Riverdale wide receiver Rashad Canty, left, give a lot of credit to Raiders offensive coordinator Terrone Owens for helping him land some Div. I scholarship offers. (Staff Photo: Derrick Mahone)
As the last recruiting weekend wraps up in a few days, it has become crunch time for several area athletes as they start to make their college decision.
Riverdale offensive coordinator Terrone Owens has been working the Internet and phones in hopes of landing a few more of his players some scholarship offers.
“It has really been hectic these last few days,” Owens said. “I promised all my seniors that want to play on the next level and get their education that I would do everything I can to help them. They put it all out for me during the season, now its my time to grind for them.”
Although the inclement weather that has paralyzed the metro Atlanta area the last the few days has presented a problem, it hasn’t stopped the phone calls or social media communication.
“Any time coaches are stuck on the road, or can’t get somewhere or out of somewhere, it can really mess up a program’s schedule,” said Keith Niebuhr, a recruiting analyst with 247sports. “Fortunately for many schools, most of the 2014 class is done. So there aren’t many guys they need to visit. This time of year, coaches spend a lot of time getting a jump start on 2015.”
Some of the non-Div. I players are the ones now searching for offers.
“The goal is to get all our senior that can play college football, I don’t care what level, a chance to do it,” Owens said. “I tell them that they need to go where they are wanted, and get a chance to play.”
The majority of all the FBS recruits have already committed to a school, but verbal commitments are non-binding and players are free to change their minds before signing their letters-of-intent. National Signing Day is Feb. 5.
The top uncommitted senior in the Southern Crescent is Andrew Williams of Eagle’s Landing Christian. A standout defensive linemen, the 6-foot-4, 250-pounder will announce on Wednesday his decision between Clemson and Auburn. ESPN is expected to be at the school to broadcast the decision.
“The last weekend is big at some schools, not big at others,” Niebuhr said. “In fact, most will host junior days this weekend. Those schools have already had most of their official visitors on campus. For kids that have had colleges pop up in the final weeks, it’s crucial because it may be the only time they get to see a place before National Signing Day.”
Riverdale quarterback Greg Taylor, who has a 3.5 grade-point average, has offers from Div. II schools Paine, Kentucky State, Miles, Cumberland and Albany State. However, he said that he might wait until after signing day to see what other offers come through.
Taylor missed five games this season with an ACL injury, but still managed to pass for 1,093 yards and 11 touchdowns with only two interceptions. He had knee surgery on Dec. 12, but it already doing light jogging.
“The rehab is going well,” Taylor said. “Right now, I’m talking to a few coaches at some bigger schools. I probably will not sign on signing day. There might be a breakthrough for me.”