park goes with Georgia even if Alabama offer is commitable?
Radi Nabulsi (1:41 PM)
Jacob Park is going to decide between Georgia and Virginia Tech in my opinion. Not sure which way he is leaning though. He loved his time in Athens and the crowded depth chart seems to be a non-issue.
In the early stages, who do you think will be the best 5 prospects from the state of Georgia in 2015?
Radi Nabulsi (1:43 PM)
Mitch Hyatt, Trenton Thompson, Taj Griffin, Mekhi Brown and Terry Godwin. Just an early guess mind you.
Keenan (Atlanta, GA)
Which JUCO prospect makes the biggest initial impact, Fluker or Rumph?
Radi Nabulsi (1:45 PM)
Fluker. Rumph had a great G-Day but that was by far the best performance he had achieved in the entire spring. That surprised everybody. If he keeps it up, then the answer will be Rumph, but my money is on Fluker.
Mickey (Johns Creek)
When will Christian Robinson take over as Director of Social Media Operations?
Radi Nabulsi (1:47 PM)
He should. Actually as a graduate assistant on defense, he will be very helpful since he knows the system so well. But I have heard a lot of current players say, "I am NOT calling him coach. I will call him CRob, but never Coach. The freshmen can do that!" So Christian might have his work cut out for him.
Any idea of a timeframe in which Lamont Gaillard is set to commit? Heard he wants to commits before his senior season but wasnt sure. UGA still have a couple legs up with him?
Radi Nabulsi (1:48 PM)
One leg for now. Last I heard, he wanted to decide later in the summer. But nothing concrete.
I heard that Nick Chubb's decision actually came down to Auburn and UGA, instead of Carolina like most thought it would. Was Auburn actually in it more than anyone knew?
Radi Nabulsi (1:50 PM)
Yes. He told me Monday that he never really "felt it" at South Carolina. He liked Auburn a lot more. And contrary to what you may have also heard, he has known for a while he was going to Georgia.
Seems like the O-Line and D-Line are the weakest positions for us year in and year out. What can the coaches do differently to bring in these big time prospects in the trenches?
Radi Nabulsi (1:54 PM)
Maybe send 800 Facebook messages? I have no idea. If I knew I would have been hired away from ESPN at any salary I named by the Georgia coaches. They do the same things other schools do and land some top players - Garrison Smith, John Theus, Ray Drew, John Taylor, Chris Burnette, David Andrews, etc. There is not something that one school is doing that Georgia is not. Folks say that UGA has to win a title first. Maybe. But I don't think it is that simple.
Have you heard of 2016 TE Isaac Nauta? What do you think of him and do you think Georgia has a chance to get him in the next few years?
Radi Nabulsi (1:57 PM)
I really like that kid. I have a long interview that has been sitting on my recorder for weeks now. Nauta is the most polished freshman (rising sophomore) that I have likely ever met. Talking to him is like interviewing a five-year NFL vet. He is all of his listed 6-4, 236-pounds. He works incredibly hard and has soft hands. He joined some linebacker drills and was destroying guys across from him. He will be a national recruit.
I think Radi needs a new watch....
Radi Nabulsi (1:58 PM)
Too many diamonds on my Rolex to actually see the time.
Mickey (Johns Creek)
Do you foresee that Bobo will one day be the Dawgs head coach?
Radi Nabulsi (2:00 PM)
Hmmm. He would have to leave first and coach elsewhere. I think the fanbase would not support him until he proved he could win somewhere else.
How do you see the season playing out?
Radi Nabulsi (2:01 PM)
Really hot and then nice, and eventually getting cold. Sorry. Could not resist. Right now I think Georgia finishes second in the East to Florida.
RHJ (McDonough, GA)
Who do u think will start in place of Josh Harvey Clemons, when the UGA faces Clemson?
Radi Nabulsi (2:02 PM)
Corey Moore may be an option now. He had some grade issues that are now cleared up. I think Shaq Fluker is the guy for now though.
Is Bama recruiting Da'Shawn at the Jack linebacker position, the same as what the are Lorenzo Carter? Carter recently said that UGA is recruiting him the hardest and had favorable things to say about us. He also didnt mention Bama in the top 5 schools recruiting him the hardest when at one time they were number 1 and throwing it all at him. Whats your take on this? Carter is impressive as a prospect there is and want him in the red and black!
Radi Nabulsi (2:07 PM)
I don't know about the recruitment of Hand by Bama. But I will say this: the list of schools that are recruiting the hardest is not the same as which schools are the favorites. Toledo can recruit like crazy- heck, Vanderbilt does all the time - but that doesn't mean either will land a 5-star. Recruiting is not always based on effort. Sometimes it is something said on a trip, a family member's advice or simply the color of the uniforms that causes a player to pick or dismiss a school. All that said, I like Georgia's chances with Carter.
Yeah I also was wondering about 2016 Isaac Nauta, he would be a huge recruit for Georgia to land because I have seen him play! But realistically what are his chances of signing with Georgia in a few years? Have you heard? Also what do you think of him as a player?
Radi Nabulsi (2:09 PM)
As a player is strong, fast, and nasty with his hands. He looks like he will be a super-star. I saw him make a freakish catch at practice and run over guys seniors with lots of D1 offers. But he hasn't hinted at where he will go. That is 3 years away and he knows it.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Will Christian Lemay see the field as a starter for Georgia before his career is done?
Radi Nabulsi (2:10 PM)
I don't see that happening.
Should we take the Jacob Ford offer as a sign that UGA is throwing in the towel on their recruitment of Deshaun Watson?
Radi Nabulsi (2:14 PM)
Jacob Park. That was the exact question I asked when I heard the offer went out. My take was that Georgia does not need a 2014 QB and Bobo is hard at work evaluating 2015 QBs. He offered Watson since DeShaun is a freakishly talented quarterback, a program changer. Park apparently graded out close to or equal to that level and Bobo offered. I don't see it as a sign of desperation since Bobo is not pressed to sign a QB in this class.
Everyone seems to have forgotten we signed AJ last year, he was a 4* and to be honest he looks pretty good on film, whats your take on him?
Radi Nabulsi (2:16 PM)
Turman looks like bulldozer. As thin as Georgia;s backfield is right now, I can bet Bryan McClendon hasn't forgotten him. But with the high-profile commits of Michel and Chubb, it is only natural that they receive all the water-cooler talk.
Is Parrish supposed to announce tomorrow?
Radi Nabulsi (2:18 PM)
Yes. ESPN 150 athlete Malkom Parrish is announcing Thursday at 11:00 p.m. ET. He just camped at Georgia and has the Bulldogs and Georgia Tech as his top two schools.
Do you think the defensive line will be better under Chris Wilson?
Radi Nabulsi (2:19 PM)
They sure are a much happier bunch. The linemen I talked to told me how much more fun spring was than last year. As to production? We will see.
Joe Mixon recently named UGA one of the schools currently recruiting him hardest, also named UGA among his favorites that would be getting one of his OV's. That was last week at the Rivals 5* camp. Do you think Nick Chubb's commitment instantly kicks us out of his race?
Radi Nabulsi (2:20 PM)
Yes. But I don't think UGA was ever in it.
Who will be the starting QB after Mason gets his one year?
Radi Nabulsi (2:21 PM)
Brice Ramsay. Or maybe Jacob Park. Of course there is still time for Chad Morris to get hired away from Clemson and Deshaun Watson to wind up at Georgia...
Is Malkom Parrish officially a dawg tomorrow if you had to pick right now?
Radi Nabulsi (2:22 PM)
If I had to pick I would say yes.
Doug (Silver Creek, GA)
Radi, I'm curious as to why you like Florida to win the East. In my mind, where are they going to find enough offense? They have zero proven receiving options and the running backs are talented, but young. Defensively, they'll be very good, but I don't think it's enough to carry them to Atlanta.
Radi Nabulsi (2:26 PM)
"Talented but young" running backs...Where have I herd that before? Let me think...Just teasing you Doug. We saw what a couple talented backs running behind a completely revamped offensive line can do last year here in Athens. Might work in Gainesville too. Granted Murray was able to torch those teams that crowded the box and Florida doesn't have that threat yet.
Radi Nabulsi (2:28 PM)
Ok folks, I have got to go. I have a preview of Georgia's 7-on-7 to write for tomorrow. Thanks for stopping by. Sorry I did not get to all the questions. Hang onto them and ask us next week.